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ERIC Number: ED250482
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1984-Feb
Pages: 20
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: 0
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: N/A
Societal Uplift and Productive Efficiency: Corporate Use of Vocational Education in Ellsworth, Pennsylvania, 1900-1915.
Hyser, Raymond M.
About 1900, James W. Ellsworth created the educational system of Ellsworth, Pennsylvania. His aim was to have the system serve a dual purpose: the societal uplift of foreign miners to make them better citizens and the improvement of the company's productive efficiency. Ellsworth's school offered traditional courses along with training in English and a crude form of manual training designed to increase future mining productivity and improve the life of the workers. The paternalistic manual training program prepared both boys and girls for what the businessman believed would be their future roles in the coal fields. Boys learned how to use company-provided tools, especially woodworking equipment. As they grew older, they studied mining skills. Girls learned cooking and sewing almost exclusively. When the Lackawanna Steel Company revived the old training courses after buying the company and the town from Ellsworth, it followed Ellsworth's original program while expanding and improving the curriculum to meet not only its needs but also those of its workers. The success of its program can be measured in terms of the expanded course offerings--particularly vocational education courses and first aid and safety training--and the increased enrollments of children as well as the enrollment of workers in after-work programs. The program was particularly successful in training mine foremen and fire bosses. While this educational system was clearly a device to shape and manipulate workers with the company attitude toward work and life, it also provided the residents an opportunity they might never have had to learn a vocational skill and progress toward a mainstream American life-style. (KC)
Publication Type: Historical Materials; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Pennsylvania (Ellsworth)
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Conference of the Eastern Educational Research Association (7th, West Palm Beach, FL, February 9-12, 1984).