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is of any importance, and it is a prime them out of the race and tended to bind article of their creed that they have them to the soil and to dull labor, with always done that which they ought to few of the relaxations and opportunities have done, and have left undone noth of city folk. Unless Americans genering that they ought to have done, and ally can be aroused to the unfairness there is abundant health in them. If and inequity of this situation—the conthe city dweller surpasses them, it is science of the city man awakened to his because he is “putting on airs” or duty to share these larger opportunities "showing off.' If he calls them with his country brother, and the conwhicks," they stigmatize him as “dude,' sciousness of the rural man awakened “cigarette smoker," "stuffed · shirt, to his plight and lack of equal advanand “smart Aleck." They are tages, we are likely to be divided into picious of him and of most others out two peoples, without understanding and
their immediate communities. without sympathy. They pride themselves upon their sturdy But in many ways the country people independence, and are generally unwill are awakening and securing their rights. ing to listen to new information or to The advent of good roads, automobiles, heed advice.
telephones, and radios are bringing Evidently a barrier of misunder them into touch with the city and enstanding, aversion, and even hatred, abling them to obtain many of the comhas been growing up between two forts and opportunities of urban life. groups—the rural and the urban folks— The farm folk now in many cases easily in our common country. And if we are drive into town, buy from the best shops, to be a united people, all lines of this visit first-class theaters, hear the finest sort which tend to divide us as Amer- music, listen to intelligent sermons, conicans must be removed. Nothing can be sult the leading doctors and dentists, , more fatal to the strength of the United and dress in the latest styles. In one States than emphasizing such differ- respect, however, progress has been exences as those between North and South, ceedingly slow, and that is in the deEast and West, white and black, Jew mand for and the establishment of good and Christian, Catholic and Protestant, schools. Much has been accomplished rich and poor, urban and rural. Un in this direction during the past quarter less we can largely erase these artificial of a century since our eyes have been lines in our citizenship, and come to opened to the iniquity and un-American understand and aid each other, our plan of affording one type of school for country is doomed.
the city and quite a different and very The basal cause of this division be inferior one for the country, but far tween the people of the city and those more remains to be done. Our educaof the country is the growth of centers tional slogan must continue to be “a of population and the comparative iso
square deal for the farm boy” until he lation of those people still remaining in is given practically the same school opthe country. We Americans but a cen portunities as the lad reared in the city. tury ago were mostly all rural and At present this is still far from being fared alike, but, with the development the case. As yet about one-fourth of the of cities, advantages of living came into total rural school enrollment and 45 existence in which those still on the per cent of the rural teaching corps are farms could not share. This has put housed in one-room schools of the crud
est sort. There are upwards of two hundred thousand of these one-room buildings in the United States, and a fairly large percentage of them were constructed at least forty years ago, despite the fact that school architecture and equipment have been advancing by leaps and bounds during that time. Four-fifths of them have no provision for heating and ventilation, except the old unjacketed stove and the rickety windows respectively, and nine-tenths of the buildings are not properly lighted. In at least 90 per cent the seating is poor and unadjustable, and often where the seats could be arranged to suit the pupil this has never been given consideration. Where in the cities some four
DR. FRANK P. GRAVES fifths of the teachers have had at least the minimum amount of standard train whole matter is that many have come to ing—that is, two years beyond the high view the objectives of the country school school in the country less than one as being quite different from those of twentieth have so qualified; and the the city school. Realizing the hardships turn-over in rural teachers each year is in rural life and fearing lest the youth just about 50 per cent. As a whole, but may gravitate to the city, some people rarely can the country districts secure hold that the country school should any except the youngest, most imma make it its business to retain children ture, and least experienced young on the farm, whatever their abilities, inwomen for their schools. The better
terests, and needs, and others that as class of teachers, attracted by improved soon as possible it should begin to preliving conditions, assured tenure, larger pare them for the pursuit of farming. salaries, professional companionship, Consequently, they insist that all rural and opportunities for growth and pro schools should be built in the open motion, are largely drained off into the country in a purely rural environment cities. As a natural result, scholastic and have the course thoroughly ruralprogress in the rural schools is greatly ized, with rural arithmetic, rural geoghandicapped, and, on the average, chil- raphy, etc., so that the child shall be dren of the same age are at least a year forever tied to the farm community and or two behind those in the cities. More not be lured away. And they would over, in innumerable instances it is all
even in the elementary grades have him but impossible for the farm children, trained in agronomy, stock breeding, however bright, to secure a high school dairying, poultry raising, horticulture, training, for there is nothing of the sort and other agricultural arts, and from anywhere in their neighborhood and no the first would make him as vocationally facilities are available for board efficient as possible. In either case little transportation.
