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Hawaiian, 105 American, 52 British, 2 German, 1 French, 1 Belgian, 5 Scandinavian, 11 Portuguese, 1 Chinese. The nationalities of teachers in independent schools are as follows : 15 Hawaiian, 10 part Hawaiian, 121 American, 24 British, 6 German, 4 French, 6 Belgian, 1 Dutch, 1 Scandinavian, 2 Portuguese, 2 Japanese, 11 Chinese.
Here is a comparative statement of school attendance in six years :
During the past year there has been a gain of 1,407, or 11 per cent. Hawaiians of full blood have increased 273, or 5 per cent.; part Hawaiians, 250, or 11 per cent. Portuguese have increased in number 414, or 13 per cent. Of the entire attendance, 56 per cent. is Hawaiian or part Hawaiian, and 25 per cent. Portuguese. There is a significant increase in the number of Chinese and Japanese, although the proportion of these nationalities is still small. With such a variety of children of other tongues than that taught, it is not surprising to learn that high school studies are engaged in by but a small proportion of pupils. Mr. H. S. Townsend, Inspector-General of Schools, says in his report that in Honolulu only 4 per cent. of the children in the public schools are pursuing studies of this class, whereas in cities of similar size in America the average is about 10 per cent.
The figures given above show that, at the opening of the present year, between 12,000 and 13,000 children of Hawaiian and European nationalities—or the races entitled to the electoral franchise under certain property and educational restrictions
were being educated in the English language within these islands. This is more than 12 per cent. of the entire population (census of 1896) of 109,000, whereof 46,023 are Asiatics who are not eligible for the franchise. So large a school attendance of the enfranchised nationalities augurs well for the wholesome growth of an intelligent body politic. At the same time, there seems to be no small significance in the recent immense increase of Chinese and Japanese pupils. Any who deplore this exhibit must be of narrow mind. While it does not imply insensate race prejudice to regard with serious apprehension the continued large influx of Asiatics, yet, as it is certain that a large proportion of those now in the country will, like the poor, be always with us, it is against sound wisdom to deprecate anything that will raise the grade of their intelligence. The more near an Asiatic is brought to Western ways, the less dangerous a competitor will he be in labor or business, Civilization breeds wants, and wants make the cheap man dear. At any rate, the remarkably increasing thirst of Asiatics in Hawaii for an English education speaks volumes for the potency of Hawaiian civilizing influences. The fact that our educational system is broad enough to accommodate, and hospitable enough to welcome, all comers reflects some glory on this little country. Even the public schools of the United States, whose praise is in all ends of the earth, are not doing more effective work than the schools of Hawaii in refining out the pure gold of humanity from the crudest of raw materials.
The Hawaiian public school system is essentially American. It employs American text-books almost exclusively, which, of course, include for the higher grades the cream of English classics. The only exceptions are Hawaiian geography and history. More than one-third of the teachers in all schools, public and independent, are American. It is no slight testimony to the efficiency of the system that Hawaiian and part Hawaiian teachers come next in number to American, and form but a little under one-third of the entire teaching staff. This is a happy result of the policy of training teachers at home, as these are acquainted from the first with the peculiar difficulties of conducting a school of mixed races. For many years hometrained teachers had to do their best to earn certificates by working upon the furnished syllabus of periodical examinations, but within the past few years there has been established at Honolulu
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education or courses in their affiliated schools of the learned professions. St. Louis College, also at Honolulu, is conducted by Roman Catholic Brothers, giving instruction from primary to classical grades, with music and drawing as specialties. It is only open to boys, but it has more pupils than any other school in the islands. Iolani College, owned and directed by the Anglican Bishop of Honolulu, with an able staff of instructors, is a high-class academy doing substantial work. The Kamehameha School for boys and girls, founded by the will of the late Mrs. Charles R. Bishop, a royal princess of Hawaii, besides giving tuition from primary to high school grades, inclusive, affords the benefits of manual training in various branches of industry. There is also a normal school for the training of teachers attached to this noble foundation. Manual training, it m.y be said, is being introduced into the common public schools of the country wherever practicable. Honolulu has long had a reformatory school in which agricultural and mechanical industry has been taught to the wayward lads sent there for reclamation.
Hawaii has practically a free school system, the only exception being a group centering in the Honolulu High School. This is under authority of a section of the new school law, which provides “that the department may, in its discretion, establish, maintain, and discontinue select schools, taught in the English language, at a charge of such tuition fees for attendance as it may deem proper; provided, however, that such select schools shall be established only in places where free schools of the same grade for pupils within the compulsory age are readily accessible to the children of such district."
Out of the total appropriated expenditures of the Hawaiian government for all purposes, $1,939,978.50, for the two years ending December 31, 1897, the amount for the support of public schools is $404,000. As the independent schools are also sustained out of the pockets of the people, the aggregate contributions of the population to the cause of education are in nowise shabby. On the whole, Hawaii may be proud of her schools. They will not be the least valuable part of the estate that she will bring into the American Commonwealth.
a normal school with a practice-school attached. From this institution a constant supply of scientifically trained teachers is assured, which, it is hoped, will soon overtake, or, at least, approach the demand. An admirable feature of the eystem is the virtually permanent tenure of the teacher's office. Teachers are employed during the year. Schools are in session, even in remote country districts, for forty weeks of the fifty-two. Once employed, teachers are privileged to remain in the service until they resign or are removed for cause. Removals are rare. Within a few years past a splendid esprit de corps has developed among the teachers. They have formed associations in the different islands for mutual improvement in the profession, and they hold a national summer school with the same purpose each year in Honolulu, Eminent educators from the United States are induced to become the principal lecturers before the summer schools. The Inspector-General, who is chief execative officer under the Board of School Commissioners, is in nothing more zealous than in stimulating the teachers to effort in this line of mutual improvement.
By an Act of the Legislature of 1896 the school system of Hawaii has been raised from the rank of a bureau to that of a department of the government. The Minister of Foreign Affairs is also Minister of Education and the President, ex officio, of a board of six commissioners, of whom three may be, and two are at present, ladies.
The Constitution of the Republic of Hawaii prohibits any aid from the public treasury to sectarian schools—another point of contact with the American school system. Formerly it was the regular practice of successive legislatures to pass grants of money to schools under the control of different religious denominations. Instead of becoming weaker from the withdrawal of public aid, the independent schools last year exhibited an increase of attendance proportionate to that of the public schools. There are several fine institutions, under both Protestant and Catholic auspices, firmly established in the islands. Oahu College, at Honolulu, a foundation of the American Mission, has now a handsome group of modern buildings. It has chairs established in the ancient and modern languages and natural philosophy, besides the usual academic branches. Students frequently graduate from it to enter universities in the United States for higher