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To County Courts is given the power to divide counties into school districts. The law implies that it is necessary for each teacher to hold a certificate, that the district in which he is employed may be entitled to its pro rata of public school moneys.
The law neither requires nor authorizes educators to inculcate religious tenets, but all teachers are advised to open their schools by prayer, and to inculcate the fear of God and morality, both by precept and example.
The first Teachers' Institute in the Territory was held in July, 1873. It continued a month, and over one hundred teachers participated.
The Territorial Superintendent of Schools says in his last report, “Utah has improvised and sustained the present school system without a dollar or an available acre of land from the general government.
“ Little more is needed on our statutes other than that which is already enacted, until means become available, or until the school-lands and the munificent grants given by Congress to States may be accorded to Utah, when she shall be clothed with the robes of State sovereignty. Perhaps there are few States in the Union-the Superintendent does not know of any--where so high a percentage is collectable by statute, as there is in Utah Territory, for school-purposes.”
LEGISLATION DURING 1874. The school act approved February 20, 1874, contains the following additional provisions to those already incorporated in the features of the present school system.
For the next two years $15,000 is yearly appropriated out of any moneys not otherwise appropriated for the use and benefit of common schools in the Territory. It is made the duty of the trustees of each school district in this Territory, to cause to be kept in their respective districts a good school at least three months in each year; a failure to do so shall disqualify them from drawing their share of the public moneys, and said moneys shall revert to other districts of the county.
EDUCATIONAL STATISTICS. It would not appear from the tables below that much educational progress has been made in Utah since 1870, when the first
detailed school returns were published. This is explained, however, on the ground that the returns for 1870 are approximate and probably over-estimated, that the Deseret University, the St. Mark's School, the Rocky Mountain Conference Seminary, and the Morgan College have drawn numerous pupils (estimated as high as one thousand) away from the public schools, and that no returns were received for last year from Kane, Piute, and Sevier counties, owing to the presence of Indians.
1870-'71 1873-'74. Number of school districts.....
201.... Number of school districts reported.
163 Number of schools.......
277.... 251 Number of male teachers.
190.... 177 Number of female teachers....
185... 178 Number of boys between four and sixteen years old, 12,761.... 13,867 Number of girls between four and sixteen years old, 12,572.... 13,856 Number of males enrolled ..
7,951.... 8,210 Number of females enrolled..
7,973.... Average daily attendance....
11,389.... 11,842 Percentage of school population actually attending school......
45.... 427 Number of months schools have been taught during year....
THE late Dr. Wayland, President of Brown's University, was very fond of everything appertaining to the sea and ships. A student who flattered himself he knew much about naval science introduced the subject to the President, but he soon retired in confusion, as the doctor knew vastly more about it than he did, carrying away Collingwood's despatches, which he was advised to read thoroughly. A distinguished naval officer spent several hours with him, and remarked to a friend, “I called on the doctor, expecting to be greatly improved by an interview with a man of his reputed learning; but he made me do all the talking. He squeezed me as dry as a sponge.”
Hon. JOHN P. JUDSON, Territorial Superintendent of Schools, was born in Prussia, in May, 1840. He migrated to the United States in 1846, and lived in Illinois, where he attended school. When fifteen years of age he proceeded to Washington Terri tory. After completing his studies he entered upon the profession of the law. November 27th, 1873, he was elected Superintendent of Schools for two years. Mr. Judson's immediate predecessor was Rev. Nelson Rounds, D.D., who died at his residence, near Vancouver, Clark County, January 20, 1874.
EDUCATION IN THE PAST.
