Welsh Newspapers

Search 15 million Welsh newspaper articles

Hide Articles List

7 articles on this Page



New Schools for Treherbert.


New Schools for Treherbert. GRAND OPENING FUNCTION. ADDRESS BY MR LLOYD GEORGE. M.P. Truly may it be stated that the opening ceremony in connection with the Treherbert New Infants' and Girls' School, which took place on Thursday last, was a red letter day in the history of education of Upper Rhondda. The event was looked forward to locally with the keenest interest, and it is not too much to I say that the jubilant manner in which it was celebrated did credit to both the inhabitants and the local members of the district. The preparations were perfect, and of a most ela- borate character. The new schools are situated on the brow of a hill overlooking the valley, and are substantially built, well ventilated, and thoroughly equipped. The two schools have been built apart, and each contains a large schoolroom and four classrooms, with the customary cloak room and lavatories. Ae- commodation has been provided for 367 scho- lars in the infant school, and at the girls' school, 250. The schools have been built at a cost of £4.528 on a site leased from the Mar- quis of Bute. Mr Jacob Rees, architect to the Ystradyfodwg School Board, who was the designer, displayed much originality in the whole construction, especially in connection with the covered play grounds at the basement of the schools, which were provided in addi- tion to the open air play grounds. The con- tractors. Messrs J. Evans and Sons, Treher- bert, also deserve complimenting for the splen- did workmanship and the prompt manner in which the schools were erected. The local members, Messrs David Williams, and D. R. Jones, spared nothing in providing for the visitors, and the convenience of the opening 'fiaiction. On Wednesday evening, a soiree was held in honour of the event, to which a large number of teachers and voung people of the Upper Rhondda were invited. During the evening songs were rendered bv Misses Elv and Annie Jenkins,, Mr G. P. Williams, and W. Jones, and selections bv the Treherbert Brass Band. After refreshments were partaken of a very enjoyable dance was participated in, Mr E. R. Jones Ynyswen Schools, officiating as M.C. The singing of the National Anthem brought a very enjoyable evening to a close. OPENING CEREMONY. The formal opening of the schools took place on Thursday, glorious weather prevailing. The streets were cray with bunting and streamers bearing words of welcome. The opening ceremony was performed by Miss Ada Jones, Maindv, Ynyshir, the only lady member of the Board. Mr D. Lloyd George, M.P. for the Carnarvon Boroughs, together with Mabon, M.P., delivered addresses. The arrival of th* two o'clock train, by which the hon. mem- bers, Miss Jones' visitors, travelled, was wel- comed in by the firing of rockets and fog sig- nals. They were received upon the platform bv Alderman W. Morgan, J.P., Rev W. Mor- ris (vice-chairman of Llie Board). Councillor D. Williams, Mr D. R. Jones. and other gentlemen. Amongst the arrivals were Miss Ada Jones, Mr D. Lloyd, George, M.P., W. Abraham, M.P., Mrs Abraham, Mr T. Bevan (chairman of the Board) Rev E. W. Davies, Ton; Mr D. Thomas, Trealaw; Mr W. G. Howells, (clerk to the School Board). Upon tiu arrival of the visitors on the platform a procession was formed,headed by the Treher- bert Brass Band, followed by the above-named ladies and gentlemen, together with a large number of clergy and ministers and prominent citizens, including Dr Warburton, Mrs D. R. Jones, Mr Enoch Davies. Rev W. Lewis (R.D.) M. Enoch Davies, Rev and Mrs W. Charles, Treorky; Rev D. R. Jones, Treorky, Messrs D. Glass, R. Davies. J. Hiley. Councillor D. Daronwy Isaac, E. Cule, and Mr D. Beynon. The road lending from the station to the new schools was lined with hundreds of people,the school children, who were neatly attired,cheer- ing lustily as the procession wended its way towards "the schools. Upon arriving at the schools the opening ceremony was at once pro- ceeded with. The beautifully designed gold keys were presented to Mr Lloyd George and Miss Ada Jones, the former by Mr D. R. Jones and the latter by Alderman W. Morgan. The Infants' Schools were opened by the hon. mem- ber. and the Girls' by Miss Ada Jones. Aftel an inspection of the building, the company re- tired to the girls' department, where Mr T. Be,an, chairman of the School Board, together with the other members of the Board, presi- ded over a large attendance. t Mr T. Bevan, in addressing the meeting. said that the old raying was that a prophet hath no honour in his own country. He was glad to find one exception and he had much pleasure in calling upon Miss Ada Jones to open the new schools. Miss Jones had gained the respect of all the members of the Board- (applause)—and he hoped she would still con- tinue to take a lively interest in the work of the Board. That was only one of the many honours conferred upon her. With reference to their worthv local members, they could take it from him that they were very energetic and aggressive gentlemen, and ought to be thanked in a large degree for the new and excellent schools—(hear, hear)—although every member of the Board felt that the old schools were dilapidated and obsolete. They had exper- ienced a great difficulty in obtaining a site,and had had to pay an extravagant price for it. However, they had had to accept the inevi- table. Their motto was efficiency consistent with economy, and to properly equip their schools and secure perfect sanitation in order to protect the health and physique of both teachers and scholars. (Hear. hear). Some of their schools were