298 History of Wake Forest College
Such was the plan and purpose, and a good start was made towards
its realization. The schools were being improved and the Baptists
were rallying to their support. And in particular they were very
valuable in preparing students for Wake Forest College; in the years
1892 to 1914 the College had to meet strong competition in securing
new men for its classes; for many students State College of Raleigh
and not Wake Forest provided the instruction desired; for other
students the University of North Carolina had attractions too strong to
be resisted; but in these years, thanks to the high schools under
Baptist control, the enrollment of students in the College shows an
almost unbroken gradual increase-191 in 1892-93; 260 in 1895-96;
276 in 1899-1900; 328 in 19,03-04; 368 in 1906-07; 403 in 1910-11;
451 in 1913-14. From the larger towns, like Raleigh, Wake Forest
was not getting many students in these years, but it was getting an
increasing number from the denominational schools.
Hardly, however, had the Baptists of North Carolina become united
in their purpose to support a system of denominational academies and
colleges, when, in 1905, a movement was started which in the next
quarter of a century proved the utter undoing of every private and
denominational secondary school in the State that did not gain a
measure of safety for itself by becoming a junior college. This new
movement was that for a state-wide system of public high schools. It
owed its origin and much of its development to the wisdom and vision
of Dr. J. Y. Joyner, State Superintendent of Public Instruction, whose
plan for a system of state high schools was approved by the General
Assembly of the State in 1905.6
These public high schools met with much popular favor from the
first. In the two years 1906-07, 1907-08 one hundred and fifty-five
had been established, at least one in nearly every county in the State.
By that time the Baptists were already aware of
6 See Dr. Joyner's well-reasoned plea for the establishment of public high schools
in the Biennial Report of the Superintendent of Public Instruction of North
Carolina, for the years 1904-05 and 1905-06. This is among the most important of
our State papers.
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