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Germ Any

schools, trade, continuation, germany, instruction, workers and industrial

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GERM ANY.

The awakening of Germany to the import ance of training her wage-earners took place about the time of the Centenntial Exhibition in Philadelphia in 1876, which showed Germany's products to be distinctly inferior to those of other continental countries. The French Ex position of 1878 still further manifested the lack of art in Germany's manufactured goods, and a commission was appointed to investigate reasons and to suggest action. The result of the work of this commission is now seen in the systems of trade and technical schools which have been organized, and in the reputa tion which Germany now has for the applica tion of science to industry. These schools have been great factors in this change. The German section in the Saint Louis Exposition of 1904 gave evidence that not only in the con nection of science with, but also in the applica tion of art to industry, that country has pushed to the front and now takes rank with or even excels those nations which have in the past con trolled the industrial field. Germany has be come thoroughly imbued with the idea that money devoted to trade instruction is wisely spent_ The earnest study which she has given to the subject has shown her the problem in its complexity and difficulty. The solution has been varied to suit the needs of different locali ties and also of all classes of workers from the wage-earners of small slall to the directors of great industries. A satisfactory interrelation between workers, employers and schools has been the aim as well as social efficiency.

These schools have been founded and are supported in various ways: by the state, by the municipality, by the commune, by the trade guilds, by associations of workers and by private individuals. There is a marked tend ency, however, for the governments of the German states to assume the entire control and administration, Small tuition fees are fre quently charged. In some of the great technical or technological institutes gratuitous instruction is offered to apprentices, but a fee is required of those who wish to study for more advanced positions. The tuition fees, however, cover but a small part of the expenses.

Germany is giving attention to the training of apprentices for trade in many classes of institutions. Different sections of the republic

vary in their way of meeting the problems. The following kinds of institutions are repre sentative: Trade Continuation (Fortbildung schulen) and Industrial Continuation Schools (Gewerbliche Fortbildungschulen) ; Trade Schools (Fachschulen) ; Industrial Drawing Courses; large technical .schools, with sections for apprentices; apprentice worlcshops (Lehr werkstatten).

Of these the Continuation Schools, generally conducted by trade guilds, are by far the most popular for training the ordinary wage-earner. General education is compulsory in Germany up to the 14th year. After this time a majority of the children of the laboring class must begin to work to contribute to the support of their families. The continuation schools are formed to aid those of both sexes who are forced to work, their object being to supplement the trade in which the worker is daily employed. In industrial centres the curriculum is con nected with the trades of the locality. In other sections, the character of the instruction may be general, commercial or even agricultural, as the need is felt. The courses deal more with the theoretical part of the work than with the ac tual manipulation of tools. The aim is to give such instruction as the worker cannot well get in the shops. It correlates with the daily shop work and thus aids the workers with the great est economy, as the students are productively employed and expensive laboratories and shops are not necessary.

The beneficial effect of these continuation schools on the development of industry and on the condition of the working class has been felt so keenly that the imperial government has pro vided by law that employers must always per mit their employees under 18 years of ige to attend such schools. The state has made this education compulsory, it being felt that all em ployees should have an education which will enable them to better understand the nature of their trade. It often happens that these busy day workers are too tired when night comes to benefit by such instruction, and week day and Sunday classes have, therefore, been opened.

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