"How Far Should a State Undertake to Educate" 305
the last century it was the policy of the tax-supported educational
institutions that the public schools should not receive for their support
any of the revenues that were paid into the State treasury. But, as a
natural development from the publication of Dr. Taylor's paper a
change came. It was the friends of Wake Forest College, and in
particular J. W. Bailey and John E. White, who winning the support
of State Superintendent of Public Instruction, Charles H. Mebane,
initiated the movement for direct appropriations from the State
treasury for bringing the public schools to the standard prescribed by
the Constitution. This was begun in 1897 when a bill appropriating
$100,000 for this purpose was offered in the Legislature. Before the
committee to which the bill was referred it was supported by Bailey,
White and Mebane. It was opposed by the presidents of the State
University and of the State Woman's College in Greensboro, E. A.
Alderman and C. D. McIver, who were seeking larger appropriations
for their own schools. The result of their opposition was that in 1897
only $50,000 was authorized and that amount set about with such
restrictions that the weaker schools could not share in it. In 1899,
however, the full $100,000 was appropriated, and it was a Wake
Forest alumnus, Mr. Stephen McIntyre, who introduced the bill for it
in the
Later a second $100,000 was appropriated. Today we
have a State system of schools provided for by appropriations by the
Legislature, about thirty million dollars a year, and a nine-months
school is in the reach of every child. At the inception of the plan it
was fought vigorously by those who would have appropriations only
for the higher institutions of learning. It was originated and for the
most part carried through by alumni of Wake Forest College whose
interest in public schools had been stimulated by forces set in motion
by Dr. Taylor's How Far Should a State Undertake to
10 This bill was prepared by Supt. Mebane; see his Report for 1899-1900, p. 69.
See also address of John E. White, "When the Tide Began to Turn for Popular
Education in North Carolina," in Proceedings of 32nd Annual Session of the State
Literary and Historical Association of North Carolina, pp. 33ff.
11 The reader may find a fuller statement in Paschal's article, "The Truth as
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