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British Columbia. Dept. of Education
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Various reports from Department of Municipal Affairs

  • GR-0395
  • Series
  • 1936-1954

This series consists of various reports from Department of Municipal Affairs, including, a report of the Board of Arbitration established under the Residence and Responsibility Act (1936), including correspondence of the Board pertaining to cases arbitrated; report of the Commission of Inquiry into Educational Financing (Cameron Report, 1945) and correspondence of the Minister and Deputy Minister of Municipal Affairs relating to educational costs in various municipalities; correspondence, minutes of meetings, and draft legislation respecting airport zoning, correspondence and reports on annual proceedings (1949-1953) of the B.C. Aviation Council.

British Columbia. Dept. of Municipal Affairs. Office of the Minister

Terry Finney papers

Finney joined the Royal Air Force in 1924 as a Pilot Officer and immigrated to Canada in 1929. He moved to British Columbia from Montreal in 1933 and prepared aviation correspondence courses for the Dept. of Education, was active in the Aero Club of British Columbia and other aviation clubs and trained pilots during the Second World War and civilians in the post-war years.

The records includes Finney's log-books, 1924-1939, log-book of Ruth V. Johnson, 1946-1951, biographical material, personal papers, correspondence with the Aero Club of B.C, Marjorie L. Todd and others, Department of Education aviation correspondence courses and examinations, and miscellaneous material.

Superintendent of Education correspondence inward

  • GR-1445
  • Series
  • 1887-1894

Consists of correspondence inward to Superintendents John Jessop (1872-1878), C.C. McKenzie (1878-1884), and S.D. Pope (1884-1899). Types of records include petitions for school buildings, applications for teaching posts, minutes of local school boards, school trustees' reports, etc. This series may be used in conjunction with GR-0449 (Superintendent of Education, Indexes to Correspondence Inward, 1881-1915) and GR-0450 (Superintendent of Education, Correspondence Outward, 1872-1919).

Researchers should also be aware of the Correspondence Inward files of the Provincial Secretary, 1871-1892 (GR-0526). Since the Provincial Secretary was responsible for the Education Department, these files contain many records pertaining to teachers, schools, and education matters in general. Access to documents in GR-0526 is through GR-0524 (Provincial Secretary. Registers and indexes of letters inward, 1872-1924). Documents pertaining to education, etc. are indexed under the headings "SCHOOLS", and "EDUCATION, SUPERINTENDENT".

British Columbia. Superintendent of Education

Speeches on education

  • GR-0292
  • Series
  • 1967; 1969

The series consists of speeches given by S.N.F. Chant (Dean of Arts at the University of British Columbia between 1949 and 1964): On university freedom, 1967, and The future of higher education in British Columbia, 1969.

British Columbia. Dept. of Education

Speech by G.M. Weir to BCLA

  • GR-1716
  • Series
  • 1946

This series contains a typescript of speech given to the British Columbia Library Association convention by Minister of Education, Dr. G.M. Weir on 13 May 1946. Weir's speech, given in Nanaimo, provided a general review of the government's educational policies and priorities.

British Columbia. Dept. of Education

School Inspectors reports and records

  • GR-0456
  • Series
  • 1916, 1940-1946

This series consists of district and municipal school inspectors' reports. Records include correspondence inward and outward primarily between inspectorate No. 2, and the Assistant Superintendent of Education (1916); and reports on teachers filed by inspectors' names (1940-1946).

Reports for 1916 were prepared for the Superintendent of Education, Alexander Robinson; reports for the period 1940-1946 were submitted to the Chief Inspector of Schools, Dr. H.B. King. Also included are reports from the Inspector of High Schools, the Inspector of Technical Education, and the Director of the Home Economics branch for the years 1941-1946. The reports for the 1940s deal with schools throughout the province and so provide a detailed record of the state of public education at that time.

Generally, the reports contain evaluations of school buildings, equipment and grounds, along with assessments of the organization and management of individual classes within the schools. The reports also included evaluations of the teachers working in the various schools.

The reports were originally filed under the names of the school inspectors, an arrangement which has been maintained here. However, to facilitate research on particular schools and communities, an effort has been made to identify the boundaries of the different school inspectorates.

Prior to 1946 and the advent of well-defined school districts, boundaries of the various inspectorates were sometimes imprecise; the inspectorates varied in size and did not always coincide with municipal, rural, or even regional areas. The inspector of schools in Agassiz, for example, also reported on schools at Alert Bay; similarly, the inspector responsible for Port Moody also looked after schools in Saanich and Powell River. Researchers are, accordingly, advised to use this collection with GR-01492 (Directories of School Inspectorates, 1937 - 1946).

British Columbia. Dept. of Education

School inspectors' reports

  • GR-0122
  • Series
  • 1918-1957

The series consists of School Inspectors' reports created by the Dept. of Education between 1918 and 1957. The reports are arranged alphabetically, by name of school or community, for the years 1918-1938; thereafter, reports are filed alphabetically by name of teacher.

Evaluations of a number of private schools are included, as well as assessments of manual training and domestic science programmes in various schools. These reports contain evaluations of individual teachers and assessments of education programmes in all types of schools throughout the province.

The report forms varied over the years, but in most instances they contain information on teachers' qualifications, teaching methods and classroom discipline, pupils' progress, and the availability and condition of teaching equipment. Early reports on provincial elementary schools also contain information on the size and condition of the school buildings and grounds.

As a rule, the inspectors' reports were arranged alphabetically, by name of school inspected, and filed chronologically under various categories. During the years 1918-1937, the main categories were "Elementary Schools," "High Schools and Superior Schools," and "Manual Training and Domestic Science."

