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4. The leaders among the students are usually quite responsive to a reasoned appeal for constructive service.

5. The faculty members will gain an understanding otherwise inaccessible of conditions of student life and work and will benefit in the development of constructive measures of any sort by the sense of general confidence that such cooperation tends to develop.

6. If you wish to do anything for students it is well to do it with them, otherwise they may think that you are doing it to them.

7. Administrative officers in particular will have the satisfaction of knowing after decisions have been made as a result of co-operation, that students, even though they dislike and disagree with the decision, know that it has been reached loyally, and is just and desirable in the honest opinion of those who made it.

8. The students gain those values that come from friendly association with older and more thoroughly trained men in investigative and constructive thinking; a broader and better proportioned knowledge of education as a whole and perhaps of the general social problems; the sense of freedom to suggest and to protest which should make a very great difference by the thwarting and the stimulation of creative thought and idealism; and the same sense of general confidence, already alluded to, which should lead to greater satisfaction in many phases of the under-graduate's experience while in college.

Rewards of Faculty-Student Co-operation The experience of faculty-student co-operation carries in itself its own immediate reward in the friendly association of older and younger members of the same community; and it has, I believe, possibilities for educational development that we have hardly begun to realize.

A considerable degree of moral development in right ideals, judgment, and wills is an essential prerequisite to student government. Students, even at eighteen or twenty years of age, are unable to bear all the responsibility of freedom and self-government at once. In any social group there must be obedience, for obedience is the law of the universe obedience voluntary, self-initiated, cheerful, if possible, but compulsory, if need be for any obedience is better than license and anarchy. Self-government needs to be given gradually, point by point, to a community as to an individual, until the group as a whole can take and use liberty and self-government. We each need to study, understand, and consciously develop the group spirit and group life in our own institutions.

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Responsibility increases as the child grows older. dependent upon detective and police powers and practices.

Realizing the importance of securing detailed data on the organization and administration at the present time of systems of student government, a letter was addressed to the presidents of sixty-five colleges and universities, including colleges for men and women of both junior and senior grades, public and private, and some of the leading universities in all parts of the country. Replies were received from fifty-five of these. In many instances the replies were in the form of personal letters from the presidents or deans, giving in detail the history and administration of the student government programs. Published material in the form of student's hand

books, catalogues, special announcements, etc., was also received.

Furthermore, letters were addressed to certain other leaders in college administration and higher educational thought asking for such information as they had in their possession bearing upon the "function and value of student government."

The writer is especially grateful to all who have so generously responded to his request for information and assistance.

It is evident, for the most part, that those in authority in the colleges and universities are exceedingly proud of the record made by their student government organizations. There were only a few instances in which the sentiment seems to be against student participation in the administration and control of a wide range of student problems.

Various Titles of Organizations

From the constitutions, letters, and other printed material received, eight different names of student government organizations appeared, as follows:

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8. Student Government Association.

The majority of the institutions reporting use the term "Student Government Association."

In practically every institution the faculty and administrative authorities are recognized as being finally responsible for all control within the institution. They may, however, and usually do, delegate certain power and responsibility to student organizations. They cannot, however, in delegating such power escape the final responsibility. The following quotation is typical of the provisions delegating such authority:

The President and Faculty of - — College hereby grant to the student government association, subject to revocation at any time, should a necessity therefor, in the judgment of the President and Faculty, arise, the following powers-.

While the phrasing of such grants of power vary, the principle remains the same in practically all instances. However, in some cases those powers reserved to the faculty and executive officers of the institution are clearly specified, as evidenced by the following:

It is understood, however, that the following matters are reserved to the faculty and executive officers of the college:

All academic matters.

2. All matters affecting the health of the college and community.







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The president reserves the right to handle special cases of discipline which in his judgment can best be handled in this way.

The purpose of student government organizations is sometimes stated in very general terms. and sometimes in considerable detail. For instance, in one constitution we find the following: "The purpose of this association shall be the government of the under-graduate student body." A more detailed statement of the purpose, as found in the constitutions, is illustrated by the following quotation:

The purpose of this Association shall be to encourage active co-operation in the work of self-government; to uphold the highest standards of honor and integrity in all matters of personal conduct; to strengthen cordial relations between faculty and students; to enact and enforce laws according to the Grant of Powers; to provide for the formation of an official body to give adequate and effective expression to the opinion of the student body in matters of general college interest.

The co-operative relations of the students and the faculty in matters of student control are illustrated by the following statement of purpose:

The object of this Association shall be to co-operate with the Faculty in securing the observance of the agreement between the students and the Faculty, and to control the conduct of the students in all matters not strictly academic.

Three Groups of Powers

Three groups of powers are usually provided for-legislative, executive, and judicial.

The legislative powers are vested in the association as a whole. Sometimes the whole association discharges the judicial functions also, though many constitutions reserve the judicial powers for the executive council. In one institution the legislative power is centralized in the senate.

The executive powers are invariably vested in the executive council or senate.

The administration of the systems of student government is lodged with a council or senate. In some institutions such council, or senate, is composed entirely of students, in others of both students and faculty representatives. In general, all classes (seniors, juniors, sophomores, and

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(f) One Sophomore member (acting as Corresponding Secretary).

Matriculation in college invariably involves membership in the student government organization where such an organization exists. One institution reported that all members of the faculty hold honorary membership in the students' organization, entitling them to participate in discussions without having a vote.

Two types of pledges are noted: One applying to all members of the association, and the other applying to members of the council or senate. The pledge applying to the officers and members of the executive body is practically an oath of office and represented as the following:

We agree on our honor that neither as individuals nor as members of any organization shall we be moved by personal or partisan influence in relations to matters pertaining to the Student Council and to the interests of the College.

