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Superintendent's Department.


pared for their work. On the score of economy, no one, who, for a moment, will

consider the operation of schools classiLETTER OF J. L. PICKARD.

fied, as compared with the present sys

tem of unclassified nondescripts, can PLATTEVILLE ACADEMY,

doubt the importance of a thorough graJuly 23, 1855.

dation of our public schools. And how Hon. A. C. Barry, State Superintend- can any school be elevated, in which all ent of Public Instruction.

grades of scholars are crowded together Dear Sir: I have the honor to ac- under the direction of one teacher? As knowledge the receipt of your favor of well may one expect to find a dwelling the 13th inst., in which you propose the well completed and thoroughly furnished following question:

under the superintendence of a stone ma“Would the interests of Education in son alone, though he did not stand at the a State be enhanced by a legislative pro- head of his craft, as a well-disciplined and vision for uniting townships and incorpo- thoroughly furnished mind coming from rated villages, for the purpose of organ- a school taught by the best primary izing Union and Central High Schools ?” school teacher in the world, or the best

It is evident that the interests of popu- high school teacher even. jar education are advanced by anything Minds of different degrees of advancethat tends to elevate the common school, ment require different methods of instrucand leads to a wise and economical ex- tion and discipline, not practiced with penditure of the school monies. That equal success by the same teacher, nor the system of classified schools, including carried out to their fullest development all grades from the primary to the high under the same roof. It seems useless to schools, is the best adapted to secure this spend time in illustrating what must comelevation and economical expenditure, mend itself to any thinking mind as reaneeds no illustration, except with such sonable and absolutely essential to sucas have no practical knowledge of its cess. The only question that remains is workings, or have bestowed no thought -How can this be best accomplished ?upon its reasonableness. All desire the In reply to this, we cannot go back to stability and permanence of our common years previous to any school organizaschool system. But what security has tions; we must look at things as they at any state that it will be permanent, ex- present exist. Had no organization of cept in provision for the training of those school districts been effected, it would who are its main support—the teachers? evidently be proper to start at the founAnd where, in our unclassified schools, dation, and build up a system in our own are we to look for those who will rise far townships, which, without special legislaenough above the common level to be- tion, could be perfected as circumstances come competent guides for the young ?- demanded. And in townships not yet To provide teachers, private schools must organized, or where school edifices have be established at an outlay far exceeding not yet been erected, our present school the extra expense of well classified schools law admits of such an organization as which may in their higher departments shall serve the purposes of union schools furnish teachers for the lower, fully pre- and high schools. There are however,


many incorporated villages in townships LETTER OF SAMUEL S. RANDALL. which, through blindness or carelessness, have in their haste to erect school houses

City SUPERINTENDENT'S OFFICE, and organize schools, followed in the

New York, July 20, 1855. track of their ancestors, and are now laboring to retrace their steps. Dificul. Hon. A. C. Barry, Superintendent of

Public Instruction, Wisconsin. ties which have been constantly increas

Dear Sir: I have the honor to acing, stand as mighty obstacles in their way. To meet the necessities of such, it knowledge the receipt of your communi

cation of the 9th inst., requesting my seems to me a legislative provision might be made, by which such villages might,

views in reference to the expediency and by erecting suitable buildings, accommo

utility of a legislative provision for uni. date with high school privileges other ting townships and incorporated villages districts adjoining, whether in the same

for the purpose of organizing Union and township or not, leaving to each village

Central High Schools. the making of such contract as would

In my judgment, such a provision wo'd best suit the circumstances of the parties

be eminently adapted to advance the ininterested. Except in the villages, the

terests of common school instruction.present organization would not be inter- Our own experience in this state, under fered with, and might supply the place

a law very inartificially drawn up, emof primary and intermediate departments. bracing as its leading feature this princiNo special legislation which would suit ple, has fully demonstrated the practical one locality would be desirable, because efficiency of such an enactment, even

when the minor details failed to give full it opens the way for endless special acts.

effect to the intention of the legislature. But a general act, which would allow the union of districts for high school purposes

In the case of villages and well populated - and even for the lower grades, if tho't townships, there can be no doubt of the desirable,) and should make such union advantages of the system, concentrating,

as it does all the mental and material endependent upon the fulfillment of any contracts they might see fit to make, not ergies of the inhabitants upon the supinconsistent with said act, is highly de-port of a good school, well furnished with sirable, and I doubt not would contribute all the necessary appliances for system. greatly to the advancement of the public

atic and scientific instruction. And in schools of the state.

the rural districts or townships, even Your obedient servant,

where a sparse population exists, I am J. L. PICKARD.

convinced its effect would prove decided

ly beneficial. The prevailing system of COLBERT, the famous French Minister, separate school districts, however adyanat sixty years of age, returned to his Lat- tageous in the incipient movements and in and law studies. How many of our first organization of a school system, lacollege-learned men have ever looked into bors under the serious defects of a want their classics since their graduation ?

