ANGELA MELVILLE EDUCATIONAL PLAN 1929

Pine Mountain Settlement School
Series 09: Staff/Personnel
Series 13: Educational Programs

ANGELA MELVILLE EDUCATIONAL PLAN 1929

Like many teaching employees at Pine Mountain Angela Melville was asked to develop a plan for her educational program at Pine Mountain Settlement School.  Unlike many educational plans that focus on a program of discrete subject areas, Miss Melville’s plan was more far-reaching and integrated n its concepts.

The March 15, 1929 plan had been sent to Darwin D. Martin, then Chair of the Pine Mountain School Board of Trustees, during a time of transition at the School. He had not forwarded it on as he appeared to believe that no action would be productive for Angela Melville’s position as as the new associate director charged with the educational program, was an interim position to lead .  Melville had been appointed by the board to fill the void left by the death of Ethel de Long Zande in April 1928.

Zande had planned and directed all educational and institutional programming since the School’s founding in 1913.  However, when Glyn Morris came on as the new Director of the School in 1931 and as Katherine Pettit phased out her responsibilities and retired in 1938,  Martin sent Morris a copy of the Melville plan with a note that he believed that Morris would “find it in accord with just what he [Morris] has in mind and along the line he is developing his thought.” Morris clearly derived strength for his progressive educational reform from the Melville document.

Mr. Martin continues

For the benefit of the new members of the Board, I will say that nothing has yet been done in the direction suggested by Miss Melville. The school is still maintaining 5th and 6th grades and is still rejecting applicants of whatever age who can not matriculate for 5th grade. 

Morris’ enhanced Melville plan was an educational plan that was not tied to conventional age and performance standards.  It proved to be very effective in the supportive and communitarian environment that the School developed for the youth of the Appalachian region particularly under the care of Morris and some of his successors.

The plan follows.


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