Conditions of service for secondary schoolmasters in England and Wales, 1891-1951, with special reference to the work of the Assistant Masters Association
This thesis examines to what extent and by what means the Assistant Masters Association (AMA) was able to influence provision in relation to conditions of service for the secondary schoolmaster in England and Wales in the 60-year period from the AMA's foundation in 1891. A thematic approach is adopted with chapters devoted to the specific issues of tenure, salaries, superannuation, registration and training. Within each chapter there is a necessary concentration on the earlier period of the AMA's history when the impetus to create acceptable conditions of service was at its most imperative. The thesis draws upon much previously unused material from the Assistant Masters Archive, lodged at the University of London Institute of Education Library. The study builds upon and extends the earlier research of Baron, Tropp and Gosden, and provides an alternative interpretation to the more recent work of Lawn, Ozga, Grace, and others, which presents the behaviour of organized teachers in terms of employeremployee conflict. The strike, confrontational stratagem and the coercion of its membership are seen as alien to the AMA's philosophy. The AMA's participation with Joint Four, and its interaction with other teacher unions, are fully explored. The significant contribution of the AMA to enhanced provision across the spectrum of teacher employment is shown to be primarily the result of the Association's persistent, professional dialogue with government - both central and local - via carefully researched data and targeted argument.