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Full text of "Observations on Upper Canada College"

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£~da^ /"^ff. UOJO 



^arbarlj College l-iljrarg 




ADDED TO THE 

PARKMAN COLLECTION OF 
CANADIAN HISTORY 



BY GIFT OF 

CLARANCE MACDONALD WARNER 



OBSERVATIONS 



ON 



UPPER CANADA COLLEGE. 



BY THE RET. J. H. HARRIS, D. D. 

PRINCIPAL, OF U. C. COLLEGE. 



TORONTO: 
Printed by Robirt Stantov, 164, King'»S(reet 

1836. 

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Har ard OoUegre H bt ' aiy ' 

Gift of 

Olarance MarDmnaJr? Wftmer. 
Jtlly 24 ,v.^]7 



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UPPER CANADA COLLEGE. 



It is not without hesitation that I venture to offer the following 
remarks on the subject of Upper Canada College ; i»iii as the 
head of a public Institution to which attention has of late been 
in a peculiar manner drawn, it wiH not, I trust, be deemed 
eitraordinary that I sliould feel some anxiety for its prospects 
and reputation, and a desire that, at least, it should not suffer 
from want of being properly understood. 

An opportunity, wbicli I hare for some time desired, is also 
tbus afforded me, of correcting an erroneous impretsion which 
I know to be extensively prevalent as to the kmd ofeducmHoH^ 
which is to be obtained at tfae College. The impression to 
which I allude is, that an exclusive, or almost esdusive, attention, 
is paid to the study of the Classics — how far the fact is otherwise, 
the statement which will be found below, and to which I invite 
particular altention, will sufficiently demonstrate. 

I cannot but regret the desire which has been manifested of 
investing this subject with a political character; of making it a 
party question, instead of considering it on its own intrinsic 



* Since writing ttM aboTe, I find impirssiaiig oi tfan nature are io much on 
the increase, that it would be wron^ to give an apparent countenance to tbeai ¥jr 
longer silence. For however desirable it may be that a place of public educatio* 
> should only vindicate itself by persevering in the faithful and unobtrusive discharge 
of its trust, Ihere is a point beyond which to suffer tfae unchecked spread of false 
ia^ressions, whether they arise £rom insufficient inquiry, or from nis-represen- 
tation, would be culpably to acquiesce in the injustice done to the Institution. I 
have not, however, attempted to correct false impressions by any particular notice 
of vague and unfounded reports, but have preferred giving an authentic detail of 
the course mtually pursued at tjie College, (as in the latter part of these 'Obser- 
vations/) and leaving public candour to compare mere assertions with that state- 
ment ; only requesting that those who interest themselves on the subject, will hesi- 
tate to believe any thing they may hear which is not reconcileable with the con- 
seientiotts desir*? and endeavour, on the part of the College, to carry into full effect 
every part of the system here described. 



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merits. The College is an Institution for the Instruction of 
whatever youth may choose to resort to it, ip literature, science, 
and morality — not in politics, of any shade or degree. I appeal 
to the knowledge of those who have been at the pains to inform 
themselves, whether such be not the case; and to the candour., 
of those who have not made enquiry, to believe my assertion, 
that politics form no part of the instruction given to pupils of 
Ujjjier Canada College. V * 

^^ As the^ representation, introduced into the Seventh Grievance\^ 
Report of the House of Assembly, that '* Upper Canada College 
is upheld at great public expense, with high salaries to its prin- 
cipal masters, but that the Province generally derives very lit- 
tle advantage from it, and that it might be- dispensed with,V has 
received the consideration of the Colonial Minister : I propose^ 
with all due respect, to make this representation the subject of 
the following remarks — availing myself of the opportunity to add 
^ any other considerations which may appear to bear on the gene- 
ral question. 

I would first, however, beg permission to notice the assertion 
made in the Address of the House of Assembly to His Excellency 
Sir John Colborne, at the opening of the late Session, '* that 
only the sons of the wealthiest inhabitants receive their education 
at the College." i*- 

It is true I have not any more authentic knowledge of the 
relative wealth, than 1 have of th^ religious or political creeds, 
of the parents of the majority of the pupils of Upper Canada 
College ; but I believe that a reference to the list of boys now 
at the Institution, as. well as to the names of all those who 
have been entered since its commencement, would satisfy any 
> one acquainted with the circumstances of the inhabitants of the 

Province, that a large proportion of the pupils would not come \ 
\, under the description of '*sons of the wealthiest inhabitants.^' 
And as further evidence to the same purport, I refer to the names 
of some former pupils of the College, appended to an Address 
presented by them to His Excellency Sir John Colborne, on the 
; occasion of his departure. 



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/U^id the charges for education at the College been fixed at so 
high a rate, as to exclude the children of those in moderate cir- 
cQiOstances, exception might well have been taken at the advan- 
tage given to the wealthy ; bat the terms being such as to render 
the College accessible to almost every condition, it is surely 
no just ground of complaint that the children of the rich are / 

\allowed to participate in a benefit which is open to all. / 

And, viewing the subject in another light, let it be remem- 
bered how many have become, and are daily becoming, wealthy 
by their own industry and exertions ; aird should such parents, 
after being allowed the advantages of a sound education for their 
. children, at a public Seminary, whilst they were in narrower 
circumstances, be denied those advantages when their success- 
ful application has raised them to independence? — Anyone 
considering the condition of this young and rising country, and 
how rapidly honourable exertion may advance a man from slen- 
der means to affluence, must feel the injustice of attaching- to 
his success the penalty of being disqualified for a participation 
in public advantages such as these. 

