Polytechnic High School




The Great Earthquake of 1906 struck on 18 April at 5:12 am.

Reconstruction followed.


Board of Supervisors Urged to Set Aside the Sum of $15,000

Professor W.F. Bush, principal of the Polytechnic High School, is endeavoring to secure an appropriation of $15,000 from the $375,000 available from the bond issue for the purpose of equipping the school. He consulted with Supervisor Gallagher, chairman of the finance committee, but was informed that the matter could not be taken up at the meeting of the board yesterday afternoon.

The Polytechnic School has secured the use of rooms in the Affiliated Colleges buildings for academic studies and the intention is to use a block of land that is available in the immediate vicinity for the erection of a blacksmith shop and other buildings necessary to house the mechanical departments. The $15,000 is needed for this work, and as it is planned to open the school August 23, the Board of Education is in a hurry to proceed.

“The money that we ask,” stated Professor Bush, “is just 4 per cent of the total amount that is available from the bond issue for the erection and equipment of new school buildings. Most of the money is necessary for equipment. We have so made our plans that the equipment which we ask will be available for permanent quarters, when they are secured."

The Board of Education recently passed a resolution asking the Supervisors to set aside such a sum of money, and Mayor Schmitz states that he is entirely agreeable to such arrangements.

“Most of our graduates and many of the senior classmen are now working and our haste in this matter is to prepare other students so that they can commence to look for positions. This is the most practical education that can be secured and at the present time it is inline with the needs of the city.




Superintendent Roncovieri and the other officials of the School Department are anxious that the Supervisors should take immediate action on the application of the School Board, filed two weeks ago, for authority to use $15,000 of available school bond money for the purchase of equipment for the Polytechnic High School.

This institution which has between 400 and 500 pupils lost all of its apparatus in the fire. Unless something is done to replace this before the end of the month the school cannot reopen when the others do.

“Our equipment, upon which all our instruction is based,” said Principal Bush yesterday, “is the foundation of everything we do in the school.”

There is $375,000 of school bond issue money available for the Polytechnic High School, the great portion to be devoted to the construction of a new building on a lot near the Affiliated Colleges. In the latter institution room has been made, with the consent of the University Regents, for housing the Polytechnic School pending the completion of its own building.



Supervisors Should Provide Funds for Polytechnic High, By Walter N. Bush

The School Board at its meeting of June 28, in view of the fact that the Polytechnic High School, corner of Bush and Stockton streets, was entirely destroyed by fire, requested the Board of Supervisors to set aside $15,000 out of the school construction account of the public building fund for the purchase of the equipment of this school.

About a year ago, the city purchased a lot for the new Polytechnic High School in the vicinity of the Affiliated Colleges. It is the intention of the School Board, in case the Board of Supervisors appropriates the $15,000 for equipment, to erect on the school lot a temporary structure in which said equipment may be installed. It consists of carpenter tools, wood turning lathes, engine lathes, blacksmith forges, drawing tables, sewing and dressmaking outfits, and will be transferred to the new buildings when finished.

In view of the fact that this equipment is a permanent investment; that it affords boys and girls a training in artisanship that will render them efficient workers in the task of rebuilding the city; that while we have three literary or culture high schools, the Polytechnic is the only high school that fits its students for industrial life, and that without this equipment not only a large number of those attending the school but of those planning to take up vocational training will be seriously crippled in their preparation for their life work, the supervisors should take immediate and affirmative action upon the request of the Board of Education.

Industrial training as a part of our public school system has long passed the experimental stage. If it increases the efficiency of the boy and the girl in normal times, how much more valuable does it become when they are surrounded by the opportunities of today? It behooves the city fathers to do all in their power to foster and promote that line of training that will help boys and girls to help themselves.



School Department Asks the Supervisors for Money for Equipment

The following communication has been addressed to the finance committee of the Board of Supervisors: “Finance Committee, Board of Supervisors: On June 28th the Board of Education adopted the following resolution:

“Resolved, That the sum of $15,000 be and the same is hereby set aside out of school construction account of the public building fund for the purpose of enabling the equipment of the Polytechnic High School authorized to be constructed under the bond issue for public improvements."

“It was immediately presented to the Board of Supervisors, where it was referred to your committee on finance."

“Our schools are scheduled to open July 23d. the board of Education has received permission from the deans of the various colleges interested to use classrooms in the Affiliated Colleges for the classes of the Polytechnic High School in mathematics, English, science and other academic branches, and yet, unless the school is supplied with equipment for its shops and drawing-rooms, it must cease to exist. The Board of Education makes an earnest appeal to you for an appropriation only large enough to tide the school over its period of weakness. If the school is abolished even temporarily, its organization is dissolved and the valuable experience of many of its competent teachers will be lost to our department."

“At the time of the fire, over 350 pupils were in attendance at this school At least 200 of these will return if we can afford them to proper facilities. Its industrial line of training has long since passed the experimental stage. All the cities of the country boasting a population of 100,000 or over have from one to four completely equipped manual training high schools. If in normal times industrial training has demonstrated its value both to the pupils and the city, how much is that value enhanced by the greater opportunities that surround the boys and girls of San Francisco to-day! If the school is closed these boys and girls will be educationally crippled for life in their preparation for their chosen vocations. I have given the preparation of the list of articles to be purchased under this appropriation my personal supervision. It has been pruned as closely as intelligent and competent instruction in shop and drawing-room practice will permit."

“As soon as municipal funds will warrant, the Board of Education, with the assistance of your honorable body, will proceed to build the school to proportions worthy of our new city. Trusting that you will give the resolution of the Board of Education your immediate and favorable attention, I remain,
Alfred Roncovieri, Superintendent of Common Schools.”




Board of Education Details Teachers to Report at Five Buildings


Assignment of teachers in the five high schools of San Francisco was made by the Board of Education at a meeting yesterday afternoon. Those who are appointed to the various positions are expected to report for duty Monday morning. In addition to naming the instructors for the high schools the board assigned the janitors to the various buildings.

It was decided to make no appointments of teachers for the evening schools and the department of domestic science. According to a resolution that was adopted yesterday by unanimous consent these schools will reopen August 20, and when teachers and attaches are required they will be appointed in the chronological order of their standing in the department.

“Owing to the rush of work,” said Superintendent Roncovieri, “some mistakes have occurred. In case of any apparent error we ask those interested to notify us at once in order that the mistake may be rectified without delay.”

Following are the assignments made yesterday:
Polytechnic High School: Walter N. Bush, principal; A.L. Jordan, vice principal and head of science; Dr. I.C. Hatch, head of modern language and Latin; J.B. Clarke, head of mathematics; P.J. Mohr, assistant in mathematics and science; Miss Anna G. Duffy, head of English and history; Ross J. Brower, supervisor of shops and mechanical drawing; E. S. Carniglia, instructor in machine practice and forging; F.K. Barthel, manual training; Mme. E.C. Giffard, French; Miss M. Van Vleck, head industrial art and free hand drawing; Miss R. Murdoch, assistant in industrial art and free hand drawing; Miss Nellie Beale, assistant in industrial art and sewing; F.A. Gardner, on leave of absence.



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