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For Better American High Schools



By LEONARD V. KOOS, University of Chicago

Associate Director of the National Survey of Secondary Education
NE FACES a perplexing prob-

Critical analysis reduced the wide Analysis of the features of organization lem of selection in the effort array to three “core elements of a typi- in a large number of schools reorganized to give briefly some helpful cally successful program to provide for and unreorganized shows schools rep

impression of the results of so individual differences, namely, homo- resentative of junior high school reorgani. huge an enterprise as the 3-year National geneous grouping, special classes for the zation to be superior to schools convenSurvey of Secondary Education directed by

tionally organized. Size for size, up to the Federal Office of Education. Here is

enrollments of about 1,600, the 6-year an enterprise which would have taken

DR. LEONARD V. Koos, associate school (undivided or on a 3-3 basis) has 50 to 60 years of the life of one man to director in charge, gave a prelimi

advantages over the separate 3-year complete, if he were working alone. Com

nary report of the National Survey of junior and senior high schools. Size of pressed as much as possible and with some Secondary Education at a banquet enrollment is a more important factor of sacrifice of valuable materials, the com

given by the National Education differences between schools than type of pleted report will extend through 28 mono Association at the Cosmos Club, organization, graphs totaling at least 3,000 printed Washington, D. C., June 9. Doctor

The library pages.

Koos, in his address, gave a The present proportion of high-school

summary report to the National If facilities and practices are a prophecy, enrollment has never been equaled at

Education Association and other the library will soon become one of the any other period or in any other country.

educational groups who had request

central features of the modern secondary By 1930 the proportion of the population

ed the survey, and to Members of

school. The functions dominately accepted 14 to 18 years of age (normal age for high

Congress who had approved and for these libraries by school heads and school) had mounted to a few per cent short of half. The last two years has

financed the nation-wide investiga librarians are the enrichment of the curtion. The address, greatly con

riculum by supplying reference material seen an even greater influx, in part owing

densed, follows. School LIFE will and provision for the worthy use of leisure to the shrinkage of opportunities for continue to print outstanding find

time. Besides reading rooms, many liemployment. Figures for 1890—40 years

ings of the survey in subsequent braries are providing special rooms, such ago-do not yield a proportion larger issues.-EDITOR.

as librarians' work rooms, conference than 4 per cent.

rooms, library classrooms, and rooms for We have had put up to us a task of

visual instruction. Libraries inamazing proportions in working out adaptations of the training program and

very bright or gifted and for the slow, creasingly staffed with full-time librarians of other aspects of the school to the needs and the unit assignment. The first two

trained for the work, often aided by pupils types of classes were found to be provided

or adults. and interests of a widely diversified school

These better libraries are population. Many of the innovations

about nine times as often for slow pupils intimately involved in the recent vigorous disclosed in other studies of the survey as for the very bright.

movement to improve methods of teachmay be understood to have been devised

Procedures characterized by the unit ing, particularly in unit assignments. in the endeavor to solve this problem. assignment are among the most frequent

Should the study hall and the school provisions for individual differences.

library be combined? The secondary Curriculum change They are known by a wide variety of

survey, reporting evidence submitted by names, among the most frequent being the

17,000 pupils, principals, and librarians on Widespread tendencies to change in the "Dalton plan,” Winnetka technique,'

this and other controversial issues, discurriculum of schools were discovered. “Morrison plan,'

long-unit assign- covered that the proportion of pupils makThe average number of courses offered in ments," “individualized instruction,

ing some use of the library in schools our schools has practically doubled, “contract plan,” “laboratory plan,”

operating the combined plan was more dominant shifts having been away from “problem method,'

and “project

than twice as large as in schools in which foreign language and mathematics, college method.” A notable fact about the first library and study hall are separate. entrance required subjects, and toward the three of these procedures is that the

Unusual efforts must be made in schools social sciences. Fine arts, practical arts, practices carried on in schools reporting operating the separate plan to offset the and physical education have shown de to use them with unusual success deviate advantage of accessibility of materials that cided gains. In certain schools widely from the characteristics of the

seems to be inherent in the combination academic subjects have come to claim plans as described by their originators.