As the objection which I have here considered, stands in a 
great measure detached from any others, and appeared capable 
of so simple a refutation, I have thought it desirable to dispose 
of it, in limine^ by showing, in the first place, ihat it is founded 
in error ; aiid, in the second place, that had the fact been as 
represented, it would have afibrded no valid argument against 
the beneficial effects of the College as a public Institution, from 
which it could never be desirable to exclude the children of the 
rich because its advantages are placed within the reach of all 
classes of the community. 

It is represented that Upper Canada College is upheld at 
great public expense, with high salaries to its principal masters. 
With regard to the amount of the respective salaries of the 
Principal and Masters, as it is not my intention to involve per- 
sonal considerations on this occasion, I merely observe,' that the 



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•alaries ar« not f o b%h ai, on the average, ihtj «re io rimilar 
Iintittttiom in England ; and it coald not reatoMbly be expect^di 
ifaat Masters, possessing the requisite qualifications» would t»e 
iwhiieed to eonse out to thie coantry for a reiMoeration mu/ok 
inferior to that wUcfa is atUcbed to similar sitaattons ia sIm 
midst of their connexions at home ; but, on the contrary, ie 
might fairly be argued that the remaneration should be higher 
here than for like duties in England, in order to compensate for 
the sacrifice of interests and prospects which is necessarily 
involved in the acceptance of a distant appointment. 

As to tlie ' public expense' at which the College is upheld, 
I would submit that, allowing it to be, io itself, apparently 
great, two considerations arise with respect to the benefits 
purchased at this expense, which arise with respect to any pur- 
ehaseable commodity — first, can the commodity be pMcnred 
in every respect of equal goodness at a less price ?— and secondly, 
if it be necessarily an expensive article, is it worth the price to 
the purchaser? / 

Now as to the first question, it is a certain fact, that e liberal 
and comprehensive education cannot be provided but at a con- 
siderable expense, to be borne ztm^tx^rt* The people in 
general, in a new country, cannot bear it firom their private 
means, and it must therefore, if provided for at allj be borne 
by the public resources* Even*io the old countries of Europe, 
and particularly in England, all the leading Seminaries are 
supported by endowments ; and limited indeedi in comparison 
with what they actually are, would be the means of Education 
in Great Britain, had not Royal, ^nd individual munificence, 
founded Schools and Colleges for the promotion of learning, 
and made such permanent provision for the maintenance of 
Tutors and Masters, as leaves little comparative expense to be 
defrayed by many parents, whose sons must otherwise have 
wanted that which has proved to them more valuable than tfie^ 
richest inheritance. 



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To this pfttriotic and geacroia regard of our forefatbers for 
tbo interests of karningt it it to be ascribed tbet, . in Englaad, 
to many men of bamble origin bave been enabled to raiie 
thamselvet to prond difttinclion as statesmen» and scbolars^ and 
pbilosopbers. Looking partiealarlj at the profetsion of tbe 
Law, how many of our most considerable families^ and of our 
nobility, are iodebtedi fior their present-fiosiilioo in society* to the 
fiaciUiieft which happily ejiisted for the edacation of that ancestor 
whose superior talenta first raised himself and his name froon 
humble obscurity ? 

. This . alhision reminds me of the recommendation which 
was made at a popular meeting in this place, some few years 
siocet that (he Home Government should send out Judges 
to Canada from the English bar, till the improved state of 
education in the Province shoitkl reader such a course an- 
Bccessary. Now in one point of view, I should certainly not 
bave adverted . to this circumstance as nMikiag for my present 
argument ; for to nothing could a stronger appeal be mude In 
proof of the sufficiency of the existing means of education! 
than to the actual discharge of the judicial functions in Upper 
Canada : but I mi^ iairly be allowed to infer, from the feet of 
such an opinion having been expressed, that it was not gene- 
rally considered that the then available means of education 
were adequate to the requirements of the Cofony ; and that 
therefore an Institution which is every year sending out youths, 
not inferior in classical knowledge to the greater part of those 
who leave our public Schools in England for the Universities, 
and with the addition of many useful attainments whick the 
latter do not generally possess, is not conferring unimportant 
advantages on the Province at large, and could not be dis- 
pensed with, but at the certainty of still keeping the standard 
of education below that point which is correspondent with the 
generaT advancement and exigencies of the commanity; 

But to return from this longer digression than I had intended* 
If in so old, and populous, and wealthy a country as England, 



