School Strike Threat at Blantyre

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Blantyre, Lanarkshire, Scotland

Snippets of Yesteryear

The Sunday PostSunday 03 October 1926

School Strike Threat at Blantyre

Parents Demand Clothing for Children.

Hamilton, Saturday.

School Strike Threat at BlantyreA strike of school children, which has been threatened repeatedly, is expected to be put into operation in Blantyre parish on Monday.

During the past ten days a vigorous agitation has been on foot for the provision of boots and clothing by the County of Lanark Education Authority to destitute miners’ children, who’ are of school age.

The penalty for non-compliance with the request was the threatened school strike. The question was considered by the Lanarkshire Education Authority at a special meeting, when it was reported that the number of applications received was 4551, involving 11,039. The number of children examined to date was 6105, with the result that, in the opinion of the medical officers, 24 required boots and clothing, 72 boots only, and two clothing only.

After careful and lengthy review of the whole situation, the authority decided, by a majority, that the school medical officers, in co-operation with head teachers, class teachers, and attendance officers, should examine the children and report on their condition.

This decision has not been popularly received in Blantyre, where it is claimed that 80 per cent, of the parents who visited the agitators are in favour of the immediate withdrawal of their children from school.

Developments on Monday are anxiously awaited, for certain members of the Authority have laid down the definite dictum that a strike is an illegal and irregular action which may involve the parents in penalties at the Courts.

Elizabeth Weaver said, ” My mother, Jean Scott started at Auchinraith in 1930, and she would tell of the time when weans often went barefoot in all weathers; big families and miners’ wages didn’t make for a comfortable life. Impoverished parents could apply to the Parish to have shoes for school wear but of course the weans who wore these boots would be subjected to taunts in the playground: “Pairish bits! pairish bits!”



Blantyre, Lanarkshire, Scotland

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