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country, the commission has used salary statistics gathered by the United States Bureau of Education covering the year 1921–22. Reference to the succeeding table shows the average salaries for professors, associate professors, assistant professors, and instructors at the University of Kansas and the Kansas State Agricultural College, together with the average salaries for the same faculty grades at 84 State universities and colleges. Inasmuch as the 84 institutions represent all types and sizes of higher institutions located in every section of the country, it seemed wise to choose 12 State institutions located in States comparable in type and importance with Kansas. For this purpose the following 12 institutions were selected: University of Illinois, Indiana University, Purdue University, Iowa State College, University of Michigan, Michigan Agricultural College, University of Minnesota, University of Nebraska, Ohio State University, University of Missouri, the State University of Iowa, and the University of Wisconsin. The table is as follows:
Comparison of average salaries at State universities and colleges, 1921–22.1
1 These salary rates have been compiled from statistics submitted to the Bureau of Education by the institutions in the autumn of 1921, except as noted.
2 From reports sent direct to the survey commission.
In comparing the salaries at the State agricultural college with those at the university it would be recalled that a high percentage of the faculty at the former institution are paid on an 11 months' basis, whereas all, or practically all, the faculty at the university are on a 9 months' basis. Those who teach in the summer school receive extra compensation. For this reason, in the above comparison of salaries at the university and the agricultural college, it has been
thought best to take the average salary of the two institutions and compare this figure with average salaries at the other State universities and colleges where both salary bases are also used.
The commission was frankly amazed at the poor showing of the salaries at the University of Kansas and the Kansas State Agricultural College as compared to those at other State institutions in the United States. It is difficult to believe that these two institutions, which ought to rank in salaries with those among the upper one-fourth of State higher institutions in the country, are, except in one instance, below the average for the entire country, including a great number of small State institutions located in Southern and Western States.
It is not with the average State in the Union, however, that Kansas would wish to be compared. The people of this Commonwealth think of their great State as comparing in importance with Iowa, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin, Indiana, Minnoesta, Ohio, and Missouri. Yet when the average salaries at the University of Kansas and the State Agricultural College are compared with those at 12 State colleges and universities located in those States, it is found that the average salaries exceed the average at the university and the State agricultural college by, professors, 22.6 per cent; associate professors, 24.2 per cent; assistant professors, 23.6 per cent; instructors, 13.6 per cent.
These figures tell their own story. Kansas is far behind other progressive States in the salaries which are paid to the faculty at the university and the agricultural college. The fact that this same condition has existed for several years accounts in no small measure for the loss of promising and progressive members of the faculty, many of whom could have been retained if the salary basis had been higher.
At the same time there are a number of older members of the faculty at the higher institutions who have rendered long and highly honorable service to the State who naturally have to be replaced by younger men from time to time. Upon such occasions the administrative officials should have the opportunity, if it seems desirable, to go to other important institutions to bid for the services of young men of promise. Barring this opportunity, an institution is forced to adopt the policy of always promoting members of the faculty to the more important positions, even though in some instances it is by no means the most desirable thing to do..
Such a condition is not worthy of the great State of Kansas. The figures show that Kansas ranks among the first three or four States in the Union as to proportion of its population in college and university. In other words, the people of Kansas as individuals appreciate the value of an education. The best educational service is the most worthwhile, and Kansas bids fair not to retain this su
perior service unless it is willing to increase considerably the basis of salaries at the university and the agricultural college.
The evidence concerning salaries at the normal schools indicates a somewhat more satisfactory situation when compared to similar institutions in other States. Nevertheless, the commission is of the opinion that the State of Kansas can never have the quality of teacher-training it should have until the basis of salaries at the normal schools is raised considerably. There is and there can be no better investment for the State to make than the one it makes in the preparation of the teachers who give their lives to service in the public schools. For this work the highest type of ability and the most devoted sacrifice are urgently needed. The commission would be happy, therefore, to see new and higher standards of teacher preparation at the normal schools made possible through increased compensation for all grades of the faculty.
BUILDINGS NEEDED AT THE HIGHER INSTITUTIONS. The commission has not undertaken to make a thorough inspection of the building needs of the five higher institutions, but those which seem most urgent are as follows: (1) University-medical buildings; chemistry building; biology building; home economics building; auditorium; training school building; (2) State agricultural collegepower plant; library building; music rooms; home economics building; (3) Fort Hays Normal School-library; increased laboratory facilities; (4) Kansas State Normal School-music building; (5) State Manual Training Normal School-library; training school building.
