for in America
, so far as I can judge, is the very same reform which is so urgently required here — a reform of secondary instruction.
The primary and common schools of America
we all know; their praise is in every one's mouth.
About superior or University instruction one need not be uneasy, it excites so much ambition, is so much in view, and is required by comparatively so small a number.
An institution like Harvard is probably all that one could desire.
But really good secondary schools, to form a due proportion of the youth of America
from the age of twelve to the age of eighteen, and then every year to throw a supply of them, thus formed, into circulation — this is what America
, I believe, wants, as we also want it, and what she possesses no more than we do. I know she has higher schools, I know their programme: Latin, Greek
, German, French, Surveying, Chemistry, Astrology, Natural History, Mental Philosophy, Constitution, Bookkeeping, Trigonometry, etc. Alas, to quote Vauvenargues again: “On ne corrigera jamais les hommes d'apprendre des choses inutiles!”
But good secondary schools, not with the programme of our classical and commercial academies, but with a serious programme — a programme really suited to the wants and capacities of those who are to be