England School Records Minutes of Governors, Managers, and Boards (National Institute)

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The original content for this article was contributed by The National Institute for Genealogical Studies in June 2012. It is an excerpt from their course English: Education,Health and Contemporary Documents  by Dr. Penelope Christensen. The Institute offers over 200 comprehensive genealogy courses for a fee ($).

Minutes of Governors, Managers and Boards[edit | edit source]

Many of these survive, including some from ancient schools. The local county record office or archives will usually know where those in their area are located even if they don’t have them in their holdings list. Minutes deal with administrative matters such as:

  • Finances
  • Building maintenance
  • Plans, drawings or photographs of the school buildings.
  • Curriculum and Policies
  • Teachers and other staff—employment, salaries, holidays.
  • Pupils are mentioned only in exceptional circumstances, except where the minutes also act as an admittance, school log or punishment book.

Some records have been microfilmed, and examples of a range of activities in minutes are shown below .

Chart: Overseers of Poor Agreement to Pay a Lace Teacher in Bedfordshire 1596

The payment of 2d the weeke to the woman that teacheth the pore children to work bone lace is by the Collectors to be paid fo…thy of the stocke of the collection of the former yeare & the Teacher receiving this 2d is to make good the wayte of that Thred that shall be wasted or lost under her handes in the making of the Lace.

And every child thus worckinge shall weekely be paid from the yard of Mr Bewly his stocke somuche as they shall earne by their workinge:

And such pore as doe not send their children, beinge able, to worke shall receive no releif from the collection;

It is meant that the sayd teacher shall receive so mainie as she conveniently should, may and can teache with out deniall of aire, that shall be appointed unto her by the collectors. [Three illegible signatures!]

Chart: Minutes of Trustees of Greencoat School in Stepney, Middlesex - Film 1,752194

A Register of each person who did subscribe the several sums of Money over against their names respectively to be paid at four equal payments (during pleasure) for setting up a Charity School in the Hamlett of Ratcliffe in the Parish of Stepney in the County of Middlesex.
[Columns of names with amounts donated follows; the first 21 names are condensed here]
£1.0.0 - William Ingleton, John Johnson, Sherman Godfrey, Robert Townsend, Daniel Fox, William Orton, Thomas Quilter, Joseph Willmott, James Besouth, Charles Walker, Mary Wakelin, Peter Bere, Isaac Sharp, Francis Proud, John Bodington, John Roberts

15/- Mary Badham
10/- Hannah Bowle, William Thomas, Henry Farden, Peter Perry

At a meeting September 16th 1710:

These persons whose names are underwritten were chosen treasurer and Trustees for the Charity Scholl in the Hamlett of Ratcliffe

Capt John Gorum -- Treasurer

Mr William Ingleton
Capt James Morgan
Capt Daniel Updike
Mr Daniel Fox
Mr Charles Wlaker
Mr. Joseph Willmott

1754 Oct 3rd
William son of William and Mary Spikes of Ratcliff marriner
William son of John and Elizabeth Culverhouse of Ratcliff baker
Thomas son of John and Mary Wilkins alias Wilkinson of Ratcliff sawyer. The above three children were admitted at the same time

1754 Nov 7th
Mr Loveday was desired to call on the grandfather of Jno Togwell who appear’d to be absent ever since Sunday last to know the reason of such his absence.
[and after a further investigation]

1754 Dec 5th
Mr Loveday informing the Gentlemen at this meeting that in pursuance of the Minutes of 21st Nov last he applied to the Parents of John Togwell and received no satisfactory answer. And he never having appear’d at the school since, It is hereby resolved:
That the said John Togwell be Discharged from any further Attendance at this School, And that he be allowed no further benefit of this Charity. Mr Loveday is to take care of whatever Cloathing was lately made for him.

