Education: What Good Old Days?

The editor of The Clearing House, a secondary-school journal, was tired of complaints that school kids learned fundamentals better in the good old days. He didn't believe it. Last week Editor Forrest Long said it wasn't so: measured by a ninth-grade examination given in 1846, youngsters of 1947 had proved a little better taught than their great-grandparents in spelling, a lot better in arithmetic.

To make its point, The Clearing House sent out copies of the old exam to teachers from York, Pa. to Fort Worth, Tex. It was a tough one; the school kids in Springfield, Mass, who took the examination...

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