Rochelle School  » Education for All

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Education for All

The Elementary Education Act passed in 1870 made it compulsory for all children between the ages of five and twelve years old to be given basic, publicly provided education. Prior to the Act, education had been voluntary and provided on a charitable basis or privately.

The Board Schools were to be absolutely free for the poor. 
Consequently, boards were set up across the country to provide and run the new schools. In London, it was initially calculated that 100,000 new school places were needed, yet this was a massive underestimate, and by the end of the century half a million school places had been created.

The architect who oversaw this huge building enterprise was E.R. Robson, a student of celebrated architect George Gilbert Scott and undoubtedly influenced by John Ruskin in his passion for high quality craftsmanship in the school buildings.

The two former London Board schoolhouses at the heart of todays Rochelle campus are fine examples of Robson’s early work and stand testament to his passion for artisan craftsmanship.