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WHEREAS, The progress of commerce and the general diffusion of knowledge demand common terms for the expression of quantity, and
WHEREAS, In the opinion of the Ohio Teachers' Association the introduction of this system into general use will be of incalculable benefit to the interests of society, therefore be it
Resolved, That in order to prepare the way for the general adoption of this system of weights and measures throughout our State, we earnestly recommend that instruction in it be given a place, early in our courses of study, and that all of our pupils be made practically familiar not only with the terms used, but also with the weights and measures themselves.
Resolved, That inasmuch as the chief interest in the Metric System arises from its practical value in actual use in commerce and trade as well as in the arts and sciences, we recommend all actually to use these weights and measures in their own affairs as far as convenient and also to urge upon and encourage others to do the same, as in this way only can the system become generally diffused among the people.
Resolved, That we make thankful acknowledgement to the Press of this State for the aid given in familiarizing the people with the principles and advantages of this system, and that we seek the same powerful ally in the future. To the end that the greatest good may be done in the least time, we hereby request each managing editor in the State to place himself in communication with the American Metric Bureau of Boston.
Resolved, That we respectfully petition the General Assembly of the State of Ohio, so to amend the school law that all teachers shall be required to pass an examination in the Metric System of weights and measures before obtaining a certificate.
The report was adopted by the Association.
The Association then listened to the following Annual Address by President I. W. Andrews, of Marietta :
THE EDUCATIONAL WORK AND PLACE OF OHIO. It is with pleasure that I meet here the teachers of Ohio in their annual gathering. This year completes for me forty years of consecutive teaching, all but one of which have been spent in this State, and in the same institution. I am grateful that my lot has been cast in this good State, and that I have been permitted to labor here with men whose names will ever be associated with the educational progress of the State and the nation. As a college man I desire to bear testimony to the catholicity of spirit which has characterized all who have been foremost in this Association, the names of many of whom-the living and the dead—are familiar throughout the land. The true teacher will have this spirit; he will be above all narrowness. He will rejoice in all educational work, though done by those who do not pronounce his shibboleth.
A different spirit is sometimes seen. At the first great educational convention it was my fortune to attend, that at Detroit, in 1848, college professors were publicly warned off from all participation in Teachers' Institutes. This was from an ex-teacher, then a book agent from New York, and a member of the convention by courtesy. A few years later,
at another large meeting, a teacher from the same State, not publicly, however, informed me that all the colleges at the East were fossils, whatever might be true of those in Ohio. When a year or two later this teacher had conferred on him an honorary degree by one of those fossil colleges his gratification was manifested in a manner remarkable, not to say comical.
Three years ago, at another educational meeting at Detroit, there was manifested a similar and signal instance of narrowness of spirit. It was not a denunciation of colleges as fossils, or an assertion of the incompetency of their professors to conduct institutes for teachers, for the speaker himself was then and is now, nominally, a college president. But it was a bitter attack on all institutions of a type differing from that to which his own belonged; and it was also an attack on the whole body of educators of Ohio, virtually affirming their inferiority and the low condition of education in the State.
The nominal subject of the address was “A National University”; but the address had as little to do with its title as its author has with the instruction or management of the institution with which his name is connected. The real effort was to prove that all non-State colleges of the country have been failures. The introduction of Ohio was in this wise : Wherever a State college has existed all educational interests prosper ; in the State devoid of such an institution no such interests prosper. Take as an illustration Michigan and Ohio; the former with its University, and the State a model in all forms of education; the latter with no State colo lege, and the State unworthy of mention.
Note that these statements are made by one who had held for ten years the chair of History in the University alluded to, and, as he affirms, had been for many years making colleges a special study. And one of his charges against the colleges of the country is that American young men are obliged to go abroad to study the history of their own country. The whole point and force of the comparison imply that a State college existed in one of the States and not in the other.
