Timeline 1922
JRGS Alumni Society

The Croydon Archives:
Timeline 19

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1922 saw more staff, more boys, and the first examination results. It's interesting to note that the Academic year begins in April - not in September as it does now. It also shows the first Scholarship success. And, of course, the registers were checked.

Apr 1922

In 1922 Malcolm Muggeridge was in School for a month - from March 13 to April 13. In the Log, he is shown as being a "Student Teacher." In reality, this "Student" status, in the official definitions of the time, is unlikely to be the case for two reasons.

Firstly, reference to the Education Committee Minutes at the time (CBC/2/1/5) showed that Student Teachers were exactly that - they were school students who then stayed on as "teachers". Muggeridge didn't fit into this category - by that time he had already been a student at Cambridge (Selwyn College) since 1920, and so wasn't a pupil.

Secondly, all Student Teachers appointments had to be approved by the full Education Committee - and they were always employed until "July" (and were awarded a salary of about 30). There is no mention of Muggeridge in any of the Minutes of late 1921 or 1922.


So, what was Muggeridge's true status - and how did he come to be at Ruskin? His own Autobiography Chronicles of Wasted Time - The Green Stick gives a clue at the very end of the chapter entitled a Socialist Upbringing. Here Muggeridge records: "I had no particular idea what I should do after Cambridge, except that I was committed to teach in one capacity or another. In addition to my poor pass degree, I had taken a diploma in Education; yet another course of instruction of which I remember nothing."

To get the Diploma, he must have done some work in schools - however little. So why Ruskin? There is no record - but putting two and two together (and maybe making five):
A. He lived within walking distance of Tamworth Road;
B. His father (H. T. Muggeridge) was both a Councillor and on the Education Committee; and
C. His father was also a Governor of John Ruskin School.

So it would seem that everyone was happy - the "lad" got a holiday job that contributed good experience towards the Diploma he was taking (or about to take, since he didn't graduate until 1924), and the school got an extremely intellectual young teacher! The teaching periods all seem to line up with Cambridge vacations. So it would seem that he was a "Student," in the University sense of the word, and a "Teacher," in the Supply Teacher sense of the word.

Is it the case, perhaps, that Mr. Field got carried away - being so proud to have a "Cambridge Man" in their midst that he inadvertently uses the word "Student" out of official context? We can only speculate.

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