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Public Instruction, the School Commissioner within whose district he is employed, or from the school officer of the city or village in which he is employed, authorized by special act to grant such certificate. No person who is within two degrees of relationship, by blood or marriage, to any District Trustee, can be employed except with the approval of two-thirds of the voters of the district.
Teachers' Institutes have been held in the State for more than thirty years. They have been maintained for seventeen years by State appropriations, and generally continued in session for a period of about two weeks. During 1873, County Institutes were held in fifty counties. They were attended by two thousand two hundred and sixty-five male and six thousand five hundred and ninety-five female teachers. The average attendance of teachers for each county was one hundred and eighty.
The Normal Schools in the State number eight, and are located at Albany, Brockport, Buffalo, Cortland, Fredonia, Geneseo, Oswego, and Potsdam. The aggregate of attendance during 1873 amounted to two thousand seven hundred and sixty-one, besides those in the academic and training departments.
Genesen, Oswego, a od to two thousand
District Libraries are a prominent feature in the educational system of New York. In 1838, through the exertions of James Wadsworth, of Geneseo, and other persons, an annual appropriation of $55,000 was secured for District Library purposes from the income of the United States Deposit Fund. This appropriation continues to be made by the Legislature every year. Furthermore, the taxable inhabitants of each school district are empowered to lay a tax on the district, not exceeding $10 in any one year, for the purchase of library books. Whenever the library money apportioned to a district in any year is less than $3, the trustees may apply it in payment of teachers' wages. Whenever the volumes in the district library of any district numbering over fifty children, between five and sixteen
years old, or of any district numbering fifty children or less between the said ages, shall exceed one hundred volumes, the voters of the district may appropriate the whole or any part of the library money belonging to the district for the current year, to the purchase of maps, globes, blackboards, or other scientific apparatus for the use of the school; and in every district having the required number of volumes in the District Library, and the maps, globes, blackboards, and other apparatus mentioned, the said moneys, with the approbation of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, may be applied to the payment of teachers' wages. Trustees are the custodians of the libraries. They are liable to their successors, and the librarian is liable to them for books destroyed or damaged.
Free Libraries, after the Massachusetts plan, were provided for in a bill introduced and carried through the Legislature by Mr. Judd, of Richmond County, in 1872. The act stipulates that whenever a majority of the legal voters of any city, town, or village, petition for the same, the authorities can assess a capita tax of $1 for the establishment of a free library, and fifty cents every year thereafter for its support and maintenance. The signature of the County Judge has to be affixed to the petition, certifying to its genuineness. This proviso is not a part of the Massachusetts law, but was deemed advisable to guard against any irregularities which might be attempted in large cities, like New York, for example, for the purpose of getting hold of and squandering large sums of library money.
Notwithstanding the liberal provisions made for libraries in New York State, the accounts regarding them are far from favorable. The report of the State Superintendent, transmitted to the Legislature February 20, 1874, says: “For several successive years the attention of the Legislature has been directed to the wretched condition of our School District Library System, and yet the sum of $55,000 is annually distributed in pretended support of libraries that in many districts do not exist. The decrease in the number of volumes during the last year was seventeen thousand six hundred and thirty-eight. This is a continuation of the uninterrupted decline which reduced the number of volumes from one million six hundred and four thousand two hundred and ten in 1853, to eight hundred and fifty-six thousand five hundred and fifty-five in 1873."
The Regents of the University number nineteen, and are elected for life by a joint ballot of the two branches of the Legislature. John V. L. Pruyn, of Albany, appointed Regent in 1844, is Chancellor of the University, and Erastus C. Benedict, of New York City, appointed in 1855, is Vice-Chancellor. The following are the names of the other Regents in the order of their appointment: Prosper M, Wetmore, New York City ; Robert G. Rankin, Newburgh; George W. Clinton, Buffalo; Lorenzo Burrows, Albion; Robert S. Hale, Elizabethtown; Elias W. Leavenworth, Syracuse ; J. Carson Brevoort, Brooklyn ; George R. Perkins, Utica ; Geo. W. Curtis, Staten Island; Wm. H. Goodwin, Ovid; Francis Kernan, Utica; John L. Lewis, Penn Yan ; Horatio G. Warner, Rochester; Henry R. Pierson, Albany; Martin I. Townsend, Troy; James W. Booth, New York City; Anson J. Upson, Albany. The Governor, Lieutenant-Governor, Secretary of State, and Superintendent of Public Instruction are ex officio Regents of the University. i
LEGISLATION DURING 1874.--COMPULSORY EDUCATION.
