The Education Act 1902

  • Created by: JosieHW3
  • Created on: 22-05-14 10:17

The Education Act 1902


  • Education inferior to many 'new' countries.
  • Belief that it would improve national efficiency by halting national decline.
  • Before school boards had only been responsible for elementary education but they had gone above and beyond their authority providing secondary education. Used rate payers' money which was illegal and in 1901 there had been a prosecution to recover the expenses. The judge ruled against the board restricting secondary education.
  • Balfour and Duke of Devonshire drafted new Education Act removing education boards and replacing them with Local Education Authorities. The LEAs were responsible fore both educations and also supported voluntary church schools through rate payers' money.


  • Salisbury and Chamberlain saw the problem but Salisbury was soon to retire and Chamberlain didn't have the authority one Balfour.
  • Nonconformists didn't want rate payers to support Anglican schools.
  • Liberals traditionally had political support from Nonconformists so they fought the proposal. Lloyd George took a leading role.
  • Chamberlain suggested avoiding rates and increasing government spending but the Boer War rule it out.
  • Clause introduced for an adoptive principle but removed because it would lead to local disputes and hostile local communities would leave out Anglican schools.
  • By 1903 thousands of prosecutions of Nonconformists who hadn't paid their rates.
  • Liberals benefited from the support of the newly revived Nonconformist and mended the party split.
  • Divided in Conservatives.
  • Main factor of Unionists bringing together Anglicans and Nonconformists failed.

Overall summary

One of the factors that lead to the landslide victory for the Liberals in the 1906 election.


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