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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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Phoebe Street School plans

Phoebe Street School Plans, Ground Floor

c. 1905
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Phoebe Street School Plans

Phoebe Street School Plans, Basement Floor

c. 1905
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W.F. School Bag

Canvas School Satchel

1900-1910
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Parkdale Public school, 1905 Boys Basketball Team

Parkdale Public School, Boys Basketball Team

1905
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Members of the Board of Education for the City of Toronto, 1905

Members of the Board of Education for the City of Toronto

1905
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Students from Lord Dufferin Public School

Lord Dufferin Public School

1905
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Manual Training Class

Manual Training Class at Lord Dufferin Public School

1905
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Class from Riverdale Collegiate Institute

Riverdale Collegiate Institute, 4th Form

1905
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Queen Alexandra  School

Queen Alexandra School, Broadview Avenue

c. 1910
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Pupils of Queen Alexandra School

Pupils of Queen Alexandra School

c. 1905
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Award for Good Conduct

8 Year Award for Good Conduct, Punctuality, Regularity and Diligence

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Hillcrest School

Domestic Arts Building, Hillcrest School

c. 1910
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Rose Avenue School Soccer Champs

Rose Avenue School Soccer Champs

1905
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Students On Steps of Balmy Beach School

Students On Steps of Balmy Beach School

c. 1905
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Students on Steps Outside Balmy Beach School

Students on Steps Outside Balmy Beach School

c. 1905
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City Hall, Empire Day

Empire Day Celebrations at City Hall

c. 1905
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