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QUARTERLY RECORD OF THE PROGRESS OF RE

FORMATORY AND RAGGED SCHOOLS, AND OF THE IMPROVEMENT OF PRISON DISCIPLINE.

During the past quarter, lectures have been delivered, on every imaginable topic, by some of the most distinguished men of these kingdoms: yet admirable, and well designed, as most of their discourses were, we believe that not one lecture of the entire number was more important or more useful than that delivered last month in Bristol by the Rev. Sydney Turner, and of which the following abstract is furnished by one of the local journals: THE REFORMATION OF JUVENILE OFFENDERS.

A lecture was delivered on the above subject at the Philosophical Institution, Park-street, on Wednesday afternoon, by the Rev. Sydney Turner, M.A., chaplain of the Reformatory School of the Philanthropic Society at Redhill

, near Reigate, Surrey, to a numerous and most influential audience.

The chair was occupied by the Right Worshipful the Mayor, who, in introducing the lecturer, referred to the importance of the subject of the address they were about to listen to, and the increasing necessity of some reformatory influence to counteract the swelling tide of juvenile deilnquency, especially in great cities. He would instance Liverpool-in 1854, 1,035 boys and girls were committed for various offences, 428 of whom were under 12; the value of the property de. tected to have been stolen amounted to £3,225; the total value, including that undetected, was estimated at £8,539, of which only £1,367 was recovered; if to this they added the expenses of their commitment, it would furnish a most powerful argument why refor. matory schools should meet with support, entirely exclusive of any moral grounds.

The Lecturer believed it was the fashion for all lecturers to plead some excuse, or to make some apology, requesting the indulgence of their audience. He should have to do so too, though not because it was the fashion-first, because he was no professed speaker, having devoted his attention more to working than to talking ; and another favour he would beg of them was, that they would excuse his appear. ing somewhat egotistical, because, when speaking of a work in which he had been so actively engaged, it was unavoidable that he should speak, to some extent, of himself. And if he should say anything involuntarily that might be opposed to their prejudices or opinions, he would crave their pardon, since he should be endeavouring to place his own experience on the subject before their notice. There were three or four important questions suggested themselves at the first starting, demanding answers :

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1. Did they want such schools at all; were they necessary? Some 10 or 12 years ago these were formidable questions. They had to go far and wide into society, and appeal much to experience to furnish any satisfactory answer. But this stage had beer passed. Most people now allowed the advantges of such institutions : that schools for curing diseased minds were as great a necessity as hospitals for the cure of diseased bodies; that, by the means of reforma. tory schools, that portion of English society which has become per. verted, corrupted, and rotten, might be made sound and wholesome, and useful. Anyone who needed to be assured of the extent of juvenile depravity had only to go to our prisons. He was not so well acquainted with Bristol, as London, Manchester, and Leeds ; but at any moment they could find in England 1,000 or 1,500 boys and girls incarcerated for crime. The children of the streets, too, were continually augmenting in numbers. It had lately been made the subject of a joke by Punch. Reformatory agencies were the most effectual and least expensive methods of ameliorating this increasing evil.

II. Why were Reformatory schools become so indispensible? The answer to the question was not so clear, nor so satisfactory, There was something revolting to their feeling in the very word Reform. When applied to a child of ten years old, why it was not yet formed! What a story did it tell of neglected duty, forgotten responsibility, and criminal negligence. There should be no need of reformation for children. The young woman who had fallen from virtue, or the young man who had erred from the path of rectitude, might need reformation, but for the child to require to be re-made was an outrage on common sense and religion. But it must be made the subject of earnest study and practical action. If it were asked if he ever expected that society will be wholly reformed, he replied, no. The vicious would no more cease from the land than the poor. But it was a very different thing to commit juvenile offenders by thousands and by hundreds, by companies or squadrons, and by units or tens. They might say, philosophically, there ought not to be delinquents, but there are, and they must deal with things as they

They might not be able to stop the tide, but they might check it and lessen its force. If the cause were traced out, they might arrest the evil for the present, and diminish it for the future. They needed that the relation of class to class should be more regarded, that they should look less entirely to themselves, and more to the classes designated as the poorer. If they took more pains to implant within these higher feelings, they would secure from them nobler and more honourable actions. He believed that if there were fewer model prisons there would be more success. If parish authorities could be made to do their duty, and to do it from a higher sense of their responsibility, as being guardians of these classes, to have less anxiety to save half-a-crown, and more anxiety to save a soul from ruin, crime would be more scarce. But the one great cause was the general inadequacy of the means of education. For what use was it to build hospitals for the cure of a disease, when the cause of the sease was left untouched, or to fill the pit to empty it again.

were.

any use?

