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History of Education in the United States
Transcript of History of Education in the United States
The Colonial Period 1642-1776
During the Colonial Period of United States History three regions developed each had its own unique education system.
The 3 regions were...
The Middle Colonies
Town schools were established in the New England colonies by Puritan Settlers beginning in the 1640s.
These schools were closely connected to the Puritan church in that the primary purpose of education was to support Puritan doctrine.
Students were expected to learn to read and write so they could better understand and study the Bible.
Parochial Schools of the Middle Colonies
Private Schools of the Southern Colonies
In the Southern colonies, the pattern of settlement made organized systems of education impractical.
Education was mostly reserved for the children of wealthy plantation owners and the gentry.
Instruction focused on reading, writing, arithmetic, the primer, and the Bible.
Less fortunate students attended charity schools where they received instruction on the “3 R’s” and a vocation.
Latin Grammar Schools
Boston Latin Grammar School
Est. Boston 1635
These schools as secondary schools during the colonial period mostly in New England attended by upper-class boys.
They were meant to prepare students for college (those entering professions: medicine, law, teaching, the ministry, business owners or becoming merchants)
Instruction focused primarily on the “Classics” with little regard to other subjects.
Latin was 3/4 of the curriculum.
The culture and society of the middle colonies (New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Pennsylvania) was shaped by heterogeneous ethnic and religious groups.
The settlement patterns of these groups made it difficult to set up an organized system for education similar to that of the New England colonies.
Parochial (religious) based schools were set up to focus instruction on reading, writing, and religion.
These institutions (1751) served as secondary schools for students not attending college.
Based on Ben Franklin's ideas.
The curriculum focused on a diverse group of subjects including the classics, English grammar, and rhetoric.
Course work served practical and vocational purposes for those preparing to enter the work force - carpentry, engraving, printing, cabinet making, farming, bookkeeping, etc...
The first colonial era colleges were Harvard (1636) and Yale University (1701). Students (13-14 years old) who attended Latin grammar schools typically continued their education at one of these two universities.
Students received education in preparation for entering the ministry or some other profession such as law or medicine.
The curriculum focused on competency in the classics (Latin, grammer, logic, rhetoric, arithmetic, astronomy, ethics, metaphysics, natural sciences along with other subjects such as astronomy, natural sciences, and ancient history.
College of William and Mary (1636)
College of Rhode Island (1764) - Brown University
Harvard University 1640
The Westminster Catechism
Colonial Era Textbooks were used to support the religious education received by colonists, especially in New England.
The Westminster Catechism (summary of principles) which included religious lessons and doctrine
The Bible would be studied for moral and religious purposes
The New England Primer - 1690: considered the first and most widely used textbook of the colonial era which religious and moral lessons such as learning the alphabet in connection with the Bible. Used for over 100 years.
New Guide to the English Tongue - 1740: the first grammar and spelling book in the colonies.
The New England Primer
The National Period: 1776-1850
During the National Period of U.S. History (emerging during the Revolutionary Period), the ideas of many leaders helped to shape curriculum and the American education system. Leaders began linking free public schooling with ideas of popular government and political freedom.
Dr. Benjamin Rush
Dr. Benjamin Rush
Dr. Rush criticized the old curriculum of the colonial era that relied heavily on the classics and advocated for a curriculum that helped to advance democracy and promoted the growth of the country.
He also advocated for free tax supported public education with elementary schools, academies, and colleges/universities.
He called for a curriculum that focused on the 3R’s at the elementary level and the arts and sciences at the secondary and post secondary levels.
Jefferson believed in an education for the masses that was also tax supported.
However, he called for scholarships to be made available to the gifted children of the poor so that they would be allowed to continue to advance their education.
His plan was for some of these to become teachers to help the system grow.
Overall, his plan promoted equality and social progress for all.
Noah Webster promoted the nationalization of the American education system. One that would break away from European styles and culture.
In order to accomplish this, he set out to nationalize American English.
