Egerton Report (1899)

The Commission was first appointed in July 1885 with Hugh Grosvenor (Duke of Westminster) (1825-1899) as its Chair. Six months later, in January 1886, it was replaced by a new Commission with a wider remit, chaired by Wilbraham Egerton (Earl Egerton) (1832-1909). I have therefore called it the Egerton Report.

The complete report is shown in this single webpage. You can scroll through it or use the following links to go to the main sections:

Introduction (11-13)
The blind (13-43)
The deaf and dumb (43-91)
Idiots and imbeciles (92-106)
Scotland (107-111)
Ireland (112-123)
Reservations (124-128)

The Commission's recommendations are scattered throughout the report. The main ones can be found here:

The blind
The deaf and dumb
'Imbeciles'
Scotland (brief note only)
Ireland

Notes on the text

All the page numbers in the printed version were in Roman numerals: I have changed them for convenience.

Longer quotations were printed in small type. I have followed the normal convention of indenting these paragraphs.

I have omitted the marginal references to the transcripts of witnesses' evidence, but retained the footnotes.

I have modernised some of the punctuation, corrected a handful of typographical errors, and replaced the archaic l with .

The text of the 1889 Egerton Report was prepared by Derek Gillard and uploaded on 27 February 2021.


The Egerton Report (1889)
Report of the Royal Commission on the Blind, the Deaf and Dumb etc

London: HM Stationery Office


[title page]

REPORT

OF THE

ROYAL COMMISSION

ON

THE BLIND, THE DEAF AND DUMB ETC

OF THE

UNITED KINGDOM


Presented to both Houses of Parliament by Command of Her Majesty

LONDON:

PRINTED FOR HER MAJESTY'S STATIONERY OFFICE
BY EYRE AND SPOTTISWOODE
PRINTERS TO THE QUEEN'S MOST EXCELLENT MAJESTY

And to be purchased, either directly or through any Bookseller, from
EYRE AND SPOTTISWOODE, EAST HARDING STREET, FLEET STREET, E.C.
and 32, ABINGDON STREET, WESTMINSTER, S.W.; or
ADAM AND CHARLES BLACK, 6 NORTH BRIDGE, EDINBURGH; or
HODGES, FIGGIS, & Co., 104, GRAFTON STREET, DUBLIN

1889

[C. 5781]      Price 1s. 1d.


[page 2]

NAMES OF COMMISSIONERS

WITH THE

DATES OF THEIR APPOINTMENTS


28th July 1885:

HIS GRACE THE DUKE OF WESTMINSTER, K.G.
THE RIGHT HON. AND RIGHT REV. THE LORD BISHOP OF LONDON, D.D.
THE RIGHT HON. ANTHONY JOHN MUNDELLA, M.P.
FRANCES JOSEPH CAMPBELL, ESQ., LL.D.
THOMAS RHODES ARMITAGE, ESQ., M.D.
WILLIAM TINDAL ROBERTSON, ESQ., M.D.

13th August 1885:

ADMIRAL SIR EDWARD SOUTHWELL SOTHEBY, K.C.B.
EDMUND CHARLES JOHNSON, ESQ.

30th October 1885:

WILLIAM AUCHINCLOSS ARROL, ESQ.
ROBERT McDONNELL, ESQ., M.D., F.R.S. (since deceased)

(all the above revoked by subsequent Commission of 20th January 1886.)

20th January 1886:

THE RIGHT HON. THE LORD EGERTON OF TATTON.
THE RIGHT HON. AND RIGHT REV. THE LORD BISHOP OF LONDON, D.D.
THE RIGHT HON. SIR LYON PLAYFAIR, K.C.B., LL.D., M.P.
THE RIGHT HON. ANTHONY JOHN MUNDELLA, M.P.
THE RIGHT HON. SIR HENRY JOHN SELWIN-IBBETSON, BART., M.P.
ADMIRAL SIR EDWARD SOUTHWELL SOTHEBY, K.C.B.
BENJAMIN ST. JOHN ACKERS, ESQ., BARRISTER-AT-LAW.
THOMAS RHODES ARMITAGE, ESQ., M.D.
WILLIAM AUCHINCLOSS ARROL, ESQ.
FRANCES JOSEPH CAMPBELL, ESQ., LL.D.
EDMUND CHARLES JOHNSON, ESQ.
ROBERT McDONNELL, ESQ., M.D., F.R.S. (since deceased).
WILLIAM TINDAL ROBERTSON, ESQ., M.D. (now SIR TINDAL ROBERTSON, M.P.)

4th March 1886:

CHARLES FEW, ESQ. (since deceased).
WILLIAM WOODALL, ESQ., M.P.

27th April 1886:

THE REV. WILLIAM BLOMEFIELD SLEIGHT, M.A.

28th June 1886: THE REV. CHARLES MANSFIELD OWEN, M.A.

11th June 1887

LIONEL VAN OVEN, ESQ.

28th July1885

CHARLES EDWARD DRUMMOND BLACK, ESQ. (SECRETARY).


[page 3]

COMMISSIONS

VICTORIA, R.

Victoria, by the Grace of God of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, Queen, Defender of the Faith:

To Our right trusty and right entirely beloved Cousin and Councillor, Hugh Lupus, Duke of Westminster, Knight of Our Most Noble Order of the Garter, Chairman, the Right Reverend Father in God, Our right trusty and well-beloved Councillor, Frederick Bishop of London, Our right trusty and well-beloved Councillor, Anthony John Mundella, Our trusty and well-beloved Frances Joseph Campbell, Esquire, Doctor of Laws, Our trusty and well-beloved Thomas Rhodes Armitage, Esquire, Doctor of Medicine, and Our trusty and well-beloved William Tindal Robertson, Esquire, Doctor of Medicine; Greeting!

Whereas We have deemed it expedient that a Commission should forthwith issue to investigate and report upon the condition of the Blind in Our United Kingdom, the various systems of education of the blind, elementary, technical, and professional, at home and abroad, and the existing institutions for that purpose, the employment open to and suitable for the blind, and the means by which education may be extended so as to increase the number of blind persons qualified for such employment:

Now know ye, that We, reposing great trust and confidence in your knowledge and ability, have authorised and appointed, and do by these presents authorise and appoint you the said Hugh Lupus, Duke of Westminster, Frederick Bishop of London, Anthony John Mundella, Frances Joseph Campbell, Thomas Rhodes Armitage, and William Tindal Robertson to be Our Commissioners for the purposes aforesaid:

And for the better effecting the purposes of this Our Commission, We do by these presents give and grant unto you, or any three or more of you, full power to call before you such persons as you shall judge likely to afford you any information upon the subject of this Our Commission, and also to call for, have access to, and examine all such books, documents, registers, and records as may afford you the fullest information on the subject; and to inquire of, and concerning the premises by all other lawful ways and means whatsoever:

And We do further by these presents authorise and impower you, or any three or more of you to visit and personally inspect such places in Our United Kingdom or abroad as you may deem expedient for the more effectual carrying out of the purposes aforesaid:

And We do by these presents will and ordain that this Our Commission shall continue in full force and virtue, and that you, Our said Commissioners, or any three or more of you, may from time to time proceed in the execution thereof and of every matter and thing therein contained, although the same be not continued from time to time by adjournment:

And We further ordain that you, or any three or more of you, have liberty to report your proceedings under this Our Commission from time to time, if you shall judge it expedient so to do:


[page 4]

And Our further will and pleasure is that you do, with as little delay as possible, report to Us under your hands and seals, or under the hands and seals of any three or more of you, your opinion upon the several matters herein submitted for your consideration:

And for the purpose of aiding you in such matters, We hereby appoint Our trusty and well-beloved Charles Edward Drummond Black, Esquire, to be Secretary to this Our Commission.

Given at Our Court at Saint James's, the twenty-eighth day of July, one thousand eight hundred and eighty-five, in the forty-ninth year of Our reign.

By Her Majesty's Command,
RICHARD ASSHETON CROSS.

VICTORIA, R.

Victoria by the Grace of God of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, Queen, Defender of the Faith:

To Our trusty and well-beloved Sir Edward Southwell Sotheby, Knight Commander of Our Most Honourable Order of the Bath, Admiral on the Retired List of Our Navy, and Our trusty and well-beloved Edmund Charles Johnson, Esquire, Greeting!

Whereas We did by Warrant under Our Royal Sign Manual, bearing date the twenty-eighth day of July, one thousand eight hundred and eighty-five, appoint Our Right trusty and Right entirely beloved Cousin and Councillor, Hugh Lupus, Duke of Westminster, Knight of Our most Noble Order of the Garter, together with the several gentlemen therein mentioned, or any three or more of them, to be Our Commissioners to inquire into the condition of the Blind:

Now, know ye, that We reposing great trust and confidence in your zeal, discretion, and ability, have authorised and appointed, and do by these Presents authorise and appoint you the said Sir Edward Southwell Sotheby, and Edmund Charles Johnson to be Our Commissioners for the purpose aforesaid, in addition to and together with the Commissioners whom We have already appointed by the before-mentioned Royal Warrant.

Given at Our Court at Saint James's, the thirteenth day of August, one thousand eight hundred and eighty-five, in the forty-ninth year of Our reign.

By Her Majesty's Command,
RICHARD ASSHETON CROSS.

VICTORIA, R.

Victoria by the Grace of God of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, Queen, Defender of the Faith:

To Our trusty and well-beloved William Auchincloss Arrol, Esquire, and Our trusty and well-beloved Robert McDonnell, Esquire, Doctor of Medicine, Greeting!

Whereas We did by warrants under Our Royal Sign Manual, bearing date respectively the twenty-eighth day of July and the thirteenth day of August, one thousand eight hundred and eighty-five, appoint Our Right trusty and Right entirely beloved Cousin and Councillor, Hugh Lupus, Duke of Westminster, Knight of Our most Noble Order of the Garter, together with the several gentlemen therein respectively mentioned, or any three or more of them, to be Our Commissioners to inquire into the condition of the Blind:


[page 5]

Now, know ye, that We reposing great trust and confidence in your zeal, discretion, and ability, have authorised and appointed, and do by these Presents authorise and appoint you the said William Auchincloss Arrol and Robert McDonnell to be Our Commissioners for the purpose aforesaid, in addition to and together with the Commissioners whom We have already appointed.

Given at Our Court at Saint James's, the thirtieth day of October, one thousand eight hundred and eighty-five, in the forty-ninth year of Our reign.

By Her Majesty's Command,
RICHARD ASSHETON CROSS.

VICTORIA, R.

Victoria, by the Grace of God of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, Queen, Defender of the Faith: .

To Our right trusty and well-beloved Wilbraham, Baron Egerton, one of the Ecclesiastical Commissioners for England; the Right Reverend Father in God, Our right trusty and well-beloved Councillor, Frederick Bishop of London; Our right trusty and well-beloved Councillor, Sir Lyon Playfair, Doctor of Laws, Knight Commander of Our most Honourable Order of the Bath; Our right trusty and well-beloved Councillor, Anthony John Mundella; Our right trusty and well-beloved Councillor, Sir Henry John Selwin-Ibbetson, Baronet, Second Church Estates Commissioner; Our trusty and well-beloved Sir Edward Southwell Sotheby, Knight Commander of Our most Honourable Order of the Bath, Admiral on the Retired List of Our Navy; Our trusty and well-beloved Benjamin St. John Ackers, Esquire, Barrister-at-law; Our trusty and well-beloved Thomas Rhodes Armitage, Esquire, Doctor of Medicine; Our trusty and well-beloved William Auchincloss Arrol, Esquire; Our trusty and well-beloved Francis Joseph Campbell, Esquire, Doctor of Laws; Our trusty and well-beloved Edmund Charles Johnson, Esquire; Our trusty and well-beloved Robert MCDonnell, Esquire, Doctor of Medicine; and Our trusty and well-beloved William Tindal Robertson, Esquire, Doctor of Medicine; Greeting!

Whereas We did by Warrant under Our Royal Sign Manual bearing date the twenty-eighth day of July, one thousand eight hundred and eighty-five, and by subsequent Warrants authorise and appoint certain noblemen and gentlemen therein respectively named, or any three or more of them, to be Our Commissioners to investigate and report upon the condition of the Blind in our United Kingdom, the various systems of education of the Blind, elementary, technical, and professional, at home and abroad, and the existing institutions for that purpose; the employment open to and suitable for the blind, and the means by which education may be extended so as to increase the number of blind persons qualified for such employment:

Now know ye that We have revoked and determined, and do by these presents revoke and determine the said several Warrants and every matter and thing therein contained:

And whereas we have deemed it expedient that a new Commission should issue for the purposes specified in such Warrant of the twenty-eighth day of July, one thousand eight hundred and eighty-five; and that the scope of the said Commission should be enlarged; and that the Commissioners to be nominated for the purposes aforesaid should be authorised and appointed to investigate and report similarly upon the condition and education of the Deaf and Dumb, as well as such other cases as from special circumstances would seem to require exceptional methods of education:


[page 6]

Further know ye, that We, reposing great trust and confidence in your ability and discretion, have appointed, and do by these presents nominate, constitute, and appoint you, the said Wilbraham, Baron Egerton; Frederick, Bishop of London; Sir Lyon Playfair; Anthony John Mundella; Sir Henry John Selwin-Ibbetson; Sir Edward Southwell Sotheby; Benjamin St. John Ackers; Thomas Rhodes Armitage; William Auchincloss Arrol; Frances Joseph Campbell; Edmund Charles Johnson; Robert McDonnell; and William Tindal Robertson, to be Our Commissioners to investigate and report upon the condition of the Blind in Our United Kingdom, the various systems of education of the Blind, elementary, technical, and professional, at home and abroad, and the existing institutions for that purpose; the employment open to and suitable for the Blind, and the means by which education may be extended so as to increase the number of blind persons qualified for such employment; and also to investigate and report similarly upon the condition and education of the Deaf and Dumb as well as such other cases as from special circumstances would seem to require exceptional methods of education:

And for the better effecting the purposes of this Our Commission We do by these presents give and grant unto you, or any five or more of you, full power to call before you such persons as you shall judge likely to afford you any information upon the subject of this Our Commission; and also to call for, have access to, and examine, all such books, documents, registers, and records as may afford you the fullest information on the subject; and to inquire of any concerning the premises by all other lawful ways and means whatsoever:

And we do further by these presents authorise and empower you, or any five or more of you, to visit and personally inspect such places in Our United Kingdom or abroad as you may deem expedient for the more effectual carrying out of the purposes aforesaid:

And We do by these presents will and ordain that this Our Commission shall continue in full force and virtue, and that you Our Commissioners, or any five or more of you, may from time to time proceed in the execution thereof and of every matter and thing therein contained, although the same be not continued from time to time by adjournment.

And We further ordain that you, or any five or more of you, have liberty to report your proceedings under this Our Commission from time to time, if you shall judge it expedient so to do.

And Our further will and pleasure is that you do, with as little delay as possible, report to Us, under your hands and seals, or under the hands and seals of any five or more of you, your opinion upon the several matters herein submitted for your consideration.

And for the purpose of aiding you in such matters, We hereby appoint Our trusty and well-beloved Charles Edward Drummond Black, Esquire, to be Secretary to this Our Commission.

GIven at Our Court at St. James's, the twentieth day of January, one thousand eight hundred and eighty-six, in the forty-ninth year of Our reign.

By Her Majesty's Command,
RICHARD ASSHETON CROSS.


[page 7]

VICTORIA, R.

Victoria, by the Grace of God of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, Queen, Defender of the Faith:

To Our trusty and well-beloved Charles Few, Esquire, and Our trusty and well-beloved William Woodall, Esquire; Greeting!

Whereas We did by Warrant under Our Royal Sign Manual, dated the twentieth day of January, one thousand eight hundred and eighty-six, appoint our right trusty and well-beloved Wilbraham, Baron Egerton, one of the Ecclesiastical Commissioners for England, together with the several Gentlemen therein mentioned, or any five or more of them, to be Our Commissioners to inquire into the condition and education of the Blind, the Deaf and Dumb, and others:

Now know ye, that We, reposing great trust and confidence in your zeal, discretion, and ability, have authorised and appointed, and do by these presents authorise and appoint you, the said Charles Few and William Woodall, to be Our Commissioners for the purpose aforesaid, in addition to and together with the Commissioners whom We have already appointed.

Given at Our Court at Saint James's, the fourth day of March, one thousand eight hundred and eighty-six, in the forty-ninth year of Our reign.

By Her Majesty's Command,
HUGH C. E. CHILDERS.

VICTORIA, R.

Victoria, by the Grace of God of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, Queen, Defender of the Faith:

To Our trusty and well-beloved William Blomefield Sleight, Clerk, Master of Arts, Greeting!

Whereas We did by Warrants under Our Royal Sign Manual, bearing date respectively the twentieth day of January and the fourth day of March, one thousand eight hundred and eighty-six, appoint Our right trusty and well-beloved Wilbraham, Baron Egerton, one of the Ecclesiastical Commissioners for England, together with the several gentlemen therein respectively mentioned, or any five or more of them, to be Our Commissioners to inquire into the condition and education of the Blind, the Deaf and Dumb, and others:

Now know ye, that We, reposing great trust and confidence in your zeal, discretion, and ability, have authorised and appointed, and do by these presents authorise and appoint you, the said William Blomefield Sleight, to be a Commissioner for the purpose aforesaid, in addition to and together with the Commissioners whom We have already appointed.

Given at Our Court at Saint James's, the twenty-seventh day of April, one thousand eight hundred and eighty-six, in the forty-ninth year of Our reign.

By Her Majesty's Command,
HUGH C. E. CHILDERS.


[page 8]

VICTORIA, R.

Victoria, by the Grace of God, of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, Queen, Defender of the Faith:

To Our trusty and well-beloved Charles Mansfield Owen, Clerk, Master of Arts, Greeting!

Whereas We did by Warrant under Our Royal Sign Manual, bearing date the twentieth day of January, one thousand eight hundred and eighty-six, and by subsequent Warrants appoint Our right trusty and well-beloved Wilbraham, Baron Egerton, one of the Ecclesiastical Commissioners for England, together with the several gentlemen therein-named, or any five or more of them, to be Our Commissioners to inquire into the condition and education of the Blind, the Deaf and Dumb, and others:

Now know ye, that We, reposing great trust and confidence in your zeal, discretion, and ability, have authorised and appointed, and do by these Presents authorise and appoint you, the said Charles Mansfield Owen to be a Commissioner for the purpose aforesaid, in addition to and together with the Commissioners whom We have already appointed.

Given at our Court at Saint James's, the twenty-eighth day of June, one thousand eight hundred and eighty-six, in the fiftieth year of Our reign.

By Her Majesty's Command,
HUGH C. E. CHILDERS.

VICTORIA, R.

Victoria, by the Grace of God of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, Queen, Defender of the Faith:

To Our trusty and well-beloved Lionel Van Oven, Esquire, Greeting!

Whereas We did by Warrants under Our Royal Sign Manual, bearing date respectively the twentieth day of January, the fourth day of March, the twenty-seventh day of April, and the twenty-eighth day of June, one thousand eight hundred and eighty-six, appoint Our right trusty and well-beloved Wilbraham, Baron Egerton, one of the Ecclesiastical Commissioners for England, together with the several gentlemen therein respectively mentioned, or any five or more of them, to be Our Commissioners to inquire into the condition and education of the Blind, the Deaf and Dumb, and others:

And whereas one of Our Commissioners so appointed, namely, Charles Few, Esquire, has since deceased:

Now know ye, that We, reposing great confidence in you, do by these Presents appoint you, the said Lionel Van Oven, to be one of Our Commissioners for the purpose aforesaid in the room of the said Charles Few, deceased, in addition to and together with the other Commissioners whom We have already appointed.

Given at Our Court at Saint James's, the eleventh day of June, one thousand eight hundred and eighty-seven, in the fiftieth year of Our reign.

By Her Majesty's Command,
HENRY MATTHEWS.


[page 9]

TABLE OF HEADS

Para.
INTRODUCTION

REPORT
1
Preliminary Remarks6

BLIND

13
Accuracy of the Census14
General Condition17
Causes of Blindness and Remedial Suggestions20
State of the Law30
Classification of Blind32
I Education of the Blind under 2135
A In Day Schools41
B In Boarding Schools50
Technical Instruction of the Blind, when it should Commence53
II Adult Blind70
Occupations of the Adult Blind74
Condition of the Adult Blind87
Higher Education of the Blind90
Gardner's Trust for Blind99
Comparison of the Work of the Blind with that of Seeing Persons104
Suggestions for Improvement of the Condition of the Industrial Blind108
Saxon (Fürsorge) System118
III The Aged Blind124
Pensions146
Blind in their Private Homes162
Societies in Aid of the Blind163
Types170
Course of Instruction to the Blind191
Teachers in Schools193
Should they be "Blind"?196
Management of Institutions204
Cost of Maintenance in Institutions209
Election of Candidates211
Gymnasia and Physical Exercises212
State Inspection217
Proposals for State Aid220
Recommendations240
Industrial Training245
Endowments248
Pensions254
Pensions - Further Suggestions256
Saxon System260
Higher or Secondary School262
Blind in Workhouses263
Teachers264
Statistics265
Miscellaneous Suggestions266

DEAF AND DUMB
Census267
Classification of the Deaf283
Causes of Deafness293
Congenital Deafness295
Education of the Deaf - Preliminary Remarks315
History of the Education of the Deaf and Dumb319
Present State of Education324
School Board in London326
School Boards in the Provinces330
Guardians of the Poor and Education of Deaf Mutes331
Special Teaching Required335
I Institutions338
II Day Schools343
Age of Entry and Duration of School Life353
Course of Instruction356
Course of Study and Industrial Training on the Continent and in the United States365
Apprenticeship and Employment on leaving Institutions372
Systems of Teaching - Preliminary Remarks381
(1) The Sign and Manual System386
(2) The Oral System404
(3) The combined System429
Visible Speech447
Comparison of the Three Systems449
Higher Instruction for Deaf and Dumb493
Training Colleges504


[page 10]

Para.
Teachers516
State Aid529
Proposals for State Aid532
No. 1 Grants for Education of Deaf and Dumb Children on a Higher Scale than are given for Attendance in Public Elementary Schools532
No. 2 A grant in aid of the Education and Maintenance of a Deaf and Dumb Child in an Institution, or for Boarding out, and the Grant to come through the School Authority, and not through the Board of Guardians536
No. 3 Grants to Training Colleges for Teachers of the Deaf and Dumb542
Inspection544
Miscellaneous Remarks551
Time of Entry556
Should there be a Mixture of Sexes in the Schools?559
Gymnasia571
Statistics572
Medical Inspection578
Association of Deaf and Dumb with Blind581
Blind Deaf-mutes583
Organisation of Institutions587
Religious Instruction592
Head Masters597
Missions and Aid Societies for Adult Deaf and Dumb598
Literature and Press612
Conferences617
Summary of Recommendations620

IDIOTS AND IMBECILES

621
Total number623
State of the Law626
Character of the Class of Imbeciles646
Congenital and Non-Congenital Cases654
Causes of Idiocy655
How far Preventible or Capable of Diminution?658
Improvement or Education of Imbeciles660
Age of Entry679
Occupations681
Separate Schools681
Difficulty of Compulsion as regards Educational Conditions682
State Aid to Imbecile Institutions694
Cost of Inmates at Asylums696
Inspection697
Classification701
Supervision after Leaving Institution705
Feeble-minded Children709
Recommendations

SCOTLAND
State of the Law
BLIND725
Census726
Institutions729
Industrial Training Parochial Boards, etc.730
Adult Blind732
Endowments733
Missions, etc.735
DEAF AND DUMB
Census738
Institutions741
School Boards743
Adult Deaf and Dumb744
IMBECILES
State of the Law745
Institutions748

IRELAND
State of the Law756
Institutions or Day Schools759
State Aid in Ireland776
Adult Blind786
Aged and Infirm Blind790
Deaf and Dumb799
Schemes for Institutions803
Idiots and Imbeciles806
Major Trench's Commission819
Recommendations832

ISLE OF MAN

834

CHANNEL ISLANDS

840


[page 11]

REPORT

OF THE

ROYAL COMMISSION

ON

THE BLIND, THE DEAF AND DUMB, ETC

OF THE

UNITED KINGD0M


INTRODUCTION

The original Commission was issued on the 21st July 1885, to the Duke of Westminster (Chairman), the Bishop of London, the Right Hon. A. J. Mundella, M.P., Dr. Campbell, Dr. Armitage, and Dr. Tindal Robertson. Its terms of reference were to investigate and report upon the condition of the Blind in the United Kingdom, the various systems of education of the blind, elementary, technical and professional, at home and abroad, and the existing institutions for that purpose, the employments open to, and suitable for the blind and the means by which education may be extended so as to increase the number of blind persons qualified for such employments.

On the 13th of August, Admiral Sir E. S. Sotheby and Mr. Edmund C. Johnson, and on the 30th October Mr. W. A. Arrol and Dr. R. McDonnell, F.R.S., were added to the above Commission.

On the 20th January 1886 a fresh Commission was issued in lieu of the above. Its terms of reference were extended by the inclusion of the deaf and dumb and of such other cases as from special circumstances would seem to require exceptional methods of education. Lord Egerton of Tatton was appointed Chairman in the place of the Duke of Westminster, resigned, and the following new members were added to the Commission, viz., the Right Hon. Sir Lyon Playfair, K.C.B., M.P., the Right Hon. Sir Henry J. Selwin-Ibbetson, Bart., M.P., and Mr. B. St. John Ackers. The following gentlemen were subsequently appointed as Commissioners: on the 4th March 1886, Mr. Charles Few and Mr. William Woodall, M.P.; on the 27th April 1886, the Rev. W. B. Sleight; on the 28th June 1886, the Rev. C. M. Owen; and on the 11th June 1887, Mr. Lionel Van Oven.

We have to deplore the death of two of our colleagues during the course of the inquiry. Mr. Charles Few, who died on the 4th April 1887, had assisted regularly, and with great diligence, in our deliberations for a little over a year. More recently the death of Dr. McDonnell, F.R.S., has removed one of our most esteemed and valued colleagues. Dr. McDonnell, besides rendering great help during our general investigations, had spared no pains in obtaining and laying before us valuable information relative to all the branches of our inquiry in Ireland. We have every reason to believe that the Report met with his concurrence: his final suggestions and remarks were received a few days previously to his sudden death on the 6th May 1889.


[page 12]

REPORT

1. WE, Your Majesty's Commissioners appointed to inquire into the condition of the blind, the deaf and dumb, etc., do humbly certify to Your Majesty the proceedings under the said Commission in furtherance and execution of Your Majesty's commands.

2. In obedience to Your Majesty's commands, we have inquired into all the subjects submitted to us for consideration. We have held 116 sittings in London. We have called before us such persons as we judged likely to be able to give us information as to the blind and deaf and dumb, and have received from them, and from other persons in the United Kingdom, the Continent, the United States, and the Colonies, books, documents, and reports bearing on the subjects of our inquiry. Such of them as we think material are printed in the Appendix to our Report. Our thanks are due to those gentlemen connected with the education of the blind, and the deaf on the continent and in the United States who have freely furnished us with information, and particularly to Mr. Graham Bell, of Washington, D.C., who paid a special visit to England for the purpose of laying before us a mass of valuable returns, most of which, in answer to a circular letter of inquiry to the Superintendents and Principals of American and Canadian Schools for the Deaf, he had collected and printed in a volume for our use (Facts and Opinions relating to the Deaf).

8. We have issued letters of inquiry to a large number of blind persons in the United Kingdom, and have drawn up in a tabular form the results obtained from the answers to the questions.

4. We have visited the principal schools and establishments for the blind and deaf and dumb in the United Kingdom, and have, by personal inspection, made ourselves acquainted with the systems of education, elementary, technical, and professional, pursued in the leading establishments for the blind and deaf and dumb, not only in the United Kingdom, but also in Paris, Germany, Switzerland, and Italy. The notes taken on the occasion of these visits are printed in the Appendix to our Report.

5. We have inspected the six principal institutions in the United Kingdom,* where the imbeciles and idiots who are capable of receiving some elementary education are trained, and so far as relates to the subject matter of our inquiry we have examined witnesses thereon.

Preliminary Remarks

6. Before discussing in detail the condition of the several classes with which we are about to deal, we would make a few preliminary remarks.

7. The blind, deaf and dumb, and the educable class of imbeciles form a distinct group, which, if left uneducated, become not only a burden to themselves, but a weighty burden to the State. It is the interest of the State to educate them, so as to dry up as far as possible the minor streams which ultimately swell the great torrent of pauperism.

8. Indigence is found to exist in the great majority of the cases of persons so afflicted, the greater part of the population from which such cases proceed being so little removed from want that such a calamity is sufficient in itself to produce indigence.

9. It cannot be said that the group spoken of are as a rule impoverished by any fault of their own; to deal with them, therefore, liberally in such matters as education or out-door relief cannot be viewed as offering any reward to vice, folly,

*Royal Albert Asylum, Earlswood Asylum, Starcross, Darenth, near Dartford, Larbert (Scotland), Stewart Institution at Palmerston (Dublin).


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or improvidence. They are as distinct from the "pauper", in the ordinary sense, as the "pauper" is distinct from the "criminal", and, if possible, they should not be subject to any legal disqualification in consequence of their infirmity.

10. The education of the classes referred to is more expensive than that of ordinary children and in many instances (especially in rural districts) necessitates the expense of both education and maintenance.

11. Fear has been expressed that if the education of these afflicted classes be undertaken by the State, the effect might be to diminish that generous benevolence which has already done so much for them in this country. When it is remembered how much remains to be done for them it is obvious that, even were such aid given, there will still be room for the action of private benevolence, which experience shows to be often stimulated rather than discouraged by State aid, when judiciously given.

12. We shall now consider, in succession, their education, training, and general condition, dealing in three separate sections with the cases of these different classes in England and Wales, Scotland and Ireland. The recommendations, however, which we make are equally applicable to the whole of the United Kingdom, except on those points which demand different treatment and to which we have specially referred in our reports on Scotland and Ireland.

THE BLIND

13. The number of the blind, according to the last census in (A) England, is 22,832; (B) Scotland, 3,158; (C) Ireland, 6,111; (D) Isle of Man and Channel Islands, 195. Total, 32,296.

Accuracy of the Census

14. We have found it difficult to verify the number of the blind so as to test the accuracy of the census. The missions to the out-door blind for Glasgow and the West of Scotland, in the three Scottish counties of Lanark, Renfrew, and Ayr, from inquiries they have made, have found that the number of the blind is 173 in excess of the Government Return, owing probably to the fact that those who are of defective sight, but practically blind, have a disinclination to return themselves as such. There is, therefore, ground for supposing that the number must be sensibly larger than the census returns would lead us to infer.

15. The popular conception of the term "blindness" is "total blindness", but many are not included among the blind in the Census return, since they can see enough to walk about and distinguish light and darkness. As regards education, however, these are practically blind, and must be considered in the same category with those who are totally blind.

16. The blind children in England and Wales between the ages of 5 and 15 are 1,710 out of a total of 22,832. The number at school is estimated at 1,544, There is a large proportion of the blind who, from accidents or various causes, become blind as adults, especially between the ages of 45 and 65. From inquiries made by ourselves it would appear that the average age of the blind is 49, and the commencing age of blindness on the average is 31 years. In the opinion of two of the witnesses, the age is 33.

General Condition

17. The general condition of the blind is much improved since the time when it was the popular opinion that little could be done for them. But there is still much wanting to improve their condition and to give them such an education and technical training as will enable them to. become useful members of society, and to earn, as far as possible, their own living.

18. The education and care of the blind have been entirely left to private charity, with the exception of those who have been recipients of parochial assistance, and those who have availed themselves of the recently established school board classes.

19. Notwithstanding the large funds which are devoted to the assistance of the blind, and the great amount of attention and care which they receive from voluntary efforts and organisations employing paid agents, your Commissioners feel that the


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present condition of the blind may be considerably ameliorated, and that both by legislative action and by the improvement of existing organisations, they may be rendered more independent of charitable aid than they are at present.

Causes of Blindness and Remedial Suggestions

20. Many causes of blindness are preventable. Blindness has not increased in England, comparing the numbers of the blind with those of the general population; on the contrary, there has been a proportionate decrease of the blind to the general population with each successive decade, the number of blind per million persons being in 1851, 1,021; in 1861, 964; in 1871, 951; and in 1881, 879. There has been probably an increase of blindness among the workers in certain trades, such as iron-puddlers, glass-blowers, and railway engine-drivers, yet on the other hand there has been a diminution or a shortening of the period of blindness, due to the progress of ophthalmic science, vaccination, and greater care taken in factories and workshops.

Injuries to the eyes in males are chiefly accidents occurring while at work; in women and children mostly purely accidental, or produced by wilful violence. ... The particular kinds of injury may be classified as follows: Burns from fire, acids, corrosives and lime, may be held to cause 12 per cent of all injuries; accidents from flying pieces of stone or chips of metal amounting to 58 per cent (Dr. Glascott 1886).
21. Great danger to sight after injury of one eye arises from the risk of sympathetic affection of the other; according to Cohn 24.2 per cent of cases of blindness of one eye are due to direct violence, and a large number of these are followed by total blindness from sympathetic affection of the second eye at a later period. Sympathetic inflammation is almost exclusively caused by an injury of one eye, and in such cases inflammation of the eyeball is an ever present menace to the sight of the remaining eye.

22. Total blindness ensues in from 4 to 4.5 per cent of all injuries to one eye.

In Lancashire accidents from shuttles flying out of the loom are unfortunately very frequent, and generally are of a very destructive character. Of late years, by the introduction of shuttle guards, something has been done to reduce their frequency. At the Royal Eye Hospital, Manchester, during 1885, they had had only nine cases of shuttle accident, as against 21 the year before. (In 1886 the number of such accidents was 11.)

The systematic use of strong protective glasses, made either of talc or mica, if glass should be considered too fragile, or the enforced use of fine wire goggles, would in some trades greatly reduce the liability to accidental injury. ... Many an injured eye is irretrievably lost, bringing the misfortune of blindness upon its fellow simply through the application of domestic remedies, such as the inevitable poultice, be it of linseed, bread, or rotten apples, until secondary inflammation has produced such a disorganisation of the contents of the eye as to render skilled treatment useless. ... Early surgical treatment, then, is of the highest importance in persons who have lost an eye by injury. An eye lost from any cause whatever, being prone to set up sympathetic inflammation of the sound eye from a variety of slight causes, should, as a matter of precaution, be carefully watched, and, if at all irritable, be at once removed to prevent affection of the sound eye.

23. Granular ophthalmia is a frequent cause of blindness, and is very infectious, it occurs in the case of those who live in badly ventilated dwellings, badly lighted rooms, as, for instance, among the crowded workshops for slop clothing at the East End of London, and at one time it prevailed among the inmates of Irish Workhouses; it is preventable under proper sanitary conditions.

24. This form of ophthalmia has been at times epidemic in large schools and in armies, and has been stated to have been first introduced into Europe on the return of Napoleon and the French army from Egypt. This historical assumption, though generally accepted, is, however, contested by the Professor of Military Surgery, Army Medical School, Netley. We believe that in consequence of improved surgical knowledge this disease no longer spreads, and no case of loss of eyesight from that cause resulted in our recent occupation of Egypt.

25. Another frequent cause is the inflammation of the eyes of new-born infants, which can be prevented, and, if taken in time, cured. It has been found by the Ophthalmological Society that 30 per cent of the inmates of asylums (i.e. schools for the blind) are blinded from purulent ophthalmia in early life; and about 7,000 persons in the United Kingdom have lost their sight from that cause.

Mr. Brudenell Carter recommends -

A weak solution of perchloride of mercury as the best preventive in such cases.
Mr. Hulke prefers alum.

Dr. Glascott states that -

"It has been distinctly proved in the large maternity and foundling hospitals of the Continent, that the percentage of cases of purulent ophthalmia in the new-born can be materially diminished by simply cleansing

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the eyes of all children with clean water as soon as they are born. More recently the number of sufferers has been further diminished by the use of antiseptics, such as weak solutions of boracic or salicylic acid, a two per-cent solution of carbolic acid, however, giving the best results. As a further development of the preventive plan of treatment, the method of Crédé has been introduced. It has the merit of being extremely simple and very efficient. It consists in washing the infant's eyes with pure water as soon as it is born, and then by means of a drop-tube instilling a single drop of a two per-cent solution of nitrate of silver into the eyes. This simple method of prevention should be known to, and carried out by every, midwife in the country, and what is more, parents should insist upon it being done.

The information might be circulated by the sanitary authorities or through the Post Office.

26. In Germany special precautions are enforced by law on the midwives. In Saxony as throughout Germany -

"(1) Women who have passed through an obstetric school, and have obtained the prescribed certificate of professional competency, may be licensed to practise in the particular districts in which they have a permanent residence. The midwives so appointed are bound by oath to the conscientious discharge of their duties; they may not practise except in the district to which they are assigned, or without specific appointment. Lists of the local midwives are kept by the official medical men of the districts.

(2) ... Midwives are expressly prohibited from treating any derangement of the eyes or eyelids, however slight. On the appearance of the first symptoms of eye disease, the midwives are to represent to parents, or others, that medical assistance is urgently required, or, if necessary, they are to report to the local authorities and the district doctor. Neglect of these regulations makes them liable to punishment.

27. The Society for the Prevention of Blindness, etc., has done very excellent work in drawing up and distributing, gratuitously, advice to mothers.

28. There is a good deal of defective sight and myopia (short-sightedness) in ordinary schools, and a periodical inspection of elementary schools has been recommended as useful, not merely in detecting myopia but in detecting the opposite condition of hypermetropia. Again and again children are blamed because they will not do their work, when they simply cannot see, and need glasses.

29. It has been stated as desirable that a more special knowledge of ophthalmic surgery among general practitioners should be encouraged. We, therefore, learn with satisfaction that a general knowledge of ophthalmic surgery, among medical practitioners, is regarded as an essential part of a professional education, and that the treatment of the diseases of the eye is increasingly commanding attention, in the general infirmaries of the country, as well as in the special hospitals.

State of the Law

30. We proceed first to state shortly the existing state of the law as to the education of the blind in England and Wales:-

ENGLAND AND WALES

Poor shall be maintained by their Parents or Children
43 Eliz. c. 2. s. 6. And be it further enacted, That the father and grandfather, and the mother and grandmother, and the children, of every poor, old, blind, lame, and impotent person, or other poor person not able to work, being of a sufficient ability, shall, at their own charges, relieve and maintain every such poor person.
Justices in Petty Sessions empowered in like manner to order Relief by Parents, etc.
59 Geo. 3. c. 12. s. 26. And whereas by the said Act, passed in the forty-third year of the reign of Queen Elizabeth, for the relief of the poor, it was enacted, etc ...

And whereas it is expedient to extend the power which is by the said Act given to justices in their general quarter sessions to justices in petty sessions: Be it further enacted, that it shall be lawful for any two or more of His Majesty's justices of the peace for the county or other jurisdiction in which any such sufficient person shall dwell, and they are hereby empowered, in any petty session, to make such assessment and order for the relief of every poor, old, blind, lame, impotent, or other poor person not able to work, upon and by the father, grandfather, mother, grandmother, or child (being of sufficient ability) of every such poor person, as may by virtue of the said Act be made by the justices in their general quarter sessions; and that every such assessment and order of two or more justices in any petty sessions shall have the like force and effect as if the same were made by the justices in their general quarter sessions; and the disobedience thereof shall be punishable in like manner.

Poor Persons liable for Relief to Wife or Children unless Blind or Deaf and Dumb
4 & 5 Will. 4. c. 76. s. 56. And be it further enacted, That from and after the passing of this Act all relief given to or on account of the wife, or to or on account of any child or children under the age of sixteen, not being blind or deaf and dumb, shall be considered as given to the husband of such wife, or to the father of such child or children, as the case may be, and any relief given to or on account of any child or children under the age of sixteen of any widow shall be considered as given to such widow: Provided always, that nothing herein contained shall discharge the father and grandfather, mother and grandmother, of any poor child from their liability to relieve and maintain any such poor child in pursuance of the provisions of a certain Act of Parliament passed in the forty-third year of the reign of Her late Majesty Queen Elizabeth, intituled "An Act for the Relief of the Poor".

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Guardians may maintain and educate Deaf and Dumb or Blind Poor Children in Certified Schools
25 & 26 Vict. (1862) c. 43. s. 1. The guardians of any parish or union may send any poor child to any school certified as hereinafter mentioned, and supported wholly or partially by voluntary subscriptions, the managers of which shall be willing to receive such child, and may pay out of the funds in their possession the expenses incurred in the maintenance, clothing, and education of such child therein during the time such child shall remain at such school (not exceeding the total sum which would have been charged for the maintenance of such child if relieved in the workhouse during the same period), and in the conveyance of such child to and from the same, and in the case of death, the expenses of his or her burial.

9. No child shall be sent under this Act to any school which is conducted on the principles of a religious denomination to which such child does not belong.

10. ... The word "school" shall extend to any institution established for the instruction of blind, deaf, dumb, lame, deformed, or idiotic persons, but shall not apply to any certified reformatory school.

Guardians may provide for Maintenance and Education of Blind or Deaf and Dumb Adults
30 & 31 Vict. (1867) c. 106. s. 21. The guardians may provide for the reception, maintenance, and instruction of any adult pauper, being blind or deaf and dumb in any hospital or institution established for the reception of persons suffering under such infirmities, and may pay the charges incurred in the conveyance of such pauper to and from the same, as well as those incurred in his maintenance, support, and instruction therein.
Guardians may send Deaf-Mute or Blind Children to Uncertified Schools
31 & 32 Vict. (1868) c. 122. s. 42. The guardians of any union or parish may, with the approval of the Poor Law Board, send any poor deaf and dumb or blind child to any school fitted for the reception of such child, though such school shall not have been certified under the provisions of the Act of the 25th and 26th years of Victoria, chapter 43.
Guardians may subscribe towards support of Institutions, Associations, etc.
42 & 43 Vict. (1879) c. 54. s. 10. Whereas by section 4 of the Poor Law Amendment Act 1851, guardians are authorised, with such consent as is therein mentioned, to subscribe towards the support and maintenance of any public hospital or infirmary as therein mentioned; and it is expedient to extend the said section. Be it therefore enacted as follows:-

The provisions of the said section shall extend to authorise the guardians, with such consent as is therein mentioned, to subscribe towards any asylum or institution for blind persons, or for deaf and dumb persons, or for persons suffering from any permanent or natural infirmity, or towards any association or society for aiding such persons, or for providing nurses, or for aiding girls or boys in service, or towards any other asylum or institution which appears to the guardians, with such consent as aforesaid, to be calculated to render useful aid in the administration of the relief of the poor.

Provided always, that nothing herein contained shall authorise any subscription to any asylum or institution unless the Local Government Board be satisfied that the paupers under the guardians have, or could have, assistance therein in case of necessity.

Guardians may pay a reasonable charge required by a certified school for Blind or Deaf-Mute Children
45 & 46 Vict. (1882) c. 58. s. 13. The guardians of any union, who send any pauper child to a school certified under the Act of the 25th and 26th years of the reign of Her present Majesty, cap. 43, may pay the reasonable expenses incurred in the maintenance, clothing, and education of such child whilst in such school, to an amount not exceeding such rate of payment as may be sanctioned by the Local Government Board, for pauper children sent to such school, anything contained in the said Act to the contrary notwithstanding.
31. It has been brought to our notice that in several cases where the parents of deaf and dumb or blind children were unable to afford the cost of their being educated and maintained in proper institutions, the guardians considered themselves exempted from the duty of educating the child at the cost of the union under the above Acts, on the ground that the parents were not paupers. We accordingly requested the Local Government Board to furnish us with their interpretation of the law on this point. The annexed letter shows that it is not a condition precedent to such action on the part of the guardians that the parents should be paupers.

Local Government Board, Whitehall, S.W.,
February 21, 1888.

Sir,

I am directed by the Local Government Board to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 28th ultimo, asking, on behalf of the Royal Commission on the Blind, the Deaf and Dumb, etc., the Board's view as to the power of guardians to contribute to the maintenance in suitable institutions of deaf and dumb children whose parents are not paupers. The Board direct me to state that in their opinion it is competent to the guardians to send to a suitable school a deaf and dumb or blind child whose parent, though poor, may not be a pauper in receipt of relief. The approval of this Board is, however, necessary to the sending of the child unless the school has been certified under the 25 & 26 Vict. c. 43. (see s. 42 of the 31 & 32 Vict. s. 122).

Moreover, it appears to the Board that, having regard to s. 56 of the 4 & 5 Will, 4. c. 76. relief given to or on account of a deaf and dumb or blind child is not relief to the father of such child.

The Board may add that the power given to the guardians in this matter should, of course, only be exercised when the parent is unable to pay for the child's maintenance, education, etc. in the school.

I am, etc.
(Signed) S. B. PROVIS,
Assistant Secretary.

The Secretary to the
Royal Commission on the Blind, the Deaf and Dumb, etc.,
6, Old Palace Yard, S.W.


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Classification of Blind

32. In considering the condition of the blind it may be convenient to divide them into three main classes:-

I. From birth up to 21.
II. From 21 to 50.
III. From 50 upwards.

33. There are 61 institutions for the blind in the United Kingdom, which may be classified as follows:-

Schools for resident pupils9
Workshops, mostly for non-residents23
Combination of the two (both workshops and schools)26
Homes or asylums3
Total61

34. Most of them have been visited by this Commission.

I.

Education of the Blind under 21

35. The problem to be solved in the education of the blind, so as to enable them to earn their living, is not only how to teach them but what to teach them.

36. There is a general feeling in favour of compulsory education of the blind, and their attendance being enforced as early as that of other children; but there is great difference of opinion in what way children should be taught. In Scotland and the North of England the opinion of the blind is now in favour of the blind being taught in board schools with the seeing, and of separating education from technical instruction. Our report on the different schools and workshops visited shows what the practice now is. At present there are Board school classes for the blind in some of the large towns, and these are gradually increasing in number, but most of the blind of school age are in institutions, though, unfortunately, some are not educated at all, in consequence of the present unsatisfactory state of the law.

37. It is the unanimous opinion of the London teachers of the Home Teaching Society that, say to the age of ten, children should be educated during a portion of their time with the sighted, and the Charity Organization Society's enquiry long ago came to the same conclusion.

38. Some of the witnesses recommend that -

Blind children should be sent as early as possible, at least after seven or eight, to an ordinary sighted school, if not before to an infant school, and kept there at least till ten years of age. Objections may be raised by the teachers of ordinary day schools, to their assuming this additional responsibility, but their objections may be and have been overcome by a number of teachers who have taken the trouble to learn Braille and other types, and so qualify themselves for the work as not to interfere in any way with the performance of their ordinary duties.

The fears that "the blind might be subjected to ill-treatment from their sighted play fellows have been shown by experience to be groundless; on the contrary, owing to the compassion with which they are regarded, they meet with the greatest kindness" (Report of the Charity Organization Society).
39. The free intercourse with the seeing gives courage and self-reliance to the blind, and a healthy stimulus which enables them to compete more successfully with the seeing in after life than those who have been brought up altogether in blind institutions.

40. We recommend that the provisions of the Education Acts be extended to the blind, and that the compulsory attendance at a school or institution be enforced up to the age of 16. The evidence tends to show that blind children should be educated in either of the following ways:

A In Day Schools

41 (a) In rural schools -

The teacher must have some knowledge of the Braille or some raised type, and the child should have acquired such knowledge either at a preparatory school or by being taught by its parents or by a district visitor, or, as in Scotland, by an agent of the outdoor mission to the blind.


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42 (b) In towns -

The board school is suitable for all those children who have good health, live at a convenient distance from the school, and for whom arrangements can be made that they have a guide to take them to the school.

43. But where, as at Sunderland, the children cannot be compelled to attend in consequence of their residence beyond the two mile limit, we think it would be necessary to extend the statutory limit of compulsory attendance, and that in such cases the children of necessitous parents, as at Berlin, should have their fares by train or tramcar paid for by the school authority.

44. In April 1875, the London School Board appointed an Instructor of the Blind (Mr. Finchard) who, with an assistant, acted until the year 1879, when the Board engaged a lady as Superintendent of the Instruction of the Blind.

45. The blind children usually attend the ordinary day schools, and share as far as possible, in the instruction there given; but they also, on specified days, receive special instruction at centres, of which there are 18. The attendance at these centres ranges from three to 15. The total number under instruction at Lady Day 1888 was 132. At the centres the children are taught reading and writing by means of the "Braille" system, and reading by the aid of Moon's type; written arithmetic by means of Taylor's arithmetic boards; and geography by the aid of relief maps and globes. Special attention is given to the teaching of mental arithmetic.

46. The children are examined with the other scholars at the annual Government examinations of the ordinary day schools which they attend.

47. At Lady Day 1888 the staff consisted of a superintendent and five female assistants, all of whom had been trained at the Royal Normal College.

48. The school boards at Bradford, Cardiff, Sunderland, and Glasgow have also undertaken the education of the blind within their districts, and 61 children in all are under instruction in these towns, 28 being educated in different schools in Glasgow alone. In most cases the children follow the ordinary time-table with their seeing companions, and associate with them both in school time and play time, Bradford and Sunderland being the only exceptions to this. The average nett cost of instruction is 6 15s. 4d. per head per annum, the higher cost being mainly due to the fact that one or more special teachers are engaged to instruct the blind children. On the occasion of the visit of the Commissioners to Glasgow, the school board and their teachers expressed themselves as satisfied with the success of the experiment of educating the blind with the seeing in the board schools.

49. No grant is awarded by Government for the distinctive instruction which is given either to the blind, or to the deaf and dumb.

B In Boarding Schools

50. There must always be some blind who from physical weakness, delicacy of constitution, and other causes, need the fostering care of an institution. It is also contended that it is important to give the blind a special training in sense of touch, which is not so readily given in sighted schools, and in many cases it is necessary to send a delicate or neglected child to an institution where it will be well cared for and trained.

51. It is probable also that, under the institution system, children other than those mentioned in 42 (b) can be educated and maintained at very little more expense than it would cost to educate them in day classes attached to board schools, where they would have to be either boarded out or placed in homes.

52. In cases where there are not sufficient blind children to form a class, the guardians can at present, with the consent of the Local Government Board, subscribe to any blind institution, or may maintain and educate any poor child there. This power is only permissive, and although largely exercised by the guardians, is not sufficiently put into operation, and should, in our opinion, be transferred to the school authority or county council, and be made compulsory, as soon as there are suitable and sufficient day schools or institutions to which the children can be sent.*

*According to the Parliamentary Return, No. 326 of 1887, there were 315 children of school age receiving indoor relief and 21 receiving outdoor relief from the poor rates in England and Wales on the 2nd September 1887. No fewer than 301 of these were receiving instruction in special or elementary schools; 35 not under instruction were mostly weak-minded children.


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Technical instruction of the Blind, when should it commence?

53. There is some difference of opinion as to the time when industrial training should commence, and some confusion naturally arises between the technical teaching in school, which might and ought to be common to all, and the teaching of a trade which can only be properly taught in a workshop.

54. There is often a prejudice against the work of the blind, and this we believe to be the result of their imperfect instruction.

55. In the north of England it is advocated that the ordinary education and some education in music in an elementary school or institution should be given up to 14 or 15, and the tastes and natural inclinations of the pupils studied; after that age, if the pupil has evinced any musical talent, he should be sent to a special musical school, or, if he has a mechanical turn, to a workshop to learn industrial work.

56. We think that after blind children have passed through the ordinary standards they should receive technical training in an institution or elsewhere from 12 to 16 years of age.

57. If it be determined that basket-making should be the occupation of a blind boy, it seems desirable that he should begin at 13 or 14, as it takes about four or five years to learn the trade thoroughly. If, however, it be intended to train him in music, instruction should begin as early as possible.

58. In Edinburgh boys of 16, who have left the school at Craigmillar, and wish to become workers in the outside workshop, are transferred to a boarding house connected with the institution, unless they have parents or friends to board with.