What are the facts ? The State here represented as having no State college received the first grant of land ever made for an institution of higher learniny. And twenty years before Michigan became a State a college was opened in Ohio which was endowed with two townships of land, and which was then and has been ever since under State control. A few years later another went into operation, in a different part of the State. In all respects both these are as much State colleges as those of any other States. So much for the arguments founded upon the nonexistence of State colleges in Ohio.
It is complimentary to the University of Michigan that reference is almost invariably inade to it by those who advocate State institutions for higher education. Rarely is mention made of any one of the twenty or more in operation in other States. In the address of which we are speak. ing allusion is once or twice made to the University of Virginia, but that of Michigan is held up to us as the successful example. In our State, when appeals are made to the legislature to grant moneys or lands to our two State universities, attention is called to this institution in Michigan
as if it were drawing to itself great crowds of the young men of Ohio. It would not be strange if some intelligent people believed that the surrounding States were doing a very considerable part of the work of higher education for our young men.
In an Ohio paper the statement was made not long since that probably five hundred young men were engaged in study out of the State, and chiefly in the State colleges of neighboring States.
I have looked into some recent catalogues for definite information on this point, and have been surprised myself at the result. Taking the classical students in the undergraduate classes which are the only ones known in most of the older colleges as college students—the last catalogue of the University of Michigan gives six as the sum total from Ohio. Turning to the non-State colleges, of which the Detroit address speaks so contemptuously, the only Eastern catalogues at hand give eight in one college in Massachusetts, eleven in another, and twenty-six in a college in Connecticut. In three New-England colleges not under State control there are forty-five Ohio students. There are not probably onethird of that number from Ohio in all the State colleges in the land. And as to Ohio and Michigan, one of our colleges furnishes the data for balancing the account between them. If the University of Michigan has six students from Ohio, Oberlin has six from Michigan. There are probably students from that State in most of our colleges. Marietta has two in its senior class.
How is it as to the other States ? Do any students ever wander over the State lines from New York, for instance, where a State college was established a few years ago to meet this very case ? “The leading men in New York saw that there was at last a chance to have something worthy of the State. There was a State with 4,000,000 of people who had sent their sons away to be educated. But when they could rely upon the aid of the Nation they saw there was a chance to make an institution worthy of the State and commensurate with its wants” (President A. D. White, at Washington, January, 1874.) The Massachusetts college which has eleven students from Ohio has fifty-seven from New York, and the Connecticut college with twenty-six students from Ohio has one hundred and forty-five from New York. It may be noted also that the University of Michigan has six classical students from New York; the same number as from Ohio.
Nothing is clearer than that those young men of Ohio who go elsewhere for their college training seek it not in the State universities of the West but in the non-State colleges of the East. Some are sons of graduates of these institutions. Some are persuaded to go by their teachers. The parents of some send them because they think the education will be better, and though they cannot afford it they send them notwithstanding the expense. Others, and perhaps not a few, send their sons East because of the expense; as many Americans in Europe must ride in first class cars, and think their respectability depends on the amount of money they expend. It is probably safe to say that the average Ohio student who goes East for his college course pays three times the sum which would suffice in his own State to secure for him an education in every respect as good. It is worthy of notice that free tuition furnishes little inducement to students. Most of the State universities make no charge for tuition, but their halls are not overflowing. A catalogue just received has the words free tuition conspicuously printed on the wrapper; yet of classical undergraduates only twenty-seven names can be gleaned from the bulky pamphlet of over one hundred pages. But the colleges of the East have been advancing the rates of tuition year by year till in most of them this item is three or four times as large as it was a third of a century since.
It is urged in favor of State colleges that they will elevate the standard of professional education, and bring forward men of a higher type to fill the prominent places both in private and public life. It was said at Detroit that it is the half-educated men in Congress and elsewhere who are the corrupt men, and that the evil of corruption in our public men is to be removed by furnishing at our State universities thorough collegiate and professional education. We should expect, then, to find among the students of the professional schools of these State universities a larger proportion of liberally-educated men than in other like schools. But here again the theory is not sustained by the facts. In the Michigan Law School the percentage of college graduates is less than eight, and in the Medical School it is less than four. In the Law School of the Iowa University four per cent of the students are graduates, and in the Medical School none. In the University of Virginia three per cent of the Law School are graduates, and no medical students. Thus in the professional schools of these three universities there are 504 law students, 31 being college graduates, say 6 per cent; there are 457 medical students, with 12 graduates, say 218 per cent. At New Haven the graduates are 40 per cent of the law students, and 22 per cent of the medical students. These statistics offer no great inducement to Ohio to establish a great university, with law and medical departments offering free tuition to all comers.
