Series GR-0899 - Correspondence and other material

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Correspondence and other material

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  • textual record

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Reference code

GR-0899

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Dates of creation area

Date(s)

  • 1954-1970 (Creation)
    Creator
    British Columbia. Council of Public Instruction

Physical description area

Physical description

Originals, 2 m

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Archival description area

Name of creator

(1891-1971)

Biographical history

From 1891 until 1971 the Public Schools Act provided for a "Council of Public Instruction composed of the Minister [of Education] and other members of the Executive Council of British Columbia." As chairman of the council, it was the minister's duty to advise his cabinet colleagues "on all matters relating to education in the province." In other words, when the cabinet met to consider educational matters it was functioning as the Council of Public Instruction. The council was the highest level in the province's educational bureaucracy. It had a wide range of powers that it exercised by issuing rules and through orders in council. The rules of the council dealt with general regulations while orders concerned specific situations. The powers of the council were laid out in the Public Schools Act. In general terms, its powers may be summarized under seven categories: definition, regulation, approval, investigation and adjudication, appointment, and establishment. Through its powers of definition the council could establish or abolish school districts, define the length of school terms, and decide the classes of teachers' certificates. Under its powers of regulation it could set conditions for establishing schools, determine conditions under which Bible readings were held in the schools, and establish the general duties of school teachers. Through its powers of approval it formally sanctioned the use of certain textbooks. Under the heading of authorization the council approved the course of study used in the schools and made grants for vocational programmes. Investigation and adjudication involved cases of disputed school board elections and the suspension of teachers' certificates. The council's powers of appointment allowed it to appoint school trustees and members of the Provincial Board of Examiners, while under the category of establishment the council could establish special training programmes and summer schools for teachers. The Council of Public Instruction ceased to exist on 02 April 1971 by an amendment to the Public Schools Act.

Custodial history

Scope and content

Correspondence, minutes, briefs, memoranda, etc., of the Council of Public Instruction. Most of the records in this unit date from the 1967-1970 period. Included are records relating to Indian schools, private schools, universities and colleges, curriculum development, vocational programmes, and the Dept. of Education's Instructional Media Committee. Also included are records of the department's Community Programmes Branch which, in April 1970, was transferred to the Department of Recreation and Conservation. The minister's and the superintendents correspondence, and the Accreditation and Legislation Committee files in this collection are restricted. Until 1971 the Public Schools Act provided for a "Council of Public Instruction composed of the Minister [of Education] and other members of the Executive Council of British Columbia." As chairman of the Council, it was the minister's duty to advise his cabinet colleagues "on all matters relating to education in the province." In other words, when the cabinet met to consider educational matters it was functioning as the Council of Public Instruction. The Council was the highest level in the province's educational bureaucracy. It had a wide range of powers which it exercised by issuing "rules" and through "orders-in-council." The Rules of the Council dealt with general regulations while Orders concerned specific situations. The powers of the Council were laid out in the Public Schools Act. In general terms, its powers may be summarized under seven categories, namely- definition, regulation, approval, investigation and adjudication, appointment, and establishment. Through its powers of definition the Council could establish or abolish school districts, define the length of school terms, and decide the classes of teachers' certificates. Under its powers of regulation it could set conditions for establishing schools, determine conditions under which Bible readings were held in the schools, and establish the general duties of school teachers. Through its powers of approval it formally sanctioned the use of certain textbooks. Under the heading of authorization the Council approved the course of study used in the schools and made grants for vocational programmes. Investigation and adjudication involved cases of disputed school board elections and the suspension of teachers' certificates. The Council's powers of appointment allowed it to appoint school trustees and members of the provincial Board of Examiners, while under the category of establishment the Council could establish special training programmes and summer schools for teachers. GR-0899 consists of correspondence, minutes, briefs, and memoranda of the Council. The outside dates for material in the collection are 19541970, but most of the files date from the period 19671969. The collection includes material relating to Indian schools, private schools, universities and colleges, the Provincial Board of Examiners, curriculum development, and the Department of Education Instructional Media Committee. Also included are records of the department's Community Programmes Branch (19641970), a branch which was transferred to the Department of Recreation and Conservation on 01 Apr 1970.

Notes area

Physical condition

Immediate source of acquisition

Transferred from the Ministry of Education in 1980.

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Script of material

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Restrictions on access

These records are restricted. Please contact the BC Archives for information about access.

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Accruals

General note

The Council of Public Instruction ceased to exist on 02 Apr 1971 by an amendment to the Public Schools Act.

General note

Accession number(s): GR-0899

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