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The exercises of the Institute commenced at the Presbyterian Church, in the village of Eau Claire, on Monday evening, October 31. In the ahsence of Chancellor Barnard, Prof. C. H. Allen delivered a short address, explaining the objects of Teachers' Institutes, and showing the necessity of more thorough preparation on the part of teachers to fulfill the duties of their calling. Prof. Allen was followed by A. J. Craig, Esq., editor of the Wisconsin Journal of Education, in an address upon the subject “What should a system of Public Instruction effect, and what kind of a system is required ?” which was replete with valuable suggestions as to reforming and perfecting our common school system, and was continued upon another evening.
The exercises of each day consisted in drilling the teachers present on the various branches taught in our schools, with an exposition of the different methods of teaching, and discussions, as to the best means of imparting instruction, and upon questions raised in relation to the regulation and government of schools. The evenings were chiefly devoted to discussions and lectures on the subject of education. During the session “ The Chippewa Valley Teachers' Association” was organized, of which W. W. Allen was elected President, and Roderick Elwell, Secretary. The Institute closed on Friday evening, at which time the following resolutions were unanimously adopted:
Resolved, Thut we, teachers, citizens and friends of education, feeling deeply interested in the improvement of schools in our vicinity, tender our sincere thanks to Messrs. Allen and Craig for the zeal and ability with which they have conducted the exercises of this Institute, and the interest they have imparted to them; that the instructions we have received will ever be cherished by us, and will stimulate us to assist in ele rating the standard of our public schools, and in discharging the duties which may devolve upon us as parents and teachers, with greater care and fidelity.
Resolved. That our time has been pleasantly and profitably spent during our stay here, and that we consider Teeachers' Iostitutes as among the best means for quali. fying ourselves for our vocation, and for promoting the efficiency of our common school system.
Resolved, That it is the earnest desire of the teachers of the Chippewa Valley that the advantages of a Teachers' Institute may again be afforded them at an early day, and that they will return to participate in similar exercises with increased numbers, and with renewed zeal.
Resolved, That we consider the Journal of Education, the organ of the Department of Public Instruction, a valuable work, and one which should be sustained by all who purpose to follow teaching as a profession, or who are interested in the great and noble work of educating the young.
Resolved, That as the members of this Iostitute are in a very great degree indebted for the privileges we have enjoyed, to the efforts of our worthy friend and citizen, S. H. Peabody, we tender him our sincere thanks, and regard him as a true man and lover of education.
Resolved, That we hereby tender our thanks to the citizens of Eau Claire and vicinity for the generous hospitality with which we have been entertained during the session of the Institute.
BOARD OF NORMAL SCHOOL REGENTS.
Madison, Nov. 22, 1859. The Board met, pursuant to a call signed by three members of the Board.
Minutes of the meeting of June 22 read and approved.
A draft of the Annual Report of the Board to the Governor was read, and adopted, and ordered to be considered as the Report of the Board, when completed.
The Report of the Committee on the Course of Study, which was made at the last meeting, was called up, and the course recommended was approved and adopted.
The Board then listened to the outlines of the plans of Dr. Barnard, Agent of the Board, for future operations, and this plan was approved, and was ordered to be attached to the Annual Report, when the Agent should have it written out.
Mr. Bean offered the following resolution, which was adopted:
Resolved, That the plan of operations for the Agency of this Board, presented by Dr. Barnard in his report of this dato, be approved.
SILAS CHAPMAN, Secretary.
The following was the course of study adopted:
First Year-Higher Arithmetic, Algebra, Latham's English Language, or any similar standard work on the same subject, Plane and Solid Geometry, Drawing, Anglo Saxon Roots and Derivations, Chemistry, Theory and Practice of Teaching.
Second Year-Trigonometry and Surveying, Botany, Physiology, Natural Philosophy, Geology and Meteorology, Rhetoric, Physical Geography, Astronomy, Theory and Practice of Teaching.
Third Year-Constitutional History, Latin, French or German, Comparative Philology, Logic, Intellectual Philosophy, Analytical Geometry, Calculus, Descriptive Geometry, Drawing, Educational History.
OPINIONS, &C., FROM THE OFFICE OF THE STATE SUPERINTENDENT.
(Continued from the November Number.)
POWERS AND DUTIES OF OFFICERS,
Q. If a district neglects to hold its annual meeting, and all the offices become vacant from removal, resignation, or other causes, does the district, by such neg. lect. become disorganized ?
A. A district never loses its organization beyond recovery, except by the action of the Town Superintendent. In such a case as above snpposed, it is the duty of the Town Superintendent to call a special meeting for the election of officers, In case such a meeting is held, personal notice must be served upon every qualified voter in such district. (See Sections 2, 3, 13, and comments thereon, in School Code, 1859.)
Q. In case the Town Treasurer ignorantly paid all the money he had collected into the County Treasury, and the County Treasurer refuses to pay anything but county orders, what remedy has the district ?
