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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 72

A Decidedly Retrograde Step

A Decidedly Retrograde Step.

I have shown pretty thoroughly that I am not in sympathy with the spirit that seems to have pervaded the majority of the Conference. I doubt whether the Conference as a whole was animated by a generous spirit, or attempted to place itself mentally in the position of the teacher, and so to realise his just claims and do as it would be done by. There was too much of the spirit of the policeman manifest in the proceedings. That principle of reposing confidence in teachers of which I spoke some time ago, and without which your "Education Act 1877," is just a dead letter, appears to have been conspicuous by its absence. How else can we account for that strange recommendation which was both proposed and adopted that a teacher's professional status should be liable to reduction—that it should vary, in fact, with the inspector's opinions. The view which the Conference must have held in adopting this recommendation is this: that pressure must always weigh upon teachers or you will never get a full day's work out of them. page 11 Against the spirit which is the father of that theory I desire to enter