The Grand Regulator: The Miseducation of Nova Scotia's Teachers, 1838-1997

The Grand Regulator: The Miseducation of Nova Scotia's Teachers, 1838-1997

by George D. Perry

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Overview

Schools of education with utilitarian goals and strict standardization - often called "Normal Schools" - have been widely criticized by both the academy and the general public. In a story that resonates across Canada, The Grand Regulator examines an educational system that failed to inspire great teachers and produce imaginative, thinking citizens. Drawing on an array of archival materials, government publications, and firsthand accounts with former Normal School students, George Perry provides a rich reconstruction of the intellectual, social, economic, and political foundations of teacher education in Nova Scotia, and the methodological preoccupations that have hampered its subsequent development. He shows how a supposed science of education based on child psychology, in concert with the province's regulation of public schooling, justified low expectations for the education of most children and how standardized training programs deemphasized teachers' general liberal education and intellectual curiosity. The most complete study of Canadian teacher education to date, The Grand Regulator presents an analysis of perennial issues regarding the improvement of education that continue to concern us, and illuminates ways of raising the level of instruction in our present-day schools.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780773588936
Publisher: MQUP
Publication date: 07/01/2013
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 384
File size: 1 MB

About the Author

George D. Perry has held faculty positions in teacher education at universities in Canada, China, and Papua New Guinea, and has taught in secondary schools in Zambia and Canada. He lives in Halifax.

Table of Contents

Tables and Figures vii

Acknowledgments ix

Preface xi

Introduction: Teacher Training: "So Little for the Mind"? 3

Part 1 Teacher Training as "Grand Regulator": Establishing a Provincial Normal School, 1838-69

1 "The Grand Regulator": The Normal School Idea in Nova Scotia 25

2 "A Humiliating Defeat" and a Pyrrhic Victory: The Normal School Bill of 1854 48

3 "Several Pounds in Arrears": Training Begins at the Provincial Normal School 64

4 "The Scylla and Charybdis of Politics and Denominationalism": The Normal School and Its Critics 88

Part 2 Beyond "The Mere Giving of Knowledge": The Elusive Balance Between Scholarship and Training, 1870-1926

5 "A Democracy of Education": Schooling and Teachers for the Children of the "Labouring Masses" 109

6 The Normal School's "Duality of Function": Pedagogy and Teachers' General Education 131

7 "The Chloroforming Effect" of Popular Education: Training for Rural Teachers 156

Part 3 Training as a Woman's Story, 1870-1961: The Licensing, Training, and Education of Women Teachers

8 "A Concession to Circumstances": An "Unlimited Supply" of Women Teachers 185

9 "You Took What You Could Get": Why Women (and Men) Taught 214

10 "The Household Life of the Normal School": The "Normalization" of Teaching 241

Part 4 Conclusion: 1961-97

11 Haunted by Its Origins: Provincial Teacher Training after 142 Years 277

Appendix: The Regulation and Training of Teachers: A Chronology 301

A Note on Sources 309

Notes 311

Bibliography 359

Index 375

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