of adequate supervision, and the absence

of a hearty, vigorous, systematic and uniOGILBY the translator of Homer and Vir- ted co-operation of the whole community gil, was unacquainted with Latin and in one common effort for the advancement Greek till he was past fifty.

and improvement of its educational facil

ities. These defects are effectually reme- isolated districts. The supervision wo’u died by the union and central system. be far more thorough and complete—the

A legislative provision authorizing, and public interest in the progress and adas far as may be, encouraging the union vancement of the system, more direct and of any two or more adjoining school dis- palpable—the private interest of parents tricts, in each township with the assent better provided for, and the interest and of a majority of the legal voters, parents exertions of the pupils of every grade and tax payers, with power to form a per

inore absorbing. Such at least is our manent board of education, consisting of experience, wherever the system has been representatives (two or more,) from each fairly tried. I do not hesitate, therefore, district, (which for this purpose and an

to recommend it to your carnest considother to which I am about to advert cration, and that of the legislature and should retain its original organization), people of Wisconsin. and to impose the necessary taxes for the

Very respectfully yours,

SAMUEL S. RANDALL, support of the school : with power also

City Sup. N. Y. Pub. Schools. to such board to estab'ish and maintain primary schools in each original district Do Good.— Thousands of men breathe, for the instruction of children under ten move and live-pass off the stage of life, or twelve years of age, preparatory to and are heard of no more. Why? They their transfer at a suitable period to the do not a particle of good in the world, and central or high school, and from thence none were blessed by them, none could on the completion of the prescribed point to them as the instrument of their course of instruction, to a county free redemption; not a word they spoke could academy, to be supported by county tax- be recalled, and they perished; their light ation, aided by such funds as the state went out in darkness, and they were not night be induced to grant; the whole remembered more than the insect of yessystem to be completed by a Free State terday. Will you thus live and die, O College or University of the highest man inmortal? Live for something. Do grade. Such a provision, carefully and good and leave behind you a monument judiciously guarded in its several details, of virtue that the storm of time can never so as to accomplish, with the least pos- destroy. Write your name in kindness, sille infringement upon individual or col- love and mercy on the hearts of thousands lective interests or rights, the great object you come in contact with year by year; of a thorough and complete and practical you will never be forgotten. No, your education, common and iree to all, acces- name, your deeds, will be as legible on sible to all, in all its stages, and equal in the hearts you leave behind, as the stars all respects to that of institutions of a on the brow of evening. Good deeds similar grade elsewhere, would, it strikes will shine as the stars of heaven. Dr. me, be not only eminently useful and Chalmers. successful, but generally acceptable to

TEACHER'S GUIDE TO ILLUSTRATION, a Manall classes, and especially to the friends ual to accompany Holbrook's School Apparaof education, It would likewise be tus. After a somewhat hasty examination of found, I apprehend upon experiment, far this work, our opinion is that teachers will more effective than the existing system find it useful. The hints it contains will maof separate, and to a considerable extent, terially aid young teachers in illustrating the

facts of Philosophy.

TEACHERS' INSTITUTES. Geography; in the classification of schools: in

vocal music :-together with observations on the best methods of tenching each branch intro

duced. It is well, also, at the close of an exThe attention of County Associations is cal-ercise, to call upon some member of the Instiled to the importance of making early arrange- tute to take the stand and suggest a new and ments for Institutes the coming fall, se

that better method if he has one. After that, let sufficient notice of the time and place of meet

the whole subject be thrown open for general ing may be given, an efficient corps of Teach discussion and remark, giving each mernher an ers provided, and the programme of exercises opportunity to express his or her views, and to for the Session made up and distributed. make such inquiries as may be suggested. For the information of any who may be un

Of those who are known to me as well qualiinformed, and also in suggesting some items in fied to take charge of the Institutes, and to conthe preliminary arrangements. I will here ruet them properly, I would name for the in state, in the language of another, that “A formation of all concerned. Jno. G. McMunn, Teachers' Institute is a meeting composed of of Racine, Jno. G. McKinley. Kenosha, Dr. teachers of Common Schools, assembled for the Jas. H. Magoffin and Griffith, Waukesba, purpose of improvement in the studies they are J. L. Pickard, Platteville, W. C. Dustin. Beloit, to teach, and in the principles by which they W. H. Collins, Janesville. A. C. Spicer, Milton, are to govern. It is the design of a Teachers' W. Van Ness, Fond du Lac, W.'P. Bartlett, Instituto to bring together those who are ac. Watertown. J. E. Munger, Waupun,

Picktually engaged in teaching Common Schools, ett. Oshkosh, Abbott, Portage City. D. Y. or who propose to become so, in order that Kilgore, Madison. There are undoubtedly they may be formed into classes, and that those many others whose names I have not. In each classes, under able instructors, may be exer- county, I doubt not, will be found those quali. cised, questioned and drilled. Thus, during fied to give instruction in the several branches their attendance on the Institute, the future before an Institute. teachers become scholars, They are expected As eminently qualified to instrurt in Vocal to prepare and recite lessons, in the same way Music, I mention Prof. Webster and H. B. Coo, they would expect their own scholars to do.---of Racine, and W. H. H. Webster. of Elkhorn. Under competent instructors, they are to be initiated into the bost modes and proce-ses of during a portion of the session of the several

