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The Quantock School Prospectus

The 1981 Quantock School Prospectus

The 1981 edition of the Quantock School prospectus can be considered something of a classic collector's item; written in a language far better suited to 1881 than 1981, this 48-page A5-sized illustrated brochure portrays an image of a school that few if any of us will remember at all, and a compulsive overuse of the quotation mark to describe anything and everything that doesn't fit into the rather twee narrative - from 'the silicone chip' (sic) and 'homesickness' through to 'scruffy' and 'coke'. The food, like in the 1965 edition, is described as 'varied and appetising', but tellingly the complete ban on 'tuck' being provided by parents had been dropped.

The commentary has the unmistakable hallmark of Gerald 'Gerry' Warriner, the deputy head who after his unfortunate stroke was to become something of a figure of mirth, defined by an indescribable eccentricity and a rather ridiculous collection of morning stories and a wacky collection of "monkey and morality" posters - I will always remember in particular the tale about the poor soul who fell out of the back of a truck and got run over by a tank...

The 1981 Prospectus begins with the preamble (pp. 3-4) which outlines the basic principles of the school; it included a brief list of factors which parents had told the school resulted in their decisions to send their sons to Quantock.

The next section of the prospectus discusses the school's aims and policies (pp. 5-10), placing particular emphasis on a conservative attiture to teaching - having a go at the poor state of comprehensive education in the process (nothing appears to have changed there) - and the 'right' kind of discipline, which highlights the unique atmosphere at the school that combined freedom and discipline. It also goes on to discuss the advantages of boarding, as well as the importance of both personal development and teacher-pupil relationships. This was indeed one of the greatest advantages of the school - both class numbers and the teacher:pupil ratio was considerably lower than in the state sector. The core prospectus (pp. xx-xx) covers the essentials of educational life and development, expanding on many of the points covered in the aims and policies.

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