HON. THEODORE M. HAMMOND Regent of the University of Wisconsin
Graded and secondary schools are established everywhere by state constitutions, and the prime characteristic of their establishment is that these schools shall be "free and without charge for tuition." This is the basic idea -- that educational facilities shall be available to all the children of the state and that all the necessary expenses of conducting them be borne by all taxpayers, whether these taxpayers be parents or not.
I think without exception every community in the country bears the expense of teaching and of the superintendence and maintenance of buildings and grounds. In most of the large cities the local government bears also the expense of furnishing school books, and in many communities, particularly the rural ones, free meals, or meals at exact cost, or free partial meals are not at all uncommon, but it is also true that these privileges are limited to bona fide residents of the community, and a nominal fee charged to non-residents to at least partially offset the cost of tuition.
While this is the situation with regard to the public school, and while there has never yet been any appreciable or expressed objection to this freedom of service, the situation with regard to normal schools and state universities is not so clearly defined by statute or by custom, and a greater or less degree of opposition to the entire freedom of so-called higher education is always present, though happily seldom insurmountable. True, state uni-