London's Pulse: Medical Officer of Health reports 1848-1972

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Leyton 1904

[Report of the Medical Officer of Health for Leyton]

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Kirkdale Road Schools4344242621120
Davies Lane „3913463781115
Lea Bridge Ward.
Capworth Street Schools5785735711722
Church Road „3453403501036
Lea Bridge Road „mixed.212
Sybourn Street „mixed.188
St. Joseph's Roman Catholic School, Vicarage Road200

Total attending Schools:—

In 189916133
,, 190117674
,, 190218175
,, 190319184

Special notice is necessary on this occasion of the new regulations
at these Schools, which are the work of the Educational Committee of
the Leyton Urban District Council, which took over charge of the
Schools on September 30, 1903. I am glad to be able to observe
that they have entirely abolished the use by the scholars of slates
throughout the Schools. For slates, paper and pencils have been
substituted. The value of this regulation, from a health point of
view, cannot be overrated. I feel certain much infection was carried
about when slates were used, owing to the interchange of slates and
sponges, as it was impossible to be sure of the same pupil using the
same slate and sponge every day. Thus the slate used by a child in
the early stages of measles, diphtheria or scarlet fever, etc, might be
handled on the next occasion by a perfectly healthy child, and illness
and misery thus transferred from one home to another. Under the
new regulation the paper used is at once destroyed, and much risk of
infection obviated. I would like the Educational Committee to go
even a step further, and ordain that each pupil should have his or her
own box of pens, pencils, rubber, and so forth, thus preventing the
interchange of pencils or pens, the ends of which get chewed, perhaps,
by an infected pupil, to be handed on to another perfectly healthy one.
The giving of a box to each scholar would serve a twofold purpose,
viz., that of teaching the child the value of responsibility of other
people's property. The box should belong to one scholar right to the