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The development of public school kindergartens in British Columbia Weiss, Gillian M. 1979

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THE DEVELOPMENT OF PUBLIC SCHOOL KINDERGARTENS IN BRITISH COLUMBIA by GILLIAN M. WEISS B.A. (Hons) Un i v e r s i t y of Adelaide, 1976 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS in THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES Department of Early Childhood Education We accept t h i s thesis as conforming to the required standards THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA September 1979 (c) G i l l i a n M. Weiss, 1979 I n p r e s e n t i n g t h i s t h e s i s i n p a r t i a l f u l f i l m e n t o f t h e r e q u i r e m e n t s f o r a n a d v a n c e d d e g r e e a t t h e U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a , I a g r e e t h a t t h e L i b r a r y s h a l l make i t f r e e l y a v a i l a b l e f o r r e f e r e n c e a n d s t u d y . I f u r t h e r a g r e e t h a t p e r m i s s i o n f o r e x t e n s i v e c o p y i n g o f t h i s t h e s i s f o r s c h o l a r l y p u r p o s e s may be g r a n t e d by t h e Head o f my D e p a r t m e n t o r by h i s r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s . I t i s u n d e r s t o o d t h a t c o p y i n g o r p u b l i c a t i o n o f t h i s t h e s i s f o r f i n a n c i a l g a i n s h a l l n o t be a l l o w e d w i t h o u t my w r i t t e n p e r m i s s i o n . D e p a r t m e n t o f ^ \ The U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a 2075 W e s b r o o k P l a c e V a n c o u v e r , C a n a d a V6T 1W5 D a t e • E-6 BP 75-51 1 E i i ABSTRACT In 1972, the New Democratic Party government of B r i t i s h Columbia mandated provision of kindergarten classes for c h i l d r e n up to one year younger than the compulsory school attendance age; henceforth any f i v e year old could attend a public school kindergarten. The government considered this move to be a milestone i n B r i t i s h Columbia educational h i s t o r y , but l i k e much s o c i a l l e g i s l a t i o n , i t did l i t t l e more than recognise i n law what was already taking place i n fact. This thesis examines the development of public school kindergartens i n B r i t i s h Columbia, from the opening of the f i r s t classes by the Vancouver School Board i n 1944, to the l e g i s l a t i o n of 1972. It attempts to trace not only the physical establishment of classes, but also to discover the goals and objectives of those who supported the i n c l u s i o n of kindergartens i n the public school system. In order to place B r i t i s h Columbia developments i n in t e r n a t i o n a l perspective i t is necessary to take into account the kindergarten movement throughout the re s t of North America. The f i r s t chapter, therefore, deals with the German origins of the kindergarten i n the f i r s t h a l f of the nineteenth century and the subsequent development of the kindergarten idea i n the United States h a l f a century l a t e r . I t examines the reasons for the enthusiastic acceptance of kindergartens i n the United States as well as the changes that took, place as a r e s u l t of increased research i n areas such as psychology and human development. These changes resulted i n a concept of kindergarten that was quite d i f f e r e n t from the Froebelian o r i g i n a l . The second chapter deals with developments i n B r i t i s h Columbia from i i i the mid 1940's to 1972, examining the war-time conditions that led to the f i r s t serious discussions of the need to provide some sort of f a c i l i t i e s for preschool ch i l d r e n . I t then traces the gradual expansion of kinder-garten classes i n the Vancouver and V i c t o r i a School D i s t r i c t s . These two School Boards i n the province's two largest c i t i e s were for some years alone i n t h e i r concern for provision of kindergarten classes although they had the enthusiastic support of many parents and educators. The Department of Education on the other hand showed a marked lack of inte r e s t i n kinder-garten. The f i n a l chapter i d e n t i f i e s and explores the changing theory of kindergarten education i n B r i t i s h Columbia during the same time period, 1945-1972. This again necessitates some reference to events and contem-porary educational thought throughout North America. I t also requires a re-examination of much of the material used i n the second chapter, for example, the Report of the 1960 Royal Commission on Education, to show why kindergartens were being c a l l e d for by both educators and laymen, what r o l e they were expected to play within the public school system and how that r o l e changed over the years. Two main points a r i s e from the study. F i r s t , the momentum for the establishment of kindergartens came l a r g e l y from those who had the greatest contact with the ch i l d r e n themselves, namely, parents and educators. The school Boards were i n i t i a l l y reluctant to commit themselves although they eventually entered the f i e l d with enthusiasm. The Department of Education and successive L i b e r a l and C o a l i t i o n governments avoided the kindergarten issue as best they could and the eventual l e g i s l a t i o n simply recognised the consensus that had developed. Second, although educators continue to i v t a l k about the importance of freedom i n the kindergarten classroom there has been an increase i n emphasis on beginning formal school work, p a r t i -c u l a r l y pre-reading and w r i t i n g s k i l l s , i n the kindergarten year. The r e s u l t i s an e f f e c t i v e lowering of the age of school entry. V TABLE OF CONTENTS Page ABSTRACT . i i TABLE OF CONTENTS v INTRODUCTION . . . . . 1 CHAPTER I EARLY KINDERGARTEN DEVELOPMENT IN NORTH AMERICA 4 CHAPTER II PUBLIC SCHOOL KINDERGARTEN DEVELOPMENT IN BRITISH COLUMBIA 37 CHAPTER I I I THE DEVELOPMENT OF KINDERGARTEN THEORY IN BRITISH COLUMBIA 73 CONCLUSION 123 BIBLIOGRAPHY 127 APPENDIX . . 135 TABLE 1 KINDERGARTEN AND GRADE 1 ENROLMENT IN VICTORIA AND VANCOUVER 1945-1975 135 TABLE 2 TOTAL KINDERGARTEN ENROLMENT IN BRITISH COLUMBIA 1945-1976 137 1 INTRODUCTION Toronto has the d i s t i n c t i o n of being the second public school system in the world to include kindergartens as an i n t e g r a l part of the educative process. This took place i n 1883, and w i t h i n four years there was provision throughout the province for a l l other School Boards to do likewise. Why, then, was i t nearly ninety years before a s i m i l a r step was taken in B r i t i s h Columbia? In 1972, the New Democratic Party government of B r i t i s h Columbia mandated provision of kindergartens for a l l c h i l d r e n of f i v e years of age, and yet there, had been kindergartens, at l e a s t i n Vancouver and V i c t o r i a , the province's two largest c i t i e s , for nearly, t h i r t y years. Did the l e g i s l a t i o n then have any r e a l impact, or was i t simply a r a t i f i c a t i o n of the status quo? The purpose of this study is to trace the development of public school kindergartens in B r i t i s h Columbia from the establishment of the f i r s t classes in the c l o s i n g years of the Second World War up to 1972. The kindergarten, and the philosophy behind i t , however, had t h e i r o r i g i n s i n the early decades of the l a s t century. By the t i m e t h e f i r s t classes were begun i n B r i t i s h Columbia, both the philosophy and i t s p r a c t i c a l expression, the kindergarten class, had changed considerably. Most of this change and development took place i n the United States, and the study therefore i n i t i a l l y examines the kindergarten in this s e t t i n g . The f i r s t kindergartens i n Vancouver and V i c t o r i a were few i n number and were established on an experimental basis by the two Boards concerned. Although the Department of Education provided some funding, i t showed l i t t l e further i n t e r e s t i n the issue, e i t h e r at that time or for some years to come. However, there was an immediate p o s i t i v e response from many 2 parents and educators and the Boards were unable to provide places for a l l the c h i l d r e n whose parents wanted them, to attend. Indeed, the Boards themselves were often doubtful about the value of kindergartens and the amount of t h e i r l i m i t e d finances that should be expended on them. The study attempts to. i d e n t i f y the various reasons for the enthusiasm, on the one hand, and apparent apathy, on the other hand, that characterized the several sections of the community and the government that were or should have been concerned with t h i s aspect of education. I t also l i n k s the piece-meal development of further classes with these c o n f l i c t i n g a t t i t u d e s . During the 1960's, i n t e r e s t i n early childhood educationsgrew, not only within the province, but throughout North America and the western world. The impact of this renewed int e r e s t , and, more importantly, the research that resulted from i t , was f e l t i n B r i t i s h Columbia and produced an increase i n the rate of establishment of kindergarten classes, both within and without the public school system. There was also a growing consensus that a l l c h i l d r e n should have a year of kindergarten before beginning t h e i r primary schooling. Was t h i s consensus the r e s u l t of the new research or was i t rather a r e s u l t of the fact that more ch i l d r e n were now able to attend classes, making the r e s u l t s of kindergarten more v i s i b l e ? By the end of the decade, although the Department of Education s t i l l showed only a l i m i t e d i n t e r e s t i n this area of education, school boards i n many parts of the province were providing an increasing number of kinder-garten classes for five-year-old c h i l d r e n . The rate of increase was such that by 1972, most five-year-olds i n the province would, i n a l l l i k e l i h o o d , have been able to attend a public school kindergarten, even i f the l e g i s l a -3 t i o n of that year had not been enacted. But was the kindergarten experience offered in the early 1970's the same as that offered i n the f i r s t classes to be established i n the 1940's? Or did the increased in t e r e s t i n early childhood education, the r e s u l t i n g research, and the consensus as to the d e s i r a b i l i t y of the.kindergarten year, a l t e r the classroom atmosphere and objectives? I f so, what was the major agent, of change? Was i t the teachers, the School Boards, the Department of Education? Or were there more general influences? The second inte n t i o n of the study is to examine the theory of kindergarten education i n B r i t i s h Columbia and to attempt to i d e n t i f y any changes i n intent or method that occurred i n the course of the t h i r t y year period from 1944 to 1972. This is not easy, for a m u l t i p l i c i t y of philosophies and objectives may co-exist i n education without n e c e s s a r i l y becoming apparent. An examination of Department of Education publications, l o c a l education journals, and l o c a l and national reports of Committees and Commissions on the question of kindergartens may shed some l i g h t on these problems. F i n a l l y , a comparison with contemporary American'thought and method: w i l l serve to place develop-ments i n B r i t i s h Columbia i n the t o t a l North American context. 4 CHAPTER I EARLY KINDERGARTEN DEVELOPMENT IN NORTH AMERICA Any examination of the development of public school kindergartens i n B r i t i s h Columbia must consider two important factors. F i r s t , some school systems included kindergartens as an in t e g r a l part of the educational process more than a century before B r i t i s h Columbia took this same step. Second, during t h i s century-long period, School D i s t r i c t s i n both the United States and other parts of Canada experimented considerably with the theory and pr a c t i c e of kindergarten education. B r i t i s h Columbia, therefore, was able to adopt a system that had been modified by time and use to the North American.stiuation; t h i s province had the advantage of the experience of other areas that had chosen to use the kindergarten as a part of the educa-t i o n a l system. I t i s therefore necessary to discuss the f i r s t century of kindergarten education i n the wider North American context before the s i t u a -t i o n i n B r i t i s h Columbia can be dealt with. The kindergarten movement i n America rode on the cre s t . o f a wave of enthusiastic humanism in the l a s t two decades of the nineteenth century and the f i r s t two decades of the twentieth century. Educational h i s t o r i a n s have advanced two c o n f l i c t i n g theories to account for the sudden i n t e r e s t of p h i l anthropists, reformers and teachers i n the idea of kindergarten at thi s time. Marvin Lazerson maintains that the upsurge of in t e r e s t and the incorporation of kindergarten classes i n many public schools exemplified the dilemma of urban educational reform.''" He admits that both reformers and philanthropists saw the kindergarten as an innovative-and less harsh educational beginning for the c h i l d r e n of the-wealthy. But he maintains I 5 that these same reformers and philanthropists supported the idea of kinder-garten l a r g e l y as an agent of s o c i a l reform. The kindergarten offered a new way of reaching the poor, of helping them to deal with the problems of rapid urbanization and of bringing some measure of s o c i a l harmony into family l i f e i n the slums. The dilemma that Lazerson i d e n t i f i e s arose when reformers attempted to put t h e i r theory into p r a c t i c e . I f kindergarten was to be of any value as an agent of s o c i a l change, i t was necessary that a large majority of urban c h i l d r e n attended a c l a s s . I t seemed to many of the reformers that the obvious way to reach the majority of c h i l d r e n was to include kindergartens i n the public school system. But the already struggling public schools could r a r e l y a f f o r d the expenditure required for a complete t r a d i t i o n a l kindergarten system. Moreover, this new concept of the-school as an agent of s o c i a l reform extended the school far beyond i t s t r a d i t i o n a l r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s . Though many kindergartens.were opened, l i m i t e d finance prevented the maintenance of small class numbers. Teachers did not have the time to involve themselves i n home v i s i t s and parent education, and some did not consider this work a part of their: p r o f e s s i o n al duties. Public kindergartens became increasingly a downward extension of the primary grades, more concerned with education than with s o c i a l welfare or reform. Lazerson sees t h i s as a f a i l u r e on the part of the reformers to achieve t h e i r goals f u l l y ; even though public school kindergartens pro-l i f e r a t e d i n many parts of America they did not have the far reaching e f f e c t s on society that many of t h e i r supporters envisioned. Unlike Lazerson, Lawrence Cremin and Timothy Smith i d e n t i f y no such 2 dilemma i n the introduction of kindergartens into the school system. Smith sees the reforms of the Progressive era as having a 'creative s o c i a l 6 function 1 rather than a c o n t r o l l i n g s o c i a l function: Cremin i d e n t i f i e s Progressive education as only one strand of the broader programme of s o c i a l and p o l i t i c a l reform which h i s t o r i a n s have l a b e l l e d the Progressive Move-3 ment. .While Cremin and Smith agree that s o c i a l reform was the ultimate goal, both place much more emphasis on the new educational methods that came to be used rather than the goal i t s e l f . The new education was to be 'educa-t i o n for l i f e ' ; a many sided e f f o r t to use the schools to improve the l i f e of the i n d i v i d u a l . Schools were to broaden t h e i r programmes, both i n content and function, and were to centre on the c h i l d himself. The kinder-garten movement, with i t s emphasis on the i n d i v i d u a l c h i l d and learning through doing, f i t t e d admirably with these aims and so became a part of the new educational movement. Lazerson d i f f e r s with Cremin and Smith as to the exact purpose educa-t i o n a l reformers had i n mind when they championed the kindergarten cause. This paper w i l l take a p o s i t i o n that is in l i n e with Cremin and Smith rather than with Lazerson because i t seems to me that those individuals who were involved with the establishment of public school kindergartens were indeed more concerned with educational than with s o c i a l issues. A b r i e f examination of the o r i g i n s of the kindergarten are necessary at this point. F r i e d r i c h Froebel opened the f i r s t kindergarten i n Blankenburg, Germany, i n 1837. He based the curriculum on h i s own meta-physical doctrine of Unity, or what he believed to be the interconnected-ness of a l l things i n l i f e . God, he believed, was the Divine Unity and the source of a l l subsequent unity. Therefore, education, i n the broad sense, must be the process of leading man to an understanding of and conscious 4 appreciation of the p r i n c i p l e of Unity. Froebel saw childhood education 7 as a process of unfolding from wi t h i n of the ch i l d ' s physical, i n t e l l e c t u a l and moral nature through f r e e l y chosen s e l f - a c t i v i t y or play. He wrote: Play i s the purest, most s p i r i t u a l a c t i v i t y of man...and, at the same time, t y p i c a l of. l i f e as a whole - of the inner hidden natural l i f e i n man and a l l things. I t gives, there-fore, joy, freedom, contentment, inner and outer rest, peace • with the world... The plays of childhood are the germinal leaves of a l l l a t e r l i f e ; for the whole man i s developed and shown i n these, i n his tenderest d i s p o s i t i o n s , i n his inner-most tendencies.5 Froebel's system was unique i n two respects: i t emphasized the importance of the years from three to seven i n the educative process, and i t placed the c h i l d himself at the centre of learning rather than r e l y i n g on a content-centred curriculum. The very name 'Kindergarten', which Froebel chose for his school i l l u s t r a t e s h i s b e l i e f that education was akin to c u l t i v a t i n g plants. The kindergartner, as he c a l l e d the teacher, was to provide the proper conditions for the young human plant just as a gardener would provide s u i t a b l e climate and s o i l . But the growth i t s e l f came from within the c h i l d ; i t could not be imposed from without. A s u i t a b l e atmos-phere and freedom for s e l f - d i r e c t e d a c t i v i t y allowed the unfolding of f u l l p o t e n t i a l . His, theory emphasized freedom, but i n fact, much of Froebel's programme was quite r i g i d and adult directed, p a r t i c u l a r l y inrregard to his G i f t s and Occupations, described below. But, with his tortuous philosophy of Unity and his aim of 'rendering the inner outer',- Froebel j u s t i f i e d t h i s i m i t a t i o n 6 and d i r e c t i o n as the c h i l d ' s own cre a t i v e a c t i v i t y . He designed his own teaching equipment with considerable o r i g i n a l i t y but did not allow the same o r i g i n a l i t y to chi l d r e n as they used i t . His G i f t s consisted of s o f t woolen b a l l s , a wooden cube, c y l i n d e r and b a l l , and a series of sets of wooden geometric blocks, which, he argued, a l l expressed his philosophy of 8 Unity and inner connectedness. His instructions for t h e i r use were most specific.'' The geometric wooden blocks, for instance, were to be used only on a tabletop marked o f f in a g r i d of one square inch, on which they were to be placed exactly by the c h i l d i n a series of forms and designs minutely prescribed by Froebel. He expected that c h i l d r e n would learn for them-selves the cosmic truths of his philosophy as they used the equipment. Nevertheless, despite the structured nature of many of h i s a c t i v i t i e s , Froebel's concept of the nature of learning was to have a strong impact on the school systems of North America, where learning was s t i l l commonly under-stood as memorization of facts . I n i t i a l l y , the establishment of kindergartens in the United States was slow, and i t was not u n t i l i n t e r e s t i n them began to blossom there that Canadian educators also began to show an i n t e r e s t . A short review of developments in the United States is therefore i n order. The f i r s t kindergarten i n the United States was opened i n 1856 by Mrs. 8 Margarette Schurtz, in Waterton, Wisconsin. Like a handful of other women who began s i m i l a r enterprises i n the next f i f t e e n years, Mrs. Schurtz had become acquainted with the kindergarten i n Germany and worked p r i v a t e l y i n America for the benefit of her own c h i l d r e n and those of a few friends and neighbours. The kindergartens were conducted i n German and attracted l i t t l e 9 attention outside the communities i n which they were established. While education continued to be understood by a majority of teachers, as no more than i n s t r u c t i o n i n the 3R's, the kindergarten could hope for l i t t l e recognition. But as the early s t i r r i n g s of the Progressive Movement quickened, Froebel's theories roused growing int e r e s t . Perhaps the best known of the early American supporters of the kinder-9 garten were Eliz a b e t h Peabody, Henry Barnard, William T. Harris and Susan Blow. A l l were members of the Concord School of Philosophy, established i n 1879 by Bronson A l c o t t and Ralph Waldo Emerson, and a l l were deeply imbued with the German Idealism which had strongly influenced Froebel. They r e a d i l y i d e n t i f i e d with the philosophical basis of his teachings and although each'was attracted to d i f f e r e n t aspects of his theory, a l l worked to the same end of seeing his p r i n c i p l e s put into p r a c t i c e . Peabody had taught for many years, as a governess, i n her own school and i n Bronson A l c o t t ' s Temple School. In 1860 she read the German e d i t i o n of Froebel's Education of Man (Leipzig, 1826) and immediately opened her own kindergarten."*"^ However, she doubted her a p p l i c a t i o n of some of Froebel's p r i n c i p l e s and so she t r a v e l l e d to Germany to study the kinder-11 garten a t f i r s t hand. On her return shewrote and lectured, p a r t i c u l a r l y i n the kindergarten t r a i n i n g schools that were being established as the demand for more kinder-gartens grew. With f i v e other-women from the Boston area Peabody founded the Boston Froebel Association which l a t e r developed into the American Froebel Association. Many prominent educators, including Barnard, were members and they a c t i v e l y promoted adherence to t h e . l e t t e r of the Froebelian gospel although there were already those'who'were c a l l i n g f o r less dogmatism and more adaptation to the-American s i t u a t i o n . In a l l her a c t i v i t i e s Peabody managed to involve, d i r e c t l y or i n d i r e c t l y , numerous people in the kindergarten cause, by her sheer v i t a l i t y and enthusiasm. One of her early pupils, Lucy Wheelock, who l a t e r became a prominent kindergartner i n her ownright, says of her: "She proclaimed the Gospel of Froebel and had the • s p i r i t of the true missionary. She believed i n this gospel as a means of 10 regenerating humanity, and so a l l her mind, might and strength were dedicated „12 to the cause. Barnard, the f i r s t United States Commissioner of Education, v i s i t e d London, England, i n 1854, and became an enthusiastic supporter of the kindergarten system when he saw the work of Mme. Bertha Ronge, one of Froebel's d i s c i p l e s . In 1890 he assembled a large volume of l i t e r a t u r e on the subject, e n t i t l e d Kindergarten and C h i l d Culture.Papers (Hartford, 1890). I t was the f i r s t p u b l i c a t i o n of any importance i n the English language and 13 did much to spread the kindergarten idea. In his p o s i t i o n as Commissioner of Education, he was i d e a l l y placed to encourage the establishment of kindergartens and this he did, through his writings, correspondence and public speaking. William T. Harris moved from Boston to St. Louis to become Superin-tendent of Public Schools and for several years E l i z a b e t h Peabody corres-ponded with him, urging him to introduce kindergartens into the St. Louis school system. She had attempted t h i s task h e r s e l f in Boston i n 1870 but despite i n i t i a l success, the one public kindergarten closed i n a short time 14 because of lack oftfunds. H a r r i s ' enthusiasm for kindergartens stemmed from his i n t e r e s t i n the concept of s e l f - a c t i v i t y or play as a learning experience, and he-welcomed Froebel's G i f t s and Occupations into the c l a s s -room. Hewas also impressed with the s o c i a l value of kindergarten for c h i l d r e n of both r i c h and poor and saw i t as a t r a n s i t i o n a l step between . 15 home and school. Harris recommended, in 1870, that the St. Louis School Board incorpo-rate kindergarten classes i n i t s schools. But i t was not u n t i l three years l a t e r , when Susan Blow volunteered to superintend a class and i n s t r u c t a 11 teacher, that the. f i r s t class was opened. Blow had become acquainted with the kindergarten while touring Europe i n 1871 and had then studied for a year i n New York with Mme. Maria Kraus-Boelte, a student of Froebel's wxdow. Despite this r e l a t i v e l y early, breakthrough into a public school system, kindergartens were not to be established i n other areas for some years, Toronto was the next school d i s t r i c t to open public kindergartens i n 1883, as a r e s u l t of the zeal and enthusiasm of James L. Hughes and by the end of the century other Boards i n . c i t i e s such as Indianapolis, Boston, Chicago, and Philadelphia i n the> United States, and Toronto,-^Ottawa, Hamilton,.; 18 Fred.eri.ctori and Monet on, i n Canada had -established'.some classes. The l a s t decades of the nineteenth century saw an increasing enthusiasm for kindergartens. North Americans were engaged in an extensive attack on the problems caused by urbanization and i n d u s t r i a l i z a t i o n and kindergarten classes were established as a part of the progressive 1 reform movement. During this period the slow but steady growth of kindergartens in public school systems was outdistanced by the rapid p r o l i f e r a t i o n of p h i l a n t h r o p i -c a l l y established kindergartens. I t i s i n t h i s area that Lazerson's argument about the aims of reformers has most v a l i d i t y . Many avid supporters of the kindergarten were not educators but philanthropists and t h e i r f i r s t concern was for the welfare of the c h i l d r e n of the urban poor. They saw the kindergarten as o f f e r i n g a safe and enriched refuge from the s t r e e t world of the slums; a place where the c h i l d r e n could be washed, fed, given love and d i s c i p l i n e and an educative environment for t h e i r personal develop-ment. At the same time, the kindergarten could reach into the home, and influence family l i f e through the education of the parents, for i n many 12 philanthropic kindergartens, classes were held only i n the mornings, giving 19 kindergartners the afternoons free for home welfare work. In pursuit of this goal, philanthropists began to e s t a b l i s h Kinder-garten Associations in c i t i e s across the United States. One had been organized in Milwaukee as e a r l y as 1870 and two more followed in San Francisco i n 1878 and 1880. By 1897 there were over 400 l i s t e d by the 20 Commissioner of Education. They were c e r t a i n l y concerned with the p o s s i b i l i t i e s for s o c i a l change that could be wrought through the kinder-garten but not, I f e e l , to the extent that.Lazerson maintains. Their aims, i n fact, varied from c i t y to c i t y ; some worked for the incorporation of kindergartens in the public school systems, some co-operated with school a u t h o r i t i e s i n the supervision and maintenance of e x i s t i n g kindergartens; s t i l l others operated independently to supplement public school classes or 21 to provide kindergartens where no public school classes existed. A l l aimed to advance the kindergarten cause and to work with parents i n an e f f o r t to improve home l i f e . This was f e l t to be increasingly necessary i f children, the hope of the future, were to be started on the correct path i n l i f e . By the 1890's kindergarten was by no means an accepted part of the public school system, but nevertheless, i t had s u f f i c i e n t support to make i t a legitimate force on the t o t a l educational scene. I t was already d i f f e r e n t to a c e r t a i n extent from the o r i g i n a l small kindergarten i n Blankenburg; no system can be transplanted intact through time and space. Moreover, the sheer s i z e of the movement i n the United States, i n compari-son to Froebel's one small class must have led to further differences. But more and greater changes were to come. The f i r s t of these was 13 concerned with-the theory and prac t i c e of learning i n the kindergarten. It struck r i g h t at the heart of Froebelian philosophy and had an equally profound e f f e c t on the character of the kindergarten c l a s s . The e a r l i e s t kindergartners i n the United States, women l i k e Margarette Schurtz, trained i n Germany with Froebel, or, a f t e r his death, with h i s disciples,- who continued to adhere to his mystical r e l i g i o u s philosophy and to follow his methods c l o s e l y . But by the turn of the century, a new generation of kindergartners had ar i s e n who had neither the close German connections nor the philosophical background to accept Froebel's p r i n c i p l e s unquestioningly. Rather, they began to c r i t i c i z e the formality of the Froebelian programme, to r e j e c t the p r i n c i p l e s on which i t was based and to experiment with new equipment and a freer programme. As early as 1890, Anna E. Bryan, a graduate of the Chicago Free Kindergarten Association, questioned the b l i n d acceptance of Froebelian p r i n c i p l e s i n a speech to the National Education Association. Although trained i n Froebelian method, she had always encouraged experimentation 22 with both method and materials i n her teacher t r a i n i n g classes. One of her f i r s t student teachers was Patty Smith H i l l who was.to become one of the leading advocates of the reformed kindergarten programme; one of the progressives. The progressives' main objections to Froebel revolved around his symbolism and the lack of s e l f determined purpose i n the kinder-23 garten c h i l d ' s play. One of the major changes was to allow the c h i l d to play f r e e l y with the wooden blocks rather than following Froebel's pre-scribed sequences. Later they replaced these tiny, blocks with larger ones more suited to the physical c a p a b i l i t i e s of the young c h i l d . The attempts of individuals to reform the kindergarten programme was 14 aided tremendoubly by changes i n educational thought that were taking place at 7 the turn of the century. The c h i l d study work of G. Stanley H a l l and John Dewey was p a r t i c u l a r l y i n f l u e n t i a l . In complete contrast with the fixed b e l i e f s of Froebelian philosophy, H a l l and Dewey sought for a more s c i e n t i f i c basis on which to place t h e i r observations and analysis of c h i l d behaviour. Through the nationwide surveys that H a l l conducted, he drew att e n t i o n to such previously unstudied c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s as fear, anger and types of play. Much of the data used i n his book The Contents of Children's Minds (1907) were c o l l e c t e d with the help of teachers in Boston kindergartens.. The r e s u l t of this new close observation of the c h i l d ' s physical and psychological development, rather than the Froebelian concentration on the moral and s p i r i t u a l , led to the use of larger equipment and freedom for large bold movement. Dewey included a pre-primary class i n h i s laboratory school at the U n i v e r s i t y of Chicago i n 1896. His f u n c t i o n a l i s t philosophy c a l l e d for education to d i r e c t the c h i l d ' s play toward e f f e c t i v e s o c i a l l i v i n g , not through symbol-and imitation, but by r e a l l i f e experiences that were as s t r a i g h t forward as possible. 