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SCIENTIFIC AND PROFESSIONAL INSTRUCTION.
SCIENTIFIC The State University of Iowa offers in its school of science 2 courses, scientific and engineering, each of 4 years. The scientific course is meant to lay a foundation on which students may build in any special branch of scientific work, and also to meet the demand for thorough preparation for scientific teaching in the high schools. The engineering course, sinilar to the scientific in its general aim, devotes the latter part of its time to engineering science and practice.
The Iowa Agricultural College, Ames, continued in 1883–84 its arrangement of studies under general and technical courses. Under the first is a course in tbe sciences related to industries, which aims to give a fair preparation for the great industries of the country, without especially confining itself to any particnlar pursuit. This being for both sexes, the course is given a considerable degree of flexibility to meet the wants of each. The technical courses, while giving a liberal culture, aim also so to direct it as to meet the requirements of a special pursuit or profession. These courses are: (1) in agriculture ; (2) in mechanical engineering; (3) in civil engineering ; (4) in veterinary science; and (5) in domestic economy. The 2 last mentioned are each of 2 years; the others, of 4 years. These courses are arranged in schools having special faculties. In the department of military science and tactics yonng men are fitted for positions in the State troops as line officers and company instructors. Provision is made for mixed optional and graduate courses and the study of commercial law. French, German, and vocal and instrumental music are taagbt by female instructors. There were 22 - officers of instruction,” 5 of them women, with 252 students in all departments, the graduating class in 1883 being 29, of wbom 13 were women.
The scientific courses of the other colleges vary from 3 to 4 years in doration and in the extent and kind of scientific work done. In 3 instances the courses are slightly varied by Latin and philosophy.
PROFESSIONAL Theology.- No distinctively theological school appears in the State. Theology is taught in 3-year courses at Griswold and German Colleges, in tbe former of which 3 candidates for orders appear in a report for 1884. At Oskaloosa College theological instruction is given in a 4-year course of sacred literature, in indefinite ones at lowa Wesleyan and Simpson Centenary Colleges, in a 2-year Bible course at Drake University, and slightly in the ecclesiastical department at St. Joseph's College.
For statistics of the above, see Table XI of the appendix; for a summary of samo, the report of the Commissioner preceding.
Law. The course of instruction in the law department of the State university, herotofore but one year, now extends over 2 school years of 40 weeks each, the change being reqnired by an act of April 5, 1884. Candidates for graduation, on the passage of a satisfactory examination under the direction of justices of the supreme court of the State, receive diplomas from the regents of the university which admit them to the bar without further examination. Under 4 professors and 4 lecturers there were in 1882-83 120 regular stndents and 6 irregular; in 1883–84, 1.32, all regular.
The lowa College of Law, a department of Drake University, Des Moines, in 1883–84 shows a course advanced from 1 to 2 years, according to the new law, under a faculty of 15 instructors, with 18 students, against 14 in 1872–83. Gradnates receive the de gree of bachelor of laws and are admitted to any court in the State.
The lowa Wesleyan College offers legal instruction under 2 instructors, but its course remains somewhat undefined, and the last report in 1881–82 showed no students.
Keoknk College of Law, Keokuk, presents for 1883–'84 a law course covering 1 year of 40 weeks, with an offer of an extended course after graduation, under 20 instructors. Students in 1882–83, 21, of whom 8 graduated. By the law above referred to, its coorse must in the future cover 2 years to secure the admission of its graduates to the consts. No preliminary examination seems to be required, nor any prior reading of law.
Medicine. "Regular” medical instruction was given in 1882–83 by the medical department of the State university; the College of Physicians and Surgeons, Keokuk; and the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Iowa, Des Moines. Each of the 3 requires some preliminary study, the usual 3 years with a physician, and attendance on 2 full courses of lectures, of 20 weeks each in the first two, of 22 weeks in the third. They continued their instruction through the session of 1883–84 without change.
In the bomeopathic mcdical department of the State nnirrssits special inatriotinn contineal 1111ere the 2 years, with lecturu iermiind represive nedenle is in loco regular xobool.
Lelectie instruction was given in 1822-83 by the Iowa Medical College, a department of Drake Cuiversity, and in 1883-84 also by King Eclectic Medical College, Des Moines, which opened for instruction in 1883. The former requires for admission a good elementary education; for graduation, the usual 3 years' study and 2 lecture courses of 24 weeks each; the latter, no previous preparation, but for graduation 3 years' study, with 2 fall courses of lectures of 20 weeks each, or 2 years' study and 3 courses of lectures, or 4 courses with no previous reading.
