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reign, a system of popular instruction was created and made a part of the State system of education, and introduced into all the German and Slavonian provinces of her Empire. In the last three years there were examined at the Vienna Normal School 923 public and 934 private teachers; in 1780 there were 8,776 pupils in the public schools of Vi. enna, and 65,989 in the Bohemian schools, while throughout the Empire more than half the schools had been improved and the total number of scholars amounted to 200,000.
Joseph II. applied himself with energy to carrying out the political reforms initiated by the Empress Maria Theresa. Reversing the traditional policy of most of his predecessors, he granted full religious liberty to Protestants, discontinued the censorship of the press, abolished 900 convents, and destroyed the political power of the clergy. Soon after his accession to the throne in 1780, Felbiger was removed and Baron von Swieten was made president of the State Educational Board, and J. A. Gall, chief superintendent of the normal schools. Gall originated nearly all the reforms that were introduced during the reign of Joseph, the influence of Swieten being principally confined to securing the requisite legislation. The most important of these measures were those relating to compulsory attendance and school patronage. In addition to the ordinance of Maria Theresa that no child could be taken into service or enter a trade without a certificate of school attendance, an enrollment of all school children was now provided for, their non attendance was made punishable by fine, and with the Jews the prescribed instruction was made an indispensable prerequisite to a valid marriage. As the re. sources that had hitherto been made use of for increasing the school funds failed in many cases to suffice for the establishment of schools where they were needed, the Emperor decreed in 1787 that wherever the endowment and support of a school had not been already provided for, the “patronage” and consequent duty to establish and maintain a school in accordance with the school ordinances should immediately and permanently attach to the parish patron, to whom the right of presentation of the pastoratc belonged. Between the school patron, the manorial lord,, and the community, there was established a so-called “ concurrence," and their respective rights and duties were strictly defined. By this means schools could now be located wherever there were 90-100 children within the circuit of half a league, and an under-teacher was allowed for every fifty children additional. All teachers were relieved from obligation to military service, and a minimum salary was fixed, any deficiency in which was to be supplied from the school fund. The “ciphering kreutzer" (additional charge for tuition in arithmetic) was forbidden to be exacted and poor children must be exempted from all tuition fees,
The Toleration Charter of 1781 introduced an entirely new feature, viz., non-Catholic schools, granting to Protestants and to members of the Greek Church the right to erect a church and school for every 500 persons and to engage a properly trained native born teacher—with the lim. itation soon afterwards made that where Catholic schools already existed the establishment of new schools was unnecessary. Wherever a synagogue existed, also, a Jewish school was permitted and afterwards required, and the right was granted of admission to the normal schools. In other cases the children were obliged to attend the Catholic schools, relieved only from the prayers and religious instruction, and to avoid occasion of disturbance and ill-will, separate benches were to be set apart for their use. The interest taken by the Jews of Bohemia in the improvement of schools was acknowledged by the Emperor by appropriating certain taxes levied upon them to their educational benefit.
The energetic efforts of the Emperor, aided by the zealous coöperation of Gall, Kindermann, Mehoffer, and others, soon effected an extraordinary increase in the number and attendance of the schools. In Bohemia within ten years the number of scholars had quadrupled, and in Moravia and Silesia it had increased tenfold. But the instruction was still far from satisfactory. Gall had, indeed, improved to some extent the methods of Felbiger, and modified them by his own so-called Socratic system; but the far better systeins that had recently arisen among the German pedagogists were wholly unknown; he had altered the textbooks, and done away with many of the monotonous simultaneous exercises, yet the instruction of the schools still remained too uniform and mechanical, owing to the iron strictness of the rules by which it was governed. No methods of teaching were permitted but those taught in the normal schools, the text-books, even to the style of penmanship, and the order of lessons were rigidly prescribed. The regulation that required the use of the German language in the city schools and wherever possible elsewhere, was also found of very difficult execution, causing the common schools to be generally known as “German schools,” and giving rise to much of the aversion to Germanism that prevailed among the Slavonians, though in fact no race shows so little capacity of resistance in its intercourse with other races, coalesces with them so easily, and is therefore so far from seeking their denationalization as the German.
It was required with equal stringency that no teacher should be employed without a previous examination, and on the part of candidates for the pastoral office a year of special instruction was necessary in pastoral divinity, pedagogics, catechetics, methods, and rural economy, and no pupil could be admitted to the novitiate of an order without a normal school certificate. Singing in the common schools was to be made the subject of especial care, and instruction in industrial occupations was urgently recommended. Bohemia took the lead in this direction, under Kindermann's influence, and the raising of silk, horticulture and orcharding, and the rearing of bees received much attention. Efforts were continued to remove corporal punishment entirely from the schools, and Spendou, who succeeded Gall in 1789, devoted himself especially to this object. Plans were provided and rules laid down for the construction of school buildings, and finally “Circle School Boards” were created, composed of the deans of the circle and experienced teachers, who were commissioned to visit all the schools, learn their condition, attend the examinations, and make report in accordance with specified forms. These reports, commenced in 1788, were for a long time the basis of all general knowledge respecting the common schools of the empire.
Much still remained to be done at the time of the Emperor's death in 1790. His successor, Leopold II., appointed Baron von Martini iu Swieten's place as president of the “Board for the Regulation of Instruction,” which had been substituted for the previous State Board of Education. Martini's attention was principally directed to the improvement of the higher schools, but the chief enactment having reference to the common schools gave to the teachers a peculiar position in the administration of the schools and recognized the value of their knowledge and experience. By this ordinance the teachers of each normal school, either alone or with the gymnasial teachers of the same place, were united into a "Teachers' Association," which should have immediate direction of the schools within their limits, advise respecting the plan of instruction, the introduction of text-books, the maintenance of discipline, and the nomination of teachers, and contribute to the promotion of education by the publication of a scientific journal. The Association at the provincial capital elected from the retired members of the profession, or from their own number, a delegate to the “Educational Session,” which had the supervision and control of all that related to study and instruction in the common schools throughout the province. The Session was subordinate to the provincial government, by which a “School Referee" was appointed for the decision of all such questions as did not require an appeal to the Privy Council of the empire.
