1872 First Truant Officer

  • W.C. Wilkinson, Toronto Public School Board Truant Officer

    272 Cases in Wilkinson’s First Year

    In 1871, the Act to Improve the Common and Grammar Schools of the Province of Ontario saw compulsory school attendance brought into legislation. W.C. Wilkinson was the first appointee in the newly created position of Truant Officer in 1872. In his first year of office, Wilkinson found 272 cases of “irregularity” with offenses ranging from forged notes to parental indifference and ignorance. The former was relatively easy to remedy; the latter, was a more difficult case for Wilkinson to tackle.

    Photographer unknown

    Black and white photograph


    Black and white head and shoulder portrait of man with short cropped hair, grey mustache in suit