University of Missouri as a centralizing factor in the educational activities of the state
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In many lines of activity to-day, there is a strong tendency toward centralization, for organization is a great solvent of waste. In the business world this has resulted in the corporations of the country. In the state it has led to a strong central government. In the social world it has resulted in the organization of clubs and societies for the purpose of forwarding any social movement that interests any particular locality. This centralizing tendency as manifested in the various industrial, governmental and social activities of to-day is also affecting educational activities. The school as the institution of society for making its members efficient in social life is not as effective as it should be. This is evident from the fact that many children leave school at an early age, and so the loss to the state due to the failure of these children to complete their school work is very great. That many children do leave school sooner than they should is, in a large measure, a result of the lack of uniformity in the standards of education, the overlapping of school work where pupils pass from one locality to another and a lack of the proper correlation of the different classes of public schools. The purpose of this paper is to trace historically (1) the origin of the common schools in Missouri and the important stages of their development to the time when they first came under the influence of the university, (2) the origin of the university and the most important stages of its development to the time when it began to influence the common schools of the state, and (3) the leading influences toward centralization that have been exerted by the university upon the common schools together with the results thus far accomplished.