old. and they had altered them to keep abreast with the times, and they endeavoured to procure the best staff of teach- ers possible, and to furnish the schools with the best and most modern apparatus. If their annual results were perused they would be found to compare most favourably with any in the kingdom. No doubt all nresent had fol- lowed the discussions of the Higher Grade School question. It was a bold suggestion to make that they would build two new Higher Gradf School- The powerful specch made b\ th. vice-chairman had established beyond dcubt that the question was of vital interest, and that th" children of the parish should en- joy equal privileges.. He was pleased to state that fi committee had been appointed to carrv oU- the scheme. Some people might find fault with increasing the rates; if they were compared they would be rounel to he most reasonable. The rates varied from Is to 2s 6d it,- the, £ District Council rate, 2s 6d; poor- rate, Is Od; counter rate—for which they got rext to nothing in retnrn-7d: educational late. Is m th3 E. It might interest them to know that the total cost to equip each child was £ 8. Yearly cost of the parish. £1 per head,, including, maintenance, building, and demonstration. Taking the average stay of a child in school as being 8 years, it only came tn a total of £ 8. It was now too late in the day to say they did not get the advantage cf an early education, and argue as to why they should contribute to the education of others. Education was now a question of necessity, rh! success of every nation depending upon its completeness in this direction. As chairman of the Beard, it was his duty to say a word to parents present. Now that they had provided that excellent building, it was their duty to co-operate with them ani to take full advan- tages of the privileges bv sending their child- ren to school regularly, and thus assisting m reducing the cost per head. Miss Ada Jones, on rising, said it was hardly fair to ask her to speak in the presence of Mr Lloyd George and Mabon. (Laughter). She wished to sincerely and heartily thank them for the kind and hearty manner in which she had been received, and could assure them that it afforded her the greatest pleasure in doing the little she had done as a member of the School Board. (Hear, hear). She never re- gretted having given up any form of pleasure or entertainment in order to attend the Board meetings. Her duty bad been her greatest pleasure. The Chairman next invited Mr D. Lloyd George, M.P., to address the company. After congratulating the Chairman upon his excellent speech, and Miss Jones upon her grand maiden oratorical effort—(laughter)— the hon. gentkman said his first pleasant duty was to thank them for the kind manner in which they had received him, and also to con- gratulate them upon the magnificent buildings they had erected for the education of the young in that part of the Valley. (Hear, hear). They had been founded by the people, maintained and controlled and run entirely in the interest of the people, and not for any part or section, however worthy they might be. He was very pleased to hear from Mr Bevan of the excellent efforts made in the Valleys for the cause of education. He considered that the education movement in Wales and its de- velopment during the last 30 or 40 years was one of the most striking of modern times. (Hear, hear). Any one' who read any work upon education could not fail to be struck by the effort of the Welsh people in educating their children during the present generation. (Applause). There was one thin7 which the chairman had stated in has address with which he felt highly pleased, and that was that they were doing all they could towards the success of Higher Education in the Valley. Their School Board was one of the finest in the king- dom—{cheers)—and thev had gone in for a graduated system of education. First of all they had the primary schools, then a couple of Higher Grade Schools, and then a secondary school, and he was exceedinglv glad to find that the experiment had proved such a success, and lie was told that they were considering the advisability of erecting two additional Higher Grade Schools in the Valley. There was a great advantage in setting up these schools for the sake of secondary education, and from one point of view there was nothing more important to the nation than its second- ary education, and now they were beginning to realise its value in Wales. The endeavours of Wales were not to be compared with those of England for a moment. At the present time they were paying in Wales 5d. per head towards her education, .whereas in England they paid only lid. per head; consequently the next generation of Wales would be ten times better men than the English generation.(Laugh. te" and cheers). He would not say that they were not so at the present time, but the dis- parity would be ten times greater. If they went to any county in Buropo or America they would find tho graduated system in its per- fection. In Switzerland, the education of children was a state matter and not a private speculation. The community benefitted by this, and it was also better for the State it- self, being more economical. In Switzerland. the mother of democracy, they had recognised it as their duty to provide the best education for all classes of children. (Hear, hear). There they had primary schools. Higher Grade Schools, Secondary Schools, and their Uiiivcr- sities, and the result was the Swiss people were the best educated people of the world. We cannot hold our own with them when we have to compete. The same thing applied to Germany. Any one who read their pamphlets would soon