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REPORT OF THE BOARD.
this class of school officers, but many of them have, of The BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS OF COMMON Schools
their own accord, forwarded valuable reports on the
condition of the schools in their respective societies, RESPECTFULLY SUBMIT TIE ANNUAL REPORT RE
prepared agreeable to the requirements of the law. QUIRED OF THEM BY LAW.
3. Reports on the schools of New London, LitchFirst, as to their oun doings.
field, Tolland, and portions of the adjacent counties. Agreeable to a resolution of the last General As These communications are made by gentlemen
sembly, the Board caused to be printed twenty-five practically acquainted with the condition and wants of Sa hundred copies of the " Act concerning Common our common schools from many years experience as
Schools," and one copy to be forwarded to the clerk teachers or school visiters, who were invited and emBuils of each school society, ard each school district. The ployed by Mr. Barnard, out of his own compensation, La do remainder are deposited in the office of the Commis- to visit schools, address the children, hold public meetE sioner of the School Fund. The law respecting ings, and confer with teachers, parents, and the friends the schools, instead of being scattered through thirteen of common schools generally.
different acts, with conflicting provisions on the same 4. An account of a Female Association for the imdixs subject, and without any proper arrangement, is now provement of common schools, in Kensington.
embodied in a single act, conveniently arranged, and This association developes a new power, a power placed within reach of all who are entrusted with its every where diffused, and capable of universal appliadministration.
cation, for the moral and intellectual improvement The Secretary of the Board was instructed to prose- of our common schools. cute the measures heretofore pursued, to ascertain the 5. Plans and descriptions of school houses erected condition of the schools, disseminate, as widely as pos- in 1841-42.
sible, a knowledge of existing defects and desirable These school houses, like others erected within the * improvements, and awaken a lively interest in parents, last three years, embrace many desirable improvements.
school officers, and teachers, on the whole subject of 6. Libraries, lyceums, lectures, &c. popular education. With the exception of a few This document shows, that the means of self and weeks spent out of the State, and which were im- mutual instruction, through books, debates and lecproved, at his own expense, in extending his know- tures, have been greatly increased and more widely ledge of the schools and school systems of neighboring enjoyed in the cities and large villages of the state states, he has devoted his time, talents, experience and within a few years past, than at any former period. compensation, to the objects of his appointment. 7. Education of common school teachers. The nature, extent, and results of his labors are This document explains what has been done in conherewith transmitted.
nection with some of our higher literary institutions to 1 Second, as to the condition of the Common Schools, and prepare young men and young ladies for the work of
the means of popular education generally. instruction and government in our common schools. For information under this head, the Board inust
From these documents it is evident that public atrefer the Legislature to the following documents pre
tention has been extensively called to the condition pared and communicated by the Secretary.
and improvement of the various means of popular ed1. The Fourth Annual Report of this officer.
ucation, and that an impulse of the most salutary charThis Report presents the condition of the schools, acter has been given to the public mind and public and of the public mind, in relation to them, as it was
action on the subject. in 1838, in connection with the action of the Legisla. Third, plans for the improvement of Common Schools, ture, and the measures adopted and recommended by and the means of popular educalion generally. this Board to improve it.
Under this head the Legislature are respectfully re2. Reports from school visiters.
ferrred to the following documents prepared by the During the past year no returns were required from Secretary of the Board.
1. Schoolhouse architecture.
school district libraries will embrace an aggregate In this report the Secretary has embodied the results number of volumes exceeding the number in all the of his observations and reflections on the location and public libraries of the United States. structure of a class of buildings which have been too 7. Progress of common schools in the United inuch overlooked as connected with the health, com- States. fort, and successful labor of pupils and teachers. The From these documents it appears that in nearly first part presents the leading principles of school every State, efforts have been made to improve the house architecture; and the second, plans and descrip- character, and extend the usefulness, of these institutions of such as have been erected in this and other tions, within the last ten years. In twelve, a de states, in large and small, city and country districts, partinent, with duties similar, in the main, to those and for schools conducted on different systems of in- assigned to this Board, has been organized. From struction. This document should be sent to every the documents emanating from these departments, it school district in the State. From it any district can would seem, that while much has been done, more, devise a plan suited to their own wants and ability. much more, remains to be accomplished ; and the
2. Legal provision respecting the employment and zeal and liberality with which the work of school imeducation of children in factories.
