Head Teacher Canvey Infants 1973

Georgina Magee - The happy headmistress.

Triumphant Mrs Georgina MaGee stands amid the foundations of the extra classroom she won.
Echo Newspaper Archive

Published in the Echo  3rd July 1973.

Education chiefs are rushing through plans for a new £250,000 school to ease Canvey’s classroom crisis. The news comes in a surprise statement by Essex education committee. It means the island will get three new schools instead of the two planned in the next few years.

The decision comes after 12 angry women teachers, led by campaigning headmistress Mrs Georgina MaGee, called for smaller classes on crowded Canvey. It also follows a campaign by the Evening Echo which spotlighted overcrowding and teacher shortages in Essex. The new primary school is part of a £1,000,000 cash boost for Canvey. Two new primary schools plus major extensions to two other island schools are already in the pipeline and should provide another 1,300 desks by 1975. The extra school will provide room for a further 280 children. After the announcement, Mr Jack Springett, Essex’s deputy education officer said:’ The £1,000,000 development programme has been scheduled for some time, but we are now planning an extra primary school as a precaution’. He said the stand by Mrs MaGee and her staff, who refused to accept any more children in their overcrowded school and the Echo campaign had resulted in the new school going on the drawing board. Education chiefs have also made Canvey a priority area and have promised to carry out a five year check on the island’s needs.

Mrs MaGee – head of Canvey County Infants School for 14 years – faced suspension when she refused to accept any more children at her already overcrowded school. Her staff – all women – threatened to walk out if she was suspended. Now they are overjoyed,

Apart from the mammoth school development programme for the island, they have won their won battle and have been promised a new demountable classroom within a few days. At Mrs MaGee’s school, an official of the National Union of Teachers paid tribute to the headmistress and her staff for ‘taking a stand against authority’. Mr Frank Ebert said:’ I believe the building programme which the county Council has now announced has happened a lot faster because of your actions. The County Education Committee has now looked at Canvey’s special needs. It is giving Canvey priority.’

Comments about this page

  • Loved Miss Magee, is she still with us?

    By Stewart (24/02/2021)
  • I’m sure I remember a Mrs Smith as head teacher around 1970-71 ish? Or was she after Miss Magee?

    By Matty (10/03/2023)

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