The First Comprehensive Schools of Irkutsk: Historical and Pedagogical Aspects of Development

Author(s)

Marina V. Kuznetsova, Candidate of Sciences (History), Associate Professor, ORCID https://orcid.org/0000-0001-6672-4309, Irkutsk State University

1 K. Marks St, Irkutsk, Russia, 664003, tel.: +7 (3952) 426417, e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Abstract. Introduction. The paper addresses the issues of the establishment and development of the first general educational institutions in Irkutsk. These are the City (“Gradskaya” in old Russian) School and the Main National School that functioned in the late XVIII – early XIX centuries. The topic of the education development in Irkutsk in this period is of interest to the history of pedagogy, as it demonstrates the forms and methods of teaching and learning in Russia in their historical aspect, shows the uniqueness of school work, the position of the school, teacher, and student in a Siberian city-the provincial center of the country. Based on the available archival materials and those made available for the scientific use, the quantitative and social structure of students in different periods of the development of the city first comprehensive schools, the quantitative and social structure of teachers are presented, a comparative analysis of the development of general education in large cities of Siberia is carried out, and a conclusion is made about the leading position of Irkutsk. The study aims to cast light on the activities of the first general education schools in Irkutsk as the center of the vast East Siberian region in close connection with the development of public education in Siberia.

Materials and methods. The study relies on the comparative analysis of historical sources and reconstruction of the historical period.

The results of the study. The activity of the first Irkutsk educational institutions in the late XVIII – early XIX centuries is presented. The following trends are to be emphasized: the improvement in the quality of student knowledge, quantitative growth in the number of students, general enhancement of the education and literacy in Irkutsk residents. The results of the schools’ activities are presented. The first educational institutions of the city prepared, mainly, employees, officials, teachers, and gave general basic knowledge. The paper indicates the social structure of students. The teaching staff, who had a pedagogical education, is characterized. It is worth noting that the personal approach is applied to describe the process of functioning of the first general educational institutions in Irkutsk, which allows us to outline the trends in the study on the emergence of the Siberian intelligentsia. In terms of the number of students in the three main public schools opened in Siberia, Irkutsk had the highest. Furthermore, despite the quantitative fluctuation in students in general, their number grew. The paper concludes that the development of public education in Irkutsk in the late XVIII – early XIX centuries ranked first in Siberia. Therefore, it is no mere chance that Irkutsk school was the first in Siberia in 1805 to be transformed into a gymnasium, playing a significant role in training literate people.

Keywords: City (“Gradskaya” in old Russian) school, the Main National School, the composition of students and teachers, education, the quality of student knowledge, the training program, student performance.

For citation: Kuznetsova M. V. The First Comprehensive Schools of Irkutsk: Historical and Pedagogical Aspects of Development. Pedagogicheskiy IMIDZH = Pedagogical IMAGE. 2021; 15(2): 169-182. DOI: 10.32343/2409-5052-2021-15-2-169-182

UDС: 373+930

DOI: 10.32343/2409-5052-2021-15-2-169-182

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