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vision made for this type of work. We are beginning to realize that the responsibility for educating a boy or girl does not end with the compulsory education period or with the entering upon gainful employment. Indeed, coincidentally with the decay of the apprenticeship system in the United States has come the realization of a large and ever-increasing responsibility for making provision for supplementary training, both general and vocational, for those who go to work before they have reached maturity.
Public school systems, in order to offer that quality of opportunity which is promised by our democracy, must continue to differentiate schools and classes in terms of the varying interests and capacities of children. At the same time the needs of the school population, which are in the final analysis the needs of the whole population, must bring about another type of differentiation that will take account of the many fields of endeavor in which people are engaged, or for which they are to be prepared. We may confidently expect that our school systems will become more complex as they succeed in providing adequate educational opportunity for all of the people.
CENTRALIZATION OF CONTROL, OR THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE LARGER
UNIT OF ADMINISTRATION.
Many of the reforms which have been undertaken by way of enlarging the scope of public education, and in the direction of equalizing opportunity, have been confined to large city school systems. Progress in these directions, especially for the smaller urban communities and for the rural population, must depend upon the development of more highly centralized State systems of control and upon the increase in the size of the administrative unit.
It is the peculiar function of the State, as opposed to the local community, to provide for an equalization of opportunity through the organization of an equitable system of taxation, the significant distribution of school moneys, and the inspection and supervision of schools. Adequate control upon the part of the State can be brought about only through the development of a State educational office which has been freed from politics and which has been given sufficient financial support. In recent years several of the States have created State boards of education, whose duty it has been to discover the most able administrative officer available for the post of commissioner of education. In many cases the law has provided for deputy or assistant commissioners, chosen upon a like basis. Laws of this sort have been passed during the past few years in Massachusetts, New Jersey, Idaho, Pennsylvania, Nevada, California, and South Dakota. In the two States in which this form of organization has been in operation longest the results already achieved seem to justify the change that was made. State boards, consisting of members appointed by the governor instead of persons who serve by virtue of some other office which they hold, can be expected to render significant public service in choosing, without political consideration, the executive officers for the State education department, while at the same time they represent as a legislative body the people of the whole State for the determination of educational policy.
When the State education department is organized under the direction of professional specialists we may expect to develop a type of control and supervision which will equalize opportunities throughout the State. In most of the States to-day there is need of a revision of the basis upon which State moneys are paid to local communities, both for the sake of enforcing State control with respect to compulsory education, proper buildings and equipment, adequate training for teachers, and the like, as well as for the encouragement of newer types of education, and for the equalization of the burden which the community bears in the support of schools.
The type of control exercised by the State need not necessarily result in a stifling uniformity of organization, curriculum, or methods of teaching. Under the direction of the specialists who are found in the State department one might hold that schemes for organization, for curricula, or for methods of instruction, as provided by the State department, be followed unless the local community had an experiment or variation from the State requirement which they submitted for criticism and approval. Any wise executive would seek to encourage variation and experiment, especially when it is realized that there are in every State many communities that are, and would con
, tinue to be, in advance of anything which might be required of all communities by the State department. The requirements of the State department would, of necessity, be expressed in terms of minima, rather than in terms of maxima.
The case of the courses of study will serve to illustrate the point of view expressed above. In many communities there is little or no attempt to provide any adequate organization of subject matter or significant suggestion with respect to methods of teaching. In these communities, the tenure of teachers is extremely short. Our States have provided manuals or State courses of study which have done much to increase the efficiency of these schools. There is need, however, in many States for a more significant and probably more elaborate presentation of this material for the sake of teachers who are inexperienced or poorly trained. This need is not confined to the elementary school. In the high schools young men and young women are attempting to teach with little professional training. A document like that recently issued by the commissioner of education of New Jersey, on the teaching of plane and solid geometry, would be of very great assistance to most beginning teachers of these subjects in American high schools.
The necessity for State control has been most apparent in the attempt to establish State-wide vocational education. In this field there has been need for special assistance to those communities which were willing to undertake this newer type of public education. Much of the success that has been achieved in the organization of these schools has come about through the inspection and supervision given by the State departments concerned, rather than through the appropriation of State money which has been enjoyed by the local community. It may be said in passing that control by the State of local educational activity can always be made most effective through the granting or withholding of State funds.
Many examples of the growing tendency to centralize control in the State office might be cited. The certification of teachers is being taken out of the hands of local authorities, not necessarily in order that the requirement for entering the teaching profession be made uniform, but rather in order to make sure of a minimum qualification for those who are to teach. Textbooks are being chosen for the whole State by textbook commissions or others empowered by the State with this authority, in the hope that better books will be made available for children, and that the buying of books by parents will prove less burdensome than has been the case under the varying systems of local adoption. State-wide medical inspection has been provided for in recent legislation, and will in all probability be carried out in the more backward communities much sooner than would have been the case had local initiative been depended upon. Provisions for pensions and for minimum salaries for teachers have in many cases increased the efficiency of local schools by providing for a higher grade of teacher.
