Salient. An Organ of Student Opinion at Victoria College Wellington, N.Z. Vol. 6, No. 4 April 14, 1943
Editorial — Army Education and Welfare Service
Army Education and Welfare Service
Throughout history one witnesses the peculiar phenomenon by which the rich give to the poor with one hand, earning thereby the reputation for charity, and take back with the other. A notorious example of this malpractice is that of the English public schools. These schools were "public" because they were endowed by their founders, some large-minded, others with guilty consciences, for the education of the poor. See what they are today! In our own country we have Wanganui Collegiate, originally endowed as a school for natives of the Pacific Islands, usurped by the "whites—and a certain class of whites at that—while the natives are hounded from its respectable precincts.
So with the W.E.A.—a workers' education scheme, but how many workers attend the lectures? Take any census and you will find that 75 per cent, of the attendances are by bourgeois intellectuals.
At the moment the Army Education Service is supplying the wants of the workers in the army, who comprise the great majority of the army. It is an excellent scheme as it stands in embryo today. It will grow, and may in due course take the place of the bourgeois W.E.A.; but let the workers, see to it that it remains Their scheme; let them beware lest, as always in the past, this scheme become the happy bunting-ground of a class other than their own!