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The Importance of Public Education in Scotland

The importance of public education in Scotland in late 18th and early 19th centuries can be seen as a model for its southern neighbors. During this period, reputation of Scottish education system rose not only in Scotland itself, but also in its neighbors, England, Europe and North American continent.

The national structure of elementary education in Scotland was used as a model by Adam Smith and later by his compatriot Patrick Colquhoun, who himself clearly drew on work of eminent educator Andrew Ohn and Andrew Bell (1753-1832). .

Smith emphasizes:“In Scotland, establishment of parochial schools of this type taught all common people to read, and a significant number of them learned to write and keep accounts.” contrast.

Smith commends efforts of philanthropic schools in England, such as those supported and led by Cole Cookhorn and Bell in late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. Although they have had a positive impact,the author believes that ultimate goal should be creation of a national system of general education.

The Importance of Public Education in Scotland

NotesSmith in The Wealth of Nations (1776): "In England establishment of charitable schools, though less common, had same effect." Similarly, leading British educational reformer, Joseph Lancaster (1778-1838) stated: "Scotland ranks first among nations in religion, education, merit and virtue, and is an example for all mankind."

The statehood and authority of Kirk people, supported by parliamentary alliance with England in 1707, profoundly influenced education in eighteenth century Scotland. Both contemporaries and historians were glad to see this vision.

The development of Scottish mass education system provided Church with national support and left a great legacy. The Scottish intellectual Patrick Colquhoun drew on arguments of leading thinkers of Scottish Enlightenment to make structure of local parochial school key backbone of national education system.

Colghorn's understanding of 18th century Scottish model of economic growth and social change has been well understood. The author argues that ubiquitous availability of a good general contributed to this model. The problems associated with industrialization offer appropriate solutions. Patrick Colquhoun commends Scottish institutions and ideas for their dissemination and application in England and abroad.

The original and most influential discussion of education by leading theorists of Scottish Enlightenment is contained in Adam Smith's The Wealth of Nations. Scholars increasingly paid attention to education of all sections of society, especially the poor, which occupies an important place in Smith's thought.

The Importance of Public Education in Scotland

However, Smith's positive and humane vision of liberating and empowering benefits of public education actually arose from his concern for potentially devastating welfare of workers due to division of labor that characterizes modern age of commercial civilization and progress.

Remarkably, in The Wealth of Nations, Adam Smithemphasized role of government in providing mass education for working poor. According to Smith, state must take active measures to compensate for negative impact of economic development and specialization on ordinary workers.

We must acknowledge that public education is indeed at heart of Adam Smith's conception of political economy and is a central issue in Scottish Enlightenment thought. Interestingly, however, Smith did not advocate universal education for economic reasons. In fact, most of Smith's reflections on important role of education in a commercial society are social and political, not economic.

Smith's discussion of education appears principally in The Wealth of Nations, Book V On Revenues of Sovereignty or Union, Part III "Public Works and Taxes of Public Institutions". He divided education into two distinct branches, first focused on youth and second focused on "educating people of all ages".

Answering first question, Smith focused on schooling from elementary school to university. The second category concerned primarily role of religion. Smith's main question was this:Should public be interested not in politics, but in whether it is possible to demand universal education for people?"

The Importance of Public Education in Scotland

The author argues that in an advanced commercial society characterized by manufacturing, such as England in eighteenth century, repetitive processes of manual labor would be very detrimental to society as a whole. Smith explained: "In process of division of labor, employment of majority of people who live by work, that is, broad masses of people, is limited to a few very simple operations."< /strong>

Smith then complained: "The way they survive in this or that industry seems to have been achieved at expense of their intellectual, social, and military merit." There are serious concerns about moral implications. which appear to threaten ability of ordinary workers to carry out their duties in public sphere.

For Adam Smith, therefore, this corruption was result of "progress" embodied in influential conception of history by Scottish Enlightenment philosophers such as Lord Cummes and Adam Ferguson, who were concerned about progress of modern commercial production and division of labor.

Smith was well aware of duty and duty of authorities to counteract public harm by providing public education, and Smith cautioned: “In every progressive civilized society, working poor, that is, people in general, are necessarily bound to this condition, unless government makes an effort to stop him.

Smith even advocated compulsory basic education so that children could read and count. The author believes: "For a small fee, public can improve and even impose most important parts of education on every citizen."

The Importance of Public Education in Scotland

Scottish education and ideas of Scottish Enlightenment shaped life and thought of Patrick Colkhorn, but like other Scots of that era, Colkhorn was drawn to center of British economic and political power.

Since American Revolution, Colquhorn made numerous trips to British capital, lobbying for commercial and industrial interests in Scotland and north of England, and was instrumental in setting up House of Commons Standing Committee on Trade, eventually settling permanently in London 1789.

