History of Public School Education in Arizona/Chapter 8
THE FIRST STATE ADMINISTRATION OF SCHOOLS.
By the act of Congress of June 20, 1910, provision was made for the meeting of a constitutional convention in Arizona. This convention was instructed to provide also for the election of officers for the new State. This election was held about December, 1911. The State was admitted into the Union February 14, 1912. The enabling act under which the State was admitted began by declaring for the maintenance of a public school system to be open to all, free from sectarian control, and always conducted in English. Sections 16 and 36 and 2 and 32 of the public land were set aside for an endowment, and while the congressional act of June 20, 1910, expressly declares that the internal improvements act of September 4, 1841, the swamp-lands act of September 28, 1850, and the agricultural act of July 2, 1862, should not apply to Arizona, there was granted in lieu of these and all other donations and in addition to the four sections named above, land for educational purposes, as follows:
|For the university||200,000|
|For schools and asylums for the deaf, dumb, and the blind||100,000|
|For normal schools||200,000|
|For State charitable, penal, and reformatory institutions||100,000|
|For agricultural and mechanical colleges||150,000|
|For school of mines||150,000|
|For military institutes||100,000|
|For the payment of bonds issued by certain counties, municipalities, and school districts prior to January 1, 1897||1,000,000|
If there should be any surplus after these bonds were paid, it was to be added to the permanent school fund. Thus, in addition to the four sections in each township, there was given to the new State a total of 2,000,000 acres of land (or a total of more than 10,000,000 acres in all), most of which went directly to education, and there was the further promise of the usual 5 per cent of the net sales of public land by the Federal Government after the Territory had become a State. This sum was to be “a permanent and inviolable fund,” and the interest only was to be expended. No mortgage or other incumbrance on any part of these lands “in favor of any person or for any purpose or under any circumstance whatsoever” should ever be paid.
The constitution itself as finally drawn provided for a public-school system and recognized it as including the kindergarten, common, high, normal, and industrial schools, and a university, “which shall include an agricultural college, a school of mines, and such other technical schools as may be essential.” The permanent school fund was recognized and reaffirmed; the minimum school term was fixed at six months; and the method of selling the school land and administering the school fund was outlined. The price for irrigated land was fixed at $25 and of others at $3, and lands were to be neither sold nor leased except to “the highest and best bidder.”
A conservative estimate placed on the value of the school lands by the Arizona Journal of Education in December, 1911 (p. 122), credits the land gifts of the Federal Government to the State for educational purposes as of a then value of $20,000,000.
The new constitution provided that no sectarian instruction should ever be imparted in any school or State educational institution, and that no religious or political test of qualifications should be required as condition of admission to any public educational institution as teacher, student, or pupil. Further than this, the new constitution took the office of State superintendent out of the appointive group and made it an elective one, and since political parties were already organized in the Territory the race for the superintendency in 1911 was made by Prof. Claude D. Jones and Supt. C. O. Case. Mr. Case won and became the first superintendent of public instruction for the new State of Arizona. Mr. Case is a native of Illinois and was educated at Hillsdale College, Mich. He taught in Kansas and then went to California. He came to Arizona in 1889; settled in Phoenix and taught almost continuously for 25 years. He has been superintendent of schools in Globe, Mest, Prescott, and Jerome; he taught English in the Prescott High School; was principal of the high school at Phoenix and organized its commercial department. He is also known by his writings, for he has been a contributor of poems and stories to coast magazines. These have brought favorable criticism and have served to spread abroad the reputation of Arizona schools and teachers.
Mr. Case entered upon his duties with the organization of the new State administration March 12, 1912, and upon duties in a field which was not new or unorganized, but it was the privilege of the first State superintendent to take up the subject where his predecessor had left it and the transition from Territory to State made little difference in the administration of schools. Mr. Case made a preliminary report for the State to the first State legislature; has published two biennial reports, 1913–14 and 1915–16, a perusal of which will indicate the course taken in the development of State education during the more recent years.
Writing in 1914 the superintendent pointed out that for the biennium then reported the public schools had made “commendable progress,” and this may well be the characterization of the whole period. The “spirit of interest and progressiveness” was active and the outlay of money was greater than during the Territorial period, but as the superintendent points out, there was not, at this time, final authority for the interpretation of the school law. It was urged that the superintendent of public instruction—
make such interpretations and render such opinions and that these, when given by him and approved by the attorney general of the State, should be held to be correct and final until set aside by a court of competent jurisdiction or by subsequent legislation.
Another phase of the activities of the new school spirit are the efforts now being made to standardize the schools. For this purpose the interests of all parties who are engaged in school work, teachers, trustees, patrons, county superintendents, and others must be brought into a working whole. The school first secures a place on the probationary list when it can make 75 per cent on the standard school points; when a score of 85 per cent has been attained the school has become a standard school, while a grade of 95 per cent puts it down as a superior school. Points counted in this evolution cover school grounds and buildings, teachers, school board, and pupils.
This attempt at standardizing had, no doubt, a good effect on building. During the years just preceding admission as a State there had been little money spent for school buildings. This decline was now more than made good, the expenditures amounting to $490,000 in 1913–14; to nearly $600,000 in 1914–15; and to $469,000 n 1915–16, practically all of these sums being raised by the issue of bonds.
There is a marked tendency in all the schools of the State looking toward making the system of public schools more and more practical. This is shown in the constantly increasing demand for industrial education which is constantly widening the activities of the schools and demanding an increasing share of the public-school funds. The industrial departments in the high schools are doing commendable work on these lines. Some have night schools as well as day schools. In 1911–12 there was paid out of the State school fund to 10 high schools (including the Tempe Normal School) the sum of $18,401.18 for vocational work done. Since that date the payments have steadily increased; in 1912–13 there was paid to 16 high schools (including the two normal schools at Tempe and Flagstaff) $27,495.55; in 1913–14 it was $36,423.11 to 21 schools; and in 1914–15 $44,823.89 was paid for the work done in 21 schools. The largest sum was $2,500, paid to each of 15 institutions; the smallest was $248.72, paid to the Safford schools.
The provisions under which high schools are paid for work done in agriculture, mining, manual training, domestic science, and other vocational pursuits are based on chapter 80, second special session, laws of 1913, and finally by section 2797 of the school code of 1913 it was provided that normal schools when they had satisfactory rooms and equipment for giving “elementary training in agriculture, mining, manual training, domestic science, or other vocational pursuits” should participate on the same terms as the high schools in the public funds devoted to that purpose.
Another phase of the industrial education of the State is included under the work of the Territorial Industrial School. First provided for in 1893 under the title of “reform school,” it led an uncertain existence until 1903, when its name was changed from reform to industrial and its location fixed at Benson. It was then given 1 cent on the hundred for maintenance and 4 cents for improvements. It was reported as in satisfactory condition in 1909 and received that year $22,000, and the same for 1910, to be raised by what levy might be necessary and expended under direction of the board of control. Then came an agitation to change the school location; a very unfavorable report was made on its work and surroundings in 1912 and the agitation culminated in 1913 in an act for its removal to the abandoned Fort Grant military reservation as soon as water rights could be secured. The State had secured from Congress in 1912 a grant of 2,000 acres of the old military reservation, together with all the improvements. It was estimated that these improvements, which had originally cost $500,000, were still worth $225,000, and while the site was at a distance from the main lines of travel, the altitude, which is about 4,500 feet, the fertility of the soil, and its adaptability to dairying, stock raising, horticulture, and agriculture more its disadvantages, and it was thought that the institution should soon become self-sustaining.
