Faith-Related Aspects Of Teacher Education In Kazan Over The XIX-XX Centuries

Abstract

The present study presents the results of the examination of the main factors that defined the development of public education in the mid-19th century, in general, and teacher training, in particular in the Kazan County. One of the most important roles in the process of education development was played by religious organizations (Orthodox Christian and Muslim). Most theological academies and seminaries were pedagogical in their nature; some of the graduates decided to become teachers and work in secular educational institutions. The educational reforms taken over the period of 1864-67 concerned religious educational institutions and the quality of education in them was comparable with the quality in non-religious institutions. Based on the extensive studies and archival arrangement of the published and archive materials on the history of teacher education in the Kazan County the author identified the main trends in the development of teacher education in the period including the faith-related component.

Keywords: Pedagogyteacher educationconfessioneducation policy

Introduction

The present study presents the results of the examination of the main factors that defined the development of public education in the mid-19th century, in general, and teacher training, in particular in the Kazan County. One of the most important roles in the process of education development was played by religious organizations (Orthodox Christian and Muslim). Most theological academies and seminaries were pedagogical in their nature; some of the graduates decided to become teachers and work in secular educational institutions. The educational reforms taken over the period of 1864-67 concerned religious educational institutions and the quality of education in them was comparable with the quality in non-religious institutions.

Problem Statement

Founded in the 1870-80s, Kazan Tatar Teacher School and Kazan Teachers' Seminary became the implementers of the governmental educational policies. However, it is important to note that the pedagogical training during that period was also interconnected with the missionary work among non-Orthodox population of the Russian Empire.

Research Questions

The study considers teacher-training institutions and their role in the formation of the confessional identity in the regions with non-Russian population. An important question that the study poses is to what extent these educational institutions became agents of government policy. The focus is on the teachers' seminaries created in accordance with the pedagogical concept of Ilminsky (2012), along with Kazan Tatar Teacher School, and the role of these institutions in the formation of the teaching workforce in the Kazan County.

Purpose of the Study

The objective is to study the important aspect of pedagogical education, the activities of those educational institutions, the conceptual basis of which lay in the Orthodox ideology; to analyze the way the Ilminsky model was applied in the Turkestan region.

Research Methods

Research was undertaken using the following historical methods: genetic, comparative, typological, and the method of studying pedagogical experience (National Archive of the Republic of Tatarstan, a, b).

Findings

In 1870s Ilminsky and his associates founded non-governmental educational institutions which became the core of Ilminsky’s missionary and educational system: the Central Christian-Tatar school, the Kazan Teacher Divinity School, and a number of primary schools working in accordance with Ilminsky principles, namely the schools of St. Guriy Fraternity. There were modifications in the Orthodox mission that suggested conscious acceptance of the Orthodox faith: translations of the Holy Scripture, prayers, didactic literature in the languages of non-Russian peoples, liturgies in the native language, moderate criticism of Islam and pagan beliefs.

Missionary work made Ilminsky realise that primary school pupils from the very beginning should be taught in their native language. Precisely due to his attentive and thoughtful approach to one’s native language, which he knew functions as a transmitter of one’s national self-awareness, as well as taking a psychological approach in dealing with representatives of an ethnic group, that Ilminsky's work was truly effective and successful, leaving a noticeable trace in the ethnic history of the peoples of the Volga region. In essence, the main aspects of the system come down to the following major aspects:

Ilminsky’s main goal as a missionary was to promote Orthodoxy among non-Russian peoples (in a profound rather than superficial way). Ilminsky did not view assimilation as his goal (although, in his official speeches and letters he talked about "the merge of non-Russians with Russians") and he considered "Russification" per se (without Christianization) to be quite harmful.

The main instrument of Christianization for Ilminsky was a non-Russian school, an educational institution created especially for children of non-Russian parents, with a specially designed curriculum, with instruction in an appropriate native language but with Russian being taught as one of the subjects.

Today it is obvious that primary school pupils can only be taught in their native language, an approach based neither on ideological, nor high pedagogical principles, but driven by basic common sense: one cannot teach children in a language that they do not understand.

The pedagogical model, created in Kazan, proved to be effective and later became the basis for educational policies in the field of teacher training. Ilminsky was close to the government circles, and his influence on Pobedonostsev was well-known.

It was at the initiative of the Ministry of Public Education, the "Rules of Organizing Education of non-Russian People" were adopted. This helped place missionary educational system in the status of the government program, which presupposed opening new teachers' seminaries. Teachers who obtained training at teacher seminaries were meant to contribute to the Christianization of the non-Russian population and combine their teaching practice with missionary service.

