Albion Parent-Teacher Association
By Mrs. T.L. Callahan
Albion may well be proud of her Parent-Teacher associations and of the work they have, and are accomplishing at the present time. The national organization was found in 1897 in Washington, D.C., and in 1918, the Michigan Branch was organized in Battle Creek.
In 1919 educators in Albion caught the vision: a recognition of the fact that every individual, whether father, mother or teacher, is a factor in child welfare and the cooperation of all three in necessary to secure for every child the highest advantage in physical, mental, moral and spiritual education.
On March 12, 1919, the first P.T.A. was organized in Albion at the Dalrymple school. Mrs. M.H. Fall was one of the pioneers in the work of this school and to her should go much credit in laying the firm foundation of this active organization of today. One week later on March 19, an association was organized at the Austin school, and on March 21, one at the Central-East Ward.
L.W. Fast was superintendent when these three associations were organized in the spring of 1919, and the following fall, Superintendent Don Harrington came to Albion and he has always been an inspiration and a promoter of the P.T.A. movement.
During the first year of these organizations the need of a school nurse was discussed, the matter was taken later with the school board, and the next year Albion had her first public school nurse, Miss Inez Rice. Another worthy project, the gymnasium, had its inception in the P.T.A.
At a meeting of the Central-East Ward, November 11, 1921, the name of that association was changed to the Junior-Senior High, Mrs. E.R. Sleight being the first president of this P.T.A. under its new name.
On December 9, 1921, the Central-East Ward again organized with Mrs. T.M. Birdsall as president. This association was later named the Central P.T.A. and is now known as the Gardner Grades.
Believing that the combined efforts of the several Parent-Teacher associations of Albion could accomplish that which no one group could do alone, the P.T.A. Council was organized in 1923.
One of the largest projects sponsored by the Council is the annual pre-school clinic to which every child who will enter school the following fall, for the first time, is invited. The examinations are conducted by the school doctor and dentist assisted by the school nurse. This executive body serves as a clearing house for all parent-teacher problems.
The officers of the various groups for the year 1931-1932 and their past president are as follows:
Dalrymple P.T.A.: Mrs. Perry Van Nuys, president; George Schumacher, first vice president; Miss Mary Lane, second vice president; Mrs. Oscar Tessmer, secretary; Mrs. Adolph Zick, treasurer. Past presidents: Mrs. T.L. Callahan, Mrs. Harry Angevine, Mrs. C.E. Marsh, Mrs. A.D. Sharp, Mrs. Delbert Barnes.
Central East Ward (later known as Junior-Senior High): Mrs. Inez Tyler, acting president and vice president; S.B. Chapel, secretary; Mrs. A.M. Chickering, treasurer. Past presidents: Prof. A.M. Chickering, Dr. A.J. Abbott, Mrs. E.R. Sleight, Mrs. Minard E. Farley, Mrs. Frank Sebastian, Leon Hard, C.A. Ross, K.G. Cornell
Central East Ward (now known as Gardner Grades): Mrs. T.M. Carter, president; Mrs. Robert Garfield, vice president; Mrs. Kate Chappell, secretary; Mrs. Clarence Burg, treasurer. Past presidents: Mrs. T.M. Birdsall, Mrs. Ira Decker, Mrs. Garfield Farley, Mrs. C.E. Messacar, Mrs. D.L. Randall, Mrs. R.G. Hall.
P.T.A. Council: C.A. Ross, president; Mrs. Minard Farley, vice president; Mrs. Olga Hicks, secretary and treasurer. Past presidents: A.F. Cooper, Mrs. Donald Ramsdell, A.L. Young, Mrs. William Robinson, William Robinson
Source: Krenerick, Miriam. Albion’s Milestones and Memories. Albion, MI: Art Craft Press. 1932. 157-158