Thursday, July 28, 2011

Condition of Livingston County Public Schools 1907

The following information has been abstracted from the common school report found in Biennial Report of the Superintendant of Public Instruction of Kentucky, 1907. Teachers leaving their profession for more lucrative occupations was a problem just as it is today.
Smithland, Ky., October 24, 1907
The schools of Livingston county have been progressing nicely the last two years and results have been very satisfactory. The most impending danger confronting the schools now is the threatening desertion on the part of teachers from the teaching profession. Some of our best teachers are beginning to look elsewhere for better pecuniary rewards. The demands for young men and ladies of ability in other vocations are too great for teachers of rural schools to be contented with their present salaries.

The school population of Livingston county is on the decline, there being several hundred fewer pupils in the county now than a few years ago. The decline has greatly affected many of our rural schools, reducing them to the "pauper" classification. We have too many school districts, more than the number of pupils justify, and how to remedy the situation is a problem. Educational enthusiasm, however, is not on the decline. We had had a new graded school established this year, making a total of five in the county; we have had 53 common school graduates and four high school graduates; we have had our full quota at the State Norman and expect a good representation there again in the spring. We have by two students at the State College now.

The first and most important proposition confronting the schools today is how to secure more funds - better wages for teachers. We need to keep the teachers of experience in the profession.

In conclusion I must say that I believe there are better days ahead for our schools ...

Yours truly,

Charles Ferguson

Co. Supt. Livingston County.

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