'Constructive' work, i n the context of r e a l l i f e experience was, he f e l t , of utmost value to the c h i l d . By these means the c h i l d could learn to think by managing experience and 24 developing the a b i l i t y to cope with new knowledge and s i t u a t i o n s . In 1892, during a meeting of the National Education Association, the formation of an independent kindergarten organization was proposed, as NEA meetings allowed too l i t t l e time for discussion of kindergarten sub-25° j e c t s . Thus the International Kindergarten Union was formed. For several years i t had l i t t l e impact but a f t e r 1897 i t s Convention programmes 15 began to include problems of everyday practice, and i n t e r e s t grew rap i d l y . Membership increased even more sharply when the subject of changing the t r a d i t i o n a l Froebelian curriculum was raised. By 1900 i t had s i x t y - f i v e branches and 6,225 members and by 1918 i t was considered the t h i r d largest 26 educational body i n the world, with 132 branches and 18,000 members. It i s not s u r p r i s i n g that the more conservative members, s t i l l deeply infused with Froebel's symbolic and s p i r i t u a l philosophies, should be suspicious of and antagonistic to the new ideas. Some of the most b i t t e r c r i t i c i s m of the progressive viewpoint came from the old generation of Froebelians including Harris and Susan Blow, who remained f a i t h f u l to the gospel they had preached for so long. The two points of view, based, as they were, on widely d i f f e r i n g philosophical bases, were i r r e c o n c i l a b l e . A r i f t developedv:.within the IKU that was to be of v i t a l importance to the future of kindergartens; the progressives continued to move with the mainstream of educational theory, advocating continuing experimentation and the need for more freedom of choice for the c h i l d . The conservatives were increasingly forced into the background, although to the end of her days Susan Blow maintained her f a i t h i n Froebel 1s. d e t a i l e d prescriptions 27 and was sure that these would eventually triumph. Despite the importance of the s p l i t i t appears to have been glossed over by many of those involved as well as more recent writers. Patty Smith H i l l , one of the. main protagonists, wrote several decades a f t e r the event: These opposing views led to wholesale c r i t i c i s m , and a f r i e n d l y but s t i f f b a t t l e l a s t i n g from 1890 or 1895 to 1910. The controversy f i n a l l y culminated in a happy adjustment with a truce c a l l e d . From this time forward both groups united i n studying under the d i r e c t i o n of a l l recognised leaders who could illuminate t h e i r common, problems and enable them to i n i t i a t e a more s c i e n t i f i c program for young children.28 16 Perhaps this was said with the modesty of the v i c t o r , or perhaps there was a desire to minimize personal antipathies in what was a reasonably close-knit group, but there can be no doubt that for f i f t e e n years or so the b a t t l e was b i t t e r and the s p l i t i r r e c o n c i l a b l e . A Committee of Nineteen was formed by the IKU i n 1903, for the. purpose of c l a r i f y i n g both of the viewpoints within the Association, i n the hope that a united front could be maintained. But a f t e r ten years of meetings and discussion the committee found i t necessary to produce not one but three reports to cover a l l points of view. The f i r s t was.strongly i n -fluenced by Susan Blow and was l a b e l l e d 'conservative', the second was sponsored by E l i z a b e t h Harrison and was c a l l e d 'conservative-liberal'.and the t h i r d , supported by Patty. Smith H i l l , was • i l i b e r a l 1 . Even at t h i s stage an attempt was made to brush aside the importance of the disagree-ment. The introduction to the report stated: While d i v e r s i t y of opinion undoubtedly existed, there was evident a unity of s p i r i t and a common desire to reach the best and see the best in the work of others. Lazerson and Evelyn Weber both recognize that the differences of opinion within the IKU at this time were i r r e c o n c i l a b l e , but more recently Elizabeth Ross has attempted to minimize them by pointing to s i m i l a r i t i e s 30 that she feels are more important. Certainly, both groups used terms l i k e ' s e l f - a c t i v i t y ' , 'self-expression', 'development from simple to 'complex' and 'development of the whole c h i l d 1 but t h e i r understanding and i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of the terms were very d i f f e r e n t . The kindergarten movement owed i t s beginnings very much to Froebel and his philosophy but a f t e r the f i r s t decade of the twentieth century very l i t t l e of h i s p r a c t i c a l teachings survived. Changing s o c i a l conditions and 17 a rapid increase i n s c i e n t i f i c knowledge brought about the f i r s t r a d i c a l change in the kindergarten; i n the new century i t was only the name that remained unchanged. A second important influence i n changing the o r i g i n a l concept of kindergarten came-with i t s incorporation into a number of public school systems. In the 1880's, many teachers and reformers perceived kindergarten as a valuable agent of s o c i a l reform and they worked, not only for the establishment of philanthropic kindergartens, but f o r the incorporation of classes i n the public schools so that as many chi l d r e n as possible might receive i t s perceived benefits. The decade 1890-1900 saw much growth in this d i r e c t i o n and expansion continued at a slower rate i n the following ten years. Two factors impeded progress even amongst those who were convinced of the d e s i r a b i l i t y of kindergarten classes. One was the problem of using public school funds for c h i l d r e n who were below the state age for 31 school entry, and the second was simply a general lack of funds. The o r i g i n a l Froebelian kindergarten class dismissed at mid-day, leaving the kindergartner with, plenty of time to v i s i t homes and work with parents. Some of the philanthropic kindergartens had also managed to operate in this way. But to run half-day classes with a small pupil-teacher r a t i o was economically impossible i n the public school systems. Class numbers i n -creased to f o r t y or even f i f t y c h i l d r e n and.teachers were expected to take two sessions per day, a requirement that e f f e c t i v e l y ended t h e i r home v i s i t s and welfare work. Consequently, t h e i r emphasis came to be on the c h i l d i n 32 school rather than i n h i s t o t a l environment. But while the public school changed the kindergarten, the kindergarten also changed the public school to some extent. Its influence was f e l t even 18 i n schools that did not have kindergarten classes as well as in the higher grades, where kindergarten songs, books, construction a c t i v i t i e s , plants, 33 and pictures began to appear. And no longer were the benefits of kinder-garten perceived as being s o l e l y for the poor. Middle and upper class c h i l d r e n were now seen as having as much r i g h t to the educational and moral foundation that kindergarten provided. Supporters of the kindergarten believed that classes would both prepare c h i l d r e n for t h e i r future l i v e s , and, more immediately, serve as preparation for and introduction to the 34 primary grades. The organization of kindergarten departments i n state and c i t y Normal Schools also indicated the wide acceptance of kindergar-35 ten. Thus, kindergarten came to be seen as the f i r s t step i n the educa-t i o n a l process for a l l and an increasing number of c h i l d r e n were given the chance to attend. Ross c i t e s a t o t a l of 900 c i t i e s i n the United States i n 1912with altogether 6400 kindergartens and 312,000 ch i l d r e n enrolled. This accounts for 85 per cent.of kindergartens. The remaining 15 per cent were 36 run by private or philanthropic bodies. In the 1920's, research into c h i l d development, parent education, curriculum and method led to the b i r t h of the American nursery school move-ment, based on the work of the McMillan s i s t e r s i n England. In t h e i r Deptford School C l i n i c i n 1909, they began to provide an environment that catered not only for the c h i l d ' s i n t e l l e c t u a l , development but also for his emotional and physical growth. A b i g a i l E l i o t , a student from R a d c l i f f e , worked with the McMillan s i s t e r s i n t h e i r nursery school and in the same period Edna Noble White, a s o c i a l worker,. v i s i t e d the school to observe the programme. E l i o t is credited with opening the f i r s t nursery school i n the United States, the 19 Ruggles Street Nursery, i n Boston, i n January 1922. Later i n the same month White returned to Detroit where she established the nursery programme at 37 the Merril-Palmer School. Nursery schools were soon established as part of research centres at many North American u n i v e r s i t i e s and teachers' colleges. Along with c h i l d development research came a renewed i n t e r e s t i n parent education which many educators saw as necessary for the well-being of the whole c h i l d . The s i m i l a r i t y to the aims of the early kindergarten settlement workers in t h e i r attempts to reach parents, however, i s more apparent than r e a l . They worked through the c h i l d to improve the home, whereas the nursery schools worked through the home to reach the c h i l d . Moreover, the parents of c h i l d -ren i n nursery school were inv a r i a b l y middle or upper c l a s s . They saw t h e i r parenting r o l e almost as a profession and sought to increase t h e i r s k i l l s . The nursery schools were welcomed by kindergarten teachers because the age of kindergarten attendance had increasingly, r i s e n as classes became a part of the public school system and fewer and fewer under-fives were being 3 8 accepted. Nursery schools catered for the- lower age groups with c h i l d r e n as young as eighteen months being accepted. With the onset of the Depression i n 1929 kindergartens entered a period of stagnation that was to continue u n t i l well into the 1950's. Then increasing affluence and the sheer weight of numbers of the pre-school population once more brought the problem of early childhood education to public notice. Weber i d e n t i f i e s two reasons for the h a l t i n development. F i r s t , the kindergarten was caught between the obvious benefits of the research programmes being conducted with the younger age groups i n the nursery schools, and the academic achievements of c h i l d r e n i n the primary grades. Kindergarten was the no-mans land i n between. Kindergarten 20 supporters f e l t that t h e i r task was, worthwhile, but t h e i r aims, and more importantly, t h e i r r e s u l t s , became less and less obvious to the public. Second, many kindergartens were faced with budgetary cutbacks that threatened t h e i r very existence. Weber pinpoints 1930 as being the high point in public school kindergarten enrolment with almost 750,000 c h i l d r e n attending American public kindergartens. Within a few years the number 39 had dropped to 600,000. Dolores Durkin includes a chapter -on the h i s t o r y of kindergarten i n her book Teaching Young Children to Read, and suggests a cause for the separation that existed between the kindergarten and the primary grades. She maintains that i t was a r e s u l t of the type of research undertaken. In the kindergarten i t remained concerned only with c h i l d development while i n the higher grades i t dealt c h i e f l y with learning s k i l l s . Some resear-chers suggested that c h i l d development research could p r o f i t a b l y be ex-tended to the older age group but there appears to have been no thought of extending learning s k i l l s research to the younger chil d r e n . Durkin further suggests that t h i s was the result of kindergarten teachers' s a t i s f a c t i o n with the status quo, basing her suggestion on the. lack of s e l f - c r i t i c i s m 40 i n kindergarten publications of the period 1930-1950. Meanwhile, nursery schools f l o u r i s h e d through federal funding during the depression years as the government attempted to r e l i e v e the e f f e c t s of poverty on the pre-school c h i l d . Many of the adults working i n day-care nursery schools were employed through funding from the Works Progress Administration, a scheme designed s p e c i f i c a l l y to provide jobs rather than competent teachers. This lack of trained s t a f f tended to separate nursery and day-care even further from the educational system but i t did provide 21 care for thousands o f c h i l d r e n between 1933 and 1942. Under the-Lanham A c t , passed by the U n i t e d Sta tes Congress i n 1940, nurse ry schools were a l s o e s t a b l i s h e d fo r the c h i l d r e n o f n e a r l y o n e - t h i r d o f Amer i ca ' s women who 41 were engaged i n war work. Day-care f a c i l i t i e s were by no means newcomers to the scene du r ing the depress ion , but t h e i r sudden p r o l i f e r a t i o n made them more v i s i b l e . I t i s not always p o s s i b l e to d i s t i n g u i s h any d i f f e r e n c e between day-care and nursery s choo l s . D u r k i n and Osborn both suggest tha t day-care wasvasso-c i a t e d w i t h young c h i l d r e n whose parents worked or were too poor to p rov ide adequately for them, w h i l e the term 'nur se ry s c h o o l ' was reserved fo r p ro-grammes begun by p r o f e s s i o n a l educators or researchers for t h e i r own, or 42 other middle c l a s s c h i l d r e n . C e r t a i n l y , a r esea rch programme would d i s -t i n g u i s h a nursery school from a day-care cen t r e , but many o f the nurse ry schools tha t came i n t o be ing du r ing the depres s ion , and l a t e r du r ing World W a r - I I , probably d i f f e r e d l i t t l e from day-care cen t r e s . T h i s , then, was the development o f k i n d e r g a r t e n and e a r l y ch i l dhood educa t ion i n the f i r s t seventy years of t h e i r e x i s t e n c e i n the U n i t e d S t a t e s . But what of Canada? Were there p a r a l l e l s or d i d the movement.follow a d i f f e r e n t path? In f a c t , the path was q u i t e d i f f e r e n t . Wi th the excep t ion o f O n t a r i o , l i t t l e i n t e r e s t i n the k i n d e r g a r t e n was shown i n Canada u n t i l w e l l i n t o the twen t i e th cen tury . O n t a r i o , however, embraced the idea o f k i n d e r g a r t e n wholehear ted ly as a par t o f the schoo l system. The c i t y of Toronto has the d i s t i n c t i o n of be ing the second p u b l i c school system i n t h e w o r l d to i nc lude k inderga r t ens as an i n t e g r a l pa r t o f the programme. This was accomplished i n 1883 a f t e r n e a r l y a decade o f campaigning by James L . Hughes, Inspec tor o f Schools for the Toronto School 22 Board. In 1874, the f i r s t year of his appointment as Inspector, Hughes v i s i t e d Boston and came into contact for the f i r s t time with kindergartens and Froebel's philosophy. He was s u f f i c i e n t l y impressed to begin reading both Froebel's own writings and that of contemporary Americans. Two years l a t e r , returning from the Centennial display i n Philadelphia, he met Marie Kraus-Boelte and, with a view to opening a private kindergarten i n Toronto, he asked her to recommend a kindergartener. She suggested Ada Marean, one of her own students and i n 1878 Ada moved to Toronto and opened a private 43 kindergarten. Hughes continued to crusade vigorously, v i s i t i n g Susan Blow's kinder-44 garten i n St. Louis and arranging for her to speak i n Toronto. As a r e s u l t , the f i r s t public school kindergarten i n Canada was opened at Louisa Street Public School i n inner Toronto, in January 1883 with Ada Marean as Director. Seventy c h i l d r e n were enrolled and Miss Marean was a s s i s t e d by seven unpaid student teachers whom she began t r a i n i n g i n Froebelian method. A class for mothers was also begun but there is no evidence to suggest 45 that any further work was done with fami l i e s . Thus, i n Toronto, the kindergarten moved d i r e c t l y into the more impersonal s e t t i n g of the public school, without f i r s t passing through the stage of a philanthropic welfare organization. In 1888, Hughes-and Ada Marean were married and both continued to work i n the kindergarten f i e l d ; Hughes i n a public capacity, through his p o s i t i o n as Inspector and through his w r i t i n g and public speaking, and Ada in 46 teacher t r a i n i n g . Both retained very close t i e s with the kindergarten-movement in the United States. Ada founded the Toronto Kindergarten 23 Association i n 1892 and was a planner and charter member of the kindergarten section of the Ontario Education Association. She was also a charter member of the American based International Kindergarten Union, i t s President i n 1906 47 and a member of the conservative f a c t i o n of the Committee of Nineteen. By 1887 the kindergarten was formally accepted throughout Ontario. The Education Act of that year provided for the organization of classes, t r a i n -ing of teachers and a system of grants for those Boards who wished to adopt the system. P r o v i s i o n of classes was not mandatory, but expansion of kinder-gartens was quite rapid i n the larger urban areas, p a r t i c u l a r l y Toronto and Ottawa. By 1900 there were 166 kindergartens i n Ontario, attended by 11,000 48 49 children. Four years l a t e r 7 8 out of 88 schools i n Toronto had classes. No other province adopted kindergartens with the enthusiasm of Ontario. New Brunswick had several classes i n Saint-John, Fredericton, and Moncton by 1898, and Nova Scotia established a class i n conjunction with i t s Normal College i n 1891."^ But these did not become a permanent part of the education system. Lethbridge, Alberta also experimented with kindergartens in the early part of the century but did not p e r s i s t . " ^ The Montreal Protestant School Board began a li m i t e d programme i n 1892 52 and Regina followed i n 1900. Some classes appear to have been conducted i n both Montreal and Regina r i g h t up to the present, time. Manitoba does not appear to have had any early public kindergartens but a Free Kindergarten Association and kindergarten class-were begun i n 1892. In 1904, i t was s t i l l 53 in operation and a second was run i n Winnipeg by the A l l Peoples Mission. In B r i t i s h Columbia, there was l i t t l e a c t i o n taken i n regard to the establishment of kindergartens i n the l a s t two decades of the nineteenth century and the f i r s t two decades of the twentieth century. The reason 24 for t his is not easy to pinpoint but i t was c e r t a i n l y not through lack of knowledge of the kindergarten, i t s aims and i t s p o s s i b i l i t i e s . At this time there was an increase i n professional awareness amongst teachers throughout the whole of Canada with both l o c a l teachers Associations being formed as well as a national group, the Dominion Education Association. The f i r s t Convention of this group was held i n Toronto i n 1892 and the suggestion was made that kindergartens be established as a part of the 54 education system of each province. B r i t i s h Columbian attendance at th i s Convention was meagre, idue probably to the distance involved. Further Conventions were held at two or three yearly in t e r v a l s and, depending on the distance of the host c i t y from B r i t i s h Columbia, representation from this province either decreased or increased. Regardless of the number of rank and f i l e teachers at the meetings there was always representation from the administrative side of the school systems for the P r o v i n c i a l Ministers and Superintendents of Education both supported the Association and assumed r e s p o n s i b i l i t y for i t s organization.^^ From the f i r s t Convention i n 1892 a kindergarten section was included in the Elementary Department but by the 1901 Convention i n Ottawa a separate Kindergarten Department had been created and papers were presented on several kindergarten-related topics. Miss M. Maclntyre, of Toronto Normal School Kindergarten for instance, spoke about Chicago Kindergartens, p a r t i c u l a r l y those attached to Dewey's school. Two of the Association Directors elected by the Kindergarten Department i n 1901 were a Miss C. 56 Newman and a Miss Campbell, both of Vancouver. The former was most probably the same Miss Newman who ran a private kindergarten i n Vancouver but no further information i s a v a i l a b l e on the l a t t e r . ^ At the next two 25 Conventions, i n Winnipeg i n 1904 and Toronto i n 1907, a separate kinder-garten department was maintained, though few delegates from B r i t i s h Columbia , ,. 58 attended. The Seventh Convetion was held i n V i c t o r i a , B r i t i s h Columbia, i n 1909. It was the biggest and best organized meeting of the DEA to that date, • with over 350 l o c a l delegates, as w e l l as representatives from a l l the provinces 59 and several from the United States. James L. Hughes was one of the guest speakers, but his paper, "Modern Tendencies i n Education", was very b r i e f 60 and general i n character. His emphasis was on the necessity for a c t i v i t y i n education. • "Doing," he said,, " i s coming to be recognized as an agency 61 for the development of powers, and power is greater than mere le a r n i n g . " However, he made no s p e c i f i c mentionaof the kindergarten. The V i c t o r i a Convention departed from what had become the norm i n that i t had no Kindergarten Department. In fact, there i s no mention of kinder-garten i n the entire Proceedings of the Conference. This cannot have been for lack of knowledge, for Alexander Robinson, Superintendent of Education for B r i t i s h Columbia had served i n several d i f f e r e n t capacities on the Executive since the establishment of the DEA, and several other Education Department and School Board o f f i c i a l s had also held o f f i c e on various 62 occasions. Nor can lack of expertise be the reason, for even i f there was no one i n B r i t i s h Columbia q u a l i f i e d to present a paper, on a kindergar-ten subject, there were many kindergartners i n the eastern provinces or in the United States who could have done so. The reason must l i e i n the fact that there was simply not enough in t e r e s t i n the subject both amongst those organizing the programme and, presumably, amongst the l o c a l teachers them-selves . 26 And ye t some i n t e r e s t c e r t a i n l y d i d e x i s t . As e a r l y as 1895, A . N . S c a r f e , the e d i t o r of The P r o v i n c e newspaper, wrote to the On ta r io M i n i s t e r o f Educa t ion , r eques t i ng copies o f the Department o f Educa t ion Annual Report fo r the years 1891-1894, because much . i n t e r e s t has been evinced l a t e l y i n the ques t ion o f k indergar tens and I am des i rous o f be ing f u l l y posted i n the mat ter .and knowing how i t has worked i n your P r o v i n c e , the acknowledged leader i n educa t iona l matters on t h i s con t inen t . 63 None of the apparent ' i n t e r e s t ' , however, is•shown i n i ssues o f the paper a t that t ime. The expansion o f k indergar tens i n America g e n e r a l l y fo l l owed the p a t t e r n o f l i m i t e d numbers o f c l a s se s for the c h i l d r e n of the wea l thy , p h i l a n t h r o p i c a l l y p rov ided c l a s se s for the c h i l d r e n of the poor and f i n a l l y , i n c l u s i o n of k indergar tens i n p u b l i c s choo l systems as a p re -pr imary exper ience for a l l c h i l d r e n . In B r i t i s h Columbia, l i t t l e evidence remains as to the ex i s t ence o f e a r l y k i n d e r g a r t e n s , l e t a lone t o w h i c h c h i l d r e n they se rved . One o f the f i r s t appears to have been opened by . . M i l e . M a r i e - L o u i s e Kern ( l a t e r Mrs . M e l v i l l e Thomson) on West Georgia S t r e e t , Vancouver, i n 1894. . M i l e . Kern l a t e r ran a board ing school for g i r l s a t Bute and Haro, and i t seems reasonable to assume that the k i n d e r g a r t e n , l i k e the s c h o o l , was for c h i l d -64 ren of the w e l l - t o - d o . Another k i n d e r g a r t e n was run by Miss C. Newman i n the P r e s b y t e r i a n 65 Church on Oppenheimer S t r e e t (now Cordova) du r ing the same p e r i o d . Mis s Newman had t r a i n e d a t one o f the eas te rn Canadian k i n d e r g a r t e n schools and from her d e s c r i p t i o n o f her work i t appears to have been t r a d i t i o n a l l y 66 F r o e b e l i a n . Four years l a t e r , i n 1897, she was forced to c l o s e ' th rough 27 l a c k of s u p p o r t 1 . T h i r t y c h i l d r e n were e n r o l l e d but t h i s was not a s u f f i c i e n t number to make the schoo l a f i n a n c i a l success . The students p a i d fees and most l i k e l y came from middle and uppe r -c l a s s homes as d i d M i l e . K e r n ' s s tudents . This assumption i s supported by the f a c t that Alderman Townley 's c h i l d r e n were a l l past s tudents . A t the c l o s i n g exer-c i s e s , Miss Newman s t a t e d that i t was. " w i t h deep r eg re t tha t she had decided on t h i s course , but fo r four years the schoo l had been conducted a t a l o s s and. she d i d not f e e l ab l e to cont inue i t any l o n g e r . " The Rev. L . N . Tucker , o f Oppenheimer P r e s b y t e r i a n Church, c a l l e d for a u n i t e d e f f o r t to be made "by the c i t i z e n s " so that the schoo l migh t -con t inue . Present a l s o was Alderman McQueen,-who recommended that an e f f o r t be made to amalga-mate, the k i n d e r g a r t e n w i t h the p u b l i c schools "as a pr imary c l a s s " . Dr . McGuigan, a member o f the Vancouver School Board, endorsed the p roposa l but exp l a ined that no l e g i s l a t i o n e x i s t e d whereby t h i s c o u l d be accompl ished . He p e r s o n a l l y b e l i e v e d , however, i n the method o f t each ing 67 adopted by the k inde rga r t ens . A p u b l i c meeting.was h e l d i n the f o l l o w i n g January a t which McQueen^ Townley and Tucker pledged themselves to promote the k i n d e r g a r t e n to the p u b l i c i n the hope that the f i f t y c h i l d r e n needed fo r a s u c c e s s f u l c l a s s would be found. Mr. T . E . Knapp, teacher o f the pr imary c l a s s a t the West End P u b l i c S c h o o l , t c w h i c h many o f the c h i l d r e n progressed, a l s o supported 68 the k inde rga r t en work as an e x c e l l e n t p r e p a r a t i o n for formal s c h o o l i n g . A t the next School Board meeting, i n February 1898, Tucker and McQueen were p r e s e n t . t o persuade the Board to ask for an amendment to the School A c t "so as to permit any c i t y which so de s i r e s the p r i v i l e g e to adopt 69 k i n d e r g a r t e n work i n connec t ion w i t h the P u b l i c S c h o o l s . " A t the same 28 meeting i t was agreed that Miss Newman be allowed to rent a spare room i n the Burrard Street School building, so that she could continue holding her kindergarten classes but no further mention of her-work is to be found. The Vancouver School Board subsequently appointed a deputation to wait upon the M i n i s t e r of Education, the Hon. James Baker, concerning kinder-70 garten and other matters. His reply was t y p i c a l of a l l those to be given by successive Ministers of Education, r i g h t up u n t i l 1972, whenever the government was asked to a s s i s t i n e s t a b l i s h i n g or expanding kindergarten classes w i t h i n the various School D i s t r i c t s that wanted to provide them. He > said: I h e a r t i l y a g r e e w i t h your statement that the kindergarten system is acknowledged to be an excellent preparation course for the younger chil d r e n . Its introduction into our school system would i n my opinion be a very desirable step forward, but such a c t i o n must ne c e s s a r i l y depend upon the a b i l i t y of the Province to meet the extra expense entailed by i t s introduction. At the present time the cost of education i s such a heavy burden on the revenues that i t is not deemed advisable to expand the system i n the d i r e c t i o n named.71 The issue of kindergartens i n public schools was not.to be r a i s e d again for nearly a quarter of a century. During t h i s time, however, two a l l i e d topics were very much i n the minds of B r i t i s h Columbia educators; manual t r a i n i n g and school»playgrounds. Both of these aspects of c h i l d l i f e and education were i n t e g r a l parts of progressive education. Manual t r a i n i n g , which had no immediate voca-t i o n a l goal, appeared as arts and c r a f t s i n the lower grades and developed into the study and p r a c t i c e of carpentry, metal and machine work, sewing, cooking, and drawing i n the higher grades. The playground movement, which likewise had no immediate connection with school work, developed too as an aspect of the education of the 'whole' c h i l d rather than just of h i s mind. 29 In t h i s sense they were very c l o s e l y a l l i e d w i t h the idea of k i n d e r g a r t e n . Many educators who advocated reform i n one p a r t i c u l a r area a l s o supported the o the r s . James L . Hughes:was one of these. He b e l i e v e d tha t the c o n s t r u c t i o n work of k i n d e r g a r t e n began the development o f manual s k i l l s which should be cont inued and expanded i n the elementary grades, c l i m a x i n g i n the more formal s k i l l s l ea rned i n the manual t r a i n i n g c l a s s e s . Not a l l supporters of manual t r a i n i n g , however, wanted to see i t extended downwards i n t o the pr imary grades. The g rea tes t expansion o f manual t r a i n i n g i n Canada came through the Macdonald-Robertson scheme, whereby school d i s t r i c t s were p rov ided , f ree of charge, w i t h workshops, equipment and t r a i n e d teachers for a p e r i o d of three years , a f t e r w h i c h they cou ld con t inue w i t h t h e i r own f inance or drop the scheme. I n t h i s way the f i r s t manual t r a i n i n g c l a s se s i n B r i t i s h Columbia were e s t a b l i s h e d i n V i c t o r i a and Vancouver i n 1900. There were many, both educators and laymen, who'were s k e p t i c a l about the va lue of and need fo r such a programme, but no a c t i v e o p p o s i t i o n . At the end of the three years both c i t i e s cont inued the c l a s se s and Vancouver extended i t s programme. For two years the e n t i r e cos t was borne by the two School Boards u n t i l the Department o f Educa t ion stepped i n and a s s i s t e d by paying 72 the s a l a r i e s o f the two i n s t r u c t o r s . In 1906 a Manual T r a i n i n g School was opened i n New Westminster . Th i s was not a pa r t of the .Macdonald-Robertson scheme, but was funded i n f u l l by the School Board, which c la imed i t was the f i r s t l o c a l l y funded Manual 73 T r a i n i n g School i n Canada. By 1910, there were seventeen cent res i n B r i t i s h Columbia, i n V i c t o r i a , Vancouver, New Westminster and Ne l son . I n h i s r epo r t fo r tha t year , Inspec tor H . Dunne l l c a l l e d for the t each ing of 30 handwork, as a preparation for manual t r a i n i n g , from the primary grades onward. Thework, he said, "should have a progressive•character, s t a r t i n g with paper f o l d i n g and cutting, and leading on through clay modelling, 74 paper and cardboard modelling to woodwork and metal work." The value of play and a c t i v i t y i n the learning process was f u l l y r e a l i s e d by some educators but was not r e a d i l y incorporated into actual school time. However, i n 1908 a l l playgrounds i n Vancouver schools were thrown open to both c h i l d r e n and adults a f t e r school hours and 'competent' 75 persons placed i n charge, of each ground to supervise a c t i v i t i e s . Each school was provided with equipment for basketball, f o o t b a l l , baseball and lacrosse, and i n a few schools simple outdoor gymnasia-were constructed. A l l c h i l d r e n were encouraged to take part i n supervised play. For a time, response was good but the perennial problem, lack of. money, closed the programme, on the eve of the F i r s t World. War.