1954 Gurney-Dixon Report (text)
The Gurney-Dixon Report (1954)
A Report of the Central Advisory Council for Education (England)
London: Her Majesty's Stationery Office 1954
In April 1952 Sir Samuel Gurney-Dixon (1878-1970) was appointed one of the first two pro-Chancellors of the new University of Southampton, which had previously been Hartley University College.
Later that year, he was asked by minister of education Florence Horsburgh to chair the Central Advisory Council for Education:
To consider what factors influence the age at which boys and girls leave secondary schools which provide courses beyond the minimum school-leaving age; to what extent it is desirable to increase the proportion of those who remain at school, in particular the proportion of those who remain at school roughly to the age of 18; and what steps should be taken to secure such an increase.The twenty members of the Council submitted their report to Horsburgh in August 1954 but before it was published (in November) she was replaced by David Eccles.
In his Foreword to the report, Eccles sounds less than wholeheartedly supportive of its recommendations. He notes that it 'comes down in favour of putting a higher proportion of our most gifted children into grammar schools' and he comments:
Certainly there are areas where the grammar school provision is too low, and the ablest children are not getting a proper chance. But I am not so sure that there should be an all-round increase in the proportion of grammar school places.
Summary of the report's main recommendations
The report online
The full text of the report (including the Appendices) is presented in a single web page.
I have corrected a handful of printing errors and modernised some of the punctuation. Otherwise the text presented here is exactly as printed.
The tables (and the questionnaire forms in Appendix I) are presented here as images and are embedded in the text where they were in the original.
The above notes were prepared by Derek Gillard and uploaded on 20 April 2011.