Page:Statesman's Year-Book 1899 American Edition.djvu/872

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516

FRANCE

uormal school. A law of 1850 obliged every commuue with a population of 800 (extended in 1867 to communes with a population of 500) to have a school for girls. Since 1878 elementary education has advanced rapidly ; many schools have been built, the number of teachers and pupils has in- creased (until 1889), and the standard of education has been raised. In 1881 primal y instruction was made free, and in 1882, obligatory for children from 6 to 13 years of age. In 1886 the system of education was reorganised, and it was ordained that all public schools should be under the charge of laymen. In 1892 there were only 50 communes which had no primary school, public or private. In 1891 the total number of children of school age (6 — 13) was found to be 4,664,000. In 1891-92, 4,522,000 children of school age were enrolled in primary and infant schools in France, besides 74,800 in Algeria ; 64,400 were enrolled in secondary establishments, and about 5,000 taught at home. Thus the number of untaught children in France seems to be about 72,000.

In 1892 7 '5 per cent., and in 1897 4 '9 per cent., of the young men examined on the conscription list could neither read nor write.

The following table shows the number of elementary schools and pupils in France and Algeria for the school year 1896-97 : —

Public

Schools

Private Schools

Total

Pupils

Infant schools Primary and superior .

Total

2,574 67,579

3,109 16,075

5,683 83,654

729,648

5,531,418 i

1

70,153

19,184

89,337

6,261,066

The total number of primary pupils includes about 56,533 receiving higher primary instruction.

There was (in 1897) (without Algeria) one elementary school for every 438 inhal)itants, and 1 pupil in every six of the population. The number of primary public schools directed by clericals (France with Algeria) was in 1896 : 5 for boys, 5,146 for girls, and 498 mixed. In private education the number of lay schools was 611 for boys, 1,863 for girls, 467 mixed; and of clerical schools 2,779 for boys, 9,883 for girls, 307 mixed ; total number of pupils in private clerical schools, 1,209,697. The total number of teachers in lay elementary (infants' and primary) schools (public and private) was 108,189-; in clerical schools, 53,502. There were in 1892 87 normal schools for males, and 85 for females.

The public funds, communal, departmental, and State, devoted to primnry instruction in France amounted in 1855 to over twenty-five and a half million francs for obligatory expenses, in 1887 to nearly ninety-four million, in- cludhig voluntary expenses, and in 1892 (including Algeria), to a hundred and eighty-six and a third million francs for all expenses obligatory and voluntary. The expenditure of the State on public instruction in 1895 amounted to 190,554,000 francs ; in 1899 (estimates), 201,929,583 francs.