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If a state of health is at any time discovered that needs the attention of a physician, the pupil is required to consult one without delay. In abnormal conditions of the eye, a professional oculist of high standing is regularly employed. More than twenty-three per cent. of our students have required his services.
Considerably more time is allowed for the study of physiology than is usual in schools of this class, and much effort is made to give to the instruction and investigations a practical turn; to deal with living questions of hygiene, as they arise in everyday life, especially such as have a personal interest and importance for the pupils.
The evil effects of hurry and worry are made apparent, and are guarded against in many ways, chiefly the following :
Ample and frequent recesses are not only allowed, but insisted on. No pupil is ever occupied in study or recitation more than forty minutes without an interval of complete relaxation. A lunch is taken at noon in a large, pleasant room, used for this purpose alone, and provided with tables, at which the pupils sit, as at home, in free social enjoyment. The intermission allowed for this repast is fifty minutes long, and study is not permitted to infringe upon a moment of it.
Care is taken that, along with admonitions against hurry, time enough be given, in order that students may not be obliged to hurry.
Finally, it is not assumed that every pupil present on a given day is able to do school work. Those who find themselves ill, or too much fatigued for duty, are advised to take immediate rest; and a quiet room-one of the lightest and pleasantest in the building—is set apart for their use. It is provided with easy-chairs and couches, and furnished with light reading-matter; and here any overworked student may find, at the moment of need, quiet and rest. It should be added that no instance of abuse of this privilege has come to our knowledge, while its great value as a sanitary appliance has been fully proved.
The school has been conducted to the satisfaction of the Board of Visitors, and has had the sympathy and approval of the community which it specially accommodates. A room has been neatly and appropriately arranged, in which the pupils who remain during recess take their meals at tables, with settees conveniently arranged, and where the graces of social intercourse are seen and cultivated.
The genuine interest shown by the principal and those connected with him, in the matter of health, impresses the pupils with a deep sense of its importance; and they will be likely, not only to pay attention to their own physical condition, but, as teachers, to bestow care of this kind upon scholars under their charge.
The efforts of the teachers are rewarded by remarkable interest and improvement on the part of the scholars, and we feel that the school is a real success. The principal and the other instructors seem to be in perfect accord, and the spirit which prevails through the institution seems to be free from any elements of friction or dissatisfaction. If we do not graduate from this school instructors who will be successful in the best sense, the Visitors will be sadly disappointed.
The building is well fitted for its purpose, and shows fewer defects than most public buildings. The streets, with a slight and unimportant exception, have been accepted by the city, and made public. The house will always be upon a hill, and hills are not climbed without labor; but the pure air which is breathed, and the beautiful prospect which greets every one who reaches the spot where the house is located, are ample compensation for any extra labor in reaching it. The room for drawing has been appropriately tinted; the chemical apparatus is in good order, and the building and its surroundings are in such condition that, although more books are much needed, no special appropriation is asked for the present year.
Gratified with the successful inauguration of the school, the Visitors make their report to the Board of Education with the conviction that the funds of the State have been wisely and profitably invested in the establishment of the Worcester Normal School.
Visitors. JANUARY, 1876.
STATE NORMAL ART-SCHOOL,
The State Normal Art-School is now in the third year of its progress. It is the child of necessity. The legislature of 1870, in view of the great importance of drawing as a branch of education, enacted that cities and towns containing more than ten thousand inhabitants should make provision for free instruction in industrial drawing for persons over fifteen years of age. Although the Act met with much favor, it was found impracticable to realize the advantages contemplated, for the want of competent teachers. Further legislation was therefore had, providing for the establishment of a Normal Art-School, under the direction and management of the Board of Education.
The school was opened in the autumn of 1873. It became apparent at once that it met a public need. The number in attendance during the first year was 133. This number was increased the second year to 239,-215 in Class A, and 24 in Class B. Of these, 84 were gentlemen, and 155 were ladies. The number in attendance the present year, up to the time of issuing of the circular, is 307; painely, 233 in Class A, 38 in Class B, 21 in Class C, and 15 in Class D. As a few of the members of Class C are also members of Class D, the actual number of persons, by the circular, is slightly under 300. The total number, computed by years, who have received instruction in the school, up to the time mentioned, is 679. It is understood that the instruction in Classes B, C and D may be profitably received, in any order desired, by all who have mastered the work in Class A.
Shortly after the opening of the current school year, it was found expedient to establish Class D, as several pupils were desirous of receiving instruction in the branches embraced therein. This having been authorized by the Board, arrange
ments for the requisite accommodations and instruction were immediately made, and the class-work began. The number receiving instruction is 15.
Of these pupils, 71 have graduated in Class A, of whom 30 are known to be already employed. Of those not yet graduated in Class A, and who are still members of the school, 19 are teaching. Of those not graduated, and not at present in the school, 7 are teaching. Total number teaching, 56.
Of the present members of the school, 130 are gentlemen, and 177 ladies. One-half of them are residents of Boston ; six are from other States; namely, two from Vermont, and one each from New York, New Jersey, Ohio and Minnesota ; and the remainder are from the various sections of our own State, principally, however, from the eastern portion.
Since the third year circular, whence these statistics are gathered, was issued, accessions to the school have carried the number of present members up to 313, and the total number from the beginning, a little under 700.
The principal embarrassment under which the school has labored has been a want of commodious rooms. From the beginning its quarters have been far too circumscribed. The two upper stories,-one being the attic story,-of an ordinary dwelling-house, No. 33 Pemberton Square, was all the accommodation the school could boast, though numbering 133 pupils, for the entire first year. It was found necessary to divide the pupils into three sections, one occupying the rooms in the forenoon, another in the afternoon, and the third in the evening. The fact that such a division was in some respects a convenience to the pupils, enabling them to choose their own time of day for attendance, was a mitigation of their trials. It did not, however, prevent the excessive crowding of the rooms, much suffering from imperfect ventilation, and great annoyance from the want of light. When the time for examination came, it was found necessary to take the pupils to a distant part of the city, to rooms temporarily opened for them, where their testwork could be executed. Complaint after complaint and petition after petition came to the Visitors and members of the Board for relief, but no relief could be afforded.
On the opening of the second school year, additional rooms were secured in No. 24 Pemberton Square, which, though quite