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GUILD OF GRADUATES.I --

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GUILD OF GRADUATES. I Some Vital Topics. ELSEWHERE will be found a report of the seventh annual Guild of Graduates held last Thursday at the University College of Wales, Aberystwyth, at which two papers of surpassing interest were read on two points of vital importance to Welsh life and pro- gress. "Bilingual Teaching in the Belgian Schools" was the subject of Mr DAWE'S discourse, while Professor T. M. REES, of Brecon, spoke on the social obligations of the University of Wales to the people. It is a matter of great regret that the attend- ance at the annual meetings of the G uild is so thin and meagre,, and that so few of the Welsh graduates take genuine interest in the educational work of the University. It was with some difficulty that a quorum was formed in the morning so as to enable the business of the meeting to be proceeded with, and one forced to the conclusion that the elections of the University Court representatives must be carried on at these annual meetings in order to secure a I respectable attendance of the members, instead of the present method by poll of all the members of the Guild. Great things O were expected of the Guild of Graduates at its inception, but no institution has so thoroughly belied the promise of its youth as the Gaiid of Welsh Graduates, who, nevertheless, go on talking about their enthusiasm and ardour and love and affection for Wales and its education. Those, however, who attended the last meeting of the Guild were amply repaid by a thorough enjoyment of two admirable papers, as lucidly written as they were pleasantly read. Mr DAWES showed how I the Belgian children were taught in two different languages, and how each language brightened and sharpened the intelligence of the child to cope with the difficulties of the other language. As he described the children being taught in Flemish and French one could not help thinking about instruction in schools in Wales where Welsh and English are being utilised to the full. Again in his retrospect of the, past history of Belgium, Mr DAWES was almost repeat- ing the history of .Wales, for the difficulties in y which the Flemish people had to contend against were exactly the same as those which stood in the way of Welsh being used in schools for pur- poses of instruction. And it is to be greatly hoped that the surprising re- sults which followed the great Flemish nafional movement in Belgium in 1830 will also be achieved in Wales, and that Welsh children will be found equally conversant in both languages, just as Belgian children were found by Mr. DAWES to be conversant in three languages at the ages of thirteen and fourteen. The bi-lingual problem, instead of being a real difficulty, in Belgium has proved an im- mense boon to intellectual and national ad- vance, for the wonderful commercial and industrial success of the Belgians is to be traced directly to its national system of education. The history of Belgium should certainly encourage Welsh reformers to in- sist on bi-lingual teaching in our elementary schools, and to strike the Philistines hip and thigh who preach the utility of the death of the Welsh language and of Welsh national characteristics. The second paper—on the social aspect of the Welsh University education-was also full of suggestions remarkable for their broadness of sympathy and clearness of con- ception and of the obligations of the Uni- versity to the Welsh people. Education in Wales has sprung from the people-it was the voice of the peasant from below, and not the demands of the upper classes or Gov- ernment from above, that gave Wales its higher educational institutions. Just then as the University was born of the people, so it should in its turn administer directly to the people. It should be the means of in- struction of the peasant's son and daughter, whom it should send back to the people equipped with ideas which would ennoble and uplift the life of the people in Wrlles, In this way, by drawing its students from the people, and sending them back to live among the people, tne University will soon be able to be the great" unifying power in Wales, for the leaders of the people in all the art. in teaching, in industry, in medicine, in the pulpit—will Le all drawn from the same in- stitution and from the s.1.me. ce.n.tvo of learning and inspiration.

THE SHAME OF EUROPE. --

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