V. I.   Lenin

Draft Decision for the Plenum of the C.C., R.C.P.(B.) on
The Reorganisation of the People’s Commissariat for Education[1]

Written: Written December 8, 1920
Published: First published in 1959 in Lenin Miscellany XXXVI. Printed from the manuscript.
Source: Lenin Collected Works, 2nd English Printing, Progress Publishers, 1971, Moscow, Volume 42, pages 237b-238a.
Translated: Bernard Isaacs
Transcription\Markup: D. Walters
Public Domain: Lenin Internet Archive (2003). You may freely copy, distribute, display and perform this work; as well as make derivative and commercial works. Please credit “Marxists Internet Archive” as your source.README

1. The post of Assistant People’s Commissar to be instituted at the Commissariat for Education with all administrative functions concentrated in his hands.

[sic.] 3. General reorganisation of the Commissariat for Education is considered essential, but it should be more thoroughly prepared, particularly it should be discussed at a number of meetings in connection with the Congress of Soviets. Exact distribution of functions between the central and local bodies of the Commissariat for Education to be discussed and settled there.

4. It is considered necessary in principle to merge the secondary schools (or their higher forms) with technical vocational training under two indispensable conditions: 1) that general education subjects and communism in the technical vocational schools be extended; 2) that practical steps be taken immediately to pass over to polytechnical education, for which purpose use is to be made of every available electric station and suitable factory.

The implementation of this reform is to be deferred pending the general reorganisation.

5. Comrade Litkens to be appointed Assistant People’s Commissar and made to devote no less than half his work   hours to the Chief Committee for Political Education until. such time as this Committee is properly staffed.

6. The Orgbureau to be directed to speed up the staffing of the Chief Committee for Political Education and see to it that it is fully provided for in this respect.[2]


[1] The question of reorganising the work of the People’s Commis-sariat for Education was raised by Lenin in November 1920 (see Collected Works, Fifth [Russian] Edition, Vol. 42, p. 376). This reorganisation was necessitated by the fact that the activities and structure of the Commissariat did not meet the new tasks in the field of public education arising from the transition to peaceful socialist construction. In his letter to Lunacharsky dated November 29, 1920, Lenin set forth his preliminary views on this question (see Collected Works, Fifth [Russian] Edition, page 270 Vol. 52, Document 37). Lenin’s motion calling for the reorganisation of the Commissariat for Education was adopted by the C.C. plenum on December 8, 1920, with the addition of Point 2, which reads: ,The work of the People’s Commissariat for Education in the sphere of organisation and administrative management on a wide national scale as well as within the apparatus of the Commissariat itself is to be directed by the People’s Commissar only through his assistant.”

[2] On January 26, 1921, the CC. plenum set up a commission headed by Lenin to work out a scheme for the general reorganisation of the Commissariat for Education. On January 28, in a letter to the members of the Board of the Commissariat for Education Lenin asked for urgent information concerning all types of schools together with the text of existing laws govern- ing them (see Collected Works, Fifth [Russian] Edition, Vol. 52, Document 99). On Lenin’s proposal the Politbureau of the CC. on February 2 authorised the commission to issue directives to the Board of the Commissariat for Education in the name of the C.C. of the Party. On February 5 Pravda (No. 25) published “Instructions of the Central Committee to Communists Working in the People’s Commissariat for Education” signed by Lenin (see present edition, Vol. 32, pp. 120-22,). On February 11 the Council of People s Commissars endorsed the Regulations on the People’s Commissariat for Education drawn up by members of the commission and signed by Lenin. They were published in Izvestia No. 33 for February 15, and in the course of 1921 served as a basis for the reorganisation of the Commissariat for Education.

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