Other findings from a third to two-fifths of all the pupil's No matter what name is applied to the time in the classroom.

remaining six in the list, it was found that A huge project that involves investigaIt was learned that the junior high practices under those designations are tion of the opportunities for vocational school is a vehicle of innovation-a fact essentially identical. A great deal of specialization in the high school finds an emphasized in several survey projects. this jargon may be discarded. The unit increase in the number of trade schools with

One of the larger projects of the survey assignment is distinctly serviceable in less growth of other specialized schools endeavored to ascertain the extent of and providing for individual differences, how such as technical and commercial high to analyze provisions for individual differ

schools. This project records the develop




ment of continuation, evening, and summer schools, and some appearance of use by smaller public high schools of correspondence courses.

A study of articulation of high school and college shows progress toward flexibility in the requirements for admission to higher institutions and improved arrangements for caring for the individual following admission.

Educational opportunity for the southern Negro is increasing, another study revealed.

Investigation was made of the administrative and supervisory staffs in State departments of education and in city systems having to do with secondary education as well as of administrative and supervisory officers within individual schools.

More schools will want to follow innovating practices in registration and schedule making unearthed in another project.

Secondary school departments of research were found to be carrying on in

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In 28 Monographs many instances basically valuable inves- and direction of progress in the schools tigations.

of other States. This is the service of THE NUMBERS and tentative titles

Policies and practices in school publicity the survey. By examining its reports, of 28 monographs making up the

were studied, and a great variety of prom- those at work in any community or State report of the National Survey of Sec- ising practices in interpreting the schools in schools at the secondary level will be ondary Education, will be as follows: to the public were uncovered.

able to note the progress and trends at No. 1, Summary; No. 2, The Horizontal

that level in all States and sections and Organization of Secondary Education,

For reference

will in consequence be able to give more A Comparison of Comprehensive and

comprehensive and systematic consideraSpecialized Schools; No. 3, Part-time In view of the fact that the survey tion to the next steps to be taken in Secondary Schools; No. 4, Secondary has given its attention chiefly to serious

improving their own practices. School Population; No. 5, Reorganiza- efforts at innovation, readers of the 28 tion of Secondary Education; No. 6, monograph reports will see passed in

Fads and frills" Smaller Secondary Schools; No. 7, Sec- review the vast array of practices which ondary Education for Negroes; No. 8, have been introduced in order to effect It is a frequent experience to find District Organization and Secondary improvement in our secondary schools. that during such periods of distress those Education; No. 9, Legal and Regulatory Specialists in charge of the various features of the school that have last Provisions Affecting Secondary Educa- projects have gone as far as they can

been added are among the first to go tion; No. 10, Articulation of High School to indicate the practical utility of the when resources decline. In such times and College; No. 11, Administration and innovations. Those in charge of the these novel features are dubbed “fads Supervision; No. 12, Selection and Appoint- schools and teachers like to have the and frills,” when in fact they are often ment of Teachers; No. 13, Provisions for records and descriptions of the innova- more necessary than the features not Individual Differences, Marking, and Pro- tions before them and to be permitted assailed which are retained because of motion; No. 14, Programs of Guidance; to exercise their own judgment with

the hold of tradition long after they

We No. 15, Research in Secondary Schools; respect to which of them they will them- have outlived their usefulness. No. 16, Interpreting the Secondary School selves adopt or adapt in the different should look carefully at the proposals To the Public; No. 17, The Secondary local situations.

to eliminate those latest developments School Library; No. 18, Procedures in Cur- Unlike Europe with its national cen

in the schools. The report of the National riculum-Making; No. 19, The Program of tralization of control of education, we