A letter in the Spectator, in answer to a statement that seven were reprieved out of ten juvenile delinquents, urged that the Archbishop of Canterbury, Sir G. Grey, Sir G. Pakington, and others, were responsible for those seven, since the fact of their being capable of reform ation, proved that they need not have required it. He did not think the parties referred to, wanted in willingness or earnestness. The responsibility did not rest with them, it was diffused generally. If these gentlemen were to offer any assembly a law for general education, they would have almost as many opponents as the number they addressed. It would be asked, What sort of religious instructiou was intended to be imparted ? Ilow did it provide for balancing the claims of this and that sect? He was afraid they each would rather let a hoy rot in social crime, before they would allow bim to be taught a different system of religion to their own. Nothing effectual could be done while this feeling lasted, though thousands were perishing for lack of help. He would that the same feeling, which was manifested by a Jewish mother, was dormant in all. She wished her boy to come to his school; and on his reminding her that as he would hear the Word of God frequently read, &c., there would be every chance of his becoming a Christian, she answered, “Sir, I would rather my boy should become a good Christian, than remain a bad Jew,” The lecturer then referred to the educational surveillance adopted in America as a good example for our imitation. Reformation was good, but prevention was better.

III. If they had Reformatory Schools, would they be of This was a practical question, and was continually pressed He did not say every person could be reformed, but he was of opinion that most people could be ; it was in the recognition of this principle that the Gospel of Christ was grounded. Yet theoretical arguments might fail to convert the philosopher, the statesman, or the politician, who had the making of laws, they wanted arguments more practical. A magistrate of his acquaintance once said of Redhill, “ It is a nice place, and they are good sort of people who work there, for I know them; but if á boy is a prig he will be one.” This gentleman seemed to consider that as some men are born poets, sculptors, &c., so some were bord “ prigs ;” that a Turpin was as much a natural phenomenon as a Newton. He could only meet that objection by giving practical results. He would first mention the school at Kingswood, and his statements could be substantiated by Miss Carpenter. Out of twelve of the pupils who had emigrated or gone to sea, only one had failed to keep his good character ; and but one out of thirteen placed out in England. What argument could be more convincing than that? The favourable chances were twelve to one, to prove that the reformatory method was not only right but profitable. At Hardwick, and other institutions, the results were as favourable. But he knew most of Redhill, and the School of Mettray in France, after which Redhill was modelled. When he thought of Mettray he was almost discouraged that so little had been done in England. There, out of 1,320 inmates during the past sixteen years, only 10 per cent. were relapsed. And these statistics could be depended upon, for the most careful oversight was kept upon all who had left

