The courier. (Lincoln, Neb.) 1894-1903, April 05, 1902, Image 1

Below is the OCR text representation for this newspapers page. It is also available as plain text as well as XML.

' They are Advancing Rapidly Along Educational Lines
Despite the Depressing
Influence of an Overlap which Prevents Proper Development
Eighteen public school serve to edu
cate the young of Lincoln, many of the
surrounding country and even a few
from surrounding states. It costs a
great sum of money and yet little more
is expended now than in 1892 when
there were 1,000 less students and the
means for raising money were no bet
ter. During the hard times an over
draft began to grow and it attained
such size that years will be required to
wipe it out, If the present rate is
maintained. Meantime the growth of
the schools will be retarded. Even
under the circumstances they have
made an excellent record for advance
ment. But O that overdraft!
It is a black cloud that overhangs
the school board. Whenever anybody
speaks of raising the salaries of teach
ers or janitors, whenever anybody'
talks of libraries and supplies that
would facilitate the work of the stu
dents, two or three members point
trembling fingers at the cloud and then
they all shudder and pronounce the
magic word "economy." It is the big
gest word in their dictionary.
This overdraft is $77,291. As a re
sult of the vigilance of the economy
committee of the board this was re
duced $3,000 last year and now the esti
mates are that $20,000 more will be
lopped off by the end of the present
Were this $20,000 devoted to school
purposes, says Superintendent Gordon,
things would be running finely and the
teachers would be receiving salaries
something like those paid their fellows
in other towns of the same size. Some
other way should be devised to subdue
the overdraft. It could be funded into
the bonded debt, says Mr. Gordon. This
has been suggested before, but no one
has shown an inclination to push the
project. If It were done payment
could be made In another way and
money that is switched from the ne
cessities of the schools could be turned
to much better use. The levy of twen
ty mills authorized by the last legis
lature Is not very big. It would do
the work if the assessment were high
er. The trouble Is that the legislature
which raised the levy at the same time
lowered the county assessment and
counteracted Its own efforts. People
think twenty mills is heavy taxation.
They are hurt before they feel It. They
pay school taxes on the county assess
ment and with that at low ebb they
really suffer not at all. By all means
the schools should be severed from sa
loons, says Mr. Gordon.
'It was a brilliant move on the part
of saloon men," says he. "when they
propelled to success the idea that the
license money they pay should -be de
voted to the schools. It was a scheme
to hitch the two together in a way to
make the saloon seem a necessary in
stitution. Now 'the people hesitate to
separate th"in for fear the schools will
suffer. If wujv clever. The proper
way to keep the schools in funds is by
direct taxation. The present levy of
twenty mills would be wholly suffi
cient If the county assessment were
only raised."
And the Lincoln schools deserve bet
ter financing. ' They have made ad
mirable progress but they could make
more If they only had leeway. The
average membership Is 5,485 and the
average per capita expense of each
one is $21.54. In 1892 the average mem
bership was 4,443 and the per capita
expense was $25.19. This is a difference
of over $3. That much more was deT
voted to the education of the young
folks in those days. The total enroll-
estimated they will be $93,538. Jani
tors, last year, $7,715.20, this, $8,250.75;
repairs, last, $4,603.33, this,. $4,500; fuel,
last, $4,026.91. this. $4,000; rent, last,
$366.73, .this, $174; stationery, last,
$1,064.82; supplies, this,, $2J336.90; office
expenses. last, $2,280.43, this, $2,300;
supervision,, last, $3,999.80, this, same;
printing, Jast, $640.40; fire Insurance,
last,. $922.50t this, $1,000; census, last.
$473.68,' this, $352.96; legal, last, $158.53.
this, $155; furniture, supplies and
printing, this year, $3,000; Interest on
warrants, last, $5,388,37, this, $5,300;
interest on bonds, last, $4,382.36, this,
$3,000; miscellaneous, last, $2,819.45,
this, $3,000; real estate and buildings.
1S91 1 108,133.43
1892 111,924.72
1893..: ..... 91.017.29
1896 ....' S9.993.ll
1S97 .7 95,111.56
1898 97,299.67
1899 103,524.87
Four new buildings have been erect
ed this year or are at Botne stage in
the process. They are the Capitol an
nex, at a cost of $8,000 with $3,960 added
for heating and plumbing; the Whlt
tier addition at $8,000, $2,000 more for
heating; Randolph, new building, $9,800,
heating $2100; Central, the new grad
ed school, growing on the old high
- I ' -.. V
'tiMir1. . l""""L.r"MtL 'Wift- .B i a.
?x fc1HpH""!""""'j""""""""""""""""""""""
HKHHa& --'lMrLBHaQi:ll
""""""K2IIH""Ha3l I HaiHv.r"
i ''rH
f- .bB - ' "- 'fsz,LK' -"a""""""""
""""""""""""""""""""""""KA r t""""""""""""""""""""""""""r-
""""""""""""""""""""""""""r """""""""""""""""""""""""""
?"r - - - - '"p - - e '-Bti
ment Is 7,147; In 1892 it was 6,400. The
average attendance Is 5,156; In 1892 It
was 4,196. The average attendance at
the present time is thus about 1,000 In
excess of that of 1892. The total ex
pense of running the schools then was
$111,924.72. Last year the cost was
$118,257.47 and the overdraft was re
duced $3,000.
Last year the salaries of teachers
amounted to $87,272.68. This year it Is
Inst, $4,401.45, this, $60,325; school fur
niture, last, $636.81; teachers library,
$3.65; office furniture and fixtures, last,
$17.50; text books, last, $3,422.37, this,
These are the total sums expended
to run the schools in past years. No
books were kept prior to 1887.
18S8 $100,553.00
1889 93,451.00
1890 .-104,557.00
school campus, $23,347, bids for heating
to be opened at the next meeting of
the board of education. Mr. Gordon
thinks there Is a need for a new
twelve room mate for the Bancroft, a
six room Hayward twin and another
high school.
At present the two high schools are
overcrowded. The basement of the old
one Is used as a common school and
the pupils here will be transferred next