Education Slideshow

Education & Schools

This slide show depicts different schools from the 1890s through to the 1950s. Note the changes over time in the students, classrooms and teachers. 

As coal mining towns grew the community demanded more infrastructure. As a consequence schools were built throughout the area in the mid to late 1800s. They were established on the basis of applications made to the Board of Education and evaluated on need. In 1864 Thomas Croudace (who served on the National Board of Education from 1866) and Isaac Bowman (colliery enginewright) made such an application. They wanted a national school built in Lambton. By 1870, the fifth anniversary of the school, there were 400 children enrolled. 

Not all children could attend school: often older children were compelled to leave school and work at the Lambton Colliery. Croudace tried to counteract the pull of the Colliery with a system that allowed working children to attend school on days the pit was idle.

Occasionally, schools were supported by donations from miners. In 1874 Mr Laidley of the Co-operative mine gave £300 – a fantastic sum in modern terms – towards the creation of the Plattsburg Public School.

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