WASHINGTON TERRITORY was taken from the northern part of Oregon, settled by emigrants from the northern and western States, and organized in 1853. By the formation of Idaho Territory, ten years later, the Territory of Washington was cut down to less than half its original dimensions, and lost its most populous settlements in the mining regions. Notwithstanding this, the population, which numbered eleven thousand five hundred and ninety-four in 1860 for the whole of the original Territory, had increased to twelve thousand five hundred and nineteen for the remaining Territory in 1863. The Governor and Secretary are appointed by the President of the United States, and the Auditor and Treasurer are chosen under Territorial authority. The Legislative Assembly consists of the Council and House of Representatives, and convenes annually. In January, 1862, an act was passed incorporating the “University of the Territory of Washington." The term of office of the Regents was made three years, and it was stipulated that three should be elected by the Legislature every year. The general government donated to the Territory, for the endowment of the university, forty-six thousand and eighty acres of unoccupied land, and the buildings were located at Seattle, Kings County, In 1860, according to the United States census, there were in Washington forty-six public schools, with eight hundred and seventy-nine pupils, and $16,176 income, of which amount $5,957 was from taxation. There were also six academies, with
one hundred and fifty-nine pupils and $7,800 income. The general government has sustained several schools among the Indians in the Territory. The population of Washington increased rapidly, and the settlers manifested an unusual interest in educational matters, which was shown by legislation from time to time aiming to develop and foster schools.
PRESENT SCHOOL SYSTEM.
No general school law, however, can be said to have been put in force until January, 1872, when a bill passed by the Ter. ritorial Legislature during the previous November went into operation, providing for a Territorial Superintendent of Common Schools, and repealing all previous legislation which conflicted with it. During the closing months of 1873, this system was somewhat modified, though no material changes were made. The following are its main features :
The Territorial Superintendent of Common Schools is elected for two years, by joint ballot of the Legislature, and receives an annual salary of $300. In case of vacancy from any cause the Governor can fill the vacancy until the meeting of the next Legislature. The Territorial Superintendent is required to " disseminate intelligence in relation to the value and method of education,” recommend school-books, furnish all County Superintendents with printed blanks, and report annually to the Legislature. He may examine all who apply to him for certificates to teach school, and his certificate is valid in the whole Territory. He is entitled to receive the same fees for cer tificates as County Superintendents. He may call a Teachers' Convention, at such time and place as he shall deem conducive to the educational interests of the Territory.
County Superintendents are elected at the general election, serve two years, and are allowed annually, out of the County Treasuries, $25. The County Commissioners may, in their discretion, increase a County Superintendent's salary to any amount not exceeding $500 a year; but, in all cases where his salary exceeds $25, one-half of the excess is paid out of the school fund. The County Superintendents must in all cases be qualified teachers of any school within the counties for which they are elected. They divide their counties into school districts, examine teachers, receiving $2 for the same, visit all the
schools in their counties, receiving $3 for each school visited, and apportion the school fund.
School Directors, three for each district, are elected for three years. They employ and discharge teachers, build schoolhouses, make out tax-lists when assessments are ordered, and visit the schools under their jurisdiction at least twice each term. In all school meetings the director whose term of office shall first expire shall act as chairman, and the clerk of the district shall act as secretary. Seventy-two days constitute a school quarter.
No books or publication of a sectarian or denominational character shall be used in any district or public school, neither shall any sectarian or denominational doctrine be taught therein, under penalty of one hundred dollars fine.
A school meeting legally called shall have power by a vote of a majority present to levy a tax on all taxable property within the district.
All guardians, parents, and other persons in this Territory having, or who may hereafter have, the immediate custody of any child or children between the ages of eight and sixteen years,
shall send the same to school at least three months in each
year said child or children may remain under their supervision : Provided, That if the person or persons having the custody of said child or children shall not be able to pay for its or their education as provided in this section, and shall satisfy the School Directors of that fact, such child or children shall be admitted free of cost.
The School Fund consists of the moneys accruing to the Territory from the sale of lands donated by Congress to the Territory for school purposes. An annual county tax of four mills on a dollar is levied on all taxable property, for establishing and maintaining common schools. Fines received for violations of the laws are likewise devoted to the same purpose.
1873. Number of school districts
248 Number of school-houses.
189 Number of schools.....
196 Number of persons of school age.
9,949 Number attending school....
3,828.... Amount paid teachers....
$29,318 64.... $44,007 94