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No. They are quite separate in religious instruction. If the commune can afford the pieans, they are separated into different schools. But when only one can be erected, the religious instruction is given by different persons. It is usual to give the religious instruction in the morning, because the attention is the freshest. How many
different sects are there in Prussia ? There are Catholics and Protestants, Lutherans and Calvinists ; some very few Mennonites, and some Jews.
Are not the Lutherans and Calvinists now united ?
Yes. Not throughout the whole Monarchy, but in some divisions of it ; the union being promoted by the Government, so that when the different members of the church are pleased to do this, the Government gives every facility.
Suppose a school contains both Catholics and Protestants, do both the Protestant and Catholic clergymen superintend it?
Does the Protestant father have no apprehension that the Catholic master will try to make a convert of his son, or vice versa ?
No.—The children are always educated in the religion of the father.
How can they teach the history of the reformation in the schools ?
It is taught only very generally.
Is there any considerable portion of time devoted to religious instruction ?
Yes.-From four to six hours a week, there being a religious lesson almost every day.
Are there prayers in the schools ?
The master would have a prayer equally approved by the different sects.
Are the Jewish children obliged to attend during the prayer ?
Yes.—The moment the children have taken their seats, they rise, and one of them, the monitors, or the teacher bimself, engages in prayer, while the children stand.
Have they forms of prayer among the Lutherans ?
Yes.—But in some parts I believe they are also extemporaneous.
You have not stated what payment is required from each child ?
Religious Faith of the Teacher.
It varies; I am not sure what it is.
Even the very poor purents do pay something for the tuition of their children?
Yes.-A small contribution; but those who are receiving alms, and those on the poor list, do not pay. There are schools for the poor; and, besides, some free places to most of the grammar schools.
Do you remember from your own knowledge, what the character and attainments of the schoolmasters were, previous to the
I do not recollect; but I know they were very badly composed of non-commissioned officers, organists, and half drunken people. It has not risen like a fountain at once. Since 1770, there has been much done in Russia, and throughout Germany, for promoting a proper education of Teachers, and by them of children.
In your own observation has there been a very marked improvement in the character and attainments of schoolmasters, owing to the pains taken to which you have referred ?
A very decided improvement.
In these schools is there a perfect equality of privileges to persons of all religious denominations?
Yes; without any distinction.
Are the Jews allowed to have any share in the management of the public schools ?
No.—They are not; their children may attend the schools, but when they are numerous enough, or wealthy enough, they may erect a separate school. We have an example in the town of Munster, where they have erected so excellent a school, that many christian children, both Catholics and Protestants attend it.
The Schoolmaster is named of that persuasion of which a majority of the children consist ? Usually.
there always one of the faith of the minority ? Not a schoolmaster, but a religious teacher. Is there a religious test in any of the schools ? No. Who appoints the Board of Superintendents in the districts ?
They are partly chosen by the inhabitants, and partly by the government.
Are the schools in Prussia endowed with land ?
In some instances they are. The whole church lands also reverted, and were put at the disposal of the State. When convents and other ecclesiastical institutions were suppressed, they were given to the general school fund.
Course of Instruction in the Schools.
Are female teachers employed in the schools ?
In every school where female teachers are, there is, at the same time, one male teacher. They are never quite alone. We have excellent seminaries for female teachers, principally in the province of Westphalia. They were founded on the old Catholic Bishopricks of Munster and Puderborn ; and the system has been found to do so much good, that the Prussian government is now endeavoring to introduce female teachers throughout the Monarchy.
Of how many kinds are the elementary schools?
Of the popular schools there are three gradations. The first are elementary schools, which are for the whole mass of the population. By the law of Prussia, every child, from its sixth to the end of its fourteenth year, mnst be kept at school by its parent or guardian. The indispensable branches taught, are ist, Religion ; 2dly, Arithmetic; 3dly, Singing ; 4thly, Reading ; 5thly, Writing ; 6thly, Gymnastic Exercises; and in the large elementary schools there are taught, in addition to these, 7thly, the German language; 8thly, the elements of Geometry and Drawing; 9thly, the elements of Physic, Geography, and Prussian History; and 10thly, simple manual labor and agriculture. In the schools for girls, female works are added — sowing, knitting, and so on. This is the first gradation, and every district or commune is bound to have such a school. If a commune is too poor to maintain a school by itself, it may combine with the neighboring one, provided that the children of both can come together at all seasons of the year, without too great inconvenience. If this cannot be done, the commune must apply first to the consistory of the Province, which will aid it with funds to a certain amount; but if more help is necessary, they must apply to the Minister of Public Instruction who will make up
The middle schools are the second gradation. They are formed only in towns, not in the country. The branches taught in them are, first, Religion and Morals ; secondly, Reading, the German language, the German classics, composition and style ; thirdly, Foreign modern languages; fourthly, Latin, as much as is needed to exercise the faculties and judgment; fifthly, the elements of Mathematics, and a complete practical Arithmetic; sixthly, Natural Philosophy, to explain the phenomena of Nature, Chemistry and Natural History ; seventhly, Geography the use of the Globes, Astronomy and History, especiallyof, Prussia ; eighthly, Drawing ; ninthly, Ornamental writing; tenthly, singing ; eleventhly, Gymnastic exercises.