During the session of 1874, the State Senate passed an act giving the appointment of the State Superintendent of Public Instruction to the Regents. Pending its consideration in the Assembly a new election for Superintendent came on, and the bill was defeated. An act introduced into the Assembly for abolishing the Board of Regents, and the Department of Public Instruction, and establishing instead a Board of Education consisting of ten members, to be appointed by the Governor, and to be known as the Board of Regents, seven of the new Board to be selected from the present Board of Regents, and the terms of two to expire each year in February, this Board to select a Superintendent for a term of three years, and prescribe his duties—was also defeated when brought up for final passage. Both Houses, however, passed, and the Governor affixed his signature to, a rigid enactment designed to put an end to juvenile ignorance in the State. We give elsewhere a synopsis of this Compulsory Educational Act.
TEN YEARS' PROGRESS.
1873-'74. Number of school districts........ 11,717.... II 995 Number of teachers employed at the
same time for twenty-eight
15,807.... 18,295 Number of children between five and
twenty-one years of age..... 1,307,822.... 1,560,820 Number of male teachers employed, 5,707....
7,097 Number of female teachers employed, 21,181.... 22,367 Average annual salary of teachers.. ,
$405 31 Number of children attending school, 881, 184... 1,030,779 Average daily attendance...........
499,469 Number of volumes in district libra
ries...................... 1,111,438.... 856,555 Total number of school-houses..... 11,712.... 11,739 Total receipts for school purposes. ..$5,069,250 29.... $12,088,762 98 For teachers' wages...... ........$3,093,460 46.... $7,415,181 39 For libraries............. .... $26,890 51.... $27,203 79 For school apparatus. .... .... $137,613 49.... $294, 145 68 For colored schools.
$74,611 49 For school-houses, sites, etc....... $647,301 23.... $1,994, 132 89 Total expenditures for school pur
poses.....................$5,069, 250 29.... $12,088,762 98 The school moneys for the fiscal year ending September 30, 1874, were derived from the following sources: . From the common school Fund...
...... $170,000 oo From the United States deposit fund........ ...... 165,000 00 From the State school tax.............. ..... 2,500,032 68 Total. .........
........$2,835,032 68 The apportionment was made, as required by law, as follows: For salaries of school commissioners.
$1,200 009 For supervision in cities........
19,000 oo For libraries....
55,000 00 For contingent fund (including $89.33 for separate neighborhoods) .........
1,962 29 For Indian schools. .
3,264 45 For district quotas.......
888,202 08 For pupil and average attendance quotas.............. 1,776,404 16 Total
........ $2,835,032 98
ALEXANDER McIver, State Superintendent of Public Instruction in North Carolina, was born in Moore County, 1822, of Scotch ancestry. When twelve years of age, he was apprenticed to a cabinet-maker, his father being dead. He preferred, however, to attend school, and was instructed at the Donaldson Academy, in Fayetteville, and by his uncle, Alexander McIver, a Presbyterian minister in Duplin County. He subsequently graduated from the State University, with the first distinction, studied and practiced law, and in 1859 was elected Professor of Mathematics in Davidson College. In 1869 he was elected Professor of Mathematics in the State University. In 1871 he was appointed State Superintendent of Public Instruction by Governor Caldwell. In politics he was a Whig before, the war, a Unionist during the war, and has since generally voted with the Republican party. In 1865 he was a delegate to the State Convention called to repeal the ordinance of Secession. Superintendent McIver displays much ability in his State reports, and has made large numbers of friends by his official courtesy and kindness.
EDUCATION IN THE PAST. HON. ALEXANDER MCİVER, State Superintendent of Public Instruction, contributes the following paper to the Annual.
A FUND for the support of common schools was appropriated by the General Assembly in the year 1825, consisting of the dividends arising from the stocks then owned by the State in certain banks and works of internal improvement in the State, the tax imposed by law on licenses to retailers of spirituous liquors and auctioneers, the unexpended balance of the agricultural fund, all moneys paid to the State for entries of vacant lands, and for all the vacant and unappropriated swamp lands in the State, together with such sums of money as the Legislature might afterwards appropriate.
In the year 1836, the governor of the State, the chief justice of the Supreme Court, the speaker of the Senate, the speaker of the House of Commons, and the treasurer of the State, for the time being and their successors in office, were constituted a body politic and corporate, under the name of “ The President and Directors of the Literary Fund.”
In 1840, the permanent school fund was about two millions of dollars, yielding an annual income of about one hundred and twenty thousand dollars. In that year the General Assembly provided for the apportionment of the income of the school fund among the several counties, according to the white popu