Pioneers of Early Childhood Education: A Bio-Bibliographical Guide

By Barbara Ruth Peltzman | Go to book overview
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Lucy Craft Laney (1854-1933)
Founder of the Haines Normal and Industrial Institute, Laney set high academic standards by insisting on a liberal arts curriculum rather vocational training for her students. Laney taught in the black public schools of Georgia; developed a program to educate nurses (which became the School of Nursing at Augusta University Hospital); developed a teacher education program; emphasized academic education for girls leading to college entrance; fought for the establishment of Georgia's first Black public high school; and established Augusta's first kindergarten in the early 1890s with contributions from the Lucy Laney League in New York. She was a member of the National Association of Colored Women, the Southeastern Federation of Women's Clubs, the Georgia State Teachers Association, the National YWCA, and served as chairperson of the Colored section of the Interracial Commission of Augusta. In 1886, the year the Haines Institute was chartered by Georgia, she was the only Black woman administrator of a major school affiliated with the Presbyterian Church. Laney was praised by President William Howard Taft for her tireless work in educating her students to reach their highest potential as human beings.
PRIMARY SOURCES
283. "A Progress Report From the Founder of the Haines School". Church at Home and Abroad ( August 1893): 140. Describes visitors to the school, states that the reputation of the school was spreading, and reports the number of students enrolled. A brief account of the school seven years after its founding.
284. "The Burden of the Educated Colored Woman". A paper presented at the Hampton Negro Conference Number 3, July 1899. Conference Proceedings Report, pp. 37-42. Asserts that ignorance and its companions -- shame, crime, and prejudice -- are the burden of the educated Black woman. Discusses the need for education that stresses character and moral building by female teachers who are role models and the importance of hygiene and family structure. Posits that the burden's of ignorance, immorality, and prejudice can be lifted by culture, character, and money, and that this must be done through better homes, clean homes, better schools, and work. Places the responsibility on educated women to do this work to save the future because she feels women are the best teachers at all levels from kindergarten through college.

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