But neither Teachers' Association nor Educational Session proved practically efficient in their operation, and the political movements that now began to disturb all Europe soon had their natural influence upon the development of popular culture in Austria. The Emperor Francis, who succeeded Leopold in 1792, consulted with his Chancellor, Count Rottenhann, upon the subject of the numerous current complaints against the existing school system. Rottenhann was opposed to conferring any form or measure of self government upon the teachers and would reserve to the State exclusively the decision of all educational questions, believing that the same line of policy should be pursued in the rise and control of its intellectual resources as in the employment of any other of its possessions. He believed the true object of the trivial school to be “to make thoroughly good, tractable, and industrious men of the laboring classes of the people," and that much of the hostility manifested by the lower civil authorities, pastors, and even communities, would be allayed by restricting its scope. The teacherships could easily be filled by simple laboring men; tuition fees should be abolished; and instruction should be given in industrial employments. In the smaller cities the schools would need to differ little from those in the country, but in the larger cities there should be more advanced schools for pupils seeking more advanced instruction, and here tuition fees would serve to exclude the masses, while scholarships might be provided for such of the poor as were capable of benefiting by them.
Upon the basis of these opinions a Board of Educational Reform was created in 1795, with Rottenhann as president, and a membership of great ability, who, however, had generally more respect for the existing system than was shown by him. This Board was continued for several years and made numerous reports, but no decisive action was taken by the Emperor until 1802, when the Educational Sessions were abolished and the action of the Teachers' Associations was made merely advisory. Finally, in August, 1805, was published the “Constitution of the German Common Schools," which has for the most part continued since in force as the school law of Austria.
The principal provisions of this Constitution were the following :- The supervision of the trivial and country high schools rested first with the respective pastors, and secondly, with prominent schoolmen among the ecclesiastics, especially the deans of the district, who reported upon the instruction and discipline of the schools to the episcopal consistory and upon other subjects to the circle magistrate, and these in their turn to the provincial authorities. The district superintendent at the provincial capital was also chief superintendent and general referee for the province. The provincial authorities reported to the State Board of Education, Trivial schools were required in every parish, with a separation of the sexes, at least in the cities. There should be at least one high school in each circle, the higher class of which was open to girls, only where there were no special female schools. The high schools at the provincial capitals must be normal schools, besides which there should be female schools for the better classes, under the charge of female teachers. The trivial course was limited to the reading, writing, and understanding of the native language, with occasional instruction in grammar, the fundamental rules of arithmetic, religious instruction, vocal music, instruction in the duties of the laboring class, and in simple manual occupations. The teaching here was to be primarily directed to the cultivation and exercise of the memory and the teachers were restricted to the explanations given in the text-books. In the trivial schools of the larger towns a third class should be added for more extended instruction in grammar and arithmetic, as well as in the elements of geometry and mechanics. In the high schools, the third class should receive instruction in grammar and written composition in addition to the usual branches in city schools, while for the children of tradesmen and artisans there should be a fourth class, continuing two years, with a yet more extended course including geography and natural history. Trivial schools were required to have but one teacher, with assistants if necessary; high schools should have as many teachers as classes, and normal or model schools a director in addition. Twenty hours of instruction per week were required, increased in the last half-year of the third class to twenty-five, and in the fourth class to thirty. In half-day schools the larger scholars should receive fifteen, and the younger eight hours. High school teachers must have received at least six months, and trivial school teachers three months, of normal instruction, but teachers' “certificates” were given them only after a year's trial and a subsequent examination. Like certificates of qualification were required of private teachers. The qualifications and duties of teachers were defined with great strictness, and the methods of appointment of teachers and school officers were carefully regulated. High school teachers and their families had the right of pension, and trivial school teachers could claim the aid of an assistant in case of incapacity from age or prolonged sickness. Instruction should be gratuitous to children of the poor and of soldiers in the army, and text-books should be supplied to them at the rate of one book for two scholars. The number of scholars under a single teacher could not exceed 80-100, or twice this number in half-day schools, but no new school could be established unless plainly necessary and when the community could defray most of the expense. Plans to be followed in their erection were provided; the school furniture should be supplied by the patron, but the terms of concurrence between the patron, the territorial lord, and the community remained as before respecting the other expenses. No change was made in the previous regulations respecting the Protestant and Jewish schools, similar qualifications being required of the teachers, and the Jewish schools remaining wholly under Catholic superintendence.
Spendou was appointed School Referee in connection with the newly organized State Board of Education. In 1808 the archbishops and bishops were required to so far watch over the common schools as to secure purity of religious instruction to the Catholic children, but until 1834 no essential modification was made in this school code of 1804. Among the principal changes were a slight improvement in the pensions, salaries, and relations of the teachers, and their recognition as State servants of the class of " honoratiores,” for which, however, the carrying on of any trade was forbidden. Increased care and strictness were required in the examination and choice of teachers, and the normal course for teachers of the trivial schools was extended to six months; three years' service was required prior to the permanent settlement of a normal or high school teacher, and no foreigner could be admitted to any position. Competitive examinations were introduced for teacherships of drawing, penmanship, and other branches of the fourth class. The number of schools was also increased by permitting branch (ercurrendo) schools, attended as often as necessary by teachers who still retained connection with the regular schools, and the organization of the adult schools was rendered more perfect. Yet more stringent measures were taken to se