59. In some institutions, where a school department and a work department are combined, the children occasionally intermingle very much with the workmen. We believe this to be objectionable, and we agree with the suggestion that it would be advisable to separate the educational department up to 15 or 16 from the work department; so as to prevent boys of 12 and 13 mixing with older boys and men. In many instances this has been already carried out.

60. At present, when the blind leave institutions, which are more or less educational, and which they are often compelled to leave about the age of 16, their industrial training is often imperfect, and in many cases they are unable to earn their own livelihood, and there is a great want of some place where they can learn their trade thoroughly, and practice it; likewise those who have failed to get into institutions, or have obtained what education they can, and have no friends to assist them, cannot earn their livelihood, as there are not sufficient workshops where they can be taught or practise such industrial training as they may have picked up, and the result is they fail to get work, and they take to begging, playing musical instruments in the streets, or in public houses, or sitting reading the Bible aloud to passers by and asking for alms.

61. We think that from 16 to 21 the school authority should have the power and duty to assist liberally all necessitous blind persons to maintain themselves while learning a trade.

62. Out of 389 trained persons whose cases were inquired into by Mr. G. M. Tait, only 155 were earning their living by occupations, which they were taught in institutions. Even those who have been well trained and learnt a trade, such as basketmaking, brush-making, etc., find great difficulty in carrying it on at their own homes, or in selling their work when it is made. Even if they work at home they generally earn less than in a workshop, and seldom are able to earn enough to get their own livelihood.

63. The wider inquiry which was set on foot by the Commission with the object of ascertaining much the same point, viz., what proportion of the blind follow the trade taught to them in the institution where they may have been brought up, furnished the following results:-

64. Out of 1,267 blind men who had learnt trades in various institutions in the United Kingdom, only 734, or 58 per cent, proved, according to their own account, to be following the trade which they had learnt at those institutions. Of these 1,267


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men, about 15 per cent were earning under 5s. per week, about 25 per cent were earning between 5s. and 10s. per week, about 16 per cent were earning between 10s. and 15s. per week, and about 10 per cent were earning above 15s. per week. But the 42 per cent who had found themselves compelled to seek other means of livelihood, were earning far smaller wages, in the aggregate, than the 58 per cent who were still following the trades taught to them at the institution.

65. Assuming that these statistics hold true of the blind at large, it must be admitted that the fact that 42 per cent of those trained in institutions find themselves unable to continue to practice the trade taught to them, while about 34 per cent of the remainder do work, but nevertheless earn less than 5s. per week, indicates either a great deal of indifferent teaching or want of proper facilities for working and disposing of their work.

66. The same inquiry has thrown a good deal of light on the present condition of the blind. Stated briefly, it may be described as an endeavour to ascertain the leading facts in the history of a large number of the blind, i.e., more than one-sixth of the total number in the United Kingdom. We have received nearly 6,000 replies, and these voluminous statistics may be taken, in our opinion, to be a fair specimen of the condition of things which prevails generally among the blind of the United Kingdom. The detailed tables will be found in the Appendix.

67. Out of the total number, 5,848, who replied to our questions, no less than 4,605 declare their inability to maintain themselves without charitable assistance, while only 959 state that they can so maintain themselves; 3,282 state that they earn nothing at all. The largest number of those who earn anything are engaged in basket-making (21.5 per cent); then follow music and piano tuning (8.5 per cent), brush-making (7.5 per cent), chair-caning and cane work (6.5 per cent), mat-making (2.75 per cent), mattress-making (2.5 per cent), rope and twine spinning, etc. (1.5 per cent), weaving (0.7 per cent), and other minor occupations. Of those who do something for themselves, 1,549, work out, but as many as 789 work at home, while a small number, 109, work out and at home as well.

68. As may be observed from the above, handicrafts and petty trades are the favourite occupations, and the average wages earned in these are stated to be 7s. 1d. per week. The number of those gaining their livelihood as organists, pianists, violinists, piano-tuners, and music teachers is far smaller, but the earnings, 14s. 6d., are more than double those of the former class, while the highest earnings of all, 17s. 4d., are gained by missionaries, Scripture readers, visitors, teachers, collectors, and the like.

69. We believe in these returns there is a tendency on the part of the blind to understate their earnings. We found this to be the case in our personal inquiries in visits to workshops. We have not thought it desirable to state the sums which are professedly gained by begging, but consider them to be larger than the blind themselves state.

II.

Adult Blind

70. Besides those who have become blind in early youth, with which class we have previously dealt, a large proportion of blind persons become blind between 21 and 50 from accidents and various other causes, and but few institutions give industrial instruction to such persons, who specially deserve encouragement, as they are often those who are most anxious to learn and find occupation, and they, as a rule, work with more energy than those who have been blind from childhood.

71. It has been mentioned to us as desirable, and it appears to us reasonable, that in order to enable them to earn their own livelihood, assistance should be given, while learning a trade at an institution, to persons losing their sight in adult life, in the same way and on the same principle as to those at an earlier age during their industrial training.

72. This would involve a change in the law in order to compel the school authority, on application, to contribute for this purpose, as the guardians can at present. Such assistance should be given for a reasonable time for learning a trade, and should be forfeited in cases of idleness or misconduct. These blind persons should also be taught to read some raised type.


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73. At Leicester, and other places, the guardians and the local charity contribute to those learning a trade for three years, and at Sunderland outdoor relief has been given to such men on condition that they will attend at the institution in the town and learn trades. At the Berners Street Institution in London the same arrangement prevails, and the guardians contribute 6s. a week for the same purpose. A striking instance of the desirableness of such an arrangement is given by a witness from Sunderland:-

We had one man (not totally blind but quite too blind to obtain employment in an ordinary way) who was 19 years in the workhouse. They paid for him for one year 7s. per week, and he earned 22s. 3d. per week on the average in 1885. He had been (previously to that) a burden on the rates for 19 years.
Occupations of the Adult Blind

74. The industrial occupations of the blind are limited, the work for which they are best suited is not always that which pays best, owing to the competition of sighted labour. Basket making is probably the employment most suited to country districts, or to places where there is a demand for rough baskets, such as fruit or potato hampers, or skips used in the cotton trade, as they can be as well made by the blind as by the sighted. Fancy and common baskets are made so cheaply in Germany, and admitted free to this country, that it is difficult for the blind to compete with the foreigner in that branch of labour. Chair-caning is the most simple, and can be learned in a short time by both sexes. Next comes mat-making, though the competition of prisons makes it difficult to produce mats at a profit; weaving, brushmaking, knitting, etc. In some workshops mattress-making, rope-making, and, in the seaport towns, the manufacture of shipfenders and rope mats has been successfully introduced.

75. The Government have in various cases given the Institutions orders for the Post Office baskets and their repair, but no special favour is shown them. The blind have to make their tenders in the open market, and often fail to get the orders.

76. Music seems specially suited to the blind, and undoubtedly affords to them a large amount of solace and enjoyment; it should, therefore, form a part of the curriculum of every blind school. All, however, have not a gift for music, and the study should not be persevered in as a means of living, except in special and promising cases; and although probably half the total number of the blind could be taught fairly well some branch of music, the competition with sighted musicians is so great that only exceptionally good training can lead to success, and many from various causes fail to earn a livelihood or obtain a situation. It is, therefore, desirable that, except in special cases, or where music is selected as a profession, everyone not physically disqualified should receive manual training.

77. It is maintained by Dr. Campbell that unless music is combined with a good general education, and very excellent physical training, it is almost worthless for the purpose of earning a livelihood, and if it be taught only as a means of recreation, it is often apt to lead the blind into the practice of playing in the streets, or in public houses, and hence into dissolute habits.

78. On the other hand, where a good musical training, combined with good general education and good physical training has been given, a large number of the past pupils are earning considerable sums and gaining their livelihood.

In all, 130 pupils have had a sufficient length of training to enable them to undertake business for themselves, and may thus be regarded as a practical test of our work. Of these, 3 are failures, 11 have died, 16 who have recently left the College are already earning something, and their work is increasing, 19 have been moderately successful, and 81 have been highly successful, earning from 60 to 400 a year. Several of the young women have earned from 70 to 100 a year, and the aggregate earnings of 100 ex-pupils in the year 1886, amounted to close upon 10,000 (excerpts from Norwood College Reports 1885 and 1886).

79. Piano tuning opens a fair career for those who are well trained, and we have had evidence that there are many organists in this country who have obtained situations and are able to support themselves.

80. The success of pupils in after life, who have gone through a musical training, very much depends on the nature of the teaching and the care which is taken to find employment for them. In Paris two-thirds of the school hours of those intended for the musical profession are devoted to musical training.

81. During the last 10 years 370 pupils have been admitted to the "Institution Nationale pour les jeunes aveugles" at Paris, but of these 30 have died during school life. Of the remaining 340, 92 have been sent home on account of being infirm, unintelligent, or otherwise incapable of receiving instruction, and 45 on account of


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misconduct, while 15 have been withdrawn by their parents before the completion of their studies. Of the 205 who have left school, more or less completely educated, and with whom the Institution is able to keep in touch, 87 are organists or professors of music, and most of these understand tuning in addition, and can practise the same if required; 7 males and females are professors in institutions; 53 are professed tuners of pianofortes; 34 (males and females) are artisans; 17 are not engaged in business at all, having private means; and 7 have failed to make use of their knowledge and acquirements.

Therefore from 370 blind of school age, taken at hazard, there are 198 who are fit to follow a profession or trade, say, 54 per cent. There are 87 who are fit to be organists or professors of music, say, 23 per cent. But, if one takes into consideration only those who have had sufficient aptitude to enable them to receive instruction, and have finished their course of studies, one ought to consider the case of only 188 out of 370, and out of these 188 there are 87 who can follow a musical profession, say, 46 per cent; and if the tuners are counted as following a musical profession, the total is 87 plus 53 = 140, say, 74 per cent.

Inasmuch as the chief thing to be done is to find out which are the professions that are best for the blind to follow, it appears clear to me that these last (46 per cent and 74 per cent) are the proportions of which we ought to take account, The other cases, being just as incapable of becoming chair caners as they would be of becoming musicians, must be left out (letter from M. Martin, 20 February 1889).

82. It is said by M. de la Sizeranne that in France since 1840 music has been successfully practised in a great number of instances in addition to manual occupations.

83. It is only on the condition that the blind are equal to or superior in ability to the seeing that an appeal can be made to the general public to employ the blind as musicians; nor can they rely on the preference which, as blind, they can only claim from the sympathy naturally accorded to them on account of their unfortunate position.

84. It is also stated by M. de la Sizeranne, that to obtain a good musical education, the blind pupils must be (1) under training for at least nine years; (2) should form part of a large school of trained musicians so as to form a complete orchestra from their own body; and (3) be in the centre of a community containing the highest artistic talent.

85. These conditions are obviously difficult of attainment, and can only be hoped for in some great central institution in or near a large town.

86. On considering how far the teaching of industrial occupations is suitable to the blind as a class, as compared with a musical training, we are disposed to think that industrial training is more useful to a large number of the blind than that of music, as there is more certainty of employment for them. The profession of music, however, is one that offers the greatest prizes to those who have ability and application, and which it is a legitimate object of ambition for them to pursue.

Condition of the Adult Blind

87. In 1866, according to Dr. Armitage, it was found that the blind visited in connection with the Indigent Blind Visiting Society, whether trained in institutions or untrained, had scarcely anything to do, that they were to a very great extent idle, mendicants, or depending on charitable relief in some form, either from the guardians or from private societies or individuals, that in fact they were not earning their own living. In the case of musicians, as far as it was possible to ascertain, only 1 in 200 of all the pupils trained in the institutions seemed to be able to support themselves fully by the profession of music, while in Paris the education of the blind as musicians was infinitely superior to anything that we then had in England, and 30 per cent were able fully to support themselves by the profession of music.

88. This is probably not an accurate description of the general condition of all the blind at that time, since there were institutions which in London and the large towns gave industrial training and some knowledge of music to their pupils. But the conviction that great improvement might be made in the education of the blind resulted in the foundation of the Norwood College.

89. While we acknowledge the great services rendered to the education of the blind by the institution at Norwood, we do not think that all blind institutions should be formed exactly on the same model.

Higher Education of the Blind

90. It has been contended that there should be the same facilities given to the blind to rise from the elementary schools as are given to the seeing.


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91. We are of opinion that, from the primary schools, they should go to institutions or secondary schools. In these it would be seen which children have musical, technical, or literary tastes; they would fall naturally into classes which could enable the musicians to become either tuners or artists; the technical pupils would become either artisans or foremen in their trades; the literary would be ready to receive the higher education of the university.

92. In order to encourage such pupils, and place them on a level with the seeing, there must be educational grants and scholarships.

93. There will always be some among the blind who are suffering from want of the physical strength associated with the causes which produce blindness, but the blind boy with healthy body and brain ought to have the same chances as his seeing brother, as he is the same except in his being heavily handicapped in the race for knowledge or distinction by his loss of sight.

94. There is want of a higher class college which should receive a State grant, where classical, mathematical, and general literature can be effectively taught, to prepare a youth for the universities.

95. There have been many distinguished blind men who have become such in mature years, but up to the present time no attempt has been made to give a higher education to those blind from childhood in any college except Worcester.

96. The education given at Worcester seems by the results to be calculated to fit the pupils for the university, some of them having overcome all the disadvantages of their position, and passed through an university education even with distinction; one who gave evidence before us has become a solicitor in good practice, and several have taken Holy Orders, and have been appointed to livings.

97. The college at present is on a small scale, and not sufficiently of a public character to justify our recognition of it as such. But it has done good work during the last 20 years as the only college for the higher education of the blind, and we have ascertained that legal steps are now being taken to convert it into a public institution.

98. We think it questionable whether, in the interest of the pupils, such a college should be isolated as it is at present, and not rather attached to one of our existing collegiate institutions for the seeing, either at one of our university centres, or in the neighbourhood of London.

Gardner's Trust for Blind

99. The blind are largely indebted to the funds of the Gardner's Trust established in 1882. It has been of the greatest service in supporting existing charities, in encouraging the foundation of new ones, and in assisting the blind to help themselves.

100. In order that the fund should be employed in the best possible way, and in accordance with the wishes of the testator, the matter was referred to the Court of Chancery, where a scheme for the administration of the fund, dated January 20th, 1882, was drawn up and approved, of which the following are the four general headings as to the distribution of the income of the fund, after payment of the necessary expenses of management:-

1. Two-ninths shall be applied in instructing the blind in the profession of music.

2. Two-ninths shall be applied in instructing the blind in suitable trades, handicrafts, and professions, other than the profession of music.

3. Two-ninths shall be applied in instructing the blind in suitable trades, handicrafts, and professions, including the profession of music.

4. Three-ninths shall be applied in providing pensions and donations, and generally in such other manner as the Committee shall think best for the benefit of the blind.

101. Since receiving evidence from the secretary of the Gardner Trust, a resolution has been passed by the Committee of the Trust, the effect of which will be (if sanctioned) to alter the third and fourth headings of the scheme to the following effect:
3. Two other of such nine equal parts shall be applied in instructing the poor blind in suitable trades, handicrafts, and professions, including the profession of music, and generally in such other manner as the Committee shall think best for the benefit of the blind.

4. The remaining three of such nine equal parts shall be applied in providing pensions or donations for the poor and deserving blind.


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102. The Charity Commissioners have postponed the consideration of this application till the publication of this Report.

103. In administering the fund, the Committee desire as far as possible:-

(a) To make grants from this fund the means of eliciting the contributions or assistance of other persons and societies.

(b) To give to the persons aided such assistance as will call out their own exertions, and put them in the way of maintaining themselves; but this is not meant to apply to the cases of persons who are considered fit subjects for pensions.

(c) To avoid such application of the fund as will merely do that which would otherwise be done by the parochial rates.

No person is disqualified from receiving assistance by reason of his religious opinions; but no person can receive assistance unless the Committee are first satisfied that he is of good moral character and in real need of help from the fund.

The scholarship does not cover, as a rule, the entire cost of the pupil's expenses at the institution. In the first instance, the scholar is sent for three months on trial, and the Committee reserve to themselves the power of declaring the scholarship vacant if the result be unsatisfactory to them; if, however, the result be satisfactory, the scholar holds his scholarship for a year from the time that he entered the institution, and then is re-elected from year to year, provided that the Committee, at the expiration of each year, are satisfied, by such evidence as they may require, that the scholar has shown capacity, and applied himself diligently to his studies, and has otherwise conducted himself in a satisfactory manner, and is in need of further instruction. The decision of the Committee as to the re-election of a scholar or otherwise is final.

(b) Assistance by way of contribution is given to institutions or persons undertaking the instruction of the blind, and also to individual blind persons, adults, or children, who are unable to meet the whole expense of such instruction.

2. Pensions - Grants by way of pension are made without restriction as to age.

Persons in receipt of parochial relief are, by one of the regulations drawn up by the Committee for their general guidance, ineligible. Every applicant should, in the first instance, send his name in full, age, and address to the Secretary, and state the average amount of his weekly income, and from what sources it is derived. A letter from the clergyman of the parish in which the applicant lives, or from the minister of the chapel which he attends, should also be sent to the Secretary, certifying from personal knowledge that the applicant is of good character, thoroughly deserving, and in real need of assistance from the Trust.

The pensions, which are of the amounts 10, 15, and 20 a year, are terminable by the committee on six months' notice, and are withdrawn without notice if the pensioner prove undeserving or no longer in need.

As only a small portion of the income of the Trust (at most not more than one-third) can be applied in granting pensions, and as the applicants number over 3,500, and vacancies occur but seldom in the list of pensioners, very many deserving persons must, perforce, be disappointed.

3. Grants by way of free gift are made in the following and other cases:-

(a) To institutions for the purchase of furniture and apparatus required for the instruction of additional pupils beyond those already there, or otherwise in special cases.

(b) For the manufacture of books in blind types, and grants of such books.

(c) To assist local efforts for the establishment or fitting up of schools, at which technical training may be given to the blind in trades or handicrafts.

(d) To enable persons who have received instruction in a trade, handicraft, or profession to begin the practice thereof by providing them with tools, materials, etc., and also

(e) To those persons who require capital to continue their trade, handicraft, or profession, and are unable to procure it.

Grants under headings (d) and (e) are not made with the intention that they will be repeated, but with the hope of permanently establishing the recipients in some trade, handicraft, or profession.

Comparison of the work of the blind with that of seeing persons

104. The general character of the industrial work of the blind is good, but hardly equal to that of the best seeing workmen, as they cannot generally compete with the seeing in quality and finish. Some can earn a fair living, but in most cases they require sighted assistance, and this is found to be necessary on commercial principles; for instance, in some of the best workshops it is found to be more economical to employ sighted labour in finishing the brushes rather than leave it to be done entirely by the blind, as it is in some cases in Germany as well as in England.

105. We found in many workshops for the blind an unwillingness to use the "forms" for baskets which have been successfully adopted in some of the workshops of the United Kingdom and Canada, and which enable the blind to work with greater accuracy than without.

106. Many blind workmen contend that institutions are too much for the benefit of the sighted. We endeavoured to test this statement by ascertaining what were the annual amounts received by the blind and sighted employes respectively. In 33 of these institutions the payments to the blind amounted to 28,370 and to the sighted 19,736, but in the latter, establishment and educational charges are in many cases included. One blind witness considers that all teachers in blind shops, collectors of accounts and managers, should be blind, and adds that a blind man is the best teacher of basket work to the blind, because a sighted man teaches from his own standpoint, whereas a blind man teaches him to work by feeling.


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107. We think that in workshops for the blind sighted supervision is necessary.

Suggestions for Improvement of the Condition of the Industrial Blind

108. We have received some memorials from blind working men, a summary of which and of those received from School Boards, etc., will be found in the Appendix.

109. There are a good number of institutions (33) which provide workshops for the adult blind, but as we have shown in para. 71, the blind require assistance to learn a trade, and an increased number of workshops in which they can work for themselves, a good central depot in each populous district, with a shop for the sale of their goods in a leading thoroughfare, a list of customers, a register of skilled workmen, and good materials obtainable at cost price.

110. We have inspected the books and labour sheets in the workshops connected with various institutions. In most cases the books are admirably kept, showing what each individual earns in the Institution and the charitable addition to his wages, which amounts, in nearly all cases, to a bonus varying in extent from 8.5 to (in a few cases) 100 per cent. Twenty-six Institutions supplement the wages of the workmen in their workshops by means of a bonus averaging about 25 per cent. At Oldham there is a workshop started in a small way by a benevolent society, unconnected with any institution, and conducted on strict business principles; no supplement whatever is given, while good wages are earned. This class of workshop seems well adapted to the wants of the blind in the manufacturing districts, where a ready sale for the special baskets and their repair give constant employment to the blind. At Newcastle there is a workshop of a co-operative character which is fairly self-supporting.

111. Blind workmen are at a disadvantage in various ways in competing with the seeing in the labour market.

112. The existing workshops of the blind have no system of inter-communication, and often instead of helping each other are competing in the same market.

113. At Leicester it is thought that the great want for the blind is some institution which could be managed by the sighted friends of the blind, to bring all the blind in more intimate relations with each other, to assist them to find employment and to dispose of their products.

114. This would include -

(a) A department for obtaining all information respecting manufacture of goods by the blind, and travelling commission agent attached thereto; and

(b) The starting a newspaper, the recognised organ of institutions for the blind.

115. Such an institution was recommended by the Conferences held in 1866, 1867, and 1883; also by the Charity Organisation Society in 1876. One was actually established in the year 1867, but for want of wealthy and influential supporters never got a fair start. Mr. Richardson Gardner, in a memorandum submitted to the Gardner Trustees in 1884, advocated the establishment of a similar institution or "Central Aid".

116. We do not think that such a central institution, however desirable it might at first sight appear, would be workable alongside of a large number of independent institutions; but in all the large centres, we think that where there is not one already, there should be a central shop and workshop for adult skilled workers in correspondence with other institutions, and connected with branches where they exist in the neighbouring towns.

117. A leading defect in the present condition of the blind is that, with a few exceptions, no care or supervision is exercised by institutions over the past pupils who have been trained in the institutions, and consequently many fail to earn their living or maintain themselves by honest labour after they leave school.

Saxon (Fürsorge) System

118. The Saxon system endeavours, and, so far as we have seen, successfully, to meet this want.


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119. The following memorandum from Hofrath Büttner, Director of the Institution at Dresden, furnishes an explanation of the system.

Long experience has taught us that the care and supervision of the blind, after their discharge from the Institution, are quite as important as their education and training in the Institution. It would, in our opinion, be unjust to remove them from their sad surroundings, educate and accustom them to higher wants and then allow them to sink backward into their former miserable way of life.

The Institution at Dresden, at first only a school, afterwards became an establishment for the industrial training of the blind. After their discharge they seldom, however, carried on the trade learned, but became beggars, whether with or without some musical instrument.

This state of things convinced us that the blind were incapable of becoming independent labourers in the world, and steps were taken to establish an asylum in which they might live free from care and the chicaneries of the world. This asylum was not a success, for the expenses were so great that only a few of the blind discharged from the Institution could be provided for; the greater number fell back again into beggary. Moreover, most of the blind refused to enter the asylum; they wished to return to their parents, and the parents also wanted to have their children back again. There was great discontent in the asylum. The men thought it beneath their dignity to rise, take their meals, and work by the clock. They only thought of the restriction to their liberty, and, having grown accustomed to the acts of benevolence done them, they demanded them as a right.

The women, living without care and distraction, became shrewish, and embittered their own lives for mere trifles.

From this ingratitude and discontent it became evident that man, if he suffers from blindness only, will not surrender his liberty, and will not be separated from his relations, and that his happiness cannot be attained without the cares of life, and without work.

After a trial of some 20 years, the asylum was closed, and the old begging system was resumed.

After much deliberation it was decided to remain in connection with the discharged blind, to visit them in their places of abode, to learn their wants, to study the difficulties which they experienced in supporting themselves independently, and, as far as possible, to remove their grievances. Director Georgi began this work in 1843. Director Reinhard continued it from 1867 to 1879, and the present director has followed the same path. With the knowledge of these difficulties the Fürsorge (care) for the discharged blind steadily advanced, and has won the confidence of the Saxon people.

The system of training was proved, in many instances, to be defective. Very often the blind people could do work in the Institution under the supervision of teachers which they could not perform in their own homes alone and independently.

The number of handicrafts taught was, therefore, reduced. The only ones at present taught are:

Basket-making since 1821
Rope-making since 1832
Brush-making since 1880
Piano-tuning since 1882
(The last-mentioned had already been tried in the years 1854 and 1873.)

Different kinds of female work, and plaiting, ever since the establishment of the Institution.

It was further proved that handicrafts were taught in the Institution which, indeed, the blind could carry on after their discharge, but for which there was no demand; they were therefore, given up.

Further, it became certain that the blind were trained too much for the Institution, and not enough for life in the world. The conscientious teacher well knew what was required to make an upright and virtuous man; but he did not know what were the special qualities required by the blind in every-day life. The blind boy entered the Institution as a child; and at 20 he was discharged simple and innocent as a school girl, and now he had to combat the difficulties of life, and carry on a trade independently. It was, therefore, determined to change the training, and now permanent communication is kept up with the relations of the pupils. Quarterly reports are sent to them, with a letter written by the pupil. The relations return the report, also accompanied by a letter. The pupils go home every year for a month's holiday. Everyday life is made familiar to them by the reading aloud of newspapers. They have the advantage of society, both male and female, they learn the laws and usages of ordinary life, commercial letter-writing, the making out of accounts, book-keeping, to reckon the value of their own manufactured wares, the value of money, the elements of political economy, and ordinary housework; they are also taught to walk about the streets alone. All instruction bears as much as possible on everyday life, and the station in life in which the blind will find themselves after their discharge is taken, as much as possible, into consideration.

It was also found that the blind children were taught many things in school which were useless to them in later life, and that exercises in manual dexterity were begun too late.

School teaching and manual training are now carried on simultaneously. Objects from natural history, geography, and geometry are modelled and designed in clay and wax. One of the difficulties which the blind experienced on quitting the Institution was that they often could get no suitable workshops, because no one would trust them for the rent, or because they themselves did not know what kind of a workshop would be suitable for them. In consequence it was decided that the director should go to their places of abode and select suitable homes and workshops for them.

Experience also showed that the discharged blind person, especially at first, could find no sale for his goods. It was, therefore, arranged that the wares which he could not sell should be taken by the Institution for sale.

Very often the blind person had to buy raw material from a rival tradesman who was not blind, and, as may be easily imagined, this often led to his being cheated. The system was, therefore, introduced of allowing the discharged blind to buy their raw material from the Institution.

Further, it was remarked that the discharged blind were often taken advantage of by their neighbours, and that very often no one was there to give them good advice, and that they were thus left to their own resources.

It was therefore decided, that on the discharge of the blind person, the director should select a trustworthy person, residing in his future place of abode, to give him advice and practical help, to protect him from imposition, and to keep up communication with the director. If this guardian is unable to advise or help, he then writes to the director, who, if necessary, comes to the place, and this is all the easier, as he travels free on all railways in Saxony.

The result of these visits, as well as all communications from the guardian, the letters from the blind person, and every document relating to him, are entered in a register kept at the Institution.

These guardians are respectable, benevolent, practical men, capable of procuring custom for their wards.


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But there was no doubt, that, in spite of these arrangements, the discharged blind were unable to support themselves without the assistance of capital, whether in money or outfit. The blind man can do as good work as the man who can see; but, as a rule, he does not work so quickly, and if the man who is not blind has to use every exertion to support himself and his family, the blind man to do the same requires some special help, without which he will either not be able to compete, or will have to lead a life of great privation.

The first difficulty when a blind pupil is starting in life is to provide himself with the necessary tools and material. These the Institution supplies to him, and continues through life to afford him moral and material help; and by this means the greater part of the blind are enabled to save money for sickness and old age.

Those who cannot return to their relations, cannot at once meet all their expenses, and the weak and old need special help. A part of the money for their board and lodging is paid for those who have to be settled in other places, on account of the death or untrustworthiness of their relatives.

There is an asylum for the old and feeble at Königswartha, where a permanent division of labour is rendered possible by the constant presence of three workmen, who, although blind, are strong and healthy. Also, in other places, weak and able-bodied workmen co-operate together and make use of their powers under a proper division of labour.

One may say that these blind people, altogether, on an average, need a yearly assistance of 100 marks, some more, some less. In the year 1886, 40,460 marks, 41 pfennings, were given for assistance to the discharged. This assistance is by no means always given in actual money, but always in such a way that the blind are encouraged by it to work. Mere money assistance is often actual poison to the blind. They therefore receive the assistance in materials for work, clothing, etc.

The fund for the discharged blind provides the money for this.

This fund was started in 1844, under the Director Georgi, with 150 marks; from 1867 to 1879 it was increased under Director Reinhard from 113,670 marks to 768,520 marks; and at the end of 1886 it amounted to 1,014,199 marks.

This sum, which is a large one for Saxony, was collected by contributions from municipal, district, and parochial communities by donations of all kinds, and by the wages of the pupils of the Institution. The whole of the money which the blind earn during their apprenticeship in the workshops is divided into five parts, of which the blind workmen themselves receive one. Four parts go to the fund.

The number of donations has for a long time been very considerable, for there are in the country many wealthy people who have learned from their own experience the value of work for every man. These men it is who give liberal donations of money to that fund, because they do not wish their money to be spent in alms, but to be used to enable the afflicted to gain a livelihood.

The fund for the discharged blind is administered by the Director of the Institution. The number of those assisted amounts at present to about 400, who live respectably in all parts of Saxony, are almost self-supporting, and feel themselves free men. For just as a son does not feel galled by a gift from his father, so they are not ashamed to receive assistance from their second paternal home, the Institution.

At the end of 1885 the 'Fürsorge' Fund amounted to 971,702 marks.

In 1886 were added:-

Marks 9,520 in legacies.
Marks 3,043 from village communes.
Marks 1,250 from district unions.
Marks 2,930 from town communes.
Marks 846 from Protestant and Catholic churches.
Marks 183 from freemasons' lodges.
Year by year these voluntary donations have increased in proportion as the effectiveness of the Fürsorge system has become known to the population of Saxony.

The State does not directly support the Fürsorge system, but it pays the director's travelling expenses on his visits to the discharged pupils, and as the State guarantees the expenses for the education of the blind it has a right to the proceeds of the pupils' work. This, however, it foregoes, but, as already observed, gives one-fifth to the blind workpeople, and four-fifths to the fund, the managers of which it also pays.

The capital of the fund is invested, the interest only being used for the assistance of the discharged blind

A register is kept for every blind person from the time he enters the Institution, and is continued after his discharge till death, or till the 'Fürsorge' is withdrawn. This register also shows how much raw material the blind person has bought from the Institution, what clothes and tools were given him on his discharge, how much he earned when in the Institution, and to what extent he is supported. In this book also the director makes the remarks he considers necessary after his visits to the discharged blind pupils.

120. During their tour the Commissioners saw no blind beggars in Saxony, and were informed that begging on the part of the blind had practically ceased to exist.

121. Dr. Armitage's evidence supplies a very clear account of the working of the system. He adds that:-

A few years ago some of the smaller States adjoining Saxony made arrangements for their blind to be educated in the Dresden Institution. These children were in all respects educated as the Saxon children. They returned to their home after completing their education, but, unfortunately, there was no system of supervision after leaving the school, and the result was that they almost all failed: while their Saxon companions, living under the same circumstances, almost invariably succeeded. This difference could only result from the want of supervision, and timely help and advice in the case of the children belonging to the small States; these have, however, now undertaken the supervision, and the result is as satisfactory as it is in Saxony.
122. The Saxon system has not yet been fully tried in this country, though its introduction has now for some years been advocated by Dr. Armitage. A plan similar in its main provisions has been adopted in Paris in the Societé de Placement et de Secours, which is an indispensable supplement to the "Institution Nationale." The society has been recognised by the State in France since 1856, and has a capital of nearly 6,000 sterling. Its example has been followed by similar institutions in the provinces.


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123. We think that the adoption of the Saxon system is of the utmost importance to the blind of this country in the four following respects, as soon as the funds can be raised to carry it out:-

1. That a register should be kept of all pupils leaving the Institution.

2. That they should be assisted in carrying on a trade, should they wish to set up for themselves, and in the first instance be provided with tools and materials gratis, and, subsequently, at cost price.

3. That the Institutions should endeavour to provide funds to supplement the workman's earnings, grant loans, or afford him assistance in case of illness.

4. An endeavour should be made to interest some influential local agency with which the Institution could correspond on behalf of the blind.

III.

The Aged Blind

124. The State does nothing for the aged and infirm blind, except through the guardians to offer them the workhouse,* without any special provision for them to alleviate their lot, or to distinguish them from the general mass of the paupers reduced by their own vice or folly, idleness or improvidence, to seek poor law relief. Before discussing in detail the suggestions made to us, we would observe that on general grounds we think that the aged blind should be treated on a different principle from the ordinary pauper; they are deserving of more generous treatment, and, as their poverty does not arise from any fault of their own, we consider that in many instances the ordinary workhouse test should be relaxed, and outdoor relief given to them on a liberal scale, which should not subject them to any legal disqualification.

125. Evidence has been given to us that the blind in all workhouses are not treated with the consideration they deserve. The Rev. C. Andras, chaplain of the Woolwich union, says, "there they drift, for want of some better provision, herded with many who are just outside the criminal class, and who have little or no sympathy with genuine distress or helplessness, though themselves needy. Unions are not built suitably for the blind. ... Very little help is given; they are just treated as the others" (Letter to Chairman of Commission).

He Justly feels the sad position of the respectable blind in a workhouse, the rules of which are framed for a totally different class.

126. In a few cases a more liberal arrangement prevails, and special workhouse rules have been drawn up for their treatment.

127. It has been suggested that there should be an asylum for the maintenance of those who have become blind in middle age or upwards, by accident or otherwise, and who have no friends to support them; and that the cost should be in London a charge upon the Metropolitan Common Fund, as is the asylum for imbeciles.

128. It may be more just to the blind, quite independent of economic grounds, that they should be kept out of the workhouse; and in London such a central asylum or home may be necessary, as it is at present difficult to get middle-aged blind into institutions; but the blind in England are disposed to live in their own homes rather than in an institution, and if a liberal grant to the necessitous blind were given, it might be found unnecessary to found such a central home.

129. We have had no evidence that there is any wish for an institution like the Quinze Vingts, at Paris, where each blind inmate, with his family, keeps house, and forms part of a large community.

130. The guardians in one case brought before us gave 1s. a week per head to outdoor blind more than to sighted people, and although the relatives with whom these blind people lived, did not treat them well, yet the same relatives objected to the blind being transferred to a cottage home, for fear of losing the total subsidy which they were receiving for their maintenance.

131. While the blind men, as long as they can work, can earn something for themselves, the blind women must always be largely dependent on charity, as they

*Number on the 2nd September 1887 of blind persons in the United Kingdom above 21 years of age receiving relief was 3,278 (indoor) and 4,895 (outdoor). (See Parliamentary Return, No. 326 of 1887.)


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seldom can earn sufficient by the chair-caning, knitting, or crochet, which in many cases is their only means of livelihood.

132. To establish for such a cottage home or house where a few women could live together, as in the homes at Bath and Leicester, would seem to be a very desirable object of charity.

133. We found this system adopted at Kiel, in Schleswig-Holstein, and, according to Mr. Hall, the same prevails at Philadelphia.

134. The aged blind in many workhouses at present pass a wretched existence. The Commissioners were struck by this when visiting the workhouse at Cork; 22 aged men and women, totally blind, are retained in this workhouse, little or nothing being done to alleviate their condition.

135. But it must be remembered that those are the older people, for whom probably little can be done; all those able to work and the children, to the number of 80, are maintained at the Guardians' expense in various institutions, viz.: Cork Blind Asylum, 54; St. Raphael's Blind School, 13; St. Joseph's, Dublin, 6; and at Merrion, Dublin, 7. In these Institutions they are being educated or are employed in industrial work, and the elevating and improving effect of such treatment on their characters was plainly perceptible to the Commissioners.

136. In consequence of evidence given by two or three witnesses respecting the condition of the blind in workhouses, and from our own personal visits to a few of the workhouses, we requested the Local Government Board for England and Wales to furnish us with a report on the subject, more especially with reference to the following points:-

(1) Are any special arrangements in force in any of the workhouses for enabling the blind to be treated with greater consideration than ordinary paupers?

(2) What provision is made for instructing the blind to read, or is permission given, or facilities afforded, to visitors from the Indigent Blind Society, or other kindred society, to teach the blind to read and to lend books to them?

(3) What arrangements, if any, are made for blind inmates' learning trades outside the workhouse?

(4) To what extent have your board of guardians availed themselves of the powers conferred upon them of sending blind paupers to institutions specially provided for their reception and treatment?

137. The Local Government Board desired the inspectors of 15 districts to report on the points respecting which information was desired, and the reports of these inspectors will be found in the Appendix. They appear to have been drawn up in most cases from particulars supplied by the masters of the workhouses, though some of the inspectors made careful personal inquiry in addition.

138. As regards the first point, it appears that, with some rare exceptions, the treatment accorded to blind paupers is the same as that shown to infirm inmates of the workhouse. Several of the inspectors question moreover whether it would be right to show the blind any special favour in regard to diet, hours, etc., which are not shown to epileptics and other analogous cases.

139. All the unions are apparently disposed to offer reasonable facilities and encouragement to mission societies, branches of the Home Teaching Society and others to visit and teach the blind in the workhouses. But although many of these agencies show a praiseworthy activity in this work, in the majority of cases no such visits are made, probably because there is no society near enough to the unions in question.

140. When the blind are desirous of learning a trade, it is usual for the guardians to send them to a special institution for the blind, where such instruction will be given them, and to pay the cost of maintenance. At Sunderland, and a few other places, however, a somewhat different plan has been adopted, and there outdoor relief has been granted on the condition that the blind will attend at the institution in that town and learn basket-making, mattress-making, etc. This plan, to which we have already referred, is reported to have worked well, and to have succeeded in instilling a greater amount of self-reliance into the blind than they would have acquired in an institution where they are boarded and lodged.


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141. It appears that, on the whole, most of the guardians avail themselves fairly of the powers vested in them to send suitable cases to institutions for education and training, but a good deal more might undoubtedly be done in this direction. Mr. Kennedy speaks of 12 cases in his district which deserve further consideration at the hands of guardians, and Mr. W. E. Knollys, in his suggestive and careful report, says, "I am acquainted with several instances of blind men comparatively young who appear to have no resource whatever, either within themselves or provided for them, to relieve the tedium of their existence, and I have noticed them with regret purposelessly pacing up and down their yards or lounging without occupation over the day-room fires."

142. This entirely agrees with our own observations in the few workhouses which we visited.

143. We observe a recommendation made by Mr. Kennedy, Inspector of the Yorkshire District, that middle-aged blind paupers who become chargeable to county unions might preferably be sent to a workhouse in a town where a society (or institution) for the blind exists. The suggestion appears to us to be an eminently practical one, and we think that the Local Government Board should do all that they can to encourage it.

144. One or two witnesses representing a general feeling among the poor adult blind, both in England and Scotland, have suggested that "state aid of a regular and reliable nature be granted to all blind persons unable to earn a sufficient livelihood, and (particularly) that it should come to the individual direct, and not go through the official channels of existing Institutions." This plan, however, has never been submitted in a workable shape, so as to secure the State from assisting undeserving persons, and even if it were on general grounds deserving of support, it would be open to the objection that, to a great extent, all inducement to work would be taken away.

145. The condition of the blind of 50 and upwards, who are not able to do much work from illness or infirmity, depends mainly on the charitable institutions which are homes for the aged blind, and on the pensions which are distributed by certain charitable societies and some of the City Companies.

Pensions

146. We have been enabled to collect particulars respecting 35 charities which assist the blind by way of pensions. Several of the larger charities do not give pensions except to those over 50 or 60 years of age. A list of all those charities of which we have heard will be found in the Appendix.

147. The pensions given by the London charities, though generally open to all England, are chiefly distributed in London and the Southern counties, and seem to be but rarely participated in by the blind in the North.

148. These London charities, which constitute much the larger proportion, amount to nearly 30,000 per annum, and are distributed among about 3,550 persons in sums varying from 2 to 20. Careful precautions appear to be taken in some charities in the distribution of these funds, but it does occasionally happen that one applicant will secure several pensions from different trusts.

149. A considerable amount of money is available for pensions, and endowed charities for the blind are continually being founded. Yet the applications for them far exceed the number of annual vacancies in the hands of the various trustees.

150. The Harrison Fund, Bradford, has been of great use in enabling small monthly pensions to be given to 16 blind people of the town too old and infirm to work, and who, but for this help, would be in great want. We were informed when visiting Bradford that twice the amount of the money now at their disposal could be advantageously distributed in this way.

151. The fund established by the late Mrs. S. Markham in connection with the Yorkshire Institution in 1886, for the purpose of aiding former pupils to establish themselves in industry, consists of 800, the interest of which is devoted towards (i) providing apparatus, materials, or tools; (ii) making small grants of money to paupers well reported of; or (iii) affording assistance in case of sickness, etc.


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152. Evidence has been laid before us leading to the conclusion that the pensions are in some cases abused, and are not always administered to the best advantage, the persons who award the pensions sometimes have no personal knowledge of the training, aptitude, and character of the blind persons, and the result is that pensions are often granted when they would have been better withheld, and withheld when they might with advantage have been granted. The pensions are often awarded to those who have the most influential friends, and are given sometimes by several societies to the same individual without any inter-communication between the societies. Such interchange of lists is carried out by some of the leading London charities.

153. From the evidence given there would seem to be no objection to such registration being generally carried out.

154. The City Companies charge nothing for the administration of their charities, every penny received by them for the blind goes to the blind.

155. Pensions, as at present given, do not always contribute to thrift, and are rather a discouragement to industry. Many blind men who are strong, healthy, and vigorous will not work, because they expect to get a pension, or having obtained a pension will not put forth their proper energies.

156. It has been suggested with reason, that if the funds now given as pensions could be used to supplement still further the earnings of skilful workmen, it would be an immense stimulus to work, and the pension would be looked upon as a reward for industry rather than an excuse for idleness. Under the present system no supervision is exercised to test the way in which the pensions are used by the recipients. It is contended that the present limitation of age in some of the charities does not tend to make the pensions conditional on self-help.

157. It is difficult to exaggerate the want of self-reliance of blind people who have been brought up in dependence on existing or expected charity. As an illustration it is stated that there is a general hope among many of the indigent blind that the result of the Royal Commission will be that everyone shall have a pension.

158. However desirable it may be that the aged and infirm should be well cared for, yet it is obvious that it would not be for the general welfare of the blind that they should form an exception to the general law, that every man should, as far as he can, earn his bread by work. The hardworking man, of whatever age, and those struck down by sudden loss of sight, may fairly be considered as fitting objects of relief by Blind Pension Societies; while the old and decrepit have especial claims on those of the City charities which were established for their sole benefit.

159. To meet the objections which have been raised by various witnesses, we think - (1) That co-operation should be established amongst all the various pension societies, whereby a united register should be kept of all recipients, and thus the possibility be avoided of undeserving cases being relieved, and of blind persons becoming recipients of more than one annuity, except under special circumstances.

160. (2) That, by legislation or otherwise, the rules and regulations of the pension system should be revised, so that the limits of age might be altered in many cases, and greater facilities given for distribution of funds for the use of the industrious adult blind.

161. (3) The pensions should not be given quarterly in lump sums, as they are liable to be wasted and misused, either by the blind or by those who accompany them to the distributor of the money, but they should be paid weekly or monthly through the agency of either a local magistrate, medical practitioner, or of the parochial clergy, or minister, who might from time to time report on the conduct and deserts of the pensioners in their parish. This distribution might well be facilitated by the adoption of the Saxon system.

Blind in their private Homes

162. Besides those in institutions and those who are employed in workshops, there is a large class who live at home, or who are too sick and weakly to be admitted into blind institutions.


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Societies in aid of the Blind

163. The Home Teaching Society for the Blind declares its objects to be to visit every blind person not in an institution. It employs 18 blind teachers, divides London into districts, visits 2,210 blind in London (of whom 1,493 are able to read Moon type); it has formed a great number of branches, and thus indirectly creates a direct interest in the blind, which leads to other institutions for their welfare.

164. But the ground is not as yet all covered; though other agencies are employed in visiting the adults in their own homes, reading to them, and teaching them to read and write; there are many localities where no branch of the Home Teaching Society exists.

165. The Indigent Blind Visiting Society visits at their homes about 1,000 of the metropolitan blind, assists them when required, starts them in trade, and employs many in knitting and other work. It has also 15 day classes in various parts of London, in which the blind learn to read and write, and the women to knit, etc. In this society all the visitors and the secretary are blind. All types are taught, especially Braille.

166. The evidence of one witness from Worcestershire shows that there are a great number of blind in his district who are never visited, and a great number of blind children who do not at present go to any school.

167. There are other associations and agencies, a list of which will be found in the Appendix.

. 168. We have collected information respecting 55 associations and missions to the blind in the United Kingdom, whose functions are mainly to visit the blind, teach them to read and write, assist them to obtain work, and afford them general relief and help.

169. These societies number 11,640 blind who either belong to the associations or are visited by their agents, and the number of uneducated blind of school age, which they have come across in the course of their researches is reported by them to be 261, and above school age, 2,825.

Types

170. We give specimens of the principal types for the blind on separate pages in the Appendix.

171. Some societies have for their principal aim the dissemination of literature for the blind in various types, the leading types being, in alphabetical order, Alston or Roman, Braille, Lucas, and Moon.

172. The types used by the blind are various, and no general system is in use either in this country, the Continent, or America. In the latter the New York Point and Howe's are in use.

173. It is contended that the Braille type is capable of being used both by old and young. It is gradually gaining ground, and appears likely to supersede the others for the young and intelligent of all ages, were it not that some institutions which have libraries in other types do not like making a change, and teach their own special type, whether Moon or Alston or Lucas generally, in addition to Braille.

174. The books in the latter type have been extensively printed and distributed by the British and Foreign Blind Association.

175. It would no doubt be convenient in theory to have one universal type for the blind, but it does not seem likely to be generally adopted, as there seems a considerable feeling in favour of Moon's type, in which a comparatively large literature exists.

176. The St. John's Wood School, which was founded for the purpose of teaching the blind to read by means of the Lucas type (which is a form of shorthand), and for the purpose of embossing books in that system, has now adopted both Braille and Moon as well.

177. From the information received by the Commissioners on their visit to this Institution, it was evident that this Society continues to print and to teach the Lucas


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type, on account of restrictions by which they considered themselves to be legally bound.

178. There is very little demand for the books printed in this type, and but few blind people can read them. In fact, like the phonetic system of Frere, it is gradually dying out.

179. It appears to the Commissioners that the present managers of the Institution would gladly be relieved from this restriction as to type.

180. If the Government were to give assistance to the blind by supplying them with books "gratis" or at reduced prices, it would no doubt tend to uniformity of type in time, though one witness remarks "that to regard one type as having any inherent value over others is ridiculous, and that Moon, Braille, and Alston should be subsidised equally." We do not, however (as we observe later on), recommend that any such subsidy should be given by the Government.

181. The board school teachers mostly adopt the Braille type for the use of children, though they also sanction, in some instances, Moon's type.

182. For those blind from birth or from early childhood, Braille seems to be, without doubt, the most suitable, as it can be read more quickly and can be printed in a much smaller bulk than any other. It also is capable of being written quickly in a frame, and is the only one well adapted to musical notation.

183. It is claimed for the Moon type that it is specially suited to the aged.

184. The cost of a copy of the Bible in any raised type is about 5, which would be almost a prohibitory price if there were not societies to assist the blind in obtaining such works.

185. It seems desirable that the blind should also be taught to read the Roman type as well as the other types (as it can be taught to the blind easily by any seeing person), before they go to school, and to write it in the ordinary way, so as to put them more readily in communication with the seeing world; we have seen several simple frames which enable the blind to write letters and send them by post directed in ordinary writing; some of these have the additional advantage of being written in relief letters, enabling the blind person to read his own writing.

186. It is said that the Roman type is taught in those schools where the principal directors are seeing, and that they adopt it in accordance with their prejudices as seeing persons; while, when blind directors or teachers have the control of the education the Roman is not taught except as a writing system.

187. Many experienced witnesses, however, are in favour of the retention of this type, viz., the Rev. B. G. Johns, Mr. Buckle, Mr. W. J. Day, Mr. Harris, and the Rev. R. McNeile.

188. In America the Boston modification of the Roman letter was the most prevalent, on the ground that it was better for the blind not to be cut off from the rest of the world, but Mr. Hall informed us that opinion was changing, and the institutions which used to order books to be printed in the line type now order them half, and some all, in New York point type.

189. It seems better for the young when at school to be first instructed in Braille; afterwards they can easily learn to read Moon or Roman type, and thus profit by the existing literature printed in those types. In fact, it is useful to the blind to know all the leading types.

190. Besides these appliances there are several type-writers that are found to be of great service to the blind to enable them to write rapidly.

Course of Instruction to the Blind

191. We are of opinion, from the evidence we have received, and from personal inspection of the schools, that a special code for the blind is unnecessary. There appears to be no difficulty in teaching the blind reading, writing, and arithmetic. Nay more, they show great proficiency in mental arithmetic, and generally a blind child can take his place and pass his standard examinations with his seeing companions. It will be necessary in order to facilitate the teaching of the blind in our elementary


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schools that the ordinary text books now used there should be easily procurable in embossed type. There is no reason why, as soon as they have mastered the special type, they should not be taught in elementary schools up to a certain age. Every school for the blind should be expected to teach all the elementary subjects, and, in addition, modelling and Kindergarten work should be added wherever practicable.

192. In the schools in Germany we found that more importance was attached to the training of the touch of the blind than is generally the case in England with the exception of Norwood; in fact, they proceed upon the principle that the fingers must replace the eyes, and an accurate sense of touch is cultivated by modelling, Kindergarten work, and a variety of gymnastics and games, which are calculated to develop it and their general physique.

Teachers in Schools

193. Under the present Code of Regulations of the Education Department it is not necessary for the purpose of earning grants, that the teachers of the classes for the blind established by school boards throughout the country should be certificated, so long as the principal teacher of the school to which these classes are attached is certificated. Moreover, it would be difficult for the teachers of these classes, many of whom are themselves blind, to pass the examinations for the seeing, without some relaxations of the provisions of the Code. There is, therefore, no guarantee that teachers of the school board classes for the blind, whether themselves blind or seeing, are adequately and properly trained.

194. We are of opinion that the conduct of the education of the blind should in all cases be under certificated teachers, and that they should be placed under the same regulations as the seeing teachers in elementary schools before being allowed to teach, and in all cases should have such sighted assistance as may be necessary to ensure the efficiency of their teaching.

195. The existing teachers of the blind in institutions are, in most cases, not so good as the best of the teachers in the elementary schools, and they are certainly not so well paid.

Should they be "Blind"?

196. There is among the blind a great wish to become teachers of the blind, both because it opens out to them a remunerative occupation, and because the blind teachers are popular with the blind.

197. They are said to be more patient with their pupils, and having themselves experienced the difficulties of acquiring knowledge, are more in sympathy with them; their sense of touch is also more delicate, and they encourage the children to make more use of it; and the very fact that their teachers are blind and are doing such good work as their pupils know that they are doing, and are able to move about freely, stimulates the ambition of the children, and gives them confidence.

198. It has been urged by some witnesses that a teacher should have keen sight as well as keen intelligence, and if he has lost one of those faculties, he can be hardly so well qualified as a man who has all.

199. Our experience is that some few blind teachers, who are thoroughly trained, can teach exceedingly well, and better than most sighted persons, and we think it advisable to make use of blind teachers with sighted assistance, but where there is only one teacher he should be sighted, because there are many defects of manner and habit in blind children which a sighted person alone can correct.

200. It has also been proved that the ordinary certificated teachers can, without much trouble, teach the blind without any special training, if they will take the trouble to learn the system of reading and writing.

