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Extract from the Stamford Mercury Friday 28 August 1869
Grammar School Inquiry Commission

Grammar School

The following are extracts from Mr Green's report on the Grammar Schools in Northamptonshire:-


Here I found 50 boys in attendance, divided into five classes.

In the winter, I was told 18 had attended. The master has no assistance. In the morning girls as well as boys come to the school, and are taught by the master's wife.

There were eight boys in the first class, of an average age a little exceeding 11. In writing from dictation a passage from the Christian Knowledge Society's History of England two were perfect, five fair, three bad. In reading from the same book all but two did well. In arithmetic (not going much beyond reduction) three of the same boys did very well, three fairly.

In the second class were 12 boys of an average age of 9¼ years. They read fairly, though not quite perfectly, from the “third book.” In the four first rules of arithmetic, simple and compound, they all did fairly, being very correct, though in some cases slow.

The average age in the third class was eight and a little more. The boys in it read very imperfectly from the “second book of lessons” and below them were two large classes. Some boys came to the school, I was told, as young as five.

It appeared that the farmers of the place seldom sent sons to the school. The poor people of the place are mostly shoemakers, and the farmers probably object the more on this account to the mixture of their sons with the poor boys. Eighteen pounds a year from a charity for the poor is applied to the school. Another 26s. a year, arising from Barwick's charity, the object of which was to teach boys their letters in order to fit them for the grammar school, is applied to an infant school. I should suppose that the best plan for realizing the intention of the founder of the grammar school as well as the most useful in itself, would be to maintain one good elementary school with the sums mentioned, of 26s. and 18s. a year, and then pay over the income of the grammar school proper to the Kettering school (3½ miles off), on the understanding that it should take certain boys free from Burton Latimer if they could pass a bona fide examination in elementary knowledge. By this arrangement the farmers of Burton Latimer might be brought to avail themselves of the grammar endowment, and the poor would not suffer.

The income from 130 acres of land at Burton Latimer is divided among the poor in various sums; 40 acres of this are cultivated in small lots by the spade labour of certain poor families, who pay a small rent, which goes into the general fund. This is only a strong example of the charities to be met with in every second village of Northamptonshire.

Foundation and Endowment. - By Margaret Burbank, who, by deed, dated 1 June, 1587, conveyed nearly ten acres of land in the parish of Hardingstone for the use of a schoolmaster; a house was given by Lord Harrowden and his son George shortly afterwards. There is also a sum of 7s. yearly on a farm payable to the schoolmaster under a Decree of the Court of Chancery.

School Property. - Annual income, 55s.; all applied to purposes of school.

Objects of Trust. - For a schoolmaster to teach grammar to the children of the inhabitants. (Foundress)

(Foundress) Government and Masters. - The trustees, 10 in number, gentlemen in the county, are the governing body. The Rector of parish superintends the school.

Present State of School. - Elementary under Government Inspection. Master and mistress receive 120s. a year in all between them. Fee 1d. a week.

Trustees, etc (1867). - The Rector, the Rectory; Sir G Robinson, Bart., Cranford Hall; the Rev G Stopford, Rector of Barton, Barton Seagrave Rectory; Mr Pulver, farmer, Broughton, Henry Harpur Esq., Coton Hall; A A Young, Esq., Orlingbury.

Head Master. - D B Stalker.

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