Third Annual Report of the Educational Institute of Otago.Mr. W. S. Fitzgerald Mr. W. Milne, M.A. Mr. J. B. Park Mr. Alex. Montgomery Dr. W. Macdonald. M.A.
The Third Annual Report. 1879-80.
The General Committee of Management have much pleasure in laying before members of the Institute a brief account of the proceedings of the year 1879-80.
The meetings of your Committee have been well attended—several members residing at a great distance from Dunedin having seldom been absent, either from special or regular meetings. It is gratifying to find members so attentive to the work of the Institute.
Your Committee have had under consideration the whole of the remits from the annual meeting. The Committee, under the impression that the deliberations of the Annual Conference should not exist merely on paper, have sought to give practical effect to your resolutions. Your Committee are of opinion that the proceedings of the past session have been the means of advancing the cause of education, and continuing the special work of the Institute.
Recommendations of the Annual Meeting. Science Lectures.
It will be in the recollection of members, that the Education Department required a large number of our teachers to pass an examination in Elementary Science. In order to prepare for this, Professor Black, at the annual meeting, promised to institute a course of lectures on the prescribed subjects. Your Committee issued circulars setting forth the advantages to be derived from attendance on the lectures.page 4
Professor Black took up Chemistry and Physics, and was followed by Professor Hutton, on Zoology; Professor Scott, on Physiology; and G. M. Thomson, Esq., on Botany. At the suggestion of the Inspector-General, an examination was held at the end of the course—a pass in which entitled the teacher to a permanent certificate. Your Committee feel gratified that the Institute has been instrumental in conferring this advantage upon a large number of teachers. It may be mentioned, that a similar course was given in Southland, a full account of which appears in the report of that branch. There has been a very widely expressed opinion, that the thanks of the Institute are due to Professor Black, and those associated with him, for this very important work.
Industrial and Educational Exhibition.
It was considered inadvisable to ask publishers for exhibits for an exhibition this year. Your Committee consider that an exhibition every two or three years would sufficiently meet our requirements. There will be no Industrial Exhibition this year: there seemed to be an unwillingness to act, on the part of those most interested.
Chair of English Language and Literature, Political Economy, and Constitutional History.
Members will be pleased to observe that a Chair for these subjects has been endowed, in the Otago University, by the Presbyterian Synod of Otago and Southland.* The course of English Language will no doubt be popular with teachers.
The Transactions of 1878-9
Copies of the Transactions were sent to the publishers who contributed to the exhibition, and to the various Teachers' Associations in New Zealand and elsewhere. Copies were also forwarded to the members of the Education Department, with a view of bringing under their notice your reports of last year on 'Registers,' 'Standards of Education &c. The Inspector-General, in reply to a special page 5 communication on the subject, thus refers to your suggestions on the standards:—"It has been deemed advisable to leave "the standards as they are, until experience can serve as a "guide to improvements." The correspondence on this matter will be laid before you.
The Time of the Annul Meeting.
As you are aware, this matter was left in the hands of the Committee of Management. Your Committee, fearing that they did not represent the views of the majority of the teachers in the Province, remitted the matter to the Branch Associations. The most of these voted for Easter in preference to midwinter. It therefore seemed to your Committee that the most judicious course was to meet this year at the usual time. Your Committee are aware that the matter is surrounded with some difficulty, and intend taking an explicit vote of the Institute on the question at the ensuing meeting.
Your Committee have again had under consideration the subject of reconstructing the library, so as to make it as far as possible a technical library for schoolmasters, but have been prevented by lack of funds from making much progress. Our library is not acknowledged by the Government as a public library, and therefore does not receive any share of the government grant as formerly. The library question demands the serious consideration of the Institute.
According to the resolution of last annual meeting, one third of the income should have been devoted to library purposes; but the expenses of printing had to be met, and, as will be seen from the balance sheet, little or nothing was left for the library. Your Committee are of opinion that printing expenses must, if possible, be curtailed this year.page 7
The ordinary work of the Branches has to a large extent been interrupted by the attendance of members at the Saturday Science Classes in the University.
Your Committee have had under discussion several important resolutions from the Branches. These will be placed before you. One, that of an Annuity Fund Scheme, deserves your special consideration.
The Conference, 1880.
Mr. Pryde, Secretary to the Education Board, kindly assisted your Committee in the matter of railway passes, communicating with the Hon. the Minister of Railways and securing without delay railway passes on terms similar to those of last year. Your Committee have to thank Mr. Pryde for the assistance he has rendered in matters connected with the Annual Meeting.
Return tickets at single fares, available from March 25th to April 5th, will be granted to teachers or members in Otago and Southland desirous of attending the Conference.