Dves every town have a middle school?
Speech of Mr Johnston.
Not every town, but the large towns, that is towns of 3000 or 4000 inhabitants. The law demands a middle school for a town of 1500 inhabitants, but indulgence is shown these smaller places, which already have good schools of the first gradation.
At what age do the children go to the middle schools ?
Are the masters of these middle schools trained in the same seminaries as the teachers of the elementary schools ?
There are sometimes but not always separate seminaries for them.
Is it equally obligatory to send children to the middle schools ? No.—They may or may not.
Are they tnore expensive than the schools of the first gradation ?
Are the boys and girls who go to those middle schools from the families of tradesmen and opulent farmers ?
Not opulent, but in such a situation that they can afford to pay a little more. There are also mechanics in good circumstances who send their children there. Every one who can afford it may do it.
Will you state the number of middle schools, pupils, &c.?
In the year 1831, there were middle schools for boys, 481for girls 342, in all 823. Of pupils there were boys, 56,879; girls 40,598, in all 97,477. Of Teachers there were males, 2,296, females 241. In the middle schools the different branches of instruction are usually taught by different teachers.
How many hours a day does the tuition of the middle schools continue?
Seven hours, except Wednesdays and Saturdays, when there is no school in the afternoon.
EDUCATION IN THE BACKWOODS.
In the late Education Convention, held at Columbus, Ohio, Mr Johnston, of Carroll, is reported in the Cincinnati Journal, to have addressed the meeting to the following effect.
We are in the habit, said Mr Johnston, of calling ourselves the most enlightened, intelligent people on earth, but after the developments of this evening respecting Prussia, and even Russia, can we pretend that there is any good foundation for this habitual self-applause? We call our fellow-citizens all enlight
His Description of Western Schools.
ened and intelligent, surely calculating that they will return the compliment to ourselves; and flattery is more agreeable to human nature than truth.
But what is, what has been, the state of common school education among us? I well remember when I used to wade three miles, over my little knees in snow, to the district school. The population was sparse and poor. Our school house was built of logs, without glass windows, but with plenty of inlets between the logs for air and light-our chimney was of wood. It always took the whole time of one boy to pile on fuel enough to keep us any ways warm, and the whole time of another to pour water down the chimney to keep our school house from taking fire.
Our teacher was a good man, and taught us all he knew. But his attainments were not great. As to astronomy, he never had an idea but that the earth was as flat as the plate on which he ate his breakfast; and as to mathematics, the difference between the numerator and denominator of a vulgar fraction, was a mystery of science altogether beyond his depth.
His plan was to begin with us at · Booby,' in the spellingbook, and go on with us regularly to the story of the Fox and the Bramble.' Then in the spring, summer and fall, we were all set to work in the bushes, clearing up our farms, and before the next winter's school began, it was invariably found that we had all slipped back to · Booby' again. So it went on from year to year, and such was the only school, and such was the only teacher I ever enjoyed, till I went to study law with a gentlemen whom I now see in this assembly. But my
teacher was a worthy man--peace be to ashes-it was last autumn, that with tears of grateful recollection, I put fresh sods over his grave.
But the people, sir, now expect us to do something to make our common schools efficient. When I had saddled my horse to come this season to attend the Legislature, I saw an old gentleman approaching me who could neither read nor write. And who was be that should presume to approach the Representative of Carroll county? He was one of my constituents, sir, and he had come to give me my instructions. . Well, Johnston,' said he, are you off ? Yes, I'm off.' He seized my hand in his iron grasp, and exclaimed with the deepest emphasis, • Do, Johnston, get something done for the SCHOOL LAW. LET US HAVE SCHOOLS.' This, sir, is the first desire of the people of my part of the country, and they are ready to pay the expense.'