Horace Mann’s and public education

Freshman (College 1st year) ・Education ・APA ・3 Sources

The Reforms of Horace Mann

The reforms made through Horace Mann in the education system significantly influenced the improvement of education system in America. Horace Mann is one of the successful reformers of the schooling sector in the USA who spearheaded the Common School Movement that helped establish a structure for a tax-funded, college system. Consequently, the article will attempt to address the significant achievements of Mann in the direction of building a framework that motivated the institution of pleasant education besides, his major cogitative perspectives. The contributions of Mann had a great affect on the education system among the bad American families. He received his education in a one-room house that was once often under repair.

Inadequate Management in Public Schools

One major trouble that considerably affected the quality of education in the 18th and 19th century was inadequate management that most of public schools faced. Mann was a social reformer who played a key role in the promotion of sobriety movement, focused on the prohibition of the alcohol use in making beverages in the US. Scholars have estimated that both Mann’s professional as well as personal backgrounds played a significant role in building the new movement geared towards a quality education system in the US. In 1837 Massachusetts state board of education was establishable by the government headed by Mann as the board secretary. Mann’s responsibility was to oversee the establishment of the progressive public education reform also termed as the Common School Movement under the umbrella of this board.

The Common School Movement

Through the board, Mann pushed for the transformation of public schools by lobbying for a well-developed education scheme, public funded education as well as secular public school arrangements. The reason behind establishing the movement was to mitigate class conflict, inculcate healthy habits among the school-goers, avoid anarchy as well as enhancing the civic involvement of all the education stakeholders.

Religion in Public Schools

As a Unitarian, Mann supported the inclusion of the Bible in the curriculum of all public schools. With this ideology of Unitarian children were exposed to the teaching of the Christian religion at the school level to cultivate good moral among the young generation. Additionally, Mann wrote various books and articles about “The Common School Movement” that helped spread the ideas of conventional public schools that will allow students to have quality education with moral teachings. A section of historians has perceived his efforts to have significantly impacted on the creation of universal education system to the American citizens. However, others consider the common school as a rather basic tool that served to disguise the intellectual searching and to suppress the multifariousness of education.

Challenges and Controversies

Scholars have established that the movement was a source of controversy in the education system of the US. As a result, Howe was influential in addressing the contention posed by the campaign. For instance, his role as the first advocate of oral education had drastic and adverse consequences to the American deaf students. Mann supported education for only those who were able to speak; he believed intellect needed the spoken language. Therefore, the movement favored quality education to those individuals who were able to communicate in a classroom setting. Consequently, the learning goals and objectives of the deaf were undermined by the Common School Movement.


In a nutshell, Mann made some significant contributions in the education sector. Mann’s Common School Movement was aimed at improving the quality of teaching in all the public schools in America. However, the movement raised concern among most educationist who felt the move undermined the minor group in the community such as the deaf, as it favored the use of spoken language.


Fischel, William A. "Reassessing the State and Local Government Toolkit: Neither 'Creatures of the State' nor 'Accidents of Geography': The Creation of American Public School Districts in the Twentieth Century." University of Chicago Law Review 77, (January 1, 2010): 177. LexisNexis Academic: Law Reviews.

Fischel, William A. "Understanding Education in the United States: Do Amish One-Room Schools Make the Grade? The Dubious Data of Wisconsin v Yoder." University of Chicago Law Review 79, (January 1, 2012): 107. LexisNexis Academic: Law Reviews.

Steudeman, Michael J. “Horace Mann, “The Necessity of Education in a Republican Government”” (Fall 1839). University of Maryland, (October 2014): 1-22. Retrieved from: http://voicesofdemocracy.umd.edu/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/Mann-Interpretive-Essay.pdf

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