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The administrative and clerical work of the department is classified under divisions, as follows: Accounts, compulsory attendance, examinations, inspections, law, records, statistics. The heads of divisions are called “chiefs," unless otherwise indicated, and are appointed on the nomination of the commissioner and confirmation by the board. Such work as is carried on directly by the department, rather than through schools, is included under libraries and home education, and State science work.
The head of the libraries and home education division is called “ director," und · the operations and work of this division are under the immediate supervision of the commissioner. The division includes the State library, the Library School, the administration or aid of town, school, and other libraries, including the supervision of all agencies for promoting study and culture outside of teaching institutions.
The head of the science work division is called " director of science work" and of the State museum. The work of this division is likewise under the commissioner's immediate supervision. It includes the work of the State geologist, paleontologist, entomologist, and botanist, and the charge of the State scientitic collections.
The head of the division of accounts is called the “ cashier,” who is required to give a bond approved by the comptroller for the proper discharge of his duties. In addition to keeping all financial accounts he is charged with the management of the business affairs of the department, and with the care and proper espenditure of all moneys received.
The administration of the compulsory education law is lodged in the compulsory attendance division.
The examinations division includes the entire public examination system of the State, comprising the examinations of pupils in the schools with reference to their advancement, the examination of all candidates for certificates as teachers, and the examination of candidates for admission to the professions.
The inspections division contains twelve inspectors, and includes the inspection of the elementary, secondary, and higher institutions of the State as to methods and efficiency of instruction, equipment, sanitary conditions, etc,
The law division answers all inquiries made informally as to the provisions and meaning of the school laws, and has charge of all appeals from the acts of local school officials which are taken on formal pleadings to the commissioner, and on which his decision is final and can not be called in question in the courts. This distinctive feature of the New York system has been in operation for three-quarters of a century and provides a court for settling school controversies speedily, inexpensively, and conclusively.
The records division has charge of all permanent records of the department, and all data bearing on the history of education in the State.
The statistics division compiles the annual reports from the elementary, secondary, and higher institutions, and apportions all school moneys.
Under the professional laws of the State, boards of examiners are provided in medicine, dentistry, veterinary medicine, certified public accountants, and nurses, in connection with the work of the department.
The annual apportionment of school moneys affects erery public school in the State of elementary and secondary grade, and is made with special reference to aiding the weak rural districts. These moneys are derived from three sourcesthe free school fund, raised by taxation, and so much of the income of the United States deposit fund, and so much of the income of the common school fund as may be appropriated, it being provided by statute that all moneys so apportioned, except the library moneys, shall be applied exclusively to the payment of teachers' wages. In apportioning the school moneys the commissioner
is required, first, to set aside a sum to pay the salaries of school commissioners, who are local officers in rural districts, chosen by popular vote and serving for a term of three years, $1,000 per annum each; then such sum for library moneys as shall be appropriated for that purpose. The balance is apportioned as follows: To each city, $800; to each village and union school district with a population of 5,000 or more, which employs a superintendent of schools devoting his entire time to supervision, $800; for contingent fund, not more than $10,000; to each school district having an assessed valuation of $10,000 or less, and to each Indian reservation for each teacher, a quota of $150, and to each of the remaining districts and to each of the cities in the State, $125, this apportionment being known as a “district quota ;" to each district or city, for each additional qualified teacher, $100, this apportionment being known as a " teacher's quota.” (In order to receive a “ teacher's quota ” a district must present verified evidence that a duly licensed teacher has taught therein at least one hundred and sixty days in the school year.) The balance is apportioned to the sereral counties on the basis of population. The apportionment is certified to the county clerk, the county treasurer, school commissioners, and city treasurer, or chamberlain in every county in the State. The school commissioners of each county thereupon meet and reapportion the money in accordance with the instructions of the commissioner of education, dividing the amount which has been apportioned to each county on the basis of population among the several districts therein on the basis of aggregate attendance. Having made their apportionment, the school commissioners certify the same to the treasurer of the county and the commissioner of education, and to the supervisor of each town the amount of school moneys apportioned to liis town, the supervisor being required to give his bond for at least double the amount of school moneys so apportioned for the faithful disbursement, safe-keeping, and accounting for such moneys and all other school moneys that may come into his hands from any other source.