Whatever control may be vested in the State board of education and its executive officers must be supplemented by the local administrative authority. Most American cities enjoy the right to control in considerable measure public education through the organization of local boards of education. If we omit the larger cities the units of control in New England have been the town, and in other parts of the country the county, township, and district. The town system has been modified to some extent in New England through the consolidation of towns for supervisory and administrative purposes. In the South, the county unit has offered an opportunity for improvement in administration that has not always been utilized. In most parts of the United States to-day, outside of New England, any significant improvement for village and rural schools seems to depend upon increasing the size of the administrative unit. Our present political organization, together with the experience of some of the States in which the county unit has been utilized to advantage during the past few years, points unmistakably to the advantage
to be gained by utilizing this unit of administration. Outside of certain Southern States—Maryland, Kentucky, North Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Louisiana, and Tennessee—two States, Utah, with seven counties organized into a single school district, and Ohio, with recent legislation with respect to county organization, are already experimenting in this field. In many other States, State teachers' associations, State departments of education, and other agencies are advocating the county unit of administration as the only v possible solution of the rural school problem.
When the county unit has been established, with a county board of education elected at large, whose duty it is to secure a professionally trained executive officer, who will in turn appoint, subject to the confirmation of the county board, assistant executive and supervisory officers who will be charged with special responsibilities, the problems of the village and rural school may be expected to receive more careful study and more satisfactory solution. What is needed in most counties is not a supervisory or administrative officer for each township or c'her division, but rather a central organization with a corps of specialists, whose duty it is to deal with the several aspects of the school situation. In one representative county there is a superintendent of schools, a supervisor charged with special responsibility for the work of the upper grades, a primary supervisor-each of these supervisors having an assistant; a supervisor of industrial arts, with assistants; a supervisor of household arts, with assistants; and two supervisors of one-room rural schools. With such an organization it has been possible to bring about an ever increasing efficiency for all of the schools of the county. With a smaller administrative or supervisory unit, employing but one executive or administrative officer, many of the problems of these schools would have had to be neglected, or would have received less adequate treatment at the hands of the one who had to solve all of the problems.
The tendency to centralize control in public education in State offices, under the direction of State boards of education, and with the immediate control of professional executives and supervisors, is one of the most significant measures of progress in modern school administration. Progress in educational administration depends in no small measure in freeing our schools from political control. A lay State board of education, with no axes to grind, may be expected to choose able men as State commissioners. County boards of education, with the resources of a county rather than of a township or district behind them, may be expected to choose a professional specialist for the position of county superintendent of schools and to support him in the development of an adequate county school system,
THE SCIENTIFIC ATTACK UPON ADMINISTRATIVE PROBLEMS.
From time immemorial administrative officers have presented, in reports to the public, data with respect to public education in support of administrative procedure and for the sake of securing support for new measures of efficiency. In recent years the data so presented have become increasingly significant by virtue of a growing professional interest and the development of a scientific attack upon the problems of administration. It is not uncommon to find in a school report to-day a table of attendance so distributed as to depict not a mere statement of average but the whole situation, including a measure of that which is most common, the extremes, and the variability. Age-grade tables and data which make clear the progress of children through the public-school system are to be found in the better school reports. Agitation for a permanent continuing census as the basis for the enforcement of compulsory education is reinforced by the organization of this service in some of the larger cities, notably New York, Philadelphia, and Rochester. Cumulative records, which make it possible to trace the history of children during their whole school life with respect to attendance, scholarship, health, and progress, have been recommended by the Department of Superintendence of the National Education Association and by the United States Bureau of Education and are already in use in hundreds of school systems.
Scales or tests for the measurement of the achievements of pupils have been derived and are applied in most of our more progressive school systems. Records of such measurements have been made available through reports which enable school systems to make more adequate comparisons among themselves than were formerly possible. School accounting has, in some instances, been so improved as to indicate with definiteness the purposes for which all money is spent in terms of the particular service secured, and also with respect to the particular division, school, or subject taught. A system of accounting has been suggested by the committee of the Department of Superintendence of the National Education Association, in cooperation with the National Association of School Accounting Officers, the Bureau of Education, and the Bureau of the Census, which will make possible a complete analysis of school costs.
Not least significant in this movement for the development of a scientific attack upon administrative problems is the work which has been done in the organization and conduct of State and municipal school surveys. From the standpoint of administrative practice, a school survey may be defined as an inquiry concerning public education which seeks to evaluate the work of all of those educational agencies supported in whole or in part by public moneys with respect to their organization, administration, supervision, cost, physical equipment,