provement goes on, is a pledge that greater progress In this document, a survey is taken of the history will be made. In this work, Connecticnt, from her and present state of legislation in this country and in long established school system, from her munificent Europe, to protect factory children from excessive la- endowment, her compact, homogeneous, and intellibor, and to secure to them the means of moral and in- gent population, should take the lead. tellectual improvement. The Board have no reason to Among the documents cominunicated by the Secsuppose that the evils of the factory system, as devel- retary, as illustrating the condition, and containing oped in this document, have been felt in the manufac- plans and suggestions for the improvement of the turing districts of this State to any great extent, still schools, the Board would refer particularly to the the tendencies of the system are every where the same, Connecticut Common School Journal. This puband should be guarded against by wise laws firmly ad- lication has been continued nearly to the completion ministered. It is believed, that the provisions of our of the fourth volume, and one copy, at least, sent laws, framed cotemporaneously with the establishment into each school society in the State. The current of large manufactories, are insufficient for the object year is devoted almost exclusively to methods for the aimed at.
use of teachers, and it is to be regretted, that a wider 3. Education and labor.
circulation cannot be secured, by either state or indi. In this document is presented an abundance of evi- vidual aid. dence on the influence of such an education as our Fourth, the expedilures authorized or incurred by best schools impart, and such as every school in this
the Board. state should give, on the quality and value of labor.
1. An order was drawn on the Comptroller in favor It also shows the difference between the social, moral, of J. Holbrook, for fifty-six dollars, for printing an and intellectual habits and resources of an educated edition of twenty-five hundred copies of the "Act laborer, and one who is not. In no other way could concerning Common Schools," agreeable to a resoluConnecticut so effectually develope her physical re- tion of the last General Assembly. sources, and multiply the comforts of all classes of her 2. The Secretary of the Board has been allowed citizens, as by improving the quality and quantity of $828, or three dollars a day for two hundred and sereducation imparted through her common schools. enty-six days' service, agreeabele to the act of 1811.
4. Common schools in cities and large villages.* This does not include the time spent out of the State,
The peculiar circumstances of cities and large vil- although a portion of it was devoted to inquiries into lages, seem to require some modification in ihe or- the schools and school systems of other states, the ganization, or at least in the administration of our results of which will accompany his Report. system of common schools as framed for the state gen 3. The expenses incident to the discharge of the erally. This document presents the expererience of duties of the office, have also been allowed, after his several cities and large villages where a different sys- account had been properly audited-riz. tem has prevailed. The results are uniform, and of Travelling expenses, $210,67. Postage, 841,95 . the most encouraging character.
Stationery, circulars, $11,17. 5. Normal schools or seminaries for the training of
It is due to Mr. Barnard, to say, that in additioa teachers. *
to the sums thus reimbursed, he has incurred er. In this paper a brief sketch of the history of this penses in various useful forms for the schools, to class of institutions is given, with reference to docu- more than the whole amount of his salary. ments, where a minute account of several of the most The whole expense of this department, for which successful in this country and Europe may be found. the Board are in any way responsible, is $1121,79. 6. School libraries. *
As some misunderstanding prevails on this subject, The several steps in the history and progress of by which great injustice has been done to Mr. Barthis new element of popular education, is here traced. nard, as well as to the Board, it may be proper 15 From it, it appears that in New York nearly two state, that, millions of volumes, and in Massachusetts more than No member of the Board, as such, has received three hundred thousand will, under the operation of anything, either as compensation for services renderexisting laws, before the expiration of three years, be ed, or for expenses incurred in attending the regular disseminated through every school district. These meetings of the Board, or in promoting, by corres
pondence or otherwise, the objects of their appoin * These documents were not ordered to be printed by the Le- ment. gislature. No. 4 has since been printed in the New Yoik District School Journal.