^ Despite the i n t e r e s t i n these two areas education.authorities showed no further i n t e r e s t i n the provision of kindergartens and what a c t i v i t y did take place was confined to the private sector. I t i s d i f f i c u l t to know how many, i f any, private kindergartens or c h i l d centres existed as few records remain. A Children's Creche operated i n the Old Hospital Building i n down-town Vancouver for some years i n the f i r s t and second decades of the •century. Its purposewas purely to look a f t e r the c h i l d r e n of working women and as attendance seems to have been f a i r l y i r r e g u l a r i t i s doubtful 77 that any sort of educational programme was offered. In 1919, an Anglican Chinese Kindergarten was operating somewhere i n Vancouver, possibly at the Anglican Chinese Mission on Pender Street. From a d e s c r i p t i o n of the handwork done, i t appears to have been run on Froebe-31 l i a n l i n e s . I t is most probable that s i m i l a r kindergartens•were function-ing i n other urban areas of the province. In 1924, the Putman and Weir Survey of the School System i n B r i t i s h Columbia was published and this could have given impetus to the e s t a b l i s h -ment of kindergartens, for Putman was Inspector of Schools in Ottawa and was a strong supporter of the Ontario kindergartens. However, the Survey 79 dismissed kindergartens as "beyond the scope of our present study," The reason for this i s hard to see for the Survey generally made some e x c i t i n g recommendations for a much more c h i l d centred curriculum. In fact, recom-mendations for the elementary grades sound almost l i k e kindergarten classes, with the c h i l d r e n learning through l i f e experiences. The report noted that although no kindergartens existed i n the p r o v i n c i a l education system, the kindergarten s p i r i t was a l i v e i n many primary classes, p a r t i c u -l a r l y i n Vancouver. The Survey commended this and suggested that work i n t h i s area could be extended. I t also suggested experimentation with kinder-garten-primary classes as an improvement that would require l i t t l e expendi-ture; primary teachers could be used and the rooms equipped with moveable 80 desks. No formal recommendations were made i n t h i s area, however, and the suggestions and implications of the Survey were ignored. The Survey did make one very i n t e r e s t i n g comment that perhaps sheds some l i g h t on the lack of support for .kindergartens i n the e a r l y years. I t concerned the apathy shown towards public education by "a very i n t e l l i g e n t part of the community" - those c i t i z e n s who supported private schools for 81 t h e i r c h i l d r e n . Not that B r i t i s h Columbia was unique i n having private schools but perhaps, i n c i t i e s where kindergartens were established success-f u l l y , s i m i l a r groups were prepared to work, not only, for t h e i r own c h i l d -32 ren, but for those of others also. It was not u n t i l 1944 that the f i r s t public kindergartens were to be opened by the Vancouver and V i c t o r i a Schools Boards and, by this time, both the concept of kindergarten i t s e l f and the reasons for including i t i n the public system had a l t e r e d considerably. America was the land where Froebel's kindergarten blossomed and came to l i f e ; Ontario, too was an early leader i n the kindergarten f i e l d . Despite B r i t i s h Columbia's proximity to and close t i e s with both America and Ontario, t h i s province did not choose to follow t h e i r early lead. Instead, B r i t i s h Columbia waited u n t i l changed s o c i a l , economic and educa-t i o n a l conditions were forcing school a u t h o r i t i e s a l l over the world to reconsider early childhood education. 33 FOOTNOTES - CHAPTER I "''"Marvin Laze r son , O r i g i n s o f the Urban School- (Cambridge, M a s s . : Harvard U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s , 1971), p. 36. o Lawrence A . Cremin, The Transformat ion o f the Schoo l ; (New Y o r k : A l f r e d A . . Knopf, 1964); Timothy L . Smi th , " P r o g r e s s i v i s m i n American E d u c a t i o n , " H a r v a r d E d u c a t i o n a l Revue 31 (Sp r ing 1961) : 168-93. I b i d . , p . 172; Cremin, Transformat ion , pp. v i i i - v x . + 4 F r i e d e r i c h F r o e b e l , The Educa t ion o f Man, t r ans . W.N. Hailman (New York : D. App le ton , 1897) ( r e p r i n t e d . , New York : A . M . . K e l l e y , 1970), passim. 5 I b i d . , p . 55. ' E v e l y n Weber, The K inde rga r t en : I t s Encounter w i t h E d u c a t i o n a l  Thought i n America . (New York : Teachers C o l l e g e P r e s s , 1969), pp. 6-7. ^ F r i e d e r i c h F r o e b e l , . Pedagogics of the K inde rga r t en (London: E . A r n o l d , 1899), passim. ^ e b e r , The K inde rga r t en , p. 18. Nina C. Vanderwalker , The K inde rga r t en i n American Educat ion . (New York : M a c M i l l a n C o . , 1988), p . 4. '• 1 0 I b i d . , . p . 2. 1 1 I b i d . , pp. 25-26. 1 o I n t e r n a t i o n a l K inde rga r t en Union , . P ioneers o f the K i n d e r g a r t e n - i n  America. (New Y o r k : Century C o . , 1924), p . 34. (hereaf te r c i t e d as IKU, P i o n e e r s . ) •*"%eber, The K inde rga r t en , p. 24. 1 4 I K U , P i o n e e r s , p . 23. •*"%eber, The K i n d e r g a r t e n , p. 30. 1 6 I b i d . , ^ E l i z a b e t h D. Ross, The K inde rga r t en Crusade: The Es tab l i shment o f  P re schoo l Educa t ion i n the Un i t ed S t a t e s - (Athens, Ohio : Ohio U n i v e r s i t y P r e s s , 1976), p. 13. 1 Q I b i d . , p . 27; L . M . Logan and G. Logan, Educa t ing Young C h i l d r e n , (Toronto: M c G r a w - H i l l Ryerson L t d . , 1974), p . 15. 34 •^Marvin Lazerson, "The H i s t o r i c a l Antecedents of Early Childhood Education," Early Childhood Education, The Seventy-First- Yearbook of the  National Society for the Study of Education, ed., Ira J . Gordon. (Chicago: U n i v e r s i t y of Chicago Press, 1972), p. 40. 2 0Vanderwalker, The Kindergarten, pp. 57-58. 2 1 I b i d . , p. 56. 2 2Weber, The Kindergarten, p. 46. 2 3 I b i d . , p. 45. 2^John Dewey, The School and Society, 2nd ed. (Chicago: U n i v e r s i t y of Chicago'Press, 1915), pp. 6-7. 2 % e b e r , The Kindergarten, p. 66. 2 6 I b i d . , p. 67. 9 7 Ross, Crusade, p. 70. 2 8American Educators Encyclopedia, 1941 ed., s.v. "Kindergarten," by Patty Smith H i l l . 2 9 I n t e r n a t i o n a l Kindergarten Union, The Kindergarten; Reports of the  Committee of Nineteen. (Cambridge, Mass:• Houghton, M i f f l i n Co., 1913), p. x i . 3 QRoss, Crusade, p. 80. 3 1Weber, The Kindergarten, pp. 83-84; Vanderwalker, The Kindergarten, p. 187. 3 2Ross, Crusade, p. 92. 3 3Vanderwalker, The Kindergarten, p. 186. 3 4 R oss, Crusade, p. 85. 3^Vanderwalker, The Kindergarten, p.•191. 3^Ross Crusade, p. 90. 3 7 D a v i d K. Osborn, Early Childhood Education i n H i s t o r i c a l Perspective (Athens, Ga: Education Associates, 1975), pp. 39-40. 3 8Weber, The Kindergarten, p. 171. 3 9 I b i d . , 194-95. 35 4 0 D o l o r e s D u r k i n , Teaching Young C h i l d r e n to Read, 2nd ed. (Toronto: A l l y n and Bacon I n c . , 1976) , p . 13. ^ O s b o r n , E a r l y Chi ldhood Educa t ion , p. 48. ^ I b i d . , p . 40; D u r k i n , Teaching Young C h i l d r e n , p. 7. ^ B a r b a r a Corbe t t , "The. P u b l i c School K inde rga r t en i n O n t a r i o . 1833-1967," (D.Ed . D i s s e r t a t i o n , U n i v e r s i t y of Toronto , 1968), p . 97. 4 4 I b i d . , p ..99. 4 5 I b i d . , p . 100. 4 ^ B . M . C a r t e r , "James L . Hughes and the Gospel o f E d u c a t i o n , " (D.Ed , d i s s e r t a t i o n , U n i v e r s i t y o f Toronto , 1966), p . 311. 4 ^ C o r b e t t , " P u b l i c School K i n d e r g a r t e n , " pp. 102-4. 4 ^ L o g a n and Logan, Educa t ing Young C h i l d r e n , p . 14. 4 ^ C o r b e t t , " P u b l i c School K i n d e r g a r t e n , " p. 110. -^Logan and Logan, Educa t ing Young C h i l d r e n , , p. 15. -^Canadian Educa t ion A s s o c i a t i o n , Kindergar tens i n Canada: A Survey o f  Some.Pre-Grade 1 Programs i n P u b l i c a l l y Supported School Systems (Toronto: 1972), pass im. -^Logan and Logan, Educa t ing Young C h i l d r e n , p. 14. ^ D o m i n i o n Educa t ion A s s o c i a t i o n , Minutes o f P roceed ings . 5 th Conven-t i o n . Winnipeg 1904, (Toronto: 1905), p . 283. (he rea f t e r c i t e d as DEA, P roceed ings . ) 5 4 F . K . Stewart , "The Canadian Educa t ion A s s o c i a t i o n : I t s H i s t o r y and R o l e , " (M.Ed. T h e s i s , U n i v e r s i t y of Toronto , 1956), p . 10. 5 5 l b i d . , p. 8. -^DEA, P roceed ings . 4 th Convent ion . Ottawa 1901, p. 379. : 5 7 S e e below, p. 23. 5^DEA, Proceed ings . 5 th Convent ion . Winnipeg 1904; 6 th Convent ion . Toronto 1907, passim. 59 I b i d . , 7 th Convent ion . V i c t o r i a 1909, pp. 256-59. 6 0 I b i d . , p. 64. 6 1 l b i d . , p . 66. 36 6 2 I b i d . , 1892-1909, passim. 6 3A.N. Scarfe to Hon. George Ross, 16 November 1895. RG2 P-2 Box 34, Archives of Ontario, Toronto. 64sun, 7 February 1951, p. 5. 6 5 p a j l y News-Advertiser, 23 December 1897, p. 3. 66Daily World, 8 January 1898, p. 2; Ibid., 10 January 1898, p. 6. 67Ibid., 23 December 1897, p. 7; Daily News Advertiser, 23 December 1897, p. 3. , 68paily World, 10 January 1898, p. 6. 69Vancouver School Board, Minutes of Meetings, of the Board of Trustees, Meeting of 9 February 1898, (n.p.) (hereafter c i t e d as VSB Minutes.) 70ibid., Meeting of 16 February 1898. 71paily World, 10 March 1898, p. 7. 7 2 B r i t i s h Columbia, Department of Education, Annual Report of the  Public Schools 1907, p. B32. (hereafter c i t e d as Department of Education, Annual Reports.) 73province, 1 February 1906, p. 3. 74pepartment of Education, Annual Report 1910-11, p. A38. 75ibid., 1908-09, p. A29. 76ibid., 1912-13, p. A56. 77The Creche Day Book 1912, Ad. Mssv':l*24, Vancouver:City Archives. 7 8Kathl een Wycherley,' A B r i e f History of the Preschool Movement i n  B r i t i s h Columbia to 1974, (Vancouver: B r i t i s h Columbia Preschool Teachers Association, 1976), p. 4. 79John H. Putman and George M. Weir, Survey of the School System (of B r i t i s h Columbia), ( V i c t o r i a : printed by C.F. Banfield, 1925), p. 75. ' 8 0 I b i d . ,c.p. 365. 8 1 I b i d . , p. 23. 37 CHAPTER II PUBLIC SCHOOL KINDERGARTEN DEVELOPMENT IN BRITISH COLUMBIA Development of public school!;:kindergartens i n B r i t i s h Columbia was slow and piecemeal. Serious discussion of the subject began towards the end of World War II as a r e s u l t of the concern which developed during war years for c h i l d r e n of women i n the work force. The V i c t o r i a and Vancouver School Boards both opened a small number of kindergarten classes i n the mid-1940's, but although further classes were opened i n the following decade, they were i n s u f f i c i e n t for a l l the five-year-old c h i l d r e n who wished to attend. When the Royal Commission on Education was appointed i n 1958, those | parents, teachers and School Trustees who favoured the expansion of public school kindergarten classes were hopeful that the recommendations of the Commission would give some support to t h e i r point of view. The Commission did favour the establishment of kindergartens to meet l o c a l needs, but did not go so far as to recommend t h e i r establishment on a province-wide basis. The l e g i s l a t i o n that resulted from the Commission's recommendations, allowed interested School Boards to proceed with the establishment of kindergarten classes at a faster rate, but there was no compulsion for them to do so. Throughout the decade of the 1960's, more and more kindergartens were opened as School Boards found themselves in an easier f i n a n c i a l p o s i t i o n and as a consensus gradually developed as to the d e s i r a b i l i t y of kinder-garten as an i n t e g r a l part of the public school system. The e l e c t i o n of the New Democratic Party government i n 1972. was the f i n a l step towards province-wide establishment of the public school kinder-38 gartens. In the following year, amendments to the Schools Act required Boards to begin providing kindergarten experience for a l l five-year-olds who desired i t . By 1975 the goal that had been pursued for three decades was a r e a l i t y . The Second World War triggered the development of public school k i n -dergartens i n B r i t i s h Columbia. I n i t i a l l y , welfare and cha r i t y workers demanded nursery and day-care services for young c h i l d r e n as t h e i r mothers entered the work force. Although i t would appear that few B r i t i s h Columbian women were a c t u a l l y employed in war industries, the argument that f a c i l i t i e s must be provided for the c h i l d r e n of women doing war work was frequently 1 c i t e d at th i s time. Many women did, however, enter the work force to re-place men who were on act i v e service and the number of women i n B r i t i s h Columbia engaged i n non-agricultural industries rose from 43,000 to 72,000 2 between 1941 and 1945. A second reason for the demand for day-care services was the fact that, i n urban areas, many families were l i v i n g i n cramped housing conditions and i t was becoming increasingly obvious to welfare workers and educators that this was a far from optimum s i t u a t i o n for c h i l d - r e a r i n g . Bad housing conditions, and the adverse e f f e c t s on those forced to dwell i n them, were not new discoveries, nor were they exclusive to Vancouver and V i c t o r i a , but the upheaval of the war years seemed to make the ef f e c t s more noticeable. Welfare workers, i n Vancouver p a r t i c u l a r l y , were concerned for c h i l d -ren who were being deprived s o c i a l l y , emotionally or p h y s i c a l l y by these conditions. Many f e l t that these c h i l d r e n should receive some compensation through attendance at a nursery school or day-care centre where there was nu t r i t i o u s food, space to run and play, other c h i l d r e n and adults for s o c i a l 39 interaction, and a stable, secure emotional climate. Welfare workers also saw that single parents, whether temporarily separated by the war, or permanently alone, needed re s p i t e from the constant demands of young children, even i f they were not i n the work force. Several types of c h i l d care f a c i l i t i e s were considered, but voluntary welfare agencies did not have the resources to deal adequately with the problem. A f t e r some discussion, the School Boards i n Vancouver and V i c t o r i a , the two largest urban areas i n B r i t i s h Columbia, became involved. Their s o l u t i o n to the problem was the establishment of a li m i t e d number of kindergartens. The extent of public i n t e r e s t i n the subject can be gauged by the fact that the newspapers of the day reported not only the more o f f i c i a l debates that took place i n the l e g i s l a t u r e or at School Board meetings, but also ran a r t i c l e s on the needs of ch i l d r e n and on the various centres both public and private, o f f i c i a l and u n o f f i c i a l , that were established. In marked contrast to the s i t u a t i o n i n the pre-war years, l e t t e r s to the Editor on pre-school topics were also numerous. 1 On several occasions i n 1943 and 1944, the p r o v i n c i a l l e g i s l a t u r e discussed the provision of c h i l d care services and stimulated reaction from both private and public agencies already a c t i v e i n the f i e l d . The discussion arose p a r t l y as a r e s u l t of the Dominion-Provincial co-operative plan for provision of day nurseries for c h i l d r e n of women i n war industries. The plan was only operational i n Ontario and Quebec, the two most indus-t r i a l i z e d provinces, but would have been extended to B r i t i s h Columbia i f 3 s u f f i c i e n t women were engaged i n war industry to warrant i t . I t provided for several types of care for c h i l d r e n from two years of age onwards, but 40 required that at l e a s t 75 per cent of the mothers be engaged i n o f f i c i a l l y 4 recognised war work. There were very few women i n th i s category, i n B r i t i s h Columbia, but many women, forced to work because of the war, f e l t that they should receive c h i l d care services. While many people could accept that under wartime conditions i t was necessary for numbers of women to work, some f e l t that once the-war was over women would and should return to t h e i r t r a d i t i o n a l roles as homemakers and mothers. I f this was going to be the case, no organization, government or otherwise, wanted to be l e f t with unused nursery schools. There were thus two strands i n the debate that began on the question of nursery schools. The f i r s t concerned whether or not mothers of young ch i l d r e n should be i n the work force at a l l and the second centred on whether the need for nursery schools was to be a-permanent one or whether i t would cease once the war ended. Two of the most voeal protagonists on the whole question of working women and c h i l d care were Mrs. Laura Jamieson, Co-operative Commonwealth Federation member for Vancouver Centre, and Mrs. T i l l y Rolston, Conserva-t i v e member for Vancouver-Point Grey. Both had an inte r e s t i n young child r e n . Mrs. Rolston had h e r s e l f been a teacher for many years, and Mrs. Jamiesonwas.a Juvenile Court Judge i n Burnaby from 1927 to 1938.~* Mrs. Jamieson e n t h u s i a s t i c a l l y supported the establishment of day nurseries i n B r i t i s h Columbia, not only for war workers' c h i l d r e n but for c h i l d r e n of a l l working women. She f e l t that c h i l d r e n l i v i n g i n cramped housing con-d i t i o n s and c h i l d r e n of s h i f t workers would also b e n e f i t . g r e a t l y from attendance at nursery school where the programme-was designed to encourage orderly habits i n work and play and i n eating and sleeping. She also 41 pointed out the b e n e f i c i a l e f f e c t s on parents, and the ro l e of the nursery school i n preventing juvenile delinquency. The stress of constantly look-ing a f t e r young c h i l d r e n or leaving them i n unsatisfactory care was removed with the provision of nursery schools, she said and through educational programmes, parents could learn much about t h e i r c h i l d r e n thus providing a more s a t i s f a c t o r y home l i f e . Mrs. Jamieson had no doubt that women would continue to work a f t e r the war and therefore saw no reason to delay establishment of nursery schools. She-was, however, aware that there-were few q u a l i f i e d nursery school teachers a v a i l a b l e i n B r i t i s h Columbia at the . 6 t lme. T i l l y Rolston vehemently upheld another point of view. She was supported by several male M.L.A.'s and some members of;the public. The government did not appear to have a p o l i c y on.the subject so that even though she was on the government side of the House, she cannot be said to have been vo i c i n g an o f f i c i a l a t t i t u d e . She scorned.Jamieson's suggestions, saying that i t was "an i n s u l t " to mothers to suggest that they could not bring up t h e i r own ch i l d r e n better than "some parched, dried up, starched and cultured academician-." A woman's place she maintained, was i n the home "with the meals ready, beds made and not a speck of dust to be seen." It was "wicked", she said, to " l u r e " women from home; absentee mothers had already produced the worst juvenile delinquency that B r i t i s h Columbia had ever known. Women i n a democracy should be able to recognise t h e i r r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s , but i f necessary, she suggested, they could be paid to stay at home, or, as she put i t , be drafted for duty i n the homes of the nation to preserve those homes.^ In reply to a telegram of protest from Mrs. L i l l i a n Newitt of the Strathcona Nursery School, she grudgingly 42 admitted that nurseries had a r o l e to play i n very congested areas, but f e l t that a better s o l u t i o n lay i n improved housing conditions, and a lower-ing of school attendance age so that the government could e s t a b l i s h infant schools. She seemed to f e e l that this would provide some r e l i e f for c h i l d r e n l i v i n g i n cramped housing. At the same time, because school fi n i s h e d at 3:00 p.m., the mothers of these c h i l d r e n would not be encouraged 8 to look for jobs. Although Rolston's comments drew much opposition from those i n favour of nursery schools, there were many-who supported her views on working women and c h i l d care. The Ontario Labour Mini s t e r was reported i n the Province as also suggesting that working women be sent back to t h e i r homes and prevented from unloading t h e i r r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s on c h i l d care centres, 9 thus creating future juvenile delinquency problems. Local nursery school a u t h o r i t i e s denied that t h i s was the case i n B r i t i s h Columbia. Women here were doing r e a l war work,, they maintained, and so c h i l d care was e s s e n t i a l . But at the same time, they contradicted themselves by s t a t i n g that only approximately one-third of mothers with c h i l d r e n at nursery school did i n fact work at a l l . ^ It would appear then,, that while c e r t a i n sections of the' community needed or wanted nursery schools, the debate was very much clouded by changing s o c i e t a l norms and the threat that many saw i n the i n -creasing number of women no longer t i e d to the home. Although there was discussion i n the l e g i s l a t u r e , no a c t i o n was taken at o f f i c i a l l e v e l s . However, i n the summer of 1943, the Council of S o c i a l Agencies, an associated group of c h a r i t a b l e welfare agencies i n the Van-couver area, opened three experimental playschools. The programme was funded by the Welfare Federation,, another a s s o c i a t i o n of voluntary organi-43 zations whose main function was to r a i s e and d i s t r i b u t e funds to c h a r i t a b l e organizations. The.playschools were situated at Alexandra Neighbourhood House on West Seventh Avenue i n K i t s i l a n o , Gordon House at J e r v i s and Nelson i n the West End, and at Jackson and Powell in the East End. This t h i r d playschool was named Strathcona. So successful were they, that at the end of t h e i r t r i a l period they were closed b r i e f l y for renovations before being opened again i n the f a l l . They were open from 7:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. for children, aged three to s i x years. A hot lunch was provided and fees were assessed on a s l i d i n g s c a l e . ^ Although they managed to keep the three centres running, the support-ing agencies were constantly looking for government aid. The Vancouver C i t y Council was approached for funds but saw the.problem as being only rel a t e d to thewar. It was cautious, therefore, of committing i t s e l f to a 12 project that i t considered might be unnecessary i n a few years, time. Nor-would the C i t y Council attempt to obtain a r e v i s i o n of the-basis on which the Dominion-Provincial grant for nursery schools was based. The Housewives League and the Council of S o c i a l Agencies suggested that the C i t y Council attempt to have the required percentage of war working mothers needed for the grant reduced from 75 per cent to 50 per cent, but i t de-13 c l i n e d to do so. In l i g h t of the small number of working mothers at the three Welfare Federation nursery schools, this would seem to be a reasonable stand. The Consumer Council of B r i t i s h Columbia also requested funds for nursery schools from c i t y , p r o v i n c i a l and federal governments, and experi-enced the f r u s t r a t i o n of being r e f e r r e d from one to another and back again. Miss Zelda C o l l i n s , Director of S o c i a l Welfare for the P r o v i n c i a l Department of Welfare, s a i d the government a t t r i b u t e d the need for nurseries c h i e f l y 44 to poor housing. The government did not simply want expediency, she stated, and suggested that an a l t e r n a t i v e to nursery schools might be a city-wide system of recreation centres, perhaps in the now deserted Japanese schools, which could each.include a pre-school group. She also suggested the use of 14 vacant school buildings i n some areas. However, no a c t i o n was taken on these suggestions. While welfare agencies were the f i r s t to concern themselves with the problem of nursery and day-care f a c i l i t i e s for pre-school-age children, they were not alone i n the f i e l d for long. ."Soon the Vancouver School Board began to consider the s i t u a t i o n . Quite naturally, the Board viewed the problem i n a d i f f e r e n t l i g h t than the s o c i a l agencies; i t s t r a d i t i o n a l concern had always been education rather than welfare. But as no assistance seemed l i k e l y from other l e v e l s of government, welfare agencies and i n t e r -ested members of the public appeared content for the School Board to shoulder the problem. The Council of S o c i a l Agencies continued to operate i t s three nursery schools, but f u l l y supported School Board e f f o r t s to provide further services. The Vancouver School Board c a l l e d a Special Meeting i n August 1943 i n order to discuss the subject. The following November, a committee con s i s t -ing of Trustees Ada Crump and Dr. A.B. Jamieson,. H.A.. MacCorkindale, Super-intendent of Schools, R. Straight, Senior Education O f f i c e r , O.J. Thomas, Inspector of Schools, and E l s i e Roy,, Primary Supervisor, was appointed to make a survey as to the t o t a l cost, advantages and necessity of organizing nursery schools. The Committee presented i t s three page report i n February 1944. I t examined the enrolment and home conditions of c h i l d r e n at Alexandra House 45 and Gordon House and included a b r i e f survey of nursery school planning and provision i n the United Kingdom, United States and A u s t r a l i a . Every-where but i n Canada, the report noted, "provision i s . . . a n t icipated for an increase of school l i f e at both ends." The report recommended that the Schools Act be amended to give school boards the-authority to e s t a b l i s h infant schools; that the government:give f i n a n c i a l a i d towards the estab-lishment of ssuch schools in areas where there was a d e f i n i t e need for the accommodation of c h i l d r e n aged three to f i v e years; that these infant schools be separate from elementary schools, and that plans for such schools be very soon i n the process of p r e p a r a t i o n . ^ These•recommendations were quite advanced considering the f a i r l y general lack of provision for the pre-school c h i l d i n the rest of Canada, with the exception of Ontario and parts of Quebec. The report could have led to important changes i n education i n Vancouver. But the Board must have been aware, even as the report was accepted, that i n view of the economic s i t u a t i o n , the government was u n l i k e l y to make large grants a v a i l -able. The Board i t s e l f was i n no p o s i t i o n to finance such an expansion. The extent of. i t s commitment was perhaps shown by the fact that the infant schools were only recommended for areas, "where there has been shown to be a need." Pre-school education was s t i l l seen very much as a remedial measure for the economically and s o c i a l l y underprivileged. The Vancouver School Board did not see i t as the r i g h t of every c h i l d but i t d i d i n i t i a t e some'action'when a l l other public bodies repeatedly avoided the question. Almost immediately the Vancouver School Board and the Council of S o c i a l Agencies petitioned the M i n i s t e r of Education, the Hon. H.G. Perry, for the f i n a n c i a l aid, needed to e s t a b l i s h some pre-school services. School 46 Boards had been authorized since 1922 to e s t a b l i s h kindergarten classes at t h e i r own expense but none had done so. The Vancouver Board considered that the circumstances now j u s t i f i e d a request for extra funding. The p r o v i n c i a l government, perhaps f e e l i n g that this would reduce pressure on i t s e l f to e s t a b l i s h separate and more expensive day nurseries, agreed to provide a grant towards the salary of kindergarten teachers on the same basis as for other teachers but Boards were required to shoulder the cost of equipment. The classes were to be for, c h i l d r e n aged four to s i x or up to two years below the age of compulsory attendance,, but they ignored the very young c h i l d whom many wished to see provided with nursery school care. Vancouver School Board immediately, launched a further survey as to kindergarten needs which indicated that classes would be of most benefit at Dawson, Strathcona, Seymour, Henry Hudson and C e c i l Rhodes Schools. A l l f i v e were i n inner suburban areas with a high percentage of the population i n the lower socio-economic bracket. The School Board c r i t e r i o n for.the establishment of a kindergarten was solely, the number of four to six-year-old c h i l d r e n l i v i n g i n the v i c i n i t y . However, the f i v e schools that were i d e n t i f i e d as in greatest need were also in the areas i n which the Council of S o c i a l Agencies and other organizations were heavily involved with welfare work. Strathcona and Seymour Schools were close to the Strathcona Nursery School, Dawson was near Gordon House, and Hudson was near Alexandra House. C e c i l Rhodes