Educational Opportunities for Girls

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Do you agree with the view that the education act of 1870 was a significant step forward in the educational opportunities for girls?

To a limited extent, I agree with the view that the education act of 1870 was a significant step forward in the educational opportunities for girls because they were given a compulsory education, whereas prior to the act, many girls did not attend school at all, formally or informally. All sources agree with this as they express that girls were now forced to attend school, although all sources imply that working class girls may be excused on certain days(wash days) I also agree that the education act was a significant step forward because the act meant that local authorities now had to build schools for girls aged 5-13. However, from my own knowledge, I know that these schools were over-populated and were too strict. Also, these schools only taught subjects like needle work and cookery, these schools were said to ‘train rather than educate’. I think that the education act of 1870 was a significant step forward in the educational opportunities for girls because the girls were now able to attend school whereas before the act, they had not. Some girls from the upper class may have been given an education by a governess or by a member of their family, but children from middle and working class families could not afford an education or would be helping their mothers at home. Also the pauper children may have to work in the work houses. This is shown in source 17 on line 46 where it says ‘when young, they were kept at home to help raise younger siblings’ it also explicitly suggests that children were then sent into the domestic services as their parents could not live without the wage. Also, local authorities had to build schools for girls aged 5-13; this means that the government was taking education for girls seriously, as they built the schools ready for the girls to be educated. However, in source 18 (our only primary source) it...
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