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From your study of pre 20th century texts, discuss the theme of schooldays and of education in general - How much has the system changed today?

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Introduction

From your study of pre 20th century texts, discuss the theme of schooldays and of education in general. How much has the system changed today? In this essay I am going to discuss the theme of schooldays and education in general. I will do this in relation to my study of the pre 20th century texts "Jane Eyre" by Charlotte Bronte and "David Copperfield" by Charles Dickens. I will also show how much the system has changed. During the 18th and 19th century mainly upper and middle class parents sent their children to Pe-ping (private) schools. The poor who could not afford education, which cost one pence per week, sent their children to church schools. The classrooms were often bare except for an embroidered text; this text was religious and was meant to be uplifting. Many girls didn't attend school. They were taught at home about practical things such as sewing and cooking but others did, as in Jane Eyre's case, she was sent to Lowood for punishment. Poorer children were only at school for 2-3 years before they had to work for a living. Only 20% of children actually went to school at all. ...read more.

Middle

The building was in bad condition with cracks and crevices in the walls, "wind, whistling through crevices of our bedroom window had made us shiver in our beds, and turned the contents of the ewers to ice" and kept food to a minimum of porridge at breakfast which was only just edible, if not burnt. Whereas David had a better time learning as he was taught at home in the second best parlour, "I come into the second best parlour" but the atmosphere was intimidating with the Murdstones watching over David and his mother. Teacher pupil relationships happen all the time in today's schools with every pupil having a favourite teacher or one they can talk openly to. David did not really have someone like that unless you include his mother who was his teacher. Jane however did, Miss Temple. Miss Temple ran the school and tried to do what she could to make things better for the girls. For example after the porridge was burnt, she tried to make it up to them by ordering a special treat of bread and cheese. ...read more.

Conclusion

"I looked narrowly as she emerged from the book-closet she was just putting back her handkerchief into her pocket, and the trace of a tear glistened on her thin cheek". This was because she didn't want to give Miss Scatchard the satisfaction of seeing her cry. In conclusion I believe that the system has changed dramatically and to great effect, every child has the chance to go to school, with no discrimination whether they are female or a different race. There is no physical punishment in schools; the only punishment given out is detentions, which parents are notified before their child stays behind. The buildings are in great condition and the teachers are strict without being unfair to pupils. Parents have a say about the way their children are treated teachers can not take dramatic action at the spur of the moment, though teachers can stop a child from learning by sending the culprit out of the classrooms. Facilities have changed with technology, with nearly every school having ICT facilities. With lessons becoming "fun" by using computers, the internet, videos and other "tools" of education and recreation. Chris McCrum Schooldays Essay ...read more.

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