School was in the Fairview area, another d i s t r i c t i n which the'welfare organizations were ac t i v e . It was f i n a l l y decided to organize t r i a l classes at Hudson and Dawson beginning in September 1944. In V i c t o r i a , the second largest urban area in B r i t i s h Columbia, the 47 s i t u a t i o n i n regard to pre-school-aged c h i l d r e n was s i m i l a r , but the V i c t o r i a School Board acted, more r a p i d l y and i n a s l i g h t l y d i f f e r e n t way to i t s counterpart i n Vancouver. In July 19^3, the V i c t o r i a Board planned a pre-primary class for t h i r t y c h i l d r e n of women working i n war industry. The-class was to begin i n September of the same year and was to be open from 7:15 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. every day except Sunday, providing up to three meals a day depending on 17 each c h i l d s hours of attendance. I f i t had been successful, this would have been one of the most comprehensive schemes established by a School Board anywhere i n Canada to that time. But e l i g i b i l i t y depended on the mother being engaged i n o f f i c i a l l y recognised war work, and a s u f f i c i e n t number of ch i l d r e n with mothers i n t h i s category could not be found. Even when the.preliminary enrolment l i s t was opened to c h i l d r e n of any working women a s u f f i c i e n t number was not forthcoming and so the project was l e f t 18 in abeyance u n t i l the f a l l term. Despite the lack of support for the School Board day-care centre, V i c t o r i a s o c i a l agencies continued to pressure the government for f a c i l i t i e s . The Vancouver Island J o i n t Labour Conference was one group that was con-cerned at the p l i g h t of ch i l d r e n of working women, although i t appears to be the only labour Body that was. I t had no objection to women i n the work force,, but i t urged that women not be encouraged to take employment unless t h e i r c h i l d r e n could be adequately cared for. The Conference also requested 19 that day nurseries be opened under government control. At a public meeting c a l l e d on 28 October 1943 by the U n i v e r s i t y Women's Club, a Nursery Association for Greater V i c t o r i a was formed. Its objects were to act as an educational body to carry on research and to co-48 ordinate the a c t i v i t i e s of a l l i n d i v i d u a l groups furthering the nursery school movement. Mr. H.L. Campbell, Municipal Inspector, V i c t o r i a School D i s t r i c t , was present at the meeting and stated that he was very sympathe-t i c to the nursery school movement and recognised i t s value for a l l c h i l d -ren, not just the underprivileged, but. that cost was the major factor 20 preventing establishment of such schools. In -December 1943, a large delegation of representatives of Greater V i c t o r i a S o c i a l Agencies and public organizations asked Hon. George Pearson, P r o v i n c i a l Minister of .Labour, to bring about the establishment of day nurseries for c h i l d r e n of war workers and women replacing men i n industry. They also asked for a f t e r school care and hot lunches for school c h i l d r e n . Pearson was sympathetic and promised to take the-subject up with Ottawa i f 21 the need for such services could be demonstrated with facts and figures. In l i n e with the V i c t o r i a School Board's expressed interest, i n nursery schools, Miss Marian James, Director of that Board's Primary Department, v i s i t e d Oregon and Washington State early i n 1944. She saw several d i f f e r e n t kinds of nursery schools, ranging from the two conducted by the U n i v e r s i t y of Washington, to basement rooms in Seattle equipped with f u r n i t u r e made by the mothers themselves. She also v i s i t e d the f e d e r a l l y funded nursery school for c h i l d r e n of shipyard workers in Seattle, and, what was to be the largest nursery school i n the world, at Kaiser dockyards on Swan Island,. Portland,. Oregon. I t had only just opened, but was already catering for 1800 c h i l d r e n i n three eight-hour s h i f t s , c o i n c i d i n g with the workers s h i f t s . On her return, Miss James urged that nursery schools must not be considered s o l e l y a war-time measure, but must be continued i n peace-time as w e l l . The public must be educated to t h e i r need, she said, 49 and suggested that the U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia include nursery , , 2 2 school t r a i n i n g i n i t s Home Economics programme. Once the government announced that i t would give assistance towards the establishment of kindergarten classes, the V i c t o r i a School Board shelved i t s plan for nursery schools. I t now aimed to use the kinder-23 garten class mainly for preparing c h i l d r e n for entry into Grade 1. This preparatory work was currently being done i n the Grade 1 classrooms but because c h i l d r e n entering were i n i t i a l l y at d i f f e r e n t l e v e l s of readiness, much time was perceived as b e i n g . ' l o s t 1 before a l l c h i l d r e n were ready to begin formal schoolwork. Trustees f e l t that the kindergarten class would give c h i l d r e n time for physical, emotional and mental adjustment to school l i f e . Their s k i l l s would be increased, t h e i r range of interests broadened, and t h e i r language developed, so that they could enter Grade 1 as pupils 24 rather than as babies. These rapid changes i n plans displayed by both School Boards i l l u s -t r a t e quite - c l e a r l y that there was no r e a l understanding or commitment to provision of pre-school classes on the part of the Department of Education or the Boards themselves. The Boards, however, did at least take the i n i t i a t i v e by attempting to provide some p r e-school experience for some chi l d r e n i n t h e i r d i s t r i c t s . Very few people, at any l e v e l , considered that pre-school education, whether i n day nurseries, infant schools or kindergarten classes, should be an e s s e n t i a l part of the education system and even had school Trustees wished to, they could not have.provided such 25 services for a l l c h i l d r e n without massive government funding. There were two reasons for the v a c i l l a t i o n - o n the part of the School Boards. F i r s t , the :suddenness with which they found themselves facing a 50 s i t u a t i o n that was e n t i r e l y new to them, and second, the fact that they had to form, p o l i c i e s from the often c o n f l i c t i n g views of the Trustees and permanent o f f i c i a l s . This would explain the several schemes that were considered before the kindergarten class was chosen as an answer, at least i n part, to the problem of many young c h i l d r e n with working parents or i n -adequate home conditions. Both School Boards opened t h e i r f i r s t kindergarten classes in September 1944. Vancouver had two classes, one each at Henry Hudson and Dawson Schools, and V i c t o r i a had one at Spring Ridge School. These classes were considered experimental and both Boards retained the option of closing.them 26 the following year i f they were unsuccessful. They were, however, ex-tremely successful and in 1945 Vancouver opened a t h i r d class, at Norquay School. In 1946, three more were opened at Begbie, C e c i l Rhodes and Wolfe Schools, bringing the t o t a l enrolment in-the Vancouver d i s t r i c t to j u s t 27 under 300 ch i l d r e n . V i c t o r i a ' s i n i t i a l expansion was even more rapid. From the si n g l e class opened in 1944, the number was increased to eight i n 2 8 1946. Four hundred and eighty c h i l d r e n were enrolled i n these eight 29 classes but many other applicants had been turned away. Not only was there a l i m i t e d enrolment, but also the number of a v a i l -able teachers trained i n kindergarten work was small for there were no t r a i n i n g f a c i l i t i e s w ithin B r i t i s h Columbia. To q u a l i f y for the p r o v i n c i a l government grant, teachers in the kindergarten'classes were required to possess an acceptable primary or elementary q u a l i f i c a t i o n and i t was pre-ferred, but not e s s e n t i a l , that they have some kindergarten t r a i n i n g or experience. To f a c i l i t a t e t h i s , the Department of Education began to include courses that dealt s p e c i f i c a l l y with kindergarten in i t s Summer 51 Schools. In 1945, two classes, one i n kindergarten-primary methods and one i n observation and demonstration were conducted by Miss L u c i l l e Fenn, 30 Director of Elementary Education in. Portland, Oregon. Further courses were offered i n following years. The Extension and Adult Education Department at the University of B r i t i s h Columbia soon began to o f f e r courses i n kindergarten subjects too. These grew out of parent education courses offered i n the mid-1940's, but by 1947 the programme was greatly accelerated. Some classes were aimed at parents interested i n forming t h e i r own co-operative play groups, others 3 were to develop into part of a t r a i n i n g programme for pre-school teachers. Public demand for even more kindergartens continued but no further classes were opened u n t i l 1951. There were two main reasons for t h i s . The first'^was the perennial one of finance. Enrolment i n the primary grades was beginning to show an increase as the f i r s t of the war boom babies reached school age. School Boards were obliged to cater for these c h i l d r e n before they made.provision for the younger ones. Second, not a l l Trustees were completely convinced that kindergarten was necessary or desirable. On both the Vancouver and V i c t o r i a Boards there were one or two members, generally women, who appeared to support the p r i n c i p l e s and pr a c t i c e of kindergarten,, and they, along with public pressure had managed to influence 32 the Board up to a.point. But as the finances became t i g h t e r the more sk e p t i c a l Trustees gained support. The Vancouver Board was approached for help s i x times i n two years by a delegation from the Grandview YMCA Mothers Club. This group operated a kindergarten that had several problems, not the l e a s t being a waiting l i s t of up to 100 child r e n . I t sought aid from the Board which grudgingly agreed to once more investigate a l l phases of 52 the kindergarten question. The Board warned, however, that i t s own kinder-gartens had only been successful "up; t o a point" and that the wholesale 33 introduction of kindergartens would be extremely expensive. The most obvious r e s u l t of the li m i t e d establishment of public school kindergarten classes was the fact that; from the very beginning, they had no hope of catering to a l l those who wished to e n r o l l . Thus, although they were t e c h n i c a l l y for four to s i x year olds, e l i g i b i l i t y was r e s t r i c t e d from the s t a r t to those-who would be f i v e before the end of December. Enrolment was supposedly on a f i r s t c o m e f i r s t served basis but of necessity older 34 c h i l d r e n were given preference. Despite School Board intervention, then, r e l a t i v e l y few chil d r e n i n the pre-school age group were being catered for. E.J.M. Church, Supervisor- of the Teachers Services Bureau of the Department of Education i n Edmonton, estimated the pre-school population i n B r i t i s h Columbia i n 1948 as 81,220, and noted that only 781, or 1 per cent, attended public school kindergartens. A further 2,792, or 4.4 per cent attended other pre-school groups. Just how many pre-school groups and kindergartens were operating out-side of the public school system i n the l a t e 1940's and the 1950's i s impossible to say, but the number was large. A lengthy a r t i c l e i n the Sun i n March 1947 mentions f i f t y p r i v a t e l y managed kindergartens i n the Greater 36 Vancouver area alone. Some of these were c l e a r l y parent co-operative groups but otheres were obviously run by t h e i r owners. Co-operative play groups were based on the co-operative of f a c u l t y wives, organised at the Univ e r s i t y of Chicago by Dr. Katharine Whiteside Taylor i n 1916. This type of pre-school group had spread quite r a p i d l y i n the United States, each i n d i v i d u a l co-operative f u l f i l l i n g the needs of i t s 53 own community. The main feature of such a group was the fact that i t was wholely owned and operated by the parents themselves. A teacher was generally hired to lead the work with the children, but she would be assisted, to a large degree, by the parents themselves. Emphasis was also placed on education of the parents concerning the growth and development of t h e i r c h i l d r e n . In the summer of 1944, Mrs. Gertrude M c G i l l organized the f i r s t B r i t i s h Columbian co-operative play group for c h i l d r e n aged three to eight. I t was held i n the large back garden of her own home i n V i c t o r i a and as i t s fo c a l point was a w e l l stocked l i b r a r y , she c a l l e d i t the Children's Garden Libr a r y . Seven volunteers attended three mornings each week to read s t o r i e s to and supervise the play of an average of 75 c h i l d r e n . The following year the programme was expanded to include nature study, music, 37 art and drama and the attendance doubled. Soon other groups were begun by interested parents who i n i t i a t e d , financed and administered t h e i r own co-ops and c a r r i e d on t h e i r own study groups. • In 1949, the play groups amalgamated to form the Vancouver Island Co-operative Play Group Associa-t i o n and soon a f t e r a s i m i l a r A s s o c i a t i o n was formed i n Vancouver. Because play groups.could be established wherever there was a group of interested parents w i l l i n g to support one, t h e i r influence was far greater i n terms of the number of c h i l d r e n served, than that of more o f f i c i a l establishments. Because of t h e i r voluntary nature, they have l e f t l i t t l e behind i n the'way of records even though both Associations are s t i l l i n existence today, and s t i l l c a tering for large numbers of children. Local PTA's who continued to pressure School Boards for more and more public school kindergartens during the 1950's, often also supported the 54 establishment of co-ops, because they saw them as an immediate a l t e r n a t i v e for t h e i r own pre-school c h i l d r e n i n the absence of kindergarten classes. In 1955, Mrs. M c G i l l t r a v e l l e d throughout the province as Pre-school Convenor of the B r i t i s h Columbia PTA, and encouraged the establishment of more co-op groups. By. this time approximately 80 groups were functioning 3 8 province-wide. For c h i l d r e n outside the V i c t o r i a and Vancouver areas, where public school kindergartens were non-existent and where there was less l i k e l i h o o d of finding a private kindergarten, a co-op play group was often the only pre-school experience a v a i l a b l e . While a l l pre-school premises were required to be licensed by the p r o v i n c i a l Department of Welfare, there was no standard of t r a i n i n g re-quired of those i n charge. Many of the teachers working in private kinder-gartens were most concerned that a minimum standard of t r a i n i n g be main-tained. The Vancouver Kindergarten Teachers Association, which had been 39 formed as early as 1932, was p a r t i c u l a r l y concerned about standards. By 1950, there were 60 members in this A ssociation and a l l had at l e a s t the minimum q u a l i f i c a t i o n of high school graduation plus at least a year of s p e c i a l i z e d kindergarten work, including demonstration and observation. The Association c a l l e d for s u i t a b l e equipment and environments for pre-school teachers, which suggests that not a l l private kindergartens were operating at a l e v e l that they considered acceptable. Twenty-three Greater Vancouver private kindergartens advertised, in 1950, that they had Directors 40 that were member of the Association. By this time, however, the Association appears to have l o s t some of i t s force and in 1951, the B r i t i s h Columbia. Pre-School Education Associa-t i o n was formed as ^..central co-ordinating body for pre-school matters 55 throughout the p r o v i n c e . I t had r e p r e s e n t a t i o n from the Vancouver Kinder -41 gar ten Teachers A s s o c i a t i o n as w e l l as other i n t e r e s t e d bodies . By 1954, there were 62 r e g i s t e r e d nurse ry schoo l s , k indergar tens and p l a y groups i n Vancouver and o f these o n l y seven c l a s se s were i n p u b l i c 42 s choo l s . I t i s most l i k e l y tha t i n V i c t o r i a , too , a great ma jo r i ty o f p r e - s c h o o l es tabl i shments e x i s t e d ou t s ide o f the p u b l i c schoo l system. In the f i v e years between 1947 and 1951, the Vancouver School Board e s t a b l i s h e d no new k inde rga r t ens . I n V i c t o r i a , the number remained s t a -t i o n a r y a t e igh t u n t i l the e a r l y s i x t i e s a l though i n those years c l a s s e s i n s e v e r a l areas were c l o s e d and new c l a s s e s opened a t o ther schools as en-43 rolment f igu res f l u c t u a t e d . Dur ing t h i s t ime, the s i t u a t i o n i n the two d i s t r i c t s was somewhat d i f f e r e n t and i t i s . b e s t to examine each s e p a r a t e l y . In Vancouver, the l a c k of fu r the r expansion was c e r t a i n l y not due to the fac t that the subjec t was no longer be ing cons idered by the Board. Each year du r ing the f i v e year p e r i o d , the S p e c i a l Committee on Kindergarten"was re-formed, and w h i l e i t was not as busy as i t had been d u r i n g the p e r i o d 1943-46, i t cont inued to keep a c l o s e check on the number of e l i g i b l e c h i l d r e n i n some o f the more crowded areas o f the c i t y , and to r e i t e r a t e i t s suppor t , i n p r i n c i p l e , o f an expanded k i n d e r g a r t e n programme. But i n the face o f cont inued r e -quests for more k indergar tens from PTA's and s o c i a l w e l f a r e agenc ies , the Board ' s s tandard answer-was that " w h i l e the whole ques t ion o f k indergar tens 44 has been and i s be ing s t u d i e d expansion i s not f i n a n c i a l l y f e a s i b l e . " Even an o f f e r by mothers a t the Mount P leasan t School to a s s i s t i n p a i n t i n g and c l e a n i n g to make an ou t s ide c lass room h a b i t a b l e for a k i n d e r g a r t e n c l a s s , brought n o - p o s i t i v e r e s u l t s . The S p e c i a l Committee examined the 56 b u i l d i n g but cons idered i t u n s u i t a b l e . E a r l i e r the Board had es t imated tha t to e s t a b l i s h a f u l l y equipped c l a s s o f accep tab le s tandard would cos t 46 between .$3,000 and $3,670 per annum. Whi l e the Board f e l t f i n a n c i a l l y unable to spend t h i s amount, i t a l s o seemed u n w i l l i n g to open c l a s se s tha t were l e s s than f u l l y equipped or housed i n l e s s than i d e a l rooms. The t i g h t f i n a n c i a l p o s i t i o n of the Board arose from the a l r eady i n c r e a s i n g number o f pr imary grade enrolments caused by the baby boom that fo l lowed the^war. A h a l t i n expansion o f schoo l accommodation d u r i n g the war years had r e s u l t e d i n a c e r t a i n l a c k o f c lass room space and the i n -creased post-war b i r t h r a t e exacerbated t h i s problem. At the beg inn ing o f the 1948 school year , s i x elementary schools-, Begbie , Douglas , K e r r i s d a l e Annex, L l o y d George, Renfrew and Van 'Home were a l r e a d y u s i n g swing s h i f t s to enab le t twice the number of c l a s se s to use the rooms a v a i l a b l e . Two other s choo l s , Tecumseh and Mackenzie , were a v o i d i n g t h i s , on ly by u t i l i z -i n g fa r from i d e a l accommodation for some c l a s s e s . They cons idered t h i s 47 s o l u t i o n the l e s s e r o f two e v i l s . I n December 1948, Dr . R-. F . Sharp, Inspec tor of Schools for the Vancouver Board, presented h i s r epor t to the Board on " P o p u l a t i o n Trends i n the G i t y o f Vancouver". A c c o r d i n g to t h i s r e p o r t , one o f the worst h i t areas would be Douglas, where the p o p u l a t i o n peak was expected to begin i n three years and l a s t from ten to twelve yea r s , main ly as a r e s u l t of a new hous ing development i n that a rea . The expected p o p u l a t i o n i n tha t d i s t r i c t , i n 1950, was 100 f i v e - y e a r - o l d s , 100 f o u r - y e a r - o l d s , 253 t h r e e - y e a r - o l d s , 250 two-year -o lds and approximate ly 500 c h i l d r e n under one year . A s i m i l a r , but not q u i t e so se r ious s i t u a t i o n was expected i n the Renfrew area , and s e v e r a l other areas were a l s o expec t ing above normal increases i n s c h o o l -57 age p o p u l a t i o n . This increase appears to have been conf ined to s p e c i f i c areas r a t h e r than be ing a p rov ince-wide phenomenon. Faced w i t h p r o v i d i n g accommodation for these numbers o f c h i l d r e n once they reached compulsory schoo l age, the Board f e l t that expansion o f k inde rga r t en s e r v i c e s was a t the present out of the ques t ion . The r epor t suggested three methods of d e a l i n g w i t h the expected inc rease i n enrolment; swing s h i f t s , which were a l r eady be ing used i n the hardes t pressed areas;, t r anspo r t of s tudents from areas of heavy enrolment to schools w i t h vacant rooms; and the use o f po r t ab l e c lassrooms. Board members f e l t that a l though p r o v i s i o n o f perma-nent b u i l d i n g s was expensive , i t was o f top p r i o r i t y so the t h i r d o p t i o n was r e j e c t e d . They were then faced w i t h two a l t e r n a t i v e s for d e a l i n g w i t h the l a r g e numbers of c h i l d r e n u n t i l the permanent b u i l d i n g s c o u l d be completed. They cons idered buss ing to be the more d i s r u p t i v e of the two a l t e r n a t i v e s and so they decided that swing s h i f t s would cont inue where 48 necessary u n t i l the new. accommodation was a v a i l a b l e . Al though swing s h i f t s were most u n s a t i s f a c t o r y from a l l po in t s o f v iew, i t was perhaps a wise cho ice under the c i rcumstances , , fo r i t forced the Board to go ahead immediately w i t h a comprehensive b u i l d i n g programme. I f e i t h e r a l t e r n a t i v e had been chosen, the Board may have been ab le to convince i t s e l f tha t the problem was not r e a l l y so grave, and so have delayed the b u i l d i n g programme 49 for yea r s . The p r o v i n c i a l government appa ren t ly shared the Board ' s view that more accommodation was e s s e n t i a l a t t h i s t ime, fo r i t s expendi ture on educa t ion increased s i g n i f i c a n t l y , from j u s t over $9 m i l l i o n i n 1946-47, to n e a r l y 50 $26 m i l l i o n i n 1950-51. In tha t year , however, the f e d e r a l government requested that a l l unnecessary expendi ture be c u r t a i l e d i n the i n t e r e s t s o f 58 national defence, and so the p r o v i n c i a l budget for education remained 51 v i r t u a l l y stationary for the following three years. The Greater V i c t o r i a School Board had much the same problems as Van-couver, with a v a s t l y increased school.population but there was also less support of kindergartens from trustees. One or two trustees a c t i v e l y opposed the idea on the grounds that the e x i s t i n g kindergartens were a l l i n th e - V i c t o r i a area and so could not be used equally by a l l Greater V i c t o r i a 52 residents. The shortage of trained teachers was.also a problem and those who were unsympathetic, to kindergartens f e l t that the eight teachers involved with the already established classes would be more useful teaching i n the • , 53 primary grades. There were repeated requests from PTA's throughout the d i s t r i c t for the establishment of more kindergarten classes, just as i n Vancouver, but the Board gave Greater V i c t o r i a parents much the same answer as the Van-couver Board: that expansion of the kindergarten programme1would be con-sidered as classroom space became a v a i l a b l e . Of course, with the increasing number of enrolments, space just did not become-available. In an attempt to accommodate more kindergarten classes, those already established at Oaklands, Oak Bay and West V i c t o r i a Schools went onto a modified swing s h i f t system. This involved the c h i l d r e n attending on alternate weeks rather than the two 54 sessions a day used for higher grades. Kindergartens had always catered for two sessions per day; now a s i n g l e teacher was expected to cope with up to 100 c h i l d r e n i n each two-week period; a formidable task. Nevertheless, this system was continued throughout 1950-51 on a t r i a l basis and was considered s u f f i c i e n t l y successful to be kept i n operation u n t i l the early 59 1960's. The Vancouver School Board was i n i t i a l l y f e a r f u l that the rapid expansion of school accommodation would prevent i t from o f f e r i n g anything more than a basic education to c h i l d r e n of compulsory school-going age. But"within a few years the s i t u a t i o n was under control. In fact, once the p r i n c i p l e of expansion had been accepted, delays i n carrying out the pro-gramme -were caused mainly by physical factors; an over worked Ar c h i t e c t ' s O f f i c e and the actual time involved i n b u i l d i n g . By the summer of 1952, the Board f e l t i t was again i n a p o s i t i o n to consider kindergartens. I t was also spurred on by a l e t t e r from the Community Chest and Council, formerly the Council of. S o c i a l Agencies, which was s t i l l providing as many services as i t was able to the crowded inner c i t y communities. The l e t t e r requested increased kindergarten f a c i l i t i e s throughout•the c i t y and was probably prompted by the fact that the s i x private kindergartens operating i n the Strathcona area were, at this time, unable to cope'with the numbers of pre-school c h i l d r e n applying for admission. The Board r a p i d l y approved the opening of three more kindergartens, pending a v a i l a b l e finance, and i t s Kindergarten Committee strongly recommended that at l e a s t one should be 55 started in.the coming year. Seymour School was chosen and i t s kinder-garten class began operating in September 1952. Further requests for kindergartens continued to be placed before the Vancouver Board, but i n the next three years only two more were opened, at Mount Pleasant and Macdonald Schools, bringing the t o t a l kindergarten enrolment i n Vancouver to about 440, compared with the Grade 1 enrolment 56 of some 6,000. At this point, the p r o v i n c i a l government requested that no more 60 kindergartens be opened u n t i l further notice because of lack of funds and the teacher shortage. The Kindergarten Committee was discharged but the Board continued to keep i t s p r i o r i t y l i s t for new classes up to date for 57 future use. There was no shortage of either permanent or substitute s t a f f i n Vancouver at this time and only the•withdrawal of the government 58 subsidy was now preventing the opening of more kindergartens. When the grant was reinstated i n 1956, seven more classes were opened and the Board f e l t that i t was making s a t i s f a c t o r y progress. I t even began to t a l k about extending to a point where a l l c h i l d r e n of kindergarten age would be offered a place i n the public schools. I t also expressed the hope that the newly established College of Education at the U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia would provide an increasing number of s k i l l e d kindergarten teachers 59 so that this could be done. Meanwhile, requests for enrolment s t i l l exceeded the number of places a v a i l a b l e in some areas. U n t i l the government allowed further classes to be opened, the Board decided to operate, where numbers warranted i t , an alternate week attendance plan i n the same way that.the Greater V i c t o r i a Board had been doing for some years. In 1957-58, the Vancouver School Board found i t s e l f i n constant con-f l i c t with the p r o v i n c i a l government over the opening of new classes. Seven more were opened i n 1957 but then the government once again withdrew it's subsidy. Under the referendum of 1958, the Board committed i t s e l f to including kindergarten rooms i n a l l new school buildings but the government refused to accept them as a shareable cost under the Schools Act even though the Board offered to use them as primary rooms u n t i l the pressure of en-rolment died o f f . 61 A meeting with the M i n i s t e r of Education did l i t t l e to c l e a r up what the Board saw as the ambivalence of the government approach. Board members were s t i l l not c e r t a i n whether the government agreed in p r i n c i p l e with the plan to open kindergartens as soon as space became- a v a i l a b l e . However, i t did appear to the delegates that approval might be given to another seven 61 kindergartens that the Board wished to open. From enrolment figures, however, i t seems as though t h i s approval was not forthcoming. The unwillingness of the government to commit i t s e l f on the subject at this time probably arose from the fact that i n January 1958 i t had appointed a Royal Commission on Education, headed by S.N.F. Chant, Dean of Arts and Sciences at the U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia, and was awaiting the Commission's report before taking any further action. In 1959, the Board f e l t i t could detect something of a change i n the government a t t i t u d e and indeed a new approach to kindergarten education did seem to be d e v e l o p i n g . ^ In 1959,..the Department of Education appointed a committee to i n v e s t i -gate the question of kindergartens. I t was known as the Pre-primary Committee on Education and i t s purpose 5was to investigate this area of education on behalf of the Chant Commission. This purpose^was not divulged at the time, however, and the Vancouver School Board took i t s appointment to mean that the p r o v i n c i a l government was intending to tackle the problem of pre-school education at l a s t . It is probable that the government was interested to a c e r t a i n degree, even i f only because of pressure from School Boards and early childhood educators. But, even i f i t was not, then the r e s u l t s of the research c e r t a i n l y would have kindled i n t e r e s t for they indicated that kindergarten attendance, p a r t i c u l a r l y - p u b l i c school kinder-62 garten attendance, had favourable e f f e c t s on children's subsequent school i 6 3 work. The report also contained s t a t i s t i c s on kindergarten attendance w i t h i n the province. The majority of c h i l d r e n i n public school kindergartens were in Vancouver and Greater V i c t o r i a , but some other school d i s t r i c t s had been providing kindergarten experience for t h e i r under-age chi l d r e n for some time. In the. f i v e years between 1945-51, f i v e other school d i s t r i c t s , Vernon, Central Coast, Prince Rupert, Lake Cowichan and Gourtenay admitted small numbers of kindergarten c h i l d r e n into combined Kindergarten-Grade 1 64 classes. Between 1951-59, eleven d i s t r i c t s did so and of these Peace River South, Lake Cowichan and. Kitimat established two, two and three 65 separate kindergarten classes r e s p e c t i v e l y . In 1959, when the survey was taken, public kindergartens were serving a t o t a l of 3,495 children, or 11 66 per cent of the Grade 1 population. In addition, 215 private kinder-gartens were licensed throughout the province with a.capacity of about 6,000, and 57 further l i c e n s e - a p p l i c a t i o n s were pending.