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education can possibly be. Each normal school, therefore, adapts itself to the community which it is appointed to serve, and no normal school is obliged to conform to what the other normal schools of the State find themselves required to do. * * *
I might say, in conclusion, that the normal schools of Missouri, by virtue of their organization and great freedom, are among the most fortunate in the country. They are not dominated by [a State] commissioner of education * * *. They are not subordinated to the State university as normal schools in many other States are. They have no respect for the traditions of those men and institutions who think that the normal schools should offer a short cut to "professional education." Missouri normal schools stand for the idea that the normal-school graduate should he introduced to his profession by the normal schoor and should thereby be placed on a par with the graduate of the medical college and law school so as not to need recasting and relabeling by a university or any other institution.
Conclusions.—I. The results of any study of this nature are only further evidence, but not unquestioned, of the general tendency toward administrative centralization. The tendency of recent legislation is evidence of the general movement to centralize responsibility and powfcr in normal school control, and, in fact, in all educational matters. Any review of legislation would be impossible in this paper, but the facts relating to the most recent legislation may be briefly enumerated. At least two States have passed during the present year legislation providing for greater centralization of power. California has abolished her joint board of normal school control and vested its powers in the State board of education. North Dakota has a new law creating a State board of regents, a body which is to take over the functions of the former " State board of normal school trustees" and to have charge of the higher institutions of the State. A normalschool president in North Dakota says, in explaining the change of control, that "it was unnecessary duplication and extravagant use of money that led to the board of regents."
II. The recent legislation indicates a demand for educational qualifications for the appointive members of the administrative boards. There seems to be a recognition of the fact that such bodies to be efficient must have clearly defined functions and be composed of persons who are capable of administering the business. Ex officio boards are rightly passing away.
III. Though there are widely different views, my own investigation causes me to favor a single board given sufficient power and so organized as to act effectively as the administrative head of the State public-school system. To meet the objections of extreme centralization a local advisory body properly constituted and organized might well work in conjunction with such a State body.
IV. The status of the principal or president of the normal school should be determined. Though the study does not make this a major point in the investigation, one at once is impressed with the issue. The prominent fact is that principals possess all degrees of power and responsibility. New York and Connecticut represent two extremes. In New York the principal is responsible to the commissioner of education for the general management and direction of the school. In regard to Connecticut Mr. Charles D. Hine, secretary of the State board, says: "There is no State supervision of the normal schools. The principals substantially control the schools. They are not in accord except in the strong purpose to be unmolested."
Section II. INTERPRETATIVE DISCUSSION OF FACTORS IN ADMINISTRATIVE CONTROL OF STATE NORMAL SCHOOLS.
In the preceding section of this chapter a concrete discussion of the present status of State normal school control was presented by Mr. Henry. His study was based on State educational codes and wide correspondence with educational officials. In the present section the authors of the bulletin present their own interpretative discussion of some of the factors involved in the administration of State normal schools.
Types of governing authorities of State normal schools.—Among the existing forms of governing authorities of State normal schools as described by Mr. Henry, many types are found, each of which involves some one of the following elements, or combinations of several of them:
1. State superintendent or commissioner of public instruction.
(a) With relatively permanent tenure, or
(b) Elected for a short period of years.
(c) Chosen because he is an educational expert, or
(d) Elected because of political affiliations.
2. State boards of education or State educational administrative boards or State normal school boards. These may vary in the same ways as indicated under number 1.
3. Local boards of trustees.
4. The principal or president of a single normal school.
5. The faculty of a single normal school.
Local boards of trustees usually do not determine educational policies.—As a rule, a local board of trustees in charge of a single normal school plays very little part in determining the educational policies of the school. For the most part such boards are not composed of persons who are in a position to know the educational needs of the State. They generally supervise the expenditure of the State funds and are often active in soliciting such funds from the legislature. They usually approve automatically any educational policies put up to them by the more purely educational officers, such as the president of the normal school. Consequently, the part played by local boards of trustees will not be considered further in this chapter.
Faculties usually not composed of general educational experts.— Probably in most normal schools the most influential parties in determining the policies of the school are the faculty and the president. It is commonly assumed that the faculty of an institution is best qualified to determine its general educational policies. In some instances this may be true, but in many it is not. The teachers in higher educational institutions, including normal schools, are not employed, as a rule, because they are general educational experts, but because each one is presumably an expert in some specialized subjects or in several related subjects. The individual teacher usually has little interest or competence in general educational problems. In nearly all questions of general policy that arise, his point of view is determined by the interests of his special department. Consequently legislation by such a group of specialists becomes largely a problem of balancing the wishes and claims of a group of specialists. Even if the result were determined by mathematical averaging (as is sometimes the case), the courses of study and other products of faculty deliberations would not correspond to the real needs of the prospective teachers attending the normal school. The matter is made even worse, however, when certain dominant personalities in the faculty secure a disproportionately large recognition of the claims of their departments, resulting in overemphasis on some one subject, such as the history of education, or psychology, or nature study, or art, or any other subject. Furthermore, special difficulty is usually encountered under schemes of faculty control in securing a proper development of the practice teaching situation, which, as will be seen in the next chapter, is one of the most important factors in the successful training of teachers.