Some constitutions prescribe in great detail the duties and powers of the various officers, as follows:

Powers and Duties.

Section 1. Of the Officers.

(a) The president of the Association shall call and preside over all meetings of the Association.

The president of the House of Representatives shall:

Preside at meetings of the House. Present bills and recommendations to the Council.

The vice president of the House of Representatives shall:

1. Assume duties of the president in the absence of or at the request of the president.

The secretary of the House of Representatives shall:


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The fees per session assessed for the support of student associations range from $1.00 to $2.75. Most institutions also report a budget committee with power to distribute the revenue thus collected among the various college organizations according to their respective needs and activities. From one institution head the following statement was received:

"This University is, I believe, the only school known to have adopted the central budget plan for the management of student activities. Work

ing through a central office, by which all activities are directed, the method of operation provides a special budget fund to take care of every campus undertaking recognized by the University, by means of a student fee included in the sum paid by each student at the beginning of the school year. Every organization is cared for both in a financial way and in the working out of its schedules.

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Most of these committees have obvious functions. However, it should be stated that the curriculum committee is responsible for recommending changes in the program of studies and curricula for the consideration of the faculty. This represents an organized effort to reflect student desires, needs, and criticism in curriculum revision.

Most student government organizations attempt, through the use of a point system, to regulate the participation of students in administrative positions. The purpose of this system is to prevent any one student from being overloaded with campus activities, and to have the benefit of such activities distributed among more students. By this system students are allowed to hold offices valued in number of points conditioned upon the scale of assigning values to each office. There is no uniformity even in the classification of officers or the value assigned to each. Some classify the offices as major, submajor, minor, and subminor, with values in points ranging from five for the subminor to thirty for the major.

Another institution arranges the point-values of various offices from nine to one and has the restriction that no student shall hold offices amounting to more than nine points in any one term.

The important consideration is not the number of points assigned to each office but the principles involved; namely, the prevention of overloading any student, and second, the guarantee that honors will be distributed.

In a paper on student government delivered at the meeting of the National Education Association in Salt Lake City in 1920, by Dean Kerr of Milwaukee-Downer College, Milwaukee, Wis., we find the following statements:

1. Student government is one expression of

a whole democratic movement. It is a part of the same movement that has caused faculties to seek by committees, representatives, and general vote, a share in the government of the institution they serve instead of leaving all responsibility and initiative to presidents and trustees. 2. Not government but the student is the center of our thought. Student government is not an end but a process. Social efficiency can be produced only by participation in the activities of society.

3. Student government does not imply turning the entire government of the institution over to students. The best conditions in modern family life come from cooperation between older and younger members, parents and children, so also must faculty and students co-operate if we are to have the best conditions of government and community life for all. A member of the faculty must be guide, counsellor and friend, and adviser and not a supervisor.


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Opportunity is offered for training in and practice of the principles of co-operation. Student government organizations recognize the fundamental aims of modern education.

Provision is made for a convergence of the student-faculty view point on all matters connected with college and university life. Student government is generally recognized as a privilege and a challenge. 14. The ideal student government emanates from the student body because willingness to assume responsibility cannot be delegated nor legislated.

Certain limitations reported in the letters received that deserve consideration are:

1. There is a tendency on the part of officers

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Student-faculty co-operation in government in colleges is fundamentally sound and necessary because:

1. The broad, general principle evolved out of all concrete efforts to establish government and secure justice is that group interests and in general, group judgments, are superior to individual interests and judgments.

2. Just and stable governments must recognize the basic rights and privileges of the governed.

3. The fact that the governed have a part in determining the laws and regulations to be obeyed plays an important part in establishing a sound psychological basis for willing obedience.

4. College students as a group represent a superior or select class of citizens and can be relied upon to maintain the integrity and honor of their chosen institution as well as their individual honor.

5. Student government associations offer the best opportunity for the practice during periods of training and growth of the fundamentals of good citizenship in a democratic form of government and education.

Qualifications for School-Board Membership

"What educational and other qualifications should the state set up for school-board membership is a question that is sometimes asked. Among the many qualifications for such membership that may be found in the school laws are: Taxpayer, citizen, not a holder of another public office, good moral character, patron of the school, resident of the city for a specified time, able to read and write. In practice men and women of comparatively high educational attainments are selected for membership on city boards of education. According to a recent study made by Dr. George S. Counts, University of Chicago, twenty-three per cent of the members of city boards of education have attended elementary school, only thirty-one per cent have attended high school, and forty-six per cent have attended higher institutions of learning.

Professions on Board

"What vocations should have the largest representations on the board of education is another

question. No one can say with certainty that the board should be composed of a certain number of business-men, housewives, lawyers, ministers, physicians, grocery-men, and laborers. In practice, according to Dr. Count's study, the male members of city school boards belonging to the following occupations are: Proprietors, thirtytwo per cent; professional service, thirty per cent; managerial service, fourteen per cent; commercial service, six per cent; clerical service, six per cent; manual labor, eight per cent; agricultural service, two per cent; unknown, two per cent.

A Suggested Qualification

"One of the qualifications that some persons would set up for school-board membership is that the board member be a patron of the schools. Count's study shows that fifty-three per cent of the members of city boards of education have children in the public schools, and that fortyseven per cent do not have children in the public. schools.

"What the qualifications of school-board members should be depends to a certain extent upon what are considered the duties of such members. In brief, the chief qualification for school-board membership should be business sense, a strong desire to improve the schools, and a willingness to hand over the actual running of the schools to paid experts."-W. F. Deffenbaugh, chief of the city schools division, Bureau of Education.

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