Queensland Street Day Industrial School, Liverpool, Lancashire
In 1883, the Liverpool School Board established the Queensland Street Day Industrial School Queensland Street, Edge Hill, Liverpool. The purpose-built premises were formally certified for operation on February 4th, 1884. Mrs Charlotte Parry, formerly in charge of the South Corporation Day Industrial School, was appointed superintendent. One of teachers at the South Corporation School, Miss M. Rigby, also transferred to Queensland Street.
An early inspection reported very positively on the new establishment and suggested that 'nothing could be more encouraging than the sight of these poor, neglected, and poverty-stricken waifs, swept out of the seething streets into an atmosphere of quiet and order, and humanizing instruction.' On a more prosaic level, it was noted that the school and class rooms were spacious and well ventilated, with every modern appliance. A large workroom was located on the upper floor, and was also used as an assembly and drill room. There were separate yards for boys and girls, and good baths and lavatories although the boys' lavatory appeared rather small.
Attendance at the School was encouraged by a system of rewards for regularity and punctuality. A small prize and distinction was offered to the most regular children and produced a very good effect. In its early months, the boys were employed in getting the building and premises into good order. Mat-making was then introduced. The girls were learning to knit and to sew, and to wash their own clothing, with a wash-house and laundry provided for this purpose. There was good singing, marching and drill.
On October 2nd, 1888, Miss Elizabeth Cregg succeeded Mrs Parry as superintendent.
An 1896 report noted that there was a small amount of mat-making, some coal sack-making, and wood-chopping for the school. From 20 to 30 boys attended a manual instruction centre once a week for about 2 hours. The girls did the housework and washing, learned to knit and sew, and about 20 receive special instruction in cookery from a properly qualified teacher. When desirable, children were licensed to work, and suitable situations were found for them. Musical drill with dumb-bells etc. was carried out regularly. There were good play-yards and sheds for recreation. The whole School spent a fortnight under canvas each year as the seaside. There were a few days of optional attendance at bank holiday times, and during the summer school holidays only morning attendance was insisted upon. A cantata was generally got up amongst the children at Christmas time. The general health had been good. Any case of illness that did arise was carefully treated at the neighbouring infirmary. A doctor visited the school once a month, and when sent for, as well as seeing children at their homes by request. Thanks to the Police Clothing Fund, Children's Aid Society, and some of the ordinary day schools, the children were kept fairly well clothed. By the kindness of private friends, a few prizes were given at Christmas. The school now dealt with some cases from the new areas recently included in the boundary of Liverpool. Generally the children were of a slightly better class than in the other Day Industrial Schools. Of those on licence, 12 (5 boys and 7 girls) were at work. and 35 (25 boys and 10 girls) were attending elementary schools. Unlike the other Board Day Industrial Schools in Liverpool, the majority of the children at Queensland Street were Protestants.
On June 5th, 1903, the School was re-certified with its capacity now set at 280 children aged from 5 to 12 years.
In 1920, Miss A. Willie was the School's superintendent.
The School ceased its role as an Industrial School as of 17th March, 1928, and became an ordinary day school. The building no longer survives.
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- None identfied at present — any information welcome.
- Higginbotham, Peter Children's Homes: A History of Institutional Care for Britain s Young (2017, Pen & Sword)
- Mahood, Linda Policing Gender, Class and Family: Britain, 1850-1940 (1995, Univeristy of Alberta Press)
- Prahms, Wendy Newcastle Ragged and Industrial School (2006, The History Press)
- None noted at present.
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