Ministry of Education, Teachers Branch 2 (Training), 1961-1964
Subject to 30 year closure
Administrative / biographical background:
The McNair Committee on the supply, recruitment and training of teachers and youth leaders was appointed in March 1942 and reported in May 1944. The recommendations included the formation of Area Training Organisations (ATOs) to develop a closer relationship between the universities and the teacher training colleges. Two schemes, known subsequently as scheme A and scheme B, were outlined in paragraphs 163-196 of the report.
Scheme A involved "a major constitutional change" in the organisation of teacher training with the proposed introduction of University Schools (Institutes) of Education. These were "an organic federation of approved training institutes working in co-operation with other approved educational institutes" which were responsible for "the training and assessment of the work of all students seeking to be recognised by the Board of Education as qualified teachers." The ministry decided that the cost of scheme A organisation would fall to the responsible university, to be included in its grant from the University Grants Committee.
Scheme B involved the reconstitution of the existing Joint Examination Boards (who were responsible for the award of qualifying certificates) with finance met by the ministry, but was superseded by scheme C, which was formulated by a special sub-committee of the committee of Vice Chancellors and Principals in November 1944. Scheme C institutes were independent of their university and were financed by a 100% grant from the ministry under Regulation No 20 of G R 7 - Teachers Training Regulations.
In the event, the universities of Birmingham, Bristol, Durham, Exeter, Nottingham, Hull, Leicester, London, Manchester, Southampton, Wales, Sheffield, Leeds and Oxford opted for scheme A, while Cambridge, Reading and Liverpool adopted scheme C.
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