1754 Jan 16th
It is this day agreed Mr Thomas Horne, Mr Archibald Chalmers, Mr John Osborne, Mr Thomas Brookes and Mr George Purvis on behalf of the Chairy Children of the Hamlet of Ratcliff in the Parish of Stepney in the County of Midx and
John Power of St Sepulchre London that the said John Power for and in consideration of the sum of Twenty Pounds sixteen shillings a year, or eight shillings a week, to be paid the said John Power by the Treasurer of the said Charity School. To Commence on the 1st Day of March next, for and during the term of One Year, he the sd John Power shall Teach and Instruct Three such Days in each Week as the Treasurer and Trustees shall direct, the Thirty five Boys in the School in the Art and Method of Knitting or Braiding Netts.
[The terms continue for another couple of pages, then parental permission is noted as follows:]
We whose names are under Wrote being the Parents or Guardians of the Children belonging to the Charity School of Ratcliff in the Parish of Stepney, do consent that our sd Children shall be Employed in making Netts in the sd School, or any other thing the Treasurer and Trustees for the sd Charity shall think proper to put them to. Witness our Hands this 20th Janry 1755.
[Parent or Guardian] for [Child]
Mary Clark X for Thomas Wilkins
Elizabeth Williams X for James Williams
Sarah Crole for John Crole
Mary Demell for Anto Demell
Mary Abery X for May Abery
Mary Spikes for Wm Spikes
Ruth Blackburn X for Tim: Blackburn
Rachel Trew for John Trew
Mary Fitzgarald X for Garh Fitzgarald
Elizabeth Barnes X for John Barnes
Elizabh Nettleship X for Thos and Robert Nettleship
Elizabh Currell X for Thos and Robert Currell
Ann Nichols for Gabl Nicholls
Mary Breadcutt for James Breadcutt
Ann Coleman X for James Jones
Ann Jolly for Robert Jolly

[A further note has 6 parents objecting, so their children were discharged from the school]
[Due to persistent absence of Susan Coleman and the impertinence of her mother, the girl was discharged]

1754 Feb 27
Ann Everest appearing and praying that her Daughter Mary Platt Everest may be received on this Foundation in the Room of Susan Coleman, Discharged, the same was agreed to and she is to be Enter’d accordingly.

Chart: Extracts from Minutes of Wapping, Charity School 1808

1808 January 27
Present the following Gentlemen: Revd ME Coen, Revd Jas Delaney, Revd Jn Serjeant, Mr McCarthy, Mr Ryan, Mr Murphy, Mr Ds McCarthy, Mr Rooney, Mr Findlay.
Mr Sherrott the treasurer sent his accounts which was examined and found very incorrect and not agreeing with Mr Gibson’s account.
Mr. Gibson was desired to inform Mr Sherrott thereof and to request him to furnish another.

1808 March 6
Jas Phillips son of Jas Phillips of No 1 Mulbery Gardens aged 9 years recommended by Mr. Dunn and is admitted this night.
Dennis Collings son of the late John Collings aged 9 years lives at No 5 King Street is put on Mr Lyons Fund and is admitted tonight.
Thos Finn son of Elanor Finn aged 8 years lives at No 7 Blue Gate fields recommended by Mr Ryan is admitted tonight.
Mr John Nowlan made a motion which was seconded by Mr McCarthy and carried unanimously as follows, that Mr Kelley the school master do summonds the parents of such children as shall be absent from school 5 days in a month before the committee at their next monthly meeting to give an account of the cause of their being absent.
Revd ME Coen reported he had recevd from Mr Farnsworth his subscription of £1.1s.0d. Mr Mordaunt brought from Mr Andrew Warner 2 years subscriptions £2.2.0

Chart: Appointment of Schoolmaster for Salisbury Methodist School 1845 - Film 1526366

Memorandum of an Agreement made the tenth day of April 1845, between the Committee of the Wesleyan Day School in Salisbury of the one part, and James Mumford, Schoolmaster of the same place of the second part, whereby the said Committee jointly and severally agree to appoint the said James Mumford to the office of Master or Teacher of the said School, and to allow him in respect of such offices a salary of seventy Pounds , to be payable quarterly, and in consideration of the said appointment, and salary aforesaid, the said James Mumford agrees to perform under the direction of the said Committee, the duties of the said office in an efficient and satisfactory manner, and to give three months notice in writing to the said Committee, if at any time he shall feel desirous of relinquishing the Appointment, and the duties connected therewith. The Committee also agreeing on there part to give the said James Mumford the like notice if at any time hereafter a large majority of them shall, for good and sufficient reason, feel desirous of being relieved from the engagement hereby entered into.
As witness our Hands the day and year aforesaid.
George Gregory, Treasurer, on behalf of the said Committee
James Mumford, Schoolmaster

Chart: Managers’ Minutes of Upton County Primary School, Bexley, Kent

1948 26 April
The afternoon was a holiday in honour of Their Majesties’ Silver Wedding.

