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Eugenics and the ‘backward child’

New Zealand, 1877-1910

By the early twentieth century, eugenics, or the science of heredity as it was called, was gaining momentum throughout much of the industrialising world. New Zealand was no exception. Encapsulating a social movement, as well as its doctrines and practices, eugenics provided a convenient and ‘scientifically’ convincing argument that the source of social problems and the statistically demonstrated decline and degeneration of the national population lay in genetic weaknesses.… Continue Reading »

Adult Education

New Zealand, to 2012

In its broadest sense, adult education refers to the education of anyone beyond school-age. Historically, the sector has constantly evolved as elements of its provision have matured into autonomous sectors in their own right, leaving adult education to constantly re-invent itself on the boundaries of the educational mainstream in its mission of meeting adult learner needs.… Continue Reading »