Survey of Secondary Education will Studies; No. 20, Instruction in English; have as many systems of schools and appear in time to be of aid in determining No. 21, Instruction in the Social Subjects; centers of control as we have States.

what sacrifices should be made. No. 22, Instruction in Science; No. 23, Most of the States have allowed their

Our Publications in Germany Instruction in Mathematics; No. 24, In- local systems a great deal of freedom to struction in Foreign Languages; No. 25, initiate and to experiment. At the same COPIES OF PRACTICALLY ALL Office of Instruction in Music and Art; No. 26, Non- time that we, as a nation, have decen- Education publications are included in Athletic Extracurriculum Activities; No. tralization of control in education, we the exhibit of American education at 27, Intramural and Interscholastic Athlet- aim to foster in all these States the same Mainz, Germany. Twenty rooms have ics; and No. 28, Health and Physical ideals. How essential it is then for those been devoted to the exhibition of what the Education.

responsible for the schools in one State United States is doing in the field of to have made known to them the nature education.

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How To Live
On $3.12 Per Week, Families Learn

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changes are taking place in the character
of food bought. From May 1 to June 11
there were decided increases noted per
thousand orders in sweet milk, oatmeal,

peas and beans, potatoes, cheese, canned

salmon, and fresh fish, with relative

decreases in less nutritious foods.
Assistant to President Southern Bell Telephone Company
In Charge of Unemployment Relief in Atlanta, Ga.

In addition to these demonstrations,

there is apparent need for training of idle Ten lessons were planned by the demon

men, women, and children in various strators, using the same supplies fur home activities and industries that will nished to clients on food orders. A keep them occupied and perhaps prove to

sufficient quantity of each food demon be a source of some small supplemental SHOULD LIKE TO KNOW strated is prepared for sampling at each

income. Looking ahead to the more or what other school systems are doing to class meeting.

less immediate and long-to-be-continued

Each family desiring relief is given a help the unemployed.

reduction of the working week, some such Many letters text leaflet entitled “Feeding Your training seems to be needed. to the Office of Education have repeated Family,” which is used as a basis of each this request. The following article on demonstration. A mimeographed sheet Commissioner Cooper in Europe how Atlanta schools are teaching the of the recipes demonstrated is also handed

DR. WILLIAM JOHN COOPER, United to each attendant for reference at the jobless to buy better food with their

States Commissioner of Education, had meeting, and later at home. grocery orders was sent in by Supt.

the honor of meeting the King and

At the start there were 11 centers, 7 for Willis T. Sutton. Forthcoming issues white people and 4 for colored and other

Queen of England at a garden party

during his stay in London. He also of School LIFE will tell how some clients who cared to attend. The average

attended the fourteenth international high schools are helping unemployed weekly attendance has been 560, of whom

conference on secondary education and 130 were white and 430 colored. Larger the international conference on commerpostgraduates; how rural schools are

attendance at classes for white persons meeting the crisis; and lessons from has been encouraged. It is the responsi- He was present at the Sixth World Con

cial education held in London in July, England's experience.-Editor. bility of the home visitor of social agencies ference of the New Education Fellowship to promote attendance at the relief

at Nice, France, in August. During his THE FIRST responsibility in meet- classes, both by mailed invitations or

8-week European stay, Commissioner ing the present distress is to en personal calls.

Cooper met various ministers and leaders deavor to get work for men or to

of education in many countries, studying provide “made work” for them.

Study grocery orders

at first hand their school systems. In the meantime their families must be

How are the demonstrations helping to fed, and the grocery order given in the educate persons to purchase more nutri

Geographic News Bulletins home, or through the mails, seems to be

tious food? Only the biweekly analyses REQUESTS CONTINUE to come to the the means that most preserves the self

of grocery orders can determine what respect of the recipient. These grocery

Office of Education for the Geographic orders have not specified what should or

News Bulletins. These weekly sets of should not be purchased for the amount

illustrated articles about peoples, places, of money stated on the order because


and industries of news interest, published social workers feel that initiative should

Should Have EVERY DAY:

by the National Geographic Society, not be impaired by such dictation. But

formerly were distributed by the United

States Bureau of Education. iiii

They are when the supply is limited, and the pub

now distributed direct by the National lic's money is being used, it becomes nec

From ! pint to ! quart of milk

Geographic Society, and may be had essary to tell those receiving aid how to

upon request of teachers, on payment of buy the most for the sum allowed.