1948 31 May
Enrolment stands at 411, with 260 fed mid-day meal in 3 classrooms and the hall every day.
Kent Education Committee has advised that the maximum aggregate school holidays allowed by the Ministry of Education is 12 weeks, together with no more than 10 days in the educational year to be granted by the Managers as mid-term or other occasional holidays. Thus, for the 1948-1949 school year the dates were set as:
Autumn term – 6.9.48 – 17.12.48 = 75 days
Less 5-day autumn holiday 25.10.48 – 29.10.48 = 70 days total
Spring term – 3.1.49 – 13.4.49 = 73 days total
Summer term – 2.5.49 – 26.7.49 = 62 days
Less 5-day Whitsun holiday 6.6.49 – 10.6.49 = 57 days total
Giving total school year of 200 days.

1948 10 June
Domestic Staff
Mrs L. Archer SMA (? School Meals Assistant) [appointed]
12.4.48 – 22.5.48 during absence of Mrs Goddard

Accident to Scholar
To report that Roger Irwin aged 9 sustained a crushed finger when interfering with a radiator in the new classroom before school began on 3rd June 1948. First Aid was administered and the boy referred to the Cottage Hospital. It is feared, however, that he may lose a part or all of his little finger.

Use of School out of School Hours
To receive the report of the Head Mistress that the Hawthorn Club have used the school premises carefully. The use of the physical training equipment has been requested but this has not been allowed in the absence of a qualified instructor.

Tarpaved Area
To consider, if received, the Borough Engineer and Surveyor’s estimate for the tarpaving of the area between the Boys’ and Girls’ playgrounds.

1948 5 October

The Caretaker was interviewed and questioned by members of the Managers. In reply to the questions the Caretaker stated that the hours he was actually working were 7 – 9am, 11 – 12.30, and 3 – 6pm on weekdays. It was pointed out to him that this in fact amounted to 6½ hours per day instead of the 8½ which were his agreed hours and which had been brought to his notice in a letter of 28th June. In reply to further questions he also stated that during holidays he normally worked mornings only. Mr Welling pointed out that during the winter he also had to attend at weekends to carry out the stoking. After Mr. Welling had left the meeting and after further discussion it was resolved that Mr Welling’s dismissal be recommended to the Bexley Committee but that action be deferred for one month. The Chairman was authorised to decide at the end of this time whether the recommendation for dismissal should then go forward or whether it should be deferred until the next meeting of the Managers.

Furniture and Equipment
The Correspondent reported that the provision of Parallel Ropes had also been requested.

1954 24 June

Teaching Staff – Permanent
To approve the following appointments:
Mrs E. Harkness 1.9.54 Additional appointment approved
Mr S.J. York 1.9.54 Vice Mr Murphy

Teaching Staff – Temporary
To approve the following appointments:
Miss G. Clarke from 3.5.54 Vice Mr Murphy
Miss E. Hildyard from 3.5.54 Additional class Summer term
Miss G. Kendon from 3.5.54 Continuation of employment

Leave of Absence
To approve leave of absence granted as follows:
Mr G. Denham 9.2 and 12.2.54 Father’s death and funeral. -- Full salary recommended
Miss E. Kellaway 8 – 12.2.54 Illness and death of mother -- Full salary recommended

Use of School out of Hours
To approve the following users:
Women’s Junior Air Corps Mondays Training Sessions
1.3 – 12.4.54; 3.5 – 31.5.54; 14.6 – 19.7.54
Presiding Officer 13..5.54 Polling Station

Occasional Closure
To report that the school was closed on the 2nd March 1954, on the occasion of the Entrance Examination Part II. [Only those taking the 11+ exam went to school that day! I was the previous year’s bunch, the 1st part being taken before Xmas and the 2nd in March]


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