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tion, in which he reviewed the whole field of public instruction in Virginia, from the first settling of the colony up to the present time, making many practical suggestions as to the legislation necessary to perfect and strengthen our present public free-school system-laying great stress upon Virginia's need of normal schools to educate teachers, and Teachers' Institutes to inform, improve, and strengthen those who are already engaged in teaching. In his lecture he paid a just and deserved tribute to Dr. Ruffner for his great zeal and wisdom displayed in the early formation of the system.
We applied to Dr. Curry for his address for publication; he replied, expressing regrets at not being able to furnish it, on account of lack of time to write up his notes. It would be an important addition to the public school literature of Virginia, as it is brimful of startling facts and wise suggestions. We hope the Doctor will reconsider the matter, and, when time from other pressing engagements permits, will write up the address for publication.
Census BLANKS. -Great care was taken in getting up the last blanks, for the return of census of teachers, to make the questions plain and explicit; and not content with giving specific directions on the margin of the sheets as to how each column must be filled, an additional circular was prepared and forwarded, calling special attention to the instructions; but, judging from the few returns received from superintendents, they have neither read the instructions on the margin, nor in the circular, but have gone blindly ahead, and consequently made many blunders in their answers to the plainest questions. We hope they will read the instructions and fill up the columns as directed, giving all the information required.
The returns are of no use whatever unless accurate, and they will be returned to superintendents for correction until patience is exhausted, and then the law will be allowed to take its course. Fortunately but few of the superintendents have reported the census for 1884, and, unfortunately, we have been compelled in every instance to return them for correction. Failure to give the actual age of teachers is the most prominent omission.
We have had printed a full supply of price-lists of text. books, and can furnish Superintendents the number needed.
CONFERENCE OF SUPERINTENDENTS. - Remember, that the Conference will be held in March, or if the Legislature shall not have adjourned by that time, immediately after its adjournment. Due notice of the time will be given. Many questions of great importance will be presented to the Conference, and all the Superintendents are expected to attend.
Dr. Curry promises us Teachers' Institutes again this summer, and it is desirable that the Conference shall suggest the best locations for the same. It would be well for Superintendents to thoroughly canvass the matter before the meeting of the Conference, in order to be able to state what particular inducements their respective sections will offer in the way of buildings, board, transportation facilities, &c., to secure the Institutes.
The Board of Education have sent in to the Senate for confirmation the names of the following Superintendents of Schools:
Henry C. Slaughter, Danville.
We have had occasion to send out blanks for the names, date of qualification, ending of terms, &c., of School Trustees, and from the returns received, we judge the records kept in the office of Superintendents are very deficient, as many cannot give all the information desired.
This should not be, and in future the records must be so kept that this office can obtain full information upon all matters connected with the details of the system in each county.
TEACHERS' INSTITUTES.- A Bill to amend and re-enact section 47, chapter 78 of the Code of 1873, in relation to Teachers' Institutes.Patron- Mr. Heaton, Senator.-Referred to Committee on Public Institutions and Education.— Be it enacted by the General Assembly of Virginia, That section forty-seven, chapter seventy-eight, of the Code of eighteen hundred and seventy-three, be amended and re-enacted so as to read as follows:
$ 47. The Board of Education shall have power, at its discretion, to invite and encourage meetings of teachers at convenient places, and to provide addresses to be made before such meetings, touching the processes of school organization, discipline and instruction : provided, that no public money shall be expended for the purposes of this section; that no school shall be closed during such meetings; that no teacher shall be compelled to attend such meetings, nor be paid for attendance.
The amendment proposed to the section is printed in italics, and, if adopted, will effectually prohibit the holding of Teachers' Institutes.
OUR thanks are due Hon. Howard Douglass, President of Board of Education of the School District of Cincinnati, for bound copy of annual report of said Board for school-year ending August 31, 1883.
SUPERINTENDENTS' CONFERENCE.-As we desire to make this meeting a success, we hope Superintendents and others interested will give their views as to what the programme should embrace. Let us hear from you at once.
Virginia's Students in Nashville Normal College.
UNIVERSITY OF NASHVILLE,
January 11, 1884. Hon. R. R. FARR,
State Superintendent of Public Instruction : DEAR SIR, I beg leave herewith to transmit for your inspection a
of the average rank, etc., of the students from Virginia holding Pea
body Scholarships at the Normal College, at Nashville, Tenn., for the period ending December 31st, 1883.
Virginia M. Brown...............
90 11 (ex.) 76%
8814 8 (ex.) 91 30 (ex.) 89 }
8834 2 (ex.) 88%
EBEN S. STEARNS.
"Seventy-five is a fair average, and entitles the student to continu ance in his class and progress with it.”
We are sorry to see from the above report, that some of the Virginia students are going back in their class-work. We had expected to note an improvement, and are disappointed. Won't the Virginia students do better in the future?
Department of Superintendence.
NATIONAL EDUCATIONAL ASSOCIATION.
We have received a letter from Hon. Bernard L. Butcher, President of said Department, urging us to call the attention of County and City Superintendents of Virginia to the importance of the regular annual meeting, which takes place in Washington, D. C., February the 12th, 13th, and 14th, 1884.
Many subjects of great interest to school officers will be discussed
by able and experienced educators. The following subjects and lecturers are named in the advance programme:
A. P. Marble, Superintendent of the Worcester city schools, Massachusetts, will present this subject under the head of " Public Instructiou in Industrial Pursuits.” Professor John M. Ordway, of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Boston, will present a paper under the head of “Hand-Work in Schools."
Major Robert Bingham, of Bingham School, North Carolina, will present this subject under the head of " Educational Status and Needs of the South.” Dr. J. L. M. Curry, General Agent of the Peabody Fund, Va.; Dr. J. W. Dickinson, Secretary State Board of Education, Mass. ; Dr. G. J. Orr, State Superintendent of Georgia; and Hon. LeRoy D. Brown, State Commissioner of Schools, Ohio, are expected to discuss this subject also, in its relations to National Aid.
“How Best a State Superintendent May Advance Popular Education.” Dr. E. E. Higbee, State Superintendent of Pennsylvania, will open the discussion of this subject, and be followed by a number of State Superintendents in short addresses.
The progress of Indian education will be presented by the United States Government Superintendent of Indian Education, Mr. Haworth, and will be followed in short addresses by General S. C. Armstrong, of Hampton School, Va.; Captain R. H. Pratt, of Carlisle School, Pa.; and Mr. Herbert Welsh, of Philadelphia.
RECESS OR NO RECESS.
Dr. W. T. Harris, L. D. D., of Concord, Mass., late City Superintendent of St. Louis, Mo., will read a paper favoring recess.
Professor S. A. Ellis, Superintendent of the Rochester City schools, N. Y., will present a paper advocating “No Recess.”