History of American Schools

Timeline created by ntomco
In History
  • Average length of time in school = 80 days

  • Thomas Jefferson proposed public education

    Thomas Jefferson proposed public education
    Jefferson suggested a radical proposal to "rake the geniuses from the rubbish" by providing Americans with three years of public education. This would not include girls or slaves. Jefferson did not have support to implement this plan.
  • 1/2 NYC residents foriegn born

    1/2 NYC residents foriegn born
    Many of these residents were poor, Irish Catholics looking for educational opportunity. Schools were highly slanted against Irish and Catholics.
  • Great School Debates of NYC

    Inspired by Hughs, an Irish immigrant who argued the injustice of public schools, debates continued over how public money should be spent to accommodate everyone. Hughs and many others wanted seperate money to teach their children about their own faith.
  • Philidelphia Bible Riots

    Philidelphia Bible Riots
    In response to Irish Catholic campaigns for a better life, a Catholic church was burned and many were left dead.
  • Petition to recall segregation in Boston schools

    Black schools were in disrepair. The Smith school was in shambles, but despite numerous reports, there had been no action to improve it.
  • Catherine Beecher advocated that women are better suited to become educators than men

    Catherine Beecher advocated that women are better suited to become educators than men
    The classroom began to have a more feminine touch. Many colleges were created for women to become teachers on the frontier. This became a new noble profession for upper class women, though many became lonely out west. Many of their new neighbors were illiterate and uneducated.
  • Sarah Roberts denied admission to a white school in Boston

    In response, the Roberts' family sued the district. Many blacks disagreed with this move because they did not want to attend school with whites. They wanted seperate, equal schools.
  • Massachussettes Supreme Court rules against Sarah Roberts

    Massachussettes Supreme Court rules against Sarah Roberts
  • Segregated schools abolished in MA

  • Post-civil war states required to provide public education

    New towns used schools as a way to attract settlers to the area.
  • 7.6 million American students enrolled in school

  • 12.7 million American students enrolled in school

  • John Dewey wrote "The School and Society"

    John Dewey wrote
    Dewey attacked the status quo and called for reform. He believed that learning should be interactive and students should be engaged. He also argued that social reform begins in schools.
  • 50% of American children were attending school.

  • Emerson School in Gary Indiana

    Emerson School in Gary Indiana
    In this school, children were in constant motion. They had split-shifts and numerous activities. Students were able to explore interests. The school had many resources, including a pool, athletic fields, and even a zoo. The school was designed by Wart, Dewey's disciple.
  • 2 million children were working in America

    Many families saw more value in their children earning money than attending school.
  • Lewis Termin published Binet-Simon Scale (IQ test)

    Lewis Termin published Binet-Simon Scale (IQ test)
    Termin pushed for IQ testing to track students and soldiers. He was a eugenist, and his IQ test was culturally biased.
  • Gary school plan implemented in NYC

    The Gary plan stirred up controversy, as many thought the design was intended to shape children into industrial workers. Riots broke out, and John Highland won the mayorship. Highland removed the Gary plan from the curriculum.
  • 17% of 17 year olds graduated high school

    17% of 17 year olds graduated high school
  • Post WWII

    More children than ever were enrolled in school. Schools became social centers for adolescents, and the high numbers required new subjects. Examples include Hygiene, Family Life, Health, and Dating.
  • Primary schools in Topeka, KS, segregated. High school was integrated with seperate activities.

    Primary schools in Topeka, KS, segregated. High school was integrated with seperate activities.
    Many black educators were highly qualified because they could not get jobs elsewhere.
  • 3/5 of American students graduated; 50% of graduates attended college.

    Still no women's scholarships. 72% of disabled students were not in school. Black schools had few resources.
  • Rev. Brown attempted to enroll his daughter, Linda, in a nearby white school.

    Linda was rufused admission. This effort was encouraged by the NAACP in Topeka, KS.
  • Arthur Bestor published Educational Wastelands

    Arthur Bestor published Educational Wastelands
    Critisized schools and called for the return of basic subjects.
  • Supreme Court unanimously rules that segregation is unconstitutional

    Supreme Court unanimously rules that segregation is unconstitutional
    Seperation was ruled inherently inequal, and segregation was banned. Many southern black teachers lost their jobs upon integration of schools.
  • Little Rock Integration Crisis

    Little Rock Integration Crisis
    Arkansas governor called in the National Guard to prevent black students from attending a white high school, although segregation had been outlawed for three years. President Eisenhower called in federal troops. High schools were shut down in the city for an entire year.
  • National Defense of Education Act

    Signed into law after the Russians launched Sputnik. With the fear that American students were falling behind in math and science, funding was increased in these areas. The goal was to prevent the Russians from winning the space race.
  • Lyndon Johnson became president of the USA

    Lyndon Johnson became president of the USA
    Johnson was a former educator and sought to improve education for minorities.
  • 90% of black students still in segregated schools