There were, however, frequent exceptions and alterations to this filing system. For example, during the years 1929-1931 Vancouver schools (i.e. those administered by the Vancouver School Board) were filed separately from other municipal schools; during the years 1934-1938 the Jericho Hill School for the Deaf and the Blind was accorded a separate file. Between 1928 and 1937 files pertaining to certain "private schools" were also kept separately. "Private schools" in this instance included some independent schools such as Crofton House, Vancouver, several religious colleges, and a number of Indian residential schools.

In addition, rural elementary schools were listed separately from other provincial elementary schools during the years 1928-1937. The "Rural Schools" reports were prepared by Miss Lottie Bowron, Rural Teachers' Welfare Officer (Women's). Her reports often contain detailed accounts of the conditions faced by teachers in small, isolated communities.

The Department of Education adopted a new filing system in 1938. From that year until 1957, when this series ends, all public school inspectors' reports, irrespective of school categories, were filed alphabetically under the names of individual teachers.

British Columbia. Dept. of Education

Rural district assessment forms and account books

  • GR-0453
  • Series
  • 1894-1897; 1906-1909; 1916-1919

The series consists of records created by the Dept. of Education and includes rural district assessment forms from 1906-1909. The series also contains various account books, including two from the Belgian Children's Relief Fund, 1916-1919, and one from the Education Office, 1894-1897.

British Columbia. Dept. of Education


  • GR-1116
  • Series
  • 1925-1974

This series contains reports regarding the B.C. school system, as follows: 1) Survey of the School System, by J.H. Putnam and M. Weir (1925); 2) Report of the Commission of Inquiry into Educational Finance, by Maxwell A. Cameron (1945); 3) "Reorganization of School Districts as proposed in Report of the Commission of Inquiry into Educational Finance", by Maxwell A. Cameron (1945); 4) "Brief presented to the Royal Commission on Education" by the B.C. Teachers' Federation (1959); 5) Report of the Royal Commission on Education (1960); 6) A Precis of the Report of the Royal Commission on Education in British Columbia (1960); 7) "The Coffe Report". The Report of the Commission on the Future of the Faculty of Education, University of British Columbia (1969); 8)An Interim Report to the Honourable The Minister of Education Mrs. Eileen E. Dailly from the Senior Secondary School Study Committee (1974); 9) Cameron report - miscellaneous; 10) 1960 Royal Commission - miscellaneous.

British Columbia. Dept. of Education

Register of teachers' certificates and examinations

  • GR-0148
  • Series
  • 1880-1888

The series consists of a register of teachers' certificates and examinations from 1880 to 1888. It states the type of certificate granted, course taken and marks obtained. There is an index on the inside front cover.

British Columbia. Dept. of Education

Register of schools, school trustees and teachers

  • GR-0462
  • Series
  • 1917-1946

This series consists of 33 volumes of register of Schools, school trustees and teachers. Records include registers showing the location of rural and assisted schools (1 vol.), names of trustees of rural and assisted school districts, 1917-1946 (29 vols.) and names of teachers in provincial public schools, 1918-1921 (3 vols.).

Volume 1 is a register of rural and assisted schools, ca 1918-1946. The schools are listed alphabetically and the location of each school is described. For example: "JACKSON BAY - a post office on Lewis Channel - Topaz Harbour route of Union Steamship Company from Vancouver;"

Volumes 2-30 are registers showing the names of school trustees of rural and assisted schools. The registers are arranged by year, beginning in 1917/1918 (vol. 2) through 1945/1946 (vol.30). Each register is organized alphabetically by name of school.

Volumes 31-33 are entitled "Teachers' Index Books." These registers are arranged alphabetically by name of teacher. The registers also show where each teacher was posted and the teacher's residence or postal address.

The Teachers' Indexes for 1918-1920 (vols. 31 and 32) list teachers in all categories of public schools City, Rural Municipality, Rural and Assisted. The Index volume for 1920-1921, however, only shows teachers who taught in Graded City Schools and in Rural Municipality Schools; teachers at small country schools (i.e. rural and assisted schools) are not listed in Vol. 33.

British Columbia. Dept. of Education

Records with regard to teacher training and certification

  • GR-1471
  • Series
  • 1884-1949

The series consists of records pertaining to teacher training and certification. It includes minute books of the Board of Examiners (1884-1949), teachers certificate registers (1892-1947), student registers at provincial Normal schools (1901-1938) high school examination results (1924-1927), and minutes of the Dept. of Education Appointments Board (1937-1945).

Prior to 1901, teachers in British Columbia were drawn either from outside the province or (after 1876) from graduates of provincial high schools. All teachers required teaching certificates, which were awarded by the Superintendent of Education. Teachers from outside the province were required to sit an examination set by the Provincial Board of Examiners. Candidates were awarded different grades or classes of certificates, depending on the results of their exam. High school graduates qualified for certificates in a similar manner, depending on their scores on terminal examinations. Standards of certification changed frequently over the years, as did the questions which appeared on the "Public School Teachers' Examinations." Basically, though, several classes of certificates were available: Academic and First Class (awarded to university graduates and/or to candidates scoring over 70% on the exam); Second class (awarded to candidates scoring over 50% on examinations); and Third class (awarded to candidates scoring 30% and above on a series of exam questions). First class certificates were permanent, 2nd class were valid for 3 years, while 3rd class certificates were generally good for one year, with the possibility of renewal. "Temporary certificates," valid until the annual examinations were held in July, were also issued under certain circumstances.

In 1901 the province's first Normal School for teacher training was opened in Vancouver. (A second school, in Victoria, was opened in 1915.) Thereafter, graduation from the Normal School replaced the "Public School Teachers' Examinations" for those seeking Academic, First, and Second class certificates. Only Third class certificates valid for a limited period of time were still awarded on the basis of candidates' high school examinations.

British Columbia. Dept. of Education

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