25 cents annually for the 30 weekly Bread, or cereal,-especially whole-grain

issues. It will facilitate handling of these Reference cards

or both at every meal

requests if they are addressed to the For this purpose social agencies in


National Geographic Society, WashingAtlanta, Ga., have furnished to clients Generous servings of two or more vege

ton, D. C., instead of to the Office of

tables, including some raw vegetable at reference cards to hang in the kitchen or


least three or four times a week to take to market. These cards tell how


Uncle Sam Helps Blind to Cook to get a balanced ration for a given sum of money. In one case $3.12 bought


a day. Orange or enough to sustain a family of three for tomato juice at least 4 or 5 times a week prepared by the Library of Congress, and one week.

is available from any library for the blind From this simple start the idea was de

in the country. (Price, 50 cents.) Aunt veloped of endeavoring to educate our

An egg, meat, fish, dried beans, peas, or

Sammy's Radio Recipes, published 2

lentils distressed people in better food values.

years ago by the Department of AgriculThe public schools readily responded to

ture and now out of print, is the first our call and organized 11 nutrition classes A moderate amount of fat and not much cookbook to be reproduced in Braille. All to be conducted in schools, health centers,

sweet. Cod-liver oil during the winter months, recipes included have been worked out

especially in northern states churches, day nurseries, and other places

and tested in the laboratories of the most convenient to those who were asked

Bureau of Home Economics of the to attend.

Atlanta's guides to better food for less money Department of Agriculture,


Fruit at least once





Guarding Five Million Children


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to 1930, during which time the school-age consists of from 4 to 12 boys, depending If we save the life of one child, all the automobile fatality rate increased but upon the size of the school and the number money and all the time and all the effort 4 per cent, it is believed that classroom of hazardous intersections which must be expended in the past or in the future safety instruction has been very effective. guarded. will be well worth the effort and expense. HERBERT HOOVER

More than 28,000 lives of adults could be There are now 10,000 such safety patrol saved in one year, it is estimated, if acci- units in the United States enrolling boys

dent-prevention work among grown-ups who protect approximately 5,000,000 of IVES of more than 6,000 school were as successful as it is among children. their fellow school goers daily. children in the United States will

It is the duty of safety patrol members be lost as the result of accidents

Safety patrols

to be stationed at street intersections and this school year.

America's school-going population of 31,000,000 will

Very effective in guarding the lives along school streets 20 minutes before the figure in 723,000 accidents of various kinds, of boys and girls while crossing streets opening hour of school. They must be

on duty until five minutes after the openand the resultant loss from school will total going to and from schools is the School

ing hour. Patrol boys escort children approximately 3,000,000 days. Such are

across the street in groups, and encourage predictions based on accident statistics

them to cross streets only at intersections furnished by the National Safety Council.

which are guarded. The boy guards A New England insurance firm, in a

frown upon jaywalking and report to bulletin bearing the startling title, “Worse

their teacher or principal the names of Than War," announces that “50,510

children who wilfully disobey their members of the American Expeditionary

directions. Forces were killed in action and died of

Upon the approach of an automobile wounds during 18 months of the World

at a street intersection, the patrol boy on War, but a greater number, 50,900 per

duty will hold up his hand to the apsons, met death in automobile accidents

proaching motorist, indicative of his during a recent 18-month period.”