    90% of black students still in segregated schools
    Many states defied Supreme Court ruling (Brown vs. Board of Education). Southern states argued for states' rights.
  • Civil Rights Act

    Ensured equality for minorities and women in public institutions. Very important for schools. Schools could lose funding if they did not comply, but they would receive more government money if they did.
  • Elementary and Secondary Education Act

    This law increased funding to disadvantaged schools. It also gave the government the power to enforce integration.
  • 75% of Mexican American Texans dropped out of school by the 8th grade

  • Most Crystal City, TX students were Mexican American

    Speaking Spanish was not allowed in school Students were treated poorly by teachers.
  • Bilingual Education Act

    Signed by President Johnson, the act allowed for students to receive special instruction until they were prepared to receive lessons in English.
  • Jose Gutierrez returned to his home town, Crystal City, TX

    He helped write student demands to teachers. Mexican American students wanted respect, and when their request was dismissed by the school board, they striked. Federal mediators were called in to help facilitate discussions. In the end, protestors shifted their efforts toward the school board elections.
  • Crystal City, TX: 4 of 7 school board seats held by Mexican Americans

    Gutierrez was elected president.
  • Crystal City, TX: 170 dropouts returned to school

    Schools embraced Mexican heritage.
  • Title IX

    Title IX mandated that any institution receiving government money needed to provide equal opportunities to men and women.
  • Kenny Lau vs. San Francisco

    Kenny Lau vs. San Francisco
    Despite the overwhelming Chinese population of San Francisco schools, schools were taught in English only. The Supreme Court ruled that this was in violation of the Civil Rights Act. As a result, the federal government invested in teacher materials for minorities.
  • National Association for Bilingual Education is born

  • East Harlem, NYC: Junior high students chose their school.

    East Harlem, NYC: Junior high students chose their school.
    East Harlem had some of the worst schools in the NYC district. A radical attempt was made at reform. Failing schools were shut down.
  • President Reagan announces and Educational Crisis

    President Reagan announces and Educational Crisis
    Despite a steady improvement in education and a steep acceleration of previously ignored groups, Reagan declares an Educational Crisis. Economic concerns were placed on schools, which led to more testing. From 1983-84, USA spent $500 million dollars on assessment.
  • East Harlem schools outperformed 1/2 NYC schools

  • Small number of Milwaukee students (1%) attended private school with public money

    Small number of Milwaukee students (1%) attended private school with public money
    Highly controversial. The private schools were non-religious. Many, but not all, of these private schools had double the graduation rate of public schools. This option was only available to a relatively small number of students.
  • George Bush called for vouchers

    George Bush called for vouchers
    Vouchers would pay for students to enroll in a private school with taxpayer money. The argument was that competition would lead to better public education.
  • NYC parents were given the option of any school for their children

    This was difficult to implement due to logistics of transportation.
  • Baltimore, MD hired EIA to manage 9 public schools

    Baltimore, MD hired EIA to manage 9 public schools
    Used the same amount of money per student as public schools. EIA contracted out many services to reduce cost/ increase profits. Test scores weren't any better than public schools, and arts and special needs services were drastically reduced.
  • Debate began: Should vouchers be used in religious schools

    Many argued that this would be unconstitutional as it was a violation of the separation of church and state.
  • Vouchers allowed in religious schools in Clevland, OH

    3/4 of eligible students who used the vouchers were already enrolled in these schools.
  • EIA formed charter schools in AZ

  • Congress spent $80 million dollars on charter school funding.

  • Milwaukee allowed voucher use at religious schools

    Milwaukee allowed voucher use at religious schools
  • Almost 90% of American children were enrolled in public school.

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    Jefferson's public education rejected three times!

    People wanted state regulation of education, and they also did not want higher taxes to pay for schools.
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    Horace Mann advocated for public schools in MA

    Mann visited 1,000 schools and found inequality. Rural schools had outdated and irrelevant texts. He wanted to standardize public schools, but was highly opposed by those who did not want to see an increase in taxes.
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    Principals removed Irish slurs from textbooks

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    22 million immigrants (3 million children) come to America

    After a steamship would arrive in New York City, 125 new students would enroll in school. Schools were dark, crowded, cold, and full of illness.
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    2/3 of Italian children left school

    A good Italian child went to work to help the family. Education was not valued in most Italian homes.
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    Ellwood Cubberley advocated for career tracking in public schools

    Cubberley believed that the goal of school should be job training, not necessarily education. College bound courses were designed for the highly intelligent only.
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    All schools required mandatory attendance until age 16

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    IQ testing to track students is widely used throughout USA

    IQ exams were highly culturally biased. 2/3 of Mexican American students were labeled as slow or retarded.
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    Charter schools were developed in MN

    These schools used public money for alternative education. Charter schools become part of the nationwide debate over school choice.
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    Homeschooling allowed in all 50 states

    Movement was led by the Christian right