201. In America men so distinguished as ex-President Cleveland and Mr. Blaine began life as teachers of the blind; and the teachers of the blind are there taken generally from a higher and better informed class than in England, and they are better paid.

202. It is hoped that the Norwood College will be of use in training teachers for the blind. When we visited it in 1887 all the resident sighted teachers in the school


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department were American, and trained in the best normal schools of Massachusetts, and on asking the reason we were informed that they were better trained than any English teachers that they could then obtain for the same salary. A number of blind teachers who have been trained in the College are now successfully employed in the College and elsewhere, as at Leeds and Sheffield, and by the school boards of London, Bradford, and Cardiff.

203. In the Institution Nationale at Paris all the classes are under blind professors, most of whom have been trained at the institution. The candidates for such professorships have to pass two long and minute examinations after an interval of two years before representatives of the university or existing professors; but the general supervision, exclusive of the teaching staff, is under sighted superintendence. viz., director, treasurer, house steward, censeur or controller, and four surveillants or overseers.

Management of Institutions

204. The blind institutions which we have visited are generally well managed by Committees; and on the occasion of our inspections we have found members of the committee as well as the officers of the institutions always ready and willing to give us any information in their power and to listen to any suggestions that we made. Some dissatisfaction has been expressed at the imperfect training of the blind in trades or technical work during their stay at institutions, and a belief is found to exist among a few workmen that what they are taught is more for the pecuniary benefit of the institution than for themselves. A basket maker is sometimes not taught to make the kind of basket for which there is a local demand outside the institution.

205. Objection is also taken that in some cases the blind become more helpless after being at an institution, because they are not encouraged to help themselves, do household work, or even to feed themselves. In the best managed institutions this is not the case.

206. Several of the larger institutions are under special Acts of Parliament, such as Liverpool, Southwark, etc. The regulations of the Royal Blind Asylum, Edinburgh, appear well suited for the government of an institution which includes a school, asylum, and a workshop for old pupils. The Henshaw's Blind Asylum at Manchester, which appears to be well managed, is governed under regulations amended under an order of the High Court of Chancery.

207. One witness wishes to have a blind representative of the blind on the governing body of a blind institution, not in order to control the funds, but to make known the views of the blind. He believes that the opinions of the blind would thus be brought more quickly before committees, and if there was discontent at their treatment it would reach the ears of the committees far more quickly than at present. We have found that blind persons are not infrequently on the governing bodies of Institutions, and we may cite the names of Miss Gilbert, the late Viscount Cranborne, and others whose labours for the blind are so well known.

208. While we do not think it advisable to suggest any change in the constitution of the voluntary bodies which have done good work in the education and training of the blind, we have made many comments on individual institutions in the report of our visits. We recommend that, subject to inspection, all the control of the internal domestic affairs of such institutions should be left as heretofore with the existing governing bodies.

Cost of maintenance in Institutions

209. The cost of maintenance and education appears to vary considerably in the different institutions, as the accounts are not always kept on a uniform plan, and the different branches of expenditure overlap each other to such an extent as to make it impossible to separate them by a sharp line. Hence the deductions to be made from them are not reliable for the purpose of comparison. A witness, speaking of St. George's, Southwark, says, that in 1881 in that institution the cost, excluding the fixed capital, was in round numbers about 50 for boarding, lodging, clothing, teaching, and training.


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210. In ten of the schools which have made returns to us, the average cost of education is estimated at 6 4s., and of board and lodging, 16 18s. These institutions, however, do not include the somewhat exceptional cases of the Royal Normal College, St. George's, Southwark, and Worcester College, where the cost per head of education and maintenance is estimated at 59 15s. 0d., 50, and 90 respectively.

Election of Candidates

211. Candidates for admission to most institutions are elected by the votes of the subscribers. In many cases the number of the applicants, especially now among the blind under 12 years of age, far exceeds the number admissible.

Gymnasia and Physical Exercises

212. As the blind have lower vitality than the sighted, they therefore require everything to assist their physical development, bathing, influence of sunlight and air, and gymnastic exercises.

213. One witness stated that the blind leave institutions in a weakly state, whether from want of exercise or insufficient food. We have observed the blind suffering from want of physical exercise, but we have not had any complaints of insufficient food, nor have we seen anything to lead us to such a conclusion.

214. The success of the blind in after life depends largely on their physical training, to keep up their energy. We think that healthy out of door sports for the blind should be encouraged as much as possible.

215. A good gymnasium is a necessary adjunct to an institution. At Norwood there are two: one for boys and one for girls; skating, swimming, rowing, cycling, and other games are freely practised. The Henshaw's Asylum and St. George's, Southwark, are well fitted up with gymnastic appliances, and boys and girls both mount the ladders and swings as if they had sight. The military or musical drill is also very useful in keeping up discipline, while it exercises the body. At Kiel sixteen of the men and women, employed in the workshops, danced the lancers and waltzed afterwards with ease.

216. We saw the pupils at Worcester College playing at football with a wicker basket ball enclosing a bell, and walking on stilts with perfect fearlessness.

State Inspection

217. Under any system of State aid there must necessarily be State inspection; should the inspectors be specially trained in the education and industrial instruction of the blind?

218. The school inspectors for the blind should be selected, if possible, from inspectors of elementary schools who should have made themselves acquainted with the methods, types, and appliances used in the education of the blind.

219. It has been impressed upon us by some blind witnesses that there should be blind inspectors, or at least one blind inspector, in addition to sighted inspectors, because a seeing man would never be severe enough in demanding the full powers of the blind; no man who has not himself gone through the course of education of a blind man knows how much he can do, and how much he might fairly expect. It has also been stated that there should be more than one inspector: one to be specially skilled in the training of the blind, and one in industrial work. At present there is no Government inspection where there is not a certificated teacher; though a certificated teacher is desirable, yet there should be inspection of all existing schools, whether there be a certificated teacher or not. The inspectors should also examine and inspect the industrial department of institutions or workshops, should they be established, which are not now examined. This would also indirectly have a beneficial influence upon institutions and lead to uniformity of teaching throughout blind schools, encourage inter-communication between institutions, and lead up to the attainment of a more uniform standard of progress.


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Proposals for State Aid

220. We have previously stated that the Boards of Guardians have the power to send, under certain conditions, blind children to an institution, and to pay towards their maintenance and education in all cases where the parents are unable to pay without pauperising the parent by such a payment from the rates.

221. They have also the power of providing for the maintenance and instruction of blind adults in an institution. But with the exception of these and of the school board classes for the blind, the education of the blind has hitherto been largely dependent on private charity, and the necessity for direct State aid, as practised in some British colonies, in the leading European countries, and in the United States, has not been generally recognised in this country.

222. Bequests or endowments for the blind have been frequently made of late years, yet, in the distribution of general endowments for education by the Charity Commissioners, the blind have not hitherto received any benefit.

223. It is agreed by all witnesses that the benefits of the Education Acts should be extended to the blind, to the fullest extent, and they should be treated on the same grounds as ordinary children (they are not specifically excluded from the Education Act, and in Scotland are included specially by the Act of 1872, in its compulsory provisions), and that a larger grant than is given to the seeing in proportion to the additional expense in educating them is necessary.

224. The present education grant for blind children under the London School Board varies from 18s. 5½d. per head to 18s. 11½d., and up to 21s. in Scotland, calculated on the average attendance.

225. The aggregate amount of the grant must depend upon the necessity or otherwise of the training of blind children in separate institutions. There will always be some who will require such assistance; the State would then have to provide for the maintenance as well as education. The present grant from guardians is generally insufficient, and varies from 5 to 20, and higher in some exceptional cases.

226. The Manchester School Board have passed a resolution, that the Education Department might with propriety make grants to institutions for the education of the blind, and that such grants might be made either towards maintenance, as in the case of certified industrial schools, or upon examination, as in the public elementary schools.

227. Under the London School Board the annual net cost of educating a blind child is 9 10s. 5d., this amount being arrived at by taking the net cost per head in the schools in which blind children were instructed at Lady Day, 1888, viz., 1 13s. 11d., and adding to it the cost per head of the special instruction of the blind, viz., 7 16s. 6d. In the cases of the three school board classes at Cardiff, Bradford, and Sunderland, the average net cost of education of each blind child is 7 3s. 1d. per annum.

228. In Scotland, it has been suggested that a grant of 10 for each child, 5 from the State and 5 from the local authority, would be sufficient, leaving voluntary efforts to provide the buildings and the other half of the cost.

229. In Glasgow, though the school board admitted that the cost of educating a blind child was about 35s. higher than that of educating a seeing child, which is about 2 2s. 6d. per annum, they stated they did not wish to claim any larger grant from the State on that account.

230. It has also been suggested that the grant for a blind child should be double that for an ordinary child.

231. Mr. H. E. Oakeley and the Rev. T. W. Sharpe, two of H.M. Inspectors of Schools, recommend that school boards should have power to establish central schools where they are required, and that for cases sent to institutions for the blind, an additional grant should be paid annually, which would cover the difference between the contribution which is at present allowed to be paid by guardians and the total cost of annual maintenance at some institution, which difference, he believes, to be about 10 annually.


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232. Mr. Fitch, another of H.M. Inspectors, recommends that:-

On a satisfactory report from an inspector, the school board should be allowed to claim at each of the centres of special instruction an additional grant for every blind child who has attended the class during half the year, and who has also passed the standard examination. Such additional grant should not exceed one-half of the total extra cost of the blind child's instruction.
233. Dr. Campbell thinks it is the policy of the State to give the blind the best practical education that they are capable of receiving; if the State has to support a blind person in a workhouse for 40 or 50 years, it is quite evident that it is cheaper for the State, to say nothing of the humanity at all, to educate rather than pauperize. In support of this it may be mentioned that the Board of State Commissioners of Public Charities in the United States, say in their Report:-
As observation shows that educated blind persons seldom become a public charge, it would seem important, not only in its social bearings, but as a question of political economy, to bring as many of the blind as practicable under proper educational training.
234. The Gardner Trustees by their scholarships enable those leaving the board schools to obtain technical instruction at various institutions, and higher education at Worcester; but there are always more candidates than can be elected, and it is satisfactory to find that the children from the public elementary schools generally succeed best in the open competition for such scholarships.

235. The Gardner trustees have it under consideration to assist in founding a college at Worcester, if it should be re-constituted as a public trust.

236. It has been suggested* that the State, by the Education Department, might give grants of books to institutions and asylums, which would relieve them from the heavy cost of printed books, and that the types to be selected should be a Braille type for the young, and Moon type for the aged.

237. In America, the printing for the blind is largely subsidized. Mr. W. Wait, Superintendent of New York Institution for the Blind, says, "The Act of 45th Congress established a permanent fund, the annual interest on which, amounting to 10,000 dollars, is to be distributed in the form of books and apparatus adapted to the use of the blind among the institutions in the United States."

238. In this country the printing for the blind is in private hands, and, we think, it must be left, as it is now, to private enterprise.

239. We do not think that it would be wise for the Education Department to make grants of books, but in giving the annual grant the expenses of providing books should be borne in mind.

RECOMMENDATIONS

State aid

240. The recommendations which we make are founded on the general idea, which has been strongly impressed upon us by various witnesses, and by the observations made during the visits of the Commission at home and abroad, that the blind should, as far as possible, be treated like seeing people, and that the object of their education and physical training should be, as far as practicable, to make up for their physical defects, and to train them to earn their livelihood. This principle is not only right, but it is politically and economically sound. It is better for the local authority or the State to expend its funds on the elementary and technical education of the blind for a few years rather than to have to support them through life in idleness, or to allow them to obtain their livelihood from public or private charity.

241. It has been frequently impressed on us that while the parents might be able to pay for the ordinary cost of education of a seeing child in an elementary school, they might not be able to defray the extra cost of maintenance in an institution for the blind. We therefore think they should be treated liberally in this respect, and that the parents should not only receive the assistance for their children without being compelled to apply to the guardians, but that such assistance should be given for the whole period, say, from 5 to 16 years of age. We are aware that the guardians are empowered to send such cases to an institution, even though the parent may not be a pauper in receipt of relief, but we have nevertheless had abundant testimony of the very natural disinclination on the part of poor parents to apply to the guardians in

*Reports of Visits, (Macdonald of Glasgow).


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such a matter for aid, and also of the reluctance of some boards of guardians to afford such aid. There appears to be a general consensus of opinion in favour of vesting the power of making the grant in the hands of the school authority rather than leaving it in the hands of the poor law administration, with whom it would assume the form of a charitable concession rather than an educational duty.

242. It has been advocated by some that the education of the blind should be free, and we think that if free education should be given by the State, the blind ought to have the first claim; but we do not consider that the parents of the blind should be absolved from the responsibility of their education and maintenance, or from paying for them to the extent of their ability.

243. We recommend therefore -

(1) That the provisions of the Education Acts be extended to the blind, and that the compulsory attendance at a school or institution be enforced from 5 to 16 in the following way:-

(2) That the education of the blind in the elementary school should commence at five in the infant department, and after passing through the ordinary standards, the technical or industrial training should begin at from 12 to 14 in an institution or technical school, and that parents should not have the power of withdrawing the children before the age of 16. Such of the blind pupils as show exceptional promise should be encouraged by scholarships to qualify for education at a high class college. Independently of the position of the parent, a capitation grant, equal to at least half the cost of instruction, should be given to all in the same way as in ordinary elementary schools. If intended to be trained in music, instruction should be given as soon as possible.

(3) Where the number is too small to form a class, or where the child is unable to attend an elementary school, the school board or school attendance authority should have the power and be required (a) to send a child to an institution, and to contribute to his education and maintenance such grant as would be equivalent to the contribution now allowed to be paid by guardians; (b) if there should be no institution available or willing to receive such child, the school authority should have the power to board out the child, or, either by itself or in combination with other school authorities, to establish an institution for the purpose, and to educate the child under certificated teachers and proper inspection.

(4) That the school attendance should be compulsorily enforced for at least eight years, without any existing limit of distance from school; and power given to the local authority to pay the rail or tram fare of children when necessary.

(5) That the grant on behalf of children, whether in a day school or in a boarding school, up to the age of 16, should be given under the certificate of a properly qualified inspector, who should certify the character of the teaching in the school, and the grant should depend, not only on the merits of each individual scholar, but on the aggregate proficiency of the blind pupils.

244. Legislation would be necessary to extend the compulsory period under the Education Acts for the blind, and to vest the power in the school authority rather than in the guardians. Whatever may be the authority, it should provide a certain sum towards the maintenance of the blind in an institution either at an early age or after a course of training in some elementary school.

Industrial Training

245. In any legislation for the encouragement of technical or industrial training, we think that the claims of the blind should be duly considered in the direction we have suggested.

246. There seems a want in London of a metropolitan industrial school for the blind, which one of the existing institutions might supply, as the expense of sending London children to provincial institutions is very great. The parents do not like their children going far from home, and the guardians are not empowered to visit them in the institutions at a distance from London, except at their own expense. Such an


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institution should consist of (1) a preparatory school for the infant classes, where Kindergarten work should be carried on; (2) an elementary education school where modelling and the making of maps, and some knowledge of music and technical training should be imparted, in addition to the ordinary curriculum in elementary schools. (Should the education of the blind be carried on under the same law as at present is applied to elementary schools, the two first-named departments would be unnecessary); (3) after they leave an elementary school technical instruction should be given in the trades suitable to the blind, together with a continuance of their educational studies, and those who may show such special aptitude for music or tuning as would lead to their adopting it as a profession, should be sent elsewhere for superior training; games and gymnastic exercise should be strongly encouraged, and form part of the ordinary school work. Such a school might become a model school, and from it teachers specially trained in industrial work might be distributed over the United Kingdom.

247. We recommend -

(1) That the technical instruction in industrial handicrafts, as well as the educational training of the blind should be placed under the Education Department; an efficient inspection of industrial work, by a Government inspector, would tend to raise the standard of work, and to produce good instead of indifferent workmen, as is too often the case at present.

(2) That from 16 to 21 the school authority should have the power and duty to give to all the necessitous blind a liberal grant to maintain themselves while they are learning a trade.

(3) That a central shop and workshop for adult skilled workers should be established in every large centre where the same has not yet been started. But the State should not directly subsidise their work, and it should be left to private benevolence to start such central workshops and boarding-houses, where the blind could be assisted to obtain work or be provided with materials at cost price, if they wish to live at their own homes, and where they would obtain a ready sale of their work.

(4) That the adult blind and those who have become blind from 21 to 50 should equally receive either help from the school authority to learn a trade and to read some raised type, in the same way as if they were under 21, or if they have passed through an institution, the old pupils should be assisted and supervised on the Saxon system, as soon as the funds can be obtained for that purpose, and it should be the duty of the inspectors of institutions for the blind to ascertain what supervision is exercised, and to report accordingly, this being one of the regulations which might reasonably be imposed by the Education Department as a general condition of the grant.

Endowments

248. We have ascertained in the course of our inquiries that in Scotland and in Ireland a few of the institutions for the blind and deaf and dumb have been brought by recent legislation under Endowed Schools Commissioners appointed specially for those countries.

249. In respect of the charitable institutions in England and Wales, we have received from the Chief Charity Commissioner a statement of the general powers of that Commission, and of their special powers over the same under the Endowed Schools Acts. These differ considerably from the powers more recently given by legislation for Scotland and Ireland.

250. In England, owing to the limit of time within which the Charity Commissioners could exercise their jurisdiction under the Endowed Schools Acts being fixed anterior to the foundation of most of the blind and deaf and dumb institutions, namely 1819, and from other causes mentioned in the statement of the Chief Commissioner, these institutions have not been dealt with by the Charity Commission.

251. The institutions for the blind and the deaf and dumb in England (except those under special statutes) are within the jurisdiction of the Charity Commissioners, under the general powers of the Charities Acts, and trustees have the power, if they should think necessary, to apply to the Charity Commissioners for an amended scheme, as the Gardner Trustees recently have done. The institutions for the blind are either wholly or partly educational or industrial. The income accruing to them from their endowments or trust funds was about 23,000 in 1887. The invested sums themselves arising in some cases from savings, amounted to about 500,000 sterling, in


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addition to which the institutions hold real property, sites, land, and buildings, amounting to about 300,000 in value.

252. Should the Education Acts be extended, as we suggest, so as to include the compulsory education of this class, it might be possible and right to apply some of the funds so liberated from educational purposes to the enlargement of the workshops connected with the institutions, or for the supervision and assistance of old pupils on the Saxon system; but should the funds be so rearranged, we recommend that they shall be exclusively employed for the benefit of the blind connected with the institution to which they belong. If this should be the case, we think that the precedent of recent legislation might be followed, and two unpaid Commissioners be temporarily added to the Charity Commissioners to be assessors and advisers in the preparation of any schemes which might be submitted by them to the governing body of these institutions, and the powers of the Charity Commissioners for England and Wales in respect of these institutions should be extended. But we have every reason to anticipate that many of the suggestions made in the report of this Commission will be cordially received and adopted by the governing bodies.

253. We think, however, that in any legislation it should be made quite clear that the sole object of legislation should be to extend the usefulness of the institutions and their endowments without prejudicially interfering with the powers or privileges of the existing governing bodies.

Pensions

254. With regard to the cognate subject of pensions, the amount of money thus given amounts to over 35,000 annually, which is the interest of the invested funds left by various charitable persons for that purpose. There appears to be no likelihood of the blind receiving any benefit from the funds applicable under the City of London Parochial Charities Act 1883. We have previously stated that the conditions of the pensions vary considerably. Some make the receipt at any time of parochial relief by the applicant a disqualification for pension. There is often a difficulty for the distributors of pensions to ascertain whether an applicant has ever been in receipt of parish relief, and this provision is a direct temptation to making a false return. We think that instead of excluding those who have ever received parish relief, it would be better, as in the Gardner Trust, only to exclude those who have received it within a year or two of their application, within which time it would be perfectly easy to verify the correctness of the applicants' return. Others cannot grant a pension to anyone below the age of 50 or 60. On that point we have already remarked that we consider the State should provide liberally for the aged blind, and when that is done there will not be the same necessity for limiting the age.

255. Without wishing in any way to divert the pensions from their original purpose, we should like to see the hard and fast conditions attached to some of them so relaxed as to enable the trustees to reach all meritorious cases of adults of any age, so that the pensions should act as an incentive to industry. The Charity Commissioners can now vary these conditions only on the application of the trustees, and they have hitherto received no application from them. We recommend that with respect to the pensions they shall be dealt with by the Charity Commissioners in the same way and under the same conditions as we have recommended with regard to the other endowments in paras. 252 and 253, and with the proviso that we have mentioned in para. 254 that the State should provide liberally for the aged blind.

Pensions - further suggestions

256. The following recommendations we make respecting pensions can be carried out without legislation, viz.,

257. Co-operation amongst all the various pension societies should be established, whereby a united register should be kept of all recipients, and thus the possibility be avoided of undeserving cases being relieved, and of blind persons becoming recipients of more than one pension, except under special circumstances, and with the knowledge of the trustees.

258. The pensions, except for the aged and infirm, should be so distributed as to assist those who are assisting themselves.


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259. The pensions should not be given quarterly in lump sums, as they are liable to be wasted and misused, either by the blind or by those who accompany them to the distributor of the money, but they should, as a rule, be paid weekly or monthly through the agency of either a local magistrate, medical practitioner, or of the parochial clergy, or minister, who might from time to time report on the conduct and deserts of the pensioners.

Saxon System

260. The Saxon system should be adopted as far as possible by all institutions. But any subvention under this system to the adult blind who have left institutions should not be given out of the Imperial Exchequer.

261. It is desirable that the institutions for the blind should start a system of supervision of the pupils who have been trained in their workshops, and should raise funds for their assistance after leaving the institutions, and for providing them with materials and obtaining a sale for their industrial work, and it would be quite practicable for some of the larger institutions to start this at once with their existing machinery. We think that this would be preferable to its being undertaken by the direct aid of the State. We think that it should be the duty of the inspectors of blind institutions to ascertain what supervision is exercised over the ex-pupils, and to report accordingly, this being one of the regulations which might be imposed by the Education Department as a general condition of the grant.

Higher or Secondary School

262. We think that the State might fairly be called upon to assist a secondary school for the blind, which should prepare the most intelligent for an University career, but we do not think that a large number would avail themselves of it, and the object might be obtained through scholarships, as the Fawcett scholarship, or grants such as have been given by the Gardner trustees.

Blind in Workhouses

263. We think that when the industrious and well conducted blind are unable to work, and have to fall back on the assistance of the Poor Law, the workhouse test should not be applied, and we recommend that there should be a liberal outdoor relief (which should not subject them to any legal disqualification) given to those who have friends to live with, and that the blind be not forced to go into the workhouse; and in the case of those who are admitted into the house, the workhouse selected for the purpose should be in a town where an institution or association for the blind already exists; the blind inmates, moreover, ought to be treated in a more generous way than the ordinary paupers, and power should be given to the guardians in London or elsewhere to set apart a separate ward or home for the reception of the aged pauper blind, or to combine with other boards in providing a separate home for them. In the case of women, it might be expedient to place them in a cottage home.

Teachers

We recommend -

264. That blind teachers should be placed under the same regulations as the seeing teachers in elementary schools before being allowed to teach, and in all cases should have such sighted assistance as may be necessary to insure the efficiency of their teaching.

Statistics

265. That for the purpose of the census there should be a uniform schedule of inquiry for the blind throughout the United Kingdom, including causes and extent of blindness. Every school or institution for the blind should have their pupils on admission examined by an oculist or medical man, and a record kept of the causes and extent of the blindness, which should be furnished to the Government inspector as well as a register of all pupils who have passed through the institution, and their subsequent career, whether successful or unsuccessful.


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Miscellaneous Suggestions

266. Besides such of the recommendations as would require the sanction of the Legislature, there are many improvements on the existing system which can be secured for the blind without any legislation or the intervention of the State, and we think that there is a disposition among the friends of the blind and the institutions for the blind throughout the country to welcome any suggestion which we may make to promote their welfare and which can be carried out.

We recommend -

(1) That greater attention should be paid generally to physical exercises and healthy outdoor sports, and gymnasia and covered play sheds should be attached to all schools for the blind.

(2) That the supervision of the blind at night should be obtained by a sighted officer sleeping in a cubicle in the same room, or in one with a window looking directly into the dormitory. We attach great importance to this.

(3) That there should be some sighted supervision of workshops.

(4) That except in special cases, or where music is selected as a profession, or where a pupil is being prepared for one of the liberal professions, everyone not physically disqualified should receive manual training.

(5) That boys up to 16 should not be employed in workshops with the adult blind.

(6) That the management of industrial work should be placed on a strictly commercial basis, and if it be found necessary to give any bonus it should be clearly shown in the books of the institution.

(7) We think -

That the industrial work taught in many of the institutions is not sufficiently practical, and that, generally speaking, the manual dexterity is not sufficiently developed when the pupils are young.

(8) That there should be greater solidarity among the institutions and interchange of information and opinion between them, so that they should work harmoniously together, and in the management of the workshops each endeavour to take up some one branch of work, and purchase from other institutions anything they may themselves have orders for, and that this policy should be reciprocal.

We recommend -

(9) That the intermarriage of the blind should be strongly discouraged.

(10) That information respecting the treatment of purulent ophthalmia should be circulated by the sanitary authority, or through the Post Office.

(11) That children with defective sight in elementary schools should be periodically examined by a medical officer, and the use of glasses, etc. ordered so as to preserve their sight as much as possible.

(12) That greater attention to ophthalmic surgery should be encouraged among general practitioners.

THE DEAF AND DUMB

Census

267. According to the census of 1851 the deaf and dumb in the United Kingdom were 17,300; in 1861 (in which decade additional care was taken), 19,588; in 1871, 18,150; and in 1881, 19,518. The increase in the second decade (of 1861) was not owing to a real increase in the deaf and dumb population, but to the obvious blunders in the enumeration in 1851. Some of these have been eliminated in the later census. From a comparison of the returns in the last four decades the census appears to be less inaccurate in 1881 than on previous occasions.

268. During the last two decades the proportions of the deaf and dumb to the general population, have decreased from 1 in every 1,484 in 1861, to 1 in every 1,742 in 1871, and again to 1 in every 1,794 in 1881.

269. The census of the deaf and dumb in England and Wales is very incomplete, and it is obviously open to causes of inaccuracy which do not occur in the case


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of the blind, as there are so many infants excluded; it is very difficult to obtain an accurate return of the deaf in their early years, as the parents are naturally unwilling to return a child as deaf and dumb till he is, at the least, five years old; the deafness, therefore, of children under that age cannot be accurately known, and is, therefore, probably understated.

270. The statistical inquiries in Ireland are more complete and accurate.

271. The Census Commissioners in Ireland have an agency of verification which does not exist in any other part of the kingdom; the Irish Constabulary is at their disposal, and they send back the documents for further investigation if they find anything in them which strikes them as requiring explanation.

272. We think that fuller and more accurate returns for the United Kingdom should be required in the next census, and we shall deal with them in greater detail later on.

(See infra paras. 572 to 577 and Appendix 21).

273. Of the misleading character of the statistics of the deaf, which are sometimes returned to the Census Commissioners, an amusing instance may be given.

In a district in Ireland the number of the' deaf and dumb' returned to the Census Commissioners was so wildly at variance with the ordinary proportion that the official documents were sent back again for a further investigation. It was then found that the sapient enumerator had returned as' deaf and dumb' not only those inhabitants who were old enough for their condition to be properly ascertained, but every infant child in the district too young to be able to speak.
274. The accuracy of the census in the United States has been questioned.

275. Mr. Graham Bell gives the corrected census of the deaf and dumb in the United States thus:-

DEAF and DUMB of the UNITED STATES (1880)

Where found

At home or in private families27,867
In schools (including day schools)5,393
In almshouses511
In benevolent institutions79
In hospitals or asylums for the insane24
In prisons4
33,878

Sexes

Males18,567
Females15,311
33,878

Ages

Under 6 years of age1,437
6 to 1610,046
16 to 215,013
21 years of age and over17,382
Total33,878

276. In the opinion of Dr. Gallaudet, President of the National Deaf Mute College at Washington, who has given very important and valuable evidence regarding the combined schools in the United States, the ratio of the deaf to the whole population in the United States has not increased materially over the figures of previous censuses, and he considers 1 in 1,800 as very nearly the proportion of deaf mutes at the present time, 1886.


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277. Mr. Graham Bell considers that the census of 1880 in America is in the main accurate, and that instead of the numbers of the deaf and dumb being over estimated in the 1880 census, they were under estimated, and that the number should have been given as 35,000.

278. He thinks it is of the greatest importance in the census returns to study the subject of the inheritance of deafness, and that to that end we should obtain not merely a census of those whom we may term deaf mutes, but that we should have a census of the deaf; we should know the adults who are afflicted with deafness as well as children, and if we ascertain the amount of deafness, and the age at which the deafness occurred, we can separate those that belong to the class deaf and dumb from the others. From the point of view of the study of heredity it is important that we should know those who become deaf in adult life. He has no doubt that we shall find in numerous cases of which we have no records that the parents or other relations had become deaf in comparatively early life.

279. We think that this knowledge, if it could be obtained, would be of great value.

280. It used to be estimated that one-sixth of the deaf and dumb population should be at school. The Elementary Education Act of 1870, however, fixed the same proportion for the whole population. Owing to the shorter average term of life of the deaf, it follows that a larger proportion must be of right school age. In Italy the proportion is estimated at one-fifth, i.e., between the ages of 9 and 18. It is still more in the United States, if the census returns of that country be correct.

281. The actual number of the deaf and dumb at school in the United Kingdom is, so far as we can ascertain, 3,138. According to the foregoing estimate the number should be over 4,000, and considering the omissions in the census returns, probably 4,500 would not be an excessive number for whom school accommodation should be provided, (i.e., those between the ages of 5 and 13, inclusive), and even more if the longer term of education so desirable for the deaf be decided upon.

282. The number of school age (i.e. of children between 5 and 15) stated as 5,129 in the last census, is a mere estimate arrived at roughly on the basis of the proportion between the deaf and dumb and the whole population.

Classification of the Deaf

283. Various systems of classification have been laid before us by witnesses. Mr. Van Praagh has suggested that the deaf and dumb may be divided into two classes; (1) those who are congenitally deaf, (2) those who have become deaf after birth. Then they may be divided according to their degree of deficiency, even including those who are hard of hearing.

(1) Those who perceive the human voice when it is used close to the ear, without being able, however, to distinguish the separate sounds; (2) those who can distinguish the vowels when they are loudly pronounced in the ear; (3) those who understand, but with difficulty, some words that are clearly pronounced in the ear; (4) those who without effort understand all that is clearly pronounced in their ear; (5) those who can hear a raised voice.
284. Roughly speaking, any child, unless he can hear an ordinary voice at a distance, of two or three feet from the ear, is unable to acquire language by the ordinary method. He should be classified as a deaf-mute, and could not be taught in an ordinary hearing school.

285. Dr. Gallaudet has divided the deaf into the following classes:-

(1) The 'speaking deaf' would include a child who has learnt to speak and has lost his hearing after he was five or six or seven years old. (2) Then the 'semi-speaking deaf' is one who has lost his hearing, we might say, at, perhaps, two or three years of age, who retains the power of uttering disconnected words, but has not the power of expressing himself in connected language. (3) Then we come to the 'speaking semi-deaf', comprising cases where from disease a child might lose his hearing partially and still have the power of speech, who was so deaf as not to be able to enter an ordinary school, but who could hear enough to be taught on the aural method. (4) 'Mute semi-deaf', one who has an amount of hearing sufficient to be able to be taught on the aural method. (5) The 'hearing mute' would comprise such children as hear perfectly well, but do not speak; such are almost invariably idiots.
286. It seems to us that there are really three classes of the deaf -
1. Those who are congenitally deaf.

2. Those who have become deaf after birth, these may be subdivided into -

(a) Those who became deaf before acquiring speech;
(b) Those who became deaf after having acquired some speech.
3. Those who possess some hearing power.

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287. We will deal with the last-mentioned class first. Of this class, there should be a careful and frequent inspection so as to test the amount of hearing power which, from time to time they may possess. An endeavour should be made, if not to treat them entirely by the aid of ear trumpets or other mechanical means, to use their amount of hearing as far as possible, for the purposes of correcting their pronunciation and intonation, and of endeavouring by the frequent use of the ear to improve the hearing which from disuse might otherwise become further impaired.

Aural or auricular instruction is a term used by Mr. T. A. Gillespie of the United States, to signify a mode of instruction given to children who have partial hearing. Mr. Gillespie uses instruments, including the audiphone and ear trumpets; and his experience as related to the Convention of Teachers in New York, 1884, was that about 16 per cent of the ordinary pupils of his instruction had a sufficient amount of hearing to derive benefit by this special means of training (Proceedings of Meeting at Madison, Wis., 1884; Washington, 1885).
288. Sir William Dalby, however, thinks the aural method of no great value. "Not sufficient to occupy very much of my time."

289. According to Mr. Graham Bell's evidence "conversation tubes" are used in three State combined schools and one private oral school in the United States. From 12* to 25 per cent of those who are classed as deaf could be improved through the ear, even of those who have not been born deaf, who were congenitally hard of hearing, (that expression means that they were so hard of hearing from birth that their hearing was never educated by the ordinary means, so that in several instances they have reached school age without having made any use of their hearing whatever, either so far as the acquisition of the power of speech, or so far as learning to understand what is spoken by others). This class, which is by no means a small one, though not congenitally deaf, are congenitally so hard of hearing that on arriving at school age they stand in the category of deaf mutes.

290. In New York experiments were made by Mr. Graham Bell in conjunction with Mr. Currier and Mr. Clarke, and in Washington by Professor Gordon. They were appointed a committee to investigate this subject of hearing power, and they devised an apparatus which they called an audiometer, for measuring the power of hearing.

The hearing power of several hundred deaf mutes has been tested by an apparatus like this. It consists essentially of two coils of wire and a magneto generator, which generates an intermittent current of electricity in this coil, the other coil being connected with a telephone, and currents are induced in the secondary coil by the action of the first, but the intensity of the induced current depends on the distance between the two coils, so that if you get the two coils in close proximity you get a tremendous noise; but as you draw one coil away from the other the sound becomes less and less till at a certain distance no sound can be perceived. Then the distance between the two coils we take as the measure of the hearing power (Graham Bell).
291. In experiments with this audiometer, he tested the hearing power of over 700 children in the public schools in Washington in order to arrive at an idea of what the normal hearing was, and he ascertained that:-
There are children in our public schools who hear worse than the best cases of deaf mutes in our institutions, and if we could classify the deafness of the whole population we should find a complete gradation from perfect hearing down to no hearing at all.
292. Mr. Graham Bell has constructed a scientific diagram of deafness which shows -

(a) amount of deafness (by measurement);

(b) age at which deafness supervened.

I would classify pupils by the natural defect alone, and there are only two elements to be determined which would completely define, as it were, by means of lines of latitude and longitude, the position of a deaf child in the whole mass of the deaf. These two elements to be determined are, first, the amount of the defect, and, secondly, the age or period of life at which the defect occurred. If we say that a child became totally deaf at five, it is understood what that means. We do not require to say that he is a semi-mute - that is the resultant - and if we say a child was semi-deaf from two months old, we know what that means. If we say a child was born deaf, we know that the mental condition must be entirely different. In America we measure the amount of hearing power of a child, so that we can say that a child has a hearing power of 10, 20, 30, 40, 50, or 60. Let us represent that by vertical lines, the lines of longitude of our map, and represent the age by horizontal lines or lines of latitude upon the map, then we completely define on that map the position of any deaf person. If you do not measure precisely the amount of hearing power you may measure it roughly. You may divide the deaf into two great classes, which you may term the deaf and the semi-deaf - those who have not a sufficient amount of hearing to perceive the difference of vocal sounds and those who have.
*Mr. Graham Bell thinks that 16 or 17 per cent of the whole number of pupils in their schools will prove fit subjects for auricular instruction (21,408).


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Causes of Deafness

293. The causes of deafness are various. Those which are non-congenital are preventable, such as catarrhal inflammatory affections of the middle ear; they demand immediate treatment, which they seldom obtain. A large number are the result of diseases in early childhood, such as scarlet and other exanthematous fevers. In the class of non-preventable cases are those where deafness is due to congenital deformities arising from arrested development in the internal ear.

294. The following were the causes of adventitious deafness in the United States noted in the course of the census of 1880.

CAUSES OF ADVENTITIOUS DEAFNESS IN THE UNITED STATES

The list of causes accepted and tallied by the officers of the 1880 Census

Meningitis2,856
Scarlet fever2,695
Malarial and typhoid fevers571
Measles448
Fevers (non-malarial)381
Catarrh and catarrhal fevers324
Other inflammations of air-passages142
Falls323
Abscesses281
Whooping-cough195
Nervous affections170
Scrofula131
Quinine78
Blows and contusions74
Inflammations of the ear72
Diphtheria70
Hydrocephalus63
Teething54
Mumps51
Smallpox and variola47
Erysipelas36
Fright32
Water in the ear25
Sunstroke21
Noises and concussions21
Tumours11
Chicken-pox10
Struck by lightning10
Foreign bodies in the ear9
Salt rheum3
Malformation of the ear2
Syphilis2
Consumption1
9,209

Congenital Deafness

295. With regard to hereditary deafness and dumbness, it may proceed from two main causes:-

(I) From the marriage of toto-congenital deaf-mutes.
(II) From consanguineous marriages.

I.

296. It has been supposed in America that the increase of the deaf and dumb is due to the increasing number of intermarriages between congenital deaf mutes, and


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the consequent hereditary transmission of this defect. In support of this it is said that before education was imparted to deaf-mutes, and before they were congregated in various educational institutions, hardly any intermarried.

297. In Germany, Switzerland, and Italy, where the oral system prevails, it is found that the deaf and dumb do not intermarry to the same extent as they do in England and the United States. In the oral schools in America the pupils to a large extent do marry deaf mutes, but the larger proportion marry hearing persons.

298. This subject has been much discussed, both in England and America. Dr. Buxton quotes from a paper read before the Medical Society at Liverpool:

Assuming, for the purpose of arriving now at a definite practical conclusion, that Dr. Peet's estimate is as nearly correct as the nature of the case and the present state of our knowledge will admit of, we find that the probability of congenital deafness in the offspring is nearly seven times greater when both parents are deaf than when only one is so. In the latter case 1 child in 135, less than 0.75 per cent, proves to be deaf, but in the former, out of 140, 7, i.e. 5 per cent are found to be deaf, the proportion of 1 in 20 being to 1 in 135 as 6.75 to 1. In other words, if we suppose a given number of children (540) the issue of mixed marriages between the deaf and the hearing, and an equal number sprung from the intermarriage of the deaf, there would be 27 deaf-mutes among the children of the latter, while there would only be four in the families of the former.

Those facts are derived from Hartford, in Connecticut, New York, Paris, Gröningen, London, Liverpool, Manchester, and from Ireland.

299. Professor E. A. Fay, Ph.D., the editor of the "American Annals of the Deaf," while admitting that "the statistics on the subject are still too limited and incomplete to enable us to form positive conclusions", has formulated the following conclusions as "probable":-
1. Persons who have deaf-mute relatives, whether themselves deaf-mute or hearing, marrying persons who have deaf-mute relatives, whether themselves deaf-mutes or hearing, are likely to have deaf-mute children.

2. Persons deaf-mutes from birth or from early infancy, marrying each other, especially if either partner has deaf-mute relatives, are likely to have deaf-mute children.

3. Persons adventitiously deaf, and not having deaf-mute relatives, marrying each other, are not likely to have deaf-mute children.

4. Deaf-mutes, whether congenitally or adventitiously deaf, not having deaf-mute relatives, and marrying hearing persons who have not deaf-mute relatives, are not likely to have deaf-mute children.

300. Probably there is no one who has investigated this subject more closely than Mr. Graham Bell, who has gone very fully into the subject in his evidence, and in various publications laid before the Commission. He states:-
It is evident that one of the chief causes of congenital deafness is a hereditary pre-disposition. That is manifested by the fact that of the 2,262 congenital deaf-mutes, mentioned on page 13 of my memoir, more than one half, or 54.5 per cent, had other members of their family deaf and dumb.
301. In concluding this subject of the causes of congenital deafness, he thinks we must undoubtedly assume that in the majority of cases some ancestral cause operates, whatever it may be; and he is very much inclined to the belief that there is an arrest in the development of the nervous system.

302. There is a considerable variety of opinion among both officers of institutions and scientific inquirers in the United States as to the results of such intermarriages causing a deaf variety of the human race, and the scientific testimony furnished by Mr. Graham Bell, while admitting the perfect possibility of such a result, leads to the conclusion that it would only occur after a succession of marriages of that character, through a great number of generations, and under circumstances which would hardly be likely to recur in every generation. There are certain conditions which Mr. Graham Bell lays down as necessary to produce such a result, viz.:-

That large numbers of the congenitally deaf shall marry one another, and that their congenitally deaf children, if they have any, shall again marry congenitally deaf; and that their congenitally deaf children, if they have any, shall again marry congenitally deaf and so on; that that alone. will result in an increasing proportion of deaf offspring in each succeeding generation, and ultimately after a certain length of time, which we cannot calculate at the present time, a true breed or race will be formed. It is a very important question to find out whether that condition is being fulfilled, and it is being fulfilled.
303. He cites the case of the deaf-mutes who left the Illinois Institution, 272 of whom married deaf-mutes and 21 hearing persons. Only 16 of all these have deaf-mute children, but the absolute number is, of course, not so important as the relative number. From an equal number of marriages of hearing persons, according to his calculation, there should not have been one deaf child.


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304. In his memoir, on page 16, he gives an analysis in Table XX of 1,989 deaf-mutes who have married:-

These deaf-mutes are taken from New England State, from New York State, from Ohio State, from Indiana State, and from Illinois State. Then in Table XXI I range them according to the period of birth. Of those who were born before 1810, 129 are recorded to have married. Of these 72 married deaf-mutes, that is 55.8 per cent Of those born between 1810 and 1839, 80.7 per cent married deaf-mutes. Of those born between 1840 and 1859, 84.1 per cent married deaf-mutes. Of those born after 1860 (and that does not bring it down to very recent times) 91.7 per cent married deaf-mutes.
305. On the general question as to the probability or otherwise of deaf persons having deaf offspring, Mr. Bell says the general result is simply this,
With one parent, who is a congenitally deaf-mute, one-tenth of the children are deaf, and with both parents congenitally deaf-mutes, about one-third are born deaf.

The indications are that we have at least 607 deaf-mute children of deaf-mutes in the United States living before 1880.

If these figures are to be relied upon, one deaf mute in every 34 among the congenitally deaf-mutes is the child of deaf-mute parents

It is quite true that up to the present time the majority of children of deaf-mutes can hear, but the proportion of deaf offspring of deaf-mutes is enormously greater than the proportion of deaf offspring in the community at large. Now these deaf children are going to have a larger proportion of deaf offspring than their parents had, if they marry deaf-mutes, and 95 per cent of all those who marry are going to marry deaf-mutes. That is again the point; it is the continuous selection from generation to generation.

306. Mr. Graham Bell's tabulated statements relating to the intermarriage of deaf-mutes, show an analysis of 757 cases of intermarriage between deaf mutes.

MARRIAGE OF DEAF MUTES

Analysis of 757 cases

femalestotal
males
deaf muteshear
ing
cause of deafness
connonnot
malesdeaf mutescause
of
deaf
ness
con86934813240
non1081155326302
not273512110193
hearing868-22
total females22924923049757

con = congenital; non = non-congenital; not = not stated
Of 757 males, 22 were hearing persons, and 735 were deaf-mutes.

Of 757 females, 49 were hearing persons, and 708 were deaf-mutes,

Hence, of 1,514 persons, 71 were hearing persons, and 1,443 were deaf-mutes.

The general result that that table shows is, that of the 1,514 persons who intermarried in those 757 cases, 1,443 were deaf-mutes, and 71 were hearing persons, and of the 1,443 deaf-mutes, 71 or 5 per cent married hearing persons, and 1,372 or 95 per cent married among themselves.

INTERMARRIAGE OF DEAF MUTES

Analysis of 402 cases

femalestotal
males
congenitalnon-congenital
malescongenital8693179
non-congenital108115223
total females194208402
Of 179 congenitally deaf males, 86 married congenitally deaf, and 93 non-congenitally deaf, females.

Of 194 congenitally deaf females 86 married congenitally deaf, and 108 non-congenitally deaf males.


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Hence, of 373 congenitally deaf persons, 172, or 46.11 per cent married congenitally deaf persons, and 201, or 53.89 per cent, married non-congenitally deaf persons.

Of 223 non-congenitally deaf males, 108 married congenitally deaf, and 115 married non-congenitally deaf, females. Of 208 non congenitally deaf females, 93 married congenitally deaf, and 115 married non-congenitally deaf males. Hence, of 431 non-congenitally deaf persons, 201 or 46.64 per cent married congenitally deaf persons, and 230 or 53.36 per cent married non-congenitally deaf persons. I would also present the Commission with an analysis of 607 cases of deaf children of deaf-mute parents.

DEAF-MUTE CHILDREN OF DEAF-MUTE PARENTS

Analysis of 607 Cases

SexNo.cause of deafnessNo.
males271congenital328
females275non-congenital40
not stated61not stated239
607607
Of 368 deaf-mute children of deaf-mute parents, 328 or 89.1 per cent were congenitally deaf, and 40 or 10.9 per cent were non-congenitally deaf.
Period of birthfather
deaf
mother
unknown
mother
deaf
father
unknown
both
parents
deaf
Total
1800-93--3
1810-912-3
1820-966113
1830-914111136
1840-923142057
1850-9313041102
1860-9323561128
1870-92137120178
    Ascertained131135254520
    Not ascertained3584487
        Total166143298607

307. We think that there is sufficient evidence to prove that there is a real danger of an increase of congenital deafness from this cause, and recommend that the intermarriages of the toto-congenitally deaf should be strongly discouraged.

II.

308. The second cause is the intermarriage of blood relations, such as first cousins, but the statistics are not sufficiently accurately kept to be able to arrive at more than general conclusions.

309. In the Alpine regions in Lombardy and Piedmont, the percentage of deaf-mutes is found to be three times greater than in any other part of Italy, which may be attributed to the prevalence of consanguineous marriages.

310. There are some interesting statistical tables in the Irish Census Report of 1871, and the question of consanguineous marriages as a supposed cause of deaf-mutism has been specially investigated in the last three Irish Censuses. In the opinion of the Census Commissioners the results tend to establish these suppositions as facts, and to show that according as the degree of relationship is more remote, mutism occurs in a less number of cases. Thus in 135 cases where the parents of mutes were related previously to marriage, 84 were in the degree of first cousins; 40 in that of second; 10 in that of third, and 1 in that of fourth. The Irish Census Commissioners add


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that their researches "clearly prove that mutism is often transmitted by hereditary taint or family peculiarity."

311. Dr. Buxton says it was the opinion of the late Dr. Peet, father of the principal of the New York Institution, that one out of every ten congenitally deaf-mutes is the offspring of consanguineous marriages, and the witness adds that this coincides with his own experience at Liverpool and in London.

312. The result of our own inquiries among the 30 deaf and dumb institutions of the United Kingdom is that, so far as those statistics enabled them to tell, out of the total number of pupils, 2,485, the number of cases which were the offspring of cousins was 99. On the other hand the number of cases the offspring of deaf and dumb parents was 42, and of parents having deaf relatives was 72.*

313. Mr. Graham Bell says:-

So far as my researches have gone, I have given considerable attention to this subject, and I can see no proof, at least we have no statistics that undeniably prove that a consanguineous marriage is a cause of deafness; but I do see abundant proof that a consanguineous marriage occurring in a family in which there is already deafness increases the deafness in the offspring; it is simply a case of selection; the family peculiarities, whatever they are, are increased.†
314. We think from the evidence and statistics before us that consanguineous marriages should be strongly discouraged, especially where deafness has occurred in the family.

Education of the Deaf - Preliminary Remarks

315. Before discussing the education of the deaf arid dumb, we must remark that their case stands on a different footing from that of the blind, because when the adult, or even the partially educated has become afflicted with deafness, his condition differs little from that of the ordinary population, and, therefore, less special education is needed for those above 13 or 14 years of age than is required for the blind.

316. Again, in adult life, there is no need for special modes of industrial training, nor for special workshops for the deaf and dumb, consequently the education of the young has mainly engaged the attention of your Commissioners.

317. Dumbness is usually the result of deafness, but there is no physiological connection between the two; those who are dumb and not deaf are mentally deficient.

318. There is some inaccuracy and confusion of ideas in the use of the popular nomenclature, deaf and dumb. The class should be spoken of as the deaf; the terms "deaf-mute" and "deaf and dumb" should be strictly applied to such only as are totally deaf and completely dumb.

History of the Education of the Deaf and Dumb

319. In a paper read at the Society of Arts in 1872 by Dr. (now Sir George) Dasent, he thus summarised the early history of the education of the deaf in most cases up to the end of the 16th century:- "It was the hard fate of the deaf and dumb to have been confounded and classed with idiots, and to be pronounced inaccessible to reason, because the want of hearing had prevented their instruction and speech." Further on, he says: "Earlier, indeed, in that century, Rabelais, of whom all of you have no doubt heard, though few of you have probably read, makes the first mention that I know of 'lip-reading', of which I shall have something to say further on, and tells of a young Italian, one Nello de Gabrielis, who, though deaf, understood all that was said by merely watching the lips of speakers. But it was in Spain, the land of noble exceptions, that the first systematic attempt to consider the deaf and dumb as rational beings, and to show that they were capable of articulate speech, was made by Pedro de Ponce, a Spanish monk, at Sahagun, and confessor to the King. This benevolent ecclesiastic, in 1570, instructed four deaf and dumb pupils in speech. He had worthy followers, both in his own country, where Ramirez de Carrion followed his example, and also abroad. In England, it was William Holder, and especially Wallis, Professor of Mathematics, at the end

*But out of the 2,485 cases summarised, at least 1,477 are in institutions where either no record is kept, or where the record kept is evidently unreliable.

†See the Report of the Halifax Institution for 1877.


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of the 17th century, in the University of Oxford, who distinguished themselves by these acts of philanthropy. In Holland the oral instruction of the deaf and dumb found an advocate in the physician Amman. In Germany, Kruse, of Liegnitz, in Silesia, and Schulze, in Dresden. But these were but individual efforts of isolated philanthropists, though they are remarkable as agreeing in one thing, and that was the possibility of instructing this afflicted class of persons in articulate speech." It was not, however, until the middle of the 18th century that any organised attempt was made to provide schools for the general instruction of deaf children; then it was that the French system of communication by signs, invented by the Abbé de l'Epée, was developed by this successor, the Abbé Sicard, 1760. The system of Amman was brought to perfection in Germany by the famous Heinicke, who was born in 1727 and died in 1790, and who is considered the founder of the German system.

320. The first school for the deaf and dumb in Great Britain was started on the combined system in 1760 by Braidwood in Edinburgh, and removed to London in 1783. In 1792 the London Asylum was founded of which Dr. Watson, the nephew of Braidwood, was the first principal. Signs and the manual alphabet gradually supplanted speech, and so it came to pass that the national system in France and in Great Britain became "sign and manual"; whereas, in Germany, Heinicke used the pure oral system, which is still the national system, and now prevails throughout the whole German Empire.

321. In America the first teacher of the deaf and dumb was Gallaudet; he studied in France the system there practised, and taking with him Clerc, a deaf and dumb pupil of Sicard (De l'Epée's successor), opened the Hartford School on the sign and manual system, which is still taught to the majority of the children in American schools; although of late years, since the establishment of some schools on the pure oral system through the exertions of the Honourable Gardiner Greene Hubbard, and others, speech is much more in favour than formerly, and most schools teach speech to some of their pupils, though the number of schools where the teaching is by speech though increasing is yet small in comparison with the continental countries of Europe.