D. White, Hon. Sec.
Resolutions for the Consideration of the Conference.
"That the compulsory clause in the Act of 1877 be put in force by the direct agency of the Government, instead of being left to the option of School Committees."
"That the system of examination carried out in the Public Schools should be uniform, both for pupils and pupil-teachers."
"That, in the opinion of this Branch of the Educational Institute of Otago, it is desirable that the inspectors be under the immediate control of the Minister of Education; and that the Inspectors take the different Educational Districts in rotation."
"That during the Conference, a Committee he appointed consisting of the presidents and secretaries of local associations, to report on the more efficient working of the Branch Associations."
"That the Conference take into consideration the propriety of trying to secure for the University and for the Educational Institute, representatives in Parliament, in the event of a new electoral Bill being brought before the House of Representatives."
Railway Passes and Tickets of Membership.
The Railway Department is desirous of imposing a more effective check than that of last year; it has therefore been deemed necessary to get membership tickets printed. These will show the name and address of the teacher and member. None will be entitled to a railway pass unless they present this ticket to the station-masters, who, it has been arranged, will retain it as a check against the number of railway tickets issued. Tickets may be obtained from the Secretary to the Institute on his being assured that the applicants are teachers or members of the institute. Teachers are requested to make early application. A copy of the programme of business accompanies the annual Report. The Conference will sit on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, March 30, 31, and April 1, 1880, in the Oddfellows' Hall, Rattray-street.
Annual Report of the Southland Branch.
In presenting this, the Third Annual Report of the Southland Branch of the Educational Institute of Otago, I propose to give an abstract of its proceedings for the year 1879-80.
Office-Bearers.—At the Annual Meeting the Office-bearers of the previous year were reelected—Mr. Macgregor, President; and Mr. Orr, Secretary and Treasurer.
Meetings.—Eight Meetings were held during the year; five of these were regular, two were adjourned meetings, and one was special. The average attendance at these meetings was nine. An increased interest has been manifested in the work of the Association, while there has been an increase in its membership.
Papers.—No papers were read before the Association during the year. The remark I made in my report of last year appears again this year, namely—that the press of other business matters more than occupied the full time of the meetings. Of the matters dealt with, the following are some of the chief:—Discussion of subjects submitted by other branches, and by the Institute; the varied systems of Public School examination adopted throughout the Colony; the relation of School Inspectors to the General Department and to the Education Boards; the enforcement of the compulsory clauses of the Education Act; the "Standards" and "Passes" in them; the delivery of Science Lectures to the Teachers of Southland, by Professor Black, of Dunedin University, and G. M. Thomson, Esq. of Dunedin High School. The lectures of the former were on Chemistry; those of the latter, on Botany. I am most happy to say that these lectures were well attended, and enthusiastically received. At the conclusion of the courses, an examination was held, a pass in which will entitle the holder to a permanent certificate.
Finance.—The finances of this Branch of the Institute are in a satisfactory condition. The total receipts amount to £9 12s. 2d., of which the sum of £7 8s. 8d. is credited to members' subscriptions alone. The expenditure, which does not include the lectures on Science, which were met by special provision, amounts to an equal sum. The lectures on Science cost the Branch £37 7s. 6d. The whole amount is, however, covered by the receipts specially provided.
The hope expressed in the last Annual Report regarding the prosperity of the Branch has been realized in an encouraging degree; let me add another hope for still greater prosperity during the year 1880-81.
James Orr, Sec.
Annual Report of the Tuapeka Branch.
In presenting the Third Annual Report of the Tuapeka Branch of the Educational Institute of Otago, I may state that the Branch continues in its former satisfactory condition.
The number of members enrolled was eleven, which shows an increase of two since last year.
At the Annual Meeting, (held in April), the following gentlemen were elected office-bearers for the year:—President, Mr. Johnston; Representative on the General Committee of Management, Mr. Neill; Secretary and Treasurer, Mr. Pope. In consequence of the six months' course of lectures delivered in Dunedin by Professors Black, Hutton, and Scott, only six meetings were held, and three papers read, as follows (1) "Bible in Schools," Mr. Johnston; (2) "Education," Mr. Neill; (3) "The use of Rewards and Punishments," Mr. Pope.
A scheme for granting annuities to teachers was brought forward by Mr. Stenhouse, and it was the unanimous expression of the meeting that this subject should receive the careful and earnest consideration of the Conference.
Langley Pope, Sec.
Annual Report of the Balclutha Branch.
I bag to submit the Third Annual Report of the Balclutha Branch of the Educational Institute of Otago.
