Like other parishes, Skegness had its Church School – founded in 1839 – some twenty-eight years after the National Society for the education of the poor in the Principles of the Church throughout England and Wales was established. The Earl of Scarbrough was patron and the Curate president. This small school of red brick stood on Roman Bank. Attendance, of course, was voluntary, and parents who decided to send their children had to contribute to its upkeep and maintenance according to their means. We give below extracts from the minutes and records of the Committee of the school, such as supply an insight into the early life of our Elementary School system:-
“At a meeting held 7th April, 1857, the Revd. the Curate, the Churchwardens, Mr. Whaler and Mr. Everington being present, an inspection of the school was made and satisfactory progress exhibited. The Committee would however call Mr. Harrison’s (the school-master) attention to the general discipline and omission of letters, etc., with writing—and to two rules which they desire to be particularly observed 1/ that no child shall be absent without leave first had, or afterwards bringing the excuse from his parents , and 2/ that every girl shall bring needlework for the afternoon employment.”
After an inspection made in Edward Steere’s time, he writes:—
There seemed to be a deficiency generally in the spelling; the Committee are therefore of the that it is desirable to introduce the regular of spelling books in the different classes, as well as a system of place-taking and emulation in their work throughout the school. The second class seemed very backward in their work. There was a decided improvement in the lower classes.”
The ‘village school’ is listed as being on County Bank (the former name for Roman Bank) in 1841. The building has since been demolished (sometime before 1932) but was situated opposite the Methodist church (now the Old Church second-hand shop) on Roman Bank.
In 1841, the schoolmaster was listed as Joseph Jepson age 40, who was born outside Lincolnshire. His wife, Martha, aged 30, son George, 15, and daughter, Mary aged 3 lived with him at the school.
On the 1851 census Thomas Addleshaw was listed as the schoolmaster.