Ch 8 Notes sec 2 and 3


American Society

Chapter 8 sec 2 Education p. 281

Expanding Public Education

By the Civil War most states had established public school

Most children receive little to no formal schooling, if they went to school they usually left within four years and very few went to high school

Between 1865 and 1895 states passed laws making school attendance mandatory for students between 8 and 14 years old, for between 12 and 16 weeks annually

Curriculum was basic – reading, writing, arithmetic. Rote memorization was the rule, and many teachers had little training. Rules were strict and corporal punishment was common.

Kindergarten, a concept from Germany, brought children into a learning environment at an earlier age and by 1890 there were 3000 across the U.S., eventually kindergarten became part of the public school curriculum

Opportunities for education were very different depending on the race of the student. In 1880 62% of white children attended elementary school compared to

34% of African American students – and it was not until the 1940s that public school education would be available to the majority of those children in the South

GROWTH OF HIGH SCHOOLS the Industrial Age demanded new skills in technology and management, and as

Andrew Carnegie said to keep the average person loyal to the idea of a capitalist system there must be a “ladders upon which the aspiring can rise”

1900 – 500,000 students in high school – at first mostly college prepatory courses, later vocational training in drafting, carpentry, mechanics for boys; typing, filing, and office work for girls.

Literacy rates in 1871 – 80%, 7.6 million high school students

1920 – 94% 21.6 million high school students

Literacy rates in 2008 – 95%

Racial discrimination – 1890 fewer than 1% of black teenagers attended high school,

2/3 of these attended private schools. By 1910 it rose to 3%, but for the most part still in private schools

Education for Immigrants – Immigrants were encouraged to go to school – it was a way to Americanize the children. Free public education often came with a heavy dose of Protestant religious teaching – a problem for people from Catholic societies.

Adult immigrants attended night schools to learn English and qualify for citizenship.

Employers offered daytime programs to help Americanize workers, Henry Ford was accused of using his program to undermine the efforts of organized labor in his factories.


2.3% of students went on to colleges and universities in 1900. (Today ____________%)

Between 1880 and 1920 college enrollment quadruples.

Why? National needs had changed – more education was necessary to support society

 industrial development means more training needed to run factories and business professional schools for law and medicine no longer an entrance exam, high school diploma is enough changes in enrollment policies (women)

Higher ed for AAs –

Segregated society meant that blacks needed trained professionals to serve their communities. Excluded from white institutions there was a need for colleges and universities to provide this training.

Howard, Atlanta and Fisk Universities, 1865 – 1868

Booker T. Washington – Tuskegee Institute – discrimination will end when blacks can prove their economic value to society through useful labor skills

W.E.B. Du Bois (first AA to receive a doctorate from Harvard – 1895) disagreed with the gradual approach of Washigton – Niagara Movement (1905) to encourage liberal education among blacks – “We are Americans not only by birth and by citizenship but by our political ideals --- and the greatest of those ideals is that ALL MEN ARE


By 1900 – millions of people were receiving the education they needed to cope with the changing world.

Discrimination remained the poison for society.

American Society

Ch 8 sec 3 Segregation and Discrimination

P. 286 –

Reconstruction – brings new political and social rights but also hostile and violent opposition from whites.

Laws restricting the rights of AAs severely curtailed their civil rights -- from the expansion of rights following the Civil War until approx 1890 most had some access to voting and occasionally held office. By 1900 most Southern states had adopted legal policies and methods to weaken AA political power.

Literacy tests – different tests for blacks and whites

Poll tax – annual tax to allow the votes

Grandfather clause – failed literacy test? can’t pay poll tax? still ok to vote if

Grandpa could vote on Jan 1 1867 -- the date that freed slaves had the right to vote

– protects illiterate poor whites, prevents black voting

Jim Crow – segregation laws that separated blacks and whites in public and private facilities -- schools, hospitals, parks, transportation systems in the South SCOTUS did not overturn these laws even though they violated civil rights

Plessy v. Ferguson – separation of races is ok if the separate facilities and services are equal – legalizes segregation in the US for 60 years. Does not violate the 14 th

Amendment guarantee of equal protection under the Constitution

Racial etiquette – informal rules and customs that reinforced social segregation of the races, and were designed to reinforce the lower social status – giving up seats on the bus to whites, tipping their hats, always deferring to whites etc. violations of this social structure were met with violent retaliation – 1882 – 1892

1400 AAs were shot, burned or hanged without trial in the South – continued on a lower level into the 20 th


Northern discrimination was also strong but not as structured – segregated neighborhoods, workplace issues, labor unions, -- race riots when tensions erupted,

Discrimination in the West – Mexicans –railroads, mining, agriculture – debt peonage – money owed to employers reduced laborers to a virtual slavery state.

1911 – declared violation of 13 th

Amendment – involuntary servitude

Chinese – fear of job competition in the west – segregated schools, and neighborhoods, -- Chinese Exclusion Act