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pensation actually paid to the male teachers, and thus the length of the winter school prolonged on an average of two months. Convinced, as I am, from many years observation in public schools, that these institutions will never exert the influence they should on the manners and morals of the children educated in them, till a larger number of well-trained and accomplished females are employed permanently as teachers, either as principals or assistants, I have everywhere, and on all occasions, urged their peculiar fitness for the office. I have reason to believe that at least fifty female teachers, in addition to the number employed last year, are now engaged in the public schools of the State. But before the superior efficiency of woman in the holy ministry of education, can be felt in its largest measure, her education must be more amply and universally provided for, and an opportunity afforded for some special training in the duties of a teacher, and a modification of the present practice and arrangement of districts be effected.”
“ The earlier we can establish,” says Mr. BARNARD, in his American Journal of Education, for Dec. 1856, “in every populous district, primary schools, under female teachers, whose hearts are made strong by deep religious principle,-who have faith in the power of Christian love steadily exerted to fashion anew the bad manners, and soften the harsh and selfwilled perverseness of neglected children,—with the patience to begin every morning, with but little if any perceptible advance beyond where they began the previous morning,—with prompt and kind sympathies, and ready skill in music, drawing, and oral methods, the better it will be for the cause of education, and for every other good cause.”
“ Where are we,” asks Prof. READ, “to find teachers for our schools? Here is the great difficulty. From our male population, we cannot have suitable teachers for our primary schools. There are so many other fields of enterprise in a rapidly growing community, that few young men are willing to embark in the humble, toilsome, and thankless vocation of teaching, and especially to embark in it as a profession, as a life business.
“What is the remedy? I answer, females must be employed as the teachers of all our primary schools, and as the teachers of their own sex in all schools. Is the question here asked, will not this deteriorate our schools ? I answer, no. It wilí raise them. This is uniform experience. It is, too, but the simplest justice to restore to the female sex that business for which God Almighty has peculiarly fitted them. They were designed by the great Creator himself to be the early instructors of the whole human race. What man ever knew how to
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teach children as woman? Let any one who doubts on this subject, read the reports of State Superintendents of Education, of school visitors, of all, indeed, having the oversight of public education. The visiters of the Cincinnati schools, in their report of last year to the Council of that city, declare that their experience is conclusive as to the propriety and importance of employing a very large proportion of female teachers in all their schools; that in the power of controlling and softening the feelings of their pupils, in the forming of a correct and delicate taste, and in the still higher power of giving tone to the moral sentiments, the female teacher is indispensable; and that to their corps of female teachers, they attribute a large share of the prosperity and high standing of the Cincinnati schools. In all the States, and every where, precisely as the systems of general education have been improved, has a larger proportion of female teachers been introduced into all the schools."
“Females,” says the able Report of the School Committee of Farmingham, Mass., “seem to be better adapted by nature to the work of teaching. There is more truth than hyperbole in a remark recently made to a body of teachers by Dr. Wayland, that it is a rare thing to find a man who has a gift for teaching, and it is an equally rare thing to find a woman who cannot teach well.' It is a rare thing to find men who have a peculiar tact for teaching the young. Experience evinces their adaptation to their ordinary and appropriate pursuits. A larger proportion of men are found to distinguish themselves for ability and success in other departments in life than in the profession of teaching. But a small number of male teachers leave their impress clearly marked upon their pupils. They lack the requisite patience and perseverence in little thingsthe quick discernment of character—the sympathy and sensibility to penetrate the youthful spirit and arouse its dormant faculties. Above all, they are destitute of those delicate arts which are so requisite to win the affections of children, to call forth and direct their earliest aspirations, and to impart the requisite impulse to their minds. Cheerfulness and enthusiasm, courtesy and kindness, and the power of easy, quiet, unconscious influence, are requisites indispensable to the attractiveness, order and efficiency of the school. Females are endowed with a bountiful share of these desirable qualities.
“In our high schools and colleges—where mind, in its maturing state and fuller development, is stimulated by the strongest incentives to study, and subjected to the severest discipline, and led onward into the higher departments of literature and science- it is obviously better to employ permanent male teachers. But in all elementary instruction, the very structure of
her mind fits woman for the task. Nature has marked her out for this great work. Outside of the family, she nowhere seems so truly to occupy her appropriate sphere. All her attainments and powers can here be actively and earnestly employed. The work is adapted to her mental and moral constitution. No occupation harmonizes better with her character, or yields her more genuine pleasure.
- The leading objection to the policy here advocated, is founded on the supposition that delicate and timid women will not succeed so well in the government of a school in which rough and refractory boys are gathered together. This is the most common and plausible objection, and is worthy of respectful consideration. It was formerly supposed that physical strength was a prime characteristic of a good disciplinarian, and that brute force was the chief agency in school government. The objection under consideration has some affinity to this antiquated notion. Horace Mann has well said, 'A man may keep a difficult school by means of authority and physical force; a woman can only do it by dignity of character, and such a superiority in attainment as is too conspicuous to be questioned. A silent moral power ought to reign in the school-room, rather than ostentatious and coercive measures. Its influence is more happy, effective and permanent. Corporeal punishments may be used as a dernier resort in extreme cases. But true wisdom and skill in school government consists in the prevention, rather than in the punishment, of offences—in cultivating the better feelings of our nature - truthfulness, generosity, kindness and self-respect. Such influences women are pre-eminently fitted to wield. Refined and lady-like manners, with a mellow and winning voice, will exert a peculiar sway even upon the rudest and most unmannerly youth. There is a silent power in the very face of a teacher beaming with love for her pupils, and enthusiasm in her noble work.”
“It has often been remarked,” observes Hon. H. H. BARNEY, in his Report as State School Commissioner of Ohio, in 1854, “that females make better teachers for young children than the other sex; for they have more talent for oral or conversational teaching, more quickness of perception in seizing the difficulties which embarrass the mind of a child, and more mildness of manner in removing them. They are more ingenious in introducing little devices calculated to animate and encourage children, and relieve the monotony of school exercises. They attach more importance to the improvement of morals, and pay more attention to cleanliness and good manners, than men. They have a peculiar faculty for awakening the sympathies of children, and inspiring them with a desire to excel.
They possess warmer affections, more delicate taste, greater confidence in human nature, more untiring zeal in behalf of those committed to their charge. When the mind of a child has gone astray, they will lead it back into the right path more gently and more successfully than men. 'How many a tender child is injured by the stern administration of a male teacher; by harsh decisions formed in haste, where there was not time to consider all the circumstances of the case; and by the ill-treatment and rough language of the older scholars. The intellect of children stands in need of the training which woman is best qualified to give. She paints to the imagination, when the male teacher defines the reasons. She gives form, and color, and life to what the male teacher treats as an abstract principle. The male teacher is prone to take too long steps in his instruction, to which the minds of the pupils are not yet adequate, and has not the patience to graduate his elementary instructions by so minute a scale, and to advance by so slow a pace as is required by the conditions of the young mind.'”
“Females," observes Hon. A. G. CURtin, late Superintendent of Common Schools of Pennsylvania,“ possess those delicate arts which win the love of children; their constancy and kindness, give them that easy and unconscious influence, which is indispensable to the attractiveness and efficiency of the school. The occupation is in harmony with the female character; and her ambition cannot be flattered by the hope of greater success in other branches of human pursuit. It yields her more profit than any other art or occupation; her affections are concentrated on her pupils; and her enthusiasm is excited in her noble work. Her winning voice, and smile of love, will correct where punishment would fail; and she succeeds by the cultivation of the better feelings of our nature.”
Such evidences of woman's appreciation for the teacher's office, is truly gratifying. Females are almost universally employed in the public schools of the larger cities of the Union, as principals or assistants, with salaries ranging from $350 to $700 per annum. In our own State, while nine years ago female teachers received on an average but $6 92 per month, or $82 04 per year, their wages have since attained to $15 16 per month on an average, or $181 92 per year; and, in at least one instance, to $29 00 per month, or $348 00 per year. With a more thorough preparation in our Normal Schools and Teachers' Institutes, we may confidently expect to see females take a yet higher rank in our noble army of educators, and receive an increased corresponding reward. Possessing, as woman does, a more graceful and affectionate disposition, an exhaustless patience, a keen and quick power of perception, and a ready
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adaptation to circumstances, she is eminently fitted to mould the impressible minds of youth—and for this noble office, the purity and gracefulness of her character, the generous sympathies of her nature," last at the cross and first at the grave” -point her out as the chosen of God.
I cannot, in closing the topic of females as teachers, refrain from citing the eloquent tribute to WOMAN by the historian Bancroft: “It may seem to be at variance with our theme, that as republican institutions gain ground, WOMAN appears less on the theatre of events. She, whose presence in this briary world is as a lily among thorns, whose smile is pleasant like the light of morning, and whose eye is the gate of Heaven; she, whom nature so reveres, that the lovely veil of her spirit is the best terrestrial emblem of beauty, must cease to command armies or reign supreme over nations. Yet the progress of liberty, while it has made her less conspicuous, has redeemed her into the possession of the full dignity of her nature, has made her not man's slave, but his companion, his counsellor, and fellowmartyr; and, for an occasional ascendency in political affairs, has substituted the uniform enjoyment of domestic equality. The avenue to active public life seems closed against her, but without impairing her power over mind, or her fame. The lyre is as obedient to her touch, the muse as coming to her call, as to that of man; and truth in its purity finds no more honored inter
STATE BOARD OF EDUCATION. The Constitution of our State provides, that “the supervis. ion of public instruction shall be vested in a State Superintendent, and such other officers as the Legislature shall direct.” “Public instruction” is, evidently enough, that instruction designed for the public benefit, and over which the public, through its chosen representatives in the Legislature, and other officers constituted for the purpose, have a controlling supervision and direction-hence, unquestionably, the Common Schools, the Normal Schools, and the State University. So far as the State Superintendent is concerned, he has “the supervision,” which the Constitution declares "shall be vested” in him, except in the matter of the Normal Schools, in the management of which he has only a nominal, not any actual part. These three departments of our State educational system, are under separate and distinct management; and while each department is devoted to its own special sphere, there is no general aim at concert and harmony of action and purpose in the system. It is not merely my own opinion, but that of many distinguished educators with