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Your pathetic university program today and in the broadcast to follow is based upon the story of education published but Chilton book from June 1962 co-author with your narrator was Dr. Eugene Moleski an assistant superintendent in charge of a teacher recruitment for the New York City Board of Education. By presenting these excerpts from our book The Story of education we are hoping that you our listening audience may be better able to understand the whys and the wherefores of our own American schools. Our topic today essentially lets take education as sensualism is a recently coined term for moderate conservatism. But what it stands for is not limited to the 20th century in every stage of educational history the conservatives have played an important and sometimes valuable part. The 20th century leader of this movement in America for more than 30 years was William Chandler Bagley of teacher's college whose theory placed rather than a heavy emphasis upon the induction of each generation into its
social heritage as the primary function of the school he sought to stabilize educational aims and methods by emphasizing the tried and true inexperience. Bagley feared the dissipation of educational energies. When the teacher pays too much attention to individual differences he thought school work should emphasize what is common or essential to all. And naturalistic analysis of the social heritage not metaphysics or theology should be used to determine what is essential. Freelance progressive schools coming into existence after 1910 as a product of the Parker do it influence almost immediately met the opposition of conservative education workers. The charge is that such a philosophy is basically weak and that it tends to sacrifice the social heritage of. Many progressive schools in the 1920s and 30s were accused of coddling pupils and catering to their passing interest.
Criticism was leveled especially at the lack of discipline and bad manners among children train the so-called progressive way. And also at their failure to grasp. The fundamentals. Even today in classrooms to some school that lay with the South progressive visitors may be shocked to see youngsters standing on their heads making faces. In fact doing anything to gain the center stage. Also much effective ammunition for opponents of progressive education was furnished by teachers and parents who claim that laying hands on a child no matter how much he may need that type of correction is to ruin for ever his personality. The indictments against progressive education word that it made schooling a famine and. That teachers used too many lollipops in trying to get pupils to learn. The critics would direct more attention to disciplined systematic work and mastery of fundamentals. And other words values a rather formal teaching
procedures were stressed. Those critics argued that mass education had opened the doors for schooling above the elementary level to those who in previous generations would not have had such opportunities. Nazri This resulted in the lowering of educational standards. By stressing people interest freedom experience initiated and by discrediting effort that's been race experience logical sequence teacher initiated a progressive education merely rationalized its compromise with a difficult teaching situation. Those critics hardly disapprove the tendency to abandon grade standards by adopting a policy of promoting each pupil whether or not that people had earned promotion. What we call social promotion today. Critics have called that logical chronological and causal relationships are being ignored in favor of incidental learning. To them the work of the progressive schools lacks
system and organization which fact reflected itself in the pupils who are in general scatterbrained instead of conscientious independent thinkers. However the progressive education movement apparently thrived on the attacks of its opponents who were numerous but organized into the 1930 a Lennox city meeting of the American Association of School Administrators. Bagley had long been recognized as a general or Samoa in the battle against excesses of the progressive school of thought to avoid the stigma that attach itself to conservatives and traditions as words. Bagley in that preliminary conference planning a new organizations suggested that they use the term stalwart. He did not want to give the idea that the new group represented the type of teacher who stubbornly holds on to antiquated methods. Even in the face of both scientific data and common sense. The designation of essential is that finally did gain acceptance was coined by
Michael Graham a scale each growing out of these discussions there was formulated a platform including a statement of principles for the a senseless Committee for the Advancement of American education which came into existence at that 1938 school administrator's convention. And an authorized interview between a committee member and the press resulted in several sections of the Bagley manifesto being published in newspapers with a sensational slant. Front page headlines such as Bagley declares war on Dewey locks the new movement prematurely with the progressive soon hitting back with charges a red baiting and reactionaries. The Assange list progress is claimed. We're proposing to Hitler rises schools. Bagley himself found it necessary to go into the newspapers to assert that he can so they do it the greatest educator of modern times. For several years there after the controversy raids and the radio and popular magazines as well as in professional journals. There was so
much interest in fact that the Gallup poll made a survey a public opinion on the question. The US Census charges the difficult subjects because they are exact and exacting had been discredited in order to promote easier weapons. They attacked especially the social studies. Furthermore the tendency to Bill curricula that fit local and provincial needs they said ignores the essential unity of the American people who thanks to private automobiles and low cost public transportation are the most mobile in the entire world. The Census held that the major task of Americans living in a modern world is to preserve the democratic forms of government which are characteristic of our culture. Our freedom demands that we pay the price a systematic and sustained effort devoted to mastery of materials. The significance to which at the time must be taken on faith.
