We then came to a realization that something was wrong; we found we
were failing too many children. We discovered that schools were losing their
holding power, and that drop-outs were far too numerous. Truancy was a recur.
ring and rather general problem. Then, very belatedly, individual differences
were discovered. We were shocked to learn of the spread in the range of the
I. Q. at any grade level. We discovered significantly that the mental age range
showed Ao homogeniety whatever in terms of the mental development of students
who were working together. Finally, convinced that children actually are
different, we came to three very important conclusions: (1) that we must dis-
continue our former unsuccessful efforts to make the students conform to a rigid
highly mechanized school program; (2) that we must instead adjust the school
program to the varying abilities and interests of students; and (3) that since the
student is a complete and complex mechanism, and since he must live in a
highly complex world, we must respect the wholeness of the individual student
by broadening the school program far beyond the drilling check-filing procedures
of the past.
Taking a point of departure from this briefly stated panoramic background of
educational development, I shall attempt to briefly outline some 6f the basic
principles involved in articulating a full program of vocational guidance. I agree
with the thesis that "Vocational Guidance is the full process of acquainting the
individual with the various ways in which he may discover and use his natural
endowments, in addition to special training from any source, so that he may live
and make a living to the best advantage to himself and country; that this process
begins with life and continues throughout its duration."
Articulation-the process of joining together the elements of such a program,
is necessary, therefore, if the objectives of self-realization, human relationships,
civic responsibility, and economic efficiency are to be realized. Articulation, I
repeat, is necessary in a full program of vocational guidance if we are to ac-
complish a continuous process designed to help the individual to choose to plan
for, to enter upon, and to make progress in any occupation.
It is commonly agreed that public education should prepare for life as well
as for entrance into college; and that the standard three or four year high school
curriculum does not satisfy all needs. In our democracy the education of the
child will eventually continue through high school and probably through tech-
nical institutes as well. There must be a reorganization of the high school to
accommodate its curricula to these needs.
Also, there is common recognition of the need for the mastery of basic intel-
lectual skills-reading, writing, arithmetic, and perforce thinking. You might
add an additional R-Respect-respect for constituted authority and the right
of others. In fact, educational trends seem to have taken a decided shift toward
a curriculum which will actually prepare all students for society, and for economic
efficiency in an American Industrial Democracy.
Any consideration, therefore, of some of the problems resulting from the
established conception of general education as it exists today, should not be con-
strued as criticism; but rather as an approach to the process of Articulation-
the joining together of theory and practice into a functional program of educa-
tion for optimum contributions to community life. The recent Prosser Resolu-