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liberal education has been maintained at an expense so macli 
greater than is covered by the mere payment made by indir 
vidual parents, for the instruction of their children, it is not to 
be expected that the case should be otherwise here ; but rather 
that the expense of a higher eriler of education should, for 
some time to come, appear more' disproportionate to the extent 
of good effected, than where society has been increasing, and 
advancing for ages* This is a consequence necessarily resulting 
from the nature of the case; and for the same reasons, the dis- 
proportion between the expense and the amount of advantage 
diffused through the Province, would be still more apparent 
with regard to a University, the expenditure on which must be 
manifold greater than that on an introductory Seminary, wlrilst* 
the nnmber of individuals who wodd probably avail thenfiselves- 
of the advantages of the former, could not, for many years, • 
be at all equal to the aumber of pupils receiving. their ed^a- 
tion at the latter. And yet I never heard any objection of 
this nature to the University, as though its endowment were 
too great, or as though the Province in general were likely to 
derive very little advantage from it; for, besides the fact, that- 
the expense of education beyond a certain grade, increases in 
a rapid ratio as the standard rises, it must be obvious With 
respect to the higher puri^uits of^learning and science, that the 
vtaste and demand for them, in a new . community, must not 
only be encouraged, but, in »- great measure, created; and* 
this is to be done, not by a tardy fupply of facilities and assis-; , 
tance, only afforded when the necessity can no longer be dehied^ 
but. by providing opportunities tti adtmnce^ which may elicit 
latent genius, and lead the way 4o the Idftier paths of know-' 
ledge. To. delay, therefore, the commencement of the Uriiver- • 
sity till a much larger nuitiber of students actoally'|lre$eDted 
themselves to enter its walls, woulji be to postpone the cultiva- 
tion of a field till a few spontaneous ears had multiplied' them- 
selves to a full crop; forgetting the danger that the seeds thus 
left to themselves may perish, whereas if carefully collected 



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9 

and eukivated, ihey would probably in a few seasons produce 
ah abundant increase. 

The above desultory remarks may perhaps suffice to shew 
that education of a superior kind is, to a certain extent, neces- 
sarily an expensive commodity. I proceed to the question, 
whether it is worth the cost to the purchaser, i. e* to the Pro- 
vince ; or, in other words, to reply to the opinions that " the 
Province generally derives very little advantage from the 
College, and that it might be dispensed with." 

I infer from the expression " the Province generaUy^^* that 
it is implied that the advantages of the College are chiefly con- 
'- fined to the immediate vicinity of Toronto ; and it is certainly 
the case that the greater part of the pupils has always been 
from this city and neighbourhood. The number of boys from 
the country, (and some from very distant parts) has generally 
been rather more than a third of the entire number ; and when 
it is considered how many circumstances, besides the expense, 
may concur to make it inconvenient to parents to send their 
sons far from home, this is perhaps nearly as large a propor-* 
tion as could be expected. But the benefits to the Province 
at large are not to be solely estimated by the comparative 
number of pupils who are sent to the College from districts 
more or less remote from its vicinity. The beneficial effects of 
talents which are drawn forth, ^and cultivated, by a systematic 
course of education, are not confined to the locality, either of 
the school, or of the hom#, of the talented individual ; the 
i talents thus matured, are the property and advantage, no less 
(_{]}^ tho ornament, of the country at large% No one thinks of 
enquiring whether a Bacon, or a Newton, a Johnson or an 
Addison, rieceiVed bis education in his native town, or at a 
distant school ; the whole nation enjoys the fruits of their 
talents, afod glories in their fame, wherever they were educated. 
It may indeed be a source of honest pride to particular schools 
to have educated such luminaries, as it may be to their native 
B 



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10 

place&i to have produced ihem, but (he dtttuietioh thus enjoyed 
by the onei or the other, does not in the lea&l duiiittieh tiie 

public advantagei and the public honour derived Trom tbeir 

abilities. 

But to meet more directly the qiitstioa of advft»lagea derlv^ 
by the Proviace geBeraUjfrotttbeiafttitulioii of Upper Canada 
College : we B^ust remember that k is too soon to juc^ of ihc 
frnit of a tree before the period of ita matority has arrived ; aird 
that it is equally ttiireaiOQable loetpect that a fd^ca of educa* 
tion for youth should have prodoced any demonstrable preunt 
influence on the community^ in the course of six years from 4ts 
foundation^ Even supposing popils who left the College aAeir 
but three years attendance from its commencemeqti to be fair 
specimens of a system which requires from six to eight years foe 
its completion, there has yet been no sufficient time for those 
young men to come forward, and £hew the effects of tbeir edu-^ 
cation in qualifying them for their several pursuits : and of cour9e« 
those who have left the College at later periods, and who are 
fairer representatives of its system^ in proportion as tbey con- 
tinued longer under its training, are still further from the. time 
when^their qualifications will be tejBted in the business of life, 

C Although, however, the College course of educatioa ca;i only^ 
be adequately judged of from those pupils who have thoroughly 
completed it, I would with coniSdence refer to from tw^n^ to 
thirty young men who liave left the College, at diJOferent inter- 
vals, within the last, three years, a|| those whose edueatioa wiU 
give them decided advantages ii^ their future professional pur- 
auits ; and many of whom, were the scene of their youthful atu^^ 
/ dies now to cease to exist, so th^t no succession of competkors, 
\ similarly trained, could follow them into the field, would, alwaysj^ 
\ maintain an elevated, and iinque;stipned supfriority. J 