^ The report also gives figures on the t o t a l number of kindergarten-age c h i l d r e n i n both the Vancouver and Greater V i c t o r i a d i s t r i c t s . In V i c t o r i a , there were 1,950, with approximately 880, or 40 per cent, attending public k i n d e r g a r t e n s . ^ In Vancouver, the attendance percentage was s l i g h t l y 69 lower, with 1,690, or 35 per cent attending, out of an estimated 6,000. Despite Vancouver's struggle, then, i t was s t i l l providing a smaller per-centage of kindergarten places than V i c t o r i a , which had not expanded i t s services since the.mid-forties. On the other hand, i t must be born i n mind that a l l V i c t o r i a ' s kindergartens were s t i l l operating on alternate week s h i f t s . That i s , c h i l d r e n attended f i v e sessions every other week. In 63 Vancouver, . the swing s h i f t s were o n l y i n ope ra t i on i n some schools and even then they were not always on an a l t e rna t e 1 week b a s i s . Some c h i l d r e n missed o n l y one'week i n th ree , four or even f i v e depending on the demand for p l a c e s . Neve r the l e s s , i t i s c l e a r tha t p u b l i c k indergar tens were s t i l l c a t e r i n g for on ly a s m a l l number o f the t o t a l p r e - s c h o o l p o p u l a t i o n and even t a k i n g i n t o account the p laces a v a i l a b l e i n p r i v a t e k inderga r t ens and p l a y groups, the p r e - s c h o o l p o p u l a t i o n was not w e l l served." No f o u r - y e a r - o l d s : w e r e a t t e n d i n g p u b l i c k indergar tens a l though the School Ac t had o r i g i n a l l y env i s ioned i n c l u d i n g them. For these younger c h i l d r e n the on ly p r e - s c h o o l exper ience that was a v a i l a b l e ' w a s i n the p r i v a t e es tabl i shments tha t were w i l l i n g to take them and had room to do so. The r epor t o f the P r e - P r i m a r y Committee may have l e d the government to regard k indergar tens w i t h l e s s mi sg iv ings than p r e v i o u s l y , but i t was the recommendations of the Chant Commission tha t l e d them to a c t , and ac t q u i c k l y . The Commission was impressed by the f i n d i n g s o f the P r e - P r i m a r y . Committee, p a r t i c u l a r l y i n regard to the r e sea rch which po in ted to the academic advantages to be gained from k i n d e r g a r t e n a t tendance. The recom-mendations of the Commission, though, were not as s t rong as they might have been. A recommendation tha t p r o v i s i o n of k indergar tens be mandatory would not have been s u r p r i s i n g , c o n s i d e r i n g the support g iven to the p r i n c i p l e o f k i n d e r g a r t e n educa t ion i n the body o f the r e p o r t . However, the Commission d i d no more than recommend tha t School D i s t r i c t s be a l lowed to e s t a b l i s h 70 k i n d e r g a r t e n c l a s se s as they saw f i t . The r epo r t of the Commission was pub l i shed i n 1960, and i n the same year the Schools A c t was once more amended to g ive any Board the r i g h t to e s t a b l i s h k inderga r t ens a t i t s own d i s c r e t i o n fo r c h i l d r e n o f not more than one year below school age. Th i s 64 gave Boards only a l i t t l e more freedom to act than they had had a decade e a r l i e r . But while provision of kindergartens was not yet mandatory, as many of the b r i e f s to the Commission had suggested they should be, at l e a s t i t gave those Boards that wished to, the r i g h t to e s t a b l i s h kindergartens i n a l l t h e i r schools with operating costs shared by the government. This l e g i s l a t i o n was:what the Vancouver School Board, at l e a s t , had been waiting for; by the end of 1961 i t had a t o t a l of 64 classes i n opera-71 t i o n . In the following.year, 107 were operating, which represented at 72 le a s t one class i n each of the D i s t r i c t ' s elementary schools. This provided places for approximately 5,000 child r e n , which was s t i l l less than the estimated five-year-old population. But considering that attendance was voluntary, and many ch i l d r e n s t i l l attended private kindergartens and pre-school groups, i t probably accounted for most five-year-olds whose parents wanted them to attend. Children below the age of f i v e , however, were s t i l l l a r g e l y ignored. The Greater V i c t o r i a Board, on the other hand, established no further classes, even though each kindergarten, teacher was s t i l l dealing w i t h up to 100 c h i l d r e n on week about s h i f t s . This continued u n t i l 1963, then i n the- course of the next two years, kindergartens were opened i n s i x more schools to m a k e a ; t o t a l of 17 at which 74 classes were held on a r o t a t i n g basis. By 1970 the classes were located at 28 d i f f e r e n t schools and most had an enrolment of about 50, enabling about 1,600 c h i l d r e n to have f u l l -73 . time half-day.attendance. Of the other school d i s t r i c t s i n the province, i t is i n t e r e s t i n g to note that some quite-small and i s o l a t e d d i s t r i c t s were o f f e r i n g kindergar-65 ten exper ience to v i r t u a l l y a l l f i v e - y e a r - o l d s who d e s i r e d i t l ong before the Chant Repor t , w h i l e others which were l a r g e and u rban ized o f f e r ed l i t t l e or even none u n t i l 1972'when k i n d e r g a r t e n p r o v i s i o n became mandatory. I n 1961, Cranbrook, P r i n c e t o n , L i l l o o e t , Ocean F a l l s , Cowichan, Courtenay, K i t i m a t and Cres ton D i s t r i c t s were a l l p r o v i d i n g k i n d e r g a r t e n for n e a r l y a l l o f t h e i r f i v e - y e a r - o l d s . The Annual Reports o f the'Department o f E d u c a t i o n : g i v e no reason for or e x p l a n a t i o n o f why t h i s was so. Presumably, the Boards i n these areas cons idered k i n d e r g a r t e n an important par t o f educa t ion and were f i n a n c i a l l y ab le to p rov ide i t . I t must be born i n mind, however, tha t some o f these d i s t r i c t s were q u i t e s m a l l and the number of k i n d e r g a r t e n c h i l d r e n be ing ca te red for i n each ranged.from on ly 60 to " 74 180. Burnaby a l s o began a few c l a s s e s i n 1961, but d i s c o n t i n u e d them a f t e r two yea r s , when a referendum on the k i n d e r g a r t e n ques t ion was l o s t . P rope r ty owners i n tha t d i s t r i c t were u n w i l l i n g to p a y t h e e x t r a cos t s tha t k inderga r t ens would e n t a i l even w i t h the new subs idy . I n the f o l l o w i n g year , P e n t i c t o n , Kamloops,- Sur rey , D e l t a , Richmond, Coqu i t l am and Salmon Arm began c l a s s e s , but o f these on ly Kamloops, Coqu i t l am and Salmon Arm cont inued them for more than a yea r . Expansion i n Coqu i t l am was r a p i d w i t h enrolment c l i m b i n g from 220 i n the f i r s t year to 1,602 i n 1965'and r each ing a peak o f 2,164 i n 1968. Th i s was s e v e r a l hundred h i g h e r than the h ighes t enrolment i n V i c t o r i a , d e s p i t e the f ac t tha t the V i c t o r i a s choo l p o p u l a t i o n was s l i g h t l y h ighe r than tha t o f Coqu i t l am. From the mid-1960's on, more and more d i s t r i c t s o f f e red k i n d e r g a r t e n , u n t i l by 1971, a l l . b u t t en d i s t r i c t s had a t l e a s t some c l a s s e s . Of these ten , e igh t were count ry d i s t r i c t s , most o f which were s m a l l w i t h s c a t t e r e d p o p u l a t i o n s . The two c i t y d i s t r i c t s , Nor th . Vancouver and Richmond, o f f e r e d 66 no kindergarten u n t i l i t became mandatory to do so. This, then, was the educational s i t u a t i o n when, i n 1972, the question of changing the l e g i s l a t i o n regarding kindergartens was again raised' i n B r i t i s h Columbia. The question had been raised many times before i n the l e g i s l a t u r e , but the S o c i a l Credit government, despite i t s acceptance of kindergartens in p r i n c i p l e , had been u n w i l l i n g to act on the matter. With the defeat of the S o c i a l Credit.Party i n 1972, the New Democrats found them-7 6 selves i n a p o s i t i o n to at l a s t move on the kindergarten issue. Although amendments were made to the Schools A c t . i n the f i r s t s i t t i n g of the l e g i s l a t u r e under the New Democrat Party government, i n F a l l 1972, the amendments concerning mandatory provision of kindergartens were not introduced u n t i l the second s i t t i n g i n Spring 1973. There was no opposi-t i o n at a l l on the kindergarten amendments, i n d i c a t i n g that at l a s t there was a consensus on t h i s p a r t i c u l a r aspect of education. The Conservative, L i b e r a l and S o c i a l Credit parties a l l indicated that they would give t h e i r f u l l support, with the f i r s t two expressing pleasure that a c t i o n was at l a s t being t a k e n . ^ Mrs. P.J. Jordan, (SC North Okanagan) expressed opposition to any attempt to make attendance compulsory, but she too was i n favour of . . 78 mandatory provision. The only question that concerned some members from out l y i n g areas was the d i f f i c u l t y of transporting young c h i l d r e n over great distances to 79 attend. However, the government gave assurances that school regulations would allow for an a l t e r n a t i v e form of kindergarten service i n remote areas so that small remote school d i s t r i c t s and t h e i r pupils would not be handi-80 capped. F i n a l l y , with no fuss or fanfare, the l e g i s l a t i o n that had been sought by so many Boards, teachers and parents was passed on A p r i l 17, 1973, 67 t h e . f i n a l day of the second s i t t i n g of the New Democrat government. School D i s t r i c t s were given two years to comply with the l e g i s l a t i o n . There was an immediate increase i n enrolment from 24,217 in 1972-73 to 33,142 in 1973-74. In 1974-75, the deadline for kindergarten provision, there was a further increase to 36,874 but i t is obvious that most Boards were w i l l i n g and able to act within the f i r s t year. I r o n i c a l l y , the kinder-garten population peaked i n the following year at 37,072, and from then on the enrolment slowly declined i n response to the f a l l i n the b i r t h rate 81 that had begun several years previously. The b a t t l e that had been fought for nearly three decades was won just as one of i t s main causes, the post war-population boom, began to disappear. The l e g i s l a t i o n of 1972 is often considered the most important point i n the development of public school kindergartens i n B r i t i s h Columbia. The aim of t h i s chapter has been to show that, although important, i t was only the f i n a l step in the three decade b a t t l e for the i n c l u s i o n of kinder-garten classes in the public school system. The groundwork was l a i d i n the period between the end of World War II and the p u b l i c a t i o n of the Chant Report i n 1960, when concerned educators and laymen worked unceasingly, against the twin b a r r i e r s of government apathy and lack of finance, towards a goal that must often have seemed unattainable. The Chant Report could have had much more e f f e c t than i t did. By the time i t was published, kindergarten was considered much more important than i t had been i n e a r l i e r years, but i t was s t i l l not accepted as an i n t e g r a l part of education. The e l e c t i o n of the New Democratic Party, a f t e r so many years of L i b e r a l , C o a l i t i o n and S o c i a l Credit. Party rule, marked a turning point i n public awareness of the need for government involvement i n areas of s o c i a l 68 concern. Although the New Democratic Party may take the c r e d i t for the enabling l e g i s l a t i o n , the b a t t l e for kindergartens i n B r i t i s h Columbia was fought and won by many individuals who, i n the course of t h i r t y years, a l l contributed to the growing r e a l i z a t i o n that education consists of more than just the 3R's and does not begin magically at age s i x . 69 FOOTNOTES - CHAPTER II •*"Only 12 out o f 119 mothers at three Vancouver nursery schools (probably Strathcona, Gordon House and Alexandra House) were involved i n o f f i c i a l l y recognised war work; Sun, 17 August 1943,p. 13. Canada. Dominion Bureau of S t a t i s t i c s , - Canadian-Labour Force  Estimates 1931-45, p. 19. ^Canada. House of Commons, Debates, 1943, v o l . 4, p. 3063. 4 I b i d . , v o l . 5, pp. 4234-5. -'A.L. Normandin, ed., The Canadian Parliamentary Guide 1944, (Ottawa: Syndicat D'oevres Sociales Limitee, 1944), p. 406. 6Province, 2 March 1943, p. 8; Ibid., 26 February 1944, p. 6; Sun, 2 March 1943, p. 8. „ ^Colonist, 4 March 1943, p. 13; V i c t o r i a Times, 5 February 1944, p. 5. gSun, 25 February 1944, p. 6. 9News Herald, 8 March 1943, p. 12; V i c t o r i a Times, 4 February 1944, p. 3; Province, 17 May 1944, p. h; Ibid., 15 March 1944, p. 4. 1 0 I b i d . , 14 December 1943, p. 12. U I b i d . , 20 August 1943, p. 5; Ibid., 7 September 1943, p. 22. 1 2News Herald, 10 August 1943, p. 5. ^ P r o v i n c e , 17 August 1943, p. 21. l^Sun, 1 September 1943, p. 5; Province, 1 September 1943, p. 7. 1 5VSB Minutes, Meeting held 7 February 1944, pp. .8071-69. • ^ B r i t i s h Columbia. Statutes, ch. 45, sect. 6 (7) 1946. 1 7 V i c t o r i a Times, 15 July 1943, p..16; Colonist, 10 February 1944, p. 12. 1 V i c t o r i a Times, 5 August 1943, p. 7; Ibid., 12 August 1943, p. 8. 1 9 C o l o n i s t , 20 November 1943, p. 8. 2 0 V i c t o r i a Times, 29 October 1943, p. 16. 70 ZJ-The delegation included representatives of James Bay Wartime Housing Centre, V i c t o r i a Nursery School Association, Council of S o c i a l Agencies, Trades and Labour Council, University Womens Club, PTA, Mothers Union, CCF Party, Labour Progressive Party, and the Business and Professional Womens Club; Colonist, 3 December 1943, p. 2; V i c t o r i a Times,. 3 December 1943, p. 9. 2 2 I b i d . , 22 January.1944, p. 6; Colonist, 22 January 1944, p. 7. 2 3 y i c t o r i a Times, 9 February 1944, p. 13. 2 ^ C o l o n i s t , 10 February. 1944, p. 12. ^Although some country d i s t r i c t s began to accept a small number of child r e n i n the next few years, i n i t i a l l y Vancouver and Victoria-were alone i n the province i n considering kindergarten. 26vSB, Minutes, May-August 1943, passim. 2 7 l b i d . , Meeting held 15 July 1946, p. 9410; see below Table 1. ^Kindergartens were opened at.Spring Ridge, Oaklands, S i r James Douglas, V i c t o r i a West, Margaret Jenkins,, Oak Bay, Cloverdale and North Ward Schools. 2 9 y j c t o r i a Times, 20 June 1946, p. 11. 3 0 g r i t i s h Columbia. Department of Education, B u l l e t i n of the Provin-c i a l Summer School of Education, 1945, p. 11. 31G.R. Selman, "A History of the Extension and Adult Education Services of the Univ e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia," (M.A. thesis, U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia, 1963), pp. 167-72. 3 2 i n p a r t i c u l a r , Ada Crump i n Vancouver and Gertrude M c G i l l i n V i c t o r i a . 33province, 20 August 1946, p. 7. 34colonist, 25 June 1948, p. 9. 35E.J.M. Church, "An Evaluation of Preschool I n s t i t u t i o n s i n Canada," Canadian Education 5 (June 1950): 20. 36sun, 22 March 1947, p. 3. 37Gertrude M c G i l l , Co-operative•Play Groups for Pre-School Children (Ottawa: Canadian C i t i z e n s h i p Council, 1947), p. 22. 38yancouver Island Co-operative' ;'Play Groups Association, History of Co-ops, (n.d. n.p.) (mimeograph). 39wycherley, B r i e f History, p. 4. 71 4 0 P r o v i n c e , 9 August 1950, p. 37. 4^Wycherley, B r i e f History, p. 11. 4 2Sun., 10 November 1954, p. 46. ^ G r e a t e r V i c t o r i a School Board, Minutes of the Board of School Trustees, 1947-60. passim, (hereafter c i t e d as GVSB,. Minutes.) 44VSB,- Minutes, 1947-51. passim. 4 ^ I b i d . , Meeting held 17 A p r i l 1950, p. 2088. 4 6 I b i d . , Meeting held 10 March 1947, p. 9775. 47 Ibid., Meeting held 27 September 1948, p. 776. 48 Ibid., Meeting held 20 December 1948, p. 995-4. 49 The t h i r d option was chosen by the Education Department i n South A u s t r a l i a and portable classrooms remained a large percentage of classroom accommodation u n t i l the end of the 1960's. "^Department of Education, Annual Report 1970-71, p. C184. 5 1VSB, Minutes, Meeting held 12 A p r i l 1951, p. 3033. 5 2GVSB, Minutes, Meetings held 18 J u l y 1949, p. 238; 18 January 1950, p. 324; 9 February 1950, p. 332; 6 March 1950, p. 340; 18 June 1951, p. 454. In fact, two of the kindergartens were i n Oak Bay and South Saanich d i s -t r i c t s , but only just outside the old V i c t o r i a boundary. 53 Ibid., Meeting held 2 February 1953. 5 4 I b i d . , Meeting held 14.June 1951, p. 454. 5 5VSB, Minutes, Meeting held 7 J u l y 1952, p. 3892. "^Ibid., Enrolment figures for November 1955, p. 8988; Department of Education, Annual Report 1955-56. 5 7VSB, Minutes, Meeting held 3 October 1955, p. 8748. 58 Ibid., Annual Report of the Assistant Superintendent of the Elementary Department 1955, p. 9157. 59 Ibid., 1956, p. 1719. fin Ibid.,, Meeting held 21 J u l y 1958, p. 822. 61 Ibid., Meeting held 23 June 1958, p. 747. 72 62 Ibid., Meeting held 7 December 1959, p. 1622. 63 B r i t i s h Columbia. Department of Education, The Report of the Pre-Primary Education Committee to the Royal Commission on Education, 1960, chaps. 5-7. (mimeograph) (hereafter c i t e d as Pre-Primary Report). 64 B r i t i s h Columbia. Department of Education, Addenda to the Report of  the Pre-Primary Education Committee to the Royal•Commission on Education, 1960, no. 1. p. 1. (mimeograph) (hereafter c i t e d as Addenda to the Report). ^ I b i d . , no. 1. p. 2. ^ I b i d . , no. 2. p. 2. ^ 7 I b i d . , no. 5. p. 1. ^ I b i d . , no. 8. p. 1. ^ I b i d . , no. 9. p. 1. ^ B r i t i s h Columbia. Department of Education, Report of the Royal  Commission on Education, chairman S.N.F. Chant, 1960, pp. 120-27. (here-a f t e r c i t e d as Chant Report). 7^"VSB, Minutes, Annual Report of Management Committee 1961, p. 1824. 7 2 I b i d . , 1962, p. 1340. 73 See below Table 1. 74 B r i t i s h Columbia. Department of Education, Annual Reports 1961-72. 7 5 I b i d . 7 6 B r i t i s h Columbia. L e g i s l a t i v e Assembly, Hansard. Debates of the  L e g i s l a t i v e Assembly (25 January-18 A p r i l 1973), p. 2618. 7 7 I b i d . , pp. 2617-18. 7 8 I b i d . , p. 1144. 7 9 I b i d . , pp. 1144, 1158. 8 Q I b i d . , p. 2749. . 81 Department of Education, Annual Reports 1972-76. 73 CHAPTER I I I THE DEVELOPMENT OF KINDERGARTEN THEORY IN BRITISH COLUMBIA The previous chapter dealt with the establishment of public school kindergartens i n B r i t i s h Columbia; this chapter w i l l examine the development of the educational theory that was both a cause and an e f f e c t of the growth i n the. number of kindergarten classes i n B r i t i s h Columbia public schools. This i s no simple task, for the educational climate at any given time consists of many d i f f e r e n t points of view which may nevertheless co-exist with l i t t l e f r i c t i o n . There are three d i s t i n c t l e v e l s w i t h i n the educa-t i o n a l h i e r a r c h y . i n which differences i n educational goals may be manifest. F i r s t , at the governmental l e v e l , where the basic l e g i s l a t i o n of the system is formulated. Second, at the School Board l e v e l , where the l e g i s l a t i o n becomes an administrative r e a l i t y . And, t h i r d , at the classroom l e v e l , where the education takes place. A l l three "are t o t a l l y d i s t i n c t and yet t o t a l l y interdependent and a l l must be taken into account i f an o v e r a l l p i c t u r e of the educational climate i s to be obtained. Furthermore, any examination of educational development i n B r i t i s h Columbia must consider contemporary theory and pr a c t i c e elsewhere i n Canada, as w e l l as i n the United States and i n Br i t a i n , , for the growth of kinder-garten education was by no means unique to th i s province i n the years a f t e r the Second World War. This chapter, then, w i l l deal f i r s t with the changing theory and pract i c e of kindergarten education outside of B r i t i s h Columbia and then turn to developments wi t h i n the province. 74 In the U n i t e d S t a t e s , the l a t e 1940's saw the beg inn ing o f an inc rease i n p u b l i c schoo l k i n d e r g a r t e n enrolment. N e i t h Headley est imates tha t by the end o f the decade, 49 per cent o f a l l k indergar ten-aged c h i l d r e n i n the U n i t e d Sta tes were e n r o l l e d i n p u b l i c schoo l kindergar ten.^" The expansion i n the. number o f p u b l i c schoo l k indergar tens ;was p a r t l y a response to i n -creased numbers o f p re - school -aged c h i l d r e n , the vanguard o f the post-war p o p u l a t i o n e x p l o s i o n , and p a r t l y due to . chang ing a t t i t u d e s to k i n d e r g a r t e n educa t ion . The changes i n a t t i t u d e were brought about by inc reased numbers o f r esea rch s t u d i e s d e a l i n g w i t h va r ious aspects o f k i n d e r g a r t e n educa t ion . These s tud ies were main ly concerned w i t h the e f f e c t s o f k i n d e r g a r t e n at tendance on the c h i l d ' s l a t e r achievement i n s c h o o l . The r e s u l t s gener-a l l y i n d i c a t e d tha t the k inderga r t en ,was , i n f a c t , b e n e f i c i a l i n promoting 2 readiness for r ead ing , w r i t i n g and number s k i l l s . As a r e s u l t , the r o l e of k i n d e r g a r t e n as a p repara tory c l a s s for Grade 1, and, more s p e c i f i c a l l y , as a promoter o f r ead ing and number' r ead iness , became dominant i n d i s -cuss ions o f e a r l y ch i ldhood educa t ion . Weber i d e n t i f i e s t h i s push towards the more formal use of the k i n d e r -gar ten year as coming l a r g e l y from re sea rche r s , subjec t s p e c i a l i s t s and a d m i n i s t r a t o r s , r a t h e r than from k i n d e r g a r t e n teachers themselves. She sees the pressure exer ted by the former as p u t t i n g k i n d e r g a r t e n teachers on the defens ive and the re fo re p reven t ing the development o f c u r r i c u l u m 3 change from w i t h i n t h e i r r anks . C e r t a i n l y , u n t i l the e a r l y 1960 ' s , there were no major leads from w i t h i n the k i n d e r g a r t e n movement.to a l t e r the c u r r i c u l u m that had been developed i n the f i r s t two decades o f the twen t i e th cen tury . 75 In the twenty years a f t e r the Second World War, kindergarten teachers and supervisors did put much e f f o r t into explaining and i n t e r p r e t i n g the aims of the kindergarten to the general public. In 1930, the International Kindergarten Union and the National Council of Primary Education had amalgamated to form the Association for Childhood Education International and the Journal of the Association, Childhood Education, was perhaps the leading forum for current opinion and i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of kindergarten philosophy. The l i t e r a t u r e of kindergarten supporters i n th i s period tended to be generalized, sometimes to the point of vagueness: perhaps p a r t l y as a reaction to the very s p e c i f i c goals of those who saw kindergarten as no more than a preparation for the f i r s t grade. The emphasis, i n both text books and a r t i c l e s , - was on the kindergarten year as a foundation for further learning. But the importance of l i v i n g f u l l y and r i c h l y i n the present was also noted. A l l the ch i l d ' s powers, physical, emotional, mental and s o c i a l were perceived as being developed,• with the greater emphasis being placed on the s o c i a l and emotional. The curriculum was seen as being "as broad as l i f e i t s e l f " with the major aim being to help every c h i l d make the best 4 possible adjustment to l i f e . Kingergarten teachers agreed r e a d i l y that i n t h e i r classrooms c h i l d r e n learned "reading readiness" but t h e i r under-standing of the term was far broader and less, formal than that of people who wanted pre-reading s k i l l s a c t i v e l y taught to pre-schoolers. U n t i l the end of the 1950's, these opposing positions on the type of i n t e l l e c t u a l content i n the curriculum formed the main basis of debate on the subject. During t h i s period public school kindergarten enrolment continued to increase slowly, for even i f there was no consensus on kinder-.76 garten curriculum, there seemed to be agreement on the fact that i t should become a part of the school system. Headley estimates that 52 per cent of a l l kindergarten-aged c h i l d r e n i n the United States attended public school kindergartens by 1962. Those enrolled i n private and parochial school kindergartens brought the number up to 65 per cent."* Two occurrences that i n i t i a l l y lay outside the f i e l d of educational i n t e r e s t , also came to have far reaching e f f e c t s on American societ y i n general and on early childhood education i n p a r t i c u l a r . The f i r s t was the launching of Sputnik 1 by the U.S.S.R. This event impressed upon many Americans the increasingly rapid pace at which s c i e n t i f i c knowledge was advancing. They f e l t that i f the United States was to draw even with and eventually pass Russia i n technological expertise, then a new look must be taken at the education system. To many, an early academic push, beginning 7 i n the kindergarten year was the answer to the Space Age speed-up. This a t t i t u d e was; strengthened by the work being done at the same time by cognitive psychologists l i k e J. McVicar Hunt, Benjamin Bloom and Jerome Bruner. Their research pointed strongly towards the responsiveness of i n t e l l i g e n c e to experience. Growing f a m i l i a r i t y i n America with the g ideas of Jean Piaget further influenced t h i s point of view. The second i n f l u e n c t i a l factor was the c i v i l r i g h t s struggle which began to dramatize the problems of minority groups and the poor i n the 1960's. Educational concern came to be framed i n the language of a "war 9 on poverty". The Headstart Program of 1965 directed massive federal funding into early childhood education for impoverished sections of society. Along with the intervention e f f o r t s , much research was begun, to explore 10 the r e l a t i o n s h i p s of early experience, poverty and compensatory education. 77 From these developed the idea of i n t e l l e c t u a l stimulation i n the kinder-garten year, not only for the poor, or for minority groups, but for a l l chi l d r e n . As i n the past, i n t e l l e c t u a l stimulation was again interpreted l a r g e l y as increased emphasis on early reading, w r i t i n g and number work. Some experimental programs had c h i l d r e n reading at three years of age, but many kindergarten teachers increased the emphasis on formal work only ' 11 s l i g h t l y . Nevertheless, this did e f f e c t the classroom climate and the change-was heightened by a new approach to curriculum. Previously, the c h i l d ' s spontaneous interests had been advocated as the main guide, to curriculum planning, but i t was now f e l t by some educators that these interests could not b e " r e l i e d upon to lead the c h i l d into a l l areas of 12 knowledge necessary i n a technological world. Therefore,. "needs" c u r r i -cula were developed to lead the c h i l d into areas perceived as necessary for i t s future education. By the l a t e 1960's, a wide range of programs, from the t r a d i t i o n a l s o c i a l l y oriented kindergarten to highly experimental c o g n i t i v e l y oriented programs, were in operation throughout the country. The mainstream of philosophy and practice, perhaps best represented by ACEI, s t i l l strongly stressed " f u l l f i l m e n t " education, in, which the three values of s e l f - a c t u a l i -13 zation, c r e a t i v i t y and relevance were of greatest importance. Neverthe-less,, i t would appear that with the increased acceptance of early childhood education as a v i t a l part of t o t a l education, the kindergarten was drawn closer to the primary grades and the beginnings of formal work, p a r t i c u l a r l y i n the cognitive area, were to be found more and more in the kindergarten curriculum. Within B r i t i s h Columbia, the gradual change i n emphasis from a s o c i a l l y 78 oriented to a c o g n i t i v e l y oriented kindergarten curriculum took place i n much the same way and at much the same time as i n the United States. This was because B r i t i s h Columbia educators tended to look f i r s t to the United States whenever the question of kindergarten was raised. They did so when the question of c h i l d care was raised i n the mid-1940's and continued to do so, well into the 1960's. Many Americans, too, personally influenced the kindergarten movement i n the province. For instance, Helen Heffernan of the Bureau of Elementary Education i n C a l i f o r n i a v i s i t e d the province r e g u l a r l y i n the 1960's arid worked c l o s e l y with the College of Education at 14 UBC. B r i t a i n , too, provided a model to some extent; i t s infant schools were b r i e f l y considered as a pattern for s i m i l a r schools i n . B r i t i s h Columbia. Canada i t s e l f i s the one place that, with few exceptions, was not considered when the question of kindergartens was raised. Immediately a f t e r the war, only Ontario and Quebec had any kindergartens, but i n t h e former.they had been i n existence for more than h a l f a century. Much help and information could have been gained from t h i s source, but i t was almost t o t a l l y ignored. It was not u n t i l the l a t e 1960's and early 1970's, when Alberta and Saskatchewan began to consider the problem of pre-school education, that B r i t i s h Columbia took much notice of what was happening elsewhere i n Canada. The choice of half-day, voluntary kindergartens i n B r i t i s h Columbia was ulti m a t e l y made by the Department of Education. The fact that i t controlled, and i n subsequent years sometimes withheld, finance for these classes also determined, i n d i r e c t l y , the fact that they would b e l i m i t e d for some years,, i n prac t i c e i f not i n p r i n c i p l e , to c h i l d r e n of f i v e years of age i n r e l a t i v e l y crowded, low income, inner suburban areas. This does 79 not appear to have been a conscious p o l i c y on the part of the government, but rather to have stemmed from i t s unwillingness to give Boards more than token financing for many years. Boards were therefore forced to provide only for the most needy. The Kindergarten Manual was the f i r s t c l e a r l y defined example of Department of Education p o l i c y on kindergartens. I t was published in 1954, almost a decade a f t e r the f i r s t kindergarten classes began. Some guide-l i n e s for Boards and teachers must have existed p r i o r to this but i f so •1 ft they are no longer a v a i l a b l e . It seems u n l i k e l y that the'Department would allow classes to continue for such a long period without some kind of d i r e c t i o n . The Manual was prepared by a