Imagini ale paginilor
PDF
ePub

mental to the general school funds granted under restrictions either for the purpose of assisting localities to carry out their educational ideals or to meet their pressing educational needs. When a State offers funds for the purpose of enabling localities to meet pressing needs, the usual restriction is that the maximum tax specified by law must have been levied before State aid will be granted. When aid is offered for the purpose of assisting localities to carry out their educational ideals, there are other conditions attached, the most common of which is that localities must first raise a certain sum by taxation, subscription, or otherwise, to be devoted to the purpose for which State aid is desired.

In granting State aid under existing practices a State may make annual appropriations, biennial appropriations, or it may make special appropriations. It may enact that an order be drawn directly upon the State treasury, or it may designate the special State fund or funds from which the aid is to be drawn; it may retain each year from the general distribution of State school moneys a certain amount, or it may make provision for State aid only when a balance remains from the regular apportionment of school moneys.

Usually, State aid is granted in annual installments, the gross annual amount available for distribution among localities for any one purpose being limited by legislative action. The provision is also rather generally made that, if the amount of State aid appropriated is insufficient to aid all schools to the full extent of their needs, the amount available is either to be prorated among all the schools that have complied with conditions thereto or else to be distributed among districts which are in greatest need.

State aid is granted in 34 States.1 The purposes for which aid is granted vary, comprising the following: (1) Maintenance of a minimum school term, including an equalization of educational advantages; (2) employment of qualified teachers and the payment to teachers of a minimum salary; (3) establishment and maintenance of school libraries; (4) erecting and furnishing schoolhouses; (5) supplying free textbooks; (6) establishment and maintenance of local school supervision; (7) extension of elementary school work or enlargement of the sphere of public elementary education; (8) improvement of rural school conditions, including improvement of rural schools, the establishment of graded schools, consolidation of schools, and provision for transportation; (9) increase in the average length of the school term; and (10) support of teachers' institutes.

Grants of State aid for each of the preceding purposes are closely restricted by State legislation. Owing to the varying character of

1 Alabama, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma. Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin.

these restrictions, they are grouped for purpose of analysis under (a) general restrictions and (b) restrictions as to the amount of aid granted.

MAINTENANCE OF SCHOOLS.

One of the main purposes for which State aid is granted is the rather general one of the maintenance of public schools, including an equalization of educational advantages. In granting aid for such purpose, central authority has a wide field for effective operation. At the present time 17 States adopt this policy.

General restrictions.-In 14 of these States,' aid is proffered when localities are financially unable to live up to the requirements of the law. So far as the three remaining States are concerned, in Connecticut and Vermont aid is granted when localities actually have lived up to all the requirements of the law; in Nevada, only to districts formed after the regular apportionment of funds has been made, provided the new district has employed a competent teacher and secured a proper building. As to the 14 States included in the larger group, in 12 of them aid is granted only when localities have levied the maximum amount required by law; in Montana, the regular tax must have been levied, and in North Carolina, a specified tax. In Colorado, Indiana, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, and North Carolina still other conditions are attached to the grants.

Restrictions as to amount.-The amount of aid varies: In Colorado, Maine, North Carolina, Rhode Island, Vermont, and West Virginia, special appropriations ranging from $5,000 to $250,000 in the aggregate are made annually. In Connecticut, localities receive such an amount as will enable them to expend $25 for each child in average attendance; in Idaho, 50 per cent of any amount remaining from the regular apportionment of school moneys; in Indiana, Mississippi, Nebraska, and New Mexico, an amount necessary to bring the school term up to the minimum; in Kansas, threefourths of the difference between the amount necessary to maintain the minimum term and the annual income of the district from all sources; in Maine, in unorganized townships, so much of the interest on the reserve land fund as added to the per capita tax will pay the expenses of the schools; in Missouri, an amount sufficient to make up the deficit in maintaining schools for eight months, up to a maximum of $80 per district; in Montana, from the proceeds of a State levy an amount equal to 5 per cent of 1 mill, for extending the school term beyond six months; in Nevada, an amount sufficient to pay teachers' salaries in districts formed after the regular apportionment has been made. In Tennessee, 10 per cent of the general education fund is set aside as a special fund, a part of which is used for equalizing school terms throughout the State.