But the course of development of this school has not run as smoothly as it was hoped. There has been a rapid change of superintendents, one having proved recreant to his trust, and his successor, while of “high integrity and strict morals,” disagreed with the board of control on the question of corporal punishment and was dismissed; another increased the running expenses by 72 per cent in a single year, and the State auditor complained that there was a tendency on the part of officials to conceal objectionable occurrences. It is frankly admitted that this is the most expensive of the State institutions, its per capita cost being considerably more than that of some other institutions. It is conceded, however, that its location is not favorable to a creditable showing in this respect, while its smaller enrollment accounts for a part of this increased cost. The cost of the Industrial School, for both maintenance and improvements, has been as follows: 1897, $279.50; 1902, $15,375.35; 1903, $13,868.22; 1904, $25,482.18; 1907, $24,086.30; 1908, $15,129.86; 1911, $24,642.91; 1912, $26,768.87; 1913, $40,520.41; 1914, $86,088.86; 1915, $61,568.12; 1916, $42,445.15.
The State has now also taken over and conducts the education of its deaf, dumb, and blind children. During Territorial days this duty had been performed under contract by institutions in California and Utah, the contract price being $350 per pupil per year. During these years the annual cost for this service was, as far as the reports of the State auditor show—1900, $543.90; 1901, $1,770; 1902, $1,770; 1903, $2,337.50; 1904, $1,500.
When the State took over this work it was located in rented buildings in Tucson. The school opened with 17 pupils. It had its own equipment, but there was little facility for carrying on its work and the school was then in great need of better classrooms, reading rooms, sitting rooms, and a well-equipped library. In 1915–16 there were 26 children in school, which was about half the known defectives in the State. The expenditures in recent years have been—1912, $1,546; 1913, $4,544.14; 1914, $9,610.65; 1915, $13,987.27; 1916, $14,983.67.
The rural schools, with a population more than twice as large as that of the urban schools, are now doing work of such vital importance that expert rural supervision is becoming a necessary step “toward equalizing the educational advantages of city and country.”  It was in accord with this idea that Dr. Neil was employed as State high-school inspector, but little special work has as yet been done for the grade schools. They are still under the care of the county superintendent, who is, first of all, a politician and sometimes without special qualifications for the more professional duties of his office. In addition to this, he generally has under his control more schools than he can properly administer; in some cases he does not devote all of his time to the work and is often without help in performing the routine duties of his office.
Another topic which has agitated the school world of Arizona during recent years is the county unit plan. While there was county organization to a certain extent, the plan offered in this connection meant still more centralization. The superintendent warns that while this might be good it might also be used “for the worst politics and abuse of power.” If accepted at all, the superintendent thought that it should be by local option, and he approved the proposal then made to appoint county school commissioners and county school superintendents rather than elect them.
Supt. Case reports that the arrangement of the matter of textbooks was, in general, “fairly satisfactory.” The law as revised in 1913 provided for a State-wide furnishing of free textbooks and paid all contingent expenses. When books were adopted the law required them to be used for five years and did not permit that more than one be changed each year. This worked a hardship, for it meant practical adoption each year. Books were loaned to pupils and were required to be fumigated before being reissued. The cost of these books to the State when first adopted in 1913–14 was $102,033.96. This stood for a total of 368,866 books received during the year and meant a cost of $2.42 for each child enrolled and $3.62 for each in average daily attendance. The next year there was paid out $31,983.16 for 96,745 new books and in 1915–16 a total of $33,637.60 for 122,424. The sales to pupils and the collection on books lost did not usually equal the contingent expenses of distribution. According to these figures the cost of supplying textbooks the first year after a new adoption was nearly $2.50 per pupil enrolled, and the cost of maintenance was about 70 cents per enrolled pupil.
The school law of 1913 provided a new section on teachers’ pensions. After a service of 25 years as a teacher in the public schools, the State board of education may order and direct that such person be retired and paid an annual pension of $600 out of the school fund of the State. The faults of this law are said to be in the main those of omission. There is no provision for incapacity during service, for widows or orphans. It provides a straight pension from State sources, but the pension has no relation to the salary previously received. There is demand for a tax to meet the cost of the system. Among the first teachers retired under this law were Miss Elizabeth Post, who taught from 1872 to 1913, and Prof. Charles H. Tully, ex-superintendent of the schools of Tucson and secretary of the old Territorial Teachers’ Association.
Besides reviewing the progress which had been made since admission as a State, the superintendent mentions in his report other objectives not yet attained. These include the question of a school accounting commission. The purpose of this proposal is to secure a higher degree of economy in the administration of State funds. It was urged that such a commission should be created by the assembly, and it should be its duty to unravel and straighten the “unsystematic and haphazard” method used in school accounting.
It was with this state of affairs in mind that the State tax commission took up for discussion in its report for 1914 (pp. 21–22) the question of State taxes for schools. It points out that there was appropriated for education in 1913, $1,026,407.50 and in 1914, $1,006,537.50, these sums representing practically 55 per cent of the entire tax levy of the State. The sum thus appropriated for schools in 1914 was $100,000 greater than the entire appropriations for all purposes in 1911. The primary object in creating this large school fund was said to be (1) to establish a fund for the purchase of free textbooks for all the common schools of the State and (2) for the creation of an additional fund “sufficient in amount so that such counties as Graham and Santa Cruz, having a large school population and at that time a small assessed valuation, could make it possible to maintain their schools for the entire school year.”
In other words the State of Arizona does what so many older States do—collects taxes on the basis of property valuation and immediately redistributes them on the basis of school population. The commission remarks that the intent of the law seems to have been that the county levy should decrease in proportion to the amount received from the State; that this has not always been the case; that the tendency has been to consider the sums derived from the State “in the nature of an additional or gratuitous amount to that which had formerly been received from the county,” and that in consequence the State money was in part at least lost sight of.
The commission suggests that inasmuch as the textbook fund is now provided for, better results would follow “if a larger proportion of these funds came to the schools direct through the regular county channels.”
In another connection the commission pertinently remarks (p. 32):
If the counties individually or in conjunction with the State bought all the school supplies, a saving of at least 25 per cent would be secured to the taxpayer. Generally speaking, the school funds are too loosely handled. No adequate system of accounting for all expenditures is universally enforced or required. No comprehensive compilations of statistics are kept, so that any taxpayer can judge the efficiency or economy of administration. If these defects are cured, present leaks would stop automatically.
Other lines of improvement still to be striven for were, in the opinion and recommendation of the State superintendent: (1) Standardization of schools; (2) certification of teachers; (3) promotion of teachers’ and pupils’ reading circle work; (4) enlargement and improvement of school library districts; (5) securing an annual meeting of school boards; (6) other amendments for improving school laws.
Certain other phases of public-school development demanding more attention in this study than they have as yet received include the following subjects:
I. THE COUNTY SUPERINTENDENT.
Since the organization of the State the question of the office and pay of the county superintendent has been definitely fixed.
It will be recalled that in the early days the duties of the county superintendent were performed by the county judge of probate. For the performance of these duties he received $100 per year, serving ostensibly as an expense account, but in reality as payment for the supposed performance of the educational duties of the office. Various efforts were made to increase this salary, and other efforts sought to separate the duties of the office of judge of probate from those of county school superintendent. Finally, in 1897, the counties which had attained a valuation of more than $3,000,000 each—Maricopa, Yavapai, Pima, and Cochise—were erected into what was known as class 1; the offices of probate judge and county superintendent were separated; and the county school superintendent was allowed a salary of $1,000 per year. Out of this sum he paid his own expenses, and the State superintendent complained that when this had been done he had only $250 left as salary. The Territory then allowed an extra $150 for expenses, and in 1907 this was raised to $250 and the county superintendent was required to visit each school twice during the year under penalty of losing $10 from his salary for each failure; he was, however, at liberty to deputize as a visitor “some competent person” residing in the neighborhood when the school in question was more than 75 miles from the county seat.