Another building appropriation which the last legislature began and which by all means should be continued in the next biennium is that for dormitories. For many years Kansas neglected to provide any kind of dormitory facilities for the young women students at the five institutions. The appropriation made at the last session of the legislature was the beginning of the fulfillment of an obligation which should be continued by similar or greater appropriations until all young women students are properly and safely housed. The commission is convinced that good dormitory facilities will help to solve the social problems that always arise in student life.
BETTER EQUIPMENT. Brief mention may be made, too, of the need for better equipment at the higher institutions. It scarcely seems desirable to single out departments at the several institutions, but the commission was impressed with the need for more adequate equipment at the university in the medical school, engineering, and home economics. The agricultural college should have better library facilities and engineering and home economics equipment. The Hays and Pittsburg Normal Schools are very deficient in library facilities, and at Hays there should be much better equipment in sciences and home economics.
A MILL TAX. One of the attempts at permanent progress agitated consistently and earnestly by State-supported higher institutions has been the method of having a tax of a definite number of mills for financial support. The campaign for this principle has gone forward until at the present time 18 States in the Union have committed themselves to this policy: Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, Oregon, South Carolina (for Clemson College), Tennessee, Utah, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.
The arguments in favor of this method of financial support are simple and incontrovertible. In the first place the mill tax carries with it the idea of a lump appropriation, instead of a minutely itemized appropriation bill. The modern State university or college is a very complicated human organization which needs to readjust itself constantly to the changing demands which are made upon it. A lump appropriation through the mill tax provides a very desirable method of enabling the governing body to expend its money where it is most needed and to meet unexpected emergencies. This freedom means a great deal in the efficiency and effectiveness of the service which a higher institution can render the people of a State. In the next place, once the State has decided to use the mill tax policy the State higher institutions feel immediately that there is a deeper assurance of the continued and permanent financial support of the institutions. If the mill tax is sufficiently large to include the erection of buildings, the institutions are enabled to proceed with a definite building policy covering a series of years.
There is only one danger to which the mill tax principle has been liable, namely, a frequent popular assumption that it will not be necessary to increase the mill taxes. Anyone who is familiar with the rise and fall of the property assessments in a State as we have witnessed during the last few years will realize, of course, that such an assumption is absurd. In consenting to a mill tax for the support of higher institutions, therefore, the legislature and the people of a State should realize that any one of a number of conditions, including the growth of student body, may make it necessary to increase the rate of the mill tax.
In Kansas there has been an agitation for 20 years for mill tax support of the several higher institutions. On account of a provision in the State constitution, however, the movement made no progress until 1917, when the legislature, responding to public sentiment, passed a resolution submitting to a vote of the people a
constitutional amendment which, if passed, would enable the legislature to levy the desired mill tax. The measure was submitted to the people at the election of 1918 and was passed by a very large majority. It provided that:
The legislature may levy a permanent tax for the use and benefit of the State educational institutions and apportion among and appropriate the same to the several institutions, which levy, apportionment, and appropriation shall continue until changed by statute. Nothing herein contained shall prevent such further appropriation by the legislature as may be deemed necessary from time to time for the needs of said State educational institutions.
It will be seen that the provisions of the amendment very wisely assume the necessity of changes in the rate of the mill tax and the possible necessity of supplementary appropriations. The amendment was very well worded, and the State is to be congratulated on the wisdom of its passage.
It is to be regretted, however, that the legislature has not carried out the powers conferred upon it in this amendment. The commission therefore recommends that the legislature fix a mill tax sufficient to provide adequately for maintenance and the building needs of each of the higher institutions. By so doing Kansas will take her place among the many States which have taken this progressive step.
HIGHER EDUCATION AN INVESTMENT. In recommending that the State of Kansas take these steps for the further and larger support of its higher institutions, the commission is firmly convinced that few other actions, if any, would so redound to the welfare of the people of the State. The amount of money which the various States in the Union are now spending on their higher institutions is impressive in size, but this fact, far from being lamentable, is an encouraging and propitious omen. Education in all its forms, including higher education, is by an individual considered to be, not a dead expense, but an investment assuring greater likelihood of an increased income, a more adequate conception of social and political problems, and a broader appreciation of culture and the refinements of life. The welfare of a State is only the sum of the things which make up the happiness of its individual citizens. If, therefore, a State is called on to support higher education for increasing numbers of its citizens, it is to be congratulated that it has the opportunity to make so sound an investment as a guarantee of its future material and social welfare.
In this connection it is perhaps not amiss to point out the fact that it is not higher education which costs the people of a State, but rather the lack of higher education. Anyone who will take the trouble to examine the statistics of those States where higher education is on a low level will be convinced that there is a close relation