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By John Calam

Alex Lord, a pioneer inspector of rural BC colleges stocks in those reminiscences his reviews in a province slightly out of the level trainer period. vacationing via giant northern territory, using unreliable transportation, and enduring climatic extremes, Lord grew to become conversant in the aspirations of distant groups and their religion within the humanizing results of tiny assisted colleges. En course, he played in resolute but resourceful model the supervisory services of a most sensible executive educator, constructing an academic philosophy of his personal according to an knowing of the provincial geography, a reverence for citizenship, and a piece ethic tuned to problem and accomplishment.

Although no longer accomplished, those memoires invite the reader to adventure the British Columbia that Alex Lord knew. via his phrases, we suffer the problems of commute during this mountainous province. We meet some of the strange characters who inhabited this final frontier and examine in their hopes, fears, joys, sorrows, and eccentricities. extra really, we're reminded of the old value of the one-room rural college and its position as an fundamental device of neighborhood cohesion.

John Calam has equipped the memoirs in accordance with the areas in which Lord travelled. He has integrated in his creation a biography of Alex Lord, a short description of the British Columbia he knew, a comic strip of its public schooling approach, and an evaluate of where Lord’s writing now occupies between different works on schooling and society.

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Extra info for Alex Lord's British Columbia: Recollections of a Rural School Inspector, 1915-1936

Sample text

Six years after the last spike had been driven, less than half of the 125 North of Fifty-Three 41 stations on the British Columbia portion of the railroad had any permanent population except section crews and there were less than a dozen of those with over a hundred people. Prince George (replacing the much older Fort George), Vanderhoof, Burns Lake, Smithers, Hazelton, and Terrace, with populations ranging from 300 to 1,000, served districts which were vast in area but pitifully small in people.

It not only reveals the frustrating details of parental jealousies, amorous importunities, personal danger, and heartrending loneliness tormenting less fortunate rural teachers, but also speculates on why such cries for help often went unheeded by an education department convinced rural schooling improved year by year. The second piece, a tight account of 'the interplay between intentions and consequences' in provincial educational policy, probes ethnicity in British Columbia society, a question inherent in Lord's narrative, but lacking conscious inspection.

Tate, the older Australian raised to observe Victorian English values and employed within an ultra-centralized public school system seized hold of progressive education, not Lord, the younger Canadian and United States neighbour who, despite the 1925 Putman/Weir advocacy, was little inclined to espouse its 'progressive' cause. As with ironies in general, this one is easier to identify than to explain. 71 Since Lord first measured its reaches over seventy years ago, British Columbia has changed dramatically both in the ever-widening scope of city existence and in the increasing complexity of communication networks enhancing rural life.

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