In 1909 the salary of the probate judge and ex officio county school superintendent (the offices not being separated in counties of the second class) was fixed at $1,200, with fees. In counties of the third, fourth, fifth, and sixth classes, this officer as county school superintendent received a salary of $300 and in addition thereto as probate judge he received fees and such salary as might be fixed by the board of supervisors, not less than $300 nor more than $600.
In 1910 the committee on the revisal of the school law purposed that the law be so amended that the counties be divided into three classes with salaries for the county superintendents of $2,400, $1,500, and $1,000 attached. Under this proposed law county superintendents were excused from visiting schools when a supervising principal was employed.
This proposal failed, however, to become a law, and in its stead there was passed in 1912 a law which separated the office in all counties and fixed a schedule of pay for the school superintendents. The 14 counties of the State were divided into 14 classes and payment allowed the county school superintendents as follows:
|Class.||Counties.||Population.||Pay.||Extra allowance for traveling expenses.|
|1||Maricopa||35,000 and over||$2,400||[Table 1]|
|2||Cochise||25,000 to 35,000||2,400||$250|
|3||Pima||20,000 to 25,000||1,500||[Table 2]|
|4||Yavapai||16,000 to 20,000||2,000||250|
|5||Greenlee||15,000 to 16,000||1,800||[Table 3]|
|6||Gila||10,000 to 15,000||2,000||300|
|7||Graham||8,000 to 10,000||1,200||150|
|8||Yuma||7,500 to 8,000||1,800||[Table 2]|
|9||Santa Cruz||7,000 to 7,500||600||250|
|10||Pinal||6,500 to 7,000||1,500||250|
|11||Navajo||6,000 to 6,500||1,400||[Table 2]|
|12||Coconino||5,500 to 6,000||1,500||[Table 2]|
|13||Mohave||4,000 to 5,500||900||250|
|14||Apache||Less than 4,000||1,000||250|
- Actual traveling expenses and clerk also allowed at $100 per month.
- Actual traveling expenses.
- Actual traveling expenses, and deputy allowed at $75 per month only while superintendent is away visiting schools.
II. ARIZONA TEACHERS’ ASSOCIATION.
The Arizona Teachers’ Association, dates from December 23, 1892. It was first organized at Phoenix during the administration of Supt. Netherton, and because of lack of members usually met with one of the county institutes, as their objects were substantially similar. This continued until 1910, when it held its nineteenth annual meeting jointly with the county institute at Douglas. It was estimated that 300 teachers were in attendance at that session, and an interesting program was offered. The principal teachers were from other States, and presented educational doctrines that were “practical, interesting, and suited to the needs of the teachers,” or were “wholesome, uplifting, and instructive.” But one paper, entitled “Attic Treasures,” served to enliven the meeting. This was a caustic criticism of the schools and their present-day methods, a spectacular and impassioned plea against the “more tawdry and showy gargoyles of modern schoolroom practice.” It was not pleasing to the leaders. An editorial in the Arizona Journal of Education serves to illustrate the attitude of the various types of teachers. This was the last meeting in which the teachers’ association and the county institutes met in joint session.
Taken all in all the proceedings show that the teachers are becoming better organized, that they are grasping more fully the fundamentals of the profession, and that they are broadening in the scope of their vision so as to cover primary, grammar, and high-school grades of instruction, together with the county board’s and superintendent’s phases of the work.
More recent meetings of the association (the 24th session being in 1916) have been held at the University of Arizona, and while not so exciting as that in 1910 have been of service in advancing the general cause of education. The association at that time also indorsed the survey of schools in the State then about to be taken by the Bureau of Education. A separate survey had been already proposed. The association urged that the minutes of the proceedings of the State board of education be published; that it appoint permanent committees for the revision of the course of study; that the $500,000 common-school levy should be made permanent; that a State committee on high-school libraries be appointed with a specified program of duties, to collect information and make recommendations; and that a permanent State educational council be established to regulate and improve the course of study, adopt textbooks, urge constitutional changes, and fix educational policy.
III. EDUCATIONAL JOURNALISM.
During the closing years of Territorial life the teaching profession had also come to feel itself strong enough to establish a professional organ. The first number of the Arizona Journal of Education appeared at Phœnix for April, 1910, declaring itself to be “devoted to education in general and to the schools and the cause of education in Arizona in particular.” It was to be published five times in the school year and was edited temporarily by T. L. Bolton, with C. L. Phelps and J. F. Hall as business managers. Many of the leading teachers gave their aid, and the journal was devoted to discussions of educational subjects interesting to the profession. The nine numbers published in 1910 and 1911 have been seen. It does not appear that the issues of this periodical extended beyond volume 2, the last number seen being the issue for December, 1911 (vol. 2, No. 4).
The next effort at school journalism was apparently The Arizona Teacher, of which the first number seen is that for June, 1914, being volume 1, No. 5. It has been continued since that date, apparently at irregular intervals. It is published at Tucson and the editor is I. Colodny, formerly a teacher in the university. Devoted to the cause of education in general, it has sought in particular to increase the interest in State history, to standardize schools and improve the condition of teachers; in the last year, however, it seems to have become in the main an opposition organ seeking to overthrow the president of the university and the State superintendent.
IV. SCHOOL SURVEY.
In 1915 a legislative proposal was made looking toward a general survey of the school system of the State. This movement was based on a favorable report looking to the same end recently made by the State Teachers’ Association, but as soon as the appropriation in the bill was stricken out, the matter lost its interest to many. The United States Bureau of Education was then called on to undertake this work in connection with the State department of public instruction, and its results are now being published. This survey included the elementary and secondary schools of the cities and rural communities, the State normal and the university, and its purpose was to find out the facts as they are, to report them fairly, to interpret them, and to make constructive suggestions as to improvements in the general administrative school system of the State as a whole. While commending in general the work of the schools as of “high rank, comparing favorably with those of the other States most advanced in education,” the survey points out that in the State—
there is lacking the centralized administration necessary if all educational agencies in the State are to be kept in touch with each other and if definite constructive leadership is to be furnished so that State-wide progress will be had without unnecessary delay and expense.
The survey then makes the following summary of its general recommendations:
1. Centralization of the State school system, placing the responsibility of providing equal educational opportunities definitely upon the State board of education and the State department of education working in cooperation with the county boards of education and school district trustees.
2. Reorganization of the State board of education, conferring upon it enlarged powers. It should be composed of seven persons, not necessarily engaged in education, appointed by the governor with the approval of the senate. The term of office should be at least eight years, not more than two terms expiring each biennium. The State superintendent should be its executive officer; all of its duties should be carried out through him.
3. Provision for a nonpolitical State superintendent who shall be the head of an enlarged and more effective State department of education. He should be selected and appointed by the State board of education for his particular fitness for the position. The department should have, in addition to the State superintendent, at least two general assistants as field agents, also a State school architect, and expert statistician, a chief of division of certification, and one person in charge of textbook distribution.
4. Provision for county control of county school funds through county boards of education and nonpolitical county superintendents. The county is now the unit of support; there should be in each county a county board of education charged with the general management of the schools of the county, composed of five persons not engaged in school work, elected by popular vote, the term of office being at least six years. The board should appoint the county superintendent, who should be its executive officer and the supervisor of all schools except in city districts employing superintendents.
