School's Influence on personal development in the context of George Orwell

Essay by bobwatsonUniversity, Master'sB, April 2006

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Since Greek and Roman times school has been an essential institution in the evolution of civilised society. Today all around the world, especially in our Western world, school has become an inevitable part, foremost in a person's development. Therefore, it should be helpful to look at the development of different types of school forms in Europe (with an emphasis on Britain) and the United States in the 20th century, assessing each respective contribution to a person's educational and personal development. Furthermore, with this as a background source and help, it will be attempted to compare Orwell's views with those previously established.

Following the chronological order in which a young person may encounter a school form, the analysis of Preperatory school will be attempted. Preparatory school, is a school that prepares students for entrance to a higher school. In Europe, where secondary education has been selective, preparatory schools have been those that catered to pupils wishing to enter the academic secondary schools.

In North America, where secondary education has been less selective and entry to it is less competitive, the term generally refers to private secondary schools that prepare students for universities. In England, for example, the preparatory (or prep) schools, which began in the 19th century, form an integral part of the private or independent school system. Boys or girls enter the preparatory schools at about the age of 8 and usually leave between the ages of 11 and 13, often to attend one of the private secondary institutions. In Germany this type of elementary private preparatory school (Vorschule) was abolished shortly after World War I.

The implications of the prep school system for one's personal development are obvious; those who have the chance to attend this school form (in Britain: wealth and money), have the better opportunity of going...