Besides the puptts i have tbift^more pslHitukrly alllded to, 
there are also to be taken into account the numbers who have H>ft 
the College at various stages of advancement, short of comptee- 



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11 

« 

mg Ite course ; and who may be supposed to have profited by 
Aeir attandance in correspoDding degrees* 

ie then the Province in general really deriving no advantage 
firotn an loslittttioni which, at this early period of its Existence, 
Ims MfH fotth so many yoiing meti thus qualified, who can- 
Mt fiul to carry with thent, (he influence of mental cuhnre and 
NrSneiiiettt, into the various parts of the Province^ through w.btcii 
tbey will in a few y^ara be dtsper^^BLJ^ lAs the Institaiion con-\ 
"loiiiefl its operations, and with those miprovements which length- 
ened eaperience may be supposed constantly to suggest, it musi 
send forth increasing numbers of pupik, whose qoitlifications 
will be nu»re aad more nrioiM and complete. Nor can there 
be a doubt that these numbera would be yet further increased, 
and the canseqaent benefits be enhanced and perpetuated, if, on 
leaving the College;, y^tlag men had the opportunity of prose- 
cuting their* 8todtes« and of earning distinction by their attaia^ 
mentSt at a Provincial University. 

Instead, therefore, of admitting the position that^flie College 
might be dif^ensed whh, I would, with all deference, maintain 
that itf or some similar Institatioa, is indispensable, if it be desi- 
rable that Upper Canada, advancing as it h in erety other 
respect which gives importance, and su^ri^orlty fo a people, 
should not remain stationary as to literary, and intellectual 
improtement. ^^• 

It is, of coarse, impossible that an Institution, furnished with 
the means of supplying so sofid and complete an education as 
is contemplated in the above remarks, and as can alone effect 
any essential general improvement, should be escabfisfaed in 
every District — the expense being far too great, and the demand 
too Umiied, for such a provisimu The obvious alternative is 
the establtshmenl of one such Institution^ for the benefit, not of 
the particular District m whicb it nay be. placed, (and it must 
he placed in some District^) but of the whqU Province. Such, 
Ml Jbcl, were the consideraltons wliich led to the Ibundation of ^, 
Upper Canada College. It was observed that the general ^ 



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12 

lUmdaird of educaiioo lo be obtained at ihe DUlrici Schools did 
not, and from their nature and circumstances, could not, afford ! 
au adequate preparation for the higher departments of study 
which are appropriate to a .University. Hence appear^ the 
oeces^ity for a Seminary which, as a. Frovincial ImtiUUiani 
should bold an intermediate posittioa, and fill, up the eiist^og intef r; 
val, between the District ScbopU generally, and the University.) 
"M it be desired that the UniversHy should yield alt tfaie 
advantages to the Province, wbi<b such an Institution is calcu- 
lated to confer, it is absolutely necessary that the youth who 
') resort to that ultimate seat of teaming, should be duly qualiAsd, 
' by their previous. education, to tn^prove the ppportnnities to be 
there afforded them. For ttough it is iarfroto an unimportant 
incidental advantage of a University, that it will afford to young 
men, who have already entered upon the active engagements of 
life, opportunities of attending lectures on various branthes of 
literature and science ; this is not the primary object of su^h an 
Institution : tbat^ol^ecS is rather, by maturing and perfecting 
the attainments of young men, to give them higher qualifications 
and iroprpyed tastes, prevu>t»(y»to. their entering tl^e world ; and 
also to encourage a more careful attention to the earlier stages 
pf education, by offering a field in which superior talents, and 
attainments may gain public distinction and record. But nei- 
ther of these essential objecl%icafa be fully realiit^d by youths 
who have no choice, but to proceed to the University, with snch/ 
preparation as was attainable previous to the institution of Uppeif 
^. Canada College. • The. interval between the District Schools 
and the University, as I have already intimated, was too great 
to be passed over at single step. 

^ The correctness of this opinion Ims been practically illustrated 
in New Brunswick. In that Province a^Jnmcsity was put 
into operation about five years ago, without, at the same time, 
making any such addition to, or. alteration in, the previously 
ejListing means of education, as should afford the requisite pre- 
paration for those intending to avail themselves of the new 



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13 

loHkution : the cooteqiience wat, that youths were sent there at 
an age, add vricfa acquirmaents, alike unsaited to the studies and 
regulations of the the place ; and it was found that the stodents 
were too young to be left to their own guidance and controul, and 
yet, as members of a University, they could not be subjected to 
that discipline, and restraint, which their years required. From 
this instance, and from the nature of the case, it appears there- 
fore highly probable, that bad circumstances allowed of the 
University going into operation some.years sinee, the establish* 
queat of an Institution, similar to the College, would in a short 
time have followed, as a necessary aujuliary. 