is likely to be done to fit him for memProbably the saddest aspect of the bership in society at large; and the
larger life, richer satisfactions, and city. Of course this effort to produce a broader social view open to those edu- larger school population for each unit cated in the city become almost impos- will not alone be sufficient, as the rural sible for him. His life is predetermined districts are still too poor, even when and he is fettered by a class system as their money has been equalized and fixed as that of Europe. This is abso- economically expended, and the state lutely opposed to our American ideals, must, therefore, step in and provide for we believe that in modern democracy more substantial and better equalized the rural child should have the same subsidies for them all. No one has yet rights as every other child. He should devised a plan that will secure good not be bound to the soil, like a peasant buildings and equipment without money, or serf under a caste organization of and all the special training of rural society, but, as President Butterfield teachers in the world will not help the has put it, “the door from the country situation if the salaries and other conto the city should swing wide." Rural ditions are not such as to attract them elementary education should not differ to the country. from elementary education in the city, Clearly the start must be made except possibly in the matter of ap- through consolidation. This we have proach.
been recognizing more and more during Thus for over a century the growing the past quarter of a century. There concentration of population in urban has been a constantly increasing tendcenters has been breeding an unfair ency to organize larger units in adcontrast between the educational facil- ministration and to secure the enactities of the city and those of the coun ment and improvement of consolidation try. For almost as long a period edu- and transportation laws.
The movecators have been calling attention to the ment began a generation ago in New comparative ineffectiveness of the rural England, and has gradually spread schools; and, since statistics, tests, sur throughout the country. It has leaped veys, and other forms of measurement from state to state through the zeal of have come more into vogue, it has been educational reformers and missionaries clearly shown that the country schools and the force of example. The number have not only fallen short of a reason of small schools and weak districts has able standard of efficiency, but that they now been substantially lessened through have cost far more for each pupil. The statutory provisions in most states and fundamental difficulty in this whole the best ways for increasing the size of state of affairs is, of course, the need of the unit have been carefully worked out. a larger unit of organization. The ex Some commonwealths, like those of New isting weaknesses can never be overcome England, New Jersey, Michigan, Ohio, as long as the small district with its and Indiana, have adopted the townsparse population and consequently ship basis, while county control has been meager wealth back of each child exists generally utilized in the South and in as a separate and independent entity. Utah, and the community or enlarged The unit must be greatly enlarged and district plan in Illinois and other westthe schools consolidated, and, wherever ern states; but, while the county will necessary, the pupils transported, if the often be found to form the most effecavailable resources and the educational tive unit for both administration and conditions are to approach those of the support, the exact method is not so im.
portant as the general idea of consoli- outside suggestion have been aroused dation and undoubtedly various ways through isolation, provincialism, and will be most effective in different states. prejudice. A sin-stricken world did not In some forty of our commonwealths
demand Jesus nor did the Gentiles seek public funds may now be used for trans
after the gosepl of Paul, and the outlyportation, and in most of them the ing nations of to-day do not cry out for amounts are carefully reported.
