Prekursorskie inicjatywy Łodzi doby międzywojennej w edukacji, wychowaniu i opiece nad dzieckiem
There is no doubt that in 1918–1939 the development of Łódź education system, like other areas of social life, including providing aid to those who needed it, was related to the establishment and functioning of the local government. After their success in the local election held in February 1919, representatives of the city authorities declared to perform specific tasks related to economic, social, and educational issues. The priorities included elimination of illiteracy, introduction of universal education in Łódź, propagation of reading, and development of libraries and non-school education. The issue of the universal access to education was very important, as the census of children at school age, held in Łódź for the first time, showed that in June 1919 only 38,500 out of the total of 70,016 children aged 7 to 14 went to school, which was a little more than a half; the remaining part of them, i.e. 31,516, were not receiving any schooling at all.
This work presents pioneering initiatives of the Łódź local government which outdistanced those taken in other parts of Poland and which were organized in the interwar period in the area of education, child upbringing and childcare. The article presents activities of municipal departments, whose representatives dealt with the introduction of universal education free of charge to schools for children aged 7 to 14, the organization of an emergency shelter for children aged 3 to 16, and the organization of summer play centres for public school students. Local government activities in those areas are described against the background of general educational and childcare issues of the interwar Łódź.