School Review
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The 1921 School Review of Jefferson County, Texas

A Print Replica of this Historic Document

This second edition of "The 1921 School Review of Jefferson County, Texas" is a print replica of this document that was donated to WT as he describes in the introduction. When I read about this document in WT's article, my curiosity made me seek it out and when I did, I immediately thought it was worth republishing for its historic value. Certainly, WT felt the same way since his immediate inclination was to donate a copy to Tyrrell Historical Library.

The quality of the document is not ideal (it was published more than one hundred years ago in 1921), but is readable and worth the effort for the photographs alone. I spent a lot of time enhancing the images to improve the quality of the scans to the best of my ability.

William T. Block III
W. T. Block's son.

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As I write this column, I am looking at a copy of "The 1921 School Review of Jefferson County, Texas," perhaps the oldest and most authoritative, surviving analysis of the early county school system. This is the second copy I have owned; the first was given to me by E. S. "Red" Bellair of Port Neches, who had found the copy in a hidden niche in the old C. O. Baird School. I promptly donated that copy to Tyrrell Historical Library.

The 104-page booklet contains excellent photos of the buildings, many school boards and faculties, and the student bodies of all the schools then under Jefferson County School Superintendent Mary Sandell. There are also articles about the new A. and M. Rice Experiment Station at Amelia; the Interscholastic League competitions; and the county school health department.

There are also excellent photos throughout of the old Beaumont High School on College Street; the South Park School buildings on Highland Ave.; of all the Port Arthur schools; and of the French district schools. A separate volume was published earlier about Charlton-Pollard High School.

As of 1921 some teachers still lacked college degrees and taught only with county certificates of qualification. The new minimum teacher salary was $100 a month, up $45 from 1917-1918. Minimum salaries for principals and superintendents were $2,400 annually, up $1,500 from 1917-1918. All schools were then teaching 9 months terms, although some schools earlier had taught only 6 or 7 months in the year when funds were exhausted. Most schools by then were teaching through the tenth grade, although all schools had an 11th grade added by 1925. Six of the fourteen school districts provided cottages for single women teachers.

Fragment of a newspaper article written about "The 1921 School Review of Jefferson County, Texas" by W. T. Block.

First Pages

The following are examples of what the print replica pages look like:

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Unless otherwise indicated, the material published on this site is copyrighted by William T. Block.
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