5. Reorganization of the method of apportioning State funds on a basis which recognizes county and local effort. There should be paid to each county approximately $200 for every teacher employed; whatever remains should be apportioned to the counties on the basis of the aggregate attendance.
6. Requirements for a higher standard of general and professional education for teachers, a revision of the method of certification, establishment of a certification division in the State department of education, which would be also a teachers’ employment bureau.
7. Means to encourage the erection of suitable school buildings and to prevent further erection ofones by having the plans for all school buildings submitted to the State department for approval. The department should employ a school architect.
8. Local school organization should continue, the trustees acting as custodians of the school property, immediate overseers of the school, and agents of the county board. High-school districts and elementary school districts should be made coterminous by consolidating all common-school districts now located in union high-school districts in one district for both elementary and high-school purposes under the same management and control. The high schools, as well as elementary schools, should be supported largely by the State and county funds and should be free from tuition to all pupils of the county.
9. Provision for expert supervision of rural schools. The supervision of the instructional work in all schools outside of those in independent cities employing full-time superintendents should be under the direction of the county superintendent. He should be an able educator, fitted by experience and training, and have adequate office help and assistant supervisors when necessary. He should be selected and appointed by the county board of education and retained in office as long as satisfactory work is done.
10. Reorganization of the method of handling State textbooks to prevent unnecessary losses. There should be one person employed in the State department to devote his entire time to the management of proper care and delivery of textbooks; county superintendents should be responsible for the requisitions submitted. District clerks should be bonded and held responsible for the care and delivery of the books to the school. The cost of textbooks furnished to each county by the State should be deducted from the State funds after apportionment to the counties but before distribution.
11. The two State normal schools should be placed under the control and management of the reorganized State board of education. Also this board should be given the control and management of the State Industrial School. A careful investigation should be made to determine whether a special institution for mental defectives is needed at the present time.
12. The teachers’ pension system is not in accordance with pension schemes generally recognized as acceptable. It should be revised.
13. Money for support of the State department, for teachers’ pensions, and other special purposes should be provided by direct appropriation and not taken from the State school fund.
V. CITY AND HIGH SCHOOLS.
There has been in Arizona little differentiation between city and other public schools. The city schools have received the favors and privileges which naturally always come to the strongest districts, but have in other respects had a development substantially the same as all other schools. This similarity of all schools in Arizona is due to the conditions of their evolution. In the earlier days city schools were the only ones, for, because of the conditions of settlement, the character of the country itself, and the presence of Indians, settlements were largely made in compact groups; this characteristic was accentuated by the demands of mining, the leading business occupation. The schools were, therefore, first organized in the towns and from them as a center extended to the outlying districts. They form the basis of the statistics from year to year. Each is organized into a single district with its own superintendent and one or more schools, with the taxing power and the authority to issue bonds. While having no history aside from the general history of public schools in the Territory and State, they have led in forward movements. In fact without them it would have been impossible for the history of the public schools to be written, for there would have been no history to write.
The city schools began with the lower grades and evolved their higher grades and their high schools by degrees. In December, 1882, Supt. M. M. Sherman reported that the advanced grade in the Tombstone schools “is prepared for high-school work which it is now doing in part.” In the same report Supt. Sherman continued:
Doubtless in the schools of Prescott, Phoenix, and Tucson, as well as in Tombstone, high-school work is being done, but some special encouragement should be given. * * * If in these places were created specially nurtured high schools, in connection with their common-school system, many students throughout the Territory that are now compelled to go abroad would find near at hand, under home influences, the higher education sought.
Indeed, it would appear that the high school was already known at that time in Tucson; for, remarking on these words of Supt. Sherman’s report, Mr. McCrea said (pp. 108–9):
While there was no provision in the law for secondary schools, various towns, among them Prescott, Phoenix, Tombstone, and Tucson, had tried to inaugurate high schools. While the school at Tucson was probably larger and more successful than the others, its uncertain foundation is shown by the fact that although such work was begun as early as 1880, but one class was ever graduated, and that not until 1893.
The Territorial report of 1881–82, however, speaks only of “advanced grades” in the Tucson schools, and gives nowhere any indication of the precise degree of advancement. No schools, classified as high schools, are reported in 1885–86, but there is reason to believe that all of the larger cities in the Territory were doing some work of high-school grade, although it was given in small doses and presumably generally counted as a part of the grade work.
In the case of Tucson it was found less necessary to develop the high-school grade because of the preparatory department of the newly organized university, which furnished all the high-school facilities of which the town was able to avail itself. In recent years, as the university becomes stronger and better organized, it has begun to close out its preparatory work, and this in turn is thrown back on the city or other high schools, from which special development may be expected in the near future. This is already becoming visible in some of the cities not only in special high-school work, but in general development and growth. Thus, in the case of Tucson itself, in 1887–88 there was a total of 528 pupils in the whole school; there were 3 buildings and 11 teachers; the property of the district, including library and apparatus, was valued at $68,425; the receipts from taxes and rents were $15,333.95, while the total expenditures were $11,106.14. In 1908–9 the enrollment had increased to 2,160, and the courses offered at that time were 4-year courses in Latin, English, mathematics, and history, with 2-year courses in Spanish and German and in commercial work. By 1909–10 there were 5 ward schools and a high school, and there were employed 53 teachers, 5 principals, and 3 supervisors. In that year the total enrollment was 2,313.
The enrollment in Tucson has steadily increased, necessitating more teachers and more buildings, until in 1915–16 it was 3,139, and there were 6 school buildings and 1 building rented for use as a colored school. There are now (1916–17) 8 principals, 4 supervisors, and 73 teachers, and the enrollment at the end of the sixth month was 3,446. During the summer of 1917 it was expected that a large $100,000 building would be erected in place of the Safford School, and four 2-room buildings and one 4-room building were to be put up, one of the 2-room buildings to be used as a colored school.
The growth of another selected city school system may be taken to represent the general growth and development of the whole.
The Globe School attained an attendance of 1,362 for the year 1914–15, of whom 1,091 were in the public and 271 in the high school. This system adopted the six-and-six plan at the beginning of 1914. Under this plan the six upper grades, from the seventh to the twelfth, inclusive, are organized as the high school and all work is done on the departmental system.
The idea has met with favor on the part of everyone. The pupils of the two upper grammar grades are thus given an opportunity of enjoying high-school privileges. They have manual training, home economics, spelling, and music with their older companions, and enter into all the school activities with them. This arrangement gives every child a variety of teachers and a chance to progress by subjects rather than by grade. The plan is economical and has saved the district several hundred dollars, as the regular high-school teachers have been able to handle classes in the upper grades.
In 1915–16 the total sum expended for the first six grades was $37,663.41; in 1916–17, $47,174.96. The expenditures of the six upper grades, including the high school, were $26,930.76 and $25,364.84, respectively. In the high school the daily average attendance was 265.1 and 306.4; the cost per capita, $99,31 and $93.96. In the lower grades the average attendance was 859 and 980 and the per capita cost $44.55 and $44.66. The estimates for the high school for 1917–18 are $31,694.50; for the public school, $76,280.62; total for the public-school system, $107,975.16.
The public school proper is housed in six buildings, one of which provides a home for colored pupils. The high school has its own building, completed in 1904, and with modern equipment. It has been admitted to membership in the North Central Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools, a privilege highly appreciated by the high schools of the State.
Because of the location of Globe in a mining section and the evident demand for such instruction, there were established in 1916–17 courses in geology and mineralogy. A collection of specimens for illustration and laboratory use has been begun.