Mettray. Though not so much, they had done something at Redhill, especially corsidering their many difficulties and obstructions. It was seven years ago, in 1849, that it was determined to remove the Philanthropic institution from London to the country, where it was planted on a farm. Fighteen boys were taken there, in a year these increased to 100. More houses were built. There were now six different departments, and 247 boys. When be considered that they transferred a London school to the country, to agricultural pursuits, and where they were without walls or warders, he only wondered they succeeded at all. Another mistake was to begin without adequate teachers. M. de Metz, of Mettray, spent three months in training the teachers. We also neglected another precaution which he took; we had as many again scholars to commence with as he had; they should have formed a nucleus. They had received 847 scholars and placed out, or sent abroad, 636. Of course some of these were deserters Many only came for a week or two to see what the place was like, for those he would allow eighty. Of the remainder, 377 had emigrated to the colonies, and 163 were placed out in England. What had been the results, for their real influence was determined by the effects. In 1854, of thirty-one who emigrated, only two turned out ill; those who remained were a very great assistance, especially in America. Of the nineteen placed out in England, thirteen were successful. In 1851, forty-seven emigrated, thirty-nine did well: thirteen were placed out, and ten did well. In 1852, fifty-three did well out of sixty-one, and eighteen out of twenty-five. In 1853, seventy-five out of eighty-six, and thirty-one out of thirty-six. In 1854, seventy-six out of eighty-six, and thirteen out of twenty. Total emigrated during five years, 308 ; of whom thirty-nine turned out ill, and 296 well ; placed out in England, 119; forty-six were unsuccessful, and seventy-three turned out well. This showed a result of four-fifths of successes, and one-fifth failures, or twenty per cent. Allowing that a few whom he had not heard of had turned out ill, it was not many; for somehow there were plenty to inform bim of any relapses. Allowing, say ten per cent., and that was a handsome allowance, it would still remain a fact that seventy out of every hundred did well, or seven in ten. Other difficulties were, the want of teachers, his own inexperience, the ages of the boys, some as old as eighteen years ; while in France a law provided that they should not be older than seven, Cousidering all this, they need not be ashamed, as Englishmen, of what had been done at Redhill. The lecturer then proved that the school was no nuisance to the neighbourhood; and showed from a report for the last week, which had been forwarded to him, that out of 246 boys, only thirty-one were guilty of the slightest fault; those included dirty hands, want of punctuality, &c. The next point he proved was, that it offered no premium to crime. Experience had proved that very few volun. teered to the school. It was no more an inducement to crime, than the workhouse was an inducement to idleness. The reformatory schools had been found rather a stimulus to parental responsibilities, by the exertion of which juvenile offenders would be almost eliminated from society. From Capt. Williams, to whose zealous aid and inter

ference with Government the reformatory movement was greatly indebted, he had received, per letter, the following statement, to show that the number of juvenile offenders was on the decrease:- In 1848, 13,798 boys and girls were committed ; in 1849, 12,953 ; in 1850, 11,276 ; in 1851, 12,392; in 1852, 11,821; in 1853, 11,453 ; and in 1854, the compilation of which was not complete, showed a still further diminution. Now, though he was ready to admit that this favourable position was partly due to the operations of our pauper district-schools, of which there were six in London, as well as other agencies, he would still claim a large amount of the result as due to reformatory movements. This diminution was at the rate of 7 per cent., or, allowing for our increase of population. Il per cent. In referring to Kingswood Reformatory School, Mr. Turner passed a most warm eulogium on Miss Mary Carpenter, to whose personal exertions and warm heart the movement owed so very much. After entering very fully into many eminent points connected with the reformation of juvenile offenders, the eloquent lecturer concluded by urging his audience to personal exertion in so important a matter, especially as they had a school so near as that of Kingswood.

Mr. Commissioner Hill, in moving a vote of thanks to the lecturer, dwelt for some time on the various features of the reformatory movement, and particularly those of the school at Mettray, whose super. intendent, M. de Metz, was his personal friend.

This was seconded by R. P. Ring, Esq., who remarked that, in his capacity of magistrate, he had to deal largely with juvenile offenders, some of whom were brought up, time after time, within a few days of their dismissal from gaol. Carried unanimously.

Sir E. Wilmot, in a few choice words, expressed the thanks of the meeting tothe chairman, after whose brief reply the meeting separated.

Whilst Mr. Turner las been thus lecturing in Bristol, Lord Leigh has been printing liis notes of his visit to Mettray last autumn, and has published them under the title --The Reformatory at Mettray. A Letter from a Visitor to that Insti. tution, Addressed to a Member of the Committee of the Warwickshire Reformatory. This Letter gives, concisely and clearly, the writer's impressions of the colony, and he has introduced two wood-cuts, shewing the ele ations of the washing and sleeping plac.s. The following passages appear to us worthy of notice, and they place some new facts before those interested in the Reformatory Movement, particularly as the question of punishment is now engaging the attention of our friends. Lord Leigh's observations on the adaptability of the “honour" prizes of Mettray to English schools are most important. If we borrow the idea of the ORDER OF valor from France and its Legion of Honour, why should we not borrow the honor preiniums from Mettray. Lord Leigh writes:

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