The Office-bearers for the past year have been—Mr. John Porteous, President; Mr. George Steven, Representative on the General Committee of Management; Mr. Alexauder Grigor, Librarian; and Mr. James M'Neur, Secretary and Treasurer. The number of members on the roll is sixteen; three have removed to other districts, but their places have been filled by new members.
We have only had five meetings during the year, but these have been well attended; fourteen members being present at the last one.
The Branch did not meet from May till October, as most of the members were engaged in attendance on the Science Lectures in Dunedin.
The papers read were, an address by the President on "The reading of the Bible in Schools, and the moral influence of the Teacher," "The Latin Literature of the Augustine Age," by Mr. Malcolm; and "The Report of the Commission on Higher Education," by Mr. Waddell. The ordinary business of the Branch included, resolutions in favour of "The reading of the Bible in Schools," and "The diversion of the Synod's funds to the founding of Scholarships or Lectureships, in connection with the University of Otago;" and an expression of regret at a resolution of the Education Board regarding leave of absence to Teachers during sickness.
A few weeks ago Mr. Malcolm was appointed Rector of the Christchurch Normal School, and this Branch gave a complimentary dinner to that gentleman on the occasion of his leaving the district. Our invitation was heartily responded to by members of the several Branch Associations, and representatives from a number of the District? page 11 School Committees; all united warmly in the expression of appreciation of the valuable and earnest services of Mr. Malcolm in the cause of Education.
James M'neur, Sec.
Annual Report of the Waitaki Branch, 1879-80.
The Waitaki Branch of the Educational Institute of Otago was constituted for the year at its meeting in the month of March. The following Office-bearers were then elected:—President, Mr. M'Lymont. Kakanui; Secretary and Treasurer, Mr. R. Peattie. Oamaru; Librarian. Mr. W. Fidler, Oamaru; Representative to the General Committee of Management, Mr. Alexander Stewart, Union Street School, Dunedin. Mr. Peattie was requested to read a paper at the Easter Conference 1880.
The membership, so far as regards teachers has been fluctuating, on account of the many changes that have taken place in the district, during the year. The non-professional members entered during the year have been fourteen.
There is nothing to report with respect to the Library. Although there has been nearly an entire absence of prepared papers, the meetings of the Branch have not been without good results. At the April meeting the "Teaching of Science" was discussed, and resolutions passed similar to those afterwards arrived at by the Committee of the Institute, (vide Report, 1879, p. 73). In May the Annual Report of the Education Board was considered. The meeting expressed gratification at Mr. Petrie's Report, and acquiesced in his proposed reforms. It was also resolved to call attention to the fact that the district had no Drawing Master, while the Dunedin district was well supplied. A Drawing Master now visits the District High School fortnightly. It is hoped that his services may be extended. At the October meeting, a compendium of History for Standard III. was read by Mr. Peattie, and met with approbation. At the same meeting it was resolved to remit to the General Committee of Management as a subject for consideration at the Annual Conference, or before, if necessary, the propriety of trying to secure for the University, and for the Educational Institute, representatives to Parliament in the event of a new Electoral Bill being brought before the House of Representatives. At several meetings knotty grammatical points were discussed. Some meetings lapsed through stress of weather.
Robert Peattie, Sec.
Report of the Dunedin Branch.
Members.—There are 47 professional, and 26 non-professional members on the roll. Office-bearers;—President, Mr. George Reid; Treasurer, Mr. J. B. Park; Secretary, Mr. W. J. Moore.
Meetings.—Ten meetings have been held, the average attendance for the year being 12. At the beginning of the year it was resolved to revert to the old system of balloting for members who should prepare page 12 papers to be read by them. March: A committee was appointed to consider the report on the question of payment to teachers by average attendance. April: An able paper by Mr. Malcolm, of Milton, entitled, "The Latin Language of the Augustine Period;" June: "Bible Teaching in Schools," by Mr. A. Kyle; November: "The Teaching of Grammar," by Mr. Gardner; December: "How to make Grammatical Teaching practically useful," by Mr. A. Montgomery.
In consequence of the series of Science Lectures delivered to Teachers by Professors of the University, there has not been much actual work done in connection with the Branch during the year. In conclusion, your Committee hare much pleasure in recording their appreciation of the kindness of Professors Black, Hutton, and Scott, for the series of Lectures delivered by them to the Teachers, and sincerely hope the Committee of Management will specially thank those gentlemen, on behalf of the Teachers of Otago and Southland.
W. J. Moore, Sec.
Coulls & Culling. Printers & Stationers. Rattray-street.
* It may be noted also that the Synod has made a liberal grant towards the addition to the University Library of books bearing on the subjects of the Chair.