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more of them, have been in our Sunday school. One, upon being talked to upon the subject, seemed very much affected. He said he did not know what to do about it; he wished to leave that mode of life, and be sometimes never went near his companions for a week or two together; but they would decoy him out to go and play with them, and by that means the\' got him along with them again, and he could not resist the temptation held out to him. Through this boy I learnt that this gang of boys emulate each other to do the most daring actions. One of them said, " I got a gold watch out of a gentleman's pocket, in the Borough, and you never did such a thing as that yet!" By this emulation they go on from one thing to another, till they perpetrate the most wicked deeds, and until they come to the gallows at last. And we have likewise children attending our Sunday schools, who are either the servants or children of prostitutes living in the neighbourhood; and it appears that they have children bred to the same mode of lite, who would be very glad to leave it, if any other means were presented by which they might earn their livelihood.
Mr. William Freeman Lloyd called in and Examined.
WHAT is your business, and where do you reside?—I am a Blackwell-hall factor, carrying on business at Masou's-hall, Biisinghall-street.
Are you acquainted with the state of the children of the poor in the metropolis?—Yes; chiefly from my acquaintance with Sunday schools, and with those who conduct them, and from having visited the poor at their own habitations.
Are there in your opinion many who have no instruction? —Certainly a great many.
in what parts of the town chiefly ?—In St. Giles's, Saffronhill, Tothillfields. St. Catherine's, and Wapping, where there lie many Irish children.
Do you think that Irish children are the most neglected ?— Certainly.
From what cause ?—From the priests discouraging their attendance at schools where the Bible is used: the Catholic children sometimes come into a school, but they seldom stay long.
Co you belong to a society called the Sunday School L'oion ?—Yes, I am one ot the secretaries.
Wliai is the nature of that society?—It is a voluntary" fcsociaiiou of gratuitous Sunday school teachers, and others feeling an interest in the instruction of the young, for the purpose of extending Sunday schools as much as possible.
By a voluntary association, do you mean an association of teachers of various sects of religion ?—Yes, certainly.
What are its objects?—Its objects are to promote the eKtensionof Sunday schools, to lead to the formation of new, and the revival of old schools, and to the establishment of similar institutions throughout the kingdom.
Does it extend to the kingdom at large, as well as to the metropolis ?—Primarily to the metropolis, and more remotely to the kingdom at large.
Are you able to form an opinion of the number of children educated in Sunday schools in the metropolis?—I have drawn out a statement as nearly as I can, which I will deliver in. [It was read, as follows:] Sunday Schools: Scholars.
East London district y,291
Ditto Adults 580
West ditto*. ..ditto 8,708
Southwaik - • - - ditto 7,361
North and central ditto. 9.520
I think there are several Sunday schools, either not known or not reported in the above; 1 think the number of Sunday scholars in the metropolis is about 40,000.
How many teachers are employed in those schools?— About 4000.
Are all the teachers gratuitous?—All of them.
And the Secretaries and other officers of the society ?—
What particular advantages do you think arise from this association?—It tends to promote general zeal and union in advancing the cause of Sunday schools.
Has it been the means of producing an increased desire in the poor, for the education of their children ?—Certainly.
Do you imagine there is any difference in the progress which children make in Sunday schools and day schools ?— They seem to pay more attention on Sundays, but it depends on the system upon which the schools are conducted; in some Sunday schools, the teachers not only instruct on a Sunday, but in addition to this, the most advanced scholars are taught writing and arithmetic during the week; the scholars also attend regularly public worship, and are taught to reverence the Sabbath.
How many children does one teacher generally instruct?—• From ten to fifteen is the general average; some teachers attend only part of the day.
What difference is there between a Sunday school and a day school ?—Sunday schools instruct those poor children whose time is fully employed in labour during the week days, and to them this is the only opportunity of gaining instruction; the children also learn their lessons during the week, to repeat to their teachers on Sunday; and the teachers visit their children at their own habitations, and procure the co-operation of their parents, and watch over their conduct as much as they can.
What in your opinion could be done to extend the benefit of education throughout the metropolis? — I conceive it would be desirable to investigate the situation of the poor.
What is the advantage of gratuitous teachers over paid teachers in Sunday schools?—It is the great excellence of the Sunday school system, that it employs gratuitous teachers, who are incalculably preferable to paid teachers, because they perform their duty better; many of them are persons in respectable situations of life, and the children perceive the disinterested attention of their teachers, and therefore feel a greater regard for them, and pay more attention to their instructions. If the 4000 teachers in the metropolis were paid at the rate of 2s. each Sunday, it would cost upwards of 20,0001. per annum.
