High School Education by Sex in the Nineties: The 1890s
More education for women? Providing secondary education for anyone, male or female, strained the resources of local school systems. If there were to be postsecondary education, the state governments or religious institutions would have to bear the cost. The pattern of state investment in post-
normal schools, special teacher-training schools usually attached to elementary schools. Started in the 1830s, state normal schools expanded until, by 1918, there were over two hundred publicly supported teacher-training schools, their student bodies averaging 85 percent women. In the twentieth century, the normal schools disappeared. Many evolved into state colleges and state universities. In nearly every state, at least one of the branches of the state university system began as a normal school and thus was the first institution in the state to welcome women to higher education.