Your series on the teaching profession brings to mind the historical truism that the more things change the more they remain the same. On my desk is a report compiled in 1850--almost 150 years ago--by then-commission of education for Connecticut, Henry Barnard. He found that all nine normal schools in America (two in Canada were included) were deficient because:
1. Pupils are admitted without adequate preparatory attainments and without sufficient test of their "aptness to teach."
2. A majority of pupils do not remain a sufficient length of time to acquire that knowledge of subjects and methods.
3. There are no endowments to reduce the expense of a prolonged residence to a class of poor but promising pupils.
4. They are not provided with a sufficient number of teachers for the number of pupils admitted.
His report included an analysis by and from each of the schools with many statements that could have been included in The Times series without changing a word.