Normal-school president is most dominant influence in many systems.—Very often, even when the faculty is nominally in control of the educational policies of a normal school, these are really determined by the president. So powerful is this presidential control in some American schools that their characteristics are generally attributed to the presidents (or principals) by outside educators who are familiar with them. Under this type of leadership some of the schools have served the interests of the State admirably, sometimes for a whole generation under one president. When such a man is a competent general educational expert and administrator, objectively interested in the educational welfare of the whole State, he usually succeeds in maintaining a normal school with a course of study nicely balanced according to the real needs of public-school teachers, and a practice-teaching situation in which all of the efforts of the institution are centralized and by which all departments are tested.
Central State educational officers sometimes supervise normal schools.—In some States a central educational authority of the State supervises to some extent the activities of the normal schools. This authority may reside in some type of State board or in the State superintendent. The possibilities of such authorities modifying the normal-school situation in a State are well illustrated in New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and Kansas.
New Hampshire normal school changed through action of State superintendent.—In New Hampshire the law requires that" the superintendent of public instruction in his annual (biennial) report shall state the condition of the [normal] school (schools), the terms of admission and graduation, the times of the commencement and close of the sessions." Acting under this law, State Supt. Morrison included the following items in his report for 1911-12 (p. 156) concerning the normal school at Plymouth:
Financial.—In the last report of this office (1909-10) the following statement was made:
"The management of the income of the Plymouth school has for some time been growing lax and in some items extravagant. The matter has been called to the attention of the trustees, and I have no reason to doubt that they will take prompt steps to correct the evil."
On December 28, 1910, after several weeks of careful investigation, I addressed a communication to the board of trustees, calling attention in detail to what seemed to be extravagant and unauthorized expenditure of the public funds. The matter was taken up by the board at a meeting held early in the month of January, and a firm of expert accountants was employed by Gov. Bass. The report of the accountants revealed a very untoward condition of the finances of the institution, involving entirely improper use of public money, as well as numerous unauthorized expenditures extending over a period of years. The matter received prolonged consideration by the board, and the accountants, as well as the principal and his attorney, were heard. On July 16, 1911, the principal's resignation was accepted.
The Keene finances were meantime well conducted.
The entire arrangement for financial administration at Plymouth was changed.
In discussing the educational policies of the State normal schools, Supt. Morrison describes the steps taken by the State department to improve the course of study and the quality of the teaching in the two State schools. This description will be quoted in a later chapter on course of study.
Critical studies of Massachusetts normal schools, directed by Commissioner Snedden.—In Massachusetts we find State Commissioner Snedden attacking the problems in a much larger normal-school situation than that of New Hampshire. In his report for 1912-13 he describes the initial steps in getting the normal-school authorities to make a critical study of their own practices. The need of such critical study and the possibility of a central State authority's securing the cooperation of local normal school authorities in improving their own activities are tactfully suggested (pp. 24r-26) by Mr. Snedden in the following paragraphs:
Marked differences have always existed among the normal schools as regards courses of study and requirements for practice teaching. Each school has ex
hibited considerable Individuality in the matter of its aims, means, and methods of instruction, thus often reflecting the particular educational philosophy of the principal or the composite opinion of the stronger members of the faculty. Within reasonable limits this is an excellent policy. It is not desirable that all the schools should be of one pattern as regards their courses and methods of instruction, although, as suggested elsewhere, general standards as to aims and practices should be agreed upon by all schools, after which departure from such standards may be made by individual schools as matters of conscious and purposeful policy.
It is not practicable in this report to indicate in detail the differences which have hitherto existed among the normal schools in their programs of professional training. Some of these differences have arisen from praiseworthy attempts to do experimental work in new and complex fields of education. In other cases practices established by accident or for temporary reasons have become fixed as customs, the educational value of which must be carefully tested from time to time.
All educational practice is now In process of slow transition from a primitive stage of development, in which customs accidentally initiated, or formed by slow growth, have prevailed to a stage wherein intelligent planning and the measurement of results shall give the basis of a more scientific formulation and control of courses of instruction, methods of teaching, and general supervision.
Because of these changing conditions the commissioner, the principals, and various groups of special teachers in the normal schools have, during the last four years, been holding a series of conferences at which existing programs of normal-school instruction have been subjected to careful examination in order to discover means of making these programs more effective.
These conferences have revealed a wide divergence of views on almost every phase of normal-school instruction. Each school, in one or more divisions of its work, had long followed practices which seemed to it valid. The discussion and analysis involved in these conferences resulted temporarily in a measurable unsettling of convictions, often lifelong, held by many teachers. This disturbance has now wholly subsided, but in all the schools a fine and sound professional spirit has been shown in the effort to revise normal-school programs in the interest of greater efficiency. Some of the proposals to this end, now under consideration, are discussed in the following section of this report.
Because of the complexity of the problems involved in training teachers, it is as yet too early either to indicate positively the prevailing forms of inefficiency in normal-school programs, or to state concretely proposed improvements. A scientific attitude necessitates careful and painstaking study of these problems. Existing practices can not, with safety, be discontinued or hastily modified. It is, however, highly important that the principals and teachers in the normal schools shall show that they are alive to the need of steady improvement in educational practice, and that, individually, and especially by joint effort, they shall continue to give time and effort to the discovery of ways and means to secure greater efficiency.
Kansas State normal-school system changed by the State administrative board.—The third example which we shall note of a central general educational authority modifying the normal schools of the State is the work of the State administrative board of Kansas. This board was organized in 1913 to have administrative charge of all of the higher educational institutions of the State. It is a salaried