322. In England until 1871, when the Association for the Oral Instruction of the Deaf and Dumb was started by the late Baroness M. A. de Rothschild and others, for the purpose of making the pure oral system generally known, nearly all the schools of the United Kingdom were on the sign and manual system, the exceptions being Mr. Van Asch's small private school, and the small Jewish Deaf and Dumb Home (both then recently established), and a few schools or institutions where a combined system was more or less used, articulation being taught as an accomplishment. In France the national system of signs and the manual alphabet has been abandoned for the pure oral system since the International Congress at Milan in 1880.

323. This system has now become almost universal throughout Europe.

Present State of Education

324. In this country it has hitherto been left to private benevolence to found institutions for the education and maintenance of the deaf and dumb of ordinary school age. The number of these institutions has been gradually increasing, and has recently been largely supplemented by board school classes; still, we have reason to believe that there are many deaf and dumb of all ages who are wholly uneducated; for instance, in London there are about 300 at school out of about 500. At Newcastle we were informed that only two thirds of the deaf and dumb of school age of the four northern counties were under instruction, and that probably 62 were growing up without education.

325. It has been estimated that there were at school in the United Kingdom -

Deaf and dumb
In 18511,300
In 18611,640
In 18711,979
In 18812,646
In 18883,138


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Therefore the number has been more than doubled in 37 years, constant progress has been made in many of the institutions in the country, with improved buildings, classrooms, and a higher class of teachers; and greater interest in the education of the deaf and dumb has been shown by conferences and public meetings, which have resulted in deputations to the Education Department.

School Board in London

326. As an instance of various applications which have been made to the Education Department by school boards to obtain further assistance for the education of the deaf and dumb, and even since it was referred to us to report on this subject to Your Majesty, we cite the following correspondence:-

327. The London School Board, 18th March 1887, addressed the following letter to the Education Department:-

The Board have had under their consideration the question of again applying to the Education Department to allow grants for the instruction of deaf and dumb children. On the application of the Board in 1884 the Education Department consented to allow grants on the following conditions:-
(I) The deaf and dumb children will be borne on the books of the boys' or girls' departments (according to their sex) of the schools to which the classes are attached, and their attendances included in the total number of attendances for the purpose of calculating the average.

(II) The children who are sufficiently advanced for any standard will be presented for examination. Her Majesty's inspector will be assisted by the teachers in examining them.

(III) Those who are not able to take the standard work will be treated as exceptions, and entered on the exception schedule.

(IV) The inspector will see the class at work, and add to his report his opinion as to the efficiency of the instruction.

This application was subsequently withdrawn by the Board, as they could not see their way to comply with the proposal of the Department. The above conditions have again been desired by the Board, who are still of opinion that the proposals are impracticable. But considering the great expenses involved in the instruction of deaf and dumb children, the Board would urge upon the Education Department the desirableness of appointing a special examiner of deaf and dumb children, and of allowing a grant upon his report.
328. To that letter this answer was sent:-
My Lords are not prepared to offer any special grants for deaf and dumb children till the Royal Commission inquiring into the education of such children have reported.
329. The London School Board state that they consider it their duty in London to provide elementary instruction for all children for whom efficient and suitable instruction is not otherwise provided. The Board have therefore had to provide special instruction for a considerable number of deaf and dumb, and blind children.
In September 1874 the Board appointed an instructor, who had had 30 years' experience in teaching deaf mutes, to initiate a system of deaf mute instruction at the Wilmot Street School, Bethnal Green. At first there were only five children in attendance, but this number soon increased. It was then found necessary to open at successive periods additional classes in other parts of the Metropolis. The deaf and dumb children are collected and taught at centres, of which, at Lady Day 1888, there were 13. The number on the roll at these centres was 351, and the average attendance 286. The instruction was upon a system described by the superintendent as a combined system (articulation and finger alphabet) until July 1877, when the oral system, which is now in force, was adopted.

The deaf and dumb children cannot be taught with the other children. They are consequently taught in classes apart, and are not examined by Her Majesty's Inspectors.

At Lady Day, 1888, the staff consisted of a superintendent, 16 women and 8 men assistants, 5 women ex-pupil teachers, and 8 girl pupil teachers (Report of London School Board, p. 47).

School Boards in the Provinces

330. The establishment of school board day classes for the education of the deaf has been making considerable progress throughout the country; and the example of London has been followed by some large towns in England and Scotland. With the exception of the class at Sheffield and the older children in the Leeds class, who were


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admitted before the change of method of instruction, and a few others considered to be unsuitable for oral teaching, all the pupils in these classes are taught on the pure oral system. In 1879 the Sheffield class was started; Leeds in 1881; Greenock and Nottingham in 1883; Bradford, Bristol, and Dundee in 1885; and Leicester (two classes) and Govan (Glasgow) in 1886. The total number of children under instruction in 1888 in these provincial classes was 176, and the average cost per head was 7 19s. 10d. The number of male teachers was 3, and of female teachers 16. The boards consider that the teaching imparted is sufficient to start the pupils in life, and to give them the means of communicating with the world at large, provided that the children remain long enough, but Greenock is the only one of these provincial boards that supplies any industrial training.

The total number of children under instruction by the School Boards in London and the Provinces is 577.

Guardians of the Poor and Education of Deaf Mutes

331. It will be convenient to recapitulate here the existing laws affecting the education and maintenance of the blind, which for the most part apply also to the case of the deaf and dumb.*

ENGLAND AND WALES

Poor Persons liable to Relief for Wife or Children unless Blind or Deaf and Dumb
4 & 5 Will. 4. c. 76. s. 56. And be it further enacted, That from and after the passing of this Act all relief given to or on account of the wife, or to or on account of any child or children under the age of sixteen, not being blind or deaf and dumb, shall be considered as given to the husband of such wife, or to the father of such child or children, as the case may be, and any relief given to or on account of any child or children under the age of sixteen of any widow shall be considered as given to such widow: Provided always, that nothing herein contained shall discharge the father and grandfather, mother and grandmother, of any poor child from their liability to relieve and maintain any such poor child in pursuance of the provisions of a certain Act of Parliament passed in the forty-third year of the reign of Her late Majesty Queen Elizabeth, intituled "An Act for the Relief of the Poor".
Guardians may maintain and educate Deaf and Dumb or Blind Poor Children in Certified Schools
25 & 26 Vict. (1862) c. 43. s. 1. The guardians of any parish or union may send any poor child to any school certified as herein-after mentioned, and supported wholly or partially by voluntary subscriptions, the managers of which shall be willing to receive such child, and may pay out of the funds in their possession the expenses incurred in the maintenance, clothing, and education of such child therein during the time such child shall remain at such school, not exceeding the total sum which would have been charged for the maintenance of such child if relieved in the workhouse during the same period, and in the conveyance of such child to and from the same, and in the case of death the expenses of his or her burial.

9. No child shall be sent under this Act to any school which is conducted on the principles of a religious denomination to which such child does not belong.

10. ... The word "school" shall extend to any institution established for the instruction of blind, deaf, dumb, lame, deformed, or idiotic persons, but shall not apply to any certified reformatory school.

Guardians may provide for maintenance and Education of Adults
30 & 31 Vict. (1867) c. 106. s, 21. The guardians may provide for the reception, maintenance, and instruction of any adult pauper, being blind or deaf and dumb, in any hospital or institution established for the reception of persons suffering under such infirmities, and may pay the charges incurred in the conveyance of such pauper to and from the same, as well as those incurred in his maintenance, support, and instruction therein.
Guardians may send Deaf-Mute or Blind Children to Uncertified Schools
31 & 32 Vict. (1868) c. 122. s. 42. The guardians of any union or parish may, with the approval of the Poor Law Board, send any poor deaf and dumb or blind child to any school fitted for the reception of such child, though such school shall not have been certified under the provisions of the Act of the 25th and 26th years of Victoria, chapter 43.
*The number of deaf and dumb children in England and Wales in receipt of relief on the 2nd September 1887, who were above 5 and under 15 years of age, was 616, of whom 575 were receiving instruction in special schools, 33 in workhouse schools and 8 in public elementary schools other than workhouse schools. There were 56 children in receipt of indoor or outdoor relief and not under instruction, but these were mostly weak-minded or idiotic (Parliamentary Return No. 326 of 1887).


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Guardians may subscribe towards support of Institutions, Associations, etc.
42 & 43 Vict. (1879) c. 54. s. 10. Whereas by section 4 of the Poor Law Amendment Act 1851, guardians are authorised, with such consent as is therein mentioned, to subscribe towards the support and maintenance of any public hospital or infirmary as therein mentioned; and it is expedient to extend the said section. Be it therefore enacted as follows:-

The provisions of the said section shall extend to authorise the guardians, with such consent as is therein mentioned, to subscribe towards any asylum or institution for blind persons, or for deaf and dumb persons or for persons suffering from any permanent or natural infirmity, or towards any association or society for aiding such persons, or for providing nurses, or for aiding girls or boys in service, or towards any other asylum or institution which appears to the guardians, with such consent as aforesaid, to be calculated to render useful aid in the administration of the relief of the poor.

Provided always that nothing herein contained shall authorise any subscription to any asylum or institution unless the Local Government Board be satisfied that the paupers under the guardians have, or could have, assistance therein in case of necessity.

Guardians may pay a reasonable charge required by an Institution for Blind or Deaf-Mute Children
45 & 46 Vict. (1882) c. 58. s. 13. The guardians of any union, who send any pauper child to a school certified under the Act of 25th and 26th years of the reign of Her present Majesty, cap. 43, may pay the reasonable expenses incurred in the maintenance, clothing, and education of such child whilst in such school, to an amount not exceeding such rate of payment as may be sanctioned by the Local Government Board for pauper children sent to such school, anything contained in the said Act to the contrary notwithstanding.
332. It has been brought to our notice that in several cases where the parents of deaf and dumb or blind children were unable to afford the cost of their being educated and maintained in proper institutions, the guardians considered themselves exempted from the duty of educating the child at the cost of the union under the above Acts, on the ground that the parents were not paupers. We accordingly requested the Local Government Board to furnish us with their interpretation of the law on this point. The annexed letter shows that it is not a condition precedent to such action on the part of the guardians that the parents should be paupers.

Local Government Board, Whitehall, S.W.,
February 21, 1888.

Sir,

I am directed by the Local Government Board to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 28th ultimo, asking, on behalf of the Royal Commission on the Blind, the Deaf and Dumb, etc., the Board's view as to the power of guardians to contribute to the maintenance in suitable institutions of deaf and dumb children whose parents are not paupers. The Board direct me to state that in their opinion it is competent to the guardians to send to a suitable school a deaf and dumb or blind child whose parent, though poor, may not be a pauper in receipt of relief. The approval of this Board is, however, necessary to the sending of the child unless the school has been certified under the 25 & 26 Vict. c. 43. (see s. 42 of the 31 & 32 Vict. s. 122).

Moreover, it appears to the Board that, having regard to s. 56 of the 4 & 5 Will, 4. c. 76. relief given to or on account of a deaf and dumb or blind child is not relief to the father of such child.

The Board may add that the power given to the guardians in this matter should, of course, only be exercised when the parent is unable to pay for the child's maintenance, education, etc. in the school.

I am, etc.
(Signed) S. B. PROVIS,
Assistant Secretary.

The Secretary to the
Royal Commission on the Blind, the Deaf and Dumb, etc.,
6, Old Palace Yard, S.W.

333. Before dealing with the various systems of education we must observe that it is difficult to realise the difference in educational requirements between a hearing child when he first goes to school and a deaf and dumb child of the same age. The former, though he may not know how to read or write, has been in communication by speech with those around him, and has acquired by the ear some facility in expressing himself more or less grammatically. The latter can only express himself by natural signs, or at the most say a few words if he have any remains of speech, and under the most favourable circumstances his vocabulary is limited to a few words either by speech or by finger language.

334. It has been urged upon us by some witnesses that parents should be advised and encouraged to teach their children a little writing and a few simple words before they come to school, as in the majority of cases the children come to school having been entirely neglected and allowed to run wild. Some institutions have issued instructions to parents, specimens of which we insert in the Appendix.


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Special Teaching required

335. With the deaf and dumb the main problem to be solved is how to teach them, and what shall be the character of their education

336. The deaf and dumb cannot be taught in classes with hearing children, and therefore are at a disadvantage compared with the blind; they require throughout their education special training; and under whatever system they may be taught, separate schools or classes, and special teachers are manifestly indispensable.

337. Their education must therefore be carried out either in -

1. Institutions, or
2. Day schools.
1. Institutions

338. Until day classes were recently established by some of the school boards, there was no provision for the education or the deaf except in institutions where board and accommodation were provided for either (a) those whose parents could afford to pay good fees, (b) those who were elected by the votes of subscribers, or (c) those who were sent or assisted by the guardians on the payment of a certain sum, (from 7 to 25 a year) towards their education and maintenance, which in some cases amounted to not more than one half or one third of the total cost, the remainder being provided either by the parents or by private charity.

339. It is considered by many witnesses that the education of the deaf and dumb can be better carried on in institutions than in day schools. Besides this, there must be always many who are physically weak and demand the special care and training which they could not get m their own homes.

340. If the parents would take, or were capable of taking, an interest in their children's education, they would be better at home; the very best institution can never entirely replace the influence of home, but if a child goes home to a squalid dwelling, where the parents cannot look after it or keep up the education acquired at school, then it is much better that the child should be taken care of by intelligent teachers at an institution rather than that it should remain in a home where it is not properly cared for.

341. One witness considers that five years' instruction as a day scholar is not more than equivalent to one half the same time spent as a boarder in school.

342. In his view, supervision, continuous attendance, and extra discipline, to which the children are made subservient under a boarding school system, are absolutely lost under the day school system; on the other hand, it is contended that the isolation in a residential institution renders them more dependent on others and less likely to be able to buffet with the world when the time comes for them to leave school. it is also urged that for those taught on the pure oral system, the habit of mixing with strangers, of playing with hearing children, and of accustoming themselves to make known their requirements to strangers by means of speech is of great advantage to them. To mix with the hearing and speaking world has a widening and invigorating effect on their minds, and they are less likely to remain a class apart, mixing almost exclusively with the deaf and dumb, the consequence of which is frequent intermarriage.

2. Day Schools

343. The difficulty of educating children, in country districts or small towns where there may not be sufficient to form a class, has generally prevented the introduction of day schools, and is used as an argument in favour of residential institutions; but this difficulty is grappled with on the Continent, and, as we are informed, successfully, in the school at Schleswig, which takes all the deaf children of the whole province of Schleswig Holstein, and at Brühl, near Cologne, and at Cologne itself, where there are schools which satisfy the requirements of the Rhenish Provinces. It is done in this way, the children attending these schools, unless their parents or friends, live sufficiently near, are boarded out in families corresponding with their own station in life, not more than two or three in a family, and


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the teachers of the schools from time to time visit the houses where the pupils are lodged, to see that they are properly fed and cared for; the parents pay towards the maintenance of their children in accordance with their means. A similar plan is successfully practised in London by the Association for the oral instruction of the deaf and dumb, but these children are generally of a class above those ordinarily attending public elementary schools.

344. In regard to the success of the "day school" system, those school boards who have started classes for deaf children are not unanimous. The London School Board remark that the classification of the deaf scholars according to their qualifications is impossible, and that the instruction amounts almost to individual teaching. They also find that the usual impediments to regular attendance, experienced in the case of hearing children, prevail in the case of the deaf, viz.: distance from centres, bad weather, want of boots and clothing, illness, etc. The Greenock and Leicester Boards also find that signs are used at home, thus counteracting the effect of the pure oral teaching given in school. On the other hand, seven boards approve of the day school principle. The Leeds Board find that parents prefer sending children to a local school rather than to a boarding school; at Nottingham it is found the children are far less "clannish", and are assisted in speech and lip-reading by relatives and friends at home, and Bristol, Dundee, and Govan bear similar testimony.

345. In Berlin there is a large day school at which the children are taught from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m., and then return home; as many live at some distance the tram or railway fare is defrayed by the town in cases where the parents are poor.

346. In London it has been found necessary to establish homes in which the children can be kept during the week, but the experiment is not entirely satisfactory, nor do we consider that the London homes which we visited compare favourably with institutions. These were originated by Dr. Stainer with the best intentions, and to supply a want which the school board, under the existing state of the law, were unable to meet. There was not sufficient supervision either by Dr. Stainer or a committee; there was a difficulty about the meals in the middle of the day, which resulted in the children being insufficiently fed, and consequently liable to chilblains and other skin diseases, demanding regular medical supervision. Though they were certified and under Government inspection, when we visited them, the homes had not been inspected for twelve months. We do not think that the slight difference in cost in favour of the homes over that of institutions compensated for the disadvantages connected with them; and we consider that the School Board should not divest itself of all responsibility for the health of the deaf and dumb children who are brought together in these classes.

347. It might be possible in London and other large towns to start day schools in one or more of the suburban districts, at which the children might attend by travelling to and fro by tram or railway, and thus obtain the benefit of country air, or in the neighbourhood, of which they might be boarded out in families of their own station in life, in which case, of course, it should be the special duty of the school authority to look after the welfare of the children under their charge, and to be responsible for the general working of the boarding out system. The boarding out of pauper children has not been tried long enough in England to enable us to recommend it for a class which would require much more care and attention than ordinary children, although the reports made by Miss M. H. Mason to the Local Government Board, 1885-6, 7, and 8, show that the trial has not only been fairly successful in the case of the latter, but has made steady progress in each succeeding year. In Scotland it has been the practice of the Parochial Boards to board out orphan and deserted children as well as idiot children. It is, however, except under careful supervision, open to abuses.

348. If the boarding out system is to supplement the day school, it would be necessary that the school authority should have the power of establishing boarding homes, or of paying towards the maintenance of children boarded out in the same way as the guardians now have in respect to institutions.

349. In the United States, the policy of decentralisation, or the avoidance of collecting the deaf and dumb in large schools, is advocated by Mr. Graham Bell, principally to avoid the intermarriage of the deaf and dumb, which, he maintains, is the result of the deaf and dumb of both sexes being trained together, taught a language


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different from that of the bulk of the population, and becoming an isolated class. He, therefore, is in favour of deaf children associating freely with hearing children, and their own parents and friends.

350. As an additional argument in favour of day schools, he also urges that -

The nearer the school is brought to the home of the pupil, the less likelihood is there that he will escape instruction.

Mothers will not part with their children except upon compulsion.

If the State could offer to the parent of a deaf child either an institution or a day school, then he could advocate compulsory education.

In theory the best school for a deaf child is a school with only one in it; but of course it is impracticable, it is too expensive.

The practicability of any great development of day schools will depend upon the possibility of conducting very small schools of this kind economically to the State; for the scattered condition of the deaf and dumb in the community precludes the idea of large day schools, excepting in the great centres of population.

351. He therefore proposes -
To supplement the institutions by a large development of small day schools, so that there shall be in each state one central institution which shall accommodate the children who cannot attend day schools; and, where it is practicable in any State, that the day schools be affiliated with the public schools so that the children shall be in the public school buildings, in a special room under a special teacher, but thrown in contact with the hearing children in every possible way.
352. The tendency of the day school and boarding out system is found in America gradually to lead to the foundation of an institution; we are, therefore, forced to the conclusion that institutions are necessary for the teaching of the great majority of deaf and dumb children, except under favourable circumstances in the large towns. We have considered the question from the point of view of efficiency and economy, and are not disposed to recommend either system as worthy of being exclusively adopted. In both systems there are advantages and disadvantages, which we have endeavoured to set forth, but whichever system be adopted, the school authority should exercise its powers compulsorily.

Age of Entry and Duration of School Life

353. We have seen that in many of the large centres, there are many deaf and dumb children who are not sent to school, and there are no doubt many who are so neglected in the rural districts of which we have not been able to take cognizance, and we have observed that, though the deaf and dumb are not excepted from the compulsory clauses of the Education Acts, yet practically the compulsory powers have never been put into operation; the result is that deaf and dumb children have not hitherto, as a rule, gone to school as early as they ought, often not until 9 or 10, and the parents have generally withdrawn them at 13 or 14, so that many have not had more than three or four years at school.

354. All witnesses agree that the education of the deaf and dumb takes much longer time than that which an ordinary child takes to pass the same standard, and that not less than 8 years are necessary under any system to give the child a good education. Certain witnesses claim that under the manual system a child can get a larger amount of knowledge in four years than under the oral system in the same time. We have found children as young as five in the board school classes, and in some cases as young in the continental schools, but in such instances the instruction given is more in the nature of kindergarten lessons, and it is found that the systematic teaching of language cannot be profitably begun with children before seven as they are not so forward then as other children of four or five, and the preponderating weight of evidence is in favour of commencing their education at seven.

355. We think that this is the best age of entry. This would lead to their leaving school at 15. We shall discuss the question of systems of teaching later on, but on general grounds that the deaf and dumb should not be placed in a worse position than the hearing, we think that compulsory powers should be obtained to keep the deaf and dumb children eight years at school, without any existing limit of distance from school, and that power be obtained to compel the attendance of children for that purpose up to the age of sixteen, either in day-schools or institutions.


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Course of Instruction

356. The theory of school life for the deaf and dumb in this country has been to devote as much time as possible to giving the pupils a knowledge of language and general knowledge, such as is taught in the early standards in our elementary schools during the short period of three or four years during which the pupils have ordinarily been kept at school, and not to have any of the time at their disposal curtailed by learning trades.

357. The Rev. Dr. Stainer found the bigger boys under his tuition get very troublesome after a certain age. After their school hours are over, they do not care to sit down at a table, though they may be amused by drawing. He is in favour of giving them some manual employment to occupy their heads and hands, and has fitted up in one of his homes in Pentonville Road a room with every appliance, for teaching carpenter's work, carving, fretwork, etc., etc., such as benches, turning lathes, etc. At Doncaster the wood carving is excellent, and at the Old Trafford schools there is a carpentry class for boys, each of whom receives nine hours' instruction per week, and a cooking class for girls. It is also useful to teach girls domestic work, as is done at many institutions. Dr. Stainer, at his Home, has started a laundry, which is the best training for girls, as, if physically able, they can generally get situations as laundry maids rather than as ordinary domestic servants, for which they are not generally fitted, as they cannot hear bells.

358. The only addition to the ordinary curriculum of schools has been the teaching of drawing, which is generally well carried out. Drawing is a branch of study for which the deaf appear to be particularly suited, as its knowledge is essential to those occupations in which they are fitted to excel, such as artists, draughtsmen, engravers, sculptors, designers, modellers, etc. The pupils of the institutions have passed well in the Science and Art Examinations at South Kensington. From a return supplied to us by the Science and Art Department it appears that during the year 1886, out of 617 pupils who entered for the first and second grade examinations from the Exeter, Margate, Liverpool, Manchester, London (Fitzroy Square), Newcastle-on-Tyne, Birmingham, Doncaster, Edinburgh, and Glasgow schools for the deaf, 316, or more than half, were successful, and 64 obtained prizes. Comparing these figures with the cases of 581 pupils in 11 public elementary schools who entered for the same examinations in the same year, we find that the percentage of success was rather higher among the deaf than among the hearing (51 as against 47 per cent), while the percentage of prizes or "excellence" was rather lower (10 as against 17).

359. Under a recent Minute of the Science and Art Department, seven standards, corresponding to the Code standards, were laid down for instruction in drawing, and various other conditions were attached which were more or less inapplicable to the state of things in schools for the deaf.

360. Regarding one of these provisos, that girls could not earn a grant for drawing, unless reading, writing, and arithmetic (according to the standards of the Code), English, needlework and cookery were also taught to all girls in Standard IV and upwards, the Bradford School Board represented to us that inasmuch as not more than 24 girls can be taught in one cookery class at the same time, the effect of the Minute of the Science and Art Department was to make it "an utter impossibility in many large schools to make such provision." Most reluctantly, therefore, the Board found themselves compelled to resolve that drawing should not be taken up as a grant-earning subject in their girls' schools, including, of course, the girls in their deaf-mute class. This affords a strong instance of the inapplicability of the existing drawing code to deaf-mute children.

361. We are glad to observe that the Royal Commission on the Elementary Education Acts recommend (in their paragraph 117) that drawing should be made compulsory for boys, and that it should be encouraged for girls under suitable conditions. Further, they recommend that the management of technical instruction (in which they apparently include drawing) should be entrusted to the Education Department, and not to the Science and Art Department.

362. In these recommendations we generally concur. In view of the paucity of occupations (such as artistic handicrafts) in which the deaf and the hearing can compete on fairly equal terms, we are prepared to recommend strongly the adoption


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of drawing as part of the ordinary curriculum for both sexes, without being dependent, as in the case of hearing children, on the passing of any particular standard.

363. It was formerly considered that it was time enough for a boy on leaving school to begin to learn a trade and to be apprenticed, and it has been recommended that every institution should have a fund for that purpose, as is the case at some institutions.

364. But assuming that the period of instruction should be extended compulsorily from eight or ten years up to 16, it would seem most advantageous for boys to have some insight into a manual occupation, and we therefore recommend that they should, after a certain age - say 12 or 13 - be taught the use of tools and the principles of mechanics rather than any particular trade, and that girls should be taught all such household work as they may be fitted to undertake.

Course of Study and Industrial Training on the Continent and in the United States

365. In the United States, and in most of the institutions which we visited on the continent, trades are taught in deaf and dumb schools. But it is considered by several witnesses, that teaching trades can only be done effectually where trades are actually carried on.

366. In Paris, at the Institution Nationale, various workshops are attached to the institution at which the pupils after a course of instruction serve an apprenticeship in lithography, typography, wood carving, carpentry, shoemaking, and gardening.

367. At Turin, after two years schooling, the pupils at the deaf and dumb institution employ half the day, (Thursdays excepted, when 2½ hours are taken), from two to seven in the workshops, they select their trade according to the needs of their locality, in towns the pupils become printers or type setters, in the country carpenters, tailors, etc. At the Deaf and Dumb Institution for the poor of Milan, the boys are half-timers, working daily at trades from 3 to 7. Weaving, tailoring, shoemaking, and carpentry are taught. At the Deaf and Dumb Institution, Siena, drawing and wood carvIng are specially taken up in addition to the above-mentioned trades, and the girls make up the house linen. In Germany drawing is extensively taught, and at Dresden the pupils are trained for painting on china; the boys are also taught tailoring and shoemaking.

368. The institutions in America endeavour to have a course of study, practically the same as that which is pursued in the schools for the hearing. "They take up the elementary study of geography, arithmetic, history, some little study of physics and occasionally of physiology, which is deemed of importance even in the case of those who go through a limited course of teaching; and in nearly all the larger institutions in America, quite an important feature is made of instruction in art. They develop as far as possible the power of drawing, and instruction is given in the branches of painting and sculpture. Wood carving has come into great prominence in the last few years, and many institutions are establishing departments for instruction in the art, carrying it forward to a very high degree of development."

369. The institution at Illinois, which is the largest in America, has a department of art with a teacher at the head, and four or five assistants who devote themselves entirely to the instruction of the pupils of the institution in art.

370. There are some schools in America into whose curriculum industrial training does not enter; they depend entirely upon the apprenticeship of their pupils after they leave the school to mechanics with whom they may learn trades, and so be prepared to become mechanics; but that is the practice of a small number of schools comparatively; by far the greater number have a larger or smaller number of shops in which trades are taught. In the whole number of schools in the United States, only 14 have no industrial department, and eight of these 14 are day schools, so that there are only six of those institutions which would be called public institutions in America which have no industrial departments; those that have an industrial department and those that have not, are named in the American Annals.


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371. The managers of the institutions in the United States are, for the most part, decidedly in favour of teaching trades while the pupils are in school, but it must be borne in mind that the pupils remain at school till a much later age than in England. As to the amount of time given to industrial training, in some institutions, they divide the day between morning and afternoon, the boys being in the shops half the day and in the school the other half; and in other institutions the school hours are prolonged during two or three hours of the afternoon, and industrial work given later in the day; and it is stated as the result of their training, that a larger number of very competent mechanics have been turned out of the industrial departments of these institutions at ages varying between 16 and 20. One of the reasons which induce them to be very earnest in teaching these boys trades while they are in the school, is that the difficulty of apprenticing them after they leave school is very great, owing to the existence of very close trades unions, under the regulations of which the number of apprentices is limited.

Apprenticeship and Employment on leaving Institutions

372. There is not the same difficulty in finding employment for the deaf and dumb on leaving institutions as there is in the case of the blind, but in some instances they appear to have more difficulty in getting situations than hearing people. They have also to contend against the same difficulty in the labour market. as in the case of the blind, in consequence of their infirmity. A witness thinks it important that there should be an apprentice fund in every institution, and in several institutions where such funds exist, we were informed that they were found to be useful. Mr. Graham Bell is also in favour of apprenticeship funds.

373. In Huddersfield some trouble is taken by the agent of the Association for the Deaf and Dumb to find employment for them when they leave school in mills and in trades.

374. In Newcastle the deaf and dumb are chiefly employed in the engineering works and shipbuilding yards as engine fitters, boiler makers, joiners, etc., and their wages are equal to those of other workmen.

375. In Manchester the pupils on leaving school have had no difficulty in finding employment as joiners, cabinet makers, tailors, shoemakers, etc.; all the boys are taught drawing; some attend the school of art in the town. But the committee think there is a want of a permanent apprentice fund.

376. At Doncaster, the head master has given us full information as to the work of their past pupils.

377. In the London and Margate Asylum for the Deaf the society apprentices the children out of a special fund and exercises some supervision, over them. They are visited regularly once a month by their apprentice officer. At Edgbaston they have recently followed this example.

378. In the Jews' Home the committee apprentice the children, and pay premiums amounting to 20 or 30 a head; the trades that are generally chosen are sign writers, boot riveters, brass polishers, etc.; and for girls, dressmaking.

379. We have found the deaf and dumb employed in Doulton's works, and in the pottery works at Worcester.

380. We think that in the event of a Bill being brought forward empowering school or other local authorities in England to start technical or industrial schools, special facilities should be given to deaf pupils to share in this training, and where, as at Bradford, technical instruction on a large scale has been provided by voluntary effort, every encouragement should be shown to the deaf to avail themselves of it.*

Systems of Teaching - Preliminary Remarks

381. The three systems, sign and manual, pure oral, and combined, while having in common the desire to enable the deaf to earn their own livelihood, work to this end in different ways.

*The number of deaf mutes in England and Wales receiving relief from the poor rates on the 2nd September 1887 amounted, in case of those above 21 years of age, to 650 in receipt of indoor, and 486 in receipt of outdoor relief (Parliamentary Return No. 326 of 1887).


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382. The sign and manual system specially trains the deaf to communicate and associate with their fellow deaf.

383. The pure oral system specially trains the deaf to communicate and associate with the hearing and speaking world.

384. The combined system, as its name implies, tries to combine the two former, the result being that, with few exceptions, signs and the manual alphabet prevail, and cause the pupils to relinquish the use of speech, and to seek the society of deaf and dumb people.

385. We will proceed to examine the arguments which the advocates of the different systems put forward to establish their case. They may roughly be summed up in a few words. Starting upon the assumption that a written language is common to all, one party says, "We think that the sign language is the natural way in which the deaf and dumb express themselves"; the second, "We aim at making the deaf and dumb conversant with our own language, and able to express themselves in spoken language"; the third, "Why should you not give the deaf and dumb the advantage of both systems". All three have a common object in view, viz., to acquire language, the first by the manual alphabet in addition to signs, the second by speech alone, and the third by a combination of all three.

(1) The Sign and Manual System

386. It is said -

That there are some dull children whose intelligence can only be reached and enlarged through the agency of signs;

387. That it is the readiest method for the purposes of acquiring a knowledge of written language; that more general knowledge can be taught in a given time on this system than on any other, and that it is the most economical;

388. That five years are usually allowed to teach this system, though seven or eight years are required to educate a child properly, in fact, from seven or eight years old to 16;

389. That a limited vocabulary is common to all systems, even under the most favourable circumstances;

390. That in the first instance religious instruction of a definite character is difficult to convey by signs. But when a knowledge of language is acquired religious instruction can best be given to the largest number on the sign and manual system.

391. The question may be asked, does the sign language give the deaf in these respects all that speech affords to the hearing?

The experience and observation of the writer (Dr. Gallaudet), lead him to answer the question with a decided affirmative. On many occasions it has been his privilege to interpret, through signs to the deaf, addresses given in speech; he has addressed assemblages of deaf persons many times, using signs for the original expression of thought; he has seen hundreds of lectures and public debates given originally in signs; he has seen conventions of deaf mutes, in which no word was spoken, and yet all the forms of parliamentary proceeding were observed, and the most excited and earnest discussions carried on; he has seen the ordinances of religion administered, and the full services of the church carried on in signs; and all this with the assurance growing out of his own complete understanding of the language, a knowledge of which dates back to his earliest childhood, that, for all the purposes above enumerated, gestural expression is in no respect inferior, and is in many respects superior, to articulate speech as a means of communicating ideas. But the greatest value of the sign-language to the deaf, when the whole period of their lives is taken into account, is to be found in the facility it affords for free and unconstrained social intercourse. And in this, as in the matter of public addresses, nothing has been discovered that can fully take its place. It may even be asserted, that so long as the deaf remain without hearing, nothing else can give them what speech affords their more favoured brethren. They may have much pleasant intercourse with others by the employment of writing tablets; they may even enjoy conversation under many limitations with single individuals through articulation and lip-reading; with the aid of the manual alphabet they may have a still wider and more enjoyable range for the interchange of thought; but it is only by employing signs that they can gain the pleasure and profit that comes from conversation in the social circle, that they can enjoy such freedom of intercommunication as shall make it possible for them to forget they are deaf.
392. Signs may be classed as natural and artificial; the former would be those simple gestures that are common to all nations, whether civilised or uncivilised, the latter are those arbitrarily selected by the deaf and dumb in their several communities; and consequently there is no uniform code of signs even among the institutions in this country.


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393. According to Mr. Graham Bell, who has paid much attention to the subject:

There are signs and signs; and I think that it would be a matter of great importance to this Commission to classify the signs in order to have a proper and suitable classification by which we might see what class of signs are harmful and what class of signs are not. I would divide signs into four broad classes: (1) Signs of the emotions, facial expressions, and so forth; (2) Dramatic signs, signs used by orators and others to emphasise the meanings of their words; (3) Imitative signs, natural pantomime by which people imitate; and (4) Symbolic signs or conventional signs; these are generally imitative in their nature but are symbolical of something else. As an illustration of what I mean by a symbolical sign, if you attach the idea of 'good' to holding up the thumb, that is a symbolical sign; it is conventional. Or again, suppose you adopt the sign for a cap string, drawing the thumb down the cheek, for a woman; that is a conventional sign. Or if you use a shirt front with the meaning, not of a shirt front, but 'white', that is a symbolical sign.

Now, in order that you may get clearly the distinction between the third and fourth classification, natural pantomime and sign language (that is symbolical signs), I would draw your attention to an exact parallel between pictures (which correspond to pantomime) and a picture language like the Egyptian hieroglyphics (which corresponds to the sign language). In the one case you have natural signs and symbolical signs just as in the other case you have natural pictures and symbolical pictures. Natural pantomime is a great thing to interest a child in language, but it should be used as pictures are used, as mere illustrations. The proper use of signs is to illustrate language, not to take its place. It is the conventional language corresponding to hieroglyphics, to which objection is made.

394. In the pure oral system, natural signs mean those natural gestures which are readily understood by all persons, whether associated with the deaf or not.

395. In orally taught schools which are not on the pure oral system, the term is frequently extended beyond the above definition.

396. Under the sign and manual, and under the combined systems, abbreviated signs originally derived from natural actions or pantomime are included.

397. The two-handed alphabet is mostly used in England, and the one-handed in America, as well as to some extent in one institution in Liverpool, where they come in contact with Americans, and to a limited extent elsewhere in the United Kingdom. The custom of using signs leads to an inaccurate and ungrammatical use of language, and produces "deaf mutisms". This defect however may be overcome to a great extent if the manual alphabet only is used. But in translating a discourse from a preacher or speaker to the deaf and dumb, who think in the language of signs, the abstract notions have to be rendered in more simple language.

. 398. According to Dr. Symes Thompson the want of exercise of the lungs and throat is found to predispose the deaf and dumb to lung diseases. It is apt to produce chilblains, whereas the exercise of the respiratory organs tends to oxygenate the blood, and to increase the activity of the circulation.

399. We have observed how the use of signs creates a tendency to live apart as a class rather than to mix with the world, and upon the consequent intermarriage of the deaf, which in Germany and Switzerland does not occur to the same extent under the oral system.

400. The result of such isolation is that the deaf and dumb are not all competent witnesses as to which is the best system, "those who have lived in cages all their lives are so much attached to the cage that they have no desire to fly outside". The children themselves may prefer the sign system as more natural to them, and the parents of poor children are sometimes indifferent and careless.

401. In the sign and manual schools which we visited, we found that more attention was paid to the teaching of language than was formerly the case, though even where instruction was professed to be given by finger alphabet, a teacher was found giving a lesson to his class by means of signs only.

402. At Cabra there is a representative institution for boys and girls of a sign and manual school as it used to be before the oral and combined systems changed the character of the education given, and in the upper class two girls gave a version of a poem of Moore entirely by conventional signs, picturesquely and artistically carried out.

403. Mr. Bather, who was educated at Manchester on the sign and manual system, regrets that though he had remains of speech, the atmosphere of that school (during the nine years he was there) imposed on him silence, as he hardly ever spoke except during some formal lessons on pronunciation, and in reading out lessons at distant intervals. He wishes that he had been taught lip-reading in his young days, as it would have given him a power and an independence which he does not possess.


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(2) The Oral System

404. Referring to the history of the education of the deaf and dumb, as set forth in para. 319, the oral method and the pure oral system are there spoken of. Long before the introduction into this country of the pure oral system, it had been attempted from time to time, in the largest and best conducted sign and manual schools, to teach articulation to the more apt and intelligent pupils, especially to those non-congenital deaf who had some remnant of speech, and to those who, having partial hearing, were able, by the use of it, to modulate their voices, and, in some respects, to correct their articulation; and when first the German or pure oral system was being introduced, it was contended by some of those connected with such institutions that there was nothing new in it, and that it was exactly what had been practised in such institutions. The remarks in Mr. Bather's written evidence, alluded to in the last paragraph, show how little was really done; as, however, this mode of teaching articulation has been frequently styled the "oral system" or "oral teaching", it is desirable that, to avoid confusion, the term "pure oral system" should be applied to that which was introduced by Mr. Van Asch in 1859, and publicly adopted in this country in 1872 by the Association for the oral instruction of the Deaf and Dumb.

405. This system consists, not only in teaching the pupils speech and lip-reading by imitation of the movements of the mouth and of the other vocal organs, but by causing the full energy and power of the pupil to be devoted to the acquirement of the two essential points, viz., articulation and lip-reading; in fact it is not only oral teaching, i.e., "teaching to speak", but it is teaching orally, i.e., "teaching by speech"; and those who practise this method so successfully in various parts of the Continent, and the few who practise it in this country, are unanimous in the opinion that the success of this system depends entirely on the shutting out from their pupils all other modes of communication, except writing and reading, and, in the earliest stages, the natural signs as defined in para. 394 (by the advocates of the pure oral system), and these are discontinued at the earliest possible stage.

406. The effect of the introduction of this system into this country during the 16 years which have elapsed, though, perhaps not equal to the aspirations of those who were instrumental to its introduction, has been very marked; the original association in Fitzroy Square was very shortly followed by the formation of the Ealing Society as a special training college for teachers, and subsequently by the adoption of the pure oral system by the School Board for London, and by many of the provincial and Scotch school boards, by the establishment of several private schools, and by the introduction of special "oral departments" at Ramsgate (since transferred to Margate) and at Manchester.

407. We shall observe later on, when speaking of teachers, that it is to the want of good teachers that the "pure oral" system has not produced such results in England as it has on the Continent.

408. In Germany it has been tested by the practice of a century, and it has for the last 25 years extended to Italy, and to France since the meeting of the International Congress at Milan. It is thus described by an impartial opponent:-

It entirely omits the finger alphabet, and prefers to place the deaf in direct communication with the outer world by teaching at the very commencement, and with no intermediate step, oral speech itself, and, in reading from the lips, to substitute the eye for the ear. Though opposed to the use of extempore sign pictures, it uses all printed pictures freely as aids to the recollection of objects seen and illustrations of things described in language. The partially deaf, and those who have spoken before they became deaf, succeed from the beginning. Those who have a considerable amount of hearing, but not sufficient to acquire language in the ordinary way, learn rapidly, and are able to modulate their voices. An additional number, some of these totally deaf from birth, succeed to a certain extent, practically useful. The residuum, when well taught, though not speaking or lip reading well enough to mix in general conversation, are able to communicate with their friends (Dr. Fay's evidence in paper at Convention at California).
409. The success of oral teaching depends greatly on its being taught to children as early as seven years old, before the vocal organs have lost their power from disuse, and when the action of both lungs and throat can easily be extended, so as to avoid the harsh sounds which are frequently emitted by the adult or untrained deaf and dumb. The respiratory organs are used naturally, and the health of the children is improved, as many of the deaf and dumb are liable to lung disease.


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410. The only children who cannot receive instruction on the oral system are those who have such defective sight as not to be able to see sufficiently to read the lips, or such defective intelligence, that they cannot be taught.

411. When the parents have made themselves acquainted with the merits of the two systems, in many cases they of their own free will, and without any persuasion, have selected the oral system.

412. We ascertained after inquiries made at the classes of the board schools, that the parents were greatly pleased with the progress in speech made by their children.

413. It has been contended that it is practically impossible to give religious instruction orally to a large number. But though religious instruction has to be delayed for two or three years till a means of communication between teacher and child is established, yet, in the German schools we visited, after two or three years the Lord's prayer was invariably repeated, and its sense understood; we found in Italy there was no difficulty in giving religious instruction, as at Milan, in the abstract ideas of soul and spirit and the attributes of the Deity to pupils in their fourth year.

414. It is said that those taught on the oral system are obliged to learn the manual system if they want to attend the religious instruction and lectures now given to the deaf and dumb. It may be so in London; but in the Royal Institution, Milan, where the day's work is begun with prayer, the seats are placed semicircularly and special religious instruction is given twice a week to the upper classes. At the Deaf and Dumb Institution for the district of Milan religious instruction is given in chapel to 24 at a time. After they have left school, deaf mutes can go with their friends to church, and their friends can give them the explanation they require, and interpret to them the observations of the preacher by silent word of mouth. Where there is a sufficient number to form a congregation, a service specially suited to deaf mutes taught on the oral system can be conducted exactly as a service for hearing people, with the difference that the clergyman stands so that his congregation can see his mouth, and that he uses elementary language according to the class of the people whom he addresses. Whereas for a congregation on the sign system the service can only be conducted by one specially instructed in that system.

415. Success of oral teaching depends on teachers. If they are well taught, and have not more than 8 or 10 in a class, and have the patience and perseverance necessary for the work, the result will follow. It is said that such is the arduous nature of the work, and such the strain on the nervous system, that in Germany men are preferred as teachers. They attach importance to the teacher having a strong and loud voice, as the pupil feels the vibrations in the throat, and sees the muscles work, which he endeavours to copy.

It is considered necessary that the teacher should carefully study his own articulation, avoid inaudible movements of the lips, and speak distinctly and naturally with a resonant voice, and with the same force and modulation as if he had a class of hearing children before him, accompanying his articulation not with conventional signs, but with natural and appropriate movements of the arms and head, and facial expressions, which give more vigour and animation to what is said (visit to a German school described in American Annals of the Deaf, January 1889, p. 11).
416. In order that the pupil may have his sight trained, and not be at a disadvantage in lip-reading from a bearded man, the teacher is required in some cases to let his moustache and beard grow. In Italy the most successful teachers are the members of brotherhoods and sisterhoods, whose work is a labour of love, and who are generally unpaid.

. 417. At the International Congress at Milan, the following resolutions were passed, viz.:-

I. This Congress, considering the incontestable superiority of speech over signs in restoring the deaf-mute to society, and in giving him a more perfect knowledge of language, declares that the oral method ought to be preferred to that of signs for the education and instruction of the deaf and dumb.

II. This Congress, considering that the simultaneous use of speech and signs has the disadvantage of injuring speech, lip-reading, and precision of ideas, declares that the pure oral method ought to be preferred.


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418. At Milan a witness states:-

The triumph of the oral system was then proved by what was there seen in the schools, where almost impossible results were achieved, the pupils talking, gossiping, acting, etc., so that their deafness was practically non-existent.
419. The most striking result of the Milan congress was the adoption of the pure oral system by the State in France.

420. The teaching on the oral system on the continent differs slightly, but more in degree than in principle. In the elementary teaching the simplest labial sounds are connected with the vowels, and from thence the teacher proceeds to simple words. According to some teachers, the child, during the first year, is kept to certain simple sounds, without connecting those sounds with any object or word. But according to M. Magnat and some German teachers, the sounds are connected as early as possible with words representing simple objects or pictures. One of the first exercises is to teach the pupil to imitate exactly what the teacher does, and from the motion of the arms and legs he proceeds to that of the lips and tongue. Each individual child requires separate attention at first from the teacher, but it makes hardly any difference in the character of the training whether the child is entirely or partially deaf. If the child have the faintest perception of sound, he will have less difficulty in imitating sound, and learns proportionately quicker.

421. One of the greatest difficulties is to teach the children to modulate their voices so as not to become harsh. The teacher must previously be well acquainted with the organs necessary for the production of sound. It should be taught naturally, and without exaggeration, without opening the mouth too wide, and so on. It requires great tact on the part of the teacher to study the particular defects of each child. The main task is not to impart mechanical speech, but to cultivate the mind, to give speech, and with it knowledge.

422. It is not only essential that articulation should be cultivated, but also the power of lip-reading, which can only be mastered by constant practice. It is the very backbone of the German system.

Good lip-reading will only be possible in those schools where the articulation is a natural one. Where the articulation is an unnatural one, the children will not lip-read. Therefore, lip-reading is a consequence of really good teaching, and the things balance one another and help one another. If the articulation be good, the lip-reading will be fluent; if the lip-reading be fluent the command of language will be greater, because the communication will be easier. What is done in a bad school in that way in three hours is done in a good school in half an hour. From the cultivated teacher, or from the cultivated persons who surround the deaf and dumb child there will be a perennial flow of ideas to the deaf and dumb child, and that child will acquire a fluent command of language just as the hearing child who hears the same word learns it. Therefore, good lip-reading will facilitate the command of language as it is in its turn facilitated by good articulation. By the power of lip-reading the German system stands or falls.
423. The first year is devoted to the study of articulation.
In general the deaf and dumb child of about seven or eight years of age, of ordinary intelligence, completes this portion of his studies in at the most seven to eight months. In the last two months of his first year at school he learns the formation of the most elementary phrases.
Under Monsieur Magnat's system pupils acquire the power of speech simultaneously with reading and writing, "The child pronounces a word, he writes it, and he reads it."

424. The plan that Mr. Greenberger adopted is thus described at the Conference of Teachers held at New York on 25th June 1884.

Mr. Greenberger said he had practised the German method of beginning with the elements for many years before he gave it up for his present plan, which was far easier and more natural. He could teach a child to say papa in one-tenth of the time that he could give him the power of the letter p.

By using the word-method we obviate the difficulties arising from the irregularities of English spelling. In teaching the word edge, for instance, we do not call the pupil's attention to the fact that this word is composed of four letters, e d g e, and that it would be more sensible to spell it with only ej; but we present the word to him as a whole, and make him remember it as such.

425. Mr. Graham Bell goes further than this, and has successfully taught whole sentences at once.

426. The extra cost of the oral system has retarded its extension in this country, as it involves the necessity of a large number of teachers, fully one-third more than the manual system. It takes more time and is much slower at first to teach, but after a certain amount of lip-reading and language has been gained, the progress is more rapid, and grammatical language and expression are used with great precision.


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427. It has been contended that few deaf and numb are able to speak pleasantly or intelligibly; but though that may be conceded in a considerable number of cases, yet the knowledge of a little speech enables them to communicate on more equal terms with the rest of the world than the language of signs or the finger alphabet.

428. In this country there is a prejudice against the pure oral system, which, as in the case of Mr. Welsh, is often caused by want of knowledge, and dispelled by an inspection of its working; it has not been established long enough, nor provided with sufficiently trained teachers and officers, to attain the results which have been obtained in Germany and Italy, neither has it been so extensively used as to prove that those taught on the oral system lapse into the sign system after they leave school, because the large majority of adult deaf and dumb have been brought up on the sign and manual system.

(3) Combined System

429. The Combined System is not so easy to define, as the term is applied to several distinct methods.

It is thus defined by the Editor of the American Annals of the Deaf:-

1. The free use of both signs and articulation with the same pupils and by the same teachers throughout their course of instruction.

2. The general instruction of all the pupils by means of the manual method, with the special training of a part of them in articulation and lip-reading as an accomplishment.

3. The instruction of some pupils by the manual method, and others by the oral method in the same institution, and

4. Though this is rather a combined system, the employment of the manual method and the oral method in separate schools under the same general management, pupils being sent to one establishment or the other as seems best with regard to each individual case.

430. At Manchester and Margate the different systems (combined and pure oral) are carried on together in the same establishment, but in both cases it is found very difficult, if not impracticable, to effect entire separation of the two classes. At Manchester and at Margate respectively there are 151 and 207 taught on the oral system, and 50 and 45 taught on the sign and manual system, and at Margate there are 47 others who are taught on the combined system. The general system of these Institutions may thus be said to be the combined, the pupils being sent to one branch of the establishment or the other, as may seem expedient to the head master. It is suitable for institutions in a transition state.

431. We have shown that the combined system may mean a variety of things. In its simplest form it teaches speech and signs at the same time.

You teach a child a word and give him the sign for that word, and you teach him how to speak that word at the same time. He writes the word, he pronounces the word, as well as he can, and he signs the word; but practically the ultimate form of that, child's conversation is by the sign that he learned, and not by the word that he learned.
432. The result of such a combination is that the sign system crowds out the oral system, because it is so much easier.

433. Another witness speaks of this as one of the disadvantages of the combined system; if you attempt to combine the two systems, one neutralizes the other. They do not agree any more than an acid and an alkali.

434. This view is directly contradicted by Dr. Fay, who says that -

The development of the faculties and the acquisition of verbal speech by pantomime, by finger spelling, and by books, are an excellent preliminary training for teaching associated with subsequent oral speech itself.
435. In the United States there is no attempt to separate those who are taught orally in combined schools from those who are taught by the sign and manual method, and in the judgment of the authorities of these schools the association of children taught on both systems, and the permission to use the sign language out of school, greatly assist in the mental development of those children who are taught on the oral method.

436. In the United States, where there is a large majority of combined schools, speech is taught to as large a number of pupils as it is found possible to teach with success.


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437. This statement of Dr. Gallaudet is contradicted by Mr. G. Bell.

I do not recognise any combined method or system, and notice that the very institution that Dr. Gallaudet brings forward as a typical combined institution - the Pennsylvania Institution - discards the idea; this shows the vagueness with which the term is used. In answer to question 13,141, speaking of the Pennsylvania Institution, which is undoubtedly one of the finest of our institutions, and is doing real good honest work in all branches of education, oral and otherwise, he says: "the system, of which we speak in America as the 'combined system', is one which allows of the bringing together of all methods under varying conditions. For example, the Philadelphia Institution has a separate oral branch in which pupils who are found to succeed well in speech are taught on what would be termed here in England the pure oral method. This, which was started as a manual school, is now conducted under what is called the combined system." In a note which the principal of this institution sent to me occurs this statement: "The combined system has no place in our school at present".
438. Mr. Bell agrees with Dr. Gallaudet that the Philadelphia Institution is a model institution; there is no dispute as to what is done, but one terms it an institution on the combined system and the other does not.

439. The Right Honourable J. Chamberlain described to us the favourable impression produced on him by his visit in 1888 to Dr. Gallaudet's Primary School and College, the first deaf and dumb school he had ever visited.