discover the fact. Any child in the land, irrespective of class or means, could obtain the best educational advantages. The adoption of the graduated system was the reason that Germany had been so successful. The same thing applied to America. The great difficulty experienced in regard to secon- dary education in Wales was the lack of funds. We supposed that that was the chronic diffi- culty of most people. (Laughter). It is won- derful what a great amount of good it can do. (Loud laughter). Another difficulty experi- enced was that a great amount of the best time, temper, and energy of the teachers in the Higher Grade Schools was expended in im- parting elementary knowledge to the children. The children should be thoroughly grounded in the elementary work before thev entered the higher schools and colleges. When child- ren were once grounded in the elements of knowledge, they could handle the higher sub- jects with greater dexterity. Thus they were relieved in a financial success when they were building Higher Grade Schools; they were re-illy giving financial support to the secondary school. He congratulated their Board upon their school at Pentre. which had an accom- modation for 400, and was perfectly crowded. He was also told that the Ferndalo school was also crowded, and he ventured to say if they built two more schools those also would be crowded. There was nothing that he was prouder of than the thirst for knowledge exist- ing in the land, and which would socn make it one of the leading nations in the world. There was an idea in Switzerland, the base and foun- dation of education, that every child, however rich or poor, was entitled to the privileges of the best education, and that was the system they were trying to establish in Wales. (Hear, hear). The poorer the man was the better his education ought to be, and the greater was h;3 plea for being educated. The children of the rich had their privileges, advantages, and op- portunities. Ignorance made no difference to their living; it was the children of the poor who needed educaiion. (Cheers). He wished to say one thing: As long as a child was well educated, he would not be poor to the end of his days; he would be as rich as the richest man in the land: as Ruskin put it, he would keep the company of kings, kings of literature, kings of thought, kings who did not sit on thrones and wield sceptres, but who swerved the realms of the mind, which were infinite. The best education was not the teaching of a irreat amount of Euclid, geometry, and cribbed C<Bsar—(laughter)—but that which t aught the child to think in the right way. They did not want a sameness about the system of educa- tion similar to the system of making sausages in America,all the' same size,colour.and quali'v. but something which would develop the p-enitis and character of the mind itself, that was the system they wanted in this country. Give a. child a good education, and he would never be poor, but could be introduced into the best of society. (Applause). The dawn of the new educational year was upon them. Education was not for the few nor for those who had exceptional nrivileges, but for all. The poorer a man's circumstances the greater is his need for education, and the intellect which God had given him should put him in the way of ob- taining it. (Loud applause). Mr W. Abraham, M.P.. said they were never prouder of their country and countrymen than when they met on occasions cf that kind. (Applause). It was not necessary to-day to go to the Rhondda Valley to preach the necessity of elementary education. He was clad to say on behalf of their School Beard—which was second to none in the kingdom—(applause)— that they had done all in their power to fm ther the interests of education. The standard of education should be raised so as to bring capital and labour on more equal basis, not by means of lowering capital but by bringing la- bour up; labour had been down so long, the aid of the lever of education was wan ed to bring them nT), not that thev wanted to do away with labour, but that they wanted the machine of the present to be the machinist oi the future. (Applause). Mr Evan Cule, Treherbert, spcke cn the let educational progress. He said that in that parish the author of the first translation of the I Holy Writ had lived, and that he was an an- cestor of Councillor Llewelyn and Mr Morgan Llewelyn, and several respectable families oi that district. The Rev W. Lewis, Rural Dean, a member of the School Board, in proposing a hearty vote of thanks to the speakers, ob- served that Mr Cule's remarks about the first translation of Holy Writ should be taken with a great deal of salt. ("Oh. oh!" and laugter). Aldermain W. Morgan seconded the vote, which was carried with acclamation. In replying, Mr Lloyd George said that he had never seen a more striking and effective syllabus of moral and religious instruction than that provided by the Committee of the Ystrad- yfodwg Board, who were to be complimented upon the intelligence and good sense which they had shown. (Loud applause). An adjournment was then made to the In- fants' department of the school, where the company were entertained to an excellent lun- cheon contributed by Messrs David Williams and D. R. Jones, the two local members of the Board. To the Editor. Sir.-Will you very kindly allow me to ask the Rev W. Lewis, Rural Dean, Ystradyfod. wg, through your columns, to name what part of the speech I delivered at the opening of the schools at Treherbert on Thursday, March Sth, required "to be received with a grain of | .>alt, as I thought it was not opportune to reply then? I do so through your paper.— Yours respectfully, EVAN CULE.