' In order that the College may duly fulfil this object of sup- 
plying a connecting link between the District Schools, through- 
out the Province, and the University, it is of course essential 
that there should be such an uniformity of system pursued at 
those Schools and the College, as would make the former the 
proper preparatives for the latter; so that on the removal of a 
pupil from one place of education to the other, he might not 
find himself thrown back, and discouraged, by the difference of 
method, and the strangeness of every thing about him, but might 
feel that he was only transferred to a more advanced position 
in the same system. On the effects, however, which the want 
of such: a general uniformity in the public schools of the Pro- 
vince has had on the extended^ OiHity of the College, I purpose 
making a fow remarks in a subsequent page. 

Whilst, however, maintaining the necessity for a Seminary 

Capable of imparting a thorough liberal education, I am not ^ 

f insensible to those particular circumstances of the Province, 

- which render it desirable, that the course of instruction to be 

\ adopted a<fi|6liai.9i»iritAiry, should, as far as is compatible with 

v; the attainment of its primary object, be so arranged as to afford 

^' to pupils, not finally destined for the Unr^^ersity, or for learned 

^.^ professions, the means of acquiring, by proceeding through a 

certain portion of the system, such an education as would be 

suitable for every member of respectable society : and I feel that 



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an «rrangefiient of ibi$ kind, to the fulkat frttelkabk tfsleot, i» 
lilt more ppoper, because, th^sgli tlie s»iR d?gree of pfrbficioficy, 
io wmt brtncbes of study^ may not be rcqaisile for tbe future, 
mercbaoi or agricuUaratist, 99 for the mf mber of « liberal pr^ 
fiifsio», ihere aro no aeqoireipeotB' of gfiilersil loforoftatioo uae- 
fttl lor the fonROfy wbich are not ako advantagoous io tbe latter*. 

Wttb reference Co &ucb considerations b9 tbese} the course of 
education ot tbe College vrasi, from its ectabibbment^ orgamed r 
less decidedly so indeed at first, than subttqoenily ; for eonfimied^ 
modtfieations hove from time to tiane been rin*6e sog>getted, and 
introd'iced — all tending to increase ilie proportion of ntt^cella* 
neous studies, aiid- to retrench the time demoted to tbe Clasfies, ^ 
till, at present, this latter branch Occupies less than half of tbe / 
jim^ speni at tbe College by pupils of any standing^ aa will be 
perceived from the subjoined outline. 

^Before, however, requesting attemioii to thiii, detail, I would 
again repeat, what I intimated at the beginning, that I am desi-. 
rous of tuking this opportunity to correct those fake iropresstoos 
respecting the character of the education to be obtmned at tbe 
College, which I believe to be prevalent, 

I have reason to know that within fifty miles of TetontO, the' 
idea that an alnvost eielosive attentien was paid' to the %\uAy of 
the Classics, baa been so generally e»Certained, as to determany 
parents from seading their sonC4l» the InstkntlDiir 'A gentleman 
from the neiglibourboed to wbicb I allude, {and wbo^ I trtistt 
will pardon tlie allusion,) after being present during tlie {laMii- 
nation last Cliri&tmas, came to me, at the conclusion, to express 
bis surprise and gratification^ at fimling the system so widely 
different 'from what be hac) be^n led to expect* He had been 
^o impressed with tbe belief, generally entertained ia hisuifiglK 
bourbood, that nothing but Latin and Greek was taught at tbf- 
College, as to have fell much dptibt whether he should contiaue 
to send hiaown son, who bad been a College Boarder finr three, 
quarters of a year ; but bayiiig* fortunately^ thus had tbe oppov' 
tunity of seeing aod judging for bimsel^ be returned borne sat<^ 



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kficd inbri owa «iiii€i,ftiH) wilh the delermhiatioiYof^ndesviiur- 
ing C» dissbose the minds of bk tieig^hbours, oa (he Jtibject. If 
mtseoneepiiant o( this kind exist within so short n <K$tMiee of 
the Iiistitnticm, it catv scarcelj be supposed tiioi ibey are less 
prerftknS ferlher oSi Hotr they should ieOAtkrae in fate ^ 
the evidence to the contrary which might be afforded, f f soogbt, 
by those pupHs who cooie from the several neigbbourboodsi it 
is difficult to account for, except from the faict, tliaf where an 
opimbn has once been taken up, with^ perhaps, soioa degree of 
foundation io the first instance, an indisposition to make enquiry, 
and to part with received impressions, often keeps persoiu ia 
the persuasipn that a state of things which existed once, must 
still continue, aHbou^h, in (act, ttnUerial. changes have since 
taken place. 

That (here is such a tendency, through a sort of mental vU 
inetti^f to proceed in the direction of first impression^, and a 
disinclination to ^dmit a change of opinion, the history of (he 
College affords another exemplification, which t will take leave 
to mention. 

When^the CoTfege Boarding House was. first added to the 
Bstablisbment, several irregularities occurred, through the 
neglect of the Superintendent, before they were made known 
(a the CoBvge auihoriiies ; imciiediattly on sheir being dls<^o- 
ye«ed^ am edttro ohange io the aaperimeodeiHro took place : and- 
since that time, I may safely sfinir> that i»evevy respect, wiie- 
tber as regards the domestic comfort, orlhe mocal and scholastic 
superintendence of the Boarders, the Colleg;e Boarding House 
is surpassed by few .similar establishments on eitber .side the 
Atlantic. Such, I have reason to know, is tlie character it 
geMfnUjy enJAjifttbroiigkiUiePnivia€e;.andyet I am stthe aatue 
time aware> dtttin otne pantiedar neigUboiuhoed,. and that ttko,. 
froift wUch sevef al boys are sent le t6e College, uriiOae friends* 
as* o€HMSaait.]iitlieiBciit|uirtes respecting tfaem^ there ane nraoy 
persons who still persist in speaking of t&e BoodiBg Uoiiie as 
allowing great laxity in the conduct of its inmates. 



