Home  »  Volume XVII: American LATER NATIONAL LITERATURE: PART II  »  § 35. Educational Reports

The Cambridge History of English and American Literature in 18 Volumes (1907–21). rn VOLUME XVII. Later National Literature, Part II.

XXIII. Education

§ 35. Educational Reports

European endeavour and achievement in education became the subject of much study by American educators and occasioned a few outstanding reports. Some of these reports were personal only, as that on the Fellenberg plan (1831–32) by William C. Woodbridge, who taught for a year in the parent institution. Others were official, as that made by Professor Calvin E. Stowe on the Prussian school system to the Ohio legislature in 1837. This brief volume, admirable in conciseness, temper, and insight, had wide influence and was republished by many state legislatures. So also was the report of the French philosopher Cousin, On the State of Public Instruction in Germany, Particularly in Prussia (1831). This, indeed, because of its wide influence came to be considered a part of American educational literature.

More ponderous and less influential was the exhaustive report of Alexander Dallas Bache (1839), the first president of Girard College. Authorized by the trustees to gather information concerning the education of orphans, he included an elaborate study of school systems of most European countries. The influence of all these reports was focussed by Horance Mann in his Seventh Annual Report (1844) as Secretary of the Massachusetts Board of Education.