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the centre of his district, while the greater number would be less than half the distance.
It may be very desirable, and certainly will be so ultimately, to have smaller districts and more numerous schools.
The division proposed, would, if our counties were all of the same extent, give about nineteen schools to each county.
The Board have no means of ascertaining, but the opinion is confidently entertained, that there have been at no time a dozen good schools sustained in the most populous and wealthy of our counties. It is believed, moreover, that if the requisite funds were at the command of the Board, the establishment of a greater number of schools would not be desirable, for the obvious reason that it would be impossible to supply them with competent instructors.
If the scheme now suggested should be carried in successful operation, all will have been done, perhaps, that is proper to be attempted at the present time. The foundation of a Universal System will have been laid, which properly beginning with society in its incipient stage, will ultimately adapt itself to every period of life, and to all the wants of the country. Well endowed academies will succeed to common schools, at no long interval, and colleges and universities, in due time, complete the structure."*
Teacher's AssociatION IN BUFFALO.
We give the following as a specimen of what teacher's associations may do and ought to do.
January 9, 1839. Present-eleven members. Minutes of last two meetings read and approved.
The report of committee on a “Series of Reading Books,” was first in order. The chairman being absent, a report was read by Mr Robinson from this committee, which was accepted, so far as to discharge the committee.
Mr Potter from the committee on “ Temperature of Schoolrooms,” on account of labor attendant upon a proper examination
* For sustaining such a system of common schools, and a Normal school or schools for the preparation of teachers, the Report proposes, that every county shall raise and appropriate twice the amount it would receive from an equal distribution of the Literary Fund, as a condition of such a distribution ; thus making for the entire support of common schools in the State, an annual expenditure of $300,000.
and investigation of this subject as per instruction, plead for time. Granted.
The reports of the committee on rules for the internal regulation of Schools under the care of the Asssciation, as also of Members, in regard to "absence and tardiness of pupils," deferred until next meeting.
The discussion on the report upon “ Reading Books,” was called and continued until,
On motion of F. W. Parmalee, it was determined that the further discussion thereof should be deferred until the pext meeting, and that the members should bring, at that time, for examination, lists of the titles, and, so far as practicable, specimens of reading books, such as they have in use or are accquainted with.
Resolved, That a Committee be appointed to inquire into the best method of lighting school-rooms-the quantity of light necessary, the proper color of the walls, and such other matters as may come under their notice connected with this subject.
Resolved, That each member of the Association be, and is hereby instructed to report, monthly, the number, if any, of pupils expelled from his school, and the causes of such expulsion. Adjourned.
EDUCATION FUND AND School Laws in ILLINOIS. From an ordinance adopted by the Convention of the State of Illinois in 1918, the following propositions appear to have been made by the Congress of the United States, and accepted by the Convention:
“The section numbered sixteen in every township, or land equivalent thereto, and as contiguous as may be, shall be granted to the State for the use of the inhabitants of such township for the use of schools.
That three per cent. of the net proceeds of the lands lying within such State, and which shall be sold by Congress from and after the first day of January, 1819, be appropriated by the legislature of the State for the encouragement of learning, of which one-sixth part shall be exclusively bestowed on a college or university.
That thirtysix sections, or one entire township, which shall be designated by the President of the United States, together with the one beretofore reserved for that purpose, shall be reserved for the use of a seminary of learning, and vested in the legislature of the said State, to be appropriated solely to the use of such seminary by the said legislature."
Thus the acceptance of these propositions, among the conditions on which this State was received into the Union, secures the means for an extensive fund for the purposes of education. The accumulation and proper application of this fund appear always to have been regarded by the Legislature as an object of paramount importance. Though nothing is found in the statutes like an efficient system of school education, yet ample provision is made for the protection, leasing and sale of the school lands, and for the loaning and security of the school funds.
In the statutes of 1837, is an act, the last general one on the subject of common school education, whose object is to provide for a better application of the interest on the education funds, and “establish a system of common schools throughout the State.” This act makes it the duty of every township which chooses to be incorporated for the purpose, to elect five trustees, residents and freeholders within the township, who shall be styled - Trustees of Schools,” in said township, to superintend the business and affairs of the township in relation to education and schools generally. Their duties are prescribed as follows :-“ Trustees of schools in townships shall have a general superintendence over all schools kept in the township, they shall bave power, under the rules and regulations herein prescribed, to lay off their townships in school districts ; to call meetings of the voters of the township, for the purpose of considering of, and devising ways and means for promoting the cause of education in their township; to make contracts for building school houses; to employ teachers when necessary ; to adopt by-laws, regulating the mode of conducting schools, and defining and regulating the duties of all officers of the corporation ; to purchase libraries for the use of schools in their townships ; and to provide for the protection and safe-keeping of all funds and property of the township.”