committee of V i c t o r i a educators under the auspices of the Curriculum D i v i s i o n of the Department of Educa-ti o n . Individual committee members are not mentioned i n the Acknowledge-ment but included Marian James, Director of Primary Education for the V i c t o r i a School Board, and V i c t o r i a teachers Dorothy Toader and Winette Copeland. The fact that al'l/jihe Committee members were working i n the f i e l d makes the Manual not only a guide to what the Department wanted to take place-within kindergarten classrooms, but also a r e f l e c t i o n of what was already taking place. The Manual was intended as a guide for teachers, encompassing not only the philosophy and educational goals of the kindergarten, but also including suggestions for the physical set-up and day to day administration of a c l a s s . I t was also a resource book of ideas, materials and l i t e r a t u r e for teachers. I t opened with a series of statements about the purpose of kindergarten: 80 The Kindergarten is organized to. promote the f u l l de-velopment of the c h i l d through his natural a c t i v i t i e s . The Kindergarten gives the c h i l d the opportunity of working, playing, and l i v i n g with c h i l d r e n of his own age. The purpose of the Kindergarten year is to ensure the maximum growth of each c h i l d , p h y s i c a l l y , s o c i a l l y , emotionally, as an i n d i v i d u a l and as a member of a group. The Kindergarten is planned-To form a bridge between home and school. To provide a happy, wholesome, a t t r a c t i v e , i n t e r e s t i n g , homelike s e t t i n g which introduces the c h i l d n a t u r a l l y to a complex environment of persons, materials, and a c t i v i t i e s . To lay the foundations of good s o c i a l behaviour. To meet the c h i l d ' s natural need for companionship and a s s o c i a t i o n with others of his own age. To meet the educational needs of c h i l d r e n between the ages of four and s i x . To develop readiness for systematic i n s t r u c t i o n i n basic s k i l l s . • To develop valuable habits, attitudes and apprecia-t ions. To help c h i l d r e n to l i v e , work, and play acceptably with others.18 This was followed by two paragraphs on the kindergarten c h i l d and a f u l l 19 page on the kindergarten teacher. Much stress was placed on the impor-tance of a free and unstructured programme i n the kindergarten. There was no hint of a set curriculum or formal studies; rather the kindergarten was intended as a warm, open environment where the c h i l d , with the guidance and support of an equally warm and approachable teacher, could explore, discover and grow at his own pace. There was no hint of the philosophy, put forward a few years e a r l i e r by. the V i c t o r i a School Board, that the kindergarten would be a downward extension of the elementary school i n which "babies" would be turned into " p u p i l s " i n preparation for t h e i r 20 embarcation on the all-important business of formal learning. The committee members did see the kindergarten, to some extent, as a downward extension of the primary grades. But they also saw i t equally as an upward 81 extension of the informal learning that takes place from b i r t h onwards. Their aim seems to have been to develop the kindergarten as a bridge between what many educators and laymen saw as two d i f f e r e n t worlds; the home and the school. There was no mention of the use of kindergarten as a remedial experience for c h i l d r e n from deprived or under-privileged homes, although this had been one of the arguments put forward i n i t s favourwhen pre-school f a c i l i t i e s were i n i t i a l l y c a l l e d for. Formal introduction of reading, w r i t i n g and s p e l l i n g were also most pointedly omitted from a l l discussion throughout.the.Manual. A chapter was assigned to the various subject areas that the c h i l d would be introduced to i n his year at kinder-garten: s o c i a l studies, science, language, music and a r t . The c h i l d ' s immediate environment and experiences both i n kindergarten and out, were put forward as the basis for learning i n these areas. Examples of learning experiences were included to i l l u s t r a t e the informal nature of teaching at this l e v e l . The f i n a l chapter i n the book was l i s t e d i n the Table of Contents as. "Reading, Writing and S p e l l i n g " , but the chapter i t s e l f l e f t no doubt as to the place of such work i n the kindergarten. I t was a si n g l e paragraph placed i n the centre of the f i n a l page. I t stated s u c c i n c t l y : Reading, Writing and S p e l l i n g . There should be no formal teaching of these t o o l sub-jects i n the Kindergarten. The a l e r t teacher w i l l see that the c h i l d has many experiences which w i l l broaden his i n t e r e s t s and create i n him.a desire to read, write and s p e l l . He may learn i n c i d e n t l y to recognise a number of words, but no attempt should be made to give systematic i n s t r u c t i o n i n reading.?1 This a t t i t u d e , with i t s emphasis on the ch i l d ' s freedom to explore, follow his own interests and develop at his own pace and i n his own way can be traced d i r e c t l y from the o r i g i n a l concepts of Froebel v i a "progres-s i v e " kindergartners such as Patty Smith H i l l . It was also very much i n 82 l i n e with current kindergarten theory i n the United States at the time, which stressed the importance of s o c i a l and emotional, rather than i n t e l -l e c t u a l development. But despite the endeavours of those'who believed i n a kindergarten programme as the best form of education for the young c h i l d , many educators were s t i l l concerned primarily-with r e s u l t s . For them, the ultimate aim of schooling seemed to be to push a c h i l d , as fast as possible, through a set curriculum, although very r a r e l y is any reason given for this haste. An a r t i c l e i n the B^  C. .Teacher, i n 1955, i l l u s t r a t e s t h i s l i n e of thought. H.J. Beairsto, P r i n c i p a l of Vernon Elementary School, took a few paragraphs from the Programmes of Study for the.Primary Grades and for the Inter-mediate Grades of the Elementary Schools of B r i t i s h Columbia, as j u s t i f i c a -t i o n for an experimental programme of "ac c e l e r a t i o n " and "deceleration" i n 22 schooling. His quotation from the Programme of Studies reads as follows: Pupils should achieve t h e i r maximum l e v e l of t h i r d year performance, or i n other words they should be ready to undertake s a t i s f a c t o r i l y the work prescribed for Grade IV, i n from two to four years.23 In order to allow c h i l d r e n to f i n i s h t h e i r primary work i n two, three or four years, depending on t h e i r a b i l i t y , the t r a d i t i o n a l system of annual grade promotions was a l t e r e d at his school by having fast learners i n Grade 1 complete the Grade 1 course plus h a l f of the: Grade .2 course in one year. They were then promoted to Grade 3 where they completed the second h a l f of the Grade 2 course plus the Grade 3 course.in the second year. A s i m i l a r system was i n force i n Grades 4-6, although Beairsto does suggest that a c h i l d should only be accelerated i n one of the sequences. Although arrangements were made for those c h i l d r e n who would require either three or four years to complete the primary programme,, the main 83 emphasis throughout the-whole a r t i c l e was on those c h i l d r e n who could be accelerated. Even the t i t l e of the a r t i c l e stressed t h i s and although no e x p l i c i t judgement was made, i t was implied that to be a fast learner was good but to be slow was, i f not bad, at least a b i t of a nuisance. However, there was no.mention of why a c h i l d should be accelerated i n t h i s way except for the implied reason that i t was "good" to get thework done i n a shorter time. The l e t t e r which the school sent out to parents of childrenwho were considered s u i t a b l e for the accelerated programme stated: In grouping children, a l l f a c t o r s . . . should be taken into consideration. Where several of these factors are favourable, a c e r t a i n degree of. a c c e l e r a t i o n i n school work should be possible and in some cases even desirable. Under such circumstances, however, some parents prefer to have t h e i r c h i l d r e n progress at the regular school rate of one grade per year and allow him the opportunity of enriching h i s l i v i n g with out of school a c t i v i t i e s . 2 4 It is not s u r p r i s i n g that with such an i m p l i c i t value judgement emanating from the school s t a f f , that most'parents allowed t h e i r s o - c a l l e d brighter c h i l d r e n to be accelerated. There was no mention, however, of the parents even being contacted i f i t was f e l t that the c h i l d required four years to complete the programme. It was i n the decelerated programme that Beairsto perceived the kinder-garten as being of most use. A l l c h i l d r e n i n i t i a l l y entered the kinder-garten class, but a f t e r two weeks they were tested and the "slow learners" i d e n t i f i e d . These would then spend a year i n the kindergarten while the rest would be placed i n e i t h e r a normal or accelerated Grade 1 c l a s s , according to t h e i r a b i l i t y . I t i s c l e a r that i n such a s i t u a t i o n , the a t t i t u d e to and r e s u l t s obtained from the kindergarten class would be far removed from those i n a 84 c l a s s conducted by a member o f the committee which wrote t h e . K i n d e r g a r t e n  Manual . To B e a i r s t o , s c h o o l i n g appears to have been s imp ly a process that the c h i l d must get through, and the qu icke r the b e t t e r . E v e r y t h i n g e l s e must be secondary to t h i s g o a l , i n c l u d i n g "the oppor tun i ty o f e n r i c h i n g l i v i n g w i t h out o f schoo l a c t i v i t i e s . " C e r t a i n l y there appears to have been no thought o f e n r i c h i n g l i v i n g through i n - s e h o o l a c t i v i t i e s . Th i s a r t i c l e has been g iven more a t t e n t i o n than i t perhaps war ran t s . Vernon Elementary was a s i n g l e s c h o o l , and not n e c e s s a r i l y r e p r e s e n t a t i v e o f educa t i ona l thought. But a t t h i s t ime, the subjec t o f a c c e l e r a t i o n came under c o n s i d e r a b l e d i s c u s s i o n and i t was Departmental p o l i c y to encourage exper imenta t ion i n i n d i v i d u a l s choo l s . Formal r epor t s o f such p ro j ec t s 25 were not r e q u i r e d , however, and no record 'was kept o f those under taken. There have always been those who have spoken aga ins t k i n d e r g a r t e n and who have emphasised the importance of formal s c h o o l i n g i n the e a r l y yea r s . I f e e l i t i s important to show tha t not on ly these people , but o the r s , l i k e the teachers a t Vernon Elementary?" who operated a k i n d e r g a r t e n themselves and were the re fo re n o m i n a l l y i n favour of k inde rga r t ens , • were fa r removed i n ph i losophy from thosewho understood and p r a c t i s e d the k i n d e r g a r t e n ph i losophy as s t a t e d i n the Manual . Two B r i t i s h Columbia j o u r n a l s , the B . C . Parent-Teacher and the B . C . Teacher, can be cons idered r e p r e s e n t a t i v e of l o c a l educa t i ona l thought, both from the p r o f e s s i o n a l and p a r e n t a l p o i n t o f v iew, from the 1940's to 26 the 1960 ' s . The former ceased p u b l i c a t i o n towards the end o f the 1960's but the l a t t e r i s s t i l l p u b l i s h e d . Both had a wide c i r c u l a t i o n i n the p rov ince i n the p e r i o d under c o n s i d e r a t i o n , and encouraged c o n t r i b u t i o n s from readers . Desp i te the genera l i n t e r e s t i n p r e - s c h o o l educa t ion a t the 85 time, less than a dozen a r t i c l e s on the subject appear i n these journals. Those that were printed appear a f t e r a l i m i t e d number of public school kindergartens had been opened, rather than i n the ea r l y years when there was general debate over whether or not they should be established. The f i r s t a r t i c l e on kindergartens to appear i n the B.C. Teacher was 27 printed i n 1948. It was a one page a r t i c l e which dealt simply with the fact that several kindergartens had been opened i n V i c t o r i a , and described some of the a c t i v i t i e s that took place i n the classes, accompanied by remarks from Marian James, Primary Supervisor, on t h e i r educational s i g n i -ficance. I t ended with the hope that soon there would be s u f f i c i e n t kindergartens for a l l "youngsters" to attend. In the next twelve years, only one further a r t i c l e d i r e c t l y concerned 28 with kindergarten appeared i n the journal. Written by Marian James, i t was reprinted from the January-February 1954 issue of the B.C. Parent-Teacher. I t strongly emphasised the idea that readiness for kindergarten is not a matter of chronological age, but rather the r e s u l t of an important phase of the ch i l d ' s education; that which is c a r r i e d out in the home by the parents i n the f i r s t years of l i f e . The B.C. Parent-Teacher, made s u r p r i s i n g l y l i t t l e mention of kinder-garten, considering the strong advocacy, by PTA's, for the establishment of pre-school f a c i l i t i e s . In early 1955, an a r t i c l e w r i t t e n by Kathleen C o l l i n s , Primary Supervisor for Burnaby, urged parents to consider care-f u l l y before sending t h e i r under six-year-old. c h i l d r e n to school. At th i s stage Burnaby had no public school kindergartens but was obviously worried by the numbers of parents wishing t h e i r c h i l d r e n to; attend school as soon as possible. Mention is made of c h i l d r e n hating school "because they were 86 not p h y s i c a l l y ready to accept the tremendous r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s of learning to read and write" and of teachers "begging parents to keep a five-and a h a l f year old home for another few months to help him develop enough to be 29 ready'.3for school•: 1 1 : The school, the a r t i c l e claimed, could not be blamed for the s i t u a t i o n i f the c h i l d r e n were sent to school too young, but on the other hand the a r t i c l e gave no intimation that the school should perhaps consider catering for younger chil d r e n . In a l a t e r issue, C o l l i n s again dealt with the topic of readiness for 30 school. This a r t i c l e was somewhat s i m i l a r to the e a r l i e r one by. James, except for the fact that i t concerned i t s e l f with c h i l d r e n a year older and about to enter Grade 1. There was also more emphasis on the c h i l d ' s knowledge of simple facts, such as name and address, and personal behaviour and habits. The general experiences of l i v i n g and exploring the world, that were so important to James, did not seem to concern C o l l i n s at a l l . In the previous issue of the journal, an a r t i c l e had appeared-which described the three types of pre-school experience a v a i l a b l e to c h i l d r e n i n the Greater Vancouver area, namely, public school kindergarten, private 31 kindergarten and play groups. ' I t went on to describe the five-year-old from a physical, s o c i a l , emotional and mental developmental point of view and to explain how kindergarten was e s p e c i a l l y organized to cater for the five-year-old's developmental needs. Whether C o l l i n s ' a r t i c l e was intended as an answer is impossible to say, but the two a r t i c l e s c e r t a i n l y took an opposite view on how the five-year-old could best be prepared for Grade 1. The Report of the Royal Commission on Education, more popularly known as the Chant Report, was published i n 1960. I t marked an important point i n the development of public school kindergartens i n B r i t i s h Columbia. The 87 Commission's c a l l for b r i e f s from the public provided an opportunity for both educators and laymen to express t h e i r opinions and aims on the subject of kindergartens. The general tone of the Report was very much i n l i n e with .educational thought in the United States at the time. I t has already been mentioned that the movement i n that country, from the l a t e 1950's onward, was' towards an early s t a r t i n education. The Chant recommendations, too, were l a r g e l y concerned with increasing academic excellence by beginning formal work as early, as possible, and c u t t i n g back on subjects considered academically unnecessary. The b r i e f s presented to the Commission on pre-school education, however, were s t i l l very much oriented towards the philosophy being put into p r a c t i c e i n public school kindergartens; a philosophy that was s t i l l emphasising s o c i a l and emotional, rather than i n t e l l e c t u a l factors. Perhaps this point of view impressed the Commis-sioners to some extent, for although the report strongly supported kinder-garten as an excellent and important beginning to public education, i t did not go so far as recommending that kindergarten classes be made an i n t e g r a l part of the system. Instead, i t simply recommended that School Boards be given the r i g h t to open kindergartens as they saw f i t and be given finan-c i a l backing to do so. A short examination of some of the b r i e f s submitted to the Commission w i l l i l l u s t r a t e the climate of opinion at the time. Of the more than forty b r i e f s dealing with pre-school education, only three urged that kindergartens had no place i n the public school system. Two b r i e f s , submitted by private i n d i v i d u a l s , f e l t that parents should be responsible for t h e i r own c h i l d r e n during the pre-school years, that c h i l d r e n would gain p h y s i c a l l y by not beginning school u n t i l age seven and 88 would, moreover, escape being subjected to "undesirable conduct from older 32 p u p i l s . " The t h i r d was from the Intermunicipal Committee of Greater V i c t o r i a , a body representing the four o r i g i n a l m u n i c i p a l i t i e s that had amalgamated in 1946 to form Greater V i c t o r i a . I t revived the old argument, peculiar to V i c t o r i a , that kindergartens should be a v a i l a b l e to a l l c h i l d -33 ren, or none. A large majority of the b r i e f s consisted of no more than a short l e t t e r which did l i t t l e more than recommend the i n c l u s i o n of kindergartens as an i n t e g r a l part of the school system, with perhaps some very general remarks about the purpose and benefits of such.classes. A number of the longer b r i e f s , however, made t h e i r points most s p e c i f i c a l l y , and while t h e i r general recommendations are u s u a l l y s i m i l a r , the philosophy and i n t e n t behind them are often quite remarkable for t h e i r difference. The B r i t i s h Columbia Teachers Federation, for instance, revived the idea that had appealed to the Vancouver School Board f i f t e e n years p r e v i -ously; that primary schools, including K-Gr 3 classes, should be estab-34 lished, separate from the elementary schools. This would be of p a r t i c u -l a r benefit i n the urban areas, the b r i e f stated, where primary teachers working i n the more f l e x i b l e organization of small separate schools could bring a unity of purpose and d i v e r s i t y of talents to bear on the s o c i a l and academic needs of young children. D i s c i p l i n e could then be based on an understanding of the emotional as well as the s o c i a l needs of the children. The primary school would be a safe and warm environment that would generate a f e e l i n g of s e c u r i t y i n the small c h i l d . Although not openly stated, the idea behind t h i s seemed to be not only to include kindergarten as a part of the system, but also to extend the kindergarten philosophy upwards into 89 the f i r s t three grades to replace the heavy emphasis on academic work found i n some primary schools. The b r i e f was prepared by groups of teachers working under the supervision of a B r i e f Committee. No kindergarten teachers appear to have been members of any. of the sub-committees but there was c e r t a i n l y input from primary teachers, some of whom were represented 35 on the Curriculum Committee. I t is impossible to say, however, just how much they influenced the f i n a l recommendations of the b r i e f . The push towards early academic work has been mentioned previously i n regard to the experimental programme at Vernon Elementary School i n 1955. It appears again i n the b r i e f from people i n ; t h e Sechelt D i s t r i c t , • which suggested an accelerated programme for those c h i l d r e n with academic 36 aptitude, and a modified regular programme for slow.learners. -The l a t t e r was to include kindergartens which five-year-old c h i l d r e n might attend u n t i l a readiness test for Grade 1 was passed, and which would re-t a i n six-year-olds who were not yet able to pass the test. The kinder-garten programme, the b r i e f suggested, should be oriented towards prepar-ing the c h i l d for Grade 1-work as soon as possible, with much pre-reading and number work and the development of habits and behaviour necessary i n the primary grades. No mention i s made of s o c i a l or emotional develop-ment . Of the School Boards that made submissions, two are of p a r t i c u l a r i n t e r e s t . The Vancouver School Board b r i e f was extensive and dealt i n d e t a i l with many s p e c i a l i z e d areas of education, but the subject of kinder-37 gartens was t o t a l l y ignored. No reason for the omission is given, which seems strange considering the e f f o r t s the Board had been making over the past f i f t e e n years to increase i t s number of classes. The Vancouver Parent 90 Teacher Committee, however, expressed the f r u s t r a t i o n that had been f e l t w i t h i n the d i s t r i c t for so many years. Its b r i e f pointed out that Vancouver PTA's had been requesting kindergartens for more than twenty years through l e t t e r s and delegations to t h e i r School Board. I t complained about the action of the Department of Education i n h a l t i n g further expansion. "In view of the known values of kindergartens," i t stated, "and in view of the widespread demand for kindergartens, we cannot understand the Department of Education's a c t i o n i n disallowing our School Board's request to open seven more kindergarten classes this year as a further step i n making them c i t y wide." The Committee's aim was to have one class per f i f t y c h i l d r e n i n 3 8 every elementary school and primary annex. On.the•other hand, the North Vancouver School Board, which was not to open i t s f i r s t kindergarten class u n t i l 1973, when pr o v i s i o n of kindergar-ten became mandatory, did request that kindergartens be. made a part of the 39 school system. The b r i e f mentioned the e f f o r t s of some parents to f i l l the gap i n the education system by sending t h e i r c h i l d r e n to private kinder-gartens. I t also mentioned the r o l e that Co-op Play Groups were playing but pointed out that these f a c i l i t i e s were not under the j u r i s d i c t i o n of the Department of Education, nor did a l l c h i l d r e n attend them, and there-fore, t h e i r e f f e c t was not a l l that could be desired. The b r i e f of the B r i t i s h Columbia. Preschool Education A s s o c i a t i o n was, not s u r p r i s i n g l y , very much i n l i n e with the philosophy of those kinder-gartens already functioning. Its members were almost e x c l u s i v e l y connected with private kindergartens and play groups. During the 1950's the Associa-t i o n was very active, but by the mid-sixties i t had.become moribund. I t should not be confused with the present B r i t i s h Columbia. Preschool Teachers' 91 Association which was not created u n t i l 1970. The b r i e f c a l l e d for the provision of public school kindergartens for a l l ch i l d r e n aged four to s i x , rather than just for five-year-olds. The b e l i e f of the Association was: that s k i l l s of democratic l i v i n g are best i n i t i a t e d at a time when the individual's l i f e i s r e l a t i v e l y free from the demands of formal education, i e . before the s i x t h year... They include respect for others, co-operative e f f o r t , appreciation of deferred values, f a i r play, i n d i v i d u a l freedom, and r e s p o n s i b i l i t y and s e l f - r e l i a n c e . I f education is concerned with the enhancement of the i n d i v i d u a l at a l l ages and with developing a b i l i t i e s , understanding and t r a i t s which he needs as a happy and contributing member of society, we must provide for this younger group.^ The b r i e f also pointed out that the upper primary grades should continue "those aspects of the kindergarten programme which w i l l centre around the t o t a l growth needs of the c h i l d . " The longest submission by far, concerning pre-school education, came from the Co-operative Play Groups Association, which at that time consisted 41 of 52 play groups i n the Vancouver Island and Greater Vancouver areas. The Association was very, eager to expand i t s services, but most of i t s plans had no connection with public school kindergartens. Rather, the Association saw i t s future i n providing a separate service, equally valuable and professional, but outside of the school system. To t h i s end i t made lengthy recommendations which can be summarized as follows: 1. That the Department of Education be the responsible body in a l l matters pertaining to pre-school education. 2. That the Department use i t s administrative f a c i l i t i e s for t r a i n i n g and c e r t i f i c a t i o n of teachers, and curriculum, and maintenance of standards, through the establishment of a Preschool Education Board with repre-sentation from a l l bodies concerned with young chil d r e n . 3. That a c h i l d development centre be set up at UBC for the t r a i n i n g of 92 teachers and parents, and for research. From this i t can be seen that the A s s o c i a t i o n i n B r i t i s h Columbia had not only a well defined philosophy of pre-school education, but also a p r a c t i c a l plan to implement i t s aims and the commitment to carry them out. Its b r i e f , however, had no e f f e c t on the f i n a l report of the Commission. The b r i e f of the Nursery School Association of V i c t o r i a is also some-what oriented away from public school kindergartens. The Association had been established i n 1943, to act as a research and co-ordinating body for the nursery school movement. Its main goal was s t i l l the establishment of f u l l day nursery schools w i t h ' f u l l y trained s t a f f and standardized buildings, grounds, programmes and equipment, i n the t r a d i t i o n of the Merrill-Palmer and Columbia U n i v e r s i t y nursery schools. The b r i e f examined, i n some de t a i l , , the kindergarten and play group f a c i l i t i e s a v a i l a b l e in the province, and pointed out that lack of trained teachers and s u f f i c i e n t supervision by the government had led to some centres being of a lower than acceptable standard. I t therefore recommended: 1. The establishment of a Demonstration Development Centre ( i n the form of a nursery school) at UBC, to be used as a t r a i n i n g centre and a model for equipment and programming. 2. That standards of t r a i n i n g for a l l supervisors of pre-school groups be ' l a i d down under the Schools Act. 3. That where play groups existed i n any large numbers, an advisor be appointed to v i s i t and advise on problems i n programming,, supervision, . 42 and parent education. These l a s t two Associations, then, although not d i r e c t l y interested i n public school kindergartens, were most concerned about the q u a l i t y of pre-93 school experience•available i n the private sector, and strongly desired that i t should be brought up to a professional standard equal to that a v a i l a b l e i n the public schools. The Report of the Pre-Primary Education Committee which made such a strong impression on the Chant Commission i s i n t e r e s t i n g from several points of view; i t i l l u s t r a t e s the thinking of the Minist e r of Education, the Hon. L e s l i e H.. Peterson, that of the Department o f f i c i a l s and that of teachers in the f i e l d . These three attitudes d i f f e r quite s i g n i f i c a n t l y but seem to follow a pattern that recurs throughout the h i s t o r y of kindergarten i n the province i n the post war years; namely, that those with d i r e c t contact with young children, whether teachers or parents, were the strongest supporters of kindergarten, while those i n administrative positions, i f . they were i n favour of the idea, at a l l , supported i t more i n p r i n c i p l e than i n prac t i c e . And the higher they were i n the administrative hierarchy the more they seemed to be i n c l i n e d towards the p r i n c i p l e rather than the practive. The terms of reference of the Committee-were set out in a l e t t e r from the Minister to the Chairman of the Vancouver School Board i n Ju l y 1958 as follows: I have always regarded kindergarten i n s t r u c t i o n to be -educationally desirable. While i t cannot be regarded as a necessity, I have f e l t correct to say that i s is an enrichment of the basic programme. There i s , however, a basic c o n f l i c t of professional opinion concerning the educational advantages that accrue from kindergarten i n s t r u c t i o n . Consequently I have instructed my Department i n consideration with experts i n the f i e l d of primary education to make a study of c e r t a i n aspects of pre-primary education somewhat along the following l i n e s : a) To discover what evidence there i s , i f any, that c h i l d r e n who go to kindergarten make better progress i n school than c h i l d r e n who do not have t h i s p r i v i l e g e . b) To investigate the p o s s i b i l i t y of having c h i l d r e n enter Grade 1 at an e a r l i e r age, say age f i v e , based on a f i t n e s s or readiness test, thereby obviating the neces-94 s i t y for having kindergartens, p a r t i c u l a r l y i n the larger centres. c) To investigate comparative costs as between operating kindergartens or providing s t a f f and f a c i l i t i e s for t e s t -ing and screening c h i l d r e n who might enter Grade 1 at age f i v e . d) To examine thoroughly the present curriculum and methods of public kindergarten i n s t r u c t i o n i n those school d i s t r i c t s that have them. In some quarters the opinion is held that c h i l d r e n i n kindergarten should be taught some of the s k i l l s of reading and number work, even at th i s l e v e l , and many of the private kindergartens follow t h i s practice. In contrast we have the p r e v a i l i n g idea that kindergarten is merely a s o c i a l i z i n g process and that no formal teaching of any consequence should take p l a c e . ^ This statement would appear to be f a i r l y representative of the "support i n p r i n c i p l e " l i n e of thought. Peterson did not commit himself f u l l y i n any d i r e c t i o n but was obviously w i l l i n g to be swayed by factors such as cost and academic achievement, factors which themselves were l i k e l y to r a i s e p o l i t i c a l support from members of the public who were not-already committed to the need for and establishment of kindergartens. This a t t i -tude is expressed at greater length i n a l e t t e r to E r i c Martin,. M i n i s t e r of Health and Welfare, i n which Peterson stated that as no studies had been made of the success of kindergartens i n achieving t h e i r goals he was faced with a c l e a r l y defined problem. I f the proponents of kindergartens are correct i n t h e i r assumptions, then i t is obviously u n f a i r and educationally wrong to l i m i t t h e i r benefits to a few favoured areas. I f , on the other hand, kindergartens have not proven t h e i r value and j u s t i f i e d . t h e i r not inconsiderable expenditure of public funds, i t is equally wrong to permit t h e i r expansion. Opinions on both sides have been f r e e l y stated, but the opinions have been based on f e e l i n g rather than on research.44 He went on to say that a committee was already i n v e s t i g a t i n g the matter and u n t i l i t s invesitgations were complete no further a c t i o n i n either 95 d i r e c t i o n would be taken. In the l i g h t of research that had been c a r r i e d on, i n the United-States at least, for the past decade Peterson's comments as to the known value of kindergarten were not f u l l y correct. However, they did lead to l o c a l research that had not previously been undertaken. The Committee was composed of f i v e senior members of.the Department of Education, E.E. Hyndman, Chief Inspector of Schools, Dr., C.B. Conway, Director of Tests, Standards and Research, J.R. Meredith, Director of Curriculum, B.A. Barr, Research Assistant and F . P . L e v i r s , Assistant Superintendent of Education (Inst r u c t i o n a l Services) and Chairman of the Committee. The Committee t r i e d i t s utmost, and succeeded f a i r l y well, i n remain-ing impartial within the parameters of i t s terms of reference. I t concen-trated, as directed, on examining research and opinion on the value of kindergartens as well as e x i s t i n g kindergartens and l e g i s l a t i o n . The search was directed as much as possible i n Canada, which was a departure from the norm, but some reference was made to Americanrresearch. The balance of evidence in the external studies was i n favour of the value of kindergartens i n promoting academic readiness and s o c i a l development of chi l d r e n . Children who have attended kindergarten show s u p e r i o r i t y i n those respects to childrenwho have not. This super-i o r i t y is most marked i n Grade 1 and tends to become less marked in the upper grades, disappearing e n t i r e l y by the end of the primary d i v i s i o n . A l s o , most P r i n c i p a l s and teachers are apparently convinced of the value of kindergartens. This opinion i s shared by the Ontario Royal Commission on Education of 1950 and the Alberta Royal Commission of 1959.