His biggest contributions include The American Spelling Book and The American Dictionary.
Both works helped to nationalize the language and a sense of commonality within the U.S. education system.
McGuffey further helped to nationalize American education with the creation of his Readers. Which were the most widely used reading textbooks of his era.
They promoted American values and ideals while also helping to pave the way for the graded system of education that we have today.
Pestalozzi furthered elementary education with his ideas on linking curriculum to the experiences of children.
He called for a general and specific method of education in which teachers would provide students with security and affection while at the same time designing and carrying out lessons in which students utilized their auditory and visual senses.
The special method led to more focused lessons relating to the 3 R’s.
Herbart also criticized traditional curriculum in favor of a more diverse one which focused on history, English, math, and science.
He believed subjects should fall into the category of knowledge interests and ethical interests.
In order to better instruct students Herbart developed a process for teachers that included: Preparation, Presentation, Association, Systemization, and Application.
Teachers adopted Herbart’s process and it changed how lessons were prepared. They developed them using 5 student centered questions.
Spencer believed that education should promote societal progress through a curriculum that was practical for an industrialized society.
He believed science should be emphasized more than other subjects since it leads to societal progress.
Overall, he promoted a system of education that was practical for all people not just the upper class.
Universal Education: 1820-1920
Education opened up to the masses and the modern day form of American education began to take shape during this period of U.S. history.
New types of schools developed as others evolved and some faded in importance.
Popularized in America by immigrants in major urban areas, these schools also spread to the frontier.
The curriculum of these schools was based on rote learning and the 3 R’s were the main subjects.
The school functioned with the teacher instructing highly skilled students who became monitors of small groups that they would then instruct.
Mass education and tax supported schools were supported with these institutions.
Monitorial School 1839
Common schools (1826) started in Massachusetts and paved the way for local Boards of Education and the first state Board of Education headed by Horace Mann.
These schools provided Massachusetts students with a common universal education experience.
The schools spread to other states and became the basis for today’s public education system.
As elementary schools evolved (1842), more and more subjects were added to the curriculum.
By 1900, elementary school students received an education that included such subjects as reading, spelling, geography, physical training, and music.
Did not become widespread until the "Kalamazoo Case in 1852 (brought by 3 prominent citizens who did not want to use public funds to support high schools) which said public funds "COULD" be used to establish and support them.
This sharp increase in the number of students helped to promote the idea that a universal education is the norm for American citizens.
These schools laid the foundation for the high schools of today.
In the 1800s, the academy gradually replaced the Latin grammar school as the primary means of receiving a college preparatory education.
However, by the 1870s as the idea of a universal education for students grew, academies begin to fade as high schools replaced them.
In 1880, American High Schools were preparatory academies for college.
The universal education movement in American history culminated with the rise of the high school.
Students of all classes, ability levels, and ethnicities now learn under one roof with curricular options for all whether it is college based or technical/vocational based.
Transitional Period: 1893-1918
This period of U.S. education history was marked by a reorganization of curriculum (including a reaffirming of the traditional curriculum) at all levels as well as reforms and ideas that have shaped how education looks today.
Committee of Fifteen
The Committee of Ten
This committee was headed by Eliot and took steps that would help shape the modern high school.
The committee identified core subjects and recommended four tracks from which students could choose a career path.
The arts and vocational education were left out of the curriculum.
The Committee on
College Entrance Requirements
This committee recognized the importance of the college preparatory role of high schools.
They advocated strengthening this part of the curriculum for high schools.
This has continued to today as now more than 60% of high school graduates go on to college.
Harris and Eliot
These two men were the leading reformers of the transitional period.
They both argued for a more rigorous high school curriculum that would better prepare students for college and give all students equal access to education.
Eliot also called for standards in every subject, something that is commonplace today.
This type of education and the programs that accompany it increased during the transitional period.
Many felt that these programs helped to train an American workforce that was not going to college.
