The School of Education

Bertha Payne
1908 The Elementary School Teacher  
It seems fitting, in this closing number of the seventh year of this Journal, to record something of the present organization, scope, and aim of the school of which it is an organ. The School of Education is soon to enter on its eighth year of activity as a professional school of the University of Chicago. Its function, the training of teachers for all grades and departments of work, has necessitated a complex organization in which many problems have confronted its organizers, some of them
more » ... e in the history of the training of teachers. That they will not long remain unique is to be presumed, as other "schools of education" are springing up in other universities. To those who are as yet unfamiliar with this kind of situation some description of this organization, and of these questions, may be of interest. Some of these problems are: First, the relation of the School of Education to the University of Chicago as a whole; second, the relation of the College of Education to the Elementary and High Schools; third, the organization of a curriculum for the Elementary and High Schools that shall be without gaps and breaks from the Kindergarten through the High School; fourth, the organization of a socialized course of study for these schools in which practical and formal control, individual purpose and social relation, initiative, and habituation, shall be kept in true proportions; fifth, the keeping of a true relation between the fine arts and the handicrafts, the humanities and the sciences. To make the first question more clear, it may be explained that the School of Education is made up of three integral divisions, the College of Education, the University High School, and the University Elementary School. While distinct in organization, the College of Education is 585 This content downloaded from on September 22, 2016 15:55:32 PM All use subject to University of Chicago Press Terms and Conditions ( ELEMENTARY SCHOOL TEACHER parallel in most respects to the Colleges of Arts, Literature, and Science. Its courses are to a certain extent interchangeable with these, on the system of credited electives. It differs greatly in this respect, that its Junior and Senior years are distinctly professional in character. It therefore is in one sense an undergraduate college, and in another a professional school, as are the schools of law and medicine. The graduate work in education is given or controlled by the Department of Philosophy and Education. With this brief statement it may easily be surmised that the problems of adjustment are not simple and that the possibilities have been realized far enough to make the future one of great interest and promise. Of all the problems catalogued above, those relating to the organization and course of study of the Elementary and High Schools contain the kernel of the present educational situation at large. These are the laboratories for the students of the College of Education, and here then lies also the vital and essential heart of our whole institution. When the School of Education was first instituted on the University campus in a temporary building, it consisted only of the College of Education and an elementary practice school, all under Colonel Parker. When it moved into its permanent building five years ago, under the directorship of Dr. John Dewey, there was added the University Elementary School which had been for some years widely known as the laboratory school for the Department of Education, developed under Dr. Dewey's management. At the same time two secondary schools were merged under the same organization and were moved under the same roof, the Chicago High and Manual-Training School, with its organizer and head, Dr. H. H. Belfield, and the South Side Academy, under Mr. William B. Owen. While this gave to the School of Education the advantage of large and well-established secondary schools as practice and experiment ground for prospective teachers in high schools, it complicated vastly the questions of organization and course of study. The opportunity is here presented of shaping an elastic and 586 This content downloaded from 129.100.058.
doi:10.1086/453765 fatcat:lfs3jbwnvjd6pcnwbw7g7e6zmm