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    How you going to keep ‘em down on the farm?

    Schools were accused of contributing to the exodus of young men from the farm to the cities a century ago, in a speech by Andrew Pattullo, member of the Ontario legislature for South Oxford, to the Western Ontario Dairymen’s Association. As reported in The Weekly Sun, a farm newspaper, on January 21, 1897.

    What is the effect of our educational system here? It is to draw our people from the farm. It is true, we have agricultural text-books, but their use is optional. Agriculture should be made an obligatory subject in village and rural schools, and teachers should be prepared to teach it. Instead of spending our energy in turning out lawyers, doctors and teachers, we should prepare children for farm life. All the books should be colored so as to magnify the beauties of life on the farm. The trend of population to the towns is ten times what it formerly was. This is largely due to a defect in our educational system. We should change the system so as to turn the trend the other way.

    The future of the country depends on agriculture and the future of agriculture depends on the assistance given to it in our schools.


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    TAGS: Agriculture, Youth, Lifestyles, Farms, Education, Textbooks

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