Wage Earning and Education eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 130 pages of information about Wage Earning and Education.

Table 6.—­Educational equipment of the children who drop out of the public schools each year, as indicated by the grades from which they leave

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Grade    |    Number leaving
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4      |           70
5      |          440
6      |          960
7      |         1260
8      |         1630
|
I      |          890
II      |          590
III      |          150
IV      |         1410
--------------+---------------------
Total    |         7400
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Slightly less than one-fifth finish the high school course.  Nearly three-fifths drop out before entering the high school, and approximately three-eighths before reaching the eighth grade.

Under the present compulsory attendance law a boy who enters school at the age of six and afterwards advances at the rate of one grade per year until the end of the compulsory attendance period should cover nine grades—­eight in the elementary school and one in high school—­by the time he is 15 years old.  In actual fact, however, only about two-fifths get any high school training.  Nearly all of the rest take the eight to nine years’ attendance required by law to complete eight, seven, six, or even a smaller number of grades.

It is from this body of pupils that most of the wage-earners are recruited.  In the course of the survey several investigations were made for the purpose of finding out what educational preparation workers in various industries had received.  One of the most extensive of these was conducted in connection with the study of the printing industry.  Educationally the printing trades rank higher than most other factory occupations, yet the average journeyman printer possesses less than a complete elementary education.  Composing-room employees, such as compositors, linotypers, stonemen, proof-readers, etc., undoubtedly stand at the head of the skilled trades as to educational training, but it was found that only eight per cent were high school graduates.  Six per cent had left school before reaching the seventh grade, and 16 per cent before reaching the eighth grade.  The other departments of the printing industry made a much less favorable showing.

An investigation conducted by the Survey in the spring of 1915, covering 5,000 young people at work under 21 years of age, indicated that only about 13 per cent of these young workers had received any high school training and that less than four per cent had completed a high school course.  Over one-fifth reported the sixth grade as the last completed before leaving school, and nearly half had dropped out before completing the elementary course.  Less than seven per cent of the boys engaged in industrial pursuits had received any high school training and only 42 per cent had got beyond the seventh grade.  The educational preparation of the boys engaged in commercial and clerical occupations was somewhat better, nearly 22 per cent having attended high school one year or more; about one-half had left school after completing the eighth grade and nearly one-third had not completed the elementary course.

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Wage Earning and Education from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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