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The Radical Reform Collection

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The foundations of the present-day Canadian public education system were laid in the 19th century when Canada was still a British colony. The goal of those who were set the task of reforming the education system was to better meet the needs of British colonial interests and the interests of a colony whose cities were growing. When you examine the artifacts in this collection, you always have to ask the question "whose needs are being met as public education evolved?"

There are a few key questions to keep in mind, when considering the social issues that the public education system attempts to address, be it the lack of care for underprivileged children, corporal punishment, special education or treatment of those outside of the white Anglo-Saxon Protestant majority.
These key questions include:
 - To what extent does this issue continue? And how has it changed to the present day?
 - From whose perspective were changes in the nature of public education advantageous to the larger portion of society?
 - To what extent could changes be described as ‘radical reform’ and to what extent were the changes reactions to a changing social and political climate?

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Hester How in Her Classroom

Hester How in Her Classroom

c. 1890
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St. Clair School

St. Clair Avenue School

c. 1900
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Children on Swing

Children Playing on Glider Swing

c. 1910
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Rotary Neostyle

Ad for a Rotary Neostyle Duplicating Machine

c. 1890
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McCaul Street School

McCaul Street School

c. 1910
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Fire Extinguisher Ad

Advertisement for Fire Extinguishers

c. 1890
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Education Museum

Toronto Normal and Model School - Egyptian Artists' room

c. 1890
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Discipline Book from Givens School

Discipline Book from Givens School

April 11 1890 to May 15, 1918
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Joseph Workman

Portrait bust of Joseph Workman

1890
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Field Trip

Victoria Street School Students on a Field Trip

1890
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Central Technical School - First Building

Central Technical School - First Building

1891
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Physical Culture

Physical Culture: First Book of Exercises in Drill, Calisthenics, and Gymnastics

1891
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Kindergarten Class

Louisa Street School, Kindergarten Class

1891
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Church Street Public School

Church Street School Toronto

1891
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Church Street Public School

Illustration of Church Street Public School

1891
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Church Street School

Lithograph of Church Street School

1891
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