I do not propose to reply at length to the attack made at Detroit on the educational work and institutions of Ohio. The extraordinary historical statements of that paper have been already alluded to. Its rhetoric was manifestly the chief thing, and to that history and all else was made subordinate. What was said of Ohio was said to magnify Michigan, in whose chief city the address was delivered, rather than to belittle Ohio. Any other State would doubtless have served the writer's purpose just as well, but no other selection would have made the comparison quite so complimentary to the State where the address was delivered. We often hear the district schools of our day contrasted with those of former times. In all the States there is a disposition to magnify what was done by indi. vidual teachers of past generations. But there can be no doubt that there has been a great improvement not only in buildings and all the material appliances, but in books, and methods, and teachers. There are doubtless many poor teachers and many backward districts, and it will continue in the future as in the past that to a considerable extent the school will reflect the intellectual character of the commnity where it is placed. There is no reason to believe that the country district schools of our own State form any exception to this general principle; here as elsewhere there are different degrees of excellence. The public schools of our towns and cities need no eulogium. Their character and work are familiar to all ed
ucational men not only throughout the United States but in Europe. No teachers, are better or more favorably known than some from Ohio; the opinions of none are deemed more worthy of respect on all matters pertaining to popular education.
From the time when this State Association of Teachers employed at their own expense an agent to do the work wbich the School Commissioner is now doing, the Superintendents and Principals of our Public Schools have manifested a degree of interest and zeal worthy of all commendation. An Ohio teacher inspired the bill establishing ten years ago the National Bureau of Edueation. An Ohio teacher, now and for many years a member of Congress, introduced the measure and carried it through the House of Representatives. An Ohio teacher, one whose teaching experience was obtained in the Public Schools of one of our cities, has been for more than seven years at the head of that Bureau, as the Commissioner of Education.
In the general disparagement of Ohio and her educational work, as given in the Detroit address, the colleges, of course, could not escape. To the writer of that address they seemed small, very small. All nonState colleges were insignificant in his eyes, especially if not rich. Money, money seemed to him the crowning excellence. The hero of Mr. Warren's “Ten Thousand a Year” was hardly more self-complacent in view of his own wealth, or more contemptuous towards those whose possessions were less.
There are uses.enough to which money may be put in an institution of learning, but to measure its excellence by the number and magnificence of its buildings, the amount of its endowment, or the salaries paid to its professors, is preposterous. The salaries of the professors in the German Gymnasium seem to us to be ridiculously small, and the sums received by those in the universities are in most cases but little larger, yet all admit the excellence of their work. A distinguished professor of the University of Bonn thus contrasts the German and the English institutions: “I remarked a while ago that their universities obtained smaller scientific results than ours; but with regard to external matters the English nation has made such ample provision that one annual surplus at Oxford would be sufficient to run six complete German universities for a whole year; that there is a sum largely exceeding the annual income of the University of Bonn is appropriated annually for stipends and premiums, not only for the indigent, but also for particularly diligent students; and that an equal sum is used for the maintenance of examined young doctors, who, for the purpose of further prosecuting their studies, wish to spend several more years at the University; and all this munificence is for the greater part not the work of the Government, but the successive donations of private individuals who thereby have set unto themselves monuments of scientific zeal, such as we, I am sorry to say, would look for in vain in Scientific Germany."
At the Detroit meeting at which the colleges, as well as the other schools of Ohio were alluded to as unworthy of notice, it happened that the necrological paper contained notices of only three men. One of these was Agassiz; another had been for a number of years a trustee of an Ohio