Page images

the high standard it deserves; and the real work and worth of a because we have in our ranks too teacher." "The public in general many who are 'keeping school' in

think teaching is easy work bestead of teaching."

“Those who cause there is so little manual lamake no special preparation for bor connected with it. Many peoteaching are now overpaid usu- ple think there is but one way to ally, but those who are genuine work, their way, probably with the teachers and whose hearts are in hands." "The public is responsible the work, and have the true pro- for it. It is a mistaken idea of the fessional spirit, are everywhere un- public generally that the teacher derpaid.” “Capable teachers are has little or nothing to do, has underpaid; poor teachers are over- short hours, works but five short paid. The question of most im- days a week, and but twenty short portance is, How shall we get

we get days a month, and that any one TEACHERS?" “The main with an ordinary education is qualtrouble is with the degree of skill ified to teach.” “People do not and ability in the teachers them- recognize the profession as being selves."

the noble one it is.” “The public 3. The fault is with the public. in general do not understand how - "The people do not understand much time and hard work is rethe amout of work necessary to quired to fit one for teaching." prepare one properly for teaching, “Because the public do not disand the amount of skill, talent, criminate between good teaching and devotion that ought to be put and poor teaching." "Because the into the work.” “Because people public are not aware of the imdo not realize that the demands portance of good teaching.” “The upon the teacher are very numer- people do not understand the ous, such as the cost of education teacher's work.” “Because of a in the first place, professional li- want of appreciation of the value of brary, teachers' institutes, educa- the services of a true teacher on tional journals, summer schools, the part of patron and tax-payer." travel, charity, church interests, a "Because of a false idea of econlittle better clothing than the shop omy. People should be better edgirl, who often is better paid than ucated in political economy, and the teacher." "Failure to appreci- they would then realize that it is ate the teacher. Many people poor economy to stint the schools, think that the teacher is receiving spend money lavishly on jails, and too much now.” “Public opinion other public buildings except is not in favor of better wages,

school houses, on the prosecution owing to a general ignorance on of criminals, etc. Public funds are the part of the public concerning usually spent recklessly on everything but the school teacher. they believe ought to be paid. Even on school buildings, school The rapid depreciation of the value repairs, and apparatus, money is of lands and other realty has so reoften wasted that would do more duced the tax duplicate that the good if put into the salaries of full limit of the law will not raise competent teachers.” “Before sufficient funds.” “Because of the teachers can command the salary squabble this country has got into the profession deserves, public sen- over the money question. The timent must be brought to recog- farmer sees that his products do nize the importance of education. not bring more than half the prices To do this is the duty not only of they did a few years ago, and he the teacher, but of the pulpit and thinks that the teacher should reof the press."

"Because people ceive only about half what he did have yet to realize the fact that ed- formerly. With him it must be a ucation is the prime factor in a horizontal reduction. Settle the nation's civilization and prosper- money question and the salaries of ity, and that education is a better teachers will be adjusted accordsafe-guard to liberty than a stand- ingly." ing army."

5. The fault is with the low 4. The fault is with the hard standard of qualifications required. times and a shortage in the finances. “Teachers are underpaid, be“Because Boards of Education

cause many

admitted who are frequently so situated that they should not be. Wages are thus can pay no more.” “The chief rea- lowered by incompetent competison in the rural districts is found tion, then stay down because for in the fact that Boards can not pay the money paid good teachers will more the tax duplicate is too not remain long in the profession. small. In the majority of country Thus we see that the salary quesdistricts in this section (eastern tion hås much to do with the quesOhio) the Boards of Education tion of professional qualification." levy the full limit of the law, and "Because of the large number of then can not raise more than from applicants for schools. Too $200 to $225. The right to create

many teachers

are licensed." special districts has practically "Most good teachers who are unruined many rural schools that derpaid are underpaid because otherwise depended upon the they must compete with those who more wealthy sections or centers are not qualified to teach.” “Comof the township for their support.” petent teachers are underpaid be“Because Boards of Education in cause they must work in the ranks rural districts in particular are with those who take up the work often powerless to pay the salaries for a short time only and are will