The high school of Douglas offers a special course of study in domestic science and manual training. It printed an outline of the work required in 1914–15.
In Bisbee the board of education is at the present time working toward the six-and-six plan. This will throw the seventh, eighth, and ninth grades, now known as intermediate, along with the tenth, eleventh, and twelfth, into the high school. It is intended to build three junior high schools, and there are summer terms for backward and over-age pupils. In these matters Bisbee has been a leader in the State. On September 30, 1916, there were 2,583 pupils enrolled, being a gain of 243 over the corresponding period of 1915. It is planned to divide the school year into four terms of 12 weeks each, with one week’s vacation between terms. When graduates of the Bisbee High School are employed as teachers, they have a primary supervisor to help them in planning and supervising their work. Salaries for grade teachers range from $75 to $100 for nine months.
In the high school itself at Bisbee seven courses are offered—college preparatory, business, art, manual training, domestic science, general, and scientific. Twelve teachers are employed, and a night school is conducted, open to all, and with an enrollment of 267 (1916–17), many of whom are adults, including foreigners. The school has a library of over 2,000 volumes.
In the earlier days there was no necessity for differentiating between the various normal parts of a city system. The grammar and high-school grades came up as the different parts of a single whole.
The beginning of differentiation of high schools from the city school of the grades is contained in the remark of Supt. Netherton in 1893–94. In his report for that year he says:
There is always a lack of interest in high-school work in newly settled countries. Not only is there a lack of interest manifested, but strong opposition frequently arises to any effort to provide liberally for the maintenance of high schools. A great many do not seem to appreciate the fact that the high school is one of the rounds of the educational ladder that can not be dispensed with without serious danger to our educational interests. * * *
While I believe that the advantages of a high school are worth more to every citizen than he contributes to its support, owing to the physical character of Arizona there are many isolated and thinly populated sections where it would be impossible to establish high schools, and there is an appearance of injustice in taxing them to support institutions at so great a distance from them that they could not reap any direct advantage therefrom. A system of high schools can be provided for, however, against which these objections will not lie. Pass a law allowing any number of common-school districts to consolidate for the purpose of maintaining a high school, with the consent of a majority of the taxpayers of the districts proposing to unite. Then an annual levy can be made on the property in the high-school district for its maintenance. The school should be free for all residents of the high-school district, and a reasonable tuition fee should be charged for nonresidents. This is a plan that has been successfully tried in California and some of the Eastern States and is as efficient as it is fair. Students can live at home and reap all the advantages of a first-class education, thus saving to the people the expense of transportation to and living expenses at outside institutions.
The legislature responded to this suggestion, and the law relating to high schools, passed in 1895, provided that any school district of 2,000 or more inhabitants, or any two or more adjoining districts with the necessary population, might unite and form a union high-school district for the purpose of maintaining a high school. They were to elect a board of education of five, who were to have all necessary powers, prescribe the course of study and admit applicants, but there was no provision for special funds other than those to be raised by an annual tax, the amount of which was to be estimated for by the county superintendent, and it was made the duty of the proper authorities to levy the tax asked on the single or union high-school district. It was thus entirely voluntary, and the whole support was to come out of local taxes. This was doubtless the greatest mistake. In the stage of development in which the Arizona schools then were, it is not reasonable to suppose that they would take kindly to district taxation without Territorial support. In fact, this had been their very first experience. The acts of 1867 and 1868 which had placed school support on the local district entirely were a flat failure—no schools were organized.
Of this high-school law and its accomplishments Supt. Shewman said in 1899:
We have had cause to regret the lack of interest in, and, we might say, the opposition to, the establishment of high schools in the Territory. Our law at present is liberal in its encouragement of the organization of high schools, and there are many localities where one would prove of inestimable value to the cause of education. * * * No school system is perfect without the high school. There is a missing link which no other school can supply, unless, indeed, our normal and university must supply the stepping stone by being burdened with a grammar department to supply the course furnished by the high school. There are now in this Territory some high schools existing under the old law and keeping up the course as prescribed under the old law, but there is but one that is recognized as having legal existence under the latest act of the legislative assembly, that at Phoenix. This school is in a most prosperous condition.
The first school organized under the law of 1895 was the Union High School at Phoenix, which had been in course of evolution since 1880. It had even graduated a few pupils and it now entered upon a real course of development. The next high school organized was that of Mesa, Maricopa County, which began work with the session of 1901–2. There were 164 “advanced-grade” pupils reported for 1901 and 151 the next year. In 1904 a third high school was organized at Prescott, in Yavapai County. There were reported in that year 278 pupils in the three high schools, with an average attendance of 218, and with 1,000 volumes in the libraries at Union and Mesa. The three had a total income of $14,188.44, with a total expenditure of $13,443.54, of which $7,182.07 went for the payment of salaries. The statistics to date available are neither continuous, complete, nor uniform; nor are the statistics given by High School Inspector Dr. Neil for 1915–16 as complete as they should be. In the absence of more complete reports the figures are given as they appear in the Territorial and State reports.
|Years.||High schools.||Counties with high schools.||Total enrollment.||Average daily attendance.||Length of term in months.||Teachers employed.||Books in library.||Valuation of school property.||Total receipts, including balances.||Total expenditures.|
- This evidently refers to the high-school departments of existing city high schools.
- Number in “advanced grade,” probably includes more than the schools organized under the law of 1895.
Brief surveys of the work of some individual high schools may be of interest and service in the absence of any complete general summary covering the whole field. All of them furnish many items of interest to an educator, and some are not without elements of romance.
The Florence High School is adopting some new styles in matters of school architecture. Instead of the conventional front, it has erected a structure in a radial design of the old Spanish mission type. Around a central building used for an assembly hall and school library four wings radiate northwest, northeast, southwest, southeast, with imposing colonnades to east and west. The ventilation and light are excellent, and the classrooms are removed from all the unpleasant but necessary noises of other departments. Three lines of work are offered, college preparatory, scientific, and commercial. A lyceum course is given under the auspices of the two school boards, and in the high school is supplied what the community may lack in the way of civic necessities.
The High School, in the Verde-Jerome district in Yavapai County, is a new school, recently organized, with a new building presented by Senator Clark. “The whole work of the school has been planned to meet the direct needs of the smelter town,” says one of the teachers, and this purpose has been so liberally interpreted as to make the school and the schoolhouse a very real and very active center of the social activity of the community.
There is sometimes even something of romance in the history of these high schools which brings out in clear relief the devotion of these people to an educational ideal which they have made their own. This is brilliantly illustrated in the history of the high school of Yuma. The Territorial penitentiary was located at Yuma for some years before its removal to larger and more spacious quarters at Florence, leaving its old buildings at Yuma unoccupied. At about the time of this transfer the Yuma High School was being organized, but was without a local habitation (1909). Under the stress of circumstances the high school was conducted in the buildings within the high walls of the old penitentiary. Says the principal:
The class of 1914 is probably the only class in the United States who spent four years in a penitentiary and graduated at the same, receiving their diplomas. From this it seems that Yuma has carried prison reform even beyond the fondest hopes of his excellency, Gov. Hunt.
And one of the local poets has sung:
Queer use to make of this old “pen,”
Old dungeoned haunt of hate and fear;
But when all like this can be used like this,
The millenium will then be here.
The school moved into its new building, costing $75,000, in 1914. It employs seven teachers and offers courses in Latin, Spanish, French, English, and the sciences, including agriculture and dairy farming, domestic science and domestic art, commercial subjects, history, music, art, and physical culture.