So far as I may be able, I shall be present teaching and governing, which they are after. Institutes that may be appointed. In order wards to illustrate and exemplify in their own that I may be present at any considerable schools. As far as time will allow, they are to number, however, they must overlap in time. be instructed in regard to the organization of

A. CONSTANTINE BARRY, schools, the classification of scholars, and some

Supt. Pub. Inst. of the more obvious and important of the principles and rules which constitute the science and art of teaching. Arringements are also made for the delivery of lectures, during a por.

We cannot associate long and intimatetion of the evenings of the session, on subjects ly with others without becoming assimiconnected with Common School instruction."

lated. Almost imperceptibly, their tho'ts It is customary for the inhabitants of the and feelings influence us, and to how place in which Institutes are held, to furnish board to teachers gratis. Accommodations great an exter.t, perhaps we are not conought to be provided beforehand by the proper scious. It becomes us then, as teachers, committee.

to look well to our associates and assoEach teacher should come to the Institute furnished with the following articles or equip ciations, for not only are we influenced ments :-Fifth Reader, Geography, and Atlas, by them, but through us hundreds are Dictionary, Slate and pencil, pen, ink and paper, and a small blank book,

also influenced. Would we have those Ás we have no state appropriations in aid of under our charge, pure and worthy, we Inetitutes, a small tuition fee may be required must first be made so. And how can we in payment of those who attend as instructors.

It may be of importance to state here, that become so without deriving access to the the time of each day's session should be occu- fount of purity ? A teacher's soul sho'd pied in giving and receiving instruction in

be filled with the love of the beautiful Reading, embracing especially correct pronunciation and enunciation; in writing, commen- and how shall it be more fully developed cing with its elements; in Orthography: in than by communing with Him whose the laws of Language, and in critical grammar; in the fundamental rules of Arithmetic; in character is all beauty. Will not He

who is the greatest teacher, give us of fant, or watching with a mother's anxiety His spirit if we only ask? One hour's the restless steps of their little ones—as I communion with God greatly purifies and hear from my own home the welcome elevates, and as the body droops and de- word “ Father," uttered by lips already cays without nourishment, so will the past the lisping prattler's age-as I renobler faculties of the mind. As we ac- cognise in the forms and features of the knowledge a perfect development of the young men and women before me, the teacher, so will we acknowledge the ne- boys and girls of '46-as I notice with cessity of prayer. That all good ema- what pride those, who were then the nates from Him who reigns, we all allow, fathers and mothers, now reply to the and how shall we direct others to that names, "Grandpa and Grandma,”—as I which is true, noble and good, if our

miss from our assembly the “flourishing souls do not bask in the rays of the Liv- Almond tree" which shaded the brows of ing Light. As we commune with God, such as Mitchell, Clark and Sewell, who we become more like Him; we make now sleep sweetly near us, and welcome “His thoughts our thoughts,” and as we

to their places others by two generations are like Him so are others. The influ- their juniors—as the groves about, the ence of a teacher who renders his obe- dwellings within this village, and more dience to a Supreme Being cannot be especially the inhabitants of these dweltraced till the heart can be read and lings, silently speak of great changesknown of all men, What inducements

the truth is forced upon my mind— Ten have we not then to become prayerful Years is not too much. Though I feel it teachers ? Let our thoughts often rise not in myself, I am compelled to feel it like fumes of sacred incense, o'er the in others. What better theme to occupy clouds, and wasted thence on angel's our attention for a few minutes than that wings thro’ ways of light to the bright of “ourselves in the past and the preshaven of all.


Of the nine Trustees who composed STATISTICAL REPORT,

the Board in 1846, one only, Rev. J, Lewis, remains until the present. Let it not

be supposed, however, that ingratitude to READ BY J. L. PICKARD, PRIN. OF PLATTE- those who stood by us in our weakness is VILLE ACADEMY, AT THE LATE DECENNIAL

the occasion of such & change. The Golden Fever cut down our Vineyard,

removed our Stone and carried off even To-day eloses the tenth year of my con- the Doctor himself. The Lone Star of nection with the Platteville Academy.- Texas attracted an important portion of Upon this decennial anniversary I greet our travelling department—the Shinn.you, old friends and new, with the warmth Connecticut now witnesses the sparkling of a growing attachment for my work of our Eddy-while another was too and your society. Ten years. It seems much of an Eastman to resist the tempnot so long since first I came among you tation held out by the city of Brotherly alone, a stranger in a strange land. But Love. Death holds one in his fast emas I see before me those, who, in their braco-one only remains in our midst. childhood and early youth listened to my In the Department of Instruction there instruction, now soothing to sleep the in- have been associated with myself thirteen

A. J. U.


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