There the teachers give all the instruction to their classes by manual alphabet or signs, and only use speech for simple sentences. The result is, that while nearly all have enough speech to ask for simple things from a stranger, their staple conversation among each other is not by speech, hence the voice is harsh and there is not much power of lip-reading. Speech is taught like a foreign language, as French is generally taught in English schools.
440. In the Convention in California, in 1886, Dr. Gallaudet carried resolutions in favour of this system, and quotes the following description of the Convention:-
The proceedings were marked by an unusual degree of harmony. The conflict of theories and methods which has occupied so much of the time and attention of previous conventions was almost wholly absent. It was unanimously agreed that, like other people, the deaf differ widely in their mental and physical conditions, and, therefore, methods of instructions differing as widely, are necessary for the highest development of the class. ... The war between the two prominent systems of instruction - the 'manual' and the 'oral' - which has been carried on so vigorously for many years, may be said to be practically ended, not through the victory of one side or the other, but through the better understanding of each other's methods and results. Discussions between men actuated only by philanthropic purposes, and upon matters in which selfish interest does not enter, lead to cordial recognition of whatever strength there may exist in each other's position, and the yielding of untenable points, until they find themselves occupying common ground. Such has been the outcome of the long controversy upon the oral versus the manual method. The method of the future is the 'combined' or 'American' method, in which the best features of both systems are incorporated. This method is outlined in papers read at the Berkeley Convention by Dr. G. O. Fay, of Hartford, and Professor A. L. E. Crouter, of Philadelphia, and covered by resolutions introduced by Dr. E. M. Gallaudet, of Washington, and adopted without a dissenting voice.
441. Mr. Graham Bell differs from Dr. Gallaudet. He thinks that the war has not ended, and points to the private oral schools as evidence of the dissatisfaction of parents with the existing system in the States, and of a wish to have more instruction in speech than is given in the combined schools.

442. In the Manchester District, the missionary to the deaf and dumb states that the adult deaf and dumb are in favour of the combined system, and that those who show an aptitude for articulation should be taught to speak as an accomplishment; but none of them had been taught on the pure oral system.

443. Where the combined system has been engrafted on the teaching of the sign and manual schools it is maintained that the pantomime and finger spelling is "the uneducated mute's best friend"; but that in addition language should be taught orally to a few as an accomplishment, and as a necessity to any system that aims to reach the highest good of the deaf. And they say that the oral method which attempts to exclude signs, and the manual alphabet, cannot reach the best results.

444. Dr. Gallaudet says that the young men of the National Deaf-Mute College at Washington who have been brought up in oral schools are in favour of a combined system; this would include oral schools for those who might unquestionably succeed well on the oral method at the same time that It would require manual schools and manual teaching for a considerable proportion who would not be able to succeed on the oral method. Mr. Foster, who was trained on the oral system four or five years, thus gives his views and experience of both the oral and finger systems:-

I was taught under the former system by Mr. Van Asch, and have found it a great blessing; by this means I am enabled to speak to my friends and to understand what they say, though not always. I have also found the finger system very advantageous for the purposes of Sabbath services, lectures, social meetings, etc., which under the other system I consider to be impossible. In short after my experiences of them both for the last six years, I consider it best that deaf mutes should have the benefit of both systems. As to the

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mode of teaching to be carried out at deaf mute schools, I do not feel competent to give any advice; but one thing is clear, that is, that the oral system should by all means be taught. I may add that if I had to choose which of the systems to be taught under, I should decidedly prefer the finger system; but I am very glad that no such necessity had arisen, for I prize the blessings of the oral system very much.
445. Dr. Gallaudet himself is a convert, and was previous to 1867 a purely manual teacher. He adopted his views as to the combined system after a visit to the oral schools on the Continent, and especially in Germany.

446. One witness, Mr. Healey, who was not born deaf, and who says that he can speak sufficiently well with the members of his own family, is in favour of a combined system in all cases where it can be adequately carried out:-

Unfortunately, in the majority of cases, because the larger number are poor, time cannot be given for both systems, and in my view it is far better to give such children the largest amount of sign and finger teaching that may be possible, rather than attempt to combine the lip-reading with it. Where there appears to be a quick apprehension and cleverness, of course the very utmost should be done, and longer time and special opportunities should be afforded, but in the average child I have found that progress on the silent system will be much more rapid and successful. I may cite one reason for this opinion, which is, that so many words have almost identical sounds, such as awl, all; soul, sole; told, tolled; glass, class; chip, ship; fan, van; bad, bat; and many others. The distinction between such words is so very nice, that to my mind the oral system must fail, or at least be very tedious, and much time must be exhausted in the attempt to teach the difference, but the sign instantly exhibits it. It seems to me, therefore, that the sign and finger language is much simpler and more suitable for beginners. Lip-reading may wisely be followed later on, particularly by those who have good vocal powers and sharp visual discrimination.
Visible Speech

447. Before dealing with a comparison of the three systems of teaching the deaf, we think they would not be complete without a mention of visible speech, which has been fully explained to us by Mr. G. Bell, who thus describes it:-

Visible speech is the name of a phonetic alphabet devised by my father (Professor A. Melville Bell) a number of years ago. It differs from all other phonetic alphabets in this respect, that the elementary characters do not represent sounds. When you examine the shapes of the letters of any other alphabet you will find that the little curves and straight lines of which the letters are composed have no significance, but in the visible speech alphabet, the curves and straight lines of which the characters are composed, denote the vocal organs that are used in uttering sounds, and they are built together into a compound form or character just as the parts of the mouth are put together in forming the sounds. The alphabet was brought forward as a universal alphabet for scientific purposes with no thought of the deaf and dumb. It inaugurated a new era in the science of phonetics comparable to the era that was inaugurated in chemistry by the adoption of chemical symbols.

However many sounds it may be possible to produce with the vocal organs, they are all produced by the adjustment of a very small number of organs. We have only one tongue, and only two lips, and he thought if he could represent the organs themselves by symbols, he would represent sound in a much more accurate way than could be done by simply giving an arbitrary character for every sound.

These characters are the elementary characters of visible speech, and you will see that they are the outlines of the organs that they represent. This is the character, that means lip, and it is the outline of the lip; this is the character that means the point of the tongue; this is the character that means the top part of the tongue, and this is the outline that means the back part of the tongue. This is an outline of what scientifically is the soft palate, but in teaching deaf mutes we call it the nose, as the effect of depressing the soft palate is to direct the breath through the nose. This is a narrow chink between the vocal chords; that means that the vocal chords are placed parallel to one another with a very fine line between them; that is the vocalising condition of the glottis. Then when we present these symbols to a deaf child this would mean back part of the tongue; this would mean top part of the tongue; this would mean point of the tongue; this would mean the lip; this would mean the nose; that would mean expulsion of air. Now there are two other characters here which do not mean organs; they mean passages. This indicates a narrow passage through which air may pass. In this case the passage is stopped up at one end and the air cannot get out. Now these may be built into compound characters or letters ad infinitum, You see a few of them here. (Dr. Bell then described the compound characters, and showed how a person using his vocal organs in the way indicated by the symbols, could enunciate not only words in the English language, but words in other languages difficult of pronunciation by an English speaking person.)

I would teach it with the ordinary symbols of writing. My idea of teaching the deaf and dumb is to carry on their general education by ordinary writing in the outset, and the use of the finger alphabet to increase the knowledge of language, and at the same time to train their mouths by the use of visible speech.

448. This system has been used for a certain number of years in America, and the teachers of schools have taken it up more or less; large numbers are still carrying it on, but it is gradually being discontinued. It appears to us that the knowledge of this phonetic alphabet would be useful to teachers who have not been properly trained in the anatomy and physiology of the vocal organs, though it cannot enter into competition with any of the systems which we have been discussing.

Comparison of the Three Systems

449. We have now gone through the three systems of teaching the deaf and dumb, the sign and manual system, the oral system, and the combined system, and have


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endeavoured, by the mouth of various witnesses, to set forth the advantages claimed for each by its advocates, and the consequent disadvantages of the competing systems.

450. Is any one of those so superior to the others that the State ought to insist that one only should be taught? Should there be two or more systems recognised side by side by the State?

451. Dr. Buxton says -

I am so thoroughly in earnest in my advocacy of the superiority of the oral system, that I should be very glad to see every other extinguished; but I know that that must be a matter of time. The oral system is incomparably the best; it is not open to question at all, because it assimilates the deaf to the class with whom they live. If I want to communicate by signs to a deaf child I have to descend to his level, but by the oral I endeavour to raise him to my level. For a time, perhaps, the combined system may struggle on; I think that is very probable; but that the sign system in itself will last I have not the slightest expectation. I think it will die out.
452. On the other hand, It has been urged upon us that the oral system should be adopted compulsorily by the State, and that the sign and manual system should only be maintained so long as to finish the education of those who have begun upon it.

453. We have already remarked on the combined system, and the extent to which it is practised in America. Mr. Graham Bell points out:-

We have these three necessities which are very obvious in the case of congenitally deaf children; lack of speech; lack of knowledge of written language; and lack of mental development which comes from intercourse with other minds. Now the three broad varieties of methods of instruction, the oral, the manual, and the sign methods, aim for one of those three things, but not for them all. A sign language teacher says, it is the mental development that is most important, and we will reach the mind any way, no matter about language; so he develops the mind through that language which it is easiest for the deaf child to learn, irrespective of written language and irrespective of speech. The oral teacher says the child does not speak; let us remedy that; and it is speech that is made the one object, and written language is secondary, mental development is secondary, and everything must go through speech. The manual teacher, on the other hand, thinks that written language is the only thing of value, and neglects speech. So that each method aims at one of these three defects instead of all of them. I think that undoubtedly there is a great deal of truth in all the points that are made by all the teachers of all the schools; I believe that for the congenitally deaf written language should form the basis, because it is clearly differential to the eyes; it is perfectly distinct and perfectly clear, and I think that it should be supplemented by the use of the manual alphabet, for we want that method, whatever it is, that will give us the readiest and quickest means of bringing English words to the eyes of the deaf, and I know of no more expeditious means than a manual alphabet. I think that every deaf child should be taught to use his vocal organs. For those little deaf children who are taught by writing and the manual alphabet, I should advocate also the teaching of speech.
454. While in this country and in America there remains so much difference of opinion as to systems of education, we do not think that it is wise for the State to lay down a hard and fast line and say that they only approve or recognise one system; more especially as some of the best schools in the country are in a transition state, and have the two systems as at Manchester, Margate, etc., carried on side by side under one management. This view is supported in Ireland by Archbishop Walsh, and in the United States by Mr. Graham Bell.

455. We do not attempt to prophesy, though many entertain the opinion, that the ultimate result will probably be as in Italy. The Abbé Tarra* had two houses, one for each system. The newcomers were placed in the house devoted to oral teaching, in which at first there was but a small number. This one soon became the fuller, and when the oral system had become universal, the sign and manual house was no longer used.

456. The pure oral system is spreading in England in various degrees of completeness in (a) school boards and (b) institutions. The school boards at Dundee, Govan (Glasgow), Greenock, Bristol, Bradford, Leicester, Nottingham, and London have recognised the advantages of articulation to the deaf and dumb, and have started classes on the pure oral system. At Leeds and Sheffield combined systems are being tried.

457. A complete list of the institutions and school board classes for the deaf will be found in the Appendix. We give a few as examples.

458. At the Liverpool Institution 84 of the pupils are taught on the oral system and 46 on the sign and manual.

*Deceased June 1889.


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459. At the Newcastle Institution 77 pupils are taught on the sign and manual system and 36 on the combined. In all of the classes the teaching power was insufficient; in consequence the results were not good.

460. At the Henderson Row Institution, Edinburgh 24 pupils are taught on the sign and manual system, 22 on the oral, and 8 on the pure oral.

461. At the Dundee Institution four pupils are taught articulation daily, and all the pupils (19) are taught on the sign and manual system.

462. At the Aberdeen Institution oral instruction is given mostly to the elder children; 4 are taught on the sign and manual system and 16 on the combined.

463. At the Bristol Institution the children, 43 in all, are taught on the manual system, and if the school board children who have been taught on the oral system are sent there, there are no means of continuing their oral instruction; one boy only lost bearing at four, but they did not keep up his knowledge of speech.

464. At the Edgbaston Institution articulation and lip-reading are taught to a few who have remnants of speech, and to those who in the opinion of the head master have aptitude for such instruction (49), for a short time each day, three hours a week, but the pupils are all classified and 101 are taught on the manual system, so that we found a boy with remains of speech, who had been in the institution six or seven weeks, treated like the other boys in his class, mainly on the sign manual system.

465. At the Llandaff Institution four pupils had remains of speech, but had but little practice to keep it up, as no teacher on the oral system was available, though the head master acknowledged the want of one. There are 23 pupils in all taught on the combined system.

466. At the Cambrian Institution (Swansea) the principal (himself a speaking deaf person) has 33 pupils taught on the combined system, and 15 on the sign and manual system.

467. At the Exeter Institution all (49) are taught orally, but with manual signs as an auxiliary.

468. At the Bath Institution there was one boy who spoke, and who had taught himself lip-reading. All the rest of the children were taught on the sign and manual system. There are 14 pupils in all.

469. At the Brighton Institution there are no oral pupils. All the pupils (84) are taught on the sign and manual system.

470. At the Clapton Institution 11 girls had remnants of speech, and speaking and reading from the lips were encouraged in the semi-mutes, who are taught on the oral system. A certain amount of oral instruction is given to all. Eleven (who are old women) are taught the sign and manual system, 7 pupils are taught the manual only, 10 the combined, and 6 the oral.

471. At the Ulster Institution there is no separation of orally taught pupils; they are taught first with signs, and then in addition receive oral instruction for one hour or one hour and a half a day. Seventy-eight are taught on the sign and manual system, and 13 on the combined.

472. At the Glasgow Institution 73 are professedly taught articulation (with manual alphabet), 48 on pure oral system. Every child is taught on the oral system at first entrance, and if they give promise of success, they are taught separately.

473. From the returns made to this Commission by the school boards in Great Britain who have established classes for the deaf, it appears that 22 children are there taught on the manual system, 48 on the combined, and 507 on the pure oral. From the returns made to the Commission by head masters of institutions it appears that the total number of pupils taught therein on the different systems, is as follows: sign and manual: 997; manual only, 7; combined, 497; oral, 364, and pure oral, 616, and special cases at Doncaster, 4. There are also about 28 pupils taught on the pure oral and 48 on the oral system in small private schools scattered throughout the country.


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474. The numbers of those taught in all educational establishments may be summed up as follows:

No. taught on manual and sign and manual systems1,026
Ditto combined545
Ditto oral and pure oral1,563
Special cases4
Total3,138

475. There are in all the sign and manual and combined schools a certain percentage of pupils who have remains of speech, or a certain amount of hearing. In the case of the latter, the use of speech tends to develop and increase the faculty of hearing.

476. We consider the teaching of speech to this class of deaf in most of the schools we have named to be unsatisfactory, and think they ought to be taught orally in a separate class, and to have their speech kept up instead of being mixed up with other pupils on the sign and manual system, in which case they rapidly lose their speech.

477. Our opinion is that if speech is to be successfully taught, all the instruction by the teacher must be by speech as in the German schools.

478. We have seen that in Holland, Germany, Austria, Italy, Switzerland, the Scandinavian countries, and France, it has been recognised by the State that all should acquire the knowledge of speech. However tempting may be the facility with which the deaf and dumb learn signs, and however difficult the acquisition of speech may be, these countries have come deliberately to this conclusion after having given the system of signs a fair trial. We have visited some of the principal schools of those countries. In France the oral system has not been long enough in operation for us to be able to judge of the results, but in the other countries they have succeeded in proportion to the ability and zeal of their teachers. It is difficult to know which most to admire, the fervent zeal of the Italian unpaid teacher, or the trained ability and perseverance of the well-paid German. The result in both countries is the successful acquisition of speech and lip-reading in a large majority of cases; their failures to speak pleasantly arose, in many instances (in Italy at least), from the pupils not having been sent early enough to school. In the United States 44.8 per cent were taught articulation in one way or another in 1888, against 31.9 in 1883.

479. It may be said that the facility of teaching a language is in proportion to the distinctness with which each letter is pronounced, to the prevalence of vowels, and to the absence of words with different meaning and spelt differently, but pronounced in the same way. For these reasons it has been stated that English is the most difficult to teach the deaf, as there is a written and a spoken language, which prevents its being read on the lips with the same facility as French, German, and Italian. These languages are proportionately easier as the words are pronounced as they are written.

480. In England the deaf are decidedly more backward in speech than those in Germany, Italy, and Switzerland, and there are only one or two schools in England which will bear comparison with the ordinary ones in Germany, but we have no doubt the same results would be obtained in England as in Germany if our teachers were equally good. We propose to develop our views later when speaking of teachers.

481. We have no doubt that with due attention it is as feasible to teach English to deaf-mutes as it is Italian or German. In the German schools we saw the pupils in the higher classes lip-read, and heard them pronounce quite intelligibly some English words and proper names which they could not have known before.

482. It is probable that this country, which is at present backward in the oral teaching, will follow the example of Italy. Abbé Tarra* relates how they proceeded from the sign and manual system step by step; the combined system was first tried, the want of teachers prevented the general teaching of speech in the school; from

*"Esquisse, etc. de I'Instruction des Sourds Muets". Par M. l'Abbé Jules Tarra, Traduction de MM. Dubranle et Dupont Paris (Delagrave), 1883.


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1859 to 1810 two-thirds of the pupils of both sexes were taught on the oral system, but more stress at that time was bid on written than on spoken language; in spite of all the efforts of masters to make speech the principal means of communication in the school, the deaf-mute continued to think and express himself in signs rather than in speech. In that transitional period sign and manual language, far from assisting speech, only weakened and paralysed it. At last the time came in 1870 when it was resolved to teach articulation only, and speech as the only means of instruction, even to the extent of subordinating written language to it. Writing was used not as a means of teaching speech but only to recall it and fix it in the memory.

483. The change of system in France, which arose from the International Congress at Milan, may be traced in the following manner. In 1749 a Monsieur Pereire, who was a private tutor to deaf children, taught his pupils to speak. In 1875 a descendant from the same family (the celebrated banker), wishing to commemorate his ancestor's work, established a school in Paris, under the direction of Monsieur Magnat, a very eminent and able teacher. Monsieur Magnat gradually associated with himself several clever men (medical men and others), and called a conference in Paris in the year 1878, at which they agreed to institute international congresses. These congresses have resulted in great benefit to deaf children abroad, and also in this country. In 1880 one of these congresses was held at Milan, which resulted in the conversion of almost every Frenchman there present, including Monsieur Frank, who was sent by his government to protest against the oral system. The French Government sent out commissions of inquiry, and came to the conclusion that the pure oral was the best system, and they have universally adopted it; they have had very little difficulty in converting the teachers, who have taught it with the greatest enthusiasm.

484. It is to the interest of the State that the afflicted classes should receive such an education as will enable them to mix as freely with their fellow men, and earn their own livelihood as readily as possible. The knowledge of written language is a great boon, but the use of articulate language and the power of lip-reading accurately are the greatest alleviation to their isolated position.

485. We do not propose to recommend a change of system in all schools to be carried out as suddenly as was done in France in 1880; but we think that deaf-mutes who are not physically or mentally unsuited for it, should be taught to speak and lip-read on the pure oral system, and that the term of instruction should, when in full operation, be not less than eight years, that is to say, up to the age of 16.

486. Much good work has been done by the sign and manual and combined schools in giving a fair general education and knowledge of written language to their pupils. We think, therefore, that, as Mr. Chamberlain suggests, such schools should be equally recognised, and receive grants under the Education Acts in proportion to the results of the inspection by the Government inspector.

487. There would be no difficulty in forming a code which would include and meet the requirements of different methods of teaching.

488. It must rest with the inspector to determine how a school should be classed, and he should take into consideration the higher and more difficult work of teaching on the oral system; but the grant must depend on the character of the work done, i.e., the amount of knowledge of language obtained, whether written or spoken, under any system.

489. We think the transition plan pursued by the London Asylum at Old Kent Road and Margate, with certain modifications, a step in the right direction, viz.:-

A. Infant department of school where all children, say from five to seven, on their first entering, are taught on the pure oral system for at least a year. Then they should be placed according to their ability into either

B. Pure oral school;

C. Sign and manual or combined school:

But the pupils under each system should be kept separate, both in school and at play, so that the orally taught children may never see those taught on the sign and manual system.

490. This system might apply equally, either to institutions or school board classes, and might be done (1) by dividing the school into two separate departments on the pure oral and sign and manual systems; or (2), by day school classes.


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401. Under either system we think complete separation between the less and more intelligent pupils should, if possible, be carried out.

492. The larger the school up to a manageable number, say 50 to 80, the easier would be the classification and the teaching of the pupils, and there should not be more than 8 or 10 in a class, under the oral, or 14 or 15 under the sign and manual system.

Higher Instruction for Deaf and Dumb

493. We have been speaking hitherto of the education of the children of parents, either of the poor class or of too moderate means to pay for the cost of the education of their deaf and dumb children in institutions, and who, after they have left school, desire to follow some industrial occupation. But at present in this country there is no recognised outlet for the higher class education of the deaf and dumb after they leave institutions. There is no educational ladder by which they can climb; no college nor scholarships available for their maintenance there.

494. The evidence of Mr. Bather shows that it was only through private tuition that he entered the Civil Service. That was before the era of competitive examinations.

495. We have therefore to profit by the experience furnished us by Dr. Gallaudet, the accomplished President of the National Deaf-mute College at Washington.

496. In the last report furnished to us the objects of the college are stated as follows:-

To make provision for thorough instruction in the essentials of a liberal education without attempting to do the work of the polytechnic schools on the one hand, or that of the university on the other. The course of higher instruction leading to collegiate degrees occupies four years, or, including an introductory year, five years, and embraces courses in (1) language, ancient and modern; (2) mathematics , (3) natural science; (4) history; (5) philosophy and political science.

Systematic physical training in the gymnasium is required throughout the course. There was 50 male and six female students.

497. Dr. Gallaudet says:
I am sure it would be of a little interest in connection with the higher education of the deaf, to know how it came about that the Government of the United States became committed to the support of such a work; for it is probably well known, even in this country, that, constitutionally, the Government of the United States would hardly be at liberty to appropriate the money of the country at large for the support of an educational institution of this sort; in fact, that question in the progress of the relations of the college with the Congress at Washington has been often raised. The institution at Washington was begun in 1857 at a primary school. One of the clauses in the Act of Incorporation gave no limit in providing for the period during which children should be received and educated, as to the time which they could be retained in the institution. They were simply to be received and retained there while they were of teachable age. That simple omission to place any limit on the course of instruction, suggested to those who had charge of the institution in its early years, that the course of instruction might be extended so as to cover the secondary or collegiate course, So in 1864, after the primary school had existed for seven years, it was suggested to the Board of Directors by the then superintendent of the institution, that the course of instruction should be extended to include collegiate training. The Board of Directors accepted the suggestion. Congress was asked to pass an additional Act authorising the institution to confer collegiate degrees. This Act was passed before the Collegiate Department was organised, and in 1864 the simple pressing forward of a few of the more capable pupils of the school into collegiate study formed the nucleus of what became later the National College. Congress made an appropriation for enlarging the grounds at that time, and later for additions to buildings, but no appropriation whatever for the maintenance of students in the college who were unable to pay their expenses. Private charity was appealed to successfully to secure annual contributions for the support of young men in the college who were unable to pay their own expenses. At a certain point, a little later, I think it was in 1866, I (if I may be allowed to speak in the first person, for I was then President of the college) received a letter from the Honourable Thaddeus Stevens, who was then the Leader of the House of Representatives, in that position on account of his being at the head of the Committee on Appropriations. saying, that in his district there was a young man who wished to come to the college at Washington, who was deaf, had never been in a school for the deaf, but had become deaf, who was poor, but very intelligent, and asking me if he could be admitted without charge. I replied that he could not, and I called upon Mr. Stevens to explain the reasons why he could not. He grew very much excited (he had previously been a friend of the institution and the means of securing appropriation for it), and asked why his constituent could not be received without charge. I replied, that there was no law for it; and in very emphatic language, which I need not repeat, he declared that there should be a law for it; and in a very few weeks he succeeded in passing through Congress a law for the admission of a certain number of young men from the states and territories on a free basis; and that formed the beginning of our authority from Congress to receive young men into the college from the states and territories, giving them board and tuition without charge when their circumstances were such as to make it impossible for them or their friends to defray the expense of paying. The Federal Government gave those annual appropriations, increasing from year to year, and sufficient to cover the increased expenses owing to the reception of these young men, the majority of whom are in circumstances which make it impossible for them to pay.

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498. We have been supplied with a map and photographs of the buildings, which stand in the middle of park-like grounds outside Washington, in view of the Capitol.

499. The charge for pay pupils is 150 dollars each per annum, though only about 5 per cent pay their expenses. In all cases their friends provide their travelling expenses, their clothing, and what may be called their incidental expenses. Those who are unable to pay have their college training, board, and lodging free.

500. In answer to the question, "Do any of these students go out into the liberal professions, law, medicine, or the Church?" he says:- "I will answer that by reading a brief paragraph. This was written three years ago":-

Forty who have gone out from the college have been engaged in teaching; three have become editors and publishers of newspapers; three others have taken positions connected with journalism; ten have entered the civil service of the Government. One of these, who had risen rapidly to a high and responsible position, lately resigned to enter upon the practice of law in patent cases in Cincinnati; one, while filling a position as instructor in a Western institution, has rendered important service to the Coast Survey as a microscopist; one has become an accomplished draughtsman in the office of a New York architect; one has for several years filled the position of a recorder's clerk in a large Western city; two have taken places in the faculty of their alma mater, and are rendering valuable returns as instructors where they were students but a short time since; some have gone into mercantile and other offices; some have undertaken business on their own account; while not a few have chosen agricultural and mechanical pursuits, in which the advantages of thorough mental training will give them a superiority over those not so well educated. Of those alluded to as having engaged in teaching, one has been the principal of a flourishing institution in Pennsylvania; another of a day school in Cincinnati, and later of the Colorado Institution; a third has had charge of the Oregon Institution, and a fourth is at the head of a day school in St. Louis.

And I would be glad to add to this enumeration a very interesting case which has come up since this publication was issued, of a young man who came to us, who was entirely deaf from birth, and had never learnt to speak. He devoted himself to chemistry, especially while he was in college, though he pursued the scientific course, and received a scientific degree. He became, after his graduation, an assayer in a prominent smelting establishment in Chicago, and soon rose to take the chief position there. He has had submitted to him on many occasions disputes between other practical chemists in Chicago, his judgment being relied on as very good; he has contributed to scientific publications several articles, some of which have been translated into German scientific publications; and now quite recently he has been called to St. Louis, where he has been appointed chief practical chemist to an immense sugar refinery. And when I say that this young man graduated from our college only four years ago, and is now only 28 years of age, I think you will agree with me that the deaf, with the higher training, may find their way into positions of practical use, and be able to stand side by side with those who have all their faculties. I should add that this young man has not the advantage of speech; he communicates entirely by writing or by the fingers. I merely speak of that to show that this practice of the oral method with the deaf is not essential to the highest success in the various pursuits which they take up. I may say that one or two of our young men have studied for the ministry, but none of our own graduates have been ordained. There have been three deaf men ordained to the ministry in America, and they are serving their own people very well in different parts of the country

Doctors they do not try to be, because from their deafness they cannot make the necessary examinations of patients. I ought to speak in this connection of a young man whose case interested me very much in the past summer. He is a farmer in Vermont. He spent two years with us. He was a young fellow of great intelligence, but not of the highest scholarship, but while he was with us he knew that he was to be a farmer, his father having a farm which he was to inherit, and so he pursued his studies with a view to making himself an intelligent and scientific farmer. I was at his house in Vermont last summer, and I heard from his neighbours that he was absolutely the best farmer in the whole district; that he made more money out of his farm than any other farmer; that it was in better condition than any other; that he knew more than any farmer in the whole neighbourhood; that he was able to read intelligently the best scientific papers that have a bearing upon farming; and that his farm was a model of excellence. That would show that the higher instruction has its uses even with deaf young men who go into farming. This young man also is one who has no power of speech. Of course instances could be added, but it goes without saying, that our graduates have little difficulty in finding their way into positions which they would be utterly unable to take had they not had the higher training that is given in the college.

501. Dr. Gallaudet quotes the poetical composition of one of his pupils as a specimen of the literary work of the college graduates.
He was educated upon the manual system. He received his college education with us. He was at the Hartford School previously. He was not a mute from birth, but became technically a deaf mute at the age of 10, though retaining the power of speech, not having heard after his childhood, and all his education was carried on in the school for the deaf.

The degrees at the college bear comparison with those given in the other colleges of America. A university degree is in advance of what we give in America, but the degree of Bachelor of Arts compares with the degrees gIven in the ordinary colleges* in America.

502. A special college for the higher education of the deaf and dumb may be necessary where the manual or combined system mainly prevails, as in America. But when the pupils are taught orally, they can take advantage to a very great extent of the ordinary college education open to all. Even though they should

*The term college means an institution which is not quite up to the standard of the universities in America, which give a full course quite equal to tho universities in England.


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be unable to attend the ordinary lectures, they would not be precluded from receiving teaching from private tutors.

503. Dr. Buxton, himself a holder of a diploma from the college at Washington, thinks that the number of those requiring higher education in this country would be very few, not sufficient to make any special provision for them.

Training Colleges

504. The want of good teachers for deaf and dumb schools has arisen from two causes:-

1. Low rate of pay in comparison with that obtained by teachers in ordinary elementary schools for hearing children.

2. Want of training colleges with Government inspection, examinations, and certificates.

505. From the time that the Association for the Oral Instruction of the Deaf and Dumb had been sufficiently long established to commence the training of teachers, and the Ealing Society for the Deaf had been started, the training colleges belonging to these societies have examined their students and granted their own special certificates. These are the only training colleges for teachers of the deaf established in this country.

506. At the training College of the Association in Fitzroy Square, the examination is divided into three parts; oral, practical, and written. The oral examination is very often carried on by Mr. Van Praagh in the presence of the committee and the secretary of the college. The only examination that is always the same is the practical examination. Students before they leave the college have to show a capability of teaching classes of children in various stages of tuition. If they fail in this, however clever they may be in theory, they do not receive their certificate. In the written examination there are written questions which are looked over by independent examiners.

507. At the training college at Ealing the examinations are conducted by two sets of examiners. Subjects relating to the history of deaf-mute education, the various systems of teaching the deaf, phonetics, practical class teaching, etc. are dealt with by the principal (Mr. Kinsey*) and two other examiners, whereas the papers on the anatomy and physiology of the vocal organs are examined by a fellow or member of the Royal College of Physicians, London, and a member of the Royal College of Surgeons, London. The full term is two years, but, there being no compulsory attendance, most of the students leave on obtaining a one year's certificate.

508. In December 1884 a circular was issued on the founding of the college at Paddington Green, which stated that -

One of the greatest drawbacks in the work of educating the deaf and dumb is admitted, on all hands, to be the want of qualified teachers. For the obtaining of the requisite qualifications there exists no suitable means of previous training, and there are no adequate tests by which they may he judged, no satisfactory guarantees that they are gained. Further, those who have by practice and study acquired such qualifications have no opportunity of gaining that recognition of status which they might obtain if they taught any other children than the deaf. We think it is highly desirable that this anomaly should be abolished, and that the teacher of the deaf should have the opportunity of submitting his qualifications to the scrutiny and judgment of an accredited body, for the purpose of examination, so that he should be in a position to receive such a certificate of competency as shall guarantee his fitness for his work. The advantages of such a measure are too obvious to need pointing out; they apply to the work itself, to the institutions in which it is carried on, to the head masters who are responsible for it, to the teachers themselves, and the profession to which they belong.
509. This college, which is not a training college, has appointed from its members an examining body which examines any teachers or intending teachers of the deaf and dumb, but with the restriction that teachers acquainted with the sign system only cannot gain the certificate. It grants certificates after the candidates have passed such examinations. It also enrols as members without examinations those who hold certificates from either of the two training colleges, and at its first meeting special diplomas were granted without examination to good practical teachers of ten years standing. There are various subjects of examination. The history of instruction, the modus operandi of teaching, with especial reference to the intuitive method, the mechanism of speech, and the anatomy and physiology of the organs of

*Since deceased.


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voice, a knowledge of making signs, ability in the manual alphabet (the latter two are optional subjects). Another subject is the practical instruction of a class.

510. Mr. Van Praagh is the head of the training college for teachers in Fitzroy Square. He states that out of the 45 he has trained, only three or four are men, because at present the profession of a teacher does not pay; consequently they do not join. He also says -

The result is that the big schools throughout the United Kingdom have no competent staff. I do not speak of principals, I speak of assistants. The great result obtained in the continental schools is really due to the amount which they pay the assistants. In some schools in Germany, in Holland, in Cologne, and in Rotterdam, for example, I know men who have been assistant teachers for 30 years; they are married men, and hold good social positions. A permanent efficient staff is what we require for our schools; and unless we have State aid to enable us to give a sufficient amount of salary to our teachers, we shall never obtain it; and therefore the results will be unsatisfactory.
511. At present those who are trained elsewhere can also be examined on the payment of three guineas.

512. We think that the colleges in Fitzroy Square and Ealing, though they have done much to further the pure oral teaching of the deaf and dumb, and to train teachers, have not up to the present time succeeded in training a sufficient number of well qualified and able teachers. The managers of both institutions assert that they have failed to enlist among their students a high class of teacher, owing to the want of sufficient pecuniary inducement, not only as regards their present but also their future career, and that this is especially the case with regard to male teachers who could only be obtained as paid assistants.

513. It is our opinion that these colleges do not at present fulfil all the conditions which should be required by the Education Department, nor can they be expected to arrive at that standard without Government assistance, examinations, and inspection, together with an enforced condition of two years' special training.

514. The examinations of the students should be conducted by the inspectors specially selected by the Education Department for the inspection of schools for the deaf, supplemented by a medical examination to show that the students are sufficiently qualified in the knowledge of the construction and use of the various organs of speech. The students before entering should have passed through an ordinary training college, or should have passed the certificate examination as teachers in public elementary schools.

515. We do not think that the Department should recognise the certificates of any self-constItuted bodies after a sufficient time shall have elapsed for the training of an adequate number of duly certificated teachers in a training college or colleges recognised by Government.

Teachers

516. The absence of State aid prevents the existing schools from giving such payments as will induce good male teachers to present themselves for training, and the female teachers are seldom such as would obtain good appointments in schools for the hearing, although many ladies take up the profession in the hope of obtaining situations as private governesses for deaf children.

517. The teaching to speak cannot be successful without a thorough knowledge of the anatomy and physiology of the vocal organs, the functions of the tongue in speech, of the lips and nose. It is necessary to know exactly what the structure of the organ of the voice is, how it is moved, how the air from the lungs passing by the vibrating chords leads to vocalisation, how the expansion of the chest is necessary, in order to get a sufficiency of air to produce a note of the voice.

518. If that knowledge be accurately learned, then a teacher will be in a position to ascertain what is the defect which any child has in its speech, why the voice is nasal, why a child lisps instead of getting a proper note; he will know that it is due to putting the tongue in the wrong place, and so forth.

519. It is therefore very necessary that the teacher should devote not less than two years to his training in order to thoroughly master those subjects.

520. This knowledge can best be acquired in a training college or colleges, such as we have mentioned, under Government supervision, and as the requirements for teachers of the deaf are even greater than for teachers in ordinary elementary


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schools, the subsidy which a training college should receive should be even higher than is at present received by other training colleges.

521. We think that every teacher should be specially trained for the teaching of the deaf not less than two years. We have found ladies in charge of deaf and dumb board school classes, who had had only a year's training, and who would have done better if they had remained in the college a longer time; in some cases where they had been trained for two years, we noticed a marked superiority in their teaching.

522. Teachers on the sign and manual system have often been trained in the institutions themselves; some are themselves deaf and dumb; even in schools where articulation is taught, one of the teachers is sometimes a speaking deaf person, as at Leeds, Melbourne, and Siena. In the latter institution, where the oral system is strictly followed, there is an assistant female teacher who is a so-called deaf mute, but who has been trained to speak and lip read.

523. We think that, except in schools where the sign and manual system is exclusively used, all teachers should be in possession of all their faculties, and have had previous experience in teaching hearing children.

524. In most parts of Germany we found that the teachers had to pass a two to five years special training as teachers of the deaf, in addition to two years previous training as students in training colleges for ordinary teachers. At Schleswig the teachers of the deaf commence at the maximum salary to which teachers of the hearing can rise.

525. In the United States, the greater support given to the institutions by the State secures a better paid class of teachers than in the United Kingdom. The teachers are often of high attainments, and graduates of colleges, and receive liberal salaries, but very few of them have been trained as teachers.

526. Mr. Graham Bell admits that the great want in the whole subject of the education of the deaf is the want of competent teachers.

It is not fine buildings and schools that we want, but it is teachers who first have a knowledge of the art of teaching, who have been trained to the teaching of ordinary children, and who have superposed upon that any special knowledge that is required in regard to the deaf. ... I would urge upon the British Government the advisability of providing that one of the requisites for State or Government aid should be a teacher who has been trained as a teacher, who has as the basis of knowledge the knowledge how to teach ordinary children.
527. He also thinks it of the utmost importance in teaching speech to the deaf, that the teacher should be thoroughly acquainted with the physiology of the throat and other vocal organs, and it is the absence of that knowledge on the part of the teacher that is the cause of the bad speech which American teachers get from their pupils.
If we encourage the teaching of speech, if we create a demand for teaching articulation, then will come the supply, and then will come the improvements in the methods.
528. A pupil who is taught the science of speech can acquire the pronunciation of a foreign tongue as perfectly as his own.
There is not in the United States any normal school, or any examining board, with reference to the qualifications of teachers before whom applicants for the positions should go and prove their capacity. In each institution it is a matter for the governing body of the institution itself to determine the qualifications of the teachers. The course pursued is usually this: To take into the institution a young person, male or female, who has a sufficient amount of education and ability to make it probable that he or she will succeed as a teacher of the deaf; and then for the principal of the institution, with the assistance of the teachers who are already experienced, to train this young teacher in the art of teaching the deaf; and in this way a body of very capable and experienced teachers has been raised up in America in the different schools. In some institutions there has been pressure to bring them down to small salaries, and that keeps out teachers of the greatest efficiency from these institutions.
State Aid

529. The Report made to Parliament by the Foreign Office on State aid in France, Germany, Italy, and the United States, shows to what extent Foreign Governments have recognised their responsibility to educate this class (Parliamentary Return, C. 4908 (1886)).

530. All the witnesses, however much they differed on other points, were unanimous that the schools for the deaf and dumb should receive from the State substantial assistance, and various suggestions have been made as to the extent of the grant, and by whom it should be administered.


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531. Mr. Van Praagh fairly stated the case as it has been submitted to us in the following terms:-

I am deputed by the members of the association which I have the honour to represent to say that they are one and all most anxious to call the attention of your Commission to the necessity of State aid for deaf children, firstly, to secure efficient tuition for all deaf children in the United Kingdom, secondly, to ensure more skilled teachers, and, if possible, to make the attendance of deaf children at schools compulsory. A capitation fee is required for every child's instruction, and sufficient grants to training colleges to enable persons of small means to have the advantage of a thorough training as teachers. I wish particularly to point out that State aid is granted in all continental countries, in America, and even in our colonies. In the majority of continental countries the State does not provide for the entire cost of the education of the deaf; it is supplemented by private benevolence. I would press upon your Commission the necessity of devising a plan whereby parents who are not actually paupers should pay for their deaf children's instruction according to their means, in fact, to the same extent as they do for their hearing children. The education of the deaf having been up to now entirely in the hands of charity, it has tended to pauperise this class. And why, after all, should not parents pay the same amount for their deaf as they do for their hearing children? School boards may do much towards establishing classes for deaf children, which in the larger towns will undoubtedly prove efficient. For example, the London School Board, under the Rev. William Stainer, can and does provide for the instruction of deaf children in the metropolis. An increase of power ought to be given to the school boards for the instruction of the deaf, the tuition of a deaf child being far more expensive than that of a hearing one. In many instances maintenance will have to be supplied as well as education. If the boards cannot have extended power to meet the education of the afflicted classes, it would, in my opinion, save immense trouble and reference to various public bodies if we could have a special Education Act for the deaf. State aid must naturally be accompanied by Government inspection, and I am most anxious to urge the necessity of payments being made according to attendance, and not by results. We must not forget that we have to deal with a class of children who are not all equally endowed with mental and physical capacities; and in paying by results, an act of the greatest injustice would be committed, as the teachers ought to receive the largest grant for the most backward child. In referring to the Report of the Conference convened by the Manchester Institution, on the 8th of January 1885, you will notice that many institutions were very reluctant, and indeed refused, to ask for State aid. Why should they have refused? No institution ought to fear, and I hope no institution does fear, inspection. I surmise that they feared the system of payment by results, interference with their management, and choice of inspectors. Will the Government secure the services of men who are thoroughly conversant with the subject, and who have sympathy with the deaf? State aid ought not to interfere with the management of the various institutions. On the continent no committees of institutions or schools are interfered with, except that they are subject to the occasional visits of inspection by the various Government and local bodies from which they receive grants. The greatest hindrance to the improvement of the instruction of the deaf is that their capacities and wants are not thoroughly understood.. State recognition would raise the status of our work, and although it might be objected that Government grants would be an extra burden upon our ratepayers, I venture to say that it would be better policy to bring up a certain class of men and women to be self-dependent members of society than to have them thrown eventually upon us as paupers. With proper tuition, a deaf mute can be made an independent member of society, and surely, as every parent specially loves his afflicted child (perhaps even more than his other children), so ought the State to provide for its afflicted children on an equal, if not on a better footing, than for its hearing subjects.

PROPOSALS FOR STATE AID

No. 1. Grants for education of deaf and dumb children on a higher scale than are given for attendance in public elementary schools.

No. 2. A grant in aid of the education and maintenance of a deaf and dumb child in an institution, or for boarding out, and the grant to come through the school authority, and not through the board of guardians.

No. 3. Grants to Training Colleges for Teachers of the Deaf and Dumb.

532. With regard to No. 1, it is contended that as the State assists the education of those who are not paupers in the ordinary elementary schools, it ought to give the same proportionate assistance to those children who require a more expensive education, as in the case of the blind children alluded to by Mr. Fitch. It is also contended that the school authority should be allowed to claim at each of the centres of special instruction an additional grant for every deaf and dumb child who has attended the class during at least half the year, the grant to bear the same proportion to the total cost of the instruction of the deaf and dumb as in the case of ordinary children, viz., not more than half (Parliamentary Paper C-4747 of 1886).

533. The Education Department can now, without legislation, make regulations and give grants; it might recommend a loan for building classrooms, or a school for deaf and dumb or blind children, and the school board could pay in respect of those children who are being taught. It could also, as in the case of infants, give a larger grant, as these deaf and dumb children require special arrangements, and can only be taught at considerable expense.


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534. We think that the school authority should receive for any deaf and dumb child attending an elementary school a grant from the Imperial Exchequer, not less than half the cost of such child, with a maximum grant of 10, and, where needful, should defray out of their own funds the rail or tram fares. (The average annual cost to the rates of the education of the deaf at 10 board schools in England and Scotland is 7 11s. 6d. per head.)

535. We think that the fees contributed by necessitous parents should not exceed those payable by them in the case of ordinary children, but that in all cases parents should contribute according to their ability.

No. 2. A grant in aid of the education and maintenance of a deaf and dumb child in an institution, or for boarding out, and the grant to come through the school authority, and not through the board of guardians.

536. With regard to No. 2, as there is a difficulty in getting school classes for deaf and dumb children in country districts, as there are generally too few in any one district to set up a class, the only solution which at present exists, not only in the case of pauper children, but in the cases where the parent is unable to pay the extra cost of sending his child to a deaf and dumb institution, is to give deaf and dumb children the right to be sent at the public expense to some institution or to be boarded out.

537. Mr. P. Cumin thinks that the objection entertained by the parents to apply for assistance from the guardians to send their children to an institution would be met if the school board or the school attendance committee were to give a certificate that A was deaf and dumb, and that the circumstances of the parent were such that he could not meet the expense, and that upon that, the child could be put on the list for an annual grant from the Department.

538. The reports of three of Her Majesty's inspectors of schools who were asked to visit the schools in London, Manchester, and South Wales, and the two inspectors who visited the Manchester and the South Wales districts, who go more fully into the subject than the inspector who reported upon the metropolitan district, agree in representing it as their opinion that it would be a very desirable and beneficial thing if the State would give 10 per head in the way of a capitation grant for deaf and dumb children from the Imperial revenues, in addition to the funds already at the command of the governing bodies of the institutions.

539. We think that the school authority should have the power, and be required, to contribute for the education and maintenance of deaf children in an institution such annual grant as would be equivalent to the contribution now allowed to be paid by the guardians.

540. Where there is no institution available for them, or where the children live too far to enable them to come by rail or tram to a day school, the school authority should provide and maintain them at a boarding school, or board them out at a convenient distance from a day school.

541. We think that the individual examination by the inspector should be a means for merely testing the general progress of the scholars, and not for the purpose of paying by individual grants.

No. 3. Grants to Training Colleges for Teachers of the Deaf and Dumb.

542. With regard to No. 3, there is no reason why grants should not be given for the training of teachers, without any fresh legislation.

543. We think that the present training colleges for the teachers of the deaf do not fulfil all the conditions which ought to be required by the Education Department, nor can they be expected to arrive at that standard without Government assistance, examinations, and inspection, all of which are enjoyed by ordinary training colleges, and with a compulsory enforcement of two years training for the students. If the Education Department shall approve of them, or of any other well qualified institutions, we think that they should be recognised as training colleges for the deaf, and that they should receive, at least an equal grant to that given to existing training colleges. This grant might be given to a special college or colleges, and should be equal to at least 75 per cent of the cost of the training of all the students, as is done in the case of the existing ordinary training colleges, but it would be essential to its proper working that it should be in connection with a school in which one or more of the systems are practised.


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Inspection

544. Government inspection would naturally follow on any grant from public funds.

545. We recommend that one or more inspectors should be selected by the Education Department, as far as possible, from those who have had previous acquaintance with the work of inspection in ordinary elementary schools, and who in addition shall become fully qualified by the knowledge of the systems of instruction practised both at home and abroad. They should also certify that the teachers are properly qualified.

546. Under whatever system, Her Majesty's Inspectors would see that the grant was earned by an examination of the schools and premises. We also think that they should have the power to require that the schools be properly furnished with all necessary appliances, and the internal arrangements requisite for the proper teaching of the pupils under the pure oral system where it is adopted, i.e., separate and well lighted classrooms, circular desks, etc.

547. They should report on the knowledge of written language, speech, and general efficiency of the schools, under whatever system, and the grant to a school should be awarded on general results rather than on the examinations passed by each individual scholar.

548. We think that the different methods or systems of teaching should be left free from the control of the inspector, so long as the result in written or spoken language be satisfactory.

549. We think that technical instruction, where given, should be under the inspector appointed by the Education Department, and not under the inspector of the Science and Art Department, as it is at present.

550. The tendency of inspection would naturally be to produce greater uniformity of teaching in the schools.

Miscellaneous Remarks

551. There are several points bearing on the education of the deaf and dumb, which have been brought before us, and which we have observed in our visits to institutions.

552. It is very important that a child who becomes deaf at whatever age after having once spoken should be sent at once to a pure oral school, to keep up the knowledge of speech, which is easily lost by want of practice. In Germany we found girls who had become deaf after they were nearly grown up, learning to read from the lips, and so keeping up their knowledge of speech.

553. Signs being easier than speech, and coming naturally to deaf and dumb children, there is always a tendency among deaf children to relapse to the use of them, if they have been allowed to use signs or the manual alphabet either in or out of school during the period of education. It is therefore necessary to watch children out of school, and to encourage them to make use of speech in ordinary daily matters, in order to develop their conversational powers.

554. The oral system, if taught at all, must be taught first, and the child can afterwards avail itself of other systems, when his education has been completed on the oral system.

555. Oral schools should be fully equipped with circular desks, looking glasses, a museum of objects, etc., to illustrate natural history, and the use of primary substances in the arts and sciences; also a set of good English pictures to illustrate various trades and occupations, instead of the foreign pictures now generally used. Separate classrooms are necessary adjuncts of the oral system.

Time of Entry

556. One of the most important aids to successful training in an oral school is the grouping of the children; this is impossible when the pupils are introduced in tho middle of a term.


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557. Mr. White thus describes his experience of the practice at Manchester:-

The junior classes are made up when the term commences and when the children have just entered. Supposing that there is a class of 10 children, those children require a considerable amount of individual training at the commencement. At first you have to teach them separately. The time then comes when you may group two or three together, and in a month's time you may out of the 10 or 12 children get as many as five classes. Then you begin to teach them in little batches. At the end of the month I found, when I went up into the schoolroom one morning, that there was a new pupil, and there had to be an extra class for that child because all the others had risen up. At the end of another month, when I went up, I found another new pupil. If I had been a young teacher, who had just commenced, it would have been enough to have discouraged me; so that I should have failed with all the others. The extra work with these new pupils filtering in during the term was enough to discourage any young teacher, and the results could not be satisfactory. That is what I am told is one of the great evils of public institutions; it certainly was so at Manchester. The head master said that if I could only manage to represent it, and to get it altered, I should be doing a service to every institution. I believe at Liverpool it is customary to do the same thing. There should be periodical admissions.
558. We recommend that pupils should, as a rule, only be admitted once a year.

Should there be mixture of sexes in the Schools?

559. The intercourse of the deaf and dumb with the speaking world is in the case of those brought up on the sign and manual system very limited, and there are great inducements to the intermarriage of the deaf and dumb who have been brought up together. In America this has been so frequent between them as to lead Mr. Graham Bell to speculate on the possibility of there being a deaf variety of the human race. We have, in our own experience, met various cases where several members of the family are deaf and dumb, the offspring of deaf parents.

560. Mr. Graham Bell states that the chief causes of such intermarriages are, (1) that the language of those taught on the sign and manual system is not the language of the country; (2) that they are brought together in large numbers in institutions; and (3) that, when they leave those institutions they cannot mix with the ordinary world, and are therefore brought together again. Besides these there are, in America and elsewhere, adult societies, either philanthropic, missionary, or social, which cause large numbers of the deaf to congregate together.

561. A witness quotes what Dr. Peet, of New York, says in favour of the sexes being trained together in schools. He says:-

Where the sexes daily see each other it accustoms them to habitual decency of thought, manners, and expression; they are under the moral influence that in families and society preserves the virtue of the young. If for this moral control, aided by constant supervision, we should substitute strict seclusion from the other sex, it is to be feared that in circumstances of temptation their fall would be inevitable. That is strong evidence in favour of both sexes being trained together at school.
562. But it does not prove that the intercourse of the deaf and dumb of both sexes when young does not frequently lead to marriage, especially when the deaf and dumb are taught on the sign and manual system; give the deaf speech, and you remove one of the causes of their isolation and their consequent intermarriage.

563. Dr. Buxton thinks that the intermarriage of the toto-congenital deaf and dumb is extremely undesirable. He has seen most painful proofs of that.

564. The mixing of the sexes in schools is advocated by Mr. Owen till they arrive at the age of 15 or 16, in this way, they would come together in the same room, or there might be, as in the old London institution, one room facing one way for girls and another room facing the other way for boys. He prefers them being in the same large school-room together, seeing one another constantly is good for them. The passions of the deaf and dumb are undoubtedly strong, but evils which are to be guarded against, if possible, are less likely to accrue if they are trained together than if they are kept apart till they are of a certain age. It seems best to others to keep the sexes apart.

565. Dr. Gallaudet says:-

After the age of 13 or 14 they are separated altogether, excepting in the classroom; they come together in the classroom; in many institutions, where there are a sufficient number to classify the boys and girls separately, they have separate classes, but there are institutions where, as a matter of preference, in the dining-room, the boys and the girls are seated together at tables; and it is claimed by those who keep up that practice, that the effect is good - that the boys are improved in manner by association with the girls, and that the girls are in no way injured by being thus associated with the boys in a sort of little family; but universally, in all matters of domestic arrangement, the dormitories, the sitting-rooms, and the playgrounds, the girls and the boys are carefully separated.