In 1910 the Territorial board of education adopted the following uniform courses of study for the high schools: English, 4 units; mathematics—algebra, 1½ units; geometry, 1 unit; history, 2 units; ancient and modern languages, 2 units; science, 2 units; electives, 3½ units.
A unit was defined as consisting of five periods of 45 minutes each per week for 36 weeks. This course was to become effective September, 1910. In that year commercial courses were reported in Phoenix, Prescott, Jerome, Yuma, Tucson, Tombstone, Globe, and Tempe. The schools of Bisbee and Mesa also had some courses in commercial subjects.
The last report on high schools as a whole is that by Dr. Neil, high-school inspector, for the year 1915–16. It covers 26 schools located in 13 of the 14 counties of the State, Apache County alone being unrepresented. This report includes both classes of high schools, known in other States as city and country high schools. That these classes are less clearly differentiated in Arizona than in the other States is due to the character of the settlements. As water is the chief desideratum in Arizona, settlements must of necessity be within the bounds or reach of running water, hence the tendency to settlement in village communities is inevitable. Of the Arizona high schools, three are in villages with about 1,000 inhabitants, 12 are in communities with 2,500 inhabitants or less (counted as rural communities in the census), and 14 are in towns of over 2,500.
Of the list of buildings reported there yet remains one of wood—that at Tombstone erected in 1885. The next oldest is the one at Morenci, built in 1905. The cost has varied from $260,000 for the house at Phoenix, built in 1911, down to $8,000 for that at Willcox, built the same year. The total cost of 22 buildings is given as $1,350,000, or an average of about $60,000 each. In a majority of cases the houses seem well supplied with rooms, some of them having 24, 25, 30, and that at Phoenix 48 rooms. The heating is in most cases modern—either steam or hot air. Most schools are supplied with some laboratory facilities. Fifteen report such facilities in biology, valued at $5,570; 24 report laboratories for physics, valued at $22,650; 22 in chemistry, worth $13,150; 7 in agriculture, worth $1,800; 22 report manual training equipment, worth $47,900; 21 domestic science, worth $26,050; 23 commercial equipment, worth $19,700. The term varied between 36 and 40 weeks, with an average of a fraction over 37. Of the 22 buildings reported, 1 was created in 1908, 4 in 1909, 2 in 1911, 3 in 1912, 2 in 1913, 3 in 1914, 2 in 1915, and 3 in 1916, with two others under construction. These dates show clearly that the modern school idea has taken a firm hold on the Arizona mind; and the material used—brick, brick and concrete, or stone in all structures except the oldest—shows that they are planned for a long future. About half of these schools were fortunately abundantly supplied with grounds and 13 had trees.
A detailed study of the teaching force of the Arizona High Schools was undertaken in the spring of 1916 and revealed as it progressed some interesting facts. In this study the faculties of 24 high schools were considered. Of the 208 high-school teachers reported, 141 were holders of bachelors’ degrees, including graduates of standard colleges and universities, but excluding normal schools and commercial colleges. This number of college graduates gives a higher proportion than is found in some of the older States, notwithstanding the urgings in this direction of the North Central Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools; 28 of these teachers held advanced degrees, like A.M. and Ph.D.; 56 had pursued postgraduate studies; 91 had been trained in or graduated from normal schools, 11 in business colleges, and one in a technical school. Nearly half of these teachers were then following courses at summer schools and 84 per cent came into Arizona from without the State, mainly from Illinois and Kansas. The cosmopolitan character of their education is shown by the 153 educational institutions which they represent; about 85 per cent of these teachers got their preliminary experience in other States which seems to indicate that school officials in Arizona are unwilling to assist in “breaking in” young teachers, and as a consequence young people who are trained for teaching are driven out of it for the beginnings of their actual teaching experience.
According to the report of Dr. Neil for 1915–16, there were then 242 high-school teachers at work in the State, of whom 140 were college graduates and 46 normal graduates; 23 libraries contained 20,572 volumes. There were 1,170 first-year pupils; 542, second-year; 786 third-year; 383 fourth-year, of whom 356 graduated. Of these, 111 entered college and 70 entered a normal school. The salaries of teachers varied from $55 per month, the smallest at Yuma, to $225 the largest at Phoenix. The cost per capita per pupil varied between $42.35 at Winslow and $200 at Douglas. The average cost for 22 schools was $123.65 per pupil.
The following table, made up from reports furnished to this office shows the condition of the high schools along certain lines not given in detail in Dr. Neil’s report.
|Schools.||Years in course.||Days in session.||Teachers.||Pupils.||Volumes in library.||Value of library.||Total value, school property.||Total income.||Expended for sites, buildings, etc.||Courses given other than academic.|
|Benson [Table 1]||4||170||6||55||300||$55,000||4|
|Clarkdale||4||200||3||[Table 2] 23||2,000||3,000||21,000||2|
|Duncan [Table 1]||4||170||4||36||50||75||50,800|
|Florence Union [Table 1]||4||172||8||56||600||800||110,000||3|
|Globe [Table 1]||4||180||12||108||550||800||100,000||4,738|
|Phoenix Union||4||165||37||[Table 3] 910||900||1,000||265,000||70,449||4|
|Prescott||4||184||8||[Table 2] 146||1,090||1,368||123,702||20,745||3|
|Safford [Table 1]||4||172||6||46||471||500||55,000||6,850||55,000|
- Statistics for 1916–17.
- Includes 1 colored pupil.
- Includes 8 colored pupils.
VI. THE NORMAL SCHOOLS.
Normal-school training in Arizona dates from 1885. An act passed on March 12, 1885, appropriated $5,000 for the erection of suitable buildings and $3,500 for support of the school for the two years 1885 and 1886. The Territory furnished for a site 20 acres of land, with water privileges, within half a mile of Tempe, Maricopa County, and 9 miles from Phoenix. Contracts were let for the building at $6,497 to the lowest responsible bidder, and the completed building was delivered January 11, 1886. Then the trouble began. The governor refused to countersign any warrant for more than $5,000; a test case was made and argued before the chief justice, but no decision was made at the time; the matter seems to have been dropped, and the balance due was presumably paid later out of the regular income of the institution from the tax of 2½ cents on the hundred given by the same assembly for the erection of buildings and the support of the institution.
The first building was 60 by 70 feet, and was entirely surrounded by verandas 10 feet wide; four rooms 30 feet square were then provided. The school was opened February 8, 1886, and placed under the administration of Prof. H. Bradford Farmer. In that year a four months’ term was provided, and there were 33 pupils in attendance. Tuition was free to those who intended to teach and to those nominated by a member of the legislature; other persons were charged $4 per month. The course of study began with elementary work, including reading, writing, geography, and arithmetic, history of United States, and grammar for the first year, and for the second, algebra, natural philosophy, physiology, method, essays, select readings, and declamations. There was an advanced course of three years which covered these subjects and also Latin, analysis, Constitution of the United States, Cesar, physiology, methods, Cicero, general history, geometry, rhetoric, Virgil, English literature, political economy, history and philosophy of education, essays, etc. On the completion of either of these courses a corresponding diploma was given, entitling the holder to teach in the public schools of the Territory.
It will be noticed that there was little in either of these courses which was professional in character; that the courses differed but little from regular high-school courses; that the first service of this school was evidently to furnish high-school work to such as were advanced enough and financially able to take it, in this way supplying in part the almost total lack of secondary work then in the Territory, for at that date the development of the city high schools had just begun and that of the union high schools was still a long way off.
