EDUCATION

Pine Mountain Settlement School
Series 13: Education

EDUCATION: Holdings – Library Filing Cabinet

EDUCATION AT PMSS:
Boarding School (1913-1949)

Co-operative School
Community School (Grades 1–3, 1949-1972)
Pre-School, “Little School”


In her thoughtful “A Record of Pine Mountain Settlement School,” Evelyn K. Wells wrote succinctly about Education at the School. She said

“We have always been primarily a school. It is book-learning our children have come for, and book-learning that has explained Pine Mountain to the countryside. The life of the school adjusted itself around lessons even in days when the most important thing in the world seemed to be to get the food cooked, the clothes washed, fires built, corn hoed, buildings built. We did not wait for a schoolhouse to begin teaching; the House in the Woods took care of the children till snowfall, until 1918, when they were distributed in the living rooms of various cottages; or, the first three years at the Masonic Lodge over Mr. Nolan’s store. The day after the new Mary Sinclair Burkham Schoolhouse burned to the ground, classes were resumed in any odd corner of the grounds that was available. Study hour, from the very beginning, was impressed upon us as a sacred thing…”

As the School evolved, the idea of what constituted a well-educated individual also evolved. The concept of a work-study program was in place from the very beginning of the School when Uncle Wiliam Creech saw an educational plan serving the entire surrounding community. Katherine Pettit, as Mary Rogers in her History of Pine Mountain Settlement School noted, was interested in traditional schooling but

“… she [Katherine Pettit] envisaged also a settlement serving a whole community in its economic, health and cultural development. A settlement would not attempt to substitute an outside culture for the indigenous. It would try to strengthen people’s faith in their own heritage, making use of both the mountain environment and their unique traditions as media for learning. It would help people to retain a secure sense of their own worth as human beings.”

Print Shop, c. 1942: Student at printing press (1). Harmon Fdn. movie still. [pm_harm_094.jpg]

A work program always accompanied the traditional educational curriculum even in the earliest years. And, as the school moved into the industrial age, the idea of an industrial education grew. Staff and students shared in the work program and a job well done was measured by an individual assessment of work well done (or, not) and entered into the student record. Uncle William, one of the School’s founder had said to Pettit and de Long when they came to build the School that.”It’s good for folkses’ characters to work with their hands.”

The building of character through manual labor also meant learning to work together and in the 1930’s and 1940s the introduction of a co-op module in the second year of study assured students of an experience working within a consumer’s cooperative. The Co-Operative Movement was worldwide and the elements of this consumer cooperation were studied from an international perspective.

In the third year of their high school curriculum of the 1930’s and 40’s, the students focused on the surrounding community.  The educational module looked at the settlement movement and its origins and how early work in urban settlement environments could be adapted to the rural community. The community groups under supervision visited in the nearby homes and offered basic hygiene, nursing, and literacy and recreation to their neighbors.

Education in civic engagement also extended to self-governance at the School and the Citizenship Committee comprised of students and staff devised the rules for living and the enforcement of those rules.  They also meted out punishment on their peers when rules were broken.

The Second World War brought most of these programs to an end and by 1949 the School had taken another educational direction that joined the Pine Mountain community with the growing public instruction of the county. True to its history of adaptation, Pine Mountain charted a new educational course. The Community School took the best of the Boarding School years that ended in 1949 and merged them with essential elements of the local school system. The Board of Trustees also appointed a “Key Committee” to study the prospects for the School that would not lose sight of the basic mission of the institution — Uncle Wiliam’s mandate that the campus be used ” … for school purposes as long as the Constitution of the United States stands, hoping it will make a bright and intelligent people after I’m dead and gone.”

 

Alvin Boggs in the classroom, 1965. [boggs_004.jpg]

In the interest of maintaining its “school purpose,”  Pine Mountain forged a new relationship with Berea College which mandated that the School would continue to operate as an independent entity, but in an affiliation with the college. The idea that Pine Mountain would have the advantage of Berea’s expertise, its student teachers, and its capable members represented on the Board was, as Mary Rogers put it, a leap of faith. What was immediately evident was that the School would no longer control its educational curriculum and that it would be charged with adapting to the public school regimen. 

In was during this period of transition that the “Little School” or pre-school was born and in the early sixties, Pine Mountain was leading the way in the new national program called “Headstart.”


Pine Mountain Settlement School PMSS SERIES IV – LIBRARY FILE, 1911-1983, 1983-present Series IV: LIBRARY FILE, 1911-1983 [Originally boxed 55 –]

CURRENTLY INCLUDES ADDITIONAL PMSS SUBSERIES FILES Guide to Library File, 1911-1983, 1983 – present (By Series)

Organization of the following files is THEMATIC, not alphabetical.

SERIES 13: EDUCATION Education Boarding School (1913-1949) Co-operative School Community […]


EDUCATION: Holdings – Library Filing Cabinet

SERIES ID# ALT ID# TITLE SUBTITLE DATE NOTES
13 1 Education: Memos, Writings, Plans, Philosophy Boarding School, Co-op, Youth Guidance Institute
13 2 Education: Community-Based Education at Pine Mountain School Oldendorf
13 3 General Admin.: Boarding School Duplicates
13 4 Education: Educational Survey Argetsinger’s Report
13 5 D1.19 Education: PMFC Co-operatives 1941
13 6 Life and Work, School Playground and Pool 1949-1972
13 7 D1.17 Community Group  1942
13 8 Co-op Groups of 1940-1941 Cooperative 1940-1941
13 9 Education: Curriculum 1937-1938
13 10 Education: Miscellaneous Meals Due; Lists of Teachers & Students & Amounts Owed for Meals 1959-1962
13 11 School Lunch Menus 1957-1958, 1960-1961
13 12 “Progressive Education in the Kentucky Mountains” By Glyn A. Morris 1937-1938
13 13 Education and Curriculum 1939 Community Service in the Curriculum; Apr-May 1937 Evening Program; Sept 1938 Staff Institute Program; Assembly Programs, First Semester
13 14 Curriculum Schedule 1938-1939
13 15 Education: PMSS Future Educational Services n.d.
13 16 Education: H.S. Curriculum 1999 [?]
13 17 Picture Guides & Community School Program Bibliography
13 18 D1.11 Children’s Writing 1969
13 19 D1.27 Educational programming 1936, 1941
13 20 D1.32 Emotionally Disturbed Children Project 1975
13 21 D2.38 Pre-School 1963-1966, 1971
13 22 “Little School”

SEE:

GUIDE TO EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMS

EDUCATION – COMMUNITY/COOPERATIVE SCHOOL

EDUCATION – LITTLE SCHOOL

GUIDE TO EDUCATION SOURCES

Series 13: EDUCATION