Do you imagine that the generality of poor children in the various parishes of London are educated in the parochial schools?—No, comparatively very few.
Do you know of any plan which could be adopted to increase that number in the day schools ?—1 think it would be desirable for the inhabitants of the several parishes where they are formed, to investigate the state of the schools, and to superintend them as much as lies in their power.
What do you calculate the expense, per annum, of teaching a child in a Sunday school ?—Exclusive of the expense of rent (of which it is impossible to form a general calculation) sixpence per head is as much as it costs.
Does that include books?—Books, fire, candles, and all other expenses, except rent.
Are there candles used in a Sunday school I—Yes.
Do they teach them in an evening?—Many of them, where the children attend public worship in the afternoon.
If children were not clothed in parochial schools, but that expense saved, might not a much greater number of children be educated than are now, in the respective parishes of London?—Certainly, the expense of clothing one child would educate several; a great many more might have instruction; 1 suppose nearly the whole uneducated poor of trie metropolis.
Do yo think it is better to give education to a great number, than instruction and clothing only a few?—Certainly, much better.
Are there not many poor children in want of cloihes to appear decent in schools?—There are some few; but ihey are chiefly of the lowest description of poor; I think most of the parents are in general very well able to clothe their children.
Would not occasional clothing, by way of reward, have a belter effect than regular clothing at certain periods ?—I conceive so, because it would be unexpected and conditional.
Might not a smaller number in parochial schools be regularly clothed, and children taken, either in rotation or according to their behaviour, into that number?—Certainly, I think it would be preferable to giving clothes indiscriminately to the good and the bad.
Have occasional rewards a good effect in stimulating children to exertion ?—A very good effect.
Have you ever witnessed any of those effects, in the schools to which you belong?—Yes; t have known of children excited to uncommon exertion and assiduity.
Do not the poor frequently claim regular allowances as a right, rather than receive them as a boon?—Very frequently so.
Are they not more grateful for occasional gifts than regular bounty?—Certainly.
Have you ever observed that children in Sunday schools improved in their dress and appearance, within a short time after their admission?— Yes, exceedingly so; their habits of decency and order vastly improve; they become clean in their persons and respectful in their behaviour, and, from being dirty, ill-behaved children, become decent and creditable.
What is the cause of this?—When they see other children better clothed than themselves, they apply to their parents for clothes, and generally succeed and get better clothes.
Do you imagine this induces parents to be more industrious and frugal?—Certainly; they are very desirous for the creditable appearance of their children, and they often deny themselves many gratifications to procure clothing for them.
If this occurs with the parents of Sunday school children, might not the parents of children in day schools be induced to adopt the same frugality and industry and care of their children?—lean see no difference, except that the parent! of Sunday school children are generally more necessitous than those of charity school children, because they want their labour in the week.
Is it the practice in charity schools, where they do not give regular clothing, for benevolent individuals frequently to make presents of clothing to the children?—Yes, it is very frequently the case when any children are observed by benevolent persons to be in a very destitute situation, to give clothing to the most ragged, which excites their gratitude to their snperiore.
Is h not desirable to excite a more general disposition to instruct the children of the poor throughout the parishes in the metropolis? —Certainly; I conceive all parish schools would be more useful, if the housekeepers and inhabitants properly looked after them, and felt an interest in their prosperity.; it would be desirable if masters, when they wanted servants, wonld see that they were well educated, and this would induce parents to pay more attention to the education of their children.
If an annual examination of the children in parochial sehools were to take place, might not this excite art additional interest in the parish f—Certainly so, if it were properly compacted; but I think girls on those occasions should not be brought too forward, as modesty is the ornament of the female character.
Do you think the object of parochial schools might be promoted by an annual meeting?—It would excite the benevolent regard of the inhabitants, and increase the interest felt for the prosperity of the school.
Would this annual examination stimulate the master to prepare the children?—Very much so, and would induce the children to strive 60 get forward.
Would the school rooms be large enough to admit the parents, the subscribers, and the children?—[ think not in general; commodious school rooms are wanted very much, aH over the metropolis.
Then how could they be accommodated?—I should think the parish church would be a very suitable place in general.
What has been your plan of annual examination?—The children are generally informed on what subjects they will be examined, and the teachers prepare them accordingly.
hr what way are they examined: —They are generally called op, and they repeat chapters or psalms from the scriptures, and hymns and poetry, which they have committed to memory; and sometimes are asked plain questions from the scriptures.
Do the moral sentiments conveyed by the pieces committed to memory, in your opinion, produce right principles in the mind* of children?—•Yes, they very frequently recur rot. if- 2 *