The Secretary of the Board has been paid for his services the sum authorized by law, and on the same
principle, that members of the Legislature, and every referred to the accompanying documents for more per diem officer in the employ of the state or national detailed information as to the nature and results of government is paid. He has not asked, or received, my labors and inquiries during the past year. In compensation for time spent out of the State on his this communication I propose to review, as briefly own business, or for purposes of health or recreation.
I can, the state of the common schools, and of The whole amount allowed him, in the way of com- the public mind, and the school law respecting them, pensation, for nearly four years' devotion to the inter- in some important particulars, in connection with est of the common schools of the State, is $3747, or ihe measures which have been adopted by the Le$937 a year; and this sum, and more, he has expended back again in promoting, what he supposed
gislature and this Board in their behalf
, since 1838.
Prior to 1838, there was no official information to be, the prosperity and usefulness of these schools. The aggregate expense authorized or incurred respecting the condition of the common schools, for
whose by the Board, since its organization to this time,
support the avails of more than two millions including both the compensation and expenses of the of permanent funds were appropriated. There Secretary, is 85816,31, or $1473 a year; and for every was less accountability required of those intrusted dollar thus drawn from the treasury, an equal amount with the administration of the system, and the exhas been expended, by voluntary contribution, to pro-penditure of this large amount of money, than in any mote the general object.
other department of the public service. There was The expenses of the Board have been paid, not out no department or officer of the government charged of the School Fund, but out of the general funds of with the special supervision of this great interest; the treasury.
and the statute book, for nearly a half century, bore In concluding this Report, which will terminate few traces of any efficient legislation to secure the the connexion of some of the undersigned, with the progress of the system, or promote the usefulness Board, we cannot refrain from expressing our con- of the schools. viction of the beneficial results of the measures of
The facts collected under a resolution of the Genthe Legislature, in the cause of general education. eral Assembly of 1837, and, at the expense, and by We can truly bear testimony to the indefatigable ex- the exertions of individuals, in the winter and spring ertions and ability of the Secretary of the Board, of 1838, induced the Legislature of that year, with which he has exhibited from the beginning, in pro- great unanimity, “ to provide for the better supermoting the objects of his appointment, and carrying vision of the common schools,” by bringing their forward his noble and well directed efforts for the lasting benefit of our youth. His labors will long be condition, at all times, before parents, and local felt in our schools, and be highly appreciated by all school officers in the register to be kept by the who entertain just and liberal views on education; teacher, and, annually, before the school societies, and whether appreciated or not, he will assuredly in the reports of school visiters, and before the Lehave the satisfaction of having generously, with little gislature and the State, in the report of the Board or no pecuniary compensation, contributed four of of Commissioners of Common Schools. While this the prime years of his life to the advancement of a Act leaves every member of the community in his cause well worthy of the persevering efforts of the unabridged rights, as regards the education of his greatest and best of men.
own children, and, school societies and districts to
and carry out desirable reforms, according to their
own judgment, it aims to secure the more particular
attention of local committees to their supervision, SAMUEL D. HUBBARD, and to enlist the counsel and experience of a Board, LORIN P. WALDO
and the entire time, strength and talents of one CHARLES ROBINSON,
person, to collect and disseminate information, to New Haven, May 4, 1842.
discover, devise and recommend plans of improve. REPORT OF THE SECRETARY.