^5 The Committee further acknowledged the b e l i e f of administrators and supervisors, as well as some parents, i n the benefits of kindergarten 96 experience. It commented that "Although professional opinion may not be based on objective evidence, i t is usually based, on trained observation 46 and for that reason is worthy of a t t e n t i o n . " In addition,, the Committee conducted i t s own research i n Vancouver and V i c t o r i a kindergartens, through the Department of Education's D i v i s i o n of Tests, Standards and Research. In line'with the terms of reference, the research concerned i t s e l f with report card ratings in Grades 1-3, adaptation to the school s i t u a t i o n , i n t e l l i g e n c e , achievement, retardation and acceleration, Again, although evidence.was not conclusive, i t indicated that kindergarten attendance did benefit c h i l d r e n i n l a t e r school achievement. In so far as lowering the school entrance age to f i v e years was con-cerned, the Committee concluded that: Neither evidence nor a u t h o r i t a t i v e opinion would favour t h i s on a universal basis unless there were pr o v i s i o n for a readiness programme of approximately one year for the normal c h i l d . Evidence and opinion would favour admis-sion to Grade 1 only of those c h i l d r e n with a mental age of at least 6.0 since few below that mental age would have any chance of success.47 Such a move would have required the extensive t e s t i n g of young c h i l d r e n and the Committee concluded that, although this would be considerably less expensive than the cost of operating kindergarten classes for a l l children, the t e s t i n g would be " u n r e l i a b l e and.lacking in v a l i d i t y " as'well as generating "unfavourable reactions among parents of c h i l d r e n rejected 48 because of too low a mental age." In examining what was currently taking place within the kindergarten classes in Vancouver and V i c t o r i a , Committee members v i s i t e d classes and requested a number of kindergarten teachers to submit short statements on 49 t h e i r own philosophies of kindergarten. The Committee found that the 97 general aims of the o f f i c i a l kindergarten programme in. British.Columbia was in l i n e with those in the United Kingdom, the United States and Canada, "that c h i l d r e n should receive some preparation or readiness t r a i n i n g before entering upon t h e i r formal e d u c a t i o n . T h i s statement, however, is a very basic summary, not only of the statements made by the kindergarten teachers, but also of the philosophies expressed by pre-school a u t h o r i t i e s throughout the rest of Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom. This lack of elaboration may have stemmed from the fact that the report i t s e l f was not intended to be extensive; indeed, time and resources were quite l i m i t e d . " ^ Nevertheless, the brevity of the summary r e f l e c t s the a t t i t u d e of the Committee to a large extent. They were seeking j u s t i f i c a -t i o n for the expense of including kindergarten i n the school system and t h e i r terms of reference directed that such j u s t i f i c a t i o n should take the form of measurable academic s u p e r i o r i t y i n c h i l d r e n with kindergarten experience. They therefore had no need to take into consideration any benefits that f e l l outside these rather narrow parameters. An important point that was made by the Committee, however, concerned the i s o l a t i o n of the e x i s t i n g kindergartens from the rest of the school structure. This was a problem that had; worried some educators since the f i r s t i n c l u s i o n of kindergartens in public school systems i n the l a s t decades of the nineteenth century. Some kindergartners, then, had tended "to look on t h e i r work as a closed system, complete i n i t s e l f , having l i t t l e r e l a t i o n to the next stage i n the l i f e of the c h i l d . " In such cases, kindergarten tended to be seen as an imposing facade tacked on to the front of the school system rather than an i n t e g r a l part of the l i f e of the c h i l d . Kindergartners, too, were sometimes resented by t h e i r primary colleagues 98 because of t h e i r shorter hours of work, t h e i r more be a u t i f u l classrooms, t h e i r more l i b e r a l supplies of equipment and t h e i r smaller numbers of 52 p u p i l s . In B r i t i s h Columbia i n the l a t e 1950's, the resentment, between kindergarten and primary teachers did not seem to e x i s t but the difference i n educational philosophies s t i l l tended to set the kindergarten alone rather than encourage i t s acceptance into the system. The Chief Inspector of S c h o o l s . v i s i t e d V i c t o r i a and Vancouver kinder-gartens as part of the Committee's investigation, and concluded that i n both c i t i e s kindergartens were operating e f f i c i e n t l y and in l i n e with the aims set out i n the Manual. In most cases too, he considered the teachers superior. He noted that no two classes were run" i d e n t i c a l l y : On the one hand there, were teachers who pressed for reading and number readiness and who sought to provide an atmosphere s i m i l a r to the.usual one p r e v a i l i n g i n primary classrooms. At the other extreme, some of the teachers emphasized more-of a play school atmosphere where there was more emphasis on freedom of choice by the pupils and less r e s t r i c t i o n of movement.53 In V i c t o r i a , i t would seem that the former mode-was the most common, for the Inspector reported, "The emphasis i n the i n s t r u c t i o n a l programme i s upon preparedness for entry into school rather than on the play school and . . . „54 free a c t i v i t i e s . The Report of the Pre-Primary Committee was the f i r s t o f f i c i a l examina-t i o n , i n B r i t i s h Columbia, of the question of the i n c l u s i o n of kindergarten into the school system. .Previously i t had been only School Boards, : • .. teachers and parents' associations that had shown much in t e r e s t in. either debating the subject, or working towards the establishment of classes. The Report i t s e l f shows c l e a r l y the differing-views on kindergarten e x i s t i n g throughout the educational hierarchy. 99 The teachers and parent groups with whom the Committee met i n the course of i t s i n v e s t i g a t i o n were by far the most enthusiastic about the need for and benefits of kindergarten classes, and, without exception, were i n favour of extending the classes. This grass roots enthusiasm had been c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of the movement i n B r i t i s h Columbia since the war years, but for the f i r s t time, the Report gave o f f i c i a l and " s c i e n t i f i c " support to the demands. The Chant Commission was obviously more impressed by the research re s u l t s than the force of public opinion, i f the contents of i t s own chapter on kindergartens i s any guide. But while i t s own recommendations opened the way for interested School Boards to act, mandatory kindergarten classes were s t i l l far from being a r e a l i t y . The p r o v i n c i a l government moved r a p i d l y to change the kindergarten l e g i s l a t i o n , i n l i n e with the Chant recommendations, but i n r e a l i t y this did l i t t l e more than place School Boards i n the same p o s i t i o n as they had been i n before the r e s t i c -tions on kindergarten expansion i n 1958-59. Boards, such as Vancouver, that were already interested i n kindergartens, were able to carry out t h e i r plans for expansion, but throughout, the province generally, the e s t a b l i s h -ment of kindergarten classes continued to be slow and piecemeal. Throughout the early 1960's, following the p u b l i c a t i o n of the Chant Report, debate on the subject of kindergartens lessened somewhat. Vancouver School Board expanded i t s kindergartens to the point where each.of i t s elementary schools had at least one c l a s s . Other interested Boards opened classes as they saw f i t , but a l l this expansion took place-within the e x i s t i n g l e g i s l a t i o n and no moves were made to extend the l e g i s l a t i o n further. In the second h a l f of the decade, however, a new emphasis came to be placed on early childhood education. This was l a r g e l y the r e s u l t of 100 a quickening of in t e r e s t i n the f i e l d outside of Canada. Operation Head-star t , i n the United States, was perhaps the most i n f l u e n t i a l r e s u l t of t h i s new in t e r e s t , and the research generated by many of i t s programmes not only strengthened the commitment of those working in the f i e l d , but also, led to more and more experimental programmes and investigations i n the areas of kindergarten and c h i l d care. B r i t i s h Columbia, too, f e l t the e f f e c t s , as interested sections of the community again began to c a l l for more services and to investigate those already i n existence. P r o v i s i o n of day care for working and si n g l e parents again became an issue, with welfare agencies and private individuals 55 c a l l i n g on the public to j o l t an "apathetic government" into action. C a l l s for action i n this area, however, were now directed to the Department of Health and Welfare rather than to the Department of Education. As the early r e s u l t s of Operation Headstart i n the United States began to show the benefits of pre-school experience for underprivileged children, s i m i l a r programmes were considered for B r i t i s h Columbia. But despite the - educational emphasis of these programmes, B r i t i s h Columbia School Boards were un w i l l i n g to become involved. In 1966, the Vancouver School Board received two requests to a s s i s t i n Headstart programmes from the F i r s t United Church's Dunlevy Nursery School and from the National Council of Women. The f i r s t , which was a s t r a i g h t request for funds, was re f e r r e d to the p r o v i n c i a l Department of S o c i a l Welfare, while the second, a request for equipment, was tabled u n t i l such time as equipment might be 56 a v a i l a b l e . In 1968, the BCTF set up a Commission on Education, and i t s report, Involvement: The Key to Better Schools, emphasized the importance of the 101 early years i n education. The Commission received b r i e f s from schools and teachers throughout the province as well as studying research and trends in t h e r e s t of Canada and the world. The report i t s e l f was short, r e l y i n g heavily on a m u l t i p l i c i t y of i l l u s t r a t i o n s , accompanied by s h o r t l y stated conclusions which were sometimes elaborated by quotations from b r i e f s or research. But i t s message was clear; the education system needed changes. Amongst the more general conclusions were: That education should be humanized and personalized. That many pupils are 'lost educationally' in the f i r s t years of school, through excessive use,of mass and. group techniques. That programs should be s p e c i f i c a l l y designed for i n d i v i d u a l children, recognising the unique way i n which each-learns. That remedial services i n l a t e r years do l i t t l e to compensate or to overcome the damage done by neglect in the early years. That every c h i l d from hi s e a r l i e s t years should be a s s i s t e d i n developing techniques for learning-on h i s own and given opportunities to evaluate his own progress. More s p e c i f i c recommendations for the early years were that Top p r i o r i t y should be given to the elementary.schools in terms of educational planning and f i n a n c i a l a s s i s -tance. Pre-school education should be provided for three and four year old children. Kindergarten should be an i n t e g r a l part of the public school system. Ea r l y childhood education should be under the j u r i s d i c -t i o n of the Department of Educationrrather than welfare agencies or private individuals.58 This l a s t recommendation was strongly influenced by the report of the B r i t i s h Columbia School Trustees Association of the previous year. The report was t i t l e d Educational Innovation, and one of i t s chapters was devoted to the importance of kindergarten and the " c r i t i c a l years" hypo-thesis; the a s s e r t i o n that "the kinds of experience that a c h i l d has i n the early years are the major determinants of his subsequent school 102 career." This theory was by no means new to those in the kindergarten f i e l d ; i t was, a f t e r a l l , the basis of Froebel's philosophy. But educators at a l l l e v e l s had been f o r c i b l y reminded of i t by the research of Bloom and Worth in 1964-65 and the very i n f l u e n t i a l Plowden Report on B r i t i s h . 60 Education i n 1967. The BCSTA agreed with the research findings which held that, "the base on'which much school learning flourishes is l a i d before the age of s i x , " and therefore proposed the extension of education downward-to younger age groups. The term Early Childhood Education was used in reference to this downward extension and this was rather confusing as i t tended to imply the i n c l u s i o n of c h i l d r e n as young as three or four, as was the case in the BCTF Report. Despite the use of the term, however, the BCSTA Report made i t clear that i t was r e f e r r i n g only to kindergarten, as already defined in the Schools Act. This, i t considered,. "should become an e s s e n t i a l and i n t e g r a l part of our.educational program in B r i t i s h 61 Columbia." Amongst teachers, too, new in t e r e s t was s t i r r i n g and ideas were developing. Within the BCTF, kindergarten teachers had no separate associa-tion, but were included in the B r i t i s h Columbia Primary Teachers Association which published, from 1964 onwards, a monthly Newsletter and a t r i - y e a r l y journal,, Prime Areas. I n i t i a l l y the contents of these two publications were of in t e r e s t more to primary teachers, but in 1968 an e f f o r t was made to contact and improve communications with a l l kindergarten teachers i n the province. By this time some d i s t r i c t s had also organized kindergarten sub-associations, and the BCPTA was eager to encourage t h i s move further. In l i n e with t h i s , i t proposed including kindergarten ideas in Prime Areas, 62 and requested a r t i c l e s for publication. From the winter of 1969 on-103 wards,. Prime Areas included a short section e n t i t l e d "Kindergarten Korner" which included short a r t i c l e s on the philosophy and method of kindergarten. Most of the section, however, was taken up with suggestions for a c t i v i t i e s and c r a f t ideas. It seemed to be in this area that teachers needed most help. There was also some uncertainty on" "what to teach" i n the kindergarten since there was no set curriculum. A three part a r t i c l e , . "A New Organiza-ti o n of Kindergarten Objectives to Serve Developmental Needs" by H. Woolley, B.J. Cox and C.J. Stewart, School Board Consultants, took up much of the Kindergarten Korner :space i n 1971-72 issues. The desire for structure and order within kindergarten rooms showed i t s e l f c o n tinually i n t h i s section of the journal despite a r t i c l e s dealing with work through play, the value of the process rather than the product, and the value of s o c i a l 63 development rather than academic excellence at this age. Whether or not t h i s stemmed from the fact that a large number of teachers had previously worked with primary grades and could not adjust f u l l y to the use of free-dom as a teaching t o o l , or whether i t was that Prime Areas was a primary journal edited by primary teachers which prevented the i n c l u s i o n of;':freer 64 " ideas, is hard to say. What is important is that i t was produced by teachers for teachers, and probably r e f l e c t e d f a i r l y accurately what was taking place i n a number of classrooms. I f this was the case, then i t can be assumed that a number of teachers had programmes that were quite structured and.organized. The. movement towards a continuity between kindergarten and Grade 1 was not new. In theory, i t had been i n existence since the early days of public school kindergartens. The in t e r e s t i n early i n t e l l e c t u a l develop-104 ment that grew r a p i d l y i n the second h a l f of the s i x t i e s , however, gave new l i f e to the theory and, in some cases, extended to the prac t i c e as wel l . The Faculty of Education at UBC was very much concerned with t h i s continuity. The January 1966 issue of i t s Journal of Education was devoted e n t i r e l y to Early Childhood E d u c a t i o n . ^ Nineteen a r t i c l e s , most of them written by fa c u l t y members, dealt with a l l aspects of early education. The E d i t o r i a l noted: Aware that we have f a i l e d to recognise the\ f u l l s i g n i f i -cance of pre-school and primary education, we are now more than ever concerned about the kinds of experience a c h i l d has i n his early years... pressures from the adult world i n the community and i n administration i n the form of u n r e a l i s t i c goals, r i g i d grade standards, damaging grouping practices, poor techniques of reporting to parents and p o l i c i e s that destroy worthy s e l f concepts, r e s t r i c t the learning a c t i v i t i e s of ch i l d r e n and do much to f r u s t r a t e the glowing promise of each child.66 The various a r t i c l e s covered many of the aspects of education i n the early years both i n the kindergarten and i n the primary grades but no e f f o r t was made to d i f f e r e n t i a t e between the two groups. Early childhood' educa-t i o n was viewed as an on-going process that must be made to straddle the a r t i f i c i a l b a r r i e r s that had previously been used to divide the learning experiences of ch i l d r e n i n the age range three to eight. This, too, was a p a r t i c u l a r concern of the BCTF and was i l l u s t r a t e d by several a r t i c l e s i n the Federation's journal, the B.C. Teacher, i n the late s i x t i e s . The BCTF believed that "The public school system should be viewed as a si n g l e u n i t . This unit should include what i s now described as the elementary and the secondary school years as well as the pre-school 67 or kindergarten period where provided i n the public school." Alongside t h i s b e l i e f there,was growing i n t e r e s t i n separating the early years of 105 education, kindergarten to Grade 3, from the r e s t - o f the elementary grades, and extending the kindergarten mode of learning throughout this period. The B r i t i s h infant school again became the model to be studied, along with techniques such as " i n d i v i d u a l i z a t i o n of i n s t r u c t i o n , the open area school, non-graded and multi-graded classrooms, continuous promotion, the use of teacher aides, the elimination of report cards in favour of parent-68 teacher conferences, and the discovery and enquiry approach to learning," The Newsletter of the B r i t i s h Columbia Primary Teachers Association reported, in 1968, that the Department of Education was forming a new committee to revise the e x i s t i n g kindergarten curriculum guide, the Kinder-69 garten Manual. The committee members were a l l a c t i v e in the kindergarten f i e l d , e i t h e r as teachers, supervisors or teacher educators, and the editor was Ulah Watson, Supervisor of Primary Education for the Greater V i c t o r i a School Board. As i t was expected that the committee would be some time at this task,, the BCPTA undertook to c o l l e c t and compile resource material for kindergarten teachers. This action further suggests that teachers were uncertain about t h e i r r o l e and f e l t the-need of a more d e f i n i t i v e programme guide. Resource Materials for Kindergartens appeared in 1972 and was greeted with great enthusiasm, at least by some teachers. It is unfortunately no longer a v a i l a b l e but would have made an i n t e r e s t i n g comparison with the'Department of Education's Resource Book for KinderT gartens which was published a year l a t e r . 7 ^ The Resource Book, which is s t i l l the o f f i c i a l Department of Education curriculum guide for kindergartens, was very d i f f e r e n t i n s t y l e and format to i t s predecessor, the Kindergarten Manual. There was, too, a noticeable difference i n the emphasis placed on academic s k i l l s . The main emphasis 106 of the book was on the integrated curriculum and the design and implemen-t a t i o n of the kindergarten programme; subjects that were at the forefront of discussion and research in both the United States and the United Kingdom at the time. Blocks of time, a c t i v i t y centres, work period, subject areas, and f i e l d t r i p s were a l l examined as separate yet inesca-pably related facets of the programme. Pictures, diagrams, quotations, descriptions of equipment, and suggestions for teaching plans were used, too, in an e f f o r t to c l a r i f y what should be going on i n the kindergarten room. The e f f e c t was confusing rather than enlightening, for while there was constant r e i t e r a t i o n of the need for freedom for the c h i l d to explore and discover, there-was also more i m p l i c i t emphasis.on formal learning. This was most marked in r e l a t i o n to reading and w r i t i n g . No longer was teaching i n t h i s area dismissed as having no place i n the kindergarten. It was s t i l l not recommended as a class a c t i v i t y but several pages were devoted to the ways in which i t could be encouraged informally. 7''' This 72 was p a r t i c u l a r l y noticeable when compared ,to the section on mathematics. Here the emphasis was on o r a l counting and the learning of basic arithme-t i c a l concepts such as quantity, s i z e , s i m i l a r i t y and d i f f e r e n c e and of acquiring a vocabulary to express mathematical r e l a t i o n s h i p s . But no suggestion that c h i l d r e n begin doing simple cal c u l a t i o n s was even hinted at. However, i t would appear that reading and w r i t i n g held such symbolic importance, that c h i l d r e n could not be allowed to remain at the prepara-tory stage i n kindergarten. Instead they must always be encouraged to extend themselves as far as possible i n this one area. This encouragement was never so marked i n other areas perhaps because there was no set product that the c h i l d could display as i n reading and w r i t i n g . 107 It was in t h i s respect,, then,, that the Resource Book d i f f e r e d most from the Manual. The s t y l e of presentation of each can be a t t r i b u t e d mainly to changing fashion. In content some s i m i l a r i t i e s s t i l l remained; the Resource Book, too, contained a large section on equipment, materials, supplies and sources, professional and children's books and ideas for a c t i v i t i e s . But the one d i f f e r e n c e i s very important for i t shows c l e a r l y that as kindergartens became more and more an accepted part of the school system the gap between them and Grade 1 was gradually worn away and not only did Grade 1 become more kindergarten-like but kindergarten began to adopt some. of. the a t t r i b u t e s of Grade .1, namely the desire for a tangible product. So far, t h i s chapter has examined the development of kindergarten theory and pr a c t i c e in B r i t i s h Columbia as i l l u s t r a t e d by professional publications and o f f i c i a l and s e m i - o f f i c i a l examinations of the system. From these sources, as well as from the.few remaining reports of kinder-garten teachers themselves, i t has been possible to piece together some idea of what was taking place within kindergarten classrooms i n the period from the opening of the f i r s t public school kindergarten i n 1944, to the end.of the 1960's. A further source, and one that i s quite as important as those already examined, is that of kindergarten teacher t r a i n i n g during the same period. In B r i t i s h Columbia, no s p e c i a l q u a l i f i c a t i o n for teaching kindergar-ten has ever been required beyond normal teaching c e r t i f i c a t i o n , although preference has always been given to teachers with t r a i n i n g or experience in t his area. When classes were f i r s t opened i n V i c t o r i a and Vancouver, the teachers were presumably ei t h e r primary s p e c i a l i s t s or had received 108 t h e i r kindergarten training, outside of the province. Leadership i n the kindergarten f i e l d in both d i s t r i c t s c e r t a i n l y came from primary s p e c i a l -i s t s for some years. In 1945, classes i n kindergarten theory and method were offered at Department of Education Summer Schools and within two years the Un i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia Department of Extension (now Continuing Education) was also o f f e r i n g s i m i l a r courses. Despite the a v a i l a b i l i t y of l o c a l t r a i n i n g , for some years a large number of teachers appear to have trained outside of the province. In 1958-59, the Pre-Primary Education Committee, pre-paring i t s report to the Chant Commission, v i s i t e d eight classes i n Vancouver. Of these eight teachers, three had'studied kindergarten method in Ontario, two had trained overseas, and one had an Elementary Conditional C e r t i f i c a t e but had taught " f o r many years" i n both private and public kindergartens. The other two are simply l i s t e d as "experienced kindergarten 73 teachers." The University of B r i t i s h Columbia was the f i r s t i n the province to undertake kindergarten teacher t r a i n i n g as a part of i t s regular programme and for most'-ofr-the period under examination i t was the only school that did. Simon Eraser University did not begin to o f f e r such courses u n t i l 1970 and the U n i v e r s i t y of V i c t o r i a s t i l l does not do so. From 1947 onwards the Extension Department of UBC enlarged i t s pro-gramme to include ten non-credit courses which were required for the 74 l i c e n s i n g of teachers in private kindergartens and pre-school groups. When the College of Education was established i n 1956, attempts were made to provide more for the needs of teachers in public school kindergartens. A major i n Preschool Education was included in the elementary programme 109 and preparation was begun of further courses for kindergarten teachers. Special nursery-kindergarten schools were set up o f f campus for use in summer courses, and in the winter session, Mrs. Alice-Borden's private kindergarten at Fourth and Blanca was used for observation. The courses for c r e d i t begun wit h i n the College of Education p a r a l l e l l e d the non-credit courses of the Extension Department and for some years both continued to be given. In 1961, a C h i l d Study Centre was established on campus by the College of Education. I t provided opportunities for observation and demonstration, research, and pre-service and in-service t r a i n i n g for teachers i n both private and public kindergartens. A l i c e Borden was i t s f i r s t Director and Dean N.V. Scarfe, who showed great in t e r e s t in this area of education, was 7 ft on the Management Committee. By 1965, the Vancouver D i s t r i c t College, run by the Vancouver School Board, was o f f e r i n g shorter and cheaper courses than UBC for teachers " seeking q u a l i f i c a t i o n s for teaching i n private kindergartens under the Welfare I n s t i t u t i o n s D i v i s i o n of the p r o v i n c i a l Department of Welfare. The focus at UBC was therefore directed towards the Preschool Major degree or c e r t i f i c a t e . ^ ^ In the following year, administrative r e s p o n s i b i l i t y for the C h i l d Study Centre was assumed by Mrs. Grace Bredin, who c o r ordinated the Centre's a c t i v i t i e s with the courses offered by the Faculty of Education and the other Faculties and Departments that had an i n t e r e s t 7 8 i n young chil d r e n . These included S o c i a l Work, Medicine, Home Economics, Psychology and Extension. Faculty members in the Early Childhood Department were r e c r u i t e d l a r g e l y by Grace Bredin, who, l i k e Dean Scarfe, had come to UBC from the 110 Uni v e r s i t y of Manitoba, when the College of Education was established. Although she had not trained i n pre-school education, Grace Bredin had much experience i n education and was convinced of the v i t a l importance of 79 the early years in influencing a c h i l d s future development. Dean Scarfe, who had been strongly influenced in England, by Susan Issacs and Dorothy Gardner, was also of this mind. As a r e s u l t , new f a c u l t y members who'were re c r u i t e d had backgrounds i n nursery education rather than i n the more formal primary grades. The majority had trained in the United S t a t e s . 