Schooling and Social Change Since 1760 : Creating Inequalities through Education book cover
1st Edition

Schooling and Social Change Since 1760
Creating Inequalities through Education

ISBN 9780815347163
Published February 22, 2021 by Routledge
206 Pages 1 B/W Illustrations

SAVE ~ $32.00
was $160.00
USD $128.00

Prices & shipping based on shipping country


Book Description

Schooling and Social Change in England since 1760 offers a powerful critique of the situation of British education today and shows the historical processes that have helped generate the crisis confronting policymakers and practitioners at the present time.

The book identifies the key phases of economic and social change since 1760 and shows how the education system has played a central role in embedding, sustaining and deepening social distinctions in Britain. Covering the whole period since the first industrialization, it gives a detailed account of the development of a deeply divided education system that leads to quite separate lifestyles for those from differing backgrounds. The book develops arguments of inequalities through a much-needed account of the changes in education.

This book will be of great interest for academics, scholars and post-graduate students in the field of history of education and education politics. It will also appeal to administrators, teachers and policy makers, especially those interested in the historical development of schooling.

Table of Contents




Education in England: intentions and outcomes

Industrialisation and education

The characteristics of English society

Chapter 1: An age of revolutions: 1760-1830

The ever-whirling wheel of Change’

Schooling in the Eighteenth Century

A new context for education

Planning for social stratification

Evangelicals and the Sunday school movement

The beginnings of systematisation: the monitorial schools

Socialists, utopians and education

The first stirrings of the State

Embedding inequalities


Chapter 2: The workshop of the world: 1830-1895

‘In a progressive country change is constant’

‘Governing as little as they could’: schooling the poor in Victorian England

Systematising superiority: the education of a new elite

Creating a new middle class: the reform of the endowed schools

Rebuilding the ivory tower

‘Places of moral rather than intellectual training’: the schooling of middle

class girls

Chapter 3: Embedding privilege: the charitable status of elite schools

A neglected issue

Charitable status: the realities

The origins of charitable status

The need for change

Moves towards reform

‘A great concession’: the establishment of the Charity Commission

The formative years of the Charity Commission

Long-term implications

Chapter 4: Schooling for a changing world: 1895-1914

The Victorian legacy

A new administration for education

Towards a new elementary education

Regulating secondary education

Educating the Edwardian elite

Chapter 5: 1914-1939: Schools fit for heroes?

War and its aftermath

Conflicting aspirations

Economising on education

Planning educational futures

Schooling the common people

Gradations of schooling: educating elites between the Wars

Chapter 6: ‘The safeguard of social stratification’: 1939-1979

Schooling during the Second World War

‘The search for freedom from want’: the post-War years

The primary concern: building a new sector of education

The false dawn of comprehensivisation: secondary schooling, 1945-79

‘For all those who are qualified by ability and attainment…and who wish to

do so’: the post-War expansion of higher education

A note of caution

Chapter 7: Neo-Liberalism and multi-nationalism: 1979 to the present

A novel context?

Implementing the new politics of education

The realities of change: the primary sector

The outsourcing of secondary education

The private sector

How higher education was marketized


Schooling and social class

Children as victims




View More



Roy Lowe is one of Britain’s best-known historians of education, having published extensively over a long period on the history of schools and universities. He was for some years President of the UK History of Education Society and was awarded an OBE for services to education in 2002.


'This book performs the important civic service of showing the ways in which the English education system has worked consistently for over two centuries to sustain and reinforce those inequalities which continue to be such a marked feature of contemporary English society. Clearly written and well-organised, the detailed narrative shows fully how the careful and critical study of education over the long term is such a valuable perspective from which to study British society.'

Simon Szreter, Professor of History and Policy, University of Cambridge.

''An essential guide to the troubling history of educational inequalities in the UK and how they explain our contemporary social problems.''

Gary McCulloch, Brian Simon Professor of History of Education, UCL Institute of Education.