the missionaries. The peasants of France The only states in which the prin
did not' seek their civic rights, the
serfs of Russia their freedom, nor the ciples of consolidation and transporta
negroes of America their emancipation. tion have as yet had relatively little
The perils of typhoid, malaria, yellow recognition are New York, Texas, Ari
fever, and hookworm have not been curzona, and Nevada. These four common
tailed through any request of the diswealths should remove themselves from
tricts afflicted; and the drunkard and the black list as soon as possible, and dope fiend of to-day do not ask to be the improvement in method should delivered Emancipation, relief, and everywhere be continued. Our efforts
progress have come only when some outmust, however, be patient, though per- side agency, with steady vision and insistent. Rural people cling with great telligence, has had the courage to insist tenacity to the old colonial right of each that it is not a question of what the peolittle district to administer
ple wish but of what will help them. school and to the outworn machinery of And in rural education the necessary the small district system, and they will aid does at times require not only cournot readily be benefited against their age but a spirit of sacrifice. One state will. Moreover, there are always selfish superintendent has recently failed of and bigoted outsiders, sometimes with reappointment by the Governor largely considerable influence and even journal- because he undertook to lift the country istic and political backing, who appeal districts out of their slough, and to the suspicions and prejudices of coun- superintendent in another state was detry folks and to their outworn devotion feated for reëlection by the candidate to the little red schoolhouse." But who took as a slogan, “Back to the onethe policy of centralization is bound to
But so have others sufwin in time through its own merit and fered in the past and will again in the in proportion as its value becomes known future, and one may be proud to fall in by trial. It can no longer be regarded so good a cause as education. “Where as a mere experiment or fad; it has won do you wish my detachment to take its a permanent place in practical school stand?” asked a subordinate of General administration.
Stonewall Jackson. “Go where you But, it has been argued, the country will," was the reply; "there's good people as a whole do not demand or wish fighting all down the line." There have any better facilities in education. This been great victories in the administrais indeed the pathetic part of it—that tion of rural education of late, fellow those who are the victims have not more superintendents, but we must be ready generally realized their own situation. and eager to press constantly forward Progressive movements, however, have on all sides. We may well have high never come about through the request of hopes of ultimate victory. "The mills those who need them most, particularly of the gods grind slowly, but they grind when their suspicions and resistance to exceeding small.”
STRATTON D. BROOKS, LL.D., President University of Misosuri
Stratton D. Brooks, who entered upon intendent of the Boston public schools his new duties as president of the Uni- and for a brief time superintendent of versity of Missouri at the beginning of schools at Cleveland, Ohio. In 1912 he the present school year, is widely and became president of the University of favorably known as a successful edu- Oklahoma, leaving there on July 1, cator and administrator. He has had 1923, for the presidency of the Univeran unusually wide and varied experi sity of Missouri. ence in public school work, having During the war he was Federal Food served as principal of high schools, as administrator for Oklahoma, secretary sistant superintendent and superintend- of the State Council of Defense, member ent of schools and also in collegiate work of the Fuel Administration, first state as professor and college president. He chairman of the Four-Minute Men, and has now returned to his native state to first state chairman of the Boys' Workassume the presidency of the Univer- ing Reserve. He has been trustee of the sity of Missouri, one of the oldest and Massachusetts Art Museum, executive best organized of our higher institu officer of the State Geological Survey of tions of learning west of the Mississippi. Oklahoma, member of the State Board
Dr. Brooks was born at Everett, Mis of Vocational Education. He is a memsouri, in 1869. He spent his early years ber of the National Education Assoin Michigan, graduating from the high ciation and was at one time president of school at Mt. Pleasant and from the the N. E. A. Department of SuperinState Normal College at Ypsilanti. tendence. He has also been president From this latter institution he received of the Scientific Society for the Study of the degree of Bachelor of Pedagogy and Education and of the State Teachers later the degree of Master of Pedagogy. Association of Oklahoma. He is joint He graduated from the University of author of Brooks and Hubbard ComMichigan in 1895 attaining Phi Beta position and Rhetoric, Brooks English Kappa rank. He took a master's degree Composition and has also issued a series at Harvard University in 1904 and was of readers. granted an honorary LL.D. by Colby The University of Missouri is a coCollege in 1912 and by Kingfisher Col educational institution established in lege in 1920.
1839 and opened in 1841 and has an Approximately one-third of his teach enrollment of over 4,000 students. It ing service has been in high schools as comprises colleges of arts and science, principal at Danville, Illinois, La Salle, agriculture, school of education, law, Illinois, and Adrian, Michigan; and for journalism, medicine, engineering, mines three years as high school visitor and and metallurgy and a well organized assistant professor of education for the graduate school. Under the direction of University of Illinois. Another third Dr. Brooks there is every prospect that has been devoted to public school su this institution will maintain its present pervision-for four years as assistant commanding place among the higher superintendent and for six years super institutions of learning of the land.