A. The Town Superintendent has no legal authority to receive anything but money for school taxes, and he is not obliged to receive county orders from the County Treasurer ; but, although it is very questionable whether the County Treasurer could refuse to refund moneys illegally paid him, it would in most cases be advisable for the districts to take county orders, and suffer a little loss, than to become involved in a lawsuit, where they will certainly be put to considerable expense. The legal remedy is against the Town Treasurer.
Q. Can the apportionment of any year be used in payment of teachers any previous year?
A. Certainly. The law only requires that the public moneys be paid to quali fied teachers, and does not specify in what year, or for what year the service was rendered, or the payment made. It would be more creditable to districts, certainly, to pay first the claims of longest standing.
Q. In case the Clerk is absent for more than ten days, succeeding the election what course should the Treasurer take to have his bond approved and filed ?
4. The bond should be perfected and approved by the Director, and left at the house of the Clerk, with a memorandum of the date made upon it by some member of the family of the Clerk, and when the Clerk returns he should file it at that
date. Every one who has had a deed recorded 'will remember that this is the course almost universally followed.
Q. Can a Town Superintendent annex territory from his town to a joint district without the co-operation of the other Superintendents interested ?
A. He cannot, as the addition of territory is equally an alteration with taking away territory. Whenever the boundaries of a joint district are in any manner changed, it must be by the joint action of the Superintendents of all the towns which in part compose the district.
Q. What remedy has the town if the Town Superintendent refuses to visit the schools under his charge ?
A. The law makes it the duty of the Town Superintendent to visit all the schools in his town at least once during his term of office. The bond of this officer is conditioned upon the faithful discharge of all the duties of his office, of which duties this is one, and by no means an unimportant one, and a failure or a refusal to attend to this duty would probably render him liable to an action on his bond, (See Sections 44, 60, 61, and page 103, School Code, 1859 )
Q. What constitutes a quorum to do business at the annual district meeting?
A. The law fixes no number which shall constitute a quorum. Therefore two persons may meet and legally transact the business of the annual meeting. But in all cases it would be advisable to adjourn the meeting to a time when more will probably meet.
Q. If the Director and Clerk receive the Treasurer's bond, and make no objec. tion to approving it, can they, after the ten days allowed by law have expired, reject it?
A, They can not. They must refuse to file it at once, or return it in time for the Treasurer to execute and file a new one within the time allowed by law. Any such reception of the bond will be held tantamount to approval, and the officers will be required to approve it at the date of reception.
Q. In making his financial report required by law, how shall the Clerk obtain the necessary figures, as the Treasurer does not make his report until nearly a month afterwards ?
A. He should be guided by the Treasurer's books, and not by the former annual report.
Q. In case a Treasurer refuses to make an annual report, what remedy has the district ?
A. The Treasurer renders himself liable to a fine of ten dollars for any such neglect or refusal, which fino may be recovered before a justice of the peace. (See Section 88, School Code, 1859.)
Q. If the Director and Treasurer hire a teacher, is the contract binding upon the district.
A. In no case. The only contract that can bind the district is one signed by the Clerk in behalf of the district, and countersigned by the Director or Treasurer. All contracts not thus signed are void.
APPORTIONMENT, ETC. Q. In case of the division of a district, as contemplated in section 54, School Law, after the annual report is made, and before the apportionment is made, what shall fix the date of the apportionment ?
A. The date of the certificate to the State Treasurer by the State Superintend. ent, as on that day the money will be subject to draft. It is perfectly plain that it cannot be the date of the reception of the money by the Town Superintendent, as this would, in effect, fix no certain date whatever, but leave all to chance. The date of the certificate of the State Superintendent in 1859 was March 23d, and districts formed from organized districts subsequent to that date will not be entitled to any share of the apportionment made in 1859.
S. H. CARPENTER, Assistant State Superintendent.
A Large part of the present number is devoted to an account of the series of Teachers' Institutes, set on foot by the Board of Normal Regents, and held under the general direction of Dr. Barnard, their Agent, assisted by other competent gentlemen. We have no space for extended comments or remarks upon them, and can only state that they have been largely attended, have been marked by an increase of interest from the opening to the closing of each one, and have done an amount of good in arousing the public, in presenting new and better modes of teaching, in inspiring teachers with new zeal and determination to succeed in their work, that could have been accomplished in no other manner; and our readers will be glad to learn, by the proceedings of the Board of Normal Regents, published in another place, that the work is to be continued next year on a wider basis, so as to reach all parts of the State. We trust that something will be done the coming session of the Legislature to place more funds at the disposal of the Board, as we believe that it will not only be wisely and judiciously expended, but that the same amount of good can be done in no other way.
We give this month the conclusion of Mr. Pickett's series of articles on "The Honor of Our Calling," etc., and commend them as abounding in important truths and valuable suggestions bearing upon the great work of Education. In this connection we also wish to recommend Dwight's "Higher Christian Education," (noticed in its proper place) as the ablest work with which we are acquainted, treating of a true education in its broadest sense, and developed from the idea of a Supreme Being, and our relations to Him.