Training in veterinary practice continues in one of the courses of the Iowa Agricultural College at Ames. It is the expressed purpose of this school to meet the increas. ing demand for trained veterinary practitioners growing out of the vast stock interests of the West and the enormous losses from sporadic and contagious diseases anong domestic animals. The course of study covers 2 years, under a special faculty of 4 instructors; it includes lectures on the technical and special topics of the course and practice in microscopical and anatomical laboratories and in the veterinary hospital. Candidates for graduation must pass their examinations with the standing required in the other college courses and present a thesis in veterinary science; if successful, they receive the degree of doctor of veterinary medicine.
Dentistry continued to be taught in the State university. Requirements for graduation: Mature age, 2 years of dental study, attendance on 2 lecture courses (apparently of 30 weeks each), the preparation of a satisfactory case of artificial teeth, a practical operation on natural teeth, and the passage of a tinal examination. Matriculates in 1883–84, 31; graduates, 13; teaching faculty, 8, besides 2 special lecturers and 15 clinical instructors.
For statistics of all the above medical schools, see Table XIII of the appendix; for a summary of the same, the report of the Commissioner preceding.
EDUCATION OF THE DEAF AND DUMB. The Iowa Institution for the Deaf and Dumb, Council Bluffs, in 1882–83 gave free instruction to 225 pupils in the common and higher English branches and in the employments of carpentry, broom and dress making, gardening, printing, and shoemaking, all under 18 instructors, besides the president. The institution owned 80 acres of land, which, with buildings, &c., was valued at $200,000. The appropriation from the State for the year was $16,000. Articulation was taught to such as were deemed capable of profiting by it. Whole number of pupils from foundation, 369.
EDUCATION OF THE BLIND. The State also provided for the instruction of the blind in the College for the Blind, Vinton, the branches taught being primary, grammar, and high; the industries, bead work, broom and mattress making, cane seating, and sewing.
In 1883–84 there were 125 pupils enrolled, under 30 instructors and other employés. The estimated value of the buildings, grounds, &c., was $350,000; total receipts, $35,864; expenditures, $31,312.
EDUCATION OF ORPHANS. At the Iowa Soldiers' Orphans' Home and Home for Indigent Children, Davenport, there were 68 soldiers' orphans and 150 county children in 1882–83. Since the opening of the Soldiers' Home, in 1862, there have been received 1,450 orphans, and the department for indigent children since its opening, in 1876, has received 250 of that class. The schools are graded, under 3 teachers, open 9 months in the year, and in session 54 hours a day for 5 days in the week. The boys are instructed in gardening and the girls in general housework and sewing; industrial drawing is taught in all the departments.
TRAINING OF THE FEEBLE-MINDED. The Iowa Institution for Feeble-Minded Children, Glenwood, established in 1876, had 239 children of this class enrolled in 1882–83, to whom were given the elements of a common school education. There were 12 receiving instruction in drawing, and a large number, in plain sewing.
REFORMATORY TRAINING. The State Reform School, with a department for girls at Mitchellville and one for boys at Eldora, undertakes the education, reformation, and industrial training of youth committed to its charge. The children in both departments are required to attend school 4 hours each day of the school months, the boys to receive instruction in bat and shoe making, farming, gardening, and stock raising, and the girls to be trained in general housework.
STATE ASSOCIATION. The Iowa State Teachers' Association beld its twenty-eighth annual meeting at Des Moines, December 26-28, 1883, with an enrolment of 435 members. the number being greater than ever before and larger by 160 than in 1892. The address of Colonel Parker, of the Cook County Normal School, Illinois, entitled “Learning to do by doing," was listened to with much interest. He said that one advantage of these associations was the inspiration given and received ; teachers would discover a wonderful unity in their work; what we call now is really very old. He showed the ways in which thought may be expressed and the advantage of originality or self activity, and closed by saying that character should be made the aim of all education. A system of school savings banks was discussed at length, but without leading apparently to any definite conclusion. President Klinefelter, in his official address, suggested “that four weeks of attendance on institutes be compulsory as to teachers holding second and third grade certificates, and that teachers be allowed pay while attending institutes; that the work of rural districts be concentrated on a few essentials, and that elementary didactics be made a study to be taught at the request of pupils of a certain age." Addresses and papers followed on "Ăn outsider's view of what is lacking in our public schools," "The money value of a college education," “ What constitutes a practical education,"
," “School government,” “What can reasonably be expected from the schools,” and “Addition to and subtraction from our education.” The last subject was a discussion of spelling reform, classics vs. science, morals in the schools, &c. A special feature of the meeting was the presence of most of the college presidents and many of the members of the faculties. A now constitution was adopted at the beginning of the session.
CHIEF STATE SCHOOL OFFICER.
(Second term, January 7, 1884, to January 4, 1886.]
a Three counties pot reporting. (From fourth biennial report, by Hon. H. C. Speer, superintendent of public instruction, for the two years named.)