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566. The evidence of several witnesses being strongly adverse to the intermarriage of the deaf, it is our opinion that the mixture of the sexes is in all cases unadvisable, as it leads to this result, and we think that the intermarriage of the toto-congenital deaf should be strongly discouraged.

567. In order to carry out fully the views of Mr. Graham Bell, it would be desirable, where a sufficient number of pupils could be collected in one district, to have separate schools (and it is advisable that they should be at some distance apart) for boys and girls, though even that separation of the sexes would not counteract the feeling of clannishness in the classes alluded to by Dr. Gallaudet, which arises from their speaking a language different from that of the rest of the community.

568. In adult life this separation of the sexes is still more important, and we think that a grave responsibility will rest on those societies which encourage meetings where both sexes of the deaf congregate together for lectures, entertainments, or other purposes.

569. We strongly recommend that at such meetings only one sex should assemble at the same time, or that precautions should be taken to keep them separate as far as possible. The former plan, as we are informed by Dr. Armitage, has been adopted with great success in the case of the blind who meet at the educational classes of the Indigent Blind Visiting Society, resulting in a marked diminution of the number of intermarriages among them.

570. We observed the great advantages of the deaf and dumb mixing with hearing children, and without any detriment to the latter, at Donaldson's Hospital and elsewhere. Mrs. Ruth, representing the Huddersfield Association, is very much in favour of instituting classrooms in the ordinary elementary schools, where the children would have the advantage of mixing with other children during the play hours, and of following their speaking, if they learn on the oral system, so that they would be able in that way to learn to communicate with other children, which she thinks would be infinitely to their benefit. Under the present system the deaf and dumb are an isolated class, and she thinks it would be very much to their advantage to mix more with others. This view is generally supported by Mr. Graham Bell.

Gymnasia

571. Gymnasia are generally being introduced into the schools. At Manchester there is a large room well fitted up with every appliance, which is taken advantage of by the pupils. Gymnastics and free exercises, and outdoor games, are carried on to a considerable extent in the American schools. Six years ago at Washington a very well-equipped gymnasium was opened, in which physical training is carried on under the direction of a well educated and competent drill-master and instructor.

" Since that time quite a number of State institutions have followed the example set at Washington, and have erected and equipped gymnasiums more or less perfect in their appliances for physical training. It is admitted on all hands that that is extremely desirable, and those appliances for physical training will soon be introduced in these institutions generally; physical training by such means is of even greater importance to the deaf, if that were possible, than to those who are not deaf,"

Statistics

572. Most of the Institutions for the deaf in the United Kingdom and elsewhere keep registers of their pupils, in which endeavours are made to collate the statistical information (supplied on the authority of the medical men, parents or guardians, who filled up the application forms), such as the age at which deafness occurred, the existence or otherwise of deaf relatives, the amount of hearing, if any, possessed by the child, and other points regarding its physical condition, etc. There is, however, a wide divergence in the different forms, and the results are, for the most part, of little use for the purposes of general comparison. We have referred in paragraph 312 to the answers (based on these registers) to our own inquiries among the Institutions for the deaf, regarding the number of pupils that were known to be the offspring of consanguineous marriages or of deaf and dumb parents.

573. In some Institutions the statistical information is more complete. At Margate we were informed by the head master, Dr. Elliott, that there were in the school at the time of our visit (February 1889) children of six families, in all of which both parents were deaf and dumb. The total number of the children of these parents was 27, out


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of which no less than 17 were deaf and dumb. The number of children deaf from birth was 71.3 per cent of the total number in the school, and of those with acquired deafness 28.7 per cent, the vast majority of these having become deaf before four years of age. A careful examination had also been made of the hearing powers of the children in the same Institution, with the result that 30.5 per cent were found to be absolutely deaf, while those with more or less hearing formed 69.5 per cent of the aggregate. Taken collectively, the children in the school were the offspring of 274 families, 67 of which families comprised more than one deaf and dumb child; the total number of children in these 67 families was 416, but no fewer than 191 of these children were deaf and dumb.

574. At a recent conference of principals of American Institutions a uniform table for the collection of statistics was resolved upon.

575. We recommend that careful statistics be kept in all schools and institutions for the deaf, and by all school boards where the instruction of the deaf is undertaken, and that copies of these should be transmitted annually to the Education Department.

The statistics should be in strict accordance with a prescribed form which shall have been approved by Government, and they should include the following points:

Date and degree of deafness of pupil.
Cause of deafness (to be certified by a medical man, at the expense, where necessary, of the local authority).
Congenital or accidental.
Deaf parents (one or both) and grand parents.
If any collateral relations are deaf.
Relationship (if any) between parents or grand parents.
Condition of eyesight, if defective (to be certified by an oculist).
Number at school.
Number left school.
Number uneducated in district, with ages.
576. Mr. Graham Bell, who bas devoted so much attention to the question, has laid certain suggestions for the better enumeration of the defective classes before the chairman of the Census Committee of the United States. He thinks the form of inquiry should in the first instance be in the nature of a "primary schedule" applicable to all the defective classes, which should be grouped together under the head of "physical and mental condition", instead of, as formerly, under "health".

PHYSICAL AND MENTAL CONDITION

Is the person (on the day of the enumerator's visit) sick or temporarily disabled, so as to be unable to attend to ordinary business or duties? If so, what is the sickness or disability?Condition of
The sensesSpeech (of persons 5 or more years of ageThe mindThe body
SightHearingMental develop-
ment
Mental healthBodily condi-
tion
Bodily health






The "supplementary schedule", he proposes, should be prepared with the assistance of specialists, and should be directed towards ascertaining the causes of the defects and "their inheritance by offspring". In the case of the deaf, the age at which deafness occurred, and the amount of deafness are two important points to be inquired into.

577. We think that the inquiries among the deaf for the purposes of the Census should be conducted on a wider basis than heretofore, with regard to points selected, and settled beforehand, which we have already indicated in our report, they should be carefully verified by a reference to the local sanitary authority, and should be uniform for all parts of the United Kingdom.

Medical Inspection

578. There appears to us to be an absence of medical inspection in school board classes for the deaf, both on entry and at periodical intervals.


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579. The value of good eyesight to the deaf is most important, and it appears to us that sufficient care is not taken to test eyesight and to endeavour by the aid of spectacles and other means to correct or remove imperfections. We recommend that the regular inspection of schools and institutions by qualified oculists should be insisted on, both on admission and at periodical intervals, and those children with defective sight likely to be benefited by the use of spectacles should be supplied with the same. As defects in the throat and palate are also frequent among the deaf, careful medical examination of these organs should also be required.

580. We are also of opinion that the hearing powers of semi-deaf children should be tried, and remedial measures taken whenever possible under the advice of qualified aurists.

Association of Deaf and Dumb with Blind

581. In a few instances both at home and abroad we have found the deaf and dumb and the blind brought up together, for instance, at Belfast, Zurich, and other places. But in these cases the education of the blind is apt to be neglected. In some blind institutions they employ some deaf and dumb together with the blind, in order to do the portion of the work in making brushes, etc., which requires eyesight.

582. Inasmuch as the requirements of the deaf and dumb and of the blind are so entirely separate and distinct, we consider it most undesirable that the deaf and dumb and the blind should be brought together, whether for general education or for industrial training.

Blind Deaf-mutes

583. It is found that they are capable of some education, though it requires great patience and perseverance to teach them. They are taught by touch to acquire a finger language, and a boy we saw at the deaf and dumb institution at Manchester could pick out a few words in moveable type.

584. There is a remarkable case of a deaf, dumb, and blind man in the blind school at Kiel who earns enough for his support by matmaking. The case of the late Laura Bridgman, deaf, dumb, and blind, is well known, She was taught by the late Dr. Howe in the blind institution at Boston, U.S.A.

585. We consider that persons who are both deaf and blind should be taught in a school for the blind, rather than in one for the deaf.

586. Dr. Buxton describes a most extraordinary case of this kind in Brussels, where communication was made by one of the sisters taking hold of the deaf, dumb, and blind person's hands and moving them about, they having a language of signs mutually understood. That same person had not been born deaf or blind; she could speak, and delivered an oral address of congratulation to Monsignore de Haerne on the occasion. The case of Miss Poole making her will is quite unique, and is thus described by the witness:-

First of all I saw her with a view to ascertain whether she was a person competent to understand the value of money, the nature of business, and to exercise her own will with regard to her affairs. I did see her, and with me was united in the same affidavit a clergyman, whose mother, along with this lady, had been a private pupil at Mr. Braidwood's at Hackney, where Dr. Watson was assistant before the London Asylum was ever started. This lady had moved in the respectable classes of her own neighbourhood all her life, until at the age of 60 she became blind. Her over-careful friends withheld from her 7,000 which a relative had left her, representing that her condition was such that she did not know how to manage it. So we saw her, and reduced the whole of our inquiries and the answers thereto to an affidavit drawn up by a London lawyer, who was present, and this was sent up to the Court of Chancery, and through it the whole of her property was placed under her sole control. Subsequently I was informed in a letter from the solicitor in Gray's Inn, that it was very desirable that she should make her will, that he would take instructions for the purpose, and I was to go down to explain its provisions to her and to witness it. I will describe the scene. She sat at one end of the table, and at the other end were the chief official persons of the place, Ludlow in Shropshire, the mayor, the rector, the principal medical men, and other principal persons, not as experts, but in order to see that the whole thing was done above board. When she was told I was there, she rose to receive me, and a seat was provided for me on her left hand. The lady on her right was a sister of the clergyman, who joined me in the affidavit, who, therefore, had known this lady from her childhood as being her mother's friend. A copy of the will lay before the deaf blind lady and myself, and another copy was before the gentleman sitting in the seat corresponding with your lordship's. I began spelling on her hand with perfect silence one sentence. She turned to the lady on her right and spelt on both her hands the sentence that I had just repeated to her. That lady, having nothing before her, repeated aloud what presumably I had said to the blind lady, and what certainly the blind lady had said to her; and the official gentleman at the other end saw that they were actually the very words in the will before them. So it went on. She stopped

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me in one place and said, 'Not a thousand, a hundred', showing that she knew the value of numerals; and she willed away the whole of her property with perfect accuracy. She left a portion of it, and a very substantial portion of it, to the very persons who had desired to keep it from her, and they were her blood relations. She left 100 to the institution whose head-master helped her to make such a will. That was the last time that I saw her. The will was contested by the relations. When it came to be tested they said nobody in such a condition as that could make a will. We fought the battle in the Probate Court at Westminster and won. The will was proved May 3, 1861.
Organisation of Institutions

587. Should the control of the education be separated from that of housekeeping?

588. The institutions which we visited were generally well conducted, and in most instances they were administered by a committee and secretary, the head of the institution looking after the teaching and domestic arrangements.

589. At Donaldson's Hospital, Edinburgh, which includes at present a large school for hearing children as well as a smaller school for deaf children, we found that the house governor, who superintended the religious and other instruction of the hearing pupils, did not reside on the premises, which threw a great deal of responsibility on the head master of the deaf and dumb school, who had to undertake the night duties of the house governor in addition to his own special functions. In some cases we have found the head master residing at a distance from the school, and the domestic arrangements vested in resident persons.

590. We think that the principal or head master should reside in the school.

591. The system in the United States is thus described by Dr. Gallaudet:-

It is laid down as a principle that the best thing to be got in the interior organisation of such institutions is a man who is an experienced teacher, and who is capable of assuming the executive control of the entire institution. The reason for this may be briefly stated thus: that though the domestic department may be thought, on casual reflection, to be separate from the education department, yet the same individuals, the pupils, are under these two kinds of management, and very often there is friction if two heads are governing; and there are only a few institutions in our country where this arrangement exists. I should like to add, on this matter of the interior organisation of our schools, that, as a rule, the principal or superintendent who has charge of the institution is not required to teach; he is understood, with very few exceptions, to have been an experienced instructor, but is not required to devote hours each day to the teaching of a class; that is felt in the organisation of our institutions to be of very great importance, for the reason that it gives the head of the institution time to be present more or less in all the classes, and to superintend the work of those doing the actual work of teaching. In the case of two or three State institutions there have been men appointed to take charge of them who have been absolutely ignorant of the method of teaching the deaf, and they have gone on with a principal teacher under them, that principal teacher conducting the operations of the school. Such an arrangement is thought to be a very unfortunate one. It places a man at the head of the institution who cannot in any way direct the work for the carrying out of which the institution has been established; but that has been the result of political interference. We have also in the interior organisation of our institutions one arrangement that I conceive to be of very great importance, viz., that the classes are taught in separate rooms. I have found in my visits to schools in England that a number of them have several classes in a large school-room, the classes being in various parts of the room. We think that an unfortunate arrangement, and great pains are taken in our institutions to avoid it. I do not know one where that arrangement exists. It is thought that separate class rooms should be made use of for separate classes, so that the teacher of one class should not be interfered with by the operations of other classes.
Religious Instruction

592. In the institutions we have visited, simple religious instruction founded on the Bible and the Creeds is given.

593. In the Jewish school of Mr. Schöntheil, we found that the pupils were taught Hebrew, and read it; there is a small synagogue in the school.

594. Dr. Gallaudet states the practice in America with regard to religious instruction:-

There are a few institutions (I think limited to the State of New York) which are of a denominational character, which receive aid from the State. That is not the usual rule in the United States. The general rule is that religious instruction of a very simple and undenominational character shall be given, the pupils being taught the general principles of religion, and religious services - prayers and other services - being conducted by instructors who may be members of different denominations. So that it is the policy of American institutions to give religious instruction, but to give it in a careful, guarded, undenominational manner, allowing, of course, free access to the institution to religious teachers who may be desired by the parents of the pupils to be present and give instruction from time to time to the pupils.
595. There is no difficulty in giving instruction in the elements of religion and the Lord's Prayer, as soon as the pupils have mastered the construction of a single sentence; in the second or third year the pupils under any system can profit by simple religious instruction. In Germany the Lord's Prayer was taught to the pupils after two years


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at school; we hardly found the same proficiency in oral schools in England till the third year, or a little later.

596. In Gröningen, where Protestants, Catholics, and Jews are mixed together, the pupils assemble at certain times to receive religious instruction from their various pastors; and likewise in Cologne, Brühl, and other parts of Germany, separate classes for religious instruction are held, conducted, respectively, by a Protestant, a Roman Catholic, and a Jewish minister of religion.

Head Masters.

597. In this country and in Switzerland, Italy and Germany, the headmasters are appointed on their own merits, but in France, as in America, they are not infrequently political appointments, the rewards of some political services; as Dr. Gallaudet says,

The principals of these institutions are liable to being changed for political reasons; and it has happened that when the existing law of the State was such that the removal could not be made of the principal of the institution, the entire existing law has been repealed, and a new law has been enacted, to enable him to he removed. To such a pass are we come, I am sorry to say. I do not speak of it with anything but mortification. It is a most pernicious system, and the results have been painful. I have seen men put into the office of teacher who had absolutely no knowledge whatever of teaching. The only qualification of one man put at the head of a large institution was that he was a very good dentist.
Missions and Aid Societies for Adult Deaf and Dumb

598. Deaf and dumb institutions do not generally exercise much supervision over the pupils after they leave. There is some supervision at Edgbaston, and the apprentices from the Old Kent Road are looked after by a visitor.

599. At the porcelain works at Worcester a deaf and dumb man who had been brought up at Edgbaston on the sign and manual system, said that since leaving school he had never been instructed by anyone, nor had any religious service been brought within his reach. He was an accomplished painter on china, and though not highly educated in the knowledge of language, was able to read the Bible.

600. Mission work amongst the deaf and dumb is most necessary. There are missions in the following districts:-

England: London (diocesan), Winchester (diocesan), Leicester, London (Hackney), Oldham, Bradford, Liverpool, Manchester, Leeds, Derby, Nottingham, Sheffield, Stockton-on-Tees, Reading, Stoke-an-Trent, Hull, Wolverhampton, Birmingham.
Scotland: Edinburgh, Glasgow, Ayrshire, Greenock.
Ireland: Dublin, Belfast, and Cork.
Wales: Cardiff.

601. The Royal Association in aid of the Deaf and Dumb last year provided with work and apprenticed 89, and visited in their homes 3,686. Services are held in eight parts of London every Sunday on the sign and manual system.

The mission for the diocese of Winchester, founded in 1879, extends to about 318 persons. Religious services are regularly held in the chief centres of population, e.g., Portsmouth, Southampton, Guildford, and Aldershot, on Sundays and week days. The Secretary and Hon. Chaplain is the Rev. C. M. Owen. The missionary under the Bishop of the diocese (the Rev. R. A. Pearce, who is the only ordained deaf and dumb clergyman in the Church of England) devotes the whole of his time to the work, visiting the deaf and dumb at their homes, or at places of business and workshops.

602. The mission to the deaf and dumb in Glasgow extends to about 390 persons, who are visited in their own houses, and religious services and meetings are conducted in various centres.

603. The mission finds situations for those who require them after leaving school.

604. At Liverpool and Manchester there is a society for the adult deaf and dumb, which provides religious services in the large towns adjoining those two centres, and gives lectures on Saturday evenings.

605. At Aberdeen there is an adult deaf-mute improvement association, its objects are to assist and relieve the distressed, visit the sick, and procure employment for those out of work. A hall, library, and reading-room are provided. Those frequenting them have become more frugal in their habits, and a great change for the better has come over the deaf and dumb in Aberdeen, mainly attributable to this association.


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606. In Bradford a missionary conducts a sign and manual service in that town and surrounding district, also at Leeds, and has 219 adults under his supervision.

607. In Huddersfield, in rooms that the association have, there are games for the pupils' amusement. There is also a small library of books for the adults to recreate themselves with; they also meet for general social intercourse, and it is found that the more educated they are, the more they prefer rational amusements.

608. There are 25 missions and associations for the adult deaf in all in the United Kingdom respecting which we have been enabled to gain particulars. The estimated number of the deaf within the area of these societies is 12,821, and 4,096 are visited by their officers. The number of visits made in 1887 was 13,355, and the total income was 9,228.

609. These societies undoubtedly do much useful and benevolent work in imparting religious and secular instruction, visiting, assisting the deaf and dumb in obtaining work, and in giving relief, but it is our opinion that in all their meetings the sexes should be separated, on account of the inadvisability of giving opportunities for intermarriage among the deaf.

610. So long as there are adult deaf and dumb who have been educated on the silent system, it will be necessary that these societies should hold meetings where services, lectures, etc. are given to such adults in their own language.

611. We are of opinion, however, that the orally taught deaf should not be encouraged to attend such meetings, but that the clergymen of their parishes or pastors of their flocks should specially look after them; that they should attend the services and lectures of their hearing friends, any one of whom could interpret to them by silent word of mouth; and that special services and meetings for the deaf so taught are both unnecessary and undesirable, the object of the best education for the deaf being to merge them in the hearing and speaking world, and not to encourage them to form a class apart, to intermarry, and, to a great extent, to lose their self-reliance.

Literature and Press

612. Periodicals and newspapers are published on the Continent, in England, and America in the interest of the deaf and dumb for their instruction and general entertainment. We do not wish to make any comments upon the latter, except that in so far as they keep up the isolated position of the deaf we should not wish to encourage them; but so long as the deaf are congregated in institutions they doubtless will continue to be supported.

613. The following are published in the interests of the deaf in England and on the Continent:-

"Organ" (Ed. by J. Vatter, Frankfort-on-Main.)
"Blätter fur Taubstummen-bildung". (Ed. by E. Walther, Berlin.)
"Taubstummen-Courier". (Vienna.)
"Revue Internationale del'enseignement des Sourds-muets". (G. Carré, 58, Rue St. Andre des Arts, Paris.)
"Revue Bibliographique Internationale de l'éducation des Sourds-muets". (Paris.) (Discontinued; incorporated with "Revue Franfaise".)
"Revue Francaise de l'éducation des Sourds-muets". (Ed. by A. Bélanger, 16, Rue des Fosses, St. Jacques, Paris.)
"L'Abbé de l'Epée". (Bourges).
"Le Conseiller Messager des Sourds-muets et des Sourds-parlants". (Currière, par St. Laurent du Pont, Isère.)
"L'écho de la Societe d'appui fraternel".
"Tidskrift for Dofstumskolar". (Skara, Sweden). Bi-monthly.
"American Annals of the Deaf". (Ed. by E. A. Fay, Washington, D.V., U.S. of America.)
"Quarterly Review of Deaf-mute Education". (W. H. Allen and Co.), 13, Waterloo Place, S.W.

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The index to the American Annals, extending over 31 years, has been prepared at considerable expense and with great care. Dr. Gallaudet thus describes its origin and means of support.

It does not merely depend upon the subscriptions of those who wish to read it, but for a long time this method has been pursued and found successful. The institutions were asked by the standing executive committee to contribute in proportion to the number of their respective pupils to the support of this periodical, and an assessment has been made by the committee, of certain sums upon the different institutions which in general has been accepted; of course, their assessments were voluntary, but they were so generally accepted that it has been possible to publish the 'Annals' on a liberal scale, to pay an editor to take charge of it, and to pay for articles contributed, which has stimulated teachers and others to write for the 'Annals' in a way which has made the periodical of increasing value. The assessments have been paid out of the several funds of the various schools of the country by vote of their respective boards of direction, and the money disbursed under direction of standing committees and accounted for to the convention as they have met from time to time.
614. Dr. Gallaudet has been able, by the assistance and courtesy of the New York Institution for the Deaf, and by the co- operation of Dr. Isaac Lewis Peet (who is at the head of it, and who succeeded his father, who was for many years at the head of the institution), to present in the name of the New York Institution, and of the Institution of Washington, to the Commission a complete set of the "Annals", which he had brought with him as a matter of reference.

615. These "Annals" relate to the education of the deaf not only in America, but all over the world, and are a mine of information on the subject of the deaf and dumb.

616. They consist of 31 volumes, and were accepted by the Commission from these two institutions in America with very great pleasure. They have served as a library for the Commission to consult for themselves, and have been of great use.

Conferences

617. Besides the international congresses held to consider the education of the deaf in various parts of the Continent, conferences have been held of head masters in London in 1877, 1881, and 1885, of governing bodies in London in 1881, of principals at Doncaster in 1882, and on State aid at Manchester in 1885. In addition to these there was a conference on oral instruction at the International Health Exhibition in 1884. Conventions are also held in the United States, France, Germany, and Sweden. All these meetings have increased the general knowledge of the working of the pure oral system, and have led to useful interchange of opinion between the teachers and managers of deaf and dumb institutions, and others interested in the education of the deaf.

618. Mr. G. Bell adds:-

In regard to suggestions for improving our methods of instruction, I think that the British Government should assist the bringing together of teachers for the purpose of discussing the methods of instruction. I cannot over estimate the benefit to America which has resulted from the periodical conventions of teachers which are held, where the most free discussions take place, teachers of the most opposite methods urge their views, and nothing but good comes from these teachers' conventions.
619. In America the conferences take place every four years.
They have two bodies of instructors of the deaf meeting in America, one termed the conference of principals, which meets every four years, and the other the convention of instructors, including principals, which also meets every four years. Those meetings alternate with each other, so that we have a meeting every two years, one year the conference of principals and the other the convention of instructors; and those meetings have been continued since 1851, with an interregnum during the time of our civil war, when, for a few years, they were suspended.
Copies of the proceedings of different conventions and conferences have been laid before the Commission by Dr. Gallaudet, in which there is a large amount of material of great value bearing upon the work of instructing the deaf in America. He speaks favourably of these conferences, and of the importance with which they are regarded in their work in America.
They bring teachers together. For instance, at this last convention in California, half of the time of the convention was taken up in normal sections; teachers of known capacity and experience were selected to take charge of certain subjects of instruction, and to hold meetings of such teachers as were interested in those particular branches of instruction. They interchanged methods and means of instructing from one teacher to another, and so a normal school was carried on for a certain period that was productive of great benefit. And to these conventions the principals of the institutions are generally sent by the governing boards of the institutions and their travelling expenses paid; and in some instances teachers are sent, and their travelling expenses paid. The conventions themselves and the conferences are usually held in some insti-

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tution during the vacation, and the institution which invites them entertains the members of the convention during its period. For example, the California Institution, by a vote of the Legislature, expended about 3,000 dollars in entertaining this convention which was held last July, during a little over a week.
Summary of Recommendations*

620. We recommend:-

1. That the provisions of the Education Acts be extended to the deaf and dumb, and power be obtained to enforce the compulsory attendance of children at a day school or institution up to the age of 16. (355)

2. That where the number under any school authority is too small to form a class, or where the child is unable to attend an elementary school, the school authority should have the power and be required either to send a child to an institution, or to board out such child under proper inspection, and to contribute to his education and maintenance such annual grants as would be equivalent to the contribution now allowed to be paid by Boards of Guardians; and if there should be neither institution nor school available or willing to receive such child, the school authority should have the power, either by itself or in combination with other school authorities, to establish a school or institution for the purpose, and to educate such children under proper inspection. (352)

3. That independently of the position of the parent a capitation grant not less than half the cost of the education of such child with a maximum grant of 10, should be given for all in the same way as in ordinary elementary schools, and that the fees payable by necessitous parents should not exceed those payable in the case of ordinary children, but that in all cases parents should contribute according to their ability. (534)

4. That the age of entry should, as far as possible, be seven; that pupils should, as a rule, be admitted only once a year, that the school attendance should be compulsorily enforced for at least eight years, without any existing limit of distance from school, and that power should be given to the local authority to pay the rail or tram fare of children when necessary. (355)

5. That on admission the cause of deafness should be stated in the school register on the certificate of a medical practitioner. (347)

6. That in all schools and institutions the general health, hearing, and sight of deaf children should be periodically inspected by a medical practitioner, and that those possessing some hearing capacity should be carefully and frequently examined, so as to test and improve their hearing, pronunciation, and intonation, by mechanical means such as ear trumpets, etc. (346, 579, 580)

7. That technical instruction in industrial handicrafts should be under the Education Department as part of the curriculum in schools for the deaf and dumb after the age of 12 or 13, and that this training be continued to 16. After 16 it may be left to institutions to apprentice their pupils or to send them to the technical or industrial schools provided for ordinary children. (364, 380)

8. That a special code for the deaf and dumb be issued, and that drawing, woodcarving, or modelling, be made part of the regular curriculum of instruction for both sexes. (362)

9. That every child who is deaf should have full opportunity of being educated on the pure oral system. In all schools which receive Government grants, whether conducted on the oral, sign and manual, or combined system, all children should be, for the first year at least, instructed on the oral system, and after the first year they should be taught to speak and lip read on the pure oral system, unless they are physically or mentally disqualified, in which case, with the consent of the parents, they should be either removed from the oral department of the school or taught elsewhere on the sign and manual system in schools recognised by the Education Department. The parent shall, as far as practicable, have the liberty of selecting the school to which his child should be sent. (489)

10. That children who have partial hearing or remains of speech should in all cases be educated on the pure oral system. The children should in all schools be classified according to their ability. (475, 476, 552)

11. [It must be understood that our suggestions are not intended to be applicable to all children now under instruction, and that the recommendations indicated will, by their very nature, have to be carried out according as circumstances permit.]

*The numbers in brackets refer to the paragraphs in the body of the Report where the recommendations occur and where the arguments are fully stated. The two should be read in conjunction with one another.


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12. That there should be teachers in the proportion of one to 8 or 10 pupils in pure oral schools, and of one to 14 or 15 in sign and manual schools. (492)

13. That in institutions the principal or head master should reside in the school. (590)

14. That the inspectors should be selected by the Education Department as far as possible from those who have had previous acquaintance with the work of inspection in ordinary elementary schools, and who in addition shall have become fully qualified by the knowledge of the systems of instruction practised both at home and abroad. They should also certify that the teachers are properly qualified. (545)

15. That they should see that the schools are properly furnished with all the appliances necessary, and the internal arrangements requisite for the proper teaching of the pupils under the pure oral system where it is adopted. (546)

16. That they should report on the knowledge of written language, speech, and the general efficiency of the schools, under whatever system. (547)

17. That the individual examination by the inspector should be a means for merely testing the general progress of the scholars, and not for the purpose of paying individual grants, and that the grants should be proportionate to the higher cost of educating the deaf on any system. (547)

18. That the different methods or systems of teaching should be left free from the control of the inspector so long as the result in written or spoken language is satisfactory. (548)

19. We think that the present training colleges for the teachers of the deaf do not now fulfil all the conditions which ought to be required by the Education Department, nor can they be expected to arrive at that standard without Government assistance, examination, and inspection, all of which are enjoyed by ordinary training colleges, and with compulsory enforcement of two years training for the students. (543)

We recommend -

20. That if the Education Department should approve of them or of any other well qualified institution, they should be recognised as training colleges for teachers of the deaf, and should receive a grant at least equal to that given to ordinary training colleges, and that the examination of the students in training colleges for teachers of the deaf should be carried out by the inspectors specially selected by the Education Department for the inspection of schools for the deaf, supplemented by an examination in the physiology of the various organs of speech, conducted by a duly qualified medical examiner. (543)

21. That, except in schools where the sign and manual system is exclusively used, all teachers should be in possession of all their faculties and have had previous experience in teaching hearing children. (523)

22. That trained teachers of the deaf should, as in Germany, receive salaries such as would induce teachers of special attainments to enter the profession, and on a higher scale than those enjoyed by trained teachers of ordinary children.

23. That after sufficient time shall have elapsed to give full effect to the recommendations above given. the Education Department should enforce such regulations with regard to certificated teachers for the deaf as may be in force in ordinary public elementary schools, and that the certificates of any self-constituted bodies shall not then be recognised. (515)

24. That there should be one uniform schedule of inquiry of the deaf for the census returns of the whole of the United Kingdom. The inquiries should be made on a wider basis than heretofore with reference to points selected and settled beforehand, which we have already indicated in our report. They should be carefully verified by a reference to the local sanitary authority, and should be made uniform for all parts of the United Kingdom. There should be one Government form of statistics to be kept in every school or institution for the deaf, which should be shown to the inspector, and a copy of which should be annually sent to the Education Department. (577)

25. That the class should be spoken of as the deaf: the terms "deaf-mute" and "deaf and dumb" should be strictly applied to such only as are totally deaf and completely dumb. (318)

26. That the deaf and dumb should be kept as far as possible from being a class apart. We think that the mixture of the sexes in school and especially in after life is, in all cases, unadvisable. We also think that the intermarriage of the congenital deaf should be strongly discouraged, as well as the intermarriage of blood relations, especially where any hereditary tendency to deaf-mutism prevails in the family. (566, 307, 314)

27. That the children who are deaf, dumb, and blind should be taught in a school for the blind rather than in one for the deaf. (585)


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IDIOTS AND IMBECILES

621. We now approach a class which comes under our terms of reference as requiring from special circumstances exceptional methods of education, and which are practically excluded from tho operation of the Education Acts - as much and perhaps even more than the classes we have previously been considering.

622. Our inquiries regarding the imbeciles and idiots have been directed towards ascertaining how many of them are capable of education and are able to benefit by training, and if so, whether it can best be carried out in some special institution distinct from an ordinary lunatic asylum.

Total Number

623. Their number is open to some doubt. It is very difficult to obtain any accurate statistics of idiots and imbeciles, and this the Census Commissioners for England and Wales have themselves very greatly deplored. An inquiry was made in the year 1871 in the neighbourhood of Lancaster by the clerk to the union, who superintended the enumeration there: he was a member of the central committee of the Royal Albert Asylum, and being much interested in the asylum he gave special instructions to the enumerators. On going over their papers at the close of the enumeration he found that at least 25 per cent of the cases in the neighbourhood of which he knew personally had not been put down at all. The Census Commissioners state that, having grave doubts with regard to the accuracy of the returns made to them at the last census, they inquired at one large institution as to the number of idiots and imbeciles admitted into that institution in the year of the census, and they found that not one-half of the patients admitted into that institution had been enumerated. The Census Commissioners take it that between the ages of 15 and 20 there is less probability of concealment than in the earlier ages, and that is very likely to be true, because, with regard to children under five years of age, it is not at all likely that parents would confess that their children were imbecile, and therefore they will not return them as such. And between the ages of 5 and 15 the parents will not readily admit that their children are even weak-minded. There is the utmost difficulty in convincing the parents, on their application for the admission of their children into an institution, that they are not very superior to other children, while the contrary is the case. In the census in 1881 the number given is 32,717. Of these, 8,782 were between 5 and 20 years, 9,233 were under 20 years of age, and the Commissioners just double the latter number to get an approximate estimate; they give 18,456, or only 10 less than the duplication. In the case of those of 20 years of age or upwards the census returns gives 23,484, and the Commissioners adopt those figures.

624. Mr. Diggens assumes that the actual census will give the percentage of persons under 20 years of age as about 28 per cent of the whole number, and the Commissioners' estimate is 44 per cent of the whole number of idiots and imbeciles. If any importance can be attached to the Census Commissioners' Report we are almost bound to take their larger number.

625, The Special Committee of the Charity Organization Society on the education and care of idiots, imbeciles, and harmless lunatics, which sat in 1876 and 1877 (previously to the last census) estimated the total number of these classes to be about 25 per cent in excess of the census figures, which would bring it up to 49,041. Assuming that two-thirds of these, or 32,694, would be chargeable to the poor rate, and that of the remainder, probably one-fifth, or 3,269, belong to the classes just above paupers but needing to be benefited by public administration, the above-named Committee considered that the total number of cases to be provided for was 32,694 + 3,269, or 35,963.

State of the Law

626. When the census of 1881 was taken, imbeciles and idiots were classed under the head of lunatics. The Lunacy Acts define a lunatic as "a lunatic, an idiot, or a person of unsound mind".

627. By the "Idiots Act 1886", some alteration was made in the law, but it only amounts to this that the Act alters the rules for the detention of such persons; it simplifies their admission into asylums, and in the opinion of the late Secretary to the


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Commissioners in Lunacy, it practically does little more. There is this definition in section 17 of that Act, "In this Act if not inconsistent with the context, 'idiots' or 'imbeciles' do not include 'lunatics', and 'lunatic' does not mean or include idiot or imbecile."

628. The Secretary of the Royal Albert Asylum, however, considers that the Idiots Act of 1886 has had a very beneficial effect in facilitating the sending of children to the Royal Albert Asylum. The parents, especially those who have feeble-minded children, strongly object to have their children stigmatised as idiots under the Lunacy Acts.

629. Previously to that Act certificates had to be signed under the Lunacy Acts. There were two medical certificates required and a statement from the parent, which in some cases was absurd; it required the date of the last attack, whether the patient was dangerous, and whether he had suicidal tendencies, in the same manner and in the same forms as are now required for dangerous lunatics. That shocked the parents when they wanted to make application for the admission of their children. The effect of the Idiots Act has been to facilitate the admission of children into institutions, and especially the admission of the higher grade of imbeciles, those whose friends would strongly oppose the idea of their being deemed to be idiots or lunatics. Parents of that class formerly came to the Royal Albert Asylum, and, after an inspection of the institution, would have sent their children there but for the fact of having to sign the forms of admission.

630. The authorities of the Earlswood Asylum bear similar testimony as to the beneficial effect of the Idiots Act:-

This legislation has emancipated the imbecile asylums and the inmates from the totally unsuitable provisions and restrictions of the Lunacy Acts. A feeble-minded child can now be admitted into an institution to receive the benefits of its educational and industrial training upon a simple medical certificate that it is "imbecile" and "capable of receiving benefit from admission into an asylum".
631. The 25th and 26th Victoria, chapter 43, which is "An Act to provide for the education and maintenance of pauper children in certain schools and institutions", empowers the guardians to send any pauper child to any school certified by the Local Government Board and supported wholly or partially by voluntary subscriptions, and the word school is defined by section 10 "to extend to any institution established for the instruction of blind, deaf, dumb, lame, deformed, or idiotic persons". This is extended by a subsequent Act, the 31st and 32nd Victoria, chapter 122, which is entitled "An Act to make further amendments in the laws for the relief of the poor in England and Wales", the 13th section of which provides that the guardians may, with the consent of the Local Government Board, send idiotic paupers to an asylum or establishment for the reception of idiots maintained at the charge of the county rate or by public subscription, and they may with the like consent send any idiotic, imbecile, or insane pauper who may be lawfully detained in a workhouse to the workhouse of any other union and pay the cost of the maintenance of such person in such asylum, establishment, or workhouse. The asylums or establishments or workhouses to which such persons may be sent are not necessarily to be certified by the Local Government Board.

632. The asylums or establishments for the reception and education of idiots, whether certified by the Local Government Board or not, but registered or licensed under the Lunacy Acts for the reception of idiots and imbeciles, are inspected by the Lunacy Commissioners, and they visit all workhouses where persons of unsound mind are detained.

633. But that inspection by the Lunacy Commissioners does not extend to a supervision of the education given in those institutions. Nor is it their duty to superintend the education of imbeciles and idiots. That duty has not been thrown by law upon any particular body.

634. There is no Government inspection of the education of educable imbeciles, nor general superintendence of the training and education of these classes.

635. Mr. Perceval was unable to state the proportion of the class who might be considered chargeable to the poor rates. He added that it might possibly be got from the Local Government Board, but it could not be obtained from the office of the Commissioners in Lunacy, as they have only returns of those who are in county asylums, lunatic hospitals, or licensed houses, and this is a very small proportion of


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the whole. There is a great difficulty in separating the real pauper class from the class immediately above it, as in the other classes with which we have already dealt. There are now five public establishments open which receive idiot paupers: viz., the Royal Albert Asylum, at Lancaster, the Western Counties Idiot Asylum, at Starcross, near Exeter, asylums at Colchester and Northampton, and the Darenth Asylum. The last is in a unique position, because it is the only institution in England and Wales supported wholly out of the rates, to which idiot pauper children can by law be sent.

636. There is at present considerable doubt whether there is legal power to establish such institutions elsewhere. A special Act was apparently required to be passed in the case of the Darenth institution.

637. That principle has not been extended to the rest of England, though at the Warwick County Lunatic Asylum a separate building was provided for idiots in 1870, under the provisions of the Lunatic Asylums Act of 1853 (16 & 17 Vict. c. 97); not by the guardians, nor by any district board like the Metropolitan Asylums Board, but by the visitors. Very little is being done, however, in regard to those idiots at Warwick at present. A similar experiment has been initiated at Northampton. The visitors of the county asylum there have lately built a block for idiots and imbeciles as a portion of their asylum under the provisions of the same Act.

638. But it has been doubted whether the Act of 1853 will permit two committees of separate counties, or of a county and a borough, to unite for the purpose of providing an asylum which shall not be a general asylum for all persons of unsound mind, but merely for one category of them - viz., idiots.

639. It is most desirable that boards of guardians should have the power to send idiots to such separate institutions.* There are a number of idiots in the lunatic wards of lunatic asylums who are most unfortunately placed there, and accommodation is much wanted for idiots, whether educable or non-educable.

640. Sir Arthur Mitchell's evidence is much to the same effect:-

It certainly deserves consideration whether teaching and training would not be more efficient in institutions which did not act as nursing hospitals for helpless, degraded, and wholly ineducable idiots, and which did act solely as specially organised and specially equipped schools for the education and training of educable imbeciles. My opinion is that such a separation as is here indicated would increase the efficiency of the teaching and training in institutions acting as schools.

641. This question has not been altogether overlooked by the Lunacy Commissioners, for in the Government Bill for the Amendment of the Lunacy Acts, which has been introduced in three successive sessions, a clause was inserted expressly enabling unions to be made between counties, or counties and boroughs, to provide idiot asylums.

642. We do not see any objection to the extension of institutions for that purpose under the committee of visitors of county asylums under the county councils rather than under a central board in London.

*NOTE - The Institutions for the reception of imbeciles are the following:-

Hospitals Registered under The Idiots Act 1886

EssexEastern Counties Asylum for Idiots, ColchesterE. Williams, Supt.; C. Caldecott, M.B., Resident Medical Officer.
LancasterRoyal Albert Asylum for Idiots, LancasterG. E. Shuttleworth, M.R.C.S.
SurreyAsylum for Idiots, Earlswood, RedhillR. Jones, M.D.

Houses Registered under The Idiots Act 1886

DevonThe Western Counties Idiot Asylum, StarcrossW. Locke.
SomersetDownside Lodge, Chilcompton, BathMiss J. C. Page.
WarwickMidland Counties Idiot Asylum, Knowle, BirminghamJ. H. Kimbell, F.R.C.S., and Miss Stock.
Hampton WickNormansfieldJ. L. H. Down, M.D., and Mrs. Down.


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643. The Commissioners in Lunacy, in visiting lunatic asylums and workhouses, find children confined in those institutions, and make comments upon them in their reports; and they sometimes recommend that those children be sent to idiot establishments. Inquiries are made by the magistrates and guardians for a suitable establishment, but at present the idiot asylums outside the Metropolitan district being so few, the recommendations often fall to the ground from considerations of distance.

644. The Commissioners in Lunacy have also no means of knowing the number of children who ought to be in an institution for idiots or imbeciles, but who are now either not in any institution, or in a workhouse where they receive no instruction.

645. In the opinion of the Secretary, the late Mr. Perceval, the care and treatment of the children ought certainly to be under the Commissioners in Lunacy, but he thought the duty of inspection of any educational system could not be undertaken with the then existing staff.

Character of the Class of Imbeciles

646. Though the three classes of blind, deaf and dumb, and idiots differ entirely among each other, both as regards their character and educability, yet there are among the idiot class many deaf and dumb, and partially or completely blind.

647. Mr. Graham Bell has shown in his elaborate pedigrees that as a certain percentage of idiots are blind and deaf and dumb, and there is some intimate correlation between the three classes, there not infrequently is an idiot in the families where there are deaf and dumb or blind offspring.

648. Mr. Graham Bell also states that the number of idiots among the deaf and dumb shows that the feeble-minded must be very much more common among the deaf and dumb than among the hearing.

649. At the Lancaster, Royal Albert Asylum, Dr. Shuttleworth says, "if, under the term 'dumb' all are included who cannot make articulate sounds, or only make a few articulate sounds, there are about 25 per cent who are dumb in that sense of the term."

650. There are among the imbeciles a great many whose sight is affected, especially among those who suffer from scrofulous affections; in other cases some other disease may have destroyed the sight. The defects of vision among idiots are frequent. Many of them are short-sighted, and opacity of the eyes is frequent. Dr. Shuttleworth thinks that in some way this deficiency of sight may arise from want of brain power or deficient development of the optic nerve.

651. There is no clear line separating idiots and imbeciles, it is merely a difference of degree not of kind. Idiocy means a greater deficiency of intellect, and imbecility means a lesser degree of such deficiency. Sir A. Mitchell states that:-

Mental unsoundness or mental defect, which dates from intra-uterine life or from an early period of extra-uterine life - that is, from infancy or childhood - is called idiocy or imbecility. The causes of the condition differ greatly, both when its origin is in festal life and when it dates from childhood. It is not of necessity a condition which is congenital, but it always begins in an immature or undeveloped organ. It does not represent the loss of something which had existed, but a hindrance to that something's coming into existence. This is broadly correct, though not absolutely so, because there is in some cases a certain amount of loss. This feature of the condition gives it certain characters, which are sufficiently distinctive to make a group, or a class, of those in whom it appears. ... According to the gravity of the condition, that is, the extent of the mental unsoundness or defect, the individuals showing it are called idiots or are called imbeciles. In other words idiocy is a deeper mental defect than imbecility. This view meets all requirements, whether for scientific purposes, or for purposes of medical treatment, or for practical purposes connected with care, management, and education.
652. Out of this class of children of weak mind either from birth or from an early age there are a certain number (and it is impossible to lay down definitely what number) who require special educational arrangements to develop such faculties as they have, and with this class we have to deal. We found that at the Royal Albert Asylum special attention had been paid to the requirements of this class, and Dr. Shuttleworth and Mr. Diggens gave most valuable evidence on the work of that institution.

653. The education of this class includes not only what we are accustomed to regard as subjects of ordinary school education, that is instruction in the elements of reading, writing, and arithmetic, but, also a good deal that in the case of weak-minded children is a necessary and essential preliminary to that sort of instruction.

These children are not only dull in mind, but they labour under certain physical infirmities; they have dullness of their senses, and they have irregular movements of the body, and to sharpen the senses and to


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overcome those irregularities of movement is of course preliminary to their settling down to any ordinary school routine; so that the education of imbeciles involves in the first place the training of their senses and of their muscles to a much greater extent than in the case of an ordinary school child. Then again the successful training of imbeciles involves more than simply literary school education, such as reading, writing, and arithmetic, inasmuch as their successful training involves some skill in industrial work; therefore the school work passes on almost imperceptibly into industrial training. ... There are of course other matters, which would be matters of nursing perhaps rather than matters of education, such as the improvement of their habits.
Congenital and Non-Congenital Cases

654. In the experience of Dr. Shuttleworth the congenital preponderates very much over the non-congenital class, in the proportion of 65 per cent of the congenital class to 35 per cent of the non-congenital class.

In the books at the Royal Albert Asylum, which now contain over 1,100 cases, exist accurate histories of nearly 1,000 of those cases; and with regard to the degree of improvement possible, their experience is that the congenital class are more susceptible to improvement than the non-congenital class, speaking generally; the reason of that probably being that the non-congenital class suffer from the effects of damage to the brain and brain disease, whereas the congenital class, of course, are deficient from want of development of' the brain before birth, and by placing them in favourable conditions and subjecting them to proper educational processes, they may be improved in process of growth."
Causes of Idiocy

655. The causes are various. According to Dr. Shuttleworth -

The most frequent cause of idiocy is, no doubt, ill-assorted marriages, marriages of persons of the same morbid tendencies. A tendency to consumption furnishes the largest number of cases according to our statistics. ...

Not more than 5.6 per cent of cases are recorded at Lancaster, in which there have been marriages of consanguinity.

656. The view that consanguineous marriages have but little to do with producing idiocy is shared by the superintendent of the Starcross Asylum.

657. Intemperance is another cause; according to the experience of the witness not so preponderating a cause as other authorities have stated. In 14 per cent of the Lancaster cases there is some evidence of intemperance. It is a very difficult matter to arrive at a true statement with regard to that; the witness has taken some pains not merely to accept the statements of the friends, but to make inquiries from people who know the parents. When admitting a case the question is asked, whether there was any intemperance on the part of the parents previous to the child's birth. The answer generally is, certainly not; afterwards (from other sources, perhaps) it is found that the father is a notorious drunkard; but still 14 per cent is much less than has been calculated by some American and other authorities.

The percentage of cases where idiocy or imbecility has been found to be due to epilepsy in the parents is not nearly so large as the percentage of cases where it has been found to be due to the marriage of consumptive or scrofulous subjects; 24 per cent of our children have a decided family history of phthisis; other observers have made the percentage much larger than that.

There are not many imbeciles who have outward signs of hereditary syphilis; under 1 per cent, I believe, but altogether there is a suspicion of hereditary taint of syphilis in 15 cases out of the 1,000 of which I know the history: that is not more than 1.5 per cent.

The idiocy or imbecility developed from that source does not develop itself fully till the second dentition, and then there is a breakdown. The child is more or less intelligent, and is able to attain a certain amount of instruction in ordinary schools up to the age of 8 or 10; and then, at the period of the second dentition, there is a gradual mental breakdown, and they become very hopeless cases. The commonest assigned cause is that of convulsions during teething; but that is only the proximate and not the ultimate cause in such cases. Convulsions are said to account for as many as 33 per cent of all our cases.

How far preventable or capable of diminution?

658. Idiocy being generally accompanied by an abnormal or imperfectly developed physical organisation, which retards the growth of the intellectual and moral powers, idiots require a distinctive treatment in separate institutions, where the resources of the skilful physician can best be employed for the modification or correction of those defects which obscure the mind. The Commissioners in Lunacy, and the medical profession generally, condemn the association of idiots with lunatics as in all respects very objectionable and mutually injurious. In their Report for 1865, the Commissioners observe: "It has long been our opinion, as the result of extended experience and observation, that the association of idiot children with lunatics is very objectionable and injurious to them, and upon our visits to county asylums we have frequently suggested arrangements for their separate treatment and instruction.


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It is always to us a painful thing to see idiot children, whose mental faculties and physical powers and habits are capable of much development and improvement, wandering, without object or special care, about the wards of a lunatic asylum. The benefits to be derived, even in idiot cases apparently hopeless, from a distinctive system, and from persevering endeavours to develop the dormant powers, physical and intellectual, are now so fully established that any argument on the subject would be superfluous."

659. We agree with the opinion of the Commissioners. As such distinctive treatment is necessary, the question is, how far are they capable of improvement?

Improvement or Education of Imbeciles

660. The evidence we have received, and the visits we have made to the existing asylums, have convinced us that a substantial percentage of the idiot class are capable of improvement.

661. The evidence of Dr. Shuttleworth shows that they can be divided into three classes:-

First, those capable of learning to read and write; secondly, those capable of benefiting in a minor degree by school instruction and discipline; and thirdly, the ineducable class. ... Their capacity for education is that about 40 per cent are capable of learning to read and write (i.e., 40 per cent of those at present attending school); and that about 45 per cent are capable of benefiting in a minor degree by school instruction and discipline. These learn useful matters in school which make them better able to be employed industrially; for instance, they are rendered more obedient and intelligent, and perhaps become able to discriminate colours, or tell the time by the clock, or practical matters of that sort, which, though not reading and writing, are very important to them in daily life. Then the ineducable, those that will not improve much, if at all, are set down as 15 per cent, of the present number. This is an estimate, not the actual proportion of results.

The records of the asylum show that out of 100 boys discharged after seven years' training there were 36 who had learnt to read, 14 well, and 22 fairly; 36 who had learnt to write, 21 well, and 15 moderately; more can write well than can read well. In arithmetic, in which, unfortunately, the patients do not excel, there were only 20 who had learnt anything appreciable in the way of sums, four who could work sums in the four simple rules, and 16 who could work sums in simple addition only.

At the Albert Asylum, out of the 424 discharged since the opening of the institution, four have been returned on their books, and to the Commissioners, as 'recovered', that is to say, having no longer any such imbecility as would justify the asylum authorities in certifying them as imbeciles. 546 remain in the institution; there is no description of those. 355 have been returned as 'relieved' (a technical term), that is to say, improved in a greater or less degree. Of those, roundly classified, there were 110 very much improved, 120 moderately improved, and 125 slightly improved only. Then 65 were 'not improved', many of these being confirmed epileptics, or children who on arriving at the age of puberty have become insane; and some of them were unwisely removed by their friends before they had time to improve.

The account of those received after at least a year subsequent to their discharge is that 18 are, or have been, earning wages, that is equivalent to 10 per cent; nine are remuneratively employed at home, that is equivalent to 5 per cent (remuneratively employed at home means that they are doing work which their parents would otherwise have to pay people for doing); there are six who are quite capable of earning wages as their parents tell us, if they could only find suitable situations for them; that is equivalent to 3.5 per cent. Then there are 33 others who are more or less useful in small domestic matters at home, that is equivalent to 22 per cent; there are 39 at home reported to be of little or no use, equivalent to 22 per cent; there are 51 in asylums and workhouses, equivalent to 29 per cent; and 15 have died since leaving the institution, equivalent to 8.5 per cent. So that, speaking generally, over 40 per cent are favourably reported of, and to this might be added 10 per cent more from the asylum and workhouse contingent as patients who are really able to work if they have the opportunity, and in fact are working in those institutions.

662. The Scotch Commissioners in Lunacy reported in 1886 of the Larbert Asylum:-
Eighteen boys and sixteen girls are at present regarded as incapable of receiving any education beyond the cultivation of orderly and cleanly habits. Great care is, however, bestowed on these children, in giving them such training as they can receive. And the benefit which is thus conferred upon them is properly regarded as one of the most beneficent parts of the work of the institution; for though the level to which they are raised is not a high one, they are lifted out of a condition of extreme depravity, and they are removed from a state of constant discomfort to one of not only comparative but of great comfort.

Forty boys and twenty girls receive training in school which is intended to cultivate their intelligence and their physical capacities, so as to make them, more or less, helpful to themselves.