For the next 15 years the Tempe Normal School had a somewhat tempestuous career. Always well supported by the Territory in matters financial, it was nevertheless the football of politics and its usefulness was for this reason diminished. Notwithstanding these more or less recurring troubles, the school has constantly grown, has widened and extended its courses, and has now developed into an institution of great merit. This growth is shown by the story of development as told from year to year in the reports of the superintendent and in other sources. The principals during the first 15 years were H. B. Farmer, 1885–1888; Robert L. Long, ex-superintendent of public instruction, 1888–1890; D. A. Reed, 1890, and Edgar L. Storment to 1895; Dr. James McNaughton, 1895–1900; Joseph Warren Smith, 1900–1, when the present principal, Dr. A. J. Matthews, came into office. The first years were marked as a period of slow, steady growth, during which the institution gained definite recognition as a factor in the development of Arizona.
In 1889–90 when the school was just fairly getting on its feet its object was declared to be—
that the school shall furnish an opportunity for an education at home beyond that possible in the grammar school, and the course of study has been so arranged that the pupil upon completing the grammar-school course shall be fitted for entrance * * *, The past year has marked a great increase in the efficiency and popularity of the school, there being now in attendance 40 scholars, most of whom are fitting themselves for the vocation of teacher. The greatest need under which the school now labors is some provision for dormitories.
It was also pointed out at this time, 1889–90, that the 2½ cents annual levy given to the normal school was not needed, since more than enough money for its support was reapportioned yearly to the counties out of the school fund.
In 1893, at the end of eight years, it was reported that 295 students had been matriculated and 35 graduated, 15 of whom had become teachers in the Territory. In 1895, or 10 years after organization, the annual matriculation had reached nearly 100, the graduating class numbered 12, and the faculty had increased to 5. The record of matriculation for the preceding five years, including both males and females, was as follows: 1890–91, 54; 1891–92, 76; 1892–93, 87; 1893–94, 91; 1894–95, 94.
The seventeenth assembly (that for 1895) levied a tax of two-fifths of a mill on each dollar of assessed valuation (4 cents on the hundred) to be used in the erection and better maintenance of a normal-school building, which was finished in 1897 at a cost when completed of about $75,000. In purpose the institution sought to keep up with the development of the Territory and meet the needs of students, and while progress was being made on these lines it was said in 1895–96 that the public schools were as yet in such a condition that both the normal school and the university were still compelled to do grammar grade work.
For the year 1898–99 it was reported that 90 normal graduates were employed in the public schools, and in 1899–1900 the number was 89.
The legislature of 1899 granted an annual tax of 1½ cents on the hundred for the normal-school fund and appropriated $3,500 to pay the accumulated indebtedness. In its report on the workings of the institution the visiting committee of the trustees for that year considered the development of the school as “worthy of commendation” and then fell into a discvussion of the whole subject, which showed the trend of the school itself and of the times:
We desire to call particular attention to the course of study and to most strongly commend the efforts of the trustees in giving a thorough English course. Too many of the young people of America graduate from high schools and colleges with a mere smattering of a practical education. There is an intense desire on the part of such institutions to rush students into Latin, Greek, French, German, higher mathematics, mental and moral science, etc., before they have acquired proficiency in spelling, grammar, rhetoric, geography, the history of our country and our flag, physiology, and those other branches which are usually called “common.” It is evident to those who are victims of such mistakes that the normal school at Tempe insists upon a thorough English education before anything else is considered. If in time it is demonstrated that our young men and women come from the public schools very proficient in the common branches, then will be ample time to extend the course to meet their needs. At present the course as outlined is, in our opinion, that which our students need to fit them as teachers, as well as to make them most useful as men and women in any walk in life. We believe that the board has acted wisely in adopting the plan of giving three years to academic work and one year to those branches which belong purely to the professional teacher. The students who find that they are not fitted for teaching, or who desire to adopt some other life course, will have lost no time in the study of methods of teaching, etc. On the other hand, the student who desires to teach is thereby better equipped for the study of purely professional branches in his final year.
By this arrangement the Territory succeeded to an extent in supplying the need of high schools. Those who could afford and had the disposition went to the normal school at Tempe or to the university at Tucson for their academic and high-school courses. In this way the high-school facilities of the Territory were greatly enlarged.
In 1899 a second normal school, located at Flagstaff on the Santa Fe Pacific Railroad and known as the Northern Normal School of Arizona, was organized. The genesis of this institution is interesting. Its beginnings go back to an act passed in 1893 looking to the creation of a school for delinquent boys.
In that year such a school was actually provided by law and was to be formally known as the Reform School for juvenile offenders. A building for this purpose located at Flagstaff was commenced and at least $33,265 spent on the same. It was still unfinished in 1897, when it was given a special tax of 3 cents on the hundred for a building fund. But by this time the people of Flagstaff had come to the conclusion that a reform institution in their midst would be a drawback to their community; so with this idea in mind they set out to persuade the Territorial authorities that it would be cheaper to keep such incorrigible bodys in the proper institutions in California rather than at home. They won their point. Then it became necessary to find use for the unfinished building, and it was determined to make it a branch insane asylum. This was done by chapter 25, acts of 1897, but the people of Flagstaff disliked this plan also, and its use was again changed.
Finally, it was suggested that the building would serve a good purpose as a normal school for the northern half of the Territory, which was at a distance from and inconvenient to the normal school at Tempe. This suggestion was accepted; the act for the asylum passed in 1897 was repealed, and the effort was now begun to develop this new school into an institution of the same grade in all respects as the older one at Tempe, with its diplomas of the same force and effect. Teaching began in 1899, and the committee which visited the school in June, 1900, reported it as in “most excellent condition” and recommended that since there were no high schools in northern Arizona an “academic course” should be added to the more technical and professional work, for “this seems only justice to the boys and girls of northern Arizona.” It was not considered wise, however, to introduce manual training into the schools and colleges of the Territory at that time. From the organization and formal opening of the Northern Arizona Normal School at Flagstaff in 1899, the history of the institution and of the Tempe Normal must be told in connection with each other.
The report of the board of visitors on these schools for 1906 is highly satisfactory. The Tempe school was then 20 years of age; it had fortunately passed through most of the period of confusion and political upheaval. It had acquired in 1901 the principal whom it has ever since retained, and in 1906 had reached an enrollment of 243 in the normal school and 177 in the training school, to which an eighth grade was then being added. The legislature of 1905 had given Tempe a 5½ cent building fund, producing $45,000, of which $44,274.01 was expended for permanent improvements during the year. The growth of the institution had been “rapid and constant,” and while in former years there had been a shortage of books, the library was now said to occupy “a large part of the study room,” and was reported to the United States Bureau of Education in 1909 as containing 5,000 volumes and 500 pamphlets. It was estimated that if the then rate of 9 cents on the hundred for maintenance was continued it would be sufficient for maintenance without special assessments for improvements.
In 1907–8 the registration had reached a total of 272 in the normal school and 191 in the training school. There were then 19 in the faculty and the class of 1909 was expected to number 50 or over. Two general courses leading to graduation were maintained—a five-year course for graduates of the grammar schools and a two-year course for graduates of a four-year high-school course. The former course included both academic and professional work, the latter in the main professional work only. It was evident that the normal schools were still needed to supply the lack of high schools. This is seen clearly in the course offered: English, mathematics, science, history and sciences, Latin, Spanish, professional instruction and practice teaching, commercial, drawing, vocal music, manual training, military drill, and physical culture. Students might use this work as a basis of admission to college on the same terms as high-school graduates. The normal-school diploma granted at completion of the course was equivalent to a life diploma in Arizona and was accredited in California and some other States as equivalent to a diploma from their own State normal schools.
Up to the time of this report more than $300,000 had been invested in this institution.