Kazan and Chuvash Teacher Schools were the first to open. By 1917 there were 64 teachers' seminaries in Russia – they became the most widespread type of teacher training institutions. Several teachers' seminaries received a special status due to the fact that they were opened in regions with small Russian populations – Kazan, Transcaucasia, Kutaisi, Yerevan, Turkestan, Estland, Courland and Warsaw regions.

The analysis of the work performed by the teachers' seminaries, modeled on the Kazan Teacher Seminary, was effective, as it was an educational institution with a clear Orthodox orientation, conducting its activities in the Muslim region.

Turkestan Teacher's Seminary was established in 1879 in Tashkent. Over the years of its existence (1879-1917), the seminary had 415 graduates. There were: 384 Russians (83.9%), 54 Kazakhs (13%), 9 Uzbeks (2.2%), 3 Tatars (0.7 %), 1 Turkmen (0.2%) (Bendrikov, 1960).

Teacher's seminaries founded in the regions with small Muslim population, handled a task of no small importance: opposing the spread of Islam and the development of Muslim educational institutions. Ilminsky was not an open opponent of Islam; at the same time his activities persistently contributed to the spread of Orthodoxy among the non-Russian population of Russia.

Curriculum at the Turkestan Teachers' Seminary, in addition to the general Imperial seminary plan, was enriched by the study of local languages. The head officers of the seminary paid considerable attention to the fact that their graduates could speak the native language of their students who belonged to indigenous populations. The seminary followed the Ilminsky model according to which teaching children had to be conducted in their native tongue (National Archive, 4).

In order to demonstrate the resistance to the development of Muslim confessional schools a network of Christian institutions were established that were subordinate to the Ministry of Public Instruction, namely Russian-Tatar vocational schools. They were created for Tatar children, and gave mandatory Russian language lessons and other subjects were also taught in Russian. By 1917, in total there were 41 such vocational schools in Kazan County. Founded in 1872, Kazan Tatar Teacher School served the purpose of preparing teachers for work in those institutions.

The number of the School’s attendees never exceeded 50-60 people at a time. Some graduates, after obtaining their diplomas, weren’t included in the ministerial reporting as they taught Russian in the so-called new-method madrasah (in “Muhammadiyya” there were three such teachers at the beginning of the century) (National Archive, 3).

Later, when Jadidism took deep roots, the Tatar communities preferred new-method Mektebe schools to the Russian-Tatar schools. Thus, the teachers that suited them most were not teachers' school graduates, but mugallims from the new-method madrasahs.

The Jadidists wanted to see an ethnic school with Russian being taught as one of the subjects, a school that would be controlled by Muslims themselves, but financed by the federal and local governments. But the government authorities imposed a different model.

The Muslims failed to obtain state funding for the Jadid education, so the new-method Mektebes functioned under the auspices of the parish mosques, yet there they experienced no need in the Russian-Tatar schools and graduates of Kazan Tatar Teachers' School (Ostroumov, 1904). The pedagogical potential of such schools, to a large extent, was not realized which led to the halt in their development.

Conclusion

The confessional component of teacher education was an integral part of the all-Russian teacher training system. The Kazan County represented a nonstandard case neither in the sphere of education nor in the formation of the teachers’ succession pipeline in the region.

Acknowledgments

I would like to thank all of the library specialists of the National Archive of the Republic of Tatarstan and Nikolai Lobachevsky Scientific Library of Kazan Federal University, and translator Vera Sepeshvari for their help in working on the research;

References

  1. Bendrikov, K.E. (1960). Ocherki po istorii obrazovania v Turkestanskom krae (1865-1924 gg.) [Essays on the History of Education in Turkestan (1865-1924)] Moscow, 497.
  2. Ilminsky, N.I. (2012). Pisma N.I. Ilminskoro k ober-prokuroru Sv. Sinoda K.G. Pobedonoscevu. Izdatelstvo: Kazan.
  3. Ostroumov, N.P. (1904) Otchet Turkestanskoi uchitelskoy seminar za 25 let eje suszhestvovania. [The Turkestan Teachers' Seminary Report for 25 years of its existence].Tashkent.
  4. National Archive of the Republic of Tatarstan (a). F.142, Inv. 1, f. 41, 154, 194,223, 319, 362.
  5. National Archive of the Republic of Tatarstan (b). F.968, Inv. 1, f.80.

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Publisher

Future Academy

First Online

18.12