Sixty boys and twenty girls receive elementary instruction of the kind ordinarily given in schools, including reading, writing, and arithmetic. All who are capable of singing receive a lesson every day.

The progress made by the children in education is in many instances very gratifying and encouraging.

One boy, who is about to leave the institution, has learned to play the piano, and is to be apprenticed to a music dealer, with the expectation that he will be of use as a tuner of instruments.

663. It must not be supposed, from this comparative success, that it is possible to overcome the mental depression of this class by training, however careful. To develop the capacity of imbeciles in every way, either for education, happiness, or industrial employment, is an object worthy of attainment, and of all the pains bestowed on them; but such training can never qualify imbeciles to compete on equal terms


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with those who possess the "mens sana in corpore sano". In the last report of the Albert Asylum, Dr. Shuttleworth states that:-

A comprehensive retrospect of the experience of the institution enables me to state that from 15 to 20 per cent of the patients discharged after full training, whose histories were known, were capable of remunerative work, and were for the most part earning their living. Amongst the occupations followed, five were working on farms; one was a cattle-drover; one was an under gardener earning 14s. a week; five were in shops; two were working as tailors; two were shoemakers; two were in mills; and one was a joiner on his own account in New Zealand. Of the girls, three were in employment as domestic servants; one had been apprenticed to dressmaking; one picked silk for a mill; and eight were engaged in domestic work at home.
664. It has been proved by the records of the institutions that they have succeeded in a certain percentage of this class, who are improved in their habits, and become greatly lessened burdens on their families and society. Dr. Duncan, F.R.S., and Mr. Millard, in their work on the "Classification, Training, and Education of Idiots", thus describe the success of specific treatment:-
Weak physical powers have been strengthened, uncleanly habits have been cured, the spiteful and irritable have become calm, the dependent self-depending; the idle have been rendered useful, the untutored have learned to read, write, count, and draw; the ability to earn much towards their own livelihood has been acquired by some, while in a few instances the capacity for earning sufficient for a maintenance and laying it out for themselves has been gained; and the moral and religious feelings have been aroused and fostered, so that excellent characters have been produced, and deeds of simple kindness have been performed by those who were once selfish, sensual, and depraved.
665. This improvement leads, in Dr. Shuttleworth's experience, to the following satisfactory results;-

(a) To the extent of being self-supporting
Some who are not capable of making much progress in book learning are of considerable use in the laundry, and other labouring departments of the place, in domestic work, in making beds and scrubbing floors, and in outdoor work, in such matters as weeding and wheeling barrows.

Others are useful on the farm, and show a great love of animals, and can be trusted to look after stock.

(b) To the extent of being self-helpful and of some use to their friends
The degree of improvement in some cases was of course very various, ranging from a fair degree of industrial capacity acquired to slight amelioration of intelligence and habits, the latter improvement, though of humble character, being much appreciated by parents. It may be estimated approximately that about one-fourth of those discharged were able to do serviceable work under more or less supervision. Another fourth, though less capable, had made some progress in education and industry; and the remainder were better conducted, and more able to do simple matters for themselves than when admitted. One or two patients were removed by their friends with a view of finding situations for them before their period of training had expired.
666. Sir A. Mitchell says:-
It is of very little use to be able to read words of two or three letters, but it is of great use to teach an imbecile to put his clothes on and take them off, to be of cleanly habits, to eat tidily, to control his temper, to avoid hurting others, to act with politeness, to be truthful, to know something of numbers, to go messages, to tell the hour by the clock, to know something of coins, to enjoy and understand games, and a hundred other such things.
667. The late Dr. Seguin, the distinguished physician, who may be regarded as the pioneer in this noble work, said, after thirty years' practical experience in the education and training of idiots:-
Idiots have been improved, educated, and even cured; not one in a thousand has been entirely refractory to treatment; not one in a hundred who has not been made more happy and healthy; more than thirty per cent have been taught to conform to social and moral law, and rendered capable of order, of good feeling, and of working like the third of a man; more than 40 per cent have become capable of the ordinary transactions of life, under friendly control, of understanding moral and social abstractions, of working like two-thirds of a man; and 25 to 30 per cent come nearer and nearer the standard of manhood, till some of them will defy the scrutiny of good judges when compared with ordinary young men and women.
668. Dr. Shuttleworth knew several cases of boys who were working well on the farm or in the garden, or in the shops, who have been sent to lunatic asylums because their friends were not people who were capable of managing them, and finding situations for them; and in the lunatic asylums they are still employed on the sort of work that they had learnt previously.

(c) To the extent of being happy, and less offensive to the community

669. The contrast between the idiot at home and the idiot in an institution is very great. In the opinion of Sir A. Mitchell -

However great the improvement, every child leaving the best of institutions for the education of imbeciles, will still be imbecile. He may be much less imbecile than when he entered, but he will still be

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imbecile. This, however, is no reason why earnest efforts should not be made to do all that can be done, and it does not seem to us to weaken in any material sense the claims of imbeciles to get such education as they can receive.
670. We have seen that education of this class is possible, but the ordinary means of education are not suitable, and these children require exceptional treatment.

671. The means requisite for such improvement are -

(a) Physical

The low vitality and generally defective physical organisation of idiots and imbeciles (proved by the feeble health and high mortality of this class as compared with normal children) necessitate efforts to improve their constitutional condition and physical powers by good food, healthy surroundings, judicious medical and nursing care, and specially adapted physical exercises. Faulty personal habits have to be corrected.

672. Many of them have not had sufficient nutriment to develop their intelligence.

It is the exception that they should be of good physical development; and before the intellect can be developed it is necessary to develop the bodily powers, to give them good food, and to train their muscles.

In the first place it is absolutely necessary to train the body as a preliminary to training the mind, by putting the children through various physical exercises which command their obedience, and so fix their attention, that is to say, drill and calisthenics of the simplest character. Then the senses have to be more or less exercised; and we have exercise of a simple character for the hands. Physical imperfections are often shown in the use of the fingers; some or these children have spasmodic affections of the fingers which prevent them holding a pen or pencil. Until those are overcome you cannot set them to write or to draw. Many remarkable instances of that kind are recorded at Lancaster. Such children when they came into the institution were not able to hold a pencil, but by a series of exercises, exercises very often such as putting pegs into holes in a board, which makes it necessary for them to grasp firmly, they get, after a while, the control of these unruly muscles, and are able to hold a pencil or pen. We have some half dozen boys in the institution who can draw and write extremely well who were not able to hold a pen or pencil when they came in. This shows the usefulness of these preliminary exercises.

(b) Moral
Kindness and firmness are essential to gain the confidence and obtain due control of the pupil. Religious feeling must be awakened and informed.

The moral education of these children involves the question of not merely the instruction they receive in school, but their care out of school as well; it is necessary to have, therefore, a staff of persons who have the necessary kindness in their composition, and the necessary firmness to gain the confidence and obtain a control of the pupils. These children, like other children, can be taught the difference between right and wrong. There are, of course, a class of imbeciles who are more difficult to deal with than ordinary children, but that is a matter that should be borne in mind in any system of education; they should be taught by rewards and punishments the difference between right and wrong, and their duty towards their neighbour, and so forth. Some of them are very susceptible to religious feeling.

(c) Educational, consisting of -

673. (I) School exercises

School exercises based upon the axiom of Seguin, that "The education of the senses must precede the education of the mind", and include -

(a) The cultivation of the perceptive faculties, and improvement of speech.
(b) Simple manual exercises (to overcome imperfections on use of fingers, etc.).
(c) Occupations, like those of the kindergarten, object and picture lessons, lessons in shopkeeping, and other practical matters forming an introduction to education.
674. All the kindergarten exercises are exceedingly valuable in the same way, and such as threading beads, laying sticks, paper plaiting, and so on.
Those are very good preliminary exercises, leading to what is really useful work afterwards. This paper plaiting, for instance, is a good preliminary for darning stockings. To the practical effect of these school exercises must be considered, every lesson must be presented as far as possible in a concrete form, that is to say, illustrated by objects or pictures. These children have very little imagination, and their imagination is apt to go wrong if they have not the meaning of things explained to them through the eye, or by touch sometimes.

The shopkeeping lesson is of great use to them, inasmuch as when they go to their friends, and are sent to a shop for common articles, they see that they get the right articles, and that they receive the right change.

675. (II) Industrial training
(a) Simple housework.
(b) Simple outdoor work and garden and farm work.
(c) Sewing and certain handicrafts.

Plain knitting, plain sewing, house-cleaning, washing, digging, filling, wheeling, and emptying barrows; these and such things are what the many can learn to do in a way which makes them really more useful in after life, and which helps them to contribute to their own support. They are not showy acquirements, but they are solidly useful, and their importance seems to me to be increasingly recognised.


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676. These are all successfully carried on at Larbert, Earlswood, Darenth, Lancaster, and Starcross, as are mentioned in the reports of our visits.

677. The means above indicated imply -

(a) Skilled supervision and hygienic surroundings.

In the visits to Lancaster, Starcross, Earlswood, Darenth, Larbert, and the Stewart Institution, we saw everything that is possible to be done under a good staff by a cheerful and healthy atmosphere, both physical and moral, to stimulate and encourage the dawn of intelligence, and when elicited, to foster it, seems to have been thought of and carried out. The staff in every case seemed well selected.

(b) A healthy moral atmosphere.

Much depends on their surroundings, on the cheerfulness and healthy moral tone of their teachers and supervisors. Drill and gymnastic exercises fix their attention, and promote physical development.

678. Musical entertainments, dancing, and dramatic entertainments are especially useful as a means of training. Since the visit of the Royal Commissioners a large recreation hall has been opened at the Royal Albert Asylum.

Play constitutes a most important part of the training of imbecile children. It is a question, indeed, if anything does more to strengthen and brighten their weak, dull, mental faculties. I refer to free play, and not to play which has a certain character of drill and discipline about it. ...

This free play is an essential part of the training of imbecile children. It should never be omitted, and it should be independent of weather. More thought should be given to this means of education and training than has yet been given. It tends greatly to the success of other means of training.

(c) A large staff of well-trained instructors.
It is very important to have a staff of well-trained teachers. That would follow almost from the description of the sort of school exercise necessary; it requires an immense amount of patience to be a good teacher of imbeciles. The ordinary idea that anyone would be able to teach imbeciles is not a correct one; a person must be a good teacher of ordinary children to be a good teacher of imbecile children.

At Lancaster they are usually persons who have gone through the pupil-teacher course in an elementary school. Not necessarily certificated, but they have gone through the course which pupil-teachers have to take; some of them are certificated.

If the State should require certificated teachers there would not be any difficulty about it, but it would be well to have them certificated specially, because the training we require for those classes is something beyond what suffices for an ordinary school.

Age of entry

679. At the Albert Asylum the children are admitted at seven years, and are generally, as a rule, retained seven years, but Dr. Shuttleworth considers that time far too short. The training should be extended to ten years or more.

680. It would be very undesirable to send a child home at the age of 13, and the education should begin at a later age than six; ten years is a better age than six or seven, because by the end of the election period the boy or girl will have almost grown up. If the committee find that the friends cannot pay for the child, it has to go home. That is a matter of finance, but in any general system the educational period, which includes industrial training, should be extended beyond that; it should extend to the age of 21, imbeciles being of slow physical as well as mental development. The practice at Lancaster has been as follows:- The elected cases have been discharged as a rule at the end of seven years. Sometimes the committee have increased the term to eight and even nine years when progress has been evident at the end of the seven years; and there was a probability of its being continuous by extending the period, and if a boy is learning a trade at the time his election period has expired, the committee often give him an extra year or two; and a few patients have been retained for their services.

Occupations

681. The occupations which are most suitable to imbeciles are of an industrial character.

With regard to industrial occupations, about one-fourth of those who have been put to trades, that is to say, to handicrafts, shoemaking, and so on, do well; whereas, about half of those employed in outdoor work do well, that is to say, outdoor occupation is generally better suited to imbeciles than indoor handicraft occupation. That is borne out by what is found with regard to the nature of the occupations of the discharged patients, of which returns from time to time were obtained.

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Separate Schools
Such an education as is given in a special institution could not be given in the ordinary elementary schools, even if there were a class for imbecile children in such schools. The number of children called imbecile would be extremely small who would be benefited by classes at an ordinary school, because so much of the training depends on care out of school, and if they went to their own homes, where they would not have that care, a good deal of the school education would be wasted.
Difficulty of Compulsion as regards Educational Conditions

682. Should the educable imbeciles and idiots be compulsorily educated by the State, in the same way as other children, as far as they are capable of education? Dr. Shuttleworth thinks it is the duty of the parents, and the State should enforce that duty, to improve imbecile children as much as they are capable of being improved; and in any general scheme of education the interests of the imbecile class should not be left out of sight.

683. In America 11 out of the 14 institutions are supported by a grant of the State Legislature as part of the educational system of the State.

As a certain percentage are capable of improvement, and able to support themselves or to help their friends, it is therefore maintained that it is desirable on general economical grounds that this class should, as far as possible, be taught to earn their own livelihood.

There is great difficulty in getting the parents to send their children compulsorily to some school. It is to be borne in mind that these children are the offspring of not very strong-minded people; and the mothers of imbeciles very frequently make some amount of trouble about parting with them. There is naturally a very strong affection on the part of mothers towards their afflicted children. At the same time, if imbecile education came to be a system recognised by the State, a good deal of that objection would pass away.

It is also found that the better class of girls are kept at home by their friends to a greater extent than the corresponding class of boys. Of course that is the reason of their slight scholastic inferiority; but with regard to the number, the number of girls in institutions is only half that of boys. That is the case throughout this country, and in the United States and other countries there seem to be fewer imbecile girls born than imbecile boys.

684. However desirable it may be to compel parents to send their imbecile children to an institution, it would not be possible to do so till there were greater facilities for getting the imbecile children of paupers, or of persons just above that class, into an institution, as the law by which up to now unions can combine together to provide one is practically a dead letter.

685. At present Darenth is the only asylum exclusively for paupers to which they can be compulsorily sent, and then only from the metropolitan district; at the other institutions the inmates are admitted either by election or payment.

686. Mr. Wodehouse of the Local Government Board is not in favour of compelling parents to send children under medical certificate to such institutions, at least, certainly not by legislation, but thinks -

It might be possible for the Local Government Board to issue an order, where they were satisfied that the person in question was a fit and proper person to be sent to such an asylum and the guardians refused to send him.
687. Even when they have bad parents, it is a very serious thing to interfere with parental responsibility, and the witness would require very strong evidence to induce him to support a proposition which amounts practically to compelling a person to sand his child to a pauper institution.

688. If it could be shown that a parent was neglecting a child, he thinks proceedings might be taken before a magistrate.

689. But that would not meet the cases where the child is not neglected by his parent, cases where it is cared for at home but is not properly treated; because it cannot be properly treated in a private home in the same way as in an institution so far as curative treatment is concerned. In cases like that Mr. Wodehouse thinks that any such compulsory provision should be fenced round with the most serious provisions for magisterial investigation into the circumstances of the case before such an order is issued. The real difficulty is the extreme difficulty that the guardians have in providing for these idiot children. It is not that the guardians neglect, or are unwilling to perform, their duties, but that they really have no means of doing it.

690. If these asylums were made more numerous in England, and situate at more convenient centres, there would be less objection to sending the children to a


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neighbouring place than there would be to sending them to a large asylum at a considerable distance from the parents' home.

691. It is admitted by the same witness that there is a very inadequate provision for the imbecile class.

692. The Special Committee of the Charity Organization Society recommended in 1877 the establishment of schools for 500 imbeciles, and of asylums for adults in every large centre or group of counties.

693. We think there should be for every group of counties an institution similar in character to Darenth, divided into two sections, one of which should be confined solely to educable imbeciles, where the children of those parents who are either paupers or cannot afford to pay for the maintenance of their children in an institution could be sent by the guardians or school authority. When this is accomplished it is possible that there would be no necessity for compulsory legislation, as the parents would probably see the advantage of sending such children to an imbecile home.

State Aid to Imbecile Institutions

694. We think generally that this class should be treated by the State in the same way as we have recommended that the deaf, dumb, and blind children should be treated, and participate in capitation grants, based not on individual results but on the general character of the institution as a training and educating body.

695. At Lancaster the guardians pay from 26 to 35 a year for the pauper patients. They get 4s. a week from the Government on application to the Local Government Board, and the grant is given because the idiot is still considered a lunatic in the eye of the law. In Scotland a similar grant is given to the children, not only as lunatics but as paupers, on application to the Board of Lunacy, with two medical certificates in a prescribed form. These certificates must declare the child to be of unsound mind, and also to be capable of deriving benefit from training and treatment in an institution for the training of imbecile children. We think that the grant should be given, not, as in Scotland, to the children as paupers, but as imbeciles under proper medical certificate, whether the parents are paupers or above that class; that is to say, not only for paupers but for election cases, on the ground that their parents could not afford the costly educational appliances which the exceptional condition of the children render necessary.

Cost of Inmates at Asylum

696. At Lancaster the cost is 12s. 3d. per week; including building and furnishing, 13s.4d.

At Darenth it is 10s. 2½d. per week; at Starcross, 8s. 4d.; and at Larbert, 13s. 10¼d. per week.

Inspection
If the State were to give an Education Grant to these institutions, the inspecting authority should report as to the general equipment and character of the institution, and the efficiency of the educational methods pursued, rather than judge by an individual examination of every pupil; for this reason, that the pupils themselves are a very peculiar class, and they vary very much from day to day. It would be very difficult for a person coming as a stranger to an imbecile school to accurately gauge the knowledge of each pupil. Imbecile children are prejudicially affected, sometimes by differences of atmosphere, and certainly by the presence of a stranger. Besides, much of the subject-matter of the education of imbeciles can hardly be put down on paper, the finger exercises, the exercises of the senses, etc. for which it would be rather difficult to give marks to an individual pupil.
697. The Government inspection of imbecile institutions is at present vested in the hands of the Commissioners in Lunacy, who are required both by the Idiots Act of 1886 and the old lunacy law to visit registered hospitals and houses at least once a year. Such visits are usually made without notice; the Commissioners see the children in the institution; they make numerous inquiries with regard to the management; they see the books, and with regard to the limited education which is given, although they have no power to enforce any recommendations, they generally take note of all the education and training there imparted.


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698. Dr. Reginald Southey and Mr. Bagot, on the 4th June 1887, made a report on the Darenth Asylum. They say:-

An average number of 320 children appears upon the school register, and of these again 286 attend the schoolrooms both morning and evening, the remainder working only half-days. The staff of teachers consists of one schoolmistress, three assistant schoolmistresses, and five school attendants. We can express our entire approval of the order maintained in the several classrooms, and the attention paid by the children to their teachers. Many, no doubt, learn and retain something of what they do learn, but perhaps the greatest good derived is due to the habit of self-control thus promoted.
699. In addition to the inspection of the Commissioners in Lunacy, one of the imbecile institutions in England and Wales (as well as many other charitable institutions, such as those for the blind, deaf, etc.) is inspected by the inspectors of the Local Government Board, Whitehall, under the provisions of 25 & 26 Vict. cap. 43. But such inspection follows only on the institution being certificated; it is not compulsory for institutions to apply, and apparently it is not continued at regular periodical intervals, while institutions, even if uncertified, are at liberty to receive cases sent by guardians of the poor. There is, moreover, this curious anomaly in the law, that the authorities of an uncertified institution are at liberty to settle their own scale of payments with the guardians of the poor, whereas in certified institutions the amount sanctioned in that particular case by the Local Government Board must not be exceeded. The Royal Albert Asylum at Lancaster is an example of an uncertified institution. It will be apparent, therefore, that the Local Government Board, under their existing laws, could not well undertake such inspection as we refer to above.

700. We feel that though the school authority in the first instance as an educational authority should send a child to the institution most fitted for it, yet it would cause a conflict of authority if the school authority as well as the Lunacy Commissioners were to inspect and report upon the education in imbecile institutions. Moreover, considering that the mental training and the school education can never approach that higher scholastic character which would require its being placed under the supervision of the Educational Department of the State, and that other matters, such as the general health of the patients and their industrial occupation, equally demand attention, we think that there is every reason why this inspection might well be vested in the Lunacy Commissioners, who under their existing powers already exercise most of the above duties. They have a special knowledge of, and a sympathetic interest in, the work, and would probably do it better than anyone else.

Classification

701. It is necessary for the good government of an institution consisting of boys and girls of various ages that it should be classified in order that they may be properly supervised.

702. In institutions generally there appears to have been no difficulty in keeping the boys beyond a certain age, as in the Albert Asylum, together with a great number of young boys under proper regulations, by classifying them, and supervising the classes. There are also a number of girls of different ages in some of the institutions. No practical inconvenience has been experienced at Lancaster.

703. There ought to be two classes of institutions established under public administration, Schools and adult Asylums.

Till within the last few years the idiot or the imbecile child was invariably accommodated, not only in the same building, but in the same ward, with the victims to dementia, melancholia, or chronic mania. The effects of this indiscriminate classification and treatment were most pernicious, The young idiot or imbecile, at the impressible and plastic period of his life, suffered from daily and nightly contact with those confirmed or aggravated cases of lunacy, and the only opportunity available for his rescue was then allowed to slip, until his case also became aggravated or confirmed. The benefits of the new system have been signally satisfactory.

The complaint made with regard to Darenth is that when the children are grown up and are transferred to the adult asylum, they imitate the lunatics and pick up habits which they had broken off in the schools and which are very pernicious indeed. Of course imbeciles are very imitative, and they cannot distinguish when an act is committed or a word is said, whether it is the correct one or not, and they are just as likely to imitate the wrong one as the right.

Beyond that it is desirable to keep the educable classes from those who are apparently uneducable, they should be kept in separate departments in the same institution, but the departments should be entirely separate, so that the offices which are necessary, and the playground which is necessary, should be distinct, because the training of the children is a good deal affected by those they are associated with, and if a number of very dull children are sent into the same playground with the more hopeful ones, naturally they interfere with their recreation. Moreover, these dull children require a greater amount of care, and the conditions of playing are different with them.


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704. It is the opinion of competent authorities that idiots and imbeciles should not be associated with lunatics, and in this we entirely concur.

Supervision after leaving Institution

705. The adult imbeciles do not come under our direct survey. There is a great want of a home for idiots and imbeciles when they leave institutions, both for those who cannot support themselves and those who are a burden on their friends.

708. The result is that, for want of some assistance, they are sent to workhouses and asylums, and lose the benefit of much of their previous training.

707. It is difficult to ascertain how many imbeciles there are in workhouses and lunatic asylums. Many have never been to an institution. Dr. Shuttleworth describes how he has seen in some of the large unions in South Lancashire a number of imbeciles who are not trained in any way.

They sit all in a row in the imbecile ward and do nothing, and it is highly desirable they should be under some sort of training.
We have observed the same in the workhouses which we visited.

708. Dr. Rhodes, in his address at the Poor Law Conference at Chester, October 1888, stated that out of 4,500 idiots in Lancashire and Cheshire it was estimated that 1,400 were under 20 years of age; of this total number there were in the Royal Albert Asylum 293, so that there were five times as many idiots whose education was neglected or imperfectly carried on, as there were under proper care and tuition.

Feeble-minded Children

709. The Royal Commission on the Elementary Education Acts having suggested that the case of feeble-minded children would come more appropriately within our terms of reference, we have received evidence that there are a great many backward children in our elementary schools who require a different treatment to that of the ordinary children, and this had led to the recommendation of auxiliary schools for such classes.

710. There are a large number of cases excused from school.

711. Many children are absent from the elementary schools, not because they are incapable of being taught, but because of some physical infirmity. Dr. Warner, among the out-patients at children's hospitals and at the London Hospital who, on account of their exceptional condition are not attending schools, found -

Such cases as children who occasionally have slight epileptic fits, perhaps three or four in their lifetime, cases of slight chorea, cases of children who suffer from repeated sick headaches, especially when attending schools and who, upon that ground, are exempted; children whose nerve system is completely exhausted and appears to have been so for months or years; cases of paralysis, of defective development from birth, cases of defective development of body, with slight defect of brain (I do not mean idiots); cases of nystagmus; cases of squinting; cases of myopia; cases of rickets, specially seen about the head with frequent co-incident nervous symptoms; and cases of diseased heart and lungs; these cases seem to require an exceptional method of education. Children who are suffering from any of the defects mentioned ought to be under exceptional methods of education.

A large number of them are absent apparently without any certificate at all; only a few get certificates from me when they are my patients. (One hears at the East end of London they can buy them at 2d. apiece.) It is only in a few cases that patients of mine who, according to Act of Parliament ought to be in attendance and who are absent, have asked me or any of my assistants for any certificate, and from inquiries that I have made in the schools I believe that they are often absent without any certificate at all.

712. The remedy proposed by Dr. Warner is that they should be educated in a separate class in each school. He gives an illustration of the class of children that he refers to:
A little boy eight years of age, bright and intelligent in appearance, had lost both his parents; the mother died insane; he lived with his grandparents. He was liable to such strong and sudden outbursts of passion as to be uncontrollable both at home and in the day school, from which he had eventually been withdrawn as unmanageable. When removed to the country his health improved, and he became good and quiet; but when hr returned to London and his grandparents the quasi-epileptic outbursts of passion returned. He had suffered a few genuine epileptic fits, and his younger sister also. When last heard of the child was neither being educated nor properly controlled, and although at present harmless and capable of being taught self-restraint, he is likely on arriving at manhood to be a social failure, if not an absolute danger to the community. That is a type of many cases.
713. He places the number of such children at a much higher figure than the witness, General Moberly, who represented the London School Board.


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Out of 10,000 school children probably something like five per cent of the class to which I refer are not being educated. When once a fine for non-attendance is paid, no steps are taken to see that a child who, from special circumstances, is unable to be educated in the ordinary school, is cared for in any way; consequently a large number of cases are destined to certain failure. Such cases as those to which I have referred form a special class which could be easily picked out of the schools, and placed in small quiet classes, which could be easily dealt with under trained teachers.
714. General Moberly says that the practice of the London School Board is, or ought to be, to require a medical certificate in order to exempt from attendance those who claim exemption from some infirmity.

715. He states that there are 20 idiots attending school, and 435 not attending; under the head of those under 13 and permanently disabled there are a little under 3,000; 596 attending, and 2,358 not attending.

716. He believes that there is not 1 per cent of the children in the four schools he knows who are not being educated if they are capable of receiving education.

717. After taking from the 605,337, which is the total number scheduled, those who are on the rolls of the London board schools, and the defective classes, there are 14,259 children not accounted for in any way.

718. The London School Board has no medical supervision of the children in their schools to ascertain whether a child is weak-minded or an idiot; it is left to the master to determine whether the child is educable or not.

719. Dr. Warner does not think there is a great amount of harm done to healthy children of this class by school-work. The great evil is that children who are not capable of being educated by the ordinary methods are exempted from school attendance; that is to say, the treatment they get at the school leads to their exemption, and practically they get no training at all, and they degenerate morally and mentally, until one traces many of them in the hands of the police. He mentions a case:-

A little girl came under my care who was suffering from chorea; she got well and was discharged; she came back a second time, she was cured and went away; a third time she came back; inquiries were made, and she proved to be the child of some gipsies; every time the parents were hard up the child relapsed. She was then taken care of in a small home school, and all the nerve symptoms subsided. Shortly after she was at this school she began to steal in the school and at the home, and my opinion was asked again (I should have said that she had permanent heart disease, it was a case of brain defect), and after careful treatment all the tendency to steal had completely passed away. She has had one attack of chorea since, but she is now all right.
720. Deaf children or those with defective eyesight are not treated early enough in board schools.
I have seen children going blind, and have pointed it out to the schoolmaster; sometimes the children have been sent to a hospital to be treated, in some cases no attention has been paid to them. We frequently in hospital practice meet with deaf children who have remained utterly uncared for in any special way in the school; such children were found among the unplaced or in the lower standard.
721. In a school in Liverpool witness said to the teacher,
"Have you any special case to show me?" and he showed me a child that used to be a bright child, but which had distinctly deteriorated in brain power. When I looked at it I saw certain signs showing that the child was a subject of congenital syphilis that was attacking the organs of hearing, and the brain.
722. Dr. Shuttleworth is in favour of an auxiliary class or school in connection with the elementary school; to take children who are not capable of being promoted during two years, that is, moved up to a higher class for two years. Selection must be made of those suitable for instruction, as there are certain physical defects which disqualify children from attending ordinary schools; such as affections of the brain, uncleanly habits, and debility of body. These children, Dr. Shuttleworth (thinks, would not make progress in such auxiliary classes.

723. Dr. Warner thinks that these feeble-minded children can be recognised by certain outward and visible signs, which their teachers ought to know. Dr. Warner's views are not at present generally accepted, but they are under examination, and the British Medical Association have appointed a committee to conduct an investigation


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as to the average development and condition of brain function among the children in primary schools.*

724. Dr. Shuttleworth has furnished us with a memorandum on the treatment of feeble-minded children in Germany and Norway, which we think is well deserving of consideration and worthy of being followed up in this country. With reference to the education of children of abnormally weak mental capacity, we also insert a reprint from the Journal of Medical Science, and a paper by Dr. Warner, read at the Glasgow meeting of the British Medical Association.

RECOMMENDATIONS

We recommend -

1. That power should be given to school authorities to cause the attendance officer to report all cases of imbeciles neither attending any institution nor receiving education, and to obtain a medical certificate as to their fitness for entering an institution for educable imbeciles. On the receipt of such certificate, and on the application of the parent, the school authority should have the power and be required to send the child to an institution and contribute to its education and maintenance as we recommend in the case of blind and deaf and dumb children.

2. That in all cases parents should contribute according to their ability.

3. That power should be given to county or town councils, jointly or severally, to set up an institution for educable imbeciles, out of the funds at their disposal, wherever, as is generally the case, there is either insufficient or no accommodation.

4. That there should be a careful separation and classification of all cases in institutions.

5. That the education and maintenance of educable imbeciles should, when necessary, be continued in institutions up to 21 years of age or upwards.

6. That educable imbecile children should not be left for any time in workhouses or lunatic asylums, and that the guardians should report from time to time to the school authority and the Lunacy Commissioners all cases of imbeciles now or hereafter in workhouses in order that it may be determined whether they are suitable cases for transfer to proper institutions for educational treatment.

7. That the Lunacy Commissioners should inspect and report upon the training and education in all institutions open for imbeciles, and that they should also report as to the general equipment and character of the institution, and the efficiency of the educational methods pursued.

Feeble-minded Children

We recommend -

That with regard to feeble-minded children they should be separated from ordinary scholars in public elementary schools in order that they may receive special instruction, and that the attention of school authorities be particularly directed towards this object.

*The Committee of the British Medical Association have since seen 2,716 children in seven schools, and find their condition to be as follows -
Nervousness, and signs of nerve-weakness in 160; the signs of nervousness being to some extent of a temporary character.
Mental dullness, as indicated by facts observed and teachers' report in 88; of these signs of low nutrition were seen in 33,
The head (skull) was defective in size, shape, or form in 73.
Eye cases, including cases of squint and errors of refraction, 69.
Signs of disease and paralysis as well as indications of epilepsy were seen in a few cases.
Signs of defective nutrition were seen in 94 cases; of these signs of nervousness or nerve-weakness in 46.


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SCOTLAND

State of the Law

Parochial Board may contribute towards Asylum for Blind or Deaf and Dumb

8 & 9 Vict. c. 83. s. 67. And be it enacted, that it shall be lawful for the parochial board in any parish or combination, for the benefit of the poor of such parish or combination, to contribute annually, or otherwise, such sums of money as to them may seem reasonable and expedient, from the funds raised for the relief of the poor, to any public infirmary, dispensary, or lying-in hospital, or to any lunatic asylum, or asylum for the blind or deaf and dumb.
Parochial Board may pay for whole or part of elementary education fees of poor Blind Children between five and thirteen years of age
35 & 36 Vict. c. 62. s. 69. It shall be the duty of every parent to provide elementary education in reading, writing, and arithmetic, for his children, between five and thirteen years of age, and if unable from poverty to pay therefor, to apply to the parochial board of the parish or burgh in which he resides, and it shall be the duty of the said board to pay out of the poor fund the ordinary and reasonable fees for the elementary education of every such child, or such part of such fees as the parent shall be unable to pay, in the event of such board being satisfied of the inability of the parent to pay such fees, and the provisions of this clause shall apply to the education of blind children, but no such payment shall be made or refused on condition of the child attending any school in receipt of the parliamentary grant other than such as may be selected by the parent.
Children under fourteen must obtain Certificates of Elementary Knowledge
46 & 47 Vict. c. 56. s. 4. Section sixty-nine of the Education (Scotland) Act 1872 shall be read and have effect as if it provided that it shall be the duty of every parent to provide efficient elementary education in reading, writing, and arithmetic for his children who are between five and thirteen years of age, and who have not obtained a certificate of ability to read and write, and of a knowledge of elementary arithmetic under section seventy-three of the said Act as amended by this Act, and also for any of his children between thirteen and fourteen years of age who have not obtained such certificate.

BLIND

Census

725. The number of blind in Scotland, according to the Census of 1881, was 3,158, of whom 1,556 were males and 1,602 females. The proportion was one blind person for every 1,182 of the general population, which seems to indicate that blindness is gradually decreasing, the proportions at the Censuses of 1861 and 1871, being one in 1,085 and one in 1,112 respectively. As already mentioned in our general remarks on the Census returns, there is good reason to suppose that the figures are, if anything, below the actual mark, and the superintendent of the Mission to the Outdoor Blind for Glasgow and the West of Scotland, considers the real total to be about 3,650. Of these the number of school age (i.e., between five and 15 years of age) were believed to be 240 in 1881 (the Census gives 210), and, striking off 30 as incapable of receiving education owing to bodily or mental infirmity, and 102 as undergoing instruction in schools, there were no fewer than 108 children of that age receiving no education beyond the occasional visits to some of them of missionaries and teachers of the Outdoor Blind Association. This state of things the superintendent of the above-named mission and other witnesses attribute mainly to the difficulty arising from the expense of providing educational books and school appliances for them.

Institutions

726. The educational institutions for the blind in Scotland were, until recently, five in number, viz., Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh, Glasgow, and Inverness, and in these industrial training and occupation were given to adults in workshops, as well as an elementary education to children in the schoolrooms. A very strong feeling, however, is beginning to manifest itself in Scotland for educating blind children in board schools along with the seeing, and several Scotch witnesses and deputations have expressed themselves in favour of this. Since the appointment of the Commission one school board (that of Glasgow), in addition to the education formerly given by them to a few blind children within their area, has taken over the education of the blind children formerly carried on by the Blind Asylum of the city. At the time that the Commissioners visited Glasgow in 1888, 28 blind children were being educated at various board schools, the special teacher dividing her time between the children in different schools, which she visited in turn. The board expressed themselves as highly satisfied with the result of the experiment, and they produced


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several letters from the head teachers of the schools certifying to the good progress of their blind pupils, and the habits of self-reliance and energy engendered in them by association with the seeing. One of the blind boys had been successful in obtaining a bursary, and three blind children had gained free scholarships, in competition with seeing pupils.

727. The blind are specifically included in the 69th section of the Scotch Act of 1872, which gives power to the parochial boards to pay the fees of poor children, but the deaf and dumb are omitted. There appears to be no doubt entertained by the Board of Supervision in Edinburgh (which exercises much the same control over the parochial boards throughout Scotland that the Local Government Boards do in England and Ireland) that the section referred to imposes on parochial boards the same duty as regards blind children as it does respecting seeing children. Nevertheless it will be apparent from what we have already said that the powers conferred by the Statute are very insufficiently put in operation, a considerable number of poor blind children being still uneducated.

728. We are of opinion, therefore, that it should be enacted beyond all possibility of doubt that it is the duty of every school board to see that every blind child should attend school in the same way and at the same commencing age as seeing children. The education of these children should be much facilitated by the fact that every parish in Scotland has its school board, and that every branch of education, from the lowest grade up to the universities, is under its control.

Industrial training

729. There is, however, need of better arrangements to ensure that blind pupils who have passed the Standards shall receive industrial training. At Glasgow this want was brought prominently under our notice, and we were informed that the total number of those eligible for admission to the Blind Asylum, who could not then be taken in for want of room, amounted to over 50. In cases like this we hope that the grant which we recommend (see paragraph 247) to be given by the school authority to enable young persons and adults to learn a trade, will encourage the institutions to enlarge their workshops and provide all requisite trade instruction. But in case of their failure to do so, or in places where no such institution may exist, we think that it should be incumbent on the school board either to start a technical school of their own under the Act 50 & 51 Vict. c. 64, or to send the pupil at the expense of the board to an institution elsewhere for the requisite training. In any case it is most desirable that there should be complete understanding and joint action between school boards and the authorities of institutions for the blind, so that immediately the pupil shall have passed the standards, industrial training may be begun.

Parochial Boards

730. It has been represented to us that it might be convenient in some places to leave the parochial boards to deal, as heretofore, with the questions of the parents' means, and of the proportion of the cost of educating a child which they are able to bear. At Glasgow, the parochial boards have, as we were informed, a department and special organisation for dealing with educational cases, and the school board appeared averse from any change in this part of the arrangements.

731. We are, however, bound to state that there is strong preponderating testimony, in Scotland as in the rest of the United Kingdom, in favour of vesting the power of contributing to or defraying entirely, the cost of the education and maintenance (if necessary) of children of these classes, in the hands of the school authority rather than in those of the parochial board.

Adult Blind

732. With regard to the adult blind in Scotland, it must be borne in mind that in one important respect they are less favourably situated than those in England and Wales, as the pensions there enjoyed by the blind practically do not exist in Scotland. It is doubtless this fact that has helped to make the Scotch industrial blind contend so strongly for the education of blind children in ordinary board, schools, so that the industrious blind may enjoy a larger share of the funds of the Scotch Institutions, and other endowments, given from time to time specially for the benefit of the blind.


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Endowments

733. These endowments have, in nearly every case, been left in connection with existing institutions, and, in the case of Aberdeen, the Educational Endowments (Scotland) Commission have framed a scheme for its better administration. The scheme is not very far-reaching, and is mainly designed to meet difficulties experienced by the governors. With the other Scotch Institutions the Educational Endowments Commissioners do not apparently contemplate dealing.

734. The income from the invested funds of the Scotch Blind Asylums amounted to 2,420 in 1887, exclusive of the Donald Fraser bequest at Inverness, which may amount to a capital sum of from 25,000 to 30,000. In addition to these there are a few miscellaneous trusts, the income of which amounts to about 68O per annum. The most important of these is the Webster, Speed, Watt and Johnston Mortification, which is distributed in sums ranging from 5 to 10 per annum chiefly for the benefit of the blind bearing these names. This trust has recently applied for and obtained a scheme from the Educational Endowments Commissioners.

Missions, etc.

735. The mission to the outdoor blind in Scotland, which has for its main object to teach the blind to read raised type, and encourage them in finding employment, was originated in 1857 with one teacher. There are now 10 separate societies (Aberdeen, Dundee, Dumfries and Galloway, Edinburgh, Fife, and Kinross, Forfarshire, Glasgow and West of Scotland, Northern Counties, Perth, and Stirling) employing 21 missionaries, who regularly visit throughout the whole of Scotland 3,100 blind at their homes. This does not include those in institutions. This number, when compared with the total given by the Census, 3,158, will show (even after allowing for these latter figures being under the mark) that the ground is practically covered by the operations of the societies. Their libraries contain an aggregate collection of 9,755 volumes, by far the greater proportion being in the Moon type. Of the whole number visited 45 per cent are able to read.

736. With a view of encouraging the blind to become self-supporting as far as possible, the Glasgow and West of Scotland Society have collected and invested 6,000, the income from which is annually given in grants or loans to necessitous deserving blind in that district who desire to commence trading for themselves.

737. The memorial submitted to us by the industrial blind of Scotland (see Appendix 1), expresses an opinion that State aid of a regular and reliable nature should be granted to all blind persons unable to earn a sufficient livelihood, and also a hope that such State aid may in no way interfere with their civil rights. We have referred in our general report (para. 124) to the position of the aged blind, and our recommendations that, on general grounds, they should be treated on a different principle from the ordinary pauper, and should not be subject to any legal disqualification in consequence of their receiving outdoor relief, are intended to apply to Scotland as well.

DEAF AND DUMB

Census

738. The number of deaf and dumb persons in Scotland at the time of the Census of 1881 was stated to be 2,142, of whom 1,149 were males and 993 females. The proportions of the deaf and dumb to the general population were 1 in 1,333 in 1851, 1 in 1,315 in 1861, 1 in 1,612 in 1871, and 1 in 1,754 in 1881, which indicate a diminution in the total numbers of persons so afflicted.

739. Of the total number in 1881, 93 men and 38 women were engaged in agricultural employment; 46 men and one woman in bookbinding, printing, etc.; 88 men and seven women did tailoring business; 67 men were in the shoe trade; and 76 females were milliners, dress-makers, stay-makers, etc. These appeared to be the favourite occupations for the deaf and dumb in Scotland, though a good number were distributed in various other occupations, particularly in different industries connected with textile fabrics, which engaged 39 men and 58 women.


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740. The total number assisted from the poor rates in May 1887 was 221, but of these 83 were children under 15 years of age undergoing instruction in special schools, so that the number above school age was 138 in all, viz., 44 in the poor-house, and 94 others receiving outdoor relief.

Institutions

741. The institutions in Scotland for the deaf and dumb are six in number, viz., Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh (Donaldson's Hospital, and Henderson Row), Glasgow (Langside), and the Smyllum Orphanage at Lanark for Roman Catholics. All except one have been visited by the Commissioners. The total number of pupils under instruction was 367, 207 being boys and 160 girls; of these 72 were paid for by various parochial boards (the number as given in the Parliamentary Return referred to above is 83), who annually contribute sums varying from 8 to 16 per head.

742. The majority of the pupils in these institutions appear, from the returns furnished by the authorities of the Institutions, to be taught on the combined system in one form or another, no less than 252 being so educated; 77 are taught on the oral system at Edinburgh (Henderson Row) and Glasgow (Langside); and 38, or a little over 10 per cent of the total number, are taught entirely on the sign and manual system. These latter classes belong to the two Edinburgh Institutions.

School Boards

743. Three of the school boards in Scotland, viz., Dundee, Govan Parish (Glasgow), and Greenock, have established classes for the education of the deaf within their districts, and in 1888 were educating 23 boys and 22 girls, all on the pure oral system.

Adult Deaf and Dumb

744. With regard to the adult deaf and dumb in Scotland there are six societies which concern themselves with their welfare, viz., the Aberdeen, Ayr, Dundee, Edinburgh, Glasgow, and Greenock Societies. The deaf and dumb members number upwards of a thousand, and the aggregate income in 1887 was about 2,000.

IMBECILES

State of the Law

745. The only special law in Scotland affecting imbeciles is contained in sections 7 and 8 of the Act 25 & 26 Vict. c. 54.

7. It shall be lawful for the Board to grant licenses to any charitable institution established for the care and training of imbecile children, and supported in whole or in part by private subscription, without exacting any licence fee therefor, and such licence may be in name of the superintendent of such institution for the time being.

8. With the sanction of the Board, agreements and arrangements may be made for the reception and detention of all or any of the pauper lunatics of any district, county, or parish in any public, private, district, or parochial asylum or hospital within or beyond the limits of such district, county, or parish.

746. They are supported out of the poor rate, whether they are in their own homes or are sent to institutions, and it is as compulsory on parochial boards to extend relief to these imbecile children as to extend relief to adult lunatics.

747. The law in Scotland still regards idiots and imbeciles as lunatics. What would necessitate the giving of relief in Scotland to an adult lunatic would necessitate the giving of relief to a juvenile lunatic. Age would not make any difference. All the children in the Institutions are intimated to the Board of Lunacy as lunatics. When an idiot child has a valid claim to relief, the parochial board must give relief, and in the way which is best for the child as determined by the Board of Lunacy.

Institutions

748. There are only two institutions for idiotic and imbecile children in Scotland, one at Larbert near Stirling, and one at Baldovan near Dundee. Both of these institutions are licensed by the General Board of Lunacy; under the provisions of section 7 of 25 and 26 Victoria, chapter 54.


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749. The institution at Larbert is licensed to receive 180 children, and there are 181 now in it - that is, one child in excess of the number for which it is licensed. The institution at Baldovan is licensed to receive 70 children, and there are only 50 children now in it.

750. The inmates of these institutions consist of three classes: (1) Pauper boarders or pupils who are maintained out of the poor rate; (2) Election boarders or pupils who are maintained out of the contributions of the charitable; (3) Private boarders or pupils who are maintained by their friends. In considering the question of State aid, these three classes must be dealt with separately. The pauper inmates of these institutions participate in the Parliamentary grant towards the maintenance of pauper lunatics. For each pauper child there is a grant in aid of 4s. per week, when the cost to the parish reaches or exceeds 8s. per week. When the cost is less than 8s. - in consequence, say, of part of the board being paid by relations - then the grant in aid is one-half of the cost. Before any pauper child can be admitted either into Larbert or Baldovan the sanction of the Board of Lunacy must be obtained. It is granted on a petition by the inspector of poor of the parish sending the child, the petition being accompanied by a statement of particulars and by two medical certificates in a prescribed form. These certificates must declare the child to be of "unsound mind", and also to be "capable of deriving benefit from training and treatment in an institution for the training of imbecile children". All the pauper children are thus certified to be in a greater or less degree educable. But the aid from Imperial sources may be regarded as given to them independently of the question of educability. They get it in consequence of being certified by two medical men to be "of unsound mind", which is enough to make them technically or legally "lunatics".

Before any parish can receive the grant of 4s. per week on account of any idiotic or imbecile child, whether he is provided for in an institution or under private care, the General Board of Lunacy must grant a certificate to the effect that the child was "necessarily detained and properly cared for" in the institution or house in which he was during the time for which the Claim for participation is made.
751. Pauper idiots and imbeciles who are not in institutions, but who live, with the Board's sanction, in private dwellings under the care of relatives or strangers, also participate in the grant towards the maintenance of lunatics. They do so on the same grounds as those which lead to participation in the cases of pauper imbeciles who are in institutions.
The question is whether it would not be as proper to give State aid to the children in institutions who are maintained out of the voluntary contributions of the charitable as to give it to the paupers. It would not be necessary in their case to give it to them as being lunatics, but it might be given to them as being educable children whose parents are unable to pay for the costly educational appliances which the exceptional condition of the children renders necessary.
752. By the rules of Larbert Institution election pupils can remain for only five years unless special exception be made in their favour, and by the regulation of the Commissioners in Lunacy children are not allowed to remain either in that Institution or at Baldovan after having attained the age of 18, unless it be shown that they may with propriety be still regarded as children.

750. There are many imbecile children in Scotland, whose condition would be improved by the training which is given in institutions, but who are kept at home. The existing accommodation for such children, however, is not fully occupied. The two Institutions at Larbert and Baldovan are licensed to receive 250, but owing to the latter not being full the total number resident rarely exceeds 230 in the two institutions. Increased accommodation would be needed if all imbecile children who are capable of deriving benefit from special training were placed in institutions which could give that training.

754. Sir Arthur Mitchell considers that no alteration of the law is requisite in Scotland, but that to separate the educable from the ineducable would mean providing a fresh Institution at considerable cost. He adds that accommodation for from 300 to 350 educable imbeciles would be sufficient for the needs of Scotland for many years to come.

755. Although there are some differences both in the law and the circumstances of the blind, deaf and dumb, and imbeciles in Scotland, we recommend that for that part of the United Kingdom enactments similar, as far as possible, to those which we suggest for England and Wales should be carried out.


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IRELAND

State of the Law

756. The principal laws affecting these classes in Ireland are the following:-

6 & 7 Vict. c. 92 (1843)
14. And be it enacted, that the guardians of any union may send any destitute poor deaf and dumb or blind child under the age of 18 to any institution for the maintenance of the deaf and dumb or blind which may be approved of by the Commissioners, with the consent of the parents or guardians of such child, and may pay the expense of its maintenance there out of the rates raised under the authority of the said first-recited Act.
41 & 42 Vict. c. 60 (1878)
3. The guardians of any union may provide for the reception, maintenance, and instruction of any pauper above the age of 18, being blind, or deaf and dumb, in any hospital or institution established for the reception of persons suffering under such infirmities, and may pay out of the rates the charges incurred in the conveyance of such pauper to and from the same, as well as those incurred in his maintenance, support, and instruction therein: Provided always, that the amount to be paid by such union for the reception, maintenance, and instruction of every such pauper so received in any such hospital or institution shall not exceed the sum of 5s. weekly.

4. The guardians of any union may, with the consent of the Local Government Board for Ireland, send any idiotic or imbecile pauper to the workhouse of any other union, with the consent of the guardians of such last-mentioned union, or may, with the consent of the said Board, contract for the reception, maintenance, and support of any idiotic or imbecile pauper in any public or licensed asylum or establishment for the reception and relief of idiots or imbeciles, and pay out of the rates the cost of the maintenance, clothing, and lodging of such pauper in such workhouse, asylum, or establishment, as well as the cost of his conveyance thereto, or his removal therefrom, and the expenses of his burial when necessary: Provided always, that the amount to be paid by the guardians of such union for the maintenance of every such idiotic or imbecile pauper shall not exceed the sum of 5s. weekly.

5. The guardians may at any time, at their discretion, and shall upon the requisition of the managers of any such hospital, institution, asylum, or establishment, cause any such pauper to be removed therefrom and brought back to their parish or union.

6. No idiotic or imbecile pauper shall be sent by the guardians of any union to any hospital, institution, asylum, or establishment under the provisions of this Act, other than a hospital, institution, asylum, or establishment maintained out of public rates, unless with the consent of such relatives, if any, of the said pauper nearest of kin as can conveniently be found.

757. In considering the question whether, in Ireland, the education of these classes should be compulsory, we are confronted with the fact that, even in the case of the seeing, education is not compulsory in this portion of the United Kingdom. It is not within our province to enter into the question whether this is desirable or not, the fact, however, must influence us in forming an opinion as to the desirability of compulsory education in the case of the classes we have at present under our consideration.

758. It is possible, however, that the matter may be more simple than would at first appear; if education be offered to these afflicted classes in an acceptable form, it is stated that it is probable the parents and guardians of such children would be led to avail themselves of it; and therefore compulsion would be unnecessary. The evidence on this point of Dr. Walsh, Roman Catholic Archbishop of Dublin, and President of the Cabra Institution for the Education of the Deaf and Dumb, is most important.

If an educational system be established in Ireland fully and freely available in every case for the education of the classes of children in question, there will not be, I should consider, any need to apply compulsion to induce the parents and guardians of those children to give them the advantages of it.

Two things are here to be taken into account, both of them firmly established and abundantly illustrated by experience. First, there is amongst our people, even amongst the poorest of them, an earnest desire to have their children educated. Secondly, in the exceptional cases where this desire may be wanting, the influence of the clergy - and I may take the liberty of observing that in this I speak of the clergy of all religious denominations in Ireland - may be relied upon to give most effective aid to the legislature in securing the sending of the children to school, always, of course, provided that the system of education maintained by the public authority is one that puts no strain upon the conscience of either clergy or people.

Institutions or Day-schools

759. The question arises whether, in making further provision for the education of these classes, the system of denominational institutions, popular in Ireland, should be extended, or the day-school system adopted, as is partly the case in England and Scotland.


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760. The day school system is obviously best suited to large towns. In Ireland the rural population is relatively large (including in the rural population small towns or villages not large enough to supply sufficient deaf and dumb, and blind children to form classes). Besides the distribution of the population, however, there are other grounds dwelt on by witnesses, who speak with authority, for thinking that the system of education in institutions is, for the most part, that best adapted to Ireland.