Since 1908 the school has continued its progressive development. In 1914–15 besides the two courses already mentioned—the two-year professional course for graduates of high schools and the five-year general and professional course for graduates of the grammar schools—there had been added two others—a four years’ academic course for graduates of the four-year high-school course who do not expect to teach, and a training school course which embraces all grades of common-school work, from the kindergarten to the eighth grade, inclusive. Special courses to prepare teachers to meet the requirements in particular lines are also given, and since the completion of a $90,000 building erected for that purpose special attention is given to vocational training. The faculty then numbered 23, but it was pointed out that an increase was necessary if the school was to meet the need of the growing State. The matriculation for 1916–17 was 434 in the normal school and 272 in the training school; the faculty had increased to 32 members; its income was about $95,000, making the average cost per pupil in the normal classes $177.42. The total property valuation of the plant was then $567,000, and it was determined to ask the next legislature for $110,000 per year.
From Flagstaff it was reported in 1905–6 that that school was still in need of an academic department, “so that such students as desire may be fitted for our Territorial university instead of having to go out of the Territory to secure the necessary instruction.” The enrollment during these years had remained low: 33 in 1899-1900; 40 in 1900–1901; 45 in 1902–3 and 1903–4; 59 in 1904–5; and 60 in 1905–6. The cost the first year (1899–1900) was $5,825.57; in 1905–6, $13,978.64. The total cost for the seven years of the school is given as $71,152.05; the number of teachers was at first 2; it rose the second year to 4, and the fifth year to 6, where it remained. There had been in all 42 graduates, or an average of 7 for the six graduating years. It was reported in 1907–8 that that year had been the “most prosperous” of its existence. Its enrollment reached 94, with 64 in the training school, which offered 7 grades of work. There were 12 graduates in 1908, and it had up to that time 49 graduates, of whom 43 had taught in the Territory. Two dormitories had been recently built at a cost of $50,000, but there was still crying need for liberal appropriations in the near future. A summer term was first offered in 1907. It has since become a permanent part of the school, having 225 pupils in 1916. The regular matriculation began to gain in 1911–12 when it passed the hundred mark and reached 137; in 1916–17 there were 334, and the faculty then numbered 21, but it was reported that the school was still cramped for room in which to work.
The general administration of these schools is under the direction of two distinct but similar boards of three members each; the superintendent of public instruction is a member of each board. The other members of the Tempe Board are two citizens selected from that section by the governor, while those controlling the Flagstaff School come in the same way from that section.
In general the effort was at first made to support the institutions by special taxes laid for their particular benefit, and there has been a tendency toward standardizing the appropriations. The Tempe School was granted in 1885 a tax of 2½ cents on the hundred; this was apparently unchanged until 1893–94, when it was given two-fifths of 1 mill on the dollar, or 4 cents on the hundred of assessed valuation apparently in place of the earlier grant. This was continued in 1895 and 1896; in 1897 and 1898 it was 3 cents; in 1899 and 1900, 1½ cents; in 1903 and 1904, 2½ cents, with a second tax of 4 cents to serve as a basis for a building fund; in 1905 and 1906 it received in all 5½ cents. In each case the auditor was instructed to anticipate the incoming revenue.
The Flagstaff normal school was treated in the same general way, being given, in 1903 and 1904, 3 cents on the hundred for support and 1 cent for building; while in 1905 and 1906 it was given 1½ cents for building. The method of apportioning funds appears to have been changed about 1909, for in that year the Tempe school was given $80,000 for support for two years without any indication of the rate and the Flagstaff School $35,000.
In 1909 it was provided by law that the course of study leading to graduation from the two schools should be prescribed by the territorial board of education and after June 30, 1909, be uniform. The two institutions were then neither equal in strength nor in resources, but while the younger school is approximating such a position and while the faculties of the two are not so far apart in numbers, the Tempe School will still be able to offer superior advantages as long as its resources are substantially twice as great. This difference seems not to have been fully realized as yet by the legislative body; for the funds granted the two for the two-year period ending June 30, 1917, were, for Tempe, $180,000 for support and $29,000 for buildings and repairs; to Flagstaff, $80,000 for support and $97,043 for buildings. Only an equality of resources and equipment can make possible an equality in the results attained.
The annual expenditures of the two schools for maintenance and equipment is, according to the reports of the State auditor as follows:
|Year ending June 30.||Normal school at Tempe, maintenance.||Normal school at Flagstaff, maintenance.||Tempe improvements, buildings, etc.||Flagstaff improvements, buildings, etc.|
|1917||[Table 1] 90,000.00||[Table 1] 40,000.00||[Table 1] 14,500.00||48,521.50|
- Represents one-half the legislative appropriations for the two years 1916 and 1917.
- In addition to the above, 350,000 acres were given for matters that were only indirectly educational—for legislative, executive, and judicial public buildings, 100,000 acres; for penitentiaries, 100,000 acres; for insane asylums, 100,000 acres; for hospitals for disabled miners, 50,000 acres.
- Arizona Journal of Education, December, p. 123.
- Session of 1903, ch. 72.
- Session of 1909, ch. 106.
- See H. J., 1912, special session, pp. 142–149.
- Laws of 1913, second special session, ch. 23.
- Act of Aug. 13, 1912.
- See auditor’s reports for 1912, 1913, 1914, and 1915, where there is sharp and vigorous, but nevertheless sound and sane, criticism of this and other institutions. Indeed, quite the best criticism that has been found anywhere of the Arizona public institutions are these incidental notes of J. C. Callaghan, State auditor, 1912–1917.
- The school law of 1913 provided that the county superintendent should apportion to each district “not less than $35 per capita upon the average daily attendance” as determined in a certain way, but no district was to receive an apportionment of less than $850.
- Laws of Arizona, 1907, ch. 67, p. 100.
- Sess. acts, 1909, ch. 19, p. 40.
- Arizona Journal of Education, April, 1910, p. 31.
- Sess. acts, 1912, ch. 93.
- See program printed in Arizona Journal of Education, December, 1910, I, pp. 120–123, and a review of the proceedings in February, 1911.
- See proceedings in Arizona Teacher, vol. 5, May, 1916, pp. 8–15.
- There has been at least one county survey—that of Maricopa County—made during 1915–16 and published during the present year (Phoenix , p. 8). This survey was made at the instance of the County Teachers’ Association and the Arizona State Taxpayers’ Association, and is a strong indictment of the inefficiency of schools as conducted on a district system and strongly recommends the county unit.
- Arizona Teacher, February, 1917, pp. 15–17.
- Arizona Teacher, February, 1917, pp. 15–17.
- Session Acts, 1895, ch. 32. Certain irregularities in the organization of these high-school districts and union high-school districts were cured by ch. 40, second special session, 1913.
- Arizona Teacher, January, 1917, p. 9; and February, 1917, p. 20.
- Arizona Teacher, February, 1917, p. 29.
- Arizona Journal of Education, April, 1910, pp. 22, 38.
- Arizona Teacher, November, 1916, pp. 16–18.
- This provision was carried over into the code of 1887.
- See superintendent’s report for 1885–86.
- See Supt. Long’s report for 1906–1908, p. 69.
- Superintendent’s report, 1895–96, p. 21.
- In superintendent’s report, 1899–1900, pp. 59–61.
- Laws of Arizona, 1893, ch. 81.
- The training departments of the normal schools were made a part of the public school system by ch. 87, acts of 1909.
- Made possible under ch. 80, second special session, laws of 1913. See also code of 1913, sec. 2797.
- Sess. Laws of Arizona, 1909, ch. 58.