No person can teach in the public schools of the State without a license, and the State maintains an elaborate system for the training and certification of teachers, as follows: First, a normal school system, comprising 1 normal college and 11 normal schools, the first named being a degree-conferring institution and all of them, upon the completion of one of the prescribed courses of study, issuing certificates to teach for life in the State; second, training schools for the preparation of teachers in the various cities of the State, carried on under State supervision and with State aid, with a course covering two years, upon completion of which course a certificate to teach is issued for three years, renewable for ten years; third, training classes in the high schools and union schools of rural districts of the State, maintained under State supervision and with State aid, the course of study being one year, upon the completion of which a certificate is issued to teach for three years, renewable for five years; fourth, a graded system of teachers' examinations for the rural districts, known as the “uniform’ examinations, so graded that applicants for the profession must begin at the lower grade, and in order to remain in the profession must gradually earn the certificates of the higher grades. The certificates are valid for different lengtlis of time, depending upon the scope of the examination. These examinations are prepared by the staff of the education department and conducted by local school authorities throughout the State, and papers are returned for correction and rating in the State department of education, which issues the certificates.
A system of teachers' institutes is maintained throughout the State by a competent corps of instructors, an institute being held in every commissioner district in the State each year lasting one week. The system is being gradually extended to the cities, wherein, however, at this time the holding of institutes is optional, whereas in the rural districts it is obligatory. Lectures are given
on pedagogical subjects. Attendance upon the part of teachers is obligatory, the penalty for failure to attend without valid reasons being the revocation of the teacher's certificate. The attendance upon teachers' institutes is counted in the required number of days to be taught, and the law provides for the payment of teachers' wages for institute week.
The educational exhibit of the State of New York was prepared with the hearty cooperation of all of the educational interests of the State. The movement was inaugurated at a meeting of the State Teachers' Association held at Saratoga in July, 1902, at which a resolution was offered inviting the various educational associations in the State to cooperate with the above association in arousing interest and obtaining funds for making an exhibit commensurate with the State's educational importance at the St. Louis Exposition. An immediate response was received from the administrative departments of the State and from each of 10 powerful educational associations, who each sent a representative to a so-called conference committee." This committee succeeded in obtaining the requisite funds from the commission appointed by the governor to represent the State at St. Louis and the appointment of a director for the exhibit. The matter was presented at every educational meeting of importance during the year 1903, and that fact, in conjunction with the circulars sent tbroughout the State, aroused a widespread interest in the project. The exhibit was collected, systematically arranged, and mounted in the office of the director at Rochester, N. Y., the entire expense of its preparation and transportation being borne by the State, with the exception of the binding of written work and small incidental expenses, which were borne by local school authorities. Full instructions were forwarded to local authorities as to the preparation of work, amount of material desired, and the proposed plan of arrangement. To the latter, which is described below, objection was raised on the part of one or two cities, but it was generally considered that while the arrangement made no concession to local pride, it was the wisest arrangement to follow in an exposition of international scope. This arrangement was briefly as follows:
That, save the city of New York, which hart been assigned separate space by the exposition authorities, and which had made an appropriation more than half as large as that made for the entire State exhibit, no city should be permitted to make a distinctive exhibit, but that all should be merged in a State exhibit, which should indicate clearly what the State as a whole is doing in elucation. Having decided upon this method, it bat remained to decide whether the work should be arranged by grades or subjects. The conference committee, which, upon the appointment of a director, took the name of “Advisory committee,” recommended that the grammar school work should be arranged by grades; in other words, that all the work of the State in a single grade should be installed together, thus making it possible for a grade teacher to compare her own work readily with that of New York's and to profit by the comparison, no matter in whose favor it might be. In the high school section all the work was to be installed by subjects and classed under various departments, such as science, classics, mathematics, etc., for the benefit of instructors in charge of departments. The compliments which have been bestowed upon the arrangement, and the readiness with which all visitors have found the work in which they were particularly interested, have demonstrated beyond doubt the wisdom of the committee in pursuing the course above outlined, and, in the opinion of
the writer, it is clearly the most satisfactory arrangement of work in an exposition of the scope of the present one.
The total appropriation for the exhibit was $20,000. This amount was expended approximately as follows: Installation ; booth, wall cabinets, furniture, floor coverings, etc.-
$6, 000 Salaries of director and assistants, and maintenance at St. Louis.
7, 250 Freight, express, cartage, telegrams, etc.
1,800 Material used in preparation, etc.
3, 000 Traveling expenses.
1, 200 Printing, etc.