ing to cut prices, and thus cheapen that those are admitted to its lower the work.” “In most cases teach- grades who liave no more prepaers are underpaid. The chief rea- ration than the common school son is found in the crowded condi- course affords and that fretion of the profession and the ina- quently means course at all bility of Boards and public to in the rural schools. With such judge between good teaching and preparation the salaries are already bad teaching." “Because too sufficiently large.” many crowd the teachers' ranks "Because the educational test is who would make better success in not high enough, and too much other business." "A comparative- bad material is licensed.” “When ly poor standard is set up as the the test is sufficiently high and the minimum of preparation and skill. people more particular teachers In other professions and in all will not be underpaid.” “Because trades increase in skill brings in- too many are teachers whom Nacrease in wages, and so it should ture meant to be hod-carriers and be with the teacher." “Because dish-washers.' young people get the idea that it is Summary. The five classes of an easy matter to teach school, reasons given above may be briefly that any high school graduate summarized as follows: In point ought to be able to get a certifi- of numbers of answers assigned to cate to teach, that money is thus each of the five reasons, I have esearned easily, and hence they de- timated that forty-five per cent of cide to enter the profession, so- the answers lay the blame at the called, for this reason. This low- door of the teacher, twenty-five ers the standard in the estimation per cent to the low standard of of the public.” “Because too many qualifications required of teachers, teach only to earn a little ‘pin- twenty per cent to public opinion, money' hence, the supply is seven per cent to Boards of Edugreater than the demand and the cation, and the remaining three per supply is often a poor article." cent to hard times and lack of "Because teachers have not a suf- funds. But let us inquire into the ficiently high ideal of what the meaning of this. Who determines teacher should be.” “Because the the standard of qualifications for public feel justified in saying, O admission to the profession? Are he is only a poor school teacher." not teachers usually the examiners "Because the profession is over- of teachers? Can not teachers secrowded, owing to the ease with cure legislation governing the which it may be entered.” “Be- standard of admission? Have they cause the bars of admission to the not done so? Do you often hear profession of teaching are so low of the majority of teachers in the


[ocr errors]

city country appealing to after it? The percentages given Boards of Examiners to raise the above must be borne in mind in standard of qualifications? Let discussing these answers, since the the county, city, and state examin- number of answers I have quoted ers of this country testify as to the is not in proportion to the percentdemands of teachers in this direc- ages. I simply wished to give the tion and as to the appeals and pe- representative answers under each titions of teachers to reduce the class. It seems to me that ninety standard at least the intellectual per cent of the answers, as represtandard. Then again: who sented by the first three numbers molds public opinion? Does the above, lays the responsibility teacher expect some one else to largely upon the shoulders of the create a public sentiment that shall teacher. demand better things of the teach- A large number of answers subers and for the teachers? Does mitted were simply efforts to prove the man who has wares to sell ex- that teachers are underpaid, rather pect some one else to advertise his than reasons for that state of afgoods for him? Does he sit down fairs causes producing low and wait for trade, or does he go wages.



BY B. A. FACT, Ph. D.

Parent. My boy is like me. I never had to study my lesson at home;—just picked it up at school.

Teacher. Yes, and he will meet with your kind of success.

P. Why, Skim is "smart"; — he learns without studying.

T. Yes. But "smart" people never meet with success. The smartest pup

-pup — pupil (excuse me for stuttering) in your class and mine made the greatest failure.

P. But my child gets good grades.

T. Grades have little to do with future success. I could not wish your boy a greater misfortune than that he be able to get “good grades” without studying. Find out whether or not he studies: it is not so much difference about his grades.

P. Well, Skim never falls below 70 in any branch.

T. If he is "smart" he should never fall below 95. You do not know what a good grade is. Anything below 95 is a failure for your child if he is "smart"; yet you are satisfied with 70.

P. I have not seen his report wasted all the time he has given to card, but he tells me he is all right the High School. What little he and above 70.

knows has been absorbed and it T. No. Most parents think all will evaporate as soon as he leaves grades on a report card are good.

school. But few see the card even when P. I find that my boy's education they look at it. You are calling is not practical. his card good and the fact is, it is

T. No, your boy's education is a failure.

nothing. He hasn't any. He can P. My child gets as good grades do nothing outside of class and as Nancy Slow who studies every never will until you get him to evening.

work. Do not ask him whether or T. But there will be a difference not he can get his lesson at school. in the results. Nancy's studious Make him study two hours every habits will win her success; while evening. If he runs out of work, the idle, time-killing habit of your ask his teacher to give him more. boy will make him a brilliant non- Do not ask him what he should entity. Take him out of school and study at home, ask his teacher. put him at work if he does not study

P. The school is not what it in the evening.

used to be for my child can not P. But Skim says he can get his eyen spell and cipher. lessons at school.

T. You are mistaken. FourT. And you believe him. That fifths of the pupils are diliis where the trouble lies. He wants

gent students and far superior in a 70-percent Diploma. After he

scholarship to those of your day. gets this deceptive thing, watch The average child is as well eduhim sit around town some years cated now at fourteen as you were "waiting for something to turn up." at eighteen. You are judging all

P. What should I do to help by yours. Skim does not study any him after he is graduated?

and just knows enough to filch 70 T. Die. Throw him upon his percent from other pupils and get own responsibility. This is heroic a 70-percent Diploma. He spends treatment (for you) but it is the only his evenings on the streets, or playway to redeem him. Before he ing pins at the candy-shops, or losstarves, he will begin at the bottom ing his character; and his days in at $2 a week and learn how to work. trying to pick up 70 percent at He has been toying along on 70- school. He is very much amused percent in the High School when by the vulgar constructions he puts he should have been earning 95, upon his teacher's questions, at the until he is “above work.” He has method by which he secures his 70

« PreviousContinue »