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. 1 have been the rather inclined to notice this illustration of 
the difficulty with which prejudices, once entertained, are dis- 
missed, in the hope that persons who do such injustice to the 
present conduct of this branch of the College, may be induced 
to make those enquiries which cannot fail to result in altered 
impressions. 

I now proceed to give an outline of the, studies at present 
pursued at Upper Canada College ; not without the hope that a 
consideration of it will procure a juster appreciation of the 
Institution, than prejudice, or misapprehension, has in many 
instances accorded. . 

COURSE OF EDUCATION. 

The Preparatory School, as its name imports, is merely 
for the preparation of those pupils who are not qualified to join 
the lowest College Form. One portion of the day is occupied 
in learning the Latin Accidence ; the second, in English Read- 
ing and Spelling ; and the third in Writing and Arithmetic. 
There is no fixed period for pupils remaining in this School ; 
they are i^oved into the junior College Form, as soon as 
they are sufficiently prepared. 

Ist CoiXEGC Form.— Latin Grammar, and Exercises ; Cor<^ 
derius ; English Reading and BpslHog ; Elementary Geography, ' 
viva voce; Writing and Arithmetic. 

2nd Form. — Latin Grammar ; Exempla Minora ; Lectiones 
Selectee; English Reading and Dictation; Geography; out- 
lines of English History ; Writing and Arithmetic; French. 

3rd FoRM.-^Latin Grammar; Etempla Minora; Phaedms, 
Cornelius' Nepos; Rudiments of Greek, (one hour a-week); 
English Reading and Dictation; English History; Geogra^ 
phy ; Writing ; Arithmetic ; Ffench ; Geometrical Drawingi at 
preparatory to Surveying. 



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4tli Form.— ^Latin Grammar ; Clarke's Eierciset ; Caesar ; 
Ovid; Greek Grammar ; Greek Eiercises; Greek Delectus; 
English or Roman History; English Exercises; Writing; 
Arithmetic ; French ; Geometrical Drawing ; Mathepn.atics, (by 
pupils sufficiently advanced.) 

5th Form.— Latin Grammar; Ellis's Exercises ; Sallu^ I 
Ovid; Greek Grammar; Greek Exercises; Greek Testament! 
Analectf Graeca Minora; Epglisb Composition; Roman, o;; 
Grecian History ; Writing ; Arithmetic ; French ; Geometrical 
Drawing; Mathematics. 

6th Form. — Latin Grammar ; Latin Ex^reisee ; Virgil ; 
Cicero's Orations ; Latin and English Composition ; Greek 
Grammar ; Greek Exercises f Greek Testament ; Homer ; 
General History; Writing; Arithmetic; French; Geometrical 
Drawing; Mathematics. 

7tb FoRM.«-*Valpy'^s Elegaotiae Latinae ; Cicero; Llvy ; 
Horace; L^tin and English Composition; Greek Grammars 
Gr^ek Exercises ; Greek Testanient; Greek Poet; Greek 
Prose ; Arithmetic ; French ; Geometrical Drawing ; History 
and Geography ; Mathematics ; Natural Pfailosoph}^ 

Partial Class. — English Composition; History; Geo- 
graphy; Writing; Arithmetic; Mathematics; French; Geo- 
metrical Drawing ; Bpok-keq|Jyi^ 

ZVMc.— The Partial Crats vat instituMd 4o meet the'viewt of thhte pupllt whog'e 
friends tte hot det iroiM that they fhould opmplete a Claseical edacatioo. Soeh 
nve allowed to diverge rrom the gea^ral course, and to enter the Partial Claie 
after being at College two yeart, or after hi^ving passed through the third Form^^ 
Pupils also who at the time of their admission are too old Co render it advisable 
for them to 6^gin the stiidjr of £atin, afe allowed (o enter (be Fartia) Class. 

ik^ o^.^Thmagbonl tl« wMa Celle^ge, everf Form, (wHb the Exception 
oaljr of those bojs wbote friends object to that particular lesson) has a Scripture 
lesson on Monday and Friday, consisting of recitation and reading, on the former 
day, and of reading, on the latter : both lessons being accompanied with such 
f^vIfiMtioM by tbe Maiteri M ve cidc»l«led to illustrate the lubjecf, wkhdat 
iatf rfitring wiib niiy peevliar religious tenets. 

C 



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A Book Keepinq Class — Composed of tofficiently lyialif- 
fied papils of various staodings ia the College, alleiids the 
Writing Master three times a wed. 

In addition to the above, which compose the routine studies 
of the College, a Drawing Master attends from 12 to 2 on 
Wednesdays and Saturdays, (which are half holidays) to give 
lessons to those pnpils who wish to learn landscape and figure 
Drawing. For this, as being an extra branch, there is an ad- 
ditional charge. 