desire to escort a group of children across These predictions and revelations do

the street in safety. After the motorist not furnish a complete picture of the situ

has stopped, children are safely escorted ation, however. Surveys show that 17 per

to the opposite curb. During recess, the cent of all persons injured in motor vehi

patrol prevents boys and girls from runcle mishaps last year in the United States

ning across or playing in the street. (166,600) were under 15 years of age,

Patrol members are dismissed from class and nearly three times as many children

five minutes before class closing hour to between 5 and 14, as those under 5

- Thomas De Verter, Chicago Academy of Fine Arts

go to their stations and remain on duty years of age, were crushed to death by "SAFETY EDUCATION," helps for schools in until 10 minutes after the closing hour. automobiles.

constructing a course of study in safety education, is a
new Office of Education Bulletin (1932 No. 8, price 10

For valor
As student accident information accu-

cents) prepared by Miss Florence C. Fox, specialist in

elementary education. Superintendents, principals, mulates, interest increases in the preven- and teachers should find this publication useful in set

Interest in the patrol movement is tion of accidents to school children. What

ting up school safety education programs. Order from
Superintendent of Documents, Washington, D. C.

stimulated by the awarding of medals and can our schools do to decrease this student

certificates for satisfactory service and for accident and death rate?

boy Safety Patrol, also sponsored by exceptional acts of heroism on the part of

the American Automobile Association school patrol boys while on duty. Last Classroom education helps

and affiliated motor clubs. This protec- year 2,576 merit certificates were awarded The American Automobile Association tion, together with added safety instruc- by the American Automobile Association, is doing much to promote safety educa- tion in the classroom, has been remark- and in the District of Columbia alone 196 tion for school children. With the coop- ably effective. Fewer school child acci- medals were granted for meritorious eration of motorists in 140 affiliated clubs dents take place to-day between home service. Forty-two boys were cited for in various sections of the United States, and school than on the school grounds, the actual saving of lives. this organization supplies approximately or in the school building.

The morale of boy patrols can be in85,000 safety education lessons monthly Safety patrols are organized through creased by cooperation with city policeto American classrooms. Fifty-thousand the cooperation of school officials, police,

In Washington, D. C., the city posters furnished by 157 motor clubs in city officials, the press, and boys them- superintendent of police detailed police 27 States stress safety. Schools ask for selves who anticipate being members of officers from each precinct to supervise posters or lessons from the nearest club the patrols. White Sam Browne belts or patrol operation. The policemen are affiliated with the American Automobile bright-colored felt arm bands, badges to trained in the operation of school-boy Association. The American Automobile denote rank, and poncho-type capes and patrols, and frequently speak in the classAssociation supplies the safety education rain hats for wet weather, are furnished

rooms and school assemblies. One officer, material. to patrol members, who are selected for

John E. Scott, of Precinct No. 2, prepared Since the motor death rate for persons service because of good marks in studies a series of safety slides which have been of all ages advanced 98 per cent from 1922 and qualities of leadership. A patrol

( Continued on page 18)

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Partners or Rivals

Colleges and Universities in Four States Have Just

Joined Hands



LTHOUGH PROFESSORS do So the Winnebago legislature established tuition for all the University of Winnenot

wear headguards and a normal school in Xenia under a separate bago law students to study at a famous deans do not sally forth in board of trustees.

mid-western university and save the State cleated shoes, colleges and Step 3. One normal school was not money. universities often compete in the class- enough, and furthermore two or three

Signboards room field as vigorously, if not as vio other sections of the State felt they had lently; as they do on the football field. just as much right to a normal school as At this puzzling crossroad two sign

Each graduate school strives to be supe Xenia. Therefore, the legislature estab boards have been erected by Dean Elwood rior to approximately 99 other graduate lished three other normal schools under P. Cubberley, historian of education. schools in everything from education to separate boards of trustees.