ment, and to awaken, enlighten and elevate public
sentiment, in relation to the whole subject of popular
Such was the general nature and scope of the
legislation of 1838. The great leading object had
SchooL SOCIETY OR Town. Territorial extent-furnished-seats, height from floor, adapted to chiloccupation, agricultural, manufacturing, &c.-pop-dren of different ages, provided with backs or other . ulation by last census-amount of grand list wise—desks, height from floor and from seat, shell, amount and rate of tax on property for school pur- place for slate, ink stand, arrangement of in referposes-amount received from state school funds; ence to teacher--accommodations for small child
. do. from town deposite fund ; do. from local school ren-platform and desk for teacher--place for recifund-number of common schools, and number of tation--apparatus, such as black board, maps
, children attending the same in summer ; do. in win-globes, clock-school library, origin of, and nun. ter-public high school, if any, how supported - ber of books. number of private schools, and aggregate number
Teachers. Number, name and age--previous of scholars-lyceums, lectures, libraries, &c.—an- education-experience as a teacher in the same nual school society meeting, number of voters pre- school; in any school-follow teaching as profes
. sent, and doings of-public meetings for school pur- sion, or temporary resource-date of certificateposes, attendance at, and interest in-meetings of character of examination-wages per month, with all the schools, how often, and how managed. or without board--fixed or transient place of
SCHOOL OFFICERS. School Visiters. How many boarding and price of board-success of instruction appointed-number of meetings during the year and government as to older children and higher regulations, if any, respecting books, studies, &c.- studies; do, as to younger children and primary mode of examining teachers, and giving certificates, studies--notives appealed to--kinds of punisliwhether by the whole board, or sub-committee, at ment_books on the theory and practice of teachone or different times, strict or otherwise-mode ing, what and how many owned or read-associa. of visiting schools, by sub-committee to visit all tion among each other for mutual improvement and the schools, or by committee to one or more visits to each other's school--difficulties in the schools, or by the whole board--compensation, for school, or with parents, how caused. how many days, how much a day, and whole Attendance. Register supplied or not, how amount-copy of report to school society, and re- kept-whole number registered ; do. of boys
; do. turns to the State Board-other doings of_record of girls; number of each under 4, and under 10; of proceedings.
over 10, and over 16; no, who have attended School Society Committee. Action, if any, on school during the year; for six months; for four enumeration returns of district committees--evi- months; average daily attendance—means resortdence required by, on which certificate that the ed to for securing regular and punctual attendance. schools have been kept in all respects according to Studies. Number of different studies, and name law, is given-record of proceedings.
of each study-number of different classes in each District Committee. How appointed—mode of study--number of persons in each class--length of construing the words “residing and belonging,” in time given to each class studies favored in the making the enumeration in August–inquiries made school ; do. discouraged or neglected. in employing teachers-course pursued in regard Books. Books, name and number of each in the to repairs, fuel, application of school money, visiting several studies recommended or prescribed by schools, &c.
school visiters, or not--number of children not DISTRICT. Territorial extent, city or country, supplied—expense of new books, and evils from occupation-population--interest of parents in diversity or want of. schools, number who attended annual meeting; Recitations, Methods, fc. Order and number do, visited school-number of persons over 4 and of different recitations ; do. in morning ; do. in under 16 " residing in and belonging to"-number afternoon-extent and subjects of oral instruction
; in common school : do, in private school ; do. in no do. of monitorial ; do. of simultaneous; do. of inschool-length of district school in summer; do, in terrogative; do. in which slate and black board winter--vacations—amount received from tax on are used-modes of interesting and employing the grand list; do. from school fund ; do. from town youngest child, en ; length and frequency of the deposite fund; do. from local school fund ; do. recess for-time devoted to study-alternation of from quarter bills--amount of quarter bills abated, studies among the older scholars--frequency and and how paid.
mode of conducting reviews-use of question Schoolhouse. Location, retired, pleasant, healthy books, keys, &c. or otherwise-material, age, and state of repair The alphabet and spelling, how commenced, size---means of procuring pure water-situation before or after words-aught from spelling book, and condition of woodshed and other out buildings or reading lessons, or from both ; by writing words -yard and play ground--entry, one or more, scra- and sentences from dictation on the slate or black per, mat, hooks or shelves for hats, pail, cup, board ; by constant drilling on the difficult words, wash basin, towel, &c.
&c. Schoolroom and furniture.