THE COLLEGE BOARDING HOUSE- 

This establishment was add«d to the Institution, at ti later 
period, with the design of rendering the advantages of the Col- 
lege accessible to many boys living at a distance, whose parents, 
though desirous of sending their sons, could not conveniently 
bear the eipense of placing them as Boarders with the Masters. 
Here pupils receive their board and education for the sum of 
JCSO, Currency, per annum. A Matron is engaged to take 
charge of the domestic affairs of the establishment, and the 
junior Master resides in the House for the purpose of superin- 
tending the conduct' of the Boarders.^ 

It will at once be seen that the education above described 
is very far from being mer^^assical : that U comprises, in 
fact, besides the Classics, progressive instruction ia-^WrUing; 
Arithmetic ; Bodk-Tcufing ; Cteography ; History ; EnglUh 
Composition \ French; Mathematics; the FrindpUs of Lani 
Surveying I md Elements of Natural FhUosophy^ 

To this course, as a whokr 1 would confidently appeal, and 
ask whether the youth, who has been done justice to l^ himself 
and his teachers, m going through it, can be said not to have 

[The terms of Tuition for Day Scbolftrt mn £2 ptr quarter, for' Pupilt in 
the College; and £1 6g. per <|ttarter for those in the Prepuratory Selioel ; with 
an additional 6i. per quarter, in eaeh €&«e> for the eoilthifent expenset of penf 
and ink, fuel, be.] • > 



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receired A ttuff/iir education ; ftomeihiog more tbiin a barren 
acqnaiBtaDce with a few Latin and Greek books. Bat it is ^ 
as a whole that it can alone be fairlj and adequately judged of. 
For tfaoogb in accordance with the principles already adverted 
to, it will be observed that a pupil who has gone regularly 
through the three lower Forms, will have acquired the substan- 
tials of a plain and practical education ; to which he will make 
further additions as he ascends higher in the system — (and in 
still greater proportion if he should be removed from the third, 
or any higher Form, into the Partial Class, where Classical 
studies are altogether omitted) — though, there are the means 
of a boy's acquiring the fundamentals of an English edu- 
cation, by attending on but ^a small portion of the system ; 
yet it is obvious that no fair estimate of any systematic course 
of education, in its completeness, can be formed from these 
detached fragments of it. 

In framing a system of education for a public Seminary, 
reference must, of course, be had to the case of pupils who are 
supposed to begin at the foundation, and pass regularly through 
tbe several stages, till they arrive at its completion. Accord- 
ingly, a certahi range of subjects being proposed as those which 
are to be embraced in the entire course, these are adjusted and 
disposed of in such order and combination as appear best cal- 
culated to lead the pupil througk tnccessive degrees of advance- 
ment till he is conducted to the completion. If, therefore, a 
boy knowing little or nothing is brought to such a Seminary, 
and withdrawn after a time only sufficient to carry him through 
a sixth of the course, is it reasonable to charge the Seminary 
with not teaching the other five-sixths i 

It is manifest that every thing cannot be learned ai oftcct nor 
any single subject, without theconsumption of a certain portion 
of time ; the acquisition, therefore, of several branches of know- 
ledge must necessarily ^occupy, a proportionably lengthened 
period, and it ii as unjust ai it is unreasonable, to condenin any 



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Bchemd of cducalion as de&ctive on A view of the alUliUMnu 
of a'pupil who has passed through bdt • eioall part of k, parti* 
cularly if that p^rt be at the cooftmenceiiieflt, and, Ibereforet 
chiefly elementary. If the pupil began at the begioniii|^, all 
that can be required is, that he should be thoroughly instructed 
as far as he has adyancad, and that his advabcement should be 
proportionate to the time he has been taught : if he was 
remo-yed from another School, arid placed at some intermediate 
position of the College, the latter cannot be responsible for the 
degree of accuracy and soundness with which the ground>work 
of his previous education may have been laid; aud should thia 
have been imperfect, the difficulty of repairing the defect, by 
any subsequent pains, is greater than can be imagined without 
experience^ 

/ I believe every body assents to the practical good sense of 
the Dutch Minister of State, who said he got through so many 
things^ by dbiiig only one at a time : and yet I have often had 
occasion to think that many parents do not consider Ibis maxim 
applicable to the business of education ; for I am sensible that 
an adherence to the principle of not attempting ta teach a 
greater variety of subjects at one time, than could be taught 
thoroughly, nor more advanced subjects than were suitable to 
ihe existing attainments of the pupil^ has injured thq College m 
ihe estimaijoa of not a few, wlio were impatient to see a more/ 
*rapid and ostensible progress^ than the age or atia^nmeats/rf' 
tbair children rendered practicable. / 

This remark applies more particularly to some who, being 
themselves unacquainted with the Classical languages, are inca- 
pabte of estimating the progress which their children really do 
make in the rudiiheitls ^f Latin, and are tiso flol awarf of 
the time' which is unavotdably^ex|)eiided/ at first Ja acquiring 
These elements, but with which a thorough' familiarity* ia indis- 
pensable io ihe attaiumfeat of- any proficiency in the Classics 
which shall be of future avail; for to nothing,' perhaps; is the 



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mmmim dMt " if f| be worth wbilt to. do a chins ^^ ^H, i| 19 worth 
wbftle to do it well" moi? applicable than to telensentary. Cla^ 
eicBl etndiei* wbijch, if they be euperBciaHy langbc, all Mature 
laboiir is Uttle belter ibao tbrowa away* . 