Not only does the immature learner have the right to the guidance and direction of his elders but he needs that guidance. A consequence of the extended period of human to maturity that distinguishes man from the animals. According to a census it is the duty of formal education to transmit the ideals ideas meanings and understandings which constitute the American cultural heritage and which are so essential to the perpetuation of our democracy. A census held that the subjects necessary for an effective educational program are reading writing numbering and knowledge of the world beyond our own community and understanding of the story of America health the fine arts and the industrial arts and a democratic system of education needs to include a specific program of these studies. They went even further in advocating that there should be agreement on a nationwide scale are the order and grade placement of subjects in
major topics. Such as a nationwide plan. A senseless believed would go far towards solving the problems of children continuously transferring from school to school often times from state to state. Accuracy thoroughness persistence and good workmanship should be encouraged rather than ridicule. To achieve these ends teachers and not pupils should be held responsible for carrying out the instructional programme. Admittedly failure is an unpleasant experience for a child and repetition of a grade in many cases is ineffective however far more often than not the possibility of failure and repetition is the stimulus that keeps the learner to his task. Naturally in due time the progressive prepared a variety of replies to refute these attacks by the senseless. Many were ready to agree that the fundamental subjects must play an important part in a modern school program.
A fact that had been so completely ignored by the extreme progressive. However those progressives held that a mastery of fundamentals is merely a means to an end. That for each individual the real goal in life is an integrated personality. They pointed out that over emphasis on fundamentals tends toward a dry year and sterile formalism which defeats its own purpose. Therefore said these moderate progressives since learning is a modification of conduct or behavior through rich experiences in a controlled environment it proceeds most effectively when emphasis is laid upon the learner rather than upon school subjects. The only affective type of discipline they held is that which is exercised by the learner upon himself. It was noteworthy that the leaning a census were quick to defend progressive education against unfair attacks. Particularly during the war years when it was
made the scapegoat for all the weaknesses of the social structure. Those essential listing defenders pointed out that in many instances where pupils were shown as being below par as measured by standardized tests there were significant factors involving other than the use of informal school methods. Among these were the poor salaries of teachers in comparison with incomes of other vocational groups causing many of the more capable teachers to shift to more lucrative positions. Also held partly responsible for such conditions where the necessity of employing substandard teachers. The fact that some teachers are holding down two jobs with a consequent loss of classroom efficiency neglected children at home resulting from both parents working the increasing number of broken families and the continuous influx into the better districts of underprivileged children coming from states with inferior school systems. Many progressive leaders thanked
Bagley and a census for their careful and honest appraisal of educational problems as they saw them continuously hammering away at the need for irony and education. I sense this reminded Americans of the social economic crisis they were facing a real service had been performed and their unwillingness to let us forget the democracy is distinctly on trial. That in a complex society like ours. Social Security like responsible freedom is a conquest and not a gift. A literate electorate is absolutely indispensable in a democratic society. As sensible as I'm held that in each generation the school must teach all its pupils a common core of ideas and ideals representing the most precious elements of the human heritage be essential as demanded by the essential as it were merely the arts of recording computing measuring sort of a speaking
acquaintance of man with his past. Actually it is difficult to classify schools according to the ideology and methodology of their teachers. Most faculties vary in degree between the limits of extremely traditional and completely progressive. Moreover both types of teaching are usually found in the same school even among the faculty in the same building one observes teachers whose methods are traditional middle of the way or extremely progressive and instructor in the span of several years or even a single year month or day may reflect varying degrees of conservative or progressive ideology. The almost endless variety of classroom situations demands a multiple approach in teaching of the modern child by modern teaching. For modern learning it must be remembered there are certain things that are permanent in society social constants. And there are other things that are changing
in societies social variables. The careful educational think you must learn to distinguish between the constant and the variable between that which is universally accepted and that which is controversial. He must learn to make the distinction between the task of adjustment and the task of guidance. He must not carry social traditionalism our social experimentation too far.
The story of education
Essentialistic education
Producing Organization
KOAC (Radio station : Corvallis, Or.)
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University of Maryland (College Park, Maryland)
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Episode Description
This program presents an overview of essentialistic education.
Series Description
This series presents various excerpts from the book, "The Story of Education," which traces the evolution of education. The excerpts are read by the book's co-author, Dr. Carroll Atkinson.
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Narrator: Atkinson, Carroll, 1896-1988
Producing Organization: KOAC (Radio station : Corvallis, Or.)
AAPB Contributor Holdings
University of Maryland
Identifier: 64-38-19 (National Association of Educational Broadcasters)
Format: 1/4 inch audio tape
Duration: 00:13:25
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Chicago: “The story of education; Essentialistic education,” 1965-01-01, University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed June 21, 2024,
MLA: “The story of education; Essentialistic education.” 1965-01-01. University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. June 21, 2024. <>.
APA: The story of education; Essentialistic education. Boston, MA: University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from