One or more ; Reading, mode of teaching, including pronunciaheight, length, breadth of each--condition as to tion, definition, derivation, and paraphrasing—the cleanliness and means of securing the same-win- extent to which the interrogative and explanatory dows, number, height from floor, curtains, blinds, method is pursued-how far the teacher illustrates &c.--ventilation, by lowering upper sash; open-by his own reading, the best method-in connee ing into the attic, or by a Hue-mode of warming-- tion with history, geography, biography; &c. thermometer--lue!, kind, quality, quantity and how Writing, it wirat age commenced'; with slate at
paper; in classes, or the whole school at once; in and a considerable portion of the last two. During
have inspected more than five hundred schools
were taught, and to ascertain the universality and Geography-mathematical or physical commen- practical nature of the education given in these ced first-elementary ideas of form, space, direc- schools, I have inquired as to the early intellectual tion, and distance, how given-map making, be- and moral education of large numbers of persons ginning with schoolhouse yard, district, town, how who have become a burden and an expense to the far carried outline maps, mode and extent of their community, by their vices, poverty, and crime. use; do. globes ; do. black board—principles of To enable me to correct and compare the results classification and comparison, how practised-oral of my own observation, I have employed, at my instruction in.
own expense, at different times, six persons practiGrammar-at what age commenced; with a cally acquainted with, and deeply interested in, the text book, or orally-in connection with reading, subject, from many years' experience as teachers or conversation, and exercises in composition. school visiters, to visit most of the towns in six, out
Composition—when commenced- framing one of the eight, counties of the state. The report of one or more words into a sentence-writing out a story of these gentlemen, who has visited 57 towns, inclutold or read by teacher-keeping a daily journal ding 69 school societies, and addressed the children of studies, reading or doings—writing letters ; in 154 schools, and 76 public meetings of parents knowledge of forms, modes of address, use of and friends of education, is herewith appended. capitals, abbreviations, pauses, &c. &c.
2. By official returns from school visiters. History, how far pursued; vocal music do. ; Agreeable to the provisions of the act of 1838, drawing do., especially in reference to interesting blank forms for statistical returns, including the little children, and in the older classes, to the vari- most important points of inquiry above specified, ous trades of the community ; book keeping; ge- were prepared and forwarded to school visiters, in ometry do. ; physiology do.
1839 and 1840, and returns were received, in the Morality—the Bible, when and how read; mo- course of the two years, from all but fifteen school des of giving instruction.
societies. In 1841, information, varying in some Visitation. When visited by district committee, particulars, was received from the same class of by school visiters, by parents.
officers, in a series of connected remarks. Vacations. Length of —what season of the year. 3. By the annual reports of school visiters to
PRIVATE SCHOOLS. Name-incorporated or their respective societies. not-amount of permanent fund--rate of tuition More than one hundred of these documents, course of study-number and wages of teachers, evincing the most minute and faithful inquiry, and number of scholars; do. from the district; do. from containing the results of wide and long continued the town; do. from the State; do. from other observation and reflection, have been forwarded to states-apparatus—library-influence of on com- this department. mon schools.
4. By replies to circulars and letters of inquiry. Public LIBRARIES, &c. Libraries. Name, More than three thousand circular letters, emorigin, number of volumes, number of persons hav- bracing, at different times, most of the points omiting access, terms of membership, &c.
ted in the returns of school visiters, have, in the Lyceums. Name, origin, objects, age and qual- course of four years, been addressed to gentlemen ification of membership.
known to be interested in, and well acquainted with, Lectures. Number and subject of lectures the subjects on which information was sought. when delivered-free or pay courses, attendance. These applications have been invariably treated Debates. Public, or confined to members, ques- with respect, and, in most instances, the replies have
been full, and satisfactory. Classes for Mutual Instruction. Number com 5. By statements and discussions, in county conhis posing a class, subjects, mode of proceeding. ventions, and local school meetings.
Such was the nature and extent of the informa In these meetings, called by public notice, and tion sought. The form in which the information open to free discussion, the most important features was sought, was intended, whenever practicable, to of our school system have been fully considered, invite attention to the defects, if any, or the remedy and many interesting and important facts stated, proposed. The mode of obtaining it, was the personal knowledge of teachers and school 1. By personal inspection and inquiry.
officers. For this purpose, and the collateral object of 6. By reports from voluntary associations for disseminating information thus collected, and awa- the improvement of common schools. kening public interest, I devoted more than two Associations of this character have been formed thirds of the first two years of my appointment, in all parts of the State, some of which have prove