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Lochner, Louis P. (ed.) / Wisconsin alumni magazine
Volume 12, Number 2 (Nov. 1910)

Elliott, Edward C.
The training of teachers,   pp. [51]-54


Page 52


THE WISCONSIN ALUMNI MAGAZINE
that the university would make a
substantial contribution to the so-
lution of the problem  of teachers
for the common    schools.  These
hopes were never realized, notwith-
standing the sporadic efforts made
in 1856-1858, and again in 1863.,
      PROFESSOR EDWARD ELLIOTT
It may be that there are some
among the older alumni who retain
recollections of the old normal de-
partment, which ceased to have ex-
istence .after 1866. If so, it will
not be difficult to recall one of the
chief objections that were raised in
opposition to it, an objection that,
while then prevailing, in this day
and age comes to us as belonging
to the sere and yellow past. Said
the report of the board of regents
for 1865,-" The faculty are of the
opinion that the normal depart-
ment has made the university a
more useful institution during the
past three years than otherwise it
could have been. It is not, how-
ever, to be disguised that among
former students' of the university,
and among leading ones now in the
institution, there has been a strong
feeling of opposition to the depart-
ment on the' ground of its bringing
females into the university. There
has been an apprehension that the
standard of culture would be low-
ered thereby." And then this de-
lightful qualification,-"No reason
whatever has as yet existed for this
apprehension," which would ap-
pear to possess the logic of later
history. In June, 1910, there were
graduated from the university, one
hundred and sixty-nine students
who were entering upon the work
of teaching; of these twenty-six
were men and one hundred and
forty-three were women!
'This is not intended to be an ex-
cursion into academic geology. If
it were, more time and space than
are now available would be needed
to describe the series of efforts that
were made, in the interests of those
who must, or would, use the uni-
versity career as the gateway to
teaching. With or without the his-
torical sequence of things, even the
briefest mention of teacher train-
ing in the university would be lack-
ing without a mention of Professor
J. W. Stearns, who for nearly two
decades following 1885, labored in
.52


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