One sign reads: “The early struggles of archæology. Colleges of agriculture and Step 4. Because the Federal Govern these institutions (of higher learning) at mechanic arts tend to become complete ment would help a State support a land times developed intense loyalties and universities. State teachers colleges, in grant college for agricultural and mechanic animosities, both among students and many cases, are striving to build up arts, Winnebago, about 1877, established communities, which in time led to legisEnglish departments and history depart in Jonesboro the Winnebago Agricultural lative lobbying for appropriations, buildments beyond the point called for by the and Mechanical College.

ings, support, and expansion at times not training of teachers, and strong enough to Step 5. Winnebago gradually built up warranted by actual needs. The result compete with similar departments in State its State department of education be has been conflicts between the land-grant universities.

cause a greater measure of control over colleges and the State universities which This situation has become so serious elementary and secondary education was often have resulted in bitterness of feeling that four States within three years have gradually forced upon the State. It be and intense rivalry in development; in taken steps to consolidate their institu came obvious that if the State board of strife among the normal schools and tions of higher education. Their legis- education were to assume the duty of between them and the universities; at latures have said that competition can insuring a better quality of education for times in

unnecessary duplication of become war, and war is too expensive a all the State's children, then it should instruction and a haphazard development luxury for education. Oregon three years

more direct control over the of institutions; and in the creation of ago, North Carolina a year ago, and preparation of the teachers who were to factional groupings of the people and their Mississippi and Georgia last winter an teach the children. And, furthermore, representatives in the legislature which nounced by law that the State's duties the legislators were becoming weary of have hampered the proper development of in higher education must be performed being button-holed by six or seven college higher and special education within the cooperatively instead of competitively. presidents at every session. So all of State."}

Kentucky, South Carolina, and Cali- Winnebago's normal schools were placed The other sign reads: "Speaking genfornia are studying their publicly sup- under the control of the State board of erally, the best control and the control ported institutions of higher learning education in 1922.

freest from political influences has come under survey microscopes. Other States, Step 6. Although there are no mines in

from local boards of regents or trustees spurred on by the necessities of economy, the State, the University of Winnebago, deeply interested in the development of are considering changes.

in the interests of academic respectability, the particular institution under their care.

established a School of Mines. Winnebago and Xenia

Until centralized boards can be assured

Step 7. Cities were raising require- of freedom from political direction and The accompanying chart shows the ments for teachers so the 2-year normal control, and until they learn to embody status quo in the movement to unify schools became 4-year teachers colleges in their procedures the best forms of corState management of higher education. giving many of the same liberal arts and poration control, universities will be loath It does not show the steps by which the science courses that are given both in

to give up their separate boards of condition charted has been reached. the University of Winnebago and the control.2 We can follow the steps best, perhaps, Winnebago Agricultural and Mechanical

These two signs, although contraby noting the path of higher education in College.

dictory, are nevertheless helpful as warnthe mythical State of Winnebago.

Step 8. The Xenia Teachers College ings to stop, look, and listen. Step 1. The early pioneers of Winnebago has requested and has been granted the

But higher education, like the rest of were loyal patrons of education and soon right to give the master's degree. This

civilization, must

Each State after the settlement of the State estab means that both Xenia and the University must choose the fork in the road along lished, after a bitter legislative battle, of Winnebago will be giving graduate which it will send its institutions of higher the University of Winnebago, which work in education,

education. gave courses that were not nearly as Having taken these eight steps the

Of the four States which have recently advanced nor as adequate as those now State of Winnebago is at the parting of

changed their policies, three-Georgia, given in hundreds of Winnebago high the ways in higher education. Taxpayer Mississippi, and Oregon-have taken the schools. organizations are insisting on economy.

course of consolidating all State instituStep 2. The early pioneers, having also Alumni are resisting coordination or

tions of higher education under the general established 1-room schools, felt the need mergers. The junior college has made its of staffing them with native citizen bid for support. Some captious critics

1 State School Administration by E. P. Cubberley, teachers, instead of importing teachers have stung State pride by pointing out

Boston, Mass., Houghton Millin Co., p. 345. from Connecticut and Massachusetts. that the State could pay the carfare and : Ibid., p. 349.


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