No teacher is entitled to a portion of the school funds, without having obtained from the trustees of schools, “a certificate of his or her qualifications as a teacher of the branches of learning taught by said teacher."
In regard to the present condition of the State education funds, it appears from the late report of the Auditor to the General Assembly, that the amount of School Fund received into the Treasury is $279,085 06. Add to this $335,592 32, the surplus revenue, which is constituted a part of the School Fund, and it makes the whole amount of that fund $614,677 38. The College Fund is $55,800 98; and the Seminary Fund $49,306 25. The aggregate of these funds, the interest of which is annually distributed among the counties for the support of schools, amounts to $719,784 61. This is all loaned to the State, at six per cent. interest ; and the amount of interest, for the last year, which is now ready for distribution, is $43,571 52.
The value of the sixteenth section, of every township in the State has been estimated at nearly two millions of dollars. If this estimate be correct, as immense quantities of the public lands and a considerable portion of the serninary lands yet remain unsold, the resources of Illinois for a permanent fund for the purposes of education may be valued at three millions of dollars.
The MedressEHS IN BROOSA AND CONSTANTINOPLE. “ While in Broosa we visited the Medresseh, or college, attached to the mosque of the Sultan Mourad. The Medressehs are always connected with a mosque, though every mosque does not possess a Medresseh ; the one which we visited is probably a favorable specimen of them all. It is a large building, erected, like a monastery, around a central court, with numerous cells for the students, and an open apartment at one end of the court, surmounted by a lofty dome, where, as we were told, the professor lectures in the summer season. The students are in number about sixty. From a charitable foundation two loaves of bread a day are given to them, and the rest of their living they must contrive to obtain for themselves. Some of them seemed to be more than forty years of age, and most of them between thirty and forty. They told us that twenty years were necessary to complete their course of study, and that afterwards, in order to become teachers, they must go to Constantinople, and obtain a license. The Medressehs bave a regular course of study, but the books being in Arabic the students understand very little of them. “ Science, you know, is a ladder,” said one of the students in answer to the question what books they studied; “ Science, you know, is a ladder; we go from one book to another.” They have the study of astronomy ; it is little better than the superstitious science of astrology. They have the study of logic; its conclusions are in the Koran. All their theology, of course, is there, and so is the whole science of Turkish law. Of mathematics they have little more than the name; history and geography they know nothing of.
During the space of three months about the feast of Ramazan, the students of the Medressehs are at liberty to go out into the villages, and act as Imaums at the mosques, receiving contributions
from the people. In this way they get sufficient, together with their two loaves a day, to help them along through their twenty years. This custom reminded me of the habit among our students at home, of spending their long winter vacation in teaching the village schools. There are 18 of these Medressehs, or literary institutions, in Broosa. in Constantinople, of course, they are much more numerous, and some of them contain a greater number of scholars, of all ages, from 15 even to 70, supplied with their food from the Imarets, or charitable cooking houses, attached to the mosques. The students are not obliged to leave the Medressehs at the end of their twenty years, if, indeed, there be any fixed period for the close of their studies ; so that, unless they have friends of sufficient influence to obtain for them some employment or situation, they may remain students for their lives. For this reason the Medressehs are often called “Houses of Laziness.” During the reign of the Janissaries, the number of students belonging to single Medressebs, is said to have been soinetimes upward of a thousand, so that their professors possessed a great and dangerous influence in the capital. The present Sultan has remedied this evil.
The Sultan is said to have resolved on the establishment of seven new academical institutions, three in European Turkey, at Constantinople, Adrianople, and Salonica, and four in his Asiatic dominions, in Broosa and Smyrna. Mathematics, the physical sciences, chemistry, grammar, geography, and history, are to be taught. He intends also to have a large school in each large town. There is already in Constantinople a military school of 400 pupils, who learn the Turkish, French, mathematics, geography and history. A naval school is also in existence, of 240 pupils, and a new medical school has recently been opened in Pera."
G. B. CHEEVER.
Works of Pouschkin. The two guardians of the children of the celebrated deceased Russian poet, Alexander Pouschkin, have lately published his works for the account of their wards, in 8 volumes 8vo. with a portrait from a picture by M. Outkine. Although the edition consisted of 10,000 copies, it has been entirely taken up in the short space of six weeks, so eager has been the zeal of the Russians to make provision for the children of their most celebrated national poet. It is calculated that the literary inheritance of his children will be worth over 600,000 rubles.