761. Upon this subject the testimony of Archbishop Walsh and Sir Patrick Keenan are in accord. Sir P. Keenan says -

I know something about the interesting system of "centres" for extern pupils which prevails in London. This system, however, would not be feasible in Ireland. I have caused very careful inquiries to be made in the three largest cities, Dublin, Belfast, and Cork, and have ascertained that the elements to constitute a "centre" in any one of them are not found to exist. You have therefore nothing for it, in Ireland at all events, but to perpetuate the present utterly inadequate and defective system, even with a little modification, to which I shall refer, or to extend the resources and the numbers of the "institutions". The latter is the course I warmly advocate.
762. Archbishop Walsh's view is substantially the same.
The fact mentioned by Sir Patrick Keenan as to the absence of a sufficient number of those afflicted children to form even one educational "centre" for them, even in the city of Dublin, is of vital importance in the consideration of this portion of the subject.

I may add that by inquiries carefully made through the police and other official channels of information, it was recently ascertained that the total number of blind children in the city of Dublin not already provided for in our existing institutions was but two. This most satisfactory result, I need hardly add, is in great measure if not exclusively due to the watchful zeal and energy with which the interests of the poorer classes of our people are looked after by the clergy of the city, whether Catholic or Protestant.

As to whether the education of the blind) and deaf and dumb should be conducted in special institutions or in the ordinary national schools of the country?

On this point also I see no room for doubt. I fully agree with much that is said by those who are opposed to the training of children in institutions, at least to this extent, that I fully recognise the many and serious defects, or rather drawbacks, almost inseparable from such a mode of training. But in the circumstances of the present case the drawbacks to which I refer must, I fear, be regarded as necessary evils. The institution system is, notwithstanding all its drawbacks, a useful and desirable system when no better system is available. I cannot see that for the education of the children in question any other system is available in Ireland.

763. It is not unlikely that in Belfast, as in Glasgow, the day school system may be adopted for the early education of these classes, but it must be borne in mind that as regards the Roman Catholic population of Ireland there exists in the religious teaching Orders a machinery peculiarly favourable for making the institutions successful. The Commissioners at their visits to Cabra, Merrion, and Cork were much struck by this, and they have evidence that the same machinery may be applied to the industrial training of the blind, etc. in Ireland.

764. Archbishop Walsh, when asked, -

Do you think that any religious Order in Ireland could be found to undertake the industrial training of the deaf and dumb, and blind in schools analogous to the Artane Industrial School, or the education of the educable class of imbeciles?
Replied -
No misgiving need be entertained on this score. As regards the Catholic side of the question - and of course on this point I can speak only for the Catholic side - our resources in this respect are practically unlimited.
765. In the opinion of Sir P. Keenan it would be necessary to have denominational schools for the blind, and the deaf and dumb; Protestant and Roman Catholic schools. The general opinion is that an institution must necessarily, like a home, recognise an identity of religious belief amongst its inmates. So far as the Roman Catholic SChools are concerned, the system of religious Orders necessarily leads to complete separation of the sexes, and thus avoids to a great extent the evils attending the ordinary social intercourse of the deaf and dumb in a mixed institution to which we have referred in the earlier part of our Report (see paragraph 566).

766. The national schools in Ireland are at present open to the children of every denomination.

But unless you made these special schools to which deaf and dumb, and blind children were sent denominational schools, you would not get those to whom you might naturally look to be concerned in the work of educating these afflicted children - the clergy and the monks and nuns, and so on - to take an interest in the thing. They should be established on the denominational principle.
767. It is stated that this view would also be taken by the parents of children if they had the choice between an institution and a national school.


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768. With regard to large towns, the same witness inquired through the inspectors and the clergy of all denominations if there existed any number of children of these classes in the three large cities not in institutions, and he found that, except a stray one here and there, there was nothing of the kind. In country districts, of course, they will be scattered in ones and twos.

769. Our own inquiries in Cork and Belfast led us to infer that there must be a good many of the deaf and dumb, and some of the blind, growing up without instruction in those cities, and doubtless in other parts of Ireland as well. But, owing to the absence of compulsory education and such machinery as attendance officers, committees, etc., it is not possible to ascertain exactly the number of those who on account of their infirmities may be excused from attending school.

770. The Rev. Dr. Macnamara had the names of nearly 400 deaf and dumb children who ought to be in institutions, and are not.

771. Of the two alternative schemes (viz., day schools or institutions) Sir P. Keenan prefers the institution system.

772. Upon being asked whether, if a blind child could attend the national school of its village for some three or four years, so as to learn reading, writing, and arithmetic, the elements of geography, and so on, it would be in a better position to go to an institution than if it had not had the advantage of that training along with seeing children, the witness answered that -

Such a child would go to an institution infinitely better prepared to derive the higher advantages of the institution than if he had not had the advantage of that training. If such preliminary education as you are pointing at could possibly be given to a blind child in an ordinary national school for a certain number of years, that child, when it went to an institution, would very likely master all that the institution would teach him in a much shorter time than if he had not had that preliminary training.

But its general education, as I have already ventured to surmise, would proceed more satisfactorily in an institution with children of its own class.

773. The question was asked -
Is it a fact that deaf and dumb, and blind children do not get adequate education in the national schools, where they are in national schools?
774. The witness (Sir P. Keenan) replied, that so far as he could judge none of the present inspectors could tell of any genuine case of education, but he could himself testify to the following genuine case of a blind child.
I was, 33 years ago, head inspector of schools, and had under my direction the schools of the province of Ulster. In an ordinary national school in a remote part of the county Donegal I found a little blind boy, about 14 years of age, and, except that he could not read a book or a newspaper, he was the best educated national school boy of his age I had ever met; yet he had never been in any school in his life but that national school in that wild part of Donegal. He could calculate a sum in his mind just as well as other children could on their slates. As to his singing, one could not help being quite enchanted with it; he had a thorough knowledge of geography and grammar, and everything that a child in a national school might be expected to know; and he was unquestionably the brightest and most intelligent of all the children in the school. But he was an exception; he was a child of genius.
775. If the parents of blind children were encouraged to send them to the ordinary national schools throughout the country, such cases might be more frequent than the witness seems to imagine possible. He himself suggests that a special results fee for the instruction of such children might be an inducement to teachers to undertake as an extra branch this diversion from their ordinary duties.

State Aid in Ireland

776. The State in Ireland, as in England, does nothing in the way of paying the cost of educating the deaf and dumb or blind, save by contributions made to institutions from the boards of guardians. An Act (6 & 7 Vict. c. 92) provides that the guardians of any union may send any destitute poor deaf and dumb or blind child under the age of 18 to an institution. A subsequent Act (41 & 42 Vict. c. 60) removes the restriction as to age, and while giving the guardians power to pay for each person, provides that the weekly payment in each case above the age of 18 shall not exceed 5s.

777. It has been stated to us that children have been withdrawn from institutions to which they have been sent, as the guardians could not afford to go on paying for so long a time as is required for the education of a deaf and dumb or blind child. The question, therefore, naturally arises: Should the guardians be compelled to pay for the education of such children, and to what extent? Should the entire, or only


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a part of the cost of education of such children fall on the ratepayers, and what should be the area of taxation for levying such rates?

778. Sir Patrick Keenan's evidence on this subject is exhaustive:-

The "institutions" at present existing, though nominally private, are yet largely aided by contributions from the poor law guardians. I have, however, heard from most reliable authority that sometimes the guardians are stingy in making these contributions. Whatever the system of the future may be, the requirement of some local contribution will not, I presume, be abandoned. I would, however, make the local contribution compulsory, or in other words, I would require each board of guardians to send every deaf and dumb, and blind child, within certain limits of age, and whose parents belong to the poorer classes, to an institution. To minimise the tendency to stinginess, I am inclined to think that the best course would be to levy the poor law contribution, as was done in the case of the cattle plague contributions, by a "national rate". This would, probably, be only a farthing or a halfpenny in the pound. Whilst I feel so strongly as to the duty of the guardians, I feel quite as strongly as to the duty of the State. I think that, as in Ireland, the State awards four-fifths of the cost of the primary schools and gives, as in England, Scotland, and Wales, three-fourths of the cost of the denominational colleges for the training of school-masters and school-mistresses, at least the latter proportion, three-fourths of the cost of each deaf and dumb or blind pupil at an institution should be derived from the Imperial Treasury. If the cost per child were, say, 20, then 15 of it should come from the parliamentary vote, and the other 5 from the rates. To contribute to the maintenance of pauper lunatics is now an acknowledged obligation of the State. In the estimates of this year, 104,460 for this purpose is provided for Ireland. But to speak of education alone, every phase of Irish education but this of the education of the deaf and dumb, and blind, commands a share of the parliamentary funds.

The pauper children in the workhouse are taught by teachers whose salaries come from Imperial funds; the orphan and the outcast in an industrial or reformatory school is supported and educated largely by the votes of Parliament; the 400 and odd children of soldiers who are pupils at the Royal Hibernian Military School are supported and educated entirely by Imperial funds; the half million of children in daily attendance at the national schools get four-fifths of the cost of their education from Parliament; the Intermediate schools get the interest of a million of the Irish Church fund, practically a public grant; the students of art and science in Irish schools get parliamentary aid through South Kensington; students in archeology and Celtic literature are aided by the Imperial vote to the Royal Irish Academy; and, then, not to speak of the Queen's Colleges or the Royal University, or of any of the incidents of "professional" education, I think it may reasonably be asked why it is that the deaf and dumb, and the blind, are apparently alone left out in the cold. I shall not venture to dwell upon the generous practice of foreign governments in relation to the class of institutions under consideration. If, as I think ought to be the case, at least three-fourths of the cost be borne by the State, it then becomes necessary to arrange for efficient inspection. As the Commissioners of National Education already inspect, as I have shown, many different classes of schools, I do not apprehend any unwillingness on their part were the Government to desire them to undertake the inspection and administration of the institutions.

779. Archbishop Walsh's replies to the following questions show that on several points he is in accord with the witness just quoted.
The vast majority of the deaf and dumb and blind are children of poor parents. What proportion of the funds should in such cases the Imperial Treasury contribute?

It has been suggested that the latter pay 15 and the local rates 5, out of the 20 which may be assumed to be approximately the annual cost?

Should this be conditional on annual inspection?

In such cases, should it be compulsory on (poor law) guardians to pay their share?

ANSWER
The distribution of cost indicated in the question seems to me satisfactory, But the total amount mentioned, 20, seems altogether insufficient.

As to inspection, I know of no reasonable objection to it. I have never heard of any objection being taken to it in the case of our industrial schools. The two cases seem parallel.

I think the local contribution in aid of the Imperial grant should be compulsory.

If possible, I should wish to see it levied by some other authority than the poor law guardians. The reason is obvious. The contemplated system embraces elements which have nothing in common with the system administered by the guardians. Anything calculated to obscure the distinction would seriously embarrass the work.

If, for any reason, it be deemed advisable to have the contribution made by the guardians, I should, with Sir Patrick Keenan, prefer to see this contribution levied as a "national" rate. In such a case as this, the system of rates levied by local district authorities is open to many objections from which the other system is free.

As a result of levying the rate in this way, the local contributions should be paid, not directly to the institutions by the guardians of each union, as a contribution in aid of the support of a certain number of children then in the institution from that union, but into a common fund, out of which each institution would receive the sum payable to it.

Arranged in this way, the payment would be clearly separated from those made by the guardians for the ordinary purposes of poor law relief.

I would furthermore suggest that the national rate when collected should be so placed as to form one fund with the Imperial grant, the amounts payable to each institution from the two sources being then handed over to the institution in one payment.

780. With regard to compulsion, there is some difference of opinion; two witnesses are in favour of compulsion being applied to guardians to send all deaf and dumb, and blind children in their districts, whether pauper children or not, to some recognised


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institution for the deaf and dumb or the blind, but only on the condition that the State should pay three-fourths of the estimated cost.

781. Dr. MacCabe, on the other hand, rather resents the idea that the guardians require any such pressure to be put upon them. He says:

I am of opinion that to render compulsory the payment by guardians for the maintenance of children in special institutions is not necessary or advisable. I do not consider it necessary, because boards of guardians, as a rule, have not shown any disinclination to take advantage of the provisions of the existing enactments upon the subject. ...

I think that return that we made to the Commissioners shows after all that the guardians have not been wanting in their duty with regard to either blind or deaf-mutes at an educable age.

782. No doubt there are many instances in which "the guardians have not been wanting in their duty", and where compulsion may be unnecessary.

783. But, on the other hand, we have had evidence from the institutions that some boards of guardians do not pay anything, and that in cases where they did pay they have of late years withdrawn their support from the institutions on the ground of their not being able to afford it out of the rates.

784. In answer to the question whether a national or union rate would be preferable, Dr. MacCabe remarks:

I think that a union rate would be better. At one time I was rather disposed to be in favour of a National rate; but those who had much longer experience than I are very averse to seeing that principle ever again introduced. They tell me that it was very much abused when rates in aid, which were really national rates, were in use, and they think it better to retain the union as the area for rating purposes.
784. Archbishop Walsh, although preferring the larger area, is prepared to give due weight to this witness's opinion. He says:
I have already observed that I agree with Sir Patrick Keenan's view as to the area from which the local contribution should be raised, rather than with Dr. MacCabe's. But I feel bound to add that I know nothing of the reasons which influence Dr. MacCabe in his preference of a district or union rate to a National one. I fully recognise his claim to speak with authority on such a question.
Adult Blind

786. The limited area and population of Ireland seem to offer advantages for giving a fair trial to the Saxon system.

787. The opinion of Archbishop Walsh is clear as to the suitability of this system of supervision of the blind to Ireland, and its probable success. In speaking of the "Saxon system", he says:-

So far as I understand its arrangements, I regard it with unqualified admiration as a noble work of benevolent ingenuity. Its organisation seems to me to combine the maximum of efficiency with the minimum of administrative machinery. Even as a model in this respect, apart from every other consideration, I should be glad to see it introduced into Ireland.

I have no doubt it can be most successfully worked here. Certain existing charitable and benevolent organisations may be looked upon as having laid a solid foundation for its introduction. And many circumstances seem to show that in Ireland the system can be introduced with an exceptionally good promise of fruitfulness in results.

The main feature of the Saxon system, as I understand it, is the arrangement by which a permanent connection is kept up between the old pupils and the institution.

For our large towns, the establishment and supervision of workshops for the blind would form an essential part of the "Fürsorge" system if introduced into Ireland. From the want of some such provision the condition of many of the blind working men in Dublin, and, I daresay, in other cities and towns in Ireland, is deplorable.

788. We think that every institution receiving aid from the State, should be required, as a condition of the grant, to keep a register of former pupils. A groundwork would thus be formed for carrying out the Saxon system in detail.

789. Little is done, except in Belfast, to help the adult blind in Ireland by providing workshops for them. We should like to see the Richmond Institution in Dublin adapted to meet this want in that city. The principles we have recommended for England should, in fact, be extended to Ireland.

Aged and Infirm Blind

790. Before considering how best to deal with this class in Ireland, there is one important fact which should not be lost sight of.

791. In England some 35,000 is annually given to blind persons in the form of pensions. Most of these pension societies have their seat in London, and although


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not restricted to the Metropolis, they practically do not extend to Ireland, and are in some instances limited to natives of England and Wales or residents therein.

792. In Ireland such pension societies do not exist.

The good work therefore done in England by these societies must be accomplished in Ireland in some other way.

793. In the case of poor blind persons who have been industrious in their earlier days, who are known to be of good character, and have relatives willing and inclined to make them comfortable at home, outdoor relief should be given to an amount at least equal to the cost of their maintenance in the workhouse.

794. Those whose domestic surroundings render living with their friends impossible or undesirable should be maintained at the cost of the union in an asylum or home, such as exists in Cork. At Armagh and Limerick there are also homes supported by voluntary funds. Such homes are not sufficiently numerous, and should be open to all the aged and infirm blind, instead of their being placed in the workhouse.

795. Our own observation, as well as the evidence brought before us, has convinced us that the aged and infirm blind in many workhouses have a wretched existence.

796. The workhouse is nowhere adapted for such inmates, and Ireland does not form an exception.

797. Archbishop Walsh, when asked his opinion as to relaxation of the workhouse test in these cases, and whether, if their circumstances as regards domestic life were suitable, outdoor relief should be given to the aged and infirm blind, replied:-

Yes, undoubtedly. So far as I can follow the arguments of political economists against the giving at outdoor relief, those arguments are none of them applicable in such a case as this. There is no danger here of encouraging improvidence by the giving of relief on too easy terms. The poverty to be relieved in cases of this class has not been brought on by improvidence.

798. With regard to the question of outdoor relief to the blind being given by the guardians, the Medical Commissioner on the Local Government Board for Ireland when asked his opinion said:-

I should like to leave a good deal of discretion to the guardians. Very much depends upon the circumstances of each individual blind person, as to personal character, and as to the members or the family that they might have about them to take care of them - in other words upon local circumstances - so that I would prefer leaving it to the guardians to exercise a certain discretion; because there is no use in disguising the fact, that a great number of the blind in Ireland are people of anything but good character; they go about, and some of them are a very bad lot; and therefore I would rather leave it to the guardians.
Deaf and Dumb

799. We have referred in our Report of visits to institutions in Ireland to the less advanced character of the education of the deaf and dumb in that country. The pure oral system has made but little progress, and is at present practised only in the Claremont school, and even there to a very limited extent.

800. As soon as properly qualified teachers for the purpose can be obtained, pupils who have the remains of hearing or speech should be educated apart from those trained on the sign and manual system and in a pure oral school, and every child who is deaf should have full opportunity of being educated on the pure oral system.

801. We are aware that for this purpose further provision is required for obtaining teachers on this system, and that it will be necessary that trained teachers should be provided by the existing denominational institutions.

802. A suggestion, so long since as the year 1871, has been made by the Census Commissioners with which we concur, with regard to the deaf and dumb, that -

Her Majesty's Government should make it compulsory for poor law guardians (under the provisions of the Poor Law Act, 6 & 7 Vict. c. 92 s. 14) to send all deaf and dumb children in their respective unions dependent on them for support to the institutions for the instruction of that class; or that some State provision should be made for their education, either by instituting special schools in connection with the National system, or by granting aid to those already in existence.
Schemes for Institutions under the Educational Endowments Act

803. The Act for the re-organisation of educational endowments in Ireland (48 & 49 Vict. c. 78) has a wider scope and deals with endowments of more recent date than the corresponding Act in England (32 & 33 Vict. c. 56). The former Act extends to educational endowments down to the date of the passing of the Act - 1885.


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As in the Scotch recent Act (1882 c. 59), endowments for the payment of apprenticeship fees or for marriage portions, or for the maintenance, nurture or clothing, or otherwise for the benefit of poor children or young persons, may be dealt with as educational endowments.

804. On the other hand, endowments given to charitable uses or in the discretion of the governing body applicable to other than educational purposes, do not come within the reach of the Commissioners, and the Roman Catholic institutions under religious bodies are exempted from the Act.

805. "The Ulster Society for Promoting the Education of the Deaf and Dumb and the Blind", and also "The Claremont Institution for the Deaf and Dumb Poor of Ireland", have obtained, under this Act, schemes, framed and signed by the Judicial Commissioners (who are unpaid), and now approved by the Lord Lieutenant in Council. In each of these schemes, which have been finally sanctioned and are now before us, the denominational principle has been adopted, and the framers contemplate that these institutions are to be exclusively Protestant.

Idiots and Imbeciles

806. On this subject we examined Dr. Francis Xavier Frederick MacCabe, Medical Commissioner and late Inspector under the Irish Local Government Board.

807. The only asylum for imbeciles in Ireland is the Stewart Institution, at Palmerston, near Dublin, which we have visited. That asylum is not under the Local Government Board. It is, moreover, a twofold institution. As far as regards a small number of lunatics it is a private asylum, and is under the Inspectors of lunatic asylums. As to the idiotic children it is not subject to any inspection; it certainly is not under the Local Government Board.

808. So far as these imbecile children are capable of education and are educated there, they are under no Government inspection whatever.

809. Dr. MacCabe thinks it a very deplorable thing, that so far as regards the immense number of imbecile children all through Ireland, they should be under no inspection. In the only institution in Ireland, the number is relatively very small, the average being about 70. He is of opinion that it should be inspected by some competent authority.

810. As an inspector under the Local Government Board he has visited a very large number of the workhouses in Ireland, in fact, most of the principal workhouses; and there it was part of his duty to see any imbecile children who happened to be contained in them.

811. There was no particular provision made for their training.

812. The witness has not officially brought it under the notice of the Board, because the feeling of the Board and of the inspectors was well known. The imbecile children are scattered through the 161 workhouses of Ireland. In each workhouse they are in such small numbers that the Board never felt warranted in calling upon the guardians to make any special provision for them in any one workhouse.

813. But he thinks it desirable to assemble those children in some well-managed institution where they could be cared for and, if possible, improved.

814. The Local Government Board in Ireland neither inspects nor licenses asylums for lunatics or imbeciles, in fact, it has no jurisdiction over such institutions.

815. Several of the blind, and deaf and dumb are imbeciles, and the Acts affecting these classes are closely connected.

The 41 and 42 Vict. c. 60 is entitled the Poor Afflicted Persons Relief (Ireland) Act 1878. The 3rd section of that Act removes the restriction as to age prescribed in the 6 and 7 Vict. c. 92, as regards the blind and the deaf and dumb, provided for by the guardians in any special institutions, and while giving the guardians power to pay for such persons, it provides that the weekly payment in each case shall not exceed 5s. That Act makes a further provision which they have availed themselves of to a very small extant. The 4th section of it provides that the guardians of any union may, with the consent of the Local Government Board for Ireland, send any idiotic or imbecile pauper to the workhouse of any other union with the consent of the guardians of such last-mentioned union, or may with the consent of the Board contract for the reception, maintenance, and support of any idiotic or imbecile pauper in any public or licensed asylum or establishment for tho reception and relief of idiots or imbeciles, and pay out of the rates the cost of maintenance, clothing, and lodging of such pauper in such workhouse, asylum, or establishment, as well as the cost of his conveyance thereto, or his removal therefrom and the expenses of his

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burial when necessary; provided that the amount to be paid by the guardians of such union for the maintenance of every such idiotic or imbecile pauper shall not exceed the sum of 5s. weekly. That provision practically gives power to guardians, either to arrange that some one workhouse shall receive the idiotic and imbecile children of a county, or several counties, or of a province, or that they shall send them to a special establishment. But with regard to the sending of them to a special establishment, the proviso that the cost shall not exceed 5s. weekly, practically makes it Impossible to get any institution to take them. Imbecile children constitute a class that require a great deal of care and trouble, and attention; it involves an expensive staff, and a great deal of outlay if they are to be properly looked after, and if they are to be educated in such ordinary matters as personal cleanliness, tidy habits and neatness; and it could not be undertaken at a cost of 5s. per head weekly. The one institution that there is in Ireland for those children is the Stewart Institution for imbecile children. In a return up to the 31st March, which I obtained, although their average number is about 70, they only had 59 inmates; and of those 59 inmates, there were only nine imbecile children from the whole of the workhouses in Ireland.
816. There is this anomaly in the present state of the law. Up to the age of 18 the guardians are not limited to the payment of 5s. per week, but after the child comes to the age of 18, they cannot exceed 5s.

We think that this restriction should be removed.

Under the present law it is not clear that the unions can combine for lunacy purposes; at least they have not done so. But one of the recent Lunacy Acts gave power to the guardians of a union to come to an arrangement with the governors of a county asylum to take from them harmless and incurable lunatics, with a view of saving the counties from increasing the size of the district asylums for the mere retention of incurables. There is such a power as that between guardians and governors of asylums, and it has been exercised in two cases, but there is no power to combine for the other purposes, although it is very questionable whether under the 7th section of the Irish Poor Relief Further Amendment Act of 1862, it might not be done. That is the section that gives power to guardians to send any inmates for special treatment to extern hospitals. Dr. MacCabe thinks it might be possible under that section for the guardians of a particular workhouse to make special arrangements, for instance, for the training and treatment of blind and imbecile children, or for the matter of that even of deaf mutes, and that then the guardians of other unions might send their cases of that kind to that particular workhouse as to a special institution. The only doubt that he has is whether the guardians of the institution so chosen would have a legal power to receive those cases; but I do not think that is a difficulty that need be insurmountable. The key to the whole position with regard to that would be to give those classes some State aid. That would be a great encouragement to the guardians to combine, in order to make arrangements for them. Both with regard to the deaf mutes and the blind, and particularly with regard to the unfortunate imbecile children, they are scattered all through these unions in such small numbers that it would not pay to make arrangements for them. If they were collected in one house, it would pay; staff could be provided and devote itself to all of them.
817. The witness further desires the law to be altered with regard to the imbecile children. Some of them may be deaf; some of them may be dumb, or deaf and dumb; some of them may be blind. But the principal characteristic of their infirmity is deficient intellectual development; and he thinks that with regard to those children it is very important that they should be treated as non compos mentis, and that they should be looked after.
I think that the provision that was contained in a Bill that was drafted some years ago, called the Lunatic Poor (Ireland) Bill (No. 85, June 12 1883), and was read a first time in the House of Lords, ought to be embodied in any enactment with regard to these helpless classes. It was a Bill to amend the law affecting lunacy in Ireland. ... It placed upon relieving officers in their districts the duties of looking after any imbecile, or reputed idiots, and reporting to the guardians whether they were well treated at home, and where they were not well treated, it gave the guardians the power to take them into the workhouse. This provision would lead to all the imbeciles being registered, and I think they ought to be periodically visited and classified.
818. At present in Ireland the Lunacy Department is not under the Local Government Board. There are two Inspectors of Lunacy, who are in fact free agents as regards the management of their own department, and who are not connected in any way directly with the Board.

Major Trench's Commission

819. It was contemplated in the report known as Major the Hon. W. Trench's Report (C. 2239), and which was published in the year 1879, that in course of time the Lunacy Department and the Local Government Department should be merged in one, and that the Lunacy Department should be made a branch of Local Government management in Ireland.

820. Arising out of this Report there was a Bill introduced in the year 1883, and the machinery which this Bill proposed to use for discovering the lunatics and imbeciles throughout Ireland, was the Royal Irish Constabulary, or the Dublin Metropolitan Police Force, or the relieving officers throughout Ireland.

It was recommended in this report that there should be in Ireland a modification, in fact I may say an amalgamation, of the asylums of different kinds; and in general terms what they thought of having was

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district hospitals for the insane, intended for the more curable class of insane cases; lunatic asylums for the less curable or chronic class of cases; and auxiliaries to be attached to workhouses in certain parts of Ireland for the treatment of what we may call harmless lunatics, imbeciles, and so on.
821. In the opinion of the witness, this would be a very desirable change of the law, and remedy the present evils. It would supply a very manifest want.

822. The annual return upon the subject of idiots in workhouses sent out every year to the inspectors of lunatic asylums for their information includes only idiots under 14 years of age, i.e., who are probably capable of education, and have been kept apart from the epileptics. In Ulster there are 24 such; in Munster 26; in Leinster 12; and in Connaught 4, making a total of 66 now in workhouses.

823. Besides these there are the unfortunate idiots who are living at home, and are very badly taken care of. In 1883, Lord Spencer, the Lord Lieutenant, was very anxious to ascertain the condition of the unregistered lunatics at large; that includes lunatics and idiot children. In Ireland nobody looks after them. So little are they looked after that no Department has even taken the trouble to have them enumerated since the census of 1881, and the latest specific Returns about them were made for Major Trench's Commission already alluded to. It was found that there were then 6,700 of these persons all over the country, a large proportion of them being children. The Lord Lieutenant was anxious to know what was their condition, and witness was asked whether he would undertake to visit them at their own homes. He said that to undertake to visit them all would be impossible unless he were to lay aside his other duties; but that if he were permitted to take two unions as typical of their condition, one an urban union and the other a rural union, he would visit all in those two unions. He accordingly took the South Dublin Union as a type of an urban population, and the Carlow Union, which includes the whole county of Carlow, as a type of a rural population; and he visited all the unregistered lunatics at large. Nothing could be more deplorable than the state of the idiot children, and nothing could more eloquently show the necessity for their being looked after than the appendix attached to his report. Here is an extract giving an account of an idiot child, J. D.:-

I found that little boy, 14 years of age, an idiot, and he was perfectly naked, lying in a filthy bed, wretchedly neglected, unable from confinement to bear the light, and who ought to have been in an institution. That was a child that was lapsing into blindness from neglect. The next on the list is J. B., aged 16, another pitiable case - a congenital epileptic idiot lying on straw in a wretched room. He was whining and sobbing when I went in to see him. He was alone in the house, and the neighbours all stated that he ought to be looked after. He was lying naked, his limbs were contracted, his body filthy, and chilblains on his feet. That gives an idea of the condition of these unregistered idiots at large.

There is absolutely nothing done for them. I have found cases in my visitations in those two places where parents when they were obliged to go out to do their day's work, simply locked the imbecile children in. I have found them sometimes in a cabin in company with a pig, or a cat, or sitting over a fireplace without a fire in it in the middle of winter. And if they are able to go outside they are only too often made the object of ridicule by others, by the children about. The result is, that the worst parts of their characters are developed and brought into prominence, and all their gentler attributes are kept in abeyance. Then when you come to girls, who have just passed the age of puberty, even worse results sometimes follow. Imbeciles are not in a position to protect themselves, and instances are known where they have come into the workhouse when they were about to become mothers; and very often the mental defect is hereditary, and the offspring is imbecile also. So that imbeciles more than any other class, I think, want to be looked after.

824. The carrying into effect of Major Trench's Report and the Bill (No. 85) drafted in 1883 "To make better provision for the Lunatic Poor, etc. etc. in Ireland," and adding to it a special provision for this unhappy class, would make upon the whole a great improvement and a good working system in Ireland.

825. The ordinary idiot who is not educable might be provided for in what are called here the "auxiliaries", and the educable idiots might judiciously be provided for in a certain number of educational institutions, where all of that class could be sent.

826. Two educational institutions for the idiot class would be sufficient for Ireland, one in the south for the Roman Catholic imbeciles, and in the north one for the Protestant imbeciles.

827. On Archbishop Walsh being asked the question "As there is no denominational institution for the education of Roman Catholic imbeciles or idiots, should such institution be started previous to any grant being given from Imperial sources", he replied that he did not think it would be unreasonable on the part of the State to require that the institution should be in the first instance established.


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828. He also added -

I assume that help would be given to the promoters, either in the form of a building grant or of a loan repayable on easy terms.

I have no doubt that in the event of a definite arrangement being made, such as I have now indicated, the institution could be established on a very efficient footing without delay.

As regards buildings, I would suggest that some of the existing workhouses might be made use of for the purposes. Some reconstruction, no doubt, would be necessary to remove the depressing and prison-like aspect of those establishments. But the cost would be trifling compared with that of building new institutions. I understand that many of our existing workhouses can be dispensed with.

829. With regard to a grant from the State in addition to the contribution from the guardians, the witness thinks that the grant should be given to the guardians and not to the institutions, for the reason that deaf-mutism, blindness, imbecility, and epilepsy are all very frequently congenitally associated, and it is very difficult to say with regard to a deaf and dumb child whether it is suitable for an institution till it is sent there.

830, If the grant were given into the guardians' hands, they might either send a child to an institution, or if one were not available, they might take steps under the Local Government Board to set apart some one among the workhouses of Ireland for an institution, as has been already alluded to.

831. Sir P. Keenan would apply the same proportion of grant to the imbeciles as he does to the deaf and dumb, viz., one-fourth from the guardians and three-fourths from the Imperial Exchequer.

Recommendations as to the Blind, Deaf and Dumb, and Imbeciles in Ireland

832. We consider that the general principles which underlie the conclusions, at which we have arrived with regard to these classes, in the rest of the United Kingdom should be adhered to in Ireland. We are convinced, however, that there are important local differences to which we have already alluded, which make it essential that in some matters of detail, the question of the education of the blind, deaf and dumb, and educable class of idiots should receive special treatment in Ireland.

833. With regard to these classes, we think the true solution of the educational problem lies in giving every facility for sending such children to some properly certified institution.

We recommend -

1. That a grant should be given from the Imperial Exchequer of three-fourths of the sum necessary for education and maintenance, and that one-fourth should be provided from the local or union rates.

2. That there should be Government inspection in all cases where a grant of public money is given, whether through the Education Department, the Local Government Board, or any other channel.

3. That it should be compulsory on the guardians, on the application of the parent, to contribute to the maintenance of any child of these classes in a suitable institution.

4. That the education in institutions where the pupils reside should be denominational, and that the guardians (especially in the case of imbeciles), should have the power of establishing suitable institutions where deemed necessary.

5. That the recommendations embodied in the report of Major Trench's Commission (No. C. 2239 of 1879) should be carried out by legislation in the direction of the Bill of 1883, respecting the lunatic poor (Ireland), that the Lunacy Department be made a branch of local government management in Ireland, and that the educable class of idiots be registered, visited, and inspected by Inspectors under the Local Government Board.

On the following points we would emphatically repeat the recommendations made in our report on England and Wales:-
6. That every institution for the education of the blind receiving aid from the State should be required as a condition of the grant to keep a correct register of former pupils, and to establish aid and supervision on the Saxon system as soon as funds can be obtained for that purpose.

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7. That aged and infirm blind persons of good character should be entitled to outdoor relief in order to enable them to live with their friends, or be maintained in an asylum or home at the cost of their union, and that there should be no legal disqualification imposed on them in consequence of such outdoor relief.

8. That as soon as properly qualified teachers of the deaf for the purpose can be obtained, pupils who have the remains of hearing or speech should be educated apart from those trained on the sign and manual system and in a pure oral school, and that every child who is deaf should have full opportunity of being educated on the pure oral system. We are aware that for this purpose further provision is required for obtaining teachers on this system, and that it will be necessary that trained teachers should be provided by the existing denominational institutions.

9. It must be understood that our suggestions are not intended to be applicable to all children now under instruction, and that the recommendations indicated will, by their very nature, have to be carried out according as circumstances permit.


ISLE OF MAN

834. According to the Census of 1881 there were 66 blind persons in the Isle of Man, six of these only being of school age.

835. Among the adult blind are a pianoforte tuner, a basket maker, and a member of the Insular Legislature (since dead).

836. Some of the adult blind have lost their sight through accidents in mining. Most of these belong to benefit societies.

837. Special provision is made for the education of the blind and the deaf by the following section (3) of the (Isle of Man) Elementary Education Act of 1884:-

3. The school committee may, if they think fit, from time to time, for a renewable period, not exceeding six months, pay the whole or any part of the school fees payable at any public elementary school (whether within their district or not) by any child resident in their district whose parent is, in their opinion, unable from poverty to pay the same; but no such payment shall be made or refused on condition of the child attending any public elementary school other than such as may be selected by the parent; and the school committee may also, if they think fit, from time to time, for a renewable period, not exceeding one year, make a contribution towards the payment, in whole or in part, of the expenses of the education of a child who is blind, or who is a deaf-mute, at a school or institution (whether within this Isle or not) for the instruction of the blind or of deaf-mutes {as the case may be) the parent of which child is resident within their district, and is, in their opinion, unable from poverty to pay such expenses, such school or institution being one to which the parent may wish or consent that the child be sent.
838. There were, according to the Census of 1881, 35 persons in the island deaf and dumb. Of these, 12 were of school age. Nine (or three-fourths of these) were in three families, containing respectively four, three, and two deaf-mutes. These children have all been since sent off the island for training in institutions, 11 by voluntary agency, and one by voluntary agency assisted by the provisions of the Insular Education Act.

839. Among the deaf and dumb adults are an officer of the post office and a carter in regular agricultural employment.

CHANNEL ISLANDS

840. There were, according to the Census of 1881, 81 blind and 35 deaf and dumb persons in Jersey, and 48 blind and 18 deaf and dumb in Guernsey. In these islands there are neither laws nor public institutions relating to these classes, but in Jersey there exists a small private society for the benefit of the blind, started in 1886 by Professor D'Odiardi. Its objects are to educate the young blind and to assist the adult blind to help themselves by visiting them at their own homes, and by reading to them, and affording them instruction in knitting, sewing, or any branch of industry for which they may show an aptitude. Thirty blind persons were visited by the society at their own homes in 1887. There are four children boarded out with


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private families, and receiving, under the auspices of the society, instruction in English, French, German, reading and writing in the Braille system, arithmetic, history, geography, and music.

841. We think that the insular authorities of the Isle of Man and of the Channel Islands should pass such enactments as will carry out (as far as the local circumstances permit) the general recommendations which we make in respect of the classes referred to.

All which we humbly submit to Your Majesty's consideration.

(signed)
EGERTON OF TATTON, Chairman.
F. LONDIN.
LYON PLAYFAIR.
A. J. MUNDELLA.
HENRY JOHN SELWIN-IBBETSON.
EDWARD SOUTHWELL SOTHEBY.
TINDAL ROBERTSON.
*B. ST. JOHN ACKERS.
*T. R. ARMITAGE.
WM. A. ARROL.
*F. J. CAMPBELL.
*EDMUND C. JOHNSON.
WILLIAM WOODALL.
*W. BLOMEFIELD SLEIGHT.
*CHARLES MANSFIELD OWEN.
*LIONEL VAN OVEN.
CHARLES EDWARD DRUMMOND BLACK, Secretary.

10th July 1889.

*These Commissioners sign, subject to the reservation or reservations which bear their signatures.




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RESERVATIONS

I have cordially signed the foregoing Report with the following Reservations:-

REPORT ON THE DEAF OF ENGLAND AND WALES

Summary of Recommendations

Para. 3. - It seems unwise to recommend any maximum sum, seeing that the tendency of legislation is to make elementary education increasingly expensive.

Para. 9. - It is impossible for deaf children to have the full benefit of the Pure Oral system if they have at any time been taught on another system, or are allowed to become acquainted with the manual alphabet or system of Signs. (See para. 477 of this Report.)

The recommendation, therefore, in the first sentence of this paragraph cannot be carried out if any deaf children are, as recommended in the second sentence, to be taught at all on any other system than the Pure Oral.

Also, there are not any deaf children "physically or mentally disqualified", and so schools on any other system than the Pure Oral are not required; for it has been abundantly proved in Italy (where the Sign and Manual was first in use, then the Combined, and now for many years past the Pure Oral has prevailed), that the Pure Oral can give a better and more useful education than any other system to all deaf children, of however low a level of intellect, capable of being taught at all on the Sign and Manual, Combined or any other system. (See Tarra Correspondence, in Appendix 34.)

The number of deaf children physically unable to be taught on the Pure Oral system is confined to those who are practically blind. These (see final recommendation of this Report), should not be taught in schools for the deaf. Deaf children who have cleft palates or other serious affections of the vocal organs are very few; and, notwithstanding these defects, are best taught on the Pure Oral system.

For the above reasons we are unable to concur in the second sentence of this paragraph, as it is contrary to experience and sound policy. The latter demands that the State shall see that all deaf children, in schools aided by Government grants, are taught on that system which best fits them to become useful and self-supporting citizens, and tends to diminish congenital deafness.

(Signed)
B. ST. JOHN ACKERS.

I agree with Mr. Ackers's remarks regarding paragraph 9.

(Signed)
LIONEL VAN OVEN.

We agree with the Report as a whole. We believe it is the best compromise that is possible under the circumstances; nevertheless we wish to place on record that a few points are not in accordance with our views.

(Signed)
T. R. ARMITAGE.
F. J. CAMPBELL.


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Whilst signing the report as a compromise on many points of controversy, I wish to record my differing to a certain extent from the conclusions mentioned in paragraphs 252, 255, and 259, relating to Endowments and Pensions for the Blind, and in paragraph 568, concerning the Deaf and Dumb, who receive at the Church and in the Lecture Hall of the Royal Association in aid of the Deaf and Dumb, Oxford Street, London, both religious and secular instruction, and who attend in large numbers, both male and female, the lectures and the services of the Church of England given on the sign and manual system; a result that could not be obtained if similar instruction was attempted to be given to equally large numbers of the Deaf on the pure oral system.

(Signed)
EDMUND C. JOHNSON.

As we adopt and approve the greater part of the Summary of Recommendations with which the foregoing Report concludes, we have subscribed it, but we object to the tone of the Report so far as it deals with the sign and manual method, as we consider it is not borne out by the evidence of those who have had long practical experience in teaching the deaf and dumb. Moreover, the evidence of missionaries in England, who work among the adult deaf and dumb, is that the oral method breaks down in after life, and that its pupils not infrequently resort to writing or the manual alphabet.

From what we ourselves have seen, in visiting the various schools and institutions in the United Kingdom, we are bound to assert that, with few notable exceptions (and those chiefly semi-mute or semi-deaf), the articulation and lip-reading of pupils taught under the pure oral method are so poor as to be practically of little value to them in their intercourse with the general public.

Further, we consider that the Report gives very inadequate expression to the value of the combined method, and on this subject we refer especially to the evidence of Dr. Gallaudet (President of the Deaf-mute College at Washington), which ought to receive the greatest attention considering the high authority from which it emanates. We more particularly refer to Answers 13,139, 13,140, 13,111, 13,427,13,428, 10,444, 13,466, 13,470, 13,474. In one of these he says that, "it is by the practice of the combined system that the greatest advantage to the greatest number may be secured."

We are of opinion that undue weight has been attached to the evidence of Mr. Graham Bell. We yield to none in our high appreciation of that gentleman's great ability and integrity of purpose, but we submit that his conclusions as to methods of education must of necessity be based upon theory rather than experience, as he himself admits that he only had a school for two years, and the number of pupils in it was limited to four. See Answers 21,690 to 21,693.

We regret that more prominence has not been given in the Report to the important evidence of the Right Hon. J. Chamberlain, who, after his visit to the famous institution at Washington, says, in Answer 20,572, "I was quite satisfied with the results I saw, and thinking over it since, I confess I cannot bring myself to believe that the oral system could possibly be satisfactory by itself. I am strongly in favour of the combined system." See also Answers 20,583, 20,585, 20,586, 20,639.

We desire to qualify the following paragraphs in the report.

No. 307. - From our own lifelong experience among the adult deaf and dumb we find that the offspring of those who intermarry are generally hearing and speaking. In support of our statement we would refer to statistics supplied by Mr. Townsend at the end of his evidence, as to the "Intermarriages among the deaf-mutes of Birmingham".

No. 382. - It is here stated that "the sign and manual system specially trains the deaf to communicate and associate with their fellow deaf". We demur to this, as we think it is misleading. The real object sought in sign and manual institutions is not to build up an elaborate and complex system of signs, intelligible only to the deaf and dumb themselves and to their teachers, but to familiarize them with written language in its common colloquial forms, and thus to place them in possession of a ready means of communication with those among whom they may be placed in after life.


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No. 397. - It seems to us unfair to attribute "deaf-mutism" to the use of signs, as it is found that pupils taught on the pure oral method fall into similar inaccuracies. See paper 35 in Appendix by Mr. Williams (Principal of the Connecticut Asylum for Deaf-mutes) handed in by Dr. Gallaudet. (Answer 13,172.)

No. 398. - We consider the "chilblain theory" quite absurd. Deaf and dumb children, taught by the manual method, use their lungs at play; they shout and make all kinds of noises, see Answers 17,055, 17,056, 17,304, 17,305.

No. 400. - We are strongly of opinion that this paragraph and others quoted from the evidence of Dr. Buxton against the sign and manual method, and in favour of the pure oral, must be taken with considerable reserve. We emphatically protest against the sign and manual method being stigmatised as a "cage". With few exceptions the very poor powers of articulation and lip-reading which we have seen in this country possessed by pupils taught under the pure oral method prove that if any pupils are "caged" they truly are, for it is as natural for a deaf and dumb child to sign as it is for a bird to fly. Even in Germany, the home of the oral method, deaf-mutes hold conventions and invariably carry on their discussions by gestures. See Answer 13,464. Moreover, Dr. Buxton explicitly states in his evidence that he had "not taught the oral system so as to acquire the means of giving an opinion of his own". See Answer 9368.

No. 417. - We are of opinion that in the Report an importance has been attached to the Milan Congress which is scarcely warranted by the evidence of Dr. Gallaudet. See especially Answers 13,306, 13,520 to 13,522, 13,528 to 13,530. We would also refer to a similar opinion of the Congress expressed by Dr. Elliott, Head Master of the Margate Institution (himself an advocate of the oral method), in the "American Annals of the Deaf", July 1882.

No. 478. - Germany has never "given the system of signs a fair trial". The first institution ever established in Germany was that at Leipzig, founded by Heinicke in 1778 on the oral method.

No. 502. - We cannot accept the latter part of this paragraph, as we do not think it at all likely that orally-taught pupils could take advantage of the ordinary college education or receive oral teaching from private tutors. See Answers 13,452 to 13,455.

No. 543. - We would recommend that there should be training colleges attached to (say) two of the existing large institutions where both methods of instruction are employed side by side, so that ample opportunity might be afforded for the training of a sufficient number of teachers on either one method or the other. This would carry out the recommendation adopted at a conference of head masters of British institutions, held in 1882.

Nos. 566 and 567. - We do not object to the mixture of the sexes in institutions up to the age of 15 or 16, that is to say, in the schoolroom, and at meal times. On this point we entirely agree with Dr. Gallaudet. See Answer 13,198.

No. 568. - This paragraph seems to us far too sweeping, and is not supported by the evidence of those who have had long experience of the adult deaf and dumb. We think that the deaf and dumb, taught under any system, will always associate with each other, and therefore, we think it desirable that there should be societies, missions, etc. to ensure due regulation and proper control. Besides, we know full well the great benefit of these associations and the inestimable boon they prove to our afflicted fellow creatures.

No. 611. - This paragraph must be taken with considerable reserve. Nothing has shaken us in our opinion that the ability to read the lips with accuracy and facility is so rare that it would be practically impossible to interpret the ordinary sermon or lecture by word of mouth. It is within our own knowledge that orally-taught pupils (after leaving school) attend the services, etc. provided by societies for the adult deaf and dumb conducted purely on the sign and manual method. They do this because they find that the ordinary service is little more than an empty form to them. See Answers 13,351 to 13,353.

SUMMARY OF RECOMMENDATIONS

No. 9. - We cannot accept the paragraph as it stands. What we recommend is this:-

Every child who is deaf should have full opportunity of receiving some instruction on the oral method in all institutions or schools which receive Government grants, on


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whatever method they may be conducted. If a child, after a fair trial, should prove incapable of making satisfactory progress in lip-reading and articulation, he should be educated entirely on the sign and manual method. The institution or school authority should determine by which method the child should be finally educated.

No. 14. - We are strongly of opinion that the Government Inspectors to be appointed hereafter should be men who have had actual and mature experience in the work of deaf-mute instruction. We are quite sure that an ordinary Government Inspector will not be able readily to acquire a sufficient knowledge of the sign and manual method; and to appoint a non-expert would be a great injustice to the very large number of children now in schools or institutions conducted on the manual or combined method. In support of our opinion of the great importance of expert inspection, we would refer to the evidence of Mr. Cumin and Mr. Craik, the secretaries of the English and Scotch Education Departments. See especially Answers 19,603, 19,730, 19,731, 19,741, 19,962, 19,976.

The testimony of Teachers is to the same effect, see Answers 7674, 9,100, 14,685, 15,377, 15,403.

No. 26. - Except in the case of hereditary tendency, we know of very few instances where deaf and dumb parents have deaf and dumb offspring, and therefore we do not share the objection to the intermarriage of the deaf.

(Signed)
CHARLES MANSFIELD OWEN.
W. BLOMEFIELD SLEIGHT.

I have signed the foregoing Reports and Recommendations, which, if not in every respect carrying out my views to the fullest extent, are, in my opinion, well drawn, and likely to prove of great benefit to the classes whose education and welfare this Commission was appointed to investigate and report upon.

I, however, feel it my duty to call attention to paragraphs 295, 308 to 314, and Recommendation 26 of the Report on the Deaf and Dumb, as they lead to the conclusion that the marriage of blood relations is an undoubted cause of deafness in the offspring quite apart from other considerations, and that, therefore, "such marriages should be strongly discouraged".

I have carefully examined the evidence of the various witnesses on this point, and I find that, as a rule, they either rely upon general impression, or upon the fact that they have known a certain number of deaf-mutes whose parents were first or second cousins, without having investigated whether there were any other circumstances, such as deafness in the ancestry or collateral relatives of such parents, and without knowing whether the proportionate number of such cases (viz., marriages of blood relations having deaf offspring) was larger than the proportionate number of such marriages to the general marriages of the district.

I do not deem it desirable, or necessary to argue upon, or refute the evidence of witnesses who base their opinions upon conjecture, though much might be said against the conclusions they arrive at, and in some instances their assertions could be entirely disproved.

There can be no doubt that to a certain extent, in fact to a very considerable extent, the physical and mental conditions of the ancestry are reproduced in the offspring, and hence peculiarities of form and feature, as well as tendency to special kinds of disease, are looked upon as family characteristics, and are no doubt hereditary; consequently it is exceedingly desirable to discourage the marriage of blood relations in whose family there may be an hereditary tendency to the same defect or disease, as such a marriage must of necessity increase the chance of the transmission of such defect or disease to the offspring; and therefore I approve of Cause (I) of paragraph 295, but as regards Cause (II) I consider it can only be said to be a true cause in the case of those families where there has been deafness in the common ancestry, and as in such cases the probability of deafness in the offspring arises from hereditary or family peculiarity, rather than from consanguinity, I would define Cause II thus -

"From the intermarriage of those in whose families a tendency to deafness exists."


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As regards paragraphs 308 to 312, I have carefully examined the returns made by the institutions, and I find that they are so imperfect that no satisfactory statistics can be made from them.

Out of 2,485 cases summarised in paragraph 312, at least 1,477 are in institutions where either no record is kept, or where the record kept is evidently unreliable. For instance, at the Birmingham Institution a record of consanguineous marriage alone is kept. At Margate, we found on visiting the institution, that a large number of the children were the descendants of former inmates, in some cases the third generation, who had been through the asylum (see para. 573), and yet the return first sent to us was that 15 cases were the offspring of cousins, but that there was no instance of any child being the offspring of deaf parents or having deaf relatives. (This statement has, on a second application, been somewhat altered, but had we not called attention to the contradictory information gained on visiting the institution, it would have been deemed correct.)

Again! The returns from the Bristol Institution show the same two children in three different columns, i.e., "parents related", "parents deaf", and "other relatives deaf". Our attention is here drawn to the fact, but I have no doubt that it occurs in many other instances where it is not noticed.

Until more correct records are kept, and the statistics are more carefully compiled, I think that no reliable deductions on this point can be drawn from them.

Mr. George Darwin (see American Annals, vol. 23, pages 145 and 146) gives the percentage of deaf-mutes from consanguineous marriages as not larger (if anything 0.5 per cent less) than the percentage of such marriages.

In paragraph 310, the Irish Census Report of 1881 is quoted. In that same report (page 41) it is stated "that there were -

1 deaf-mute to every 989 of the Roman Catholics,
1 deaf-mute to every 1,020 of the Protestants,
1 deaf-mute to every 1,051 of the Presbyterians,
1 deaf-mute to every 1,480 of the Methodists,"
notwithstanding that the Roman Catholic Church forbids the intermarriage of cousins, while such marriages are allowed by the other denominations.

Hence I cordially agree with Mr. Graham Bell, as quoted in paragraph 313, and cannot approve of paragraph 314 and Recommendation 26 in their present form, but as there can be no doubt of the risk of deaf offspring arising from a consanguineous marriage where deafness has existed in the ancestry or collateral relatives common to both parties, I think -

"That consanguineous marriages should be strongly discouraged where deafness has occurred in the family"; and

"That all marriages, where a decided tendency to deafness has been shown in both families, should be equally discouraged."

And I would make a similar recommendation with respect to "idiocy". As also to "defective sight arising from hereditary disease".

So long as we do not know the proportion of consanguineous to non-consanguineous marriages, we have no possibility of proving whether such marriages produce more than the ordinary proportion of defective children. I therefore recommend -

"That the Census returns should contain a record of consanguineous marriages, and that an investigation should be made as to the number of defective children produced therefrom."

I also recommend -

"That the school statistics recommended in paragraph 575 should carefully note all cases where there may have been deafness in the ancestry or collateral relatives of deaf children whose parents were of near kin."

(Signed)
LIONEL VAN OVEN.

London, 10th July, 1889.