EMPLOYMENT OF

QUALIFIED TEACHERS AND THE PAYMENT ΤΟ TEACHERS OF A MINIMUM SALARY.

State aid is granted in eight States, either on a basis of teacher efficiency or on a basis of minimum salary.

General restrictions.-In adopting this policy, three States 2 place a premium upon teacher efficiency by making it worth while for localities to employ only well-qualified teachers; and five States 3 assist localities to pay to teachers at least a minimum

1 Colorado, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Maine, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Carolina, Rhode Island, Tennessee, West Virginia.

2 Minnesota, New Hampshire, Wisconsin.

3 Colorado, Ohio, Rhode Island, Utah, West Virginia.

salary for the minimum term. On the first basis, teacher efficiency is determined by the grade of certificate held or by the quality of the teaching work done; on the second, localities, in order to receive State aid, must show that they have, among other things, levied the maximum tax and that funds are still insufficient to pay the minimum salary.

Restrictions as to amount.-In Minnesota, the amount of aid granted ranges from $75 to $150 per teacher annually, according to the grade of certificate held; in New Hampshire, it is $2 per teacher per week; and in Wisconsin, $50 per school annually for three years. In Ohio, Utah, and West Virginia the grant is a sum sufficient to pay teachers the minimum salary for the minimum term; in Colorado, not more than $60,000 of the State public-school income fund may be used for this purpose; in Rhode Island, the State pays one-half the excess $400 is over the salary paid prior to the passage of the minimum-salary law.

SCHOOL LIBRARIES.

Grants of State aid for the establishment and maintenance of elementary school libraries are made in 11 States.1 In only one State is aid granted for the purchase of books for teachers and the establishment of a pedagogical library.

General restrictions.-The conditions attached to such grants may be met very easily, the most general one being that when localities (generally through patrons and friends of the school) raise a specified sum, the State contributes a like or otherwise stated amount; in four States3 the county or district is also required to appropriate an additional sum. In five States, the books must be selected from lists approved by central authorities-the State superintendent, the State board of education, or the State high-school board-and the libraries must be governed by rules laid down by the same authorities.

4

Restrictions as to amount.—The amounts granted range from $10 to $20 annually for establishment of libraries and $5 and $10 annually for maintenance. In Alabama, Maryland, and Virginia, $10 is granted annually; in Connecticut, North Carolina, and South Carolina, $10 for establishment and $5 for maintenance; in Connecticut, if there are more than 100 pupils, $10 additional for establishment and $5 additional for maintenance for every 100 or fractional part of 100 pupils in excess of the first 100; in New Jersey and Tennessee, $20 for establishment and $10 for maintenance; in New York, $18 for establishment and $2 additional per teacher employed for the legal term; in Minnesota, one-half the purchase price, not exceeding $20 for the first year and $10 for any subsequent year; in Rhode Island, one-half the amount expended at the rate of $10 per school, not exceeding $200 in any one town. In New Jersey, $100 is granted annually for the establishment of a county teachers' library and not less than $50 or more than $100 annually for maintenance.

ERECTING AND FURNISHING SCHOOLHOUSES.

In New Mexico, when the regular income of a school district is insufficient to maintain school for five months, application may be made to the State for funds to build a schoolhouse or to complete or properly furnish a schoolhouse. If the State superintendent and

1 Alabama, Connecticut, Maryland, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia.

* New Jersey.

3 Alabama, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia.

4 Maryland, Minnesota, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia.

the attorney general approve the application, the State pays not more than $300 for building or completing a schoolhouse nor more than $50 for furnishing a schoolroom, provided the district furnishes in labor or money at least one-third of the cost of construction, completion, or furnishing, and procures title in fee simple to the site. Any district receiving such aid must, when there is a surplus remaining in the funds after the expenses for maintaining a five months' term have been paid, pay such surplus to the State until the amount advanced has been refunded.

FREE TEXTS.