STATE SCHOOL SYSTEM.
GENERAL CONDITION. The statistics given in the biennial report of the State superintendent, though indicating fair progress since 1882, are to some extent imperfect, as of 6,706 organized districts in 1884 579 failed to report, of which number 440 are said to have bad no school. Wbile this shows neglect of duty by some district officers, the statistics india cate efficient school work in the main. While the percentage of enrolment to school population fell off, that of average attendance to enrolment and of average attend. ance to school youth materially advanced.
The snperintendent says that the treakness of the school csatom lins in 1!: iren Jucendere il sinets. The number tailing to sport schools in 1080 ; Ilam.. 40; iu 1886, 440, or I district in every 13. 110 suggests two remedies: (1) Tbat the State, by general tas, afford such support us will give at least 3 months' school iu every district, such tax to be divided, not on population, but by giving each district a stated sum, say, $75, and coupling this appropriation with a requirement that a similar amount as a minimum be raised by the district; (2) organize the State on the townsbip plan. In this way taxes would be equalized and every community would be provided with at least some term of school, as contemplated by the constitution of the State. Some limit, it is thought, should also be put to the power of county officers to form districts that cannot perform their functions.
The school term for the two years has averaged in the State but twenty-three weeks. The superintendent urges that, as the State grows in wealth, there should be a corresponding increase in the length of term till it reaches nine months a year.
There has been a gratifying improvement in the supervision of schools, as the result of the law of 17€ 1 requiring visitation and inspection of schools by county officers. This is seen in the large increase of attendance, as already indicated. The standard of teaching has also been raised during this period, under the influence of normal schools, normal institutes, county associations, county superintendency, and examining boards.
The figures in regard to school buildings show a marked advance in good new buildings, these in many cases taking the place of old ones less suitable to the need of the district.
ADMINISTRATION. For the State and connty there is a superintendent of public instruction elected biennially by the people; for school districts, a board of 3 members elected for 3 years, with annual change of 1. For examining applicants for State diplomas there is a State board of education ; for examining teachers in counties there are associated with the county superintendent 2 holders of first grade certificates, each to serve 1 year; for the care of the State school funds there is a board of commissioners, consisting of tbe State superintendent, secretary of state, and attorney general. Women may vote and hold school offices.
The public system embraces primary, grammar, high, and normal schools, a State Agricultural College, a State university, and schools for the deaf and dumb, for the blind, and a reform school. No sectarian teaching is allowed in any of these, but the reading of the Bible without note or comment is not prohibited. For the improvement of teachers annual county institutes are provided for, supported by an appropriation pot to exceed $100 to each one, made by the board of county commissioners, and by funds received from those atiending and those examined for certificates.
These certificates are of first, second, and third grades, and continue in force 2 years, 1 year, and 6 months. Teachers are required to report to county superintendents and they to the State superintendent. The State treasurer is also required to report semiannually to the State superintendent the amount of school money in the treasury subject to disbursement. Uniformity in text books is required. All public schools are free to cbildren from 5 to 21 years of age, and those from 8 to 14 are by law required to attend at least 12 weeks in each year, unless excused by school authorities or taught elsewhere.
SCHOOL FINANCES. The poblic schools are supported from the proceeds of all lands granted by the United States, including 500,000 acres given to new States under act of September 4, 1841, and also sections 16 and 36 in every township, granted by act of January 29, 1861; from estates of those dying without beir or will; from such per cent. as may be granted by Congress on the sale of lands in the State; from a yearly tax of 1 mill on $1; and from an annual fee of $50 paid by every insurance company doing business in the State. This income is distribnted annually, by order of the State superintendent, to the county treasurers, and thence to the district treasurers, in proportion to the childreo and youth of school age (5–21). For the support of a State university, 72 sections of land were reserved.
NEW LEGISLATION. The only changes in school laws that have been noted since the last report are (1) a permission to boards of education in cities of the second class to raise their annual school tax levy from 8 mills on $1 to 10 mills; (2) a permission to boards of directors in cities of the third class to raise the limitation regarding bonds issued to erect or purchase school-houses from 5 to 6 per cent. of the taxable property.
The committee on education of the Kansas State Grange, in its report for 1884, holds that in the district scbools there is still too much memorizing, too many studies requiring abstract reasoning, and too much straining of the powers of pupils by study of rules and principles beyond their grasp. In place of this it urges that there should be more ohject teaching, acquainting children with the forms and modes of life around them and life in every form throughout the world that the study of Dumbers sboald be iu connection with familiar objects of definite
dimensions and with materials that enter into domestic economy; that quicknres and incurar's should lor inde ad by epercar in particul compatation relatiay lu sach objecia, and that w such cacrtises ibas sludy sluuld be contineu i live pary grader