The National Union of Elementary Teachers (NUET) was established at a meeting at King's College London on 25 June 1870 to represent all school teachers in England and Wales. However, members came to consider that 'elementary teachers' was a demeaning term and after toying with the idea of changing the name to the National Union of English Teachers the name National Union of Teachers (NUT) was finally adopted at Annual Conference in April 1889. The Union remains the largest body representing school teachers in England and Wales.
The Union established offices at 7 Adam Street, Adelphi, London WC on the appointment of the first full-time Secretary in 1873. In 1889 it moved its headquarters to Bolton House, 67/71 Russell Square, London WC. In 1915, headquarters were moved to Hamilton House, Mabledon Place, London WC1, where they have remained ever since.
Executive Committee minutes, 1870-1976 [1890-1964 on microfilm]; Annual Conference minutes and reports, 1870-1936, 1947-78; Education Committee minutes, 1886-89, 1891-1977 [1894-1960 on microfilm]; Finance and General Purposes Committee minutes, 1876-1969; International Relations Committee minutes, 1931-1974; Ladies' Committee minutes, 1900-39; Law and Tenure Committee minutes, 1873-1978 [1890-1953 on microfilm]; Membership and Organisation Committee minutes, 1891-1963; Salaries and Superannuation Committee minutes, 1913-43, 1948-74; Sustentation Committees minutes, 1916-49; Welsh Committee minutes, 1906-61; Panel minutes, 1950-64; minutes of many other committees, special committees and sub-committees.
Education Committee case files, 1925-70. These records provide a fascinating insight into the development of the education system in Britain during the last century. They show changes in the teaching profession and chart a growing concern with all aspects of child welfare. The material is particularly strong on the role of teachers during the Second World War, including the evacuation of children. There is also a wealth of material on post war Educational Reconstruction and the 1944 Education Act. Many other aspects of educational policy and child welfare are touched upon as the NUT was often invited to submit evidence on the major reports and issues of the day, or asked to investigate matters on behalf of its members. The medical inspection of school children, the effects of the cinema on young people and the administration of juvenile employment are just a few of the subjects which are included.
Financial records, 1871-1941; letter books, 1896-1940; Law and Tenure Committee case files, 1952-73; files on West Ham Strike, 1907, and Herefordshire Strike, 1913; Salaries and Superannuation Committee papers; Papers of Frank J. Maxwell, 1969-74.
Annual Reports, 1872-79, 1890-1905, 1950-89 [all with gaps]; Education Code, 1893-1908; Circular books, 1875-1972; Education Department circular books, 1950-83; college sponsorship circular books, 1951-71; Youth Review, 1964-70, 1972; miscellaneous publications.
This collection has been weeded for duplicates.
The papers have been arranged according to their subject. This generally reflects the organisation of the Union, but it has not been possible in all circumstances to arrange the papers according to the department or committee which created them.
There are no restrictions on access to these papers.
The Centre also holds the archives of several other teachers' organisations, including the National Association of Schoolmasters (MSS.38), the Association of Assistant Mistresses (MSS.59), the Assistant Masters' and Mistresses' Association (MSS.299), the Association of Head Mistresses (MSS.188), the Headmasters' Association (MSS.58), the Secondary Heads' Association (MSS.218), the Teachers' Guild/Education Guild (MSS.413 and MSS.59/TG), the National Association of Teachers of Home Economics and Technology and its predecessors (MSS.177), the Association of Teachers in Colleges and Departments of Education (MSS.176/CD) and the Association of Teachers in Technical Institutions (MSS.176/TI). There is also a range of other archives relating to education.
The Centre also holds the archives of the Council for Educational Advance (MSS.179/CEA). These were also deposited by the National Union of Teachers.
The papers of local branches of the NUT are held in many local record offices around the country. The archives of the National Union of Women Teachers are held by the Institute of Education at the University of London.