The Industrialization of American Schooling

The Industrialization of American Schooling

There exists a link between democracy, industrialization, and universal education. The founding fathers of American Schooling System in the late 18th century, just after the Revolution, Thomas Jefferson and Noah Webster, came up with a different thinking. They believed that the American education system, similar to American Primary Schools today, should be the tool to create a uniform national culture by merging all nationalities and religions based on standardized texts which would get to the core principles of republican government. They had the vision of producing informed and educated people who can make sound decisions to make the American voting system successful. Unfortunately, this vision was not carried out and the country remained split, with many states staying independent from the country as a whole.

This education mess seemed to mimic the politics of the time being not uniform at all. The education was primarily administered by separate localities, without any coordination among them. At that time only the rich were able to afford the tuition fees required for public schooling; high school was even sparce, and college was nearly exceptional.

Horace Mann was another individual who saw the urgent need to develop a more efficient school system, and proposed the government to set up “common schools” as he named them, the schools funded by taxes in his state of Massachusetts. The idea soon spread to other states which on seeing the advantage of an educated work force began to pass other world powers in technology. It was then noted that these “common schools” were doing a commendable job of merging and mixing many different cultures in America.

By 1918, mandatory education laws were in place almost in every state government. These laws required students to attend school until the 8th grade or till the age of 16 at least. As most students used to quit school after the mandatory 8 years, high school continued to be a form of higher education.

Shortly after this, industrialization made another big push with the growing economy now nearly 95% of all people under the age of 25 entered high school and started to graduate. 67% of all of those graduates went on the college which was then the highest of any nation. Currently, the percentage of people going to college is higher than the percentage of people who went to high school in 1910. Looking for the best American School in UAE? Click here.