Kirquhorn moved from Glasgow (the second largest city of Empire in nineteenth century) to capital of Empire, London, where he played an important role as a Scottish thinker of Enlightenment in British Empire and throughout European continent.

In 1792, Metropolitan Government appointed Cole Cuhoorn as Provisional Judge of East End, where he served as Magistrate of East End Commercial Centre.

In imperial metropolises, new urban working class created huge problems in terms of crime, industrial relations and social security, so Kirkuhorn's interest in solving problem of poverty in historical development of evolution of practice of market capitalism made a significant contribution.

Kirkuhorn's focus on education and education as a way of dealing with social dangers of industrialization and urbanization reflects his Scottish origins and his use of Scottish political economy.

Patrick Colquhoun's approach to social and economic reform and better governance draws heavily on experience of Glasgow and traditional Scottish knowledge. As his political economist Adam Smith has shown, Scottish writers of the Enlightenment did not adhere to intellectual knowledge or disciplinary boundaries.

The Importance of Public Education in Scotland

Kirkuhorn's attitude towards education and his public school advocacy demonstrates how he gained attention of others as an Enlightenment scholar by putting forward a series of proposals based on political economy and empirical statistical analysis to reform criminal justice and fight poverty.

Influence of author's important ideas: All of Corkhorn's important lines of thought are interconnected and represent a collective response to social problems of time. commentators such as Adam Smith.

Kirkuhorn combined these concerns and interests, seeing education as a key means of easing social tensions and improving lives of poor.

Colquhorne became active in education shortly after moving to London from Scotland, and demonstrated a strong acumen in accounting and administration in his Treatise on Metropolitan Police in 1796. The importance of education for poor is highlighted in book, which details various crimes that threaten public and private property and suggests means to prevent them.

In his Metropolitan Police article, Colkhorn argues that a key cause of crime is "the lack of attention paid to education." He points out that situation is particularly dire in London due to lack of basic education for poor.

Based on views of Adam Smith, Andrew Bell, and Joseph Lancaster on role of education in promoting progress of nations, Colghorn wanted to "create a trend on part of legislature to achieve Great Purpose of educating children of nation."

Colghorn's proposals for development of a national education system in UK called for a partnership between private and public efforts. Colkhorn's educational agenda of building partnerships between individuals and governments reflects his experience in advocating for institutional reform, which has attracted attention of many scholars.

The Importance of Public Education in Scotland

Colghorn played a leading role in creation of Thames Police, along with Justice of Peace John Harriot and utilitarian philosopher Jeremy.

The police force was created in 1798 with support of West Indian merchants, and in 1800 received state support from Parliament. The Thames Police can be interpreted as epitome of historical evolution of criminal justice and social policy.

However, this is also linked to Colghorn's early experience as a community leader, as Glasgow was first city in UK to have a police force in 1779.

An Act of Parliament eventually empowered Glasgow police force in 1800, and Colghorn's experience as head of Scottish local government was a major influence in his efforts to reform police force in London and form a model for public education.

The ultimate goal of Colechorn's public policy was to create a national education system in England, with success in Scotland at end of eighteenth century (largely under Kirk's mandate and with support of country's government). Individual efforts and leadership also play an important role. important role.

The Westminster Free School Model published by Colghorn explicitly proposes to encourage people in UK and Ireland to provide financial support to increase access to poor. According to Colkhorn, "it is difficult to imagine a model in which a greater good can be achieved by state or by community as a whole, and it covers almost all objects important for political economy."

Although scholars who have discussed Colkhorn's police powers generally consider Colkhorn a conservative theorist of reprisals, he was also a staunch critic of eighteenth century British Blood Code and a critic of British. harshness of judiciary echoes Tudor critique of thieves' justice in Sir Thomas More's Utopia.

Kirkuhorn complained: “It is both ancient and modern that lower classes should be poorly educated, utterly inconsiderate of ordinances of state that would help to improve their morals, and then punished with unprecedented measures. It is wrong to know that their crimes are due to bad habits and first thing to do to fix this flawed criminal justice system is education."

The relationship between urbanization and industrialization is most pronounced in London, as reflected in Cole Kuehoorn's discussions of British poverty, crime and social policy, which converge on final solution to problem of education.

The rapid decline of morals in lower strata of society is evident to every careful observer, and Colkhorn warned in 1806: "With growth of population, rising generation. What will happen if you do not get a good education?" /p>

Education for poor should be aimed at giving them moral ability to resist vices and temptations that will make themoshimi and useful members of society.


Adam Smith, The Wealth of Nations (1776)

Patrick Colkhorn, A Treatise on Metropolitan Police (1796)

Thomas More's Utopia (1516)

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