Others argued that minorities, lower class students, and immigrants were being pushed into these programs and kept out of the more academically challenging curriculum tracks.
Flexner focused on the utility (usefulness) of subjects as the basis of their inclusion in curriculum.
He argued that if it was not useful then a subject had no place in the modern curriculum.
He advocated four core subjects: science, industry, civics, and aesthetics.
Dewey argued that the purpose of education was to support the democratic goals and values of our society.
To that end, no subject was considered to be inherently more valuable than another because they can all help students to develop.
However, he did consider science to be a priority.
Judd analyzed curriculum with scientific studies and statistical research.
He found that the best curriculum was one that was applicable to the modern world and helped people to become successful adults.
The function of the curriculum was to prepare students to face real world problems.
Commission on Reorganization of Secondary Education
This commission was set up by the NEA and called for revisions and changes to the education system in America that led to the system we currently have today.
Schools were to serve all students with a diversified curriculum that emphasized a common nationality.
Traditional education began to decline with this movement and schools began to take the form they have now.
Bobbitt and Charters
Both of these reformers advocated curriculum changes that reflected efficiency.
Bobbitt and Charters called for the organization of courses and subjects with clearly defined objectives and activities.
The ideas of these men were the forerunner of our national and state standards and objectives that are the focus of teacher planning today.
William H. Kilpatrick
Kilpatrick developed the Project Method of curriculum development in which he rejected the ideas set forth by the Committee of Ten in favor of a form of curriculum developed by teachers and students.
The function of the curriculum, in his view, is to develop the child and prepare them for society.
NSSE (National Society for the Study of Education) committee that included 12 of the progressive leaders of curriculum development of the era created this publication.
This progressive publication sharply criticized traditional education and curriculum.
It also outlined the ideal curriculum with 9 guidelines.
Rugg and Caswell
Rugg advocated for curriculums to be developed by the educational professionals and to not be based on students’ input.
Caswell regarded curriculum as the basis from which teachers instruct students. His focus was on improving instruction.
Caswell developed a process for curriculum making that centered around seven questions.
This study was launched by the Progressive Education Association with the goal of proving that a curriculum designed around student needs and interests was just as effective as the traditional curriculum.
The most lasting aspect of the study was the need for evaluation of a curriculum’s objectives in order to prove its effectiveness.
Tyler is most notable for his book Basic Principles of Curriculum and Instruction in which he outlined basic questions that needed to be answered in order to develop a curriculum for a given subject or grade.
Goodlad advocated teacher input in curriculum development.
He felt its purpose was to help students reach their potential and to help promote societal values.
He conducted studies to see if the school reform movements had really affected classroom education and he concluded that most reforms did not change education and that curriculum was still very much rooted in traditional forms and not very successful.
Charity Schools for freed slaves opened up in Philadelphia
United States Constitution adopted without any reference to education.
English High School of Boston 1821 - One of the first public high schools in America.
This committee adopted ideas based on the influences of Charles Eliot and William Harris.
They reaffirmed the traditional curriculum, reduced the amount of time spent on subjects such as music, shortened elementary school, and called for the introduction of certain subjects as certain grade levels.
Significant Events in the Movement Toward
Educational Equality from 1954
1954 - Supreme Court makes school segregation unconstitutional in
Brown V. Board of Education (separate is NOT equal),
overturning Plessy "separate but equal" from 1896.
1964 - Congress passes the Civil Rights Act, which
prohibits discrimination in school programs and activities
that receive federal assistance.
1972 - Congress passes Title IX Education Amendment
outlawing discrimination based on sex.
1975 - Congress passes Education for All Handicapped Children
German philosopher known for contributions to moral development in education
Main goal of his education was to produce a good person who had many interests
Had 5 types of ideas as foundations of moral character: inner freedom, perfection, benevolence, justice, and retribution
1852 - Massachusetts established the first
compulsory attendance law
1857 - NEA (National Education Association)
1873 - St. Louis opened the first public
kindergarten in United States