SALARY REDUCTIONS DURING THE DEPRESSION
IN addition to the numbers employed on the faculties of institutions of higher education during the depression years, it is also important to have facts concerning their income. In this chapter the materials gathered by the committee on salary reductions are presented.
1. How Extensive Was Salary Cutting during the Period 1930-1931 to 1935-1936? One hundred and four of the 125 institutions in the sample reduced salaries of the teaching staff at some time during the period between 1930-1931 and 1935-1936; 20 did not, and one college announced no cut in salaries but failed to pay in full.1 Cutting was thus the general policy: 84.0 per cent of the colleges, universities, and teachers colleges reduced the income of the staff, 16.0 per cent did not, although in some institutions the maintenance of salaries was accomplished by dropping staff members from the lowest rank. Some significant differences are seen from the data as presented in Table 8.
These points stand out clearly:
1. Salary levels were most successfully maintained among the eastern institutions. Approximately 70 per cent of them introduced salary reductions, most of the southern group did so, and 100 per cent of the western institutions made cuts. 2. Privately endowed institutions reduced salaries less generally than the other two groups. Only 65.1 per cent of the private institutions represented in the sample reduced salaries; 92.6 per cent of the denominational institutions, and 94.5 per cent of the public institutions did so.
Here is revealed a sensitivity of public institutions that is to reappear frequently in this report. It will be recalled from the preceding chapter that the number of faculty members at public institutions dropped more rapidly and again increased earlier than at the other types of institutions. With public education assuming a greater prominence at the higher level, the question may pertinently be asked, How far can the development of public education go, at the same time maintaining standards that are unquestioned, if there cannot also be guaranteed to the staff members some protection against salary fluctuations____________________