And whatever diversity of opinion may exist as to the value 

of Claseical knowledge and taste» when obtained^ there can be 

n^oe as to (he useless waste of tima caused by the proces0| 

wbichi after three or four years of Classical instrdction, leaves 

a boy so little acquainted with grammatical principles, that be 

panooti without assistance, account for the construction of a 

sinple sentence, nor undersland an ordinary passage, in a 

Latin author. Yet this mu$t be the case, if, for the sake of a 

seemingly rapid proficiency, the necessary time and pains be 

not taken far securing the ground-work. A child, or a native 

of the woods, on seeing the foundations of a house sunk in the 

earth, might Ihink it very unne<;essary to lay so much material^ 

with sttch great nicety, whero it would never after afterwards be 

seen ; but little architectural ei^perience is requisite to teach us 

what would be the consequence of beginning' to build on the 

stf^a€« of the ground. 



/ . Moreover, though the progress of the pupil to an unpractised 
/ observer, may for a time be scarcely perceptible, the mind is, 
nevertheless, acquiring materials and strength for future efibrts 
and success, as certainly as the absorption of sap is daily adding 
to the vigour and growth of the young tree, though the increase 
in its size may not be apparent to the eye for months or years. 
And I might add, that the sounder and more serviceable the tree 
in its maturity, the slower and more gradual is its early growth. 

It will not be supposed jibat I ani advocating an exclusively 
Classical edocaiion if I here venture to express a convictioni 
(ibe result of personal observation,) that those are mucii mis- 
uken who consider that the mind of a boy, whilst occupied with 
Latin Grammar, nnd %f$ application^ is stagnant, and it| powers 



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nnezeroeiied ; the Taalt must be ^ery much in the teacher if the 
pnpil's jadgment and reflectioii be not coDstamly called into 
action, at a very early stage, where a reotofi is to be given for 
the constructioo of eveiy word in a sentence ; and general prin- 
ciples are to be applied to panicolar cases, at every step. 

The extension of the advantages of the Coli^e has bee» 
limited by another circamstanoa io which I have already ad-* 
verted, namely, the absence of any general uniformity in the 
systems pursued in the District Schools throughout the Pro- 
vince, and at the College. Scarcely any two District Schools* 
I believe, at present, either useihe same books, or parsue tiie 
same mode of instruction: the <yHM«quence is, that if, from any 
circumstance, a boy is moved frci» one School to another, his 
progress receives a serious check from the change to which he 
is subjected. The books which are put into his hand at the new 
School, are probably diffisrent from those he has been used to ; 
the method of teaching difierent ; so that even though the 
School to which he is removed should be in every respect supe- 
rior to that which he has left, he cannot fail to labour under, at 
least temporary, disadvantages. Hence the pupil becomes dis- 
heartened, and his friends annoyed, because he does not occupy 
just the same position in the one School that he did in the other. 

At a Seminary like 4ha CdMge, receiving Scholars from 
many other quarters, of course these inconveniences are exhibi- 
ted under as many varieties as there are various modes of in- 
struction at other Schools. And in addition to the practical 
embarrassment thus caused to the College, with the discourage- 
ment of the new pupils, and the disappointment of their friends ; 
it is not to be wondered at, if the feelings of the former Teachers 
are unfavorably affected at the idea of their pupils appearing 
to disadvantage (though perhaps without fault attributable to 
either place of education) at an Institution whose more public 
and prominent position naturally makes any thing like an indi- 



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cation of opinion mort regarded, than in the case of conipa- 
ralively private Schools. 

All these inconveniences, which arise from the present re- 
lation, or rather want of rehtion^ of the District Schools to 
each other and to the College, would be in a great measure 
ren^ved hyjhe adoption, under authority, of one uniform 
system oTedncation at all those Seminaries which may be called 
public. This uniformitjf' might, by marking out some fixed 
general outlines, and by enforcing the use of the same funda- 
mental School Books, especially Grammars, be carried suffi- 
ciently far to obviate the disadvantages above referred to, with- 
out unnecessarily interfering wMi the exercise of each Master^s 
judgment, and the practice of^Bts own peculiar method of teach- 
ing, in details. _ / 



A well organized arrangemei|t of tMs kind, by which the 
District Schools should, as far as they go, correspond with, 
and be introductory to, the College, as the College would 
be introductory to the University, could not fail of producing 
those essential and permanent advantages which ever attend 
systematic and uniform operations, above desultory and uncon* 
nected efibrts ; whilst the present state and circumstances of the 
Province, with respect to education, seem to render the execu- 
tion of such a derign as prac^iBiUeii as it would be beneficial. 

Vpper Canada College^ 
May, 1836. 



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