550 Expenses of advisory committee.
In an educational exbibit, probably more than in any other, the necessity of personal explanation to supplement the work exhibited is necessary. Throughout the summer there were present trained attendants to explain the work exhibited and to give full details of systems and institutions from which the exbibit material had been sent. These attendants spoke the principal foreigir languages, which in itself was of much advantage to foreigners, greatly aiding them in grasping the ideas set forth and the methods exemplified.
There were many features of widespread interest, one of which was a series of 35 statistical charts bearing upon educational activities generally and setting forth startling facts as to the wonderful growth of New York's educational system. Another was an educational map showing the location, grade, construction, and normal capacity of every institution of learning within the borders of the State. Various methods of instruction which are peculiar to certain cities or localities were fully set forth; e. g., the system of individual instruction as carried on in Batavia; the complete system of free kindergartens and the progressive methods in vogue therein in Albany; manual training throughout the grades as carried on in Jamestown; high school athletics, as exemplified at Ithaca ; physical training as carried on in Syracuse. An exhibit from the State School of Clay Working and Ceramics at Alfred, which is the only school of its kind receiving State aid, was an especial feature.
The whole aim of those in charge of the exhibit was to show the work in education which is being done in the Empire State in all its forins and phases, and therefore the exhibit was not confined to the work of the public schools, as was quite generally done. Space was given to typical private institutions throughout the State to show the assistance which they are giving to the cause of education in general. In fine, there were interesting exhibits in place, not only from 24 cities and numerous villages both in elementary and high school work, but also the most complete and representative exhibit of rural school work that has ever been gathered in the State of New York; a composite exlibit of the normal school work of the State; a collective exhibit from the training schools and classes; concise displays from several of the smaller universities (the larger ones, such as Cornell and Columbia, having been granted separate space by the exposition authorities); interesting exhibits from technical and trade schools and business colleges; a composite exhibit from the Indian schools of the State; an interesting exhibit from the schools for defectives, including the blind and the deaf and dumb, and an alcove devoted to the work of summer schools and extension courses, as best exemplified at Chautauqua. The exhibit made by the education department of the State in visual instruction, as carried on by lantern slides, to aid in the teaching of geography, history, and kindred subjects, received
ED 1904 M-59
hearty commendation from educators generally, but particularly from roreign visitors. Nowhere else in the world is it carried on with the same careful attention to detail, nor is the same perfection of slide making reached, as in the State of New York.
The exhibit from first to last demonstrated beyond peradventure the beneficial results accruing from a strongly centralized, powerful, and at the same time most !iberal administration of educational interests. Under the fostering care and conservative guidance of the governing authority, standards have been steadily raised. The qualifications of instructors and the compensation of teachers have been constantly advanced. School buildings have been enlarged and improved with such rapidity that statistics show, in the year 1903, the value of buildings and sites in the State to be double what it was in 1893, a decade ago.
Under the inpetus given by the State's policy of duplicating money's raised locally for libraries and apparatus, school equipment is at the highest point of efficiency. A compulsory education law has been uniformly enforced, both in city and country, with a minimum of friction. In fact, the close relationship existing between the central authority and all educational activities has clearly made for superiority of educational work.
BY W. L. STOCKWELL, STATE SUPERINTENDENT OF SCHOOLS.
North Dakota's educational exhibit at the Louisiana Purchase Exposition gave a very excellent idea of the educational progress of the State. While not elaborate, a careful examination of the same would disclose the fact that she is not necessarily behind many of the older States in the character and quality of her school work.
A committee was appointed by the State Educational Association consisting of the following members: President J. H. Worst, of the agricultural college; President Geo. A. McFarland, of the State normal school, Valley City; Supt. Mattie M. Davis, Fargo; Miss Mazie ('lenens, Jamestown; Supt. W. E. Hoover, Park River, and State Supt. W. L. Stockwell. This committee was empowered by our State commissioner, Hon. David Bartlett, to undertake the preparation of the exhibit. Immediately after the appointment of this committee circulars were sent out to the educators of the State, calling their attention to the desires of the committee and asking their cooperation. The plan of the committee was to have an exhibit which would represent intelligently the work of the schools, from the rural schools to the university, including every department of education. The exhibit was not intended to be an exhibit of individual schools so much as a representation of the work of the State as a whole. In order that a more definite idea might be given of the work desired by the committee a preliminary exhibit was held during the State Educational Association of 1903 at Grand Forks. A large number of rural and graded schools sent exhibits, and the committee was enabled to call attention to the features which it particularly desired to have represented.
The work of collecting the exhibit was seriously handicapped by the lack of