8 0 Increasing concern amongst fa c u l t y members for the expansion of kinder-gartens i n the public schools, led, i n 1968, to the appointment, of a j o i n t committee from the Education and Extension Departments.. The committee organized a symposium for administrators and School Trustees on "The Establishment of Kindergartens i n Public Schools"; work was also begun on new courses for the preparation of teachers to f i l l the increasing number 81 of places i n public school kindergartens. By 1969, four courses were being offered i n Early Childhood Education: 1. Bachelor of Education Degree. 2. Master of Education Degree. 3. Education Extension programme•for selected mature students for basic and continuing study i n early childhood education. 4. Diploma i n Education (Education of Young Children). This was a one year course for college graduates which integrated the contents of several 82 of the courses in the regular Bachelor Degree programme. Leadership for the profession and the community was provided through consultation services to School Boards and pre-school groups i n the form I l l of k i t s of resource l i t e r a t u r e on the organization and administration of kindergartens. A l l s t a f f members acted as resource persons, c h a i r i n g and 83 leading workshops throughout the province and giving off-campus courses. Increasing enrolment i n a l l undergraduate courses i n e a r l y childhood education.made i t necessary to provide both day and evening courses in the regular programme i n 1971, as well as an extra-sessional, schedule. In the Bachelor programme, by far the most heavily enrolled, approximately, f i v e 84 hundred students took one or more courses. This included students of varying backgrounds and career orientations. Majors were required to take the four early childhood education courses as w e l l as a kindergarten practicum. It i s c l e a r that from the establishment of the College of Education i n 1956, the C h i l d Study Centre and the f a c u l t y members of the Department of Early Childhood Education played an increasingly, large r o l e i n the preparation of teachers for the likewise r a p i d l y increasing number of public kindergartens. The r o l e was a double one, for fac u l t y members worked both within the Un i v e r s i t y and i n the community with School Boards, Trustees, teachers and parent groups for the further expansion and under-standing of kindergarten education. One of the strongest u n i t i n g factors w i t h i n the early childhood education f i e l d with B r i t i s h Columbia was the Association for Childhood Education International. By. 1960, a p r o v i n c i a l Board of this a s s o c i a t i o n had been established with representatives from the already established V i c t o r i a , Vancouver Teachers, B r i t i s h Columbia Preschool Education Associa-85 tion, Co-operative Teachers, and Greater V i c t o r i a Teachers branches. In the following few years, the B r i t i s h Columbia Preschool Education 112 Association and the Greater Vancouver Kindergarten Teachers Association gradually disintegrated and so the p r o v i n c i a l Board of the ACE became more 86 and more important as a l i n k between the various groups i n the f i e l d . A student branch was also organized at UBC, with fac u l t y support. The Board organized Conferences in A p r i l 1961, March 1963 and October 1964. At the 1964 Conference, Dr. Helen Heffernan'of the C a l i f o r n i a Bureau of Elementary Education, and Audrianna A l l e n . o f S e a t t l e were guest 87 speakers. Further contact with the in t e r n a t i o n a l mainstream of early childhood education came with the attendance of l o c a l delegates at ACEI conferences i n the United States, and with the appointment of Mozetta Downey to the Kindergarten Committee and Margery Thompson to the Nursery Committee of the ACEI. In the summer of 1966, the ACEI sponsored a ten-day workshop at UBC. Many l o c a l educators chaired sessions as did i n t e r -national v i s i t o r s including Dr. Bernice Baxter from M i l l s College C a l i f o r n i a , Dr. Helen Heffernan, and Dr. Vernon Haulnich of Teachers College, Columbia 88 University. Dorothy Gardner, of the U n i v e r s i t y of London, also made a valuable contribution to early childhood education i n the province, both 89 through papers delivered at conferences and as a v i s i t i n g professor. The p r o v i n c i a l ACE Board began publishing i t s own newspaper i n 1970, under the editorship of Dr. David Bain, Associate Professor of Education at UBC. The newly formed B r i t i s h Columbia Preschool Teachers A s s o c i a t i o n 90 also began publishing a newsletter at t h i s time. Both served to draw together early childhood educators throughout the province. Another int e r n a t i o n a l organization that influenced early childhood education on a worldwide basis is the Organization Mondiale pour l'educa-t i o n Prescholaire (OMEP), which has consultative status with UNICEF and 113 UNESCO. It was formed i n Prague i n 1948 and Grace Bredin was present at this inaugural assembly. For many years, Canada was not a member because i t was unable to organize a national representative body. In 1965, as a r e s u l t of the e f f o r t s of Grace Bredin and E l s i e Stapleton of the M i n i s t r y of Welfare, Ontario, a s a t i s f a c t o r y national Committee was organized and 91 Canada became a member of OMEP. The Department of Early Childhood Education at UBC,helped, to a c e r t a i n extent, to u n i f y early childhood education i n B r i t i s h Columbia. At this time, there were several areas of early childhood education i n which expansion and change were taking place; public school kindergartens, private kindergartens and nursery schools, co-op play, groups and day-care. Each group, na t u r a l l y , was most interested i n i t s own areas of concern. Faculty members from UBC had contact with a l l groups, and while they did not attempt to draw them a l l together, they did act as a form of l i a i s o n . This was true also of the p r o v i n c i a l Board of the ACE. With i t s general concern for the education and well-being of the young c h i l d , i t tended to draw together a l l groups working i n the f i e l d . Moreover, as a l o c a l branch of an inte r n a t i o n a l organization i t served to keep B r i t i s h Columbia educa-tors i n the mainstream of educational developments throughout the world. Within Canada, B r i t i s h Columbia was not the only province to begin examining i t s education system, with p a r t i c u l a r reference to the early years, i n the period from the mid-1960's to the early 1970's, but the examination was nevertheless not nationwide. At th i s time, a l l the pro-vinces, except-Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland, had some l e g i s l a t e d p r o vision for public school kindergartens. In Nova Scotia and Newfoundland, however, there was provision for admitting children, at f i v e 114 years of age, to a pre-Grade 1 programme. In New Brunswick, the e s t a b l i s h -ment and operation of kindergartens was at the d i s c r e t i o n of the School Boards, but they had to meet a l l costs themselves. Consequently, there 1 1 92 were few public kindergartens i n operation in that province. Two provinces, Alberta and Saskatchewan, set up government Commissions to report on various aspects of education and both Reports were published i n 1972. The Alberta Commission was a follow-up to a 1966 report, commissioned by the Alberta School Trustees Association, and prepared by Walter H. Worth of the Department of Elementary Education of the U n i v e r s i t y 93 of Alberta. This f i r s t report drew on a large body of research from both Canada and the United States, as well as studying selected programmes and practices i n both countries, and environmental conditions i n Alberta. Amongst i t s conclusions were: 1. Readiness for schooling can be developed at an e a r l i e r age than pre-v i o u s l y supposed. 2. A l l c h i l d r e n can p r o f i t from early schooling. 3. Early childhood education i s intended as a complement, not anualterna-t i v e to family l i f e . 4. E a r l y childhood education should be an i n t e g r a l part of schooling. 5. Early childhood education has c e r t a i n unique objectives and character-i s t i c s . I t further concluded that opportunities for young c h i l d r e n i n Alberta were v a s t l y i n f e r i o r to many elsewhere. As there was widespread public support for the idea, the report recommended that the services should be extended downwards to include five-year-olds on a voluntary basis, with the same 94 government f i n a n c i a l support as elementary education. 115 The Report of the Royal Commission, e n t i t l e d A Future of Choices: A Choice of Futures, was also prepared under the chairmanship of Walter Worth and drew s i m i l a r conclusions on the question of early childhood education. I t viewed education as a l i f e l o n g process and so recommended that schooling "should begin at the e a r l i e s t age at which a c h i l d can derive b e n e f i t " and that the " p r i n c i p l e of public r e s p o n s i b i l i t y , for free 95 education...should apply to younger c h i l d r e n . " I t further recommended that the programmes currently offered by play schools, nursery schools, day-care centres, and programmes under preventative service l e g i s l a t i o n , be integrated with the programmes proposed by the Commission. This would enable early childhood education to be kept d i s t i n c t i n concept and p r a c t i c e from the basic system of schooling, • which, the Commission believed, 96 would be a stimulus to "energetic leadership and innovative a c t i v i t i e s . " The Saskatchewan inquiry took the form of a Minister's Committee and was intended only to examine the subject of kindergartens. Its terms of reference were: 1. To examine the need, f e a s i b i l i t y and d e s i r a b i l i t y of a province wide, p u b l i c a l l y supported kindergarten programme. 2. To recommend sui t a b l e objectives for such a. programme. 3. To recommend appropriate means of achieving and implementing these 97 objectives. The committee was also requested to examine finance, admission p o l i c y , problems of implementation and l e g i s l a t i v e changes that would be necessary i f kindergarten classes were established. The greater part of the report was given over to these l a t t e r problems. In-a two-page introduction, the committee accepted the premise that, "the experiences during the early 116 years of a c h i l d ' s l i f e are c r u c i a l i n determining his a t t i t u d e toward learning and his a b i l i t y to deal with subsequent experiences i n school 98 and in l i f e . " I t therefore strongly recommended that p u b l i c a l l y supported kindergartens be established i n Saskatchewan. This recommendation was sub-sequently backed up by a chapter which reviewed current l i t e r a t u r e and research on the subject, but the fact that the committee placed the recom-mendation at the head of the report indicates i t s complete acceptance of the importance of early childhood education. In 1972, the kindergarten became an i n t e g r a l part of the B r i t i s h Columbia education system. I t s t i l l bore the name that Froebel had given to his own small school nearly a century and a h a l f before, and i t s t i l l catered, i n part, to the same age group, but the s i m i l a r i t y extended no further. Many of the changes, discussed i n the e a r l i e r chapters, occurred before kindergartens were s e r i o u s l y considered for the B r i t i s h Columbia system; others took place, throughout North America as well as in t h i s province, during the t h i r t y years in which kindergartens were gradually introduced. These most recent changes, as t h i s chapter has attempted to i l l u s t r a t e , were mostly concerned with the i n t e l l e c t u a l content of the kindergarten curriculum. Some teachers and educational theorists contin-u a l l y stressed the importance of freedom for discovery and personal and s o c i a l development during the f i r s t year at school; others were increasingly concerned with an early academic o r i e n t a t i o n . The Department of Education showed l i t t l e r e a l i n t e r e s t in kindergartens between 1944 and 1970, doing l i t t l e more than to increase funding s l i g h t l y i n response to.pressure from School Boards. Even a f t e r the 1972 l e g i s l a t i o n the Department made no change in kindergarten regulations or curriculum. As a r e s u l t , kinder-117 garten classes i n B r i t i s h Columbia s t i l l vary today as much as they did i n 1958, when the Pre-Primary Committee made i t s report. The emphasis and atmosphere'within each class s t i l l depends very much on the philosophy of the teachers and p r i n c i p a l s concerned. Many classes s t i l l r e t a i n the atmosphere of freedom so strongly advocated i n the 1940's but on the whole there has probably been a s l i g h t increase i n the emphasis on preparatory work for the f i r s t grade. There can be no doubt, however, that kinder-garten is now an int e g r a l part of the education system i n B r i t i s h Columbia. If, during the period of this integration, the kindergarten l o s t some of i t s freedom and i n d i v i d u a l i t y , then the loss i s probably balanced by an increase i n the same q u a l i t i e s i n the primary grades. 118 FOOTNOTES - CHAPTER'III .^Nei'th Headley, - The Kindergarten: Its Place in the Program of  Education (New York: The Centre for Applied Research i n Education Inc., 1965), p. 23. 2 I b i d . , pp. 34-35. 3Weber, The Kindergarten, p. 206. ^Headley, The Kindergarten, p. 72; Hazel M. Lambert, Teaching the  Kindergarten C h i l d (New York: Harcourt, Brace and Co., 1958), p. v i ; Josephine C. Foster and Neith Headley, Education i n the Kindergarten (New York: Amer ican Book Company, 1948), pp. 18-22; Vivian E. Todd and Helen Heffernan, The Kindergarten Teacher (Boston: D.C. Heathe. and Co., 1960), p. 69. ^Headley, The Kindergarten, p. 23. 6 I b i d . , p. 95. 7 I b i d . , p. 73 Q Samuel J . Braun and Esther P. Edwards, History and Theory of E a r l y  Childhood Education (Worthington, Ohio: C.A. Jones Publishing Company, 1972), p. 299. 9 I b i d . , p. 176. 1 0 I b i d . , p. 245. •'"•'"Headley, The Kindergarten, p. 98. 1 2 Kenneth D. Wann, Miriam S. Dorn and El i z a b e t h Anne L i d d l e , , F o s t e r i n g  I n t e l l e c t u a l Development in Young Children (New York: Bureau of Publica-tions, Teachers College, Columbia University, 1962), p. 99. Evelyn'Weber, Early Childhood Education: Perspectives on Change (Worthington,. Ohio: C.A. Jones Publishing Company, 1970), pp. 12-14. •^Interview with Dr. • Hannah Polowy, Chairman, Department of Early Childhood Education, UBC, 18 A p r i l 1979. •'"^British Columbia. Department of Education, Kindergarten Manual: Programme of Studies for the Elementary Schools i n B r i t i s h Columbia, 1954. (hereafter c i t e d as Manual); According to the Report of the Pre-Primary  Education Committee, the Manual was f i r s t published i n 1947 (p. 47) but the Manual i t s e l f mentions no such e a r l i e r p r i n t i n g . Kathleen Wycherley c i t e s the f i r s t year of p u b l i c a t i o n as 1946 (p. 30). 119 1 fi Mention is also made of some kind of curriculum guide i n the l a t e 1940's i n Canadian Education 3 (1974):69. ^ I n t e r v i e w with Ulah Watson, former Supervisor of Primary Education, Greater V i c t o r i a School Board, 15 March 1979. 1 8Manual, p. 5. 1 9 I b i d . , . pp. 7-9. 20 See above, p. 47. 2 1Manual, p. 101. 22 H.J. Beairsto, "Acceleration i n the Elementary School," B.C. Teacher ( A p r i l 1955), pp. 316-8. 2 3 I b i d . , p. 316. 2 4 I b i d . , p. 317. 2 5 Interview with J.R. Meredith, Senior Supervisor of Public Instruc-tion, B r i t i s h Columbia Department of Education, 30'May 1979. 9 ft The B;C. Parent-Teacher was published by the B r i t i s h Columbia Parent-Teacher Association (BGPTA) and the B.C. Teacher was published by the B r i t i s h Columbia Teachers Federation (BCTF). 97 Elaine E. Waller, "Kindergartens Bloom i n V i c t o r i a , " B.C. Teacher ( A p r i l 1948) p. 255. 2 8 M a r i a n James, " W i l l He Be Ready for School?" B.C. Teacher ( A p r i l 1954) pp. 311-16. 2 9 K a t h l e e n C o l l i n s , . "Five and a Half or Six?" B.C. Parent-Teacher (March-April 1955) p. 5. 3 0Idem, "Is Your Ch i l d Ready for School?" B.C. Parent-Teacher (June-Ju l y 1959) pp. 10-11. 3 1Mary Thomson, "The P l i g h t of the Pre-schooler," B.C.. Parent-Teacher (April-May 1959) pp. 10-11. 39 A.K. Davies to Chant Commission, B r i e f #213; F.R. Bates to Chant Commission, B r i e f #2. JIntermunicipal Committee of Greater V i c t o r i a to Chant Commission, B r i e f #181. 3 4BCTF to Chant Commission, B r i e f #327. 120 35 Interview with W.V. A l l i s t e r , Director of Teacher Personnel, BCTF, 31 May 1979. 36 People i n the Sechelt D i s t r i c t to Chant Commission, B r i e f #154. 37 Board of School Trustees, Vancouver, to Chant Commission, B r i e f #231. 3 8 Vancouver Parent-Teacher Council to Chant Commission, B r i e f #196. -39 Board of School Trustees, North Vancouver, to Chant Commission, B r i e f #163. ^ B r i t i s h Columbia Preschool Education Ass o c i a t i o n to Chant Commission, B r i e f #221. 4^"Co-operative Play Groups Association to Chant Commission, B r i e f #160. Nursery School Association of Greater V i c t o r i a to Chant Commission, B r i e f #168. Hon.L.R. Peterson to G.G. Robinson, Chairman, Vancouver School Board, 11.July 1958. reprinted i n Pre-Primary Report, p. 1. 4 4Hon. L.R. Peterson to Hon. E. Martin, Minister of Health and Welfare, B r i t i s h Columbia, n.d. included i n correspondence March-December 1958. Martin C o l l e c t i o n , Add Mss 882, Box 16, F i l e 1, - P r o v i n c i a l Archives of B r i t i s h Columbia. 4^Pre-Primary Report, pp. 38-39. 4 6 l b i d . , p. 12. 4 7 i I b i d . , p. 39. 4 8 I b i d . , p. 40. 49 ^Addenda to the Report, nos. 8-9. ~*®P re-Primary Report, p. 36. 5 1 I b i d . , pp. 2-3. 52 John H. Putman, F i f t y Years at School: An Educationist Looks at  L i f e (Toronto: Clarke, Irwin and Co., 1938), pp. 62-3. 5 3 Addenda to the Report, no;;}. 8, p. 4. 5 4 I b i d . , no. 9, p. 7. 121 -^Vancouver Times, 5 August 1965, p.. 11. 5 6Sun, 6 December 1966, p. 12. 5 7BCTF, Involvement: The Key to Better Schools (Vancouver: BCTF, 1968) . 5 8 I b i d . , pp. 8, 13-14. 59 B r i t i s h Columbia School Trustees Association, Educational Innovation, (Vancouver: BCSTA, 1967), p. 22. fid ° Central Advisory Council for Education (England), Children and  t h e i r Primary Schools, v o l . 2, 1967. 6 1BCSTA, Innovation, p. 23. B r i t i s h Columbia Primary Teachers Association, - Newsletter (October 1968), p. 4. (hereafter c i t e d as Newsletter). 6 3Prime Areas 12 ( F a l l 1969):21; Ibid., 13,(Spring 1971):28-9; 12 (Spring 1970):50. 6 4 I b i d . , 11 (Winter 1969):31-2. 6 5 T h e Journal of Education of the Faculty of Education, UBC*, 12 (January 1966) passim. 6 6 I b i d . , p. 1. 67 W.V. A l l i s t e r , "Curriculum Should be our Business," BrC? Teacher (November 1965), p. 65-66. 6 8 P . Lamont, "Pre-School?" B.C. Teacher (February 1968), p. 177; H. MacKenzie, "Let's Close the Gap," B.C. Teacher (May-June 1968), p. 358. 6 9Newsletter, (May 1968), n.p. 7 QBCTF, Resource Materials for Kindergartens.(Vancouver; BCTF, 1972) out of p r i n t ; Newsletter (January 1972), p. 11; B r i t i s h Columbia. Depart-ment of Education, Resource Book for Kindergartens, 1973. 7 1 I b i d . , pp. 39-42. 7 2 I b i d . , pp. 52-53. 7 3 '-'Addenda to the Report, no. 8, pp. 1-2. 7 4 U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia, Annual Report of the Dean of Education  1961 (VancouverUBC, 1961) ,' p. 6.- (hereafter' c i t e d as Dean's Annual Report.) 7 5 I b i d . 122 7 6 I b i d . , 1962, p. 70. 7 7 I b i d . , 1965, pp. 91-2. 7 8 I b i d . , 1966, p.. 122. 79 Interview with Grace Bredin, former Chairman, Department of Early Childhood Education, UBC, 11 June 1979. 8 0 I n t e r v i e w with N.V. Scarfe, former Dean of Education, UBC, 15 June 197 9. 81 Dean's/ Annual Report 1968,. p. 83. 8 2 I b i d . , 1969, p. 60. 8 3 l b i d . , p. 61. 8 4 I b i d . , 1971, p. 67. 8 % y c h e r l e y , - B r i e f History, p. 23. 8 6 I b i d . , p. 24. 8 7 l b i d . , p. 26. 8 8 I b i d . , p. 32. 8 9 I b i d . , p. 46. 9 0 I b i d . , p. 45. 9 1Dean's Annual Report 1966, p. 123. go Canadian Education Association, Survey of Pre-school Education i n  Canada:Report no. 1, 1965-66, (Toronto: CEA, 1965), pp. 7-10. 9 3 W a l t e r H. Worth, Before Six (Edmonton: Alberta School Trustees Association, 1966). 9 4 I b i d . , pp. 65-69. 9-^Alberta. Department of Education, A Future of Choices: A Choice of  Futures, 1970, p. 50. 9 6 I b i d . , p. 135. 9 7Saskatchewan. Department of Education,- Report of the Mini s t e r of  Education's Committee on Kindergarten Education, 1972, p. v. 9 8 j b i d . , p. 1. 123 CONCLUSION Despite i t s century-long h i s t o r y i n the United States, the kindergarten i n Canadian public school systems i s a r e l a t i v e l y new phenomenon. Ontario i s , of course, the exception. That province adopted kindergartens very early i n t h e i r h istory, but this was due l a r g e l y to the e f f o r t s of James L. Hughes. Without his influence and dedicated work, Ontario would c e r t a i n l y not have-taken such a step at that time. But while kindergarten development i n Canada has been slow and piece-meal, i t has not been for lack of awareness of events i n the United States. The educational innovations in that country during the Progressive Era were followed with i n t e r e s t i n Canada and generally supported i n p r i n c i p l e . But the in t e r e s t and support did not r e s u l t i n the same extent of change as was seen i n the United States. Kindergarten was c e r t a i n l y not one of the areas of innovation that was given much support. In B r i t i s h Columbia, the care and education of c h i l d r e n under school age remained the r e s p o n s i b i l i t y of home and family u n t i l the c l o s i n g years of theSecond World War, when inte r e s t in the pre-school c h i l d was i n i t i a l l y aroused by c a l l s f o r c h i l d care f a c i l i t i e s i n Vancouver and V i c t o r i a . I t seems:that t h i s i n t e r e s t was l a r g e l y emotional, for the number of working women a c t u a l l y r e q u i r i n g such f a c i l i t i e s was small, but the issue became public and began to develop momentum. Most l e v e l s of government were un w i l l i n g to commit themselves, in any p r a c t i c a l way, to providing any sort of f a c i l i t i e s for young chil d r e n . Although the reason for t h e i r a c t i o n i s not cle a r , the Vancouver and V i c t o r i a School Boards were the exceptions. No doubt t h e i r t r a d i t i o n a l a s s o c i a t i o n with c h i l d r e n was an important factor. Certainly, they did not act 124 i n i t i a l l y from any commitment to the kindergarten i d e a l or the notion of e a r l y childhood education. But once they showed an i n t e r e s t in.providing some sort of f a c i l i t i e s for young children, the problem was g r a t e f u l l y handed over to them by welfare agencies and other l e v e l s of government. For some years, the fate of the f i r s t classes was i n doubt because some Trustees were unconvinced of t h e i r success, or, indeed, t h e i r neces-s i t y . But from the s t a r t , large sections of the public, p a r t i c u l a r l y the parents of those c h i l d r e n who attended a class, were wholeheartedly i n favour of kindergartens and more and more classes were c a l l e d for. The two Boards were constantly held back i n t h e i r expansion of kindergartens by lack of funds, for kindergarten had no p r i o r i t y with the Department of Education. The extent to which parents i n p a r t i c u l a r supported pre-school education, however, is shown by the rapid expansion of Co-operative Play Groups and private kindergartens, which were soon e n r o l l i n g far more pre-school c h i l d r e n than the schools. In the decade.of the 1960's, the United States again experienced an upsurge of in t e r e s t i n and concern for the young c h i l d . This generated much research which i n turn led to further i n t e r e s t , p a r t i c u l a r l y i n the area of early i n t e l l e c t u a l development. This time, the influence on Canada was more profound and B r i t i s h Columbia, at l e a s t , moved i n the same di r e c -t i o n as the United States, i f not quite as far. The movement i n the United States, spurred on by the current research, was towards early academic work, and i n B r i t i s h Columbia too, more emphasis came to be placed on pre-reading and number s k i l l s i n the kindergarten. It is d i f f i c u l t , however, to judge exactly how much the emphasis changed. The Department of Education published two curriculum guides over the years,. 125 one in 1954 and one in 1972. A comparison of the two does show an extra emphasis on s k i l l s learning i n the second, p a r t i c u l a r l y i n the area of reading. Within British.Columbia, and generally throughout Canada, educa-t i o n a l theorists stressed the importance of freedom for i n d i v i d u a l develop-ment rather than academic work during the kindergarten year, but i t is hard to say how much e f f e c t they had on the classrooms. There has always been a dilemma associated with the incorporation of kindergartens into public school systems. I t stems from the fact that both the methods and the aims of the kindergarten have d i f f e r e d to a c e r t a i n extent from those of the primary classes. As kindergarten has become a part of the system i t has always l o s t some of i t s freedom of outlook and method. On the other hand, i t has generally managed to pass some of this same freedom on to the primary grades. This occurred when t r a d i t i o n a l Froebelian kindergartens were made a part of the system at the end of the l a s t century. Glass s i z e was increased enormously, r e s u l t i n g i n a much more structured programme i n order to keep the class functioning smoothly. Moreover, two sessions were conducted each day, preventing teachers from working with parents. But, as a balance, some of the freedom and a c t i v i t y learning of the kindergarten began to penetrate the primary classrooms i n the form of songs, books, plants, pictures and construction work. The same loss of freedom also occurred in B r i t i s h Columbia between 1945 and 1972. In the kindergarten classes, more emphasis came to be placed on readiness s k i l l s and a tangible product, rather-than simply the f u l l e s t development of each i n d i v i d u a l i n h i s own time and his own way. But the kindergarten's loss was again the primary grades' gain. The continuity of both aims and methods in the early childhood years is now 126 commonly accepted in the primary grades, making many primary classes almost indistinguishable from the kindergarten. The difference between the two i s now generally so marginal that i t i s f a i r to say that the 1972 l e g i s l a t i o n did have a major e f f e c t on the education system of the province; i t e f f e c t i v e l y lowered the age of f i r s t school attendance from s i x to f i v e years. 127 BIBLIOGRAPHY PRIMARY SOURCES 1. Published A. Government Publications Alberta. Department of Education. . Report of the Royal Commission on Educational Planning: A Choice of Futures: A Future of Choices. 1970. B r i t i s h Columbia. Department of Education. "Addenda to the Report of the Pre-Primary Education Committee, to the Royal Commission on Education." 1960 (mimeographed) B r i t i s h Columbia. Department of Education. Annual Reports of the Public  Schools 1895-1975. B r i t i s h Columbia. 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Hughes and the Gospel of Education." (Ed.D. d i s s e r t a t i o n , U n i v e r s i t y of Toronto, 1966.) Corbett, B. "The Public School Kindergarten i n Ontario 1883-1967." Ed.D. d i s s e r t a t i o n , U n i v e r s i t y of Toronto, 1968.) Selman, G.R. "A.History of the Extension and Adult Education Services o the University of B r i t i s h Columbia." (M.A. thesis, University of B r i t i s h Columbia, 1963.) Skolrood, A.H. "The B r i t i s h Columbia Teachers Federation: A Study of I t History, Development, Interests and A c t i v i t i e s from 1916-1863." (Ed'.D. d i s s e r t a t i o n , University of Oregon, 1967.) Stewart, F. "The Canadian Education A s s o c i a t i o n . " (M.Ed, thesis, University of Toronto, 1965.) Tenant, P.R. . "Influence of Local School Boards on Central Education Authorities i n B r i t i s h Columbia." (M.A. thesis, U n i v e r s i t y of Chicago, 1962.) Wood, A. "John Harold Putman and the Roots of Progressive Education' i n the Ottawa Public Schools 1911-1923." (Ph.D. d i s s e r t a t i o n , University of Ottawa, 1975.) APPENDIX TABLE 1 Kindergarten and Grade 1 Enrolment i n V i c t o r i a and Vancouver 1945 - 1975 Vancouver V i c t o r i a Department of Education Figures School Board Figures Department of Education Figures ** School Board Figures Year 1 Kgtn. Grade 1 Kgtn. Kgtn. Grade 1 Kgtn. 1945-46 213 2601 137 211 1907 46-47 509* 4051 281 457 1062 47-48 351 4288 293 505 1131 48-49 351 4629 302 516 1247 49-50 650* 4830 304 523 1436 50-51 381 5138 304 511 1480 51-52 388 47 89 306 • 688 1341 52-53 487 5959 355 803 1688 53-54 480 6533 346 495 1893 54-55 502 5731 396 529 1865 55-56 804 6034 437 555 1925 56-57 972 6181 762 871 2017 57-58 1851 6151 1612 823 2071 58-59 1903 6106 1718 1036 1991 59-60 1924 5891 1717 1066 2150 60-61 2002 5756 1815 1026 2197 136 TABLE 1 (Cont'd) Vancouver V i c t o r i a Department of Education Figures School Board Figures Department of Education Figures School Board Figures. Year Kgtn. Grade 1 Kgtn. Kgtn. Grade 1 Kgtn. 1961-62 4716 5730 4462 1022 2345 62-63 5318 5781 4930 1263 2340 63-64 5591 5791 4554 1419 2453 64-65 5860 5926 5696 167 8 2615 65-66 6373 6418 5984 1778 2699 66-67 6299 67 82 6048 1736 2610 67-68 5947 6405 5958 1849 2422 68-69 5944 6005 5772 1819 2457 69-70 5648 6069 497 8 1800 237 8 70-71 5124 5649 4671 1692 2306 71-72 4747 5049 4368 1537 2056 72-73 4488 4705 4365 1529 1808 73-74 4484 4503 4322 1595 1772 74-75 4447 4653 4357 1633 17 85 Department of Education figures taken from Department of Education, Annual Reports 1945-75. Vancouver School Board figures taken from VSB, Minutes, 1945-75. N. B. Department of Education and School Board figures do not t a l l y exactly because School Board figures represent current enrolment and Department of Education figures represent t o t a l yearly enrolment for grant purposes. *These figures appear to be incorrect, but no reason for the mistake is apparent. Given the number of kindergartens operating i n these two years, the numbers are impossibly high. * * V i c t o r i a School Board figures not a v a i l a b l e . 137 TABLE 2 Total Kindergarten Enrolment i n B r i t i s h Columbia 1945-1976 Year Total Enrolment Year Total Enrolment 1944-45 260 1964-65 11469 45-46 507 65-66 13080 46-47 1009 66-67 14671 47-48 987 67-68 16011 48-49 1129 68-69 18203 49-50 1433 69-70 21117 50-51 1215 70-71 21051 51-52 1499 71-72 21657 52-53 1834 72-73 24217 53-54 1587 73-74 33142 54-55 1905 74-75 3 6 87 4 55-56 2199 75-76 37072 56-57 2680 76-77 35071 57-58 3522 58-59 3889 59-60 3699 60-61 3850 61-62 7031 62-63 8352 63-64 9736 

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