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in the Union. The other important States follow in order: Iowa, 2,758; Nebraska, 2,698; Massachusetts, 1,784; Illinois, 1,641; Missouri, 1,481; New Jersey, 1,238; California, 1,063; Minnesota, 1,046; Oregon, 1,020. All the other States in the Union have each less than 1,000 high-school students in normal training courses. Fourteen of them have less that 100 such students.
As is made clear by the statistics which have been quoted concerning the preparation of teachers in Kansas, the cities and towns are no longer satisfied with grade teachers who have had only highschool training. The commission believes that the State ought not to be satisfied to have its rural schools taught by teachers of any less education than that which the city school teachers receive. Education is primarily a State obligation, and the legislature should respond to the need of raising the qualifications for teachers of the elementary schools in Kansas. The statistics show that 82 per cent of the rural school teachers in 1920 had attended high school at least one year, while the training of the other 18 per cent was unrecorded. The commission believes that Kansas should at once adopt a law making one year of high-school training a requirement for elementary school teachers. In two or three years this requirement should be raised to two years of high-school work, and so by similar progressive steps until it includes at least two years of normal training above high school. The State can not afford to allow its future citizens, whether living in cities or in the country, to be taught by persons with inadequate preparation. The money which is spent on good schools is the best personal and community investment which any property owner can make.
Similarly, with reference to the preparation of high-school teachers. The present requirements concerning the preparation of teachers who teach academic subjects in accredited four-year high schools could perhaps be improved somewhat, but it is fairly adequate. The qualifications for teachers in the two-year high schools, however, ought to be raised; and particularly the two-year curricula at the normal schools for the preparation of special teachers of agriculture, home economics, music, and other vocational subjects is lamentably low. The teacher of the special subjects should by all means have preparation equivalent in quantity and quality to that of the regular high-school teachers. The commission is convinced, therefore, that these curricula for the preparation of special teachers should be increased to three years at once and within a short time to four years. Some suggestions as to how this should be done will be found later in the report.
A NEW NORMAL SCHOOL? The attention of the commission has been drawn upon several occasions to the possible need of another normal school in Kansas. Under the present laws concerning the training of teachers there seems no justification whatever for establishing another normal school. To be sure, the normal schools are all greatly crowded during the eight and half weeks' summer sessions, but at all other times of the year they are fully capable of taking care of all the students that are likely to enroll for several years. During the first and second semesters, exclusive of special students, training school pupils, and the short spring term students, there were in attendance at one time only about 900 students at the Kansas State Normal School, about 600 at the State Manual Training Normal School, and about 250 at the Fort Hays State Normal School. At the State Manual Training Normal School, it will be remembered, a considerable proportion of the students were vocational students. The normal schools, therefore, except during a few weeks in summer, are by no means as crowded with students as they should be.
To establish an additional normal school or normal schools with the present teacher-training requirements would probably result in an institution of lower standard than it should be. The commission is convinced that the normal schools have struggled against great odds to raise the standard of preparation. This is no time to invite a lower standard of normal school instruction. Indeed, as will be pointed out elsewhere, there are a number of things which may very well be done to raise the standard.
On the other hand, if the State decides to take the very desirable step of raising the standard of teacher-preparation for the grade schools gradually to two years of normal school instruction, it may very well contemplate the establishment of at least one additional normal school. As has been stated elsewhere, the commission hopes that steps of this character will be taken, but until the State is aroused to the necessity of this action, the establishment of another normal school would appear to be unnecessary, expensive, and fraught with certain danger to educational standards.
THE NORMAL SCHOOLS.
CURRICULA. In accordance with the laws governing the granting of certificates, the State normal schools have established curricula leading to a one-year teachers' certificate. The requirements for this certificate may be fulfilled by graduation from the normal training course of study in the training high school or by completing eight hours of college work (in addition to physical education) in the spring term or the summer session. The latter must be based on graduation from an accredited high school.
Three-year certificates are issued for the completion of a one-year curriculum based on high-school graduation. Life certificates may be secured by fulfilling the requirements of two-year curricula. Special certificates valid for three years are issued for the completion of two-year vocational curricula in agriculture, home economics, commerce, music, drawing, manual training, and physical training. These certificates are valid both in elementary and high schools and may be renewed for additional three-year periods by the completion of one year's additional work for each period. Graduation from any four-year course of study at the normal schools entitles students to teach for life in public schools, both elementary and secondary.
The effect of the certificate requirements in Kansas is reflected in the character of enrollments in the normal schools. (Tables 8 and 9.) At the Kansas State Normal School, for example, there were registered during the year just closed 175 juniors and seniors, most of whom doubtless at graduation intended to enter high-school teaching. There were 241 sophomores, part of whom will leave at the end of their second year with their life certificates or special three-year vocational certificates, while the remainder finish a four-year course. There were 474 freshmen, part of whom will leave at the end of one year with their three-year certificates; part of them will secure life certificates or special certificates at the end of their sophomore year, and part of them will finish a four-year curriculum.
In addition to students in regular attendance, there were 152 students above high-school grade who attended the 8} weeks spring term. All but 12 of them were registered as freshmen. Doubtless, practically all of them were fulfilling the requirements to secure a one-year State certificate.
Finally, there were 2,119 students above high-school grade in the 81 weeks summer session of 1921. Nearly three-fourths of these students were classified as freshmen and were consequently also fulfilling the school's requirements for one-year State certificates.
The character of the enrollment at Emporia is duplicated almost exactly at Hays and Pittsburg.
In outlining the requirements for teachers' certificates in Kansas and in mentioning the types of enrollments at the normal schools, the commission has intended to call attention to the variety of teacher preparation which the normal schools are attempting to give. In the first place, they serve the rural schools in the following ways: (1) The 81 weeks spring term and the 84 weeks summer session curricula both of which lead to the one-year teachers' certificates; (2) the one-year curriculum which leads to the three-year teachers' certificates. Both of these certificates are used almost exclusively in the rural schools. Otherwise, as has already been stated, there is little demand for rural teacher preparation in the normal schools and consequently little attempt to meet the needs of rural teachers. Under these circumstances the normal schools, which ought to be training thousands of young people annually for the rural schools, have through the summer and spring terms and in the one-year curriculum only a moderate influence on either the schools or teachers. This work is good so far as it goes, but it is a very ineffective and unsatisfactory way of building up the preparation of rural school teachers.
In order that the attitude of the commission may be made more clear on this point, it takes pleasure in quoting from a resolution passed by the rural section of the Department of Superintendence at its meeting in March, 1922, at Chicago, as follows:
The safety of society demands a new kind of rural school suited to the preparation of rural people for the new world situation. The present supply of prepared teachers in no sense equals the demand which should be made by rural people. We believe that normal schools and other teacher preparing institutions should immediately recognize their obligation, first, to train teachers for rural schools, and, second, to create among rural people an ever-increasing demand for prepared teachers. Normal schools have done much in recent years to recognize their obligation to the rural people, but only a beginning has been made. To satisfy the real need at least one-half of all students in attendance at normal schools should be preparing to teach in rural communities. All educational authorities, especially those preparing teachers, owe it to the public to emphasize to prospective and active teachers the opportunities for public service rather than the opportunities for the individual which the profession of teaching offers.
For the condition of rural teacher preparation in Kansas the commission does not by any means hold the normal schools primarily responsible. Rural school teachers are not likely to attend normal schools when there have been provided easier and less expensive methods of securing certificates through county examinations and high-school normal training courses. If, therefore, students do not come to the normal schools to secure training for rural school teaching, except in short summer and spring terms and in the one-year curriculum, obviously the normal schools can not train them. The normal schools have therefore done the perfectly natural thing, namely, they have confined themselves chiefly to the preparation of grade teachers and even high-school teachers for city and town schools.
As mentioned elsewhere in this report, there is an important exception to this statement in the amount of rural school consolidation which is being promoted particularly by the Hays Normal School. Under the energetic guidance of the department of rural school extension at that school, many of the one-room rural schools in western Kansas are being transformed into modern consolidated schools. The commission wishes to express its warmest approval of all these efforts and its hope that this work may be given even more substantial encouragement by the addition of other capable members of the faculty in this department.
Statistics from the three normal schools concerning the manner in which the eight and one-half weeks spring-term students were accommodated in classes is contained in the following table:
The commission is aware of the difficulties which each normal school encounters in providing new classes for all the students who register for work during the spring term. On the other hand, to permit students to enter classes organized at the beginning of the second semester is undesirable both for the students already in the class and also for the students who enter at the middle of the second semester. It would be better therefore to restrict the registrations during this spring term to candidates for the one-year teachers' certificate and in so far as is possible to form new classes for them.