In Missouri, whenever provision is made for the furnishing of free texts to all pupils in at least the first four grades in the public schools of a district, the county subapportions annually to each such school district from the county foreign insurance tax moneys received from the State an amount to be determined by multiplying the number of children on the last enumeration list by the ratio used by the State auditor in making the distribution of such moneys among the counties of the State.1

LOCAL SCHOOL SUPERVISION.

Requests on the part of localities and interest on the part of the States have popularized the custom of granting State aid for local supervision, of which there are two forms, (1) county, town, or district supervision, and (2) union supervision. The States which grant aid for county, town, or district supervision are Connecticut, Maine, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, Tennessee, and Vermont. In the same group of States, excepting Tennessee but including Massachusetts and New Hampshire, the legislatures also grant aid to localities forming a union for supervisory purposes.

4

General restrictions.-The conditions attached to grants for county, town, district, or union supervision are simple and similar in the nine States 2 in which aid is given for such purpose. In seven of these States,3 there must be a certain number of schools maintained, a certain number of teachers employed, or a certain population; in seven the superintendent or supervisor employed must possess certain qualifications, and in five he must devote all of his time to superintendence; in seven it is specified that a considerable portion of the salary of the superintendent must be paid by the employing local unit.

Restrictions as to amount.-The amount of aid granted ranges from $350 upward; in Tennessee the maximum amount of aid toward the salary of a county superintendent is $350, and toward the salary of a supervisor an amount not exceeding what is paid

1 A school district containing an incorporated town or city is not entitled to such aid.

2 Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, TennesVermont.

see,

Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont.

4 Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New York, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Vermont.

6 Maine, New Jersey, New York, Tennessee (for maximum aid), Vermont (for maximum aid).

6 Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Vermont.

for such purpose by the county board of education; in New Jersey $600 is granted annually toward the salary of a superintendent and $400 toward the salary of an assistant superintendent; in Rhode Island the amount granted is $750; in Connecticut, Maine, and New York the amount granted is $800, or not exceeding $800; in Massachusetts the amount is $1,250; in Vermont the maximum amount is $1,300; in New Hampshire the State pays one-half of the superintendent's salary.

ENLARGEMENT OF THE SPHERE OF PUBLIC ELEMENTARY EDUCATION.

In the solution of current social problems, the public elementary school has been called upon to broaden its curriculum and to offer increasing advantages. Such enlargement of the scope of the elementary school has been encouraged in 15 different States1 by grants of State aid. In this extension, localities, as a rule, take the initiative by introducing and maintaining special courses of instruction. States respond, not only in a financial way, but by the selection of certain central authorities, usually the State superintendent of schools and the State board of education, to supervise and direct the instruction and expenditures. The extension of elementary school work includes such phases as vocational education, including manual training; the establishment and maintenance of day schools for the deaf or for the deaf and the blind; the establishment and maintenance of evening schools; the compilation and teaching of local history and local geography; and provision for medical inspection of schools.

VOCATIONAL EDUCATION, INCLUDING MANUAL TRAINING.

The most frequent form of public elementary school extension is the introduction and maintenance of vocational education, including manual training. Ten States 2 make annual grants for such purpose.3

General restrictions.-The conditions attached to the grants refer mainly to the maintenance of a minimum school term, equipment of buildings, courses of study, and qualifications of teachers. In all of the States, except Tennessee, the schools or their courses of instruction must have the approval of central authorities—the State superintendent, the State board of education, or the State high-school board.

Restrictions as to amount.-State aid for the purposes under consideration is sometimes granted as a definite sum and sometimes as a sum proportionate to the amount raised by the locality concerned.

In Indiana the grant is toward the salary of a county agent appointed to encourage practical education in agriculture and domestic science; one-half the amount paid by the county for such purpose is granted, such aid not to exceed $1,000 annually per county.

In Vermont, when a grammar school has been maintained with a course in manual training, $250 a year is granted.

1 Connecticut, Kansas, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Rhode Island, Vermont, Wisconsin.

2 Indiana, Maine, Maryland, Minnesota, Montana, North Dakota, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Vermont, Wisconsin.

3 A number of States grant aid for vocational schools which are open to children over 14 years of age, irrespective of their completion of elementary school work. Such legislation is not included in this study.

« ÎnapoiContinuă »