"How the teacher works out his ranking system I'm not sure."

1950s classroom
Permission Granted by Copyright Owner for Use on Book Drum1950s classroom - Credit: Steve Marriott
In the 1950s the pupils sat two by two in rows. The class pictured here is fairly unusual in that it's a mixed class - more commonly, as in We Never Had It So Good the junior schools were single-sex.) Classes were already streamed A, B, C, but even within the class teachers would often seat the pupils according to how they ranked them in ability and behaviour, with the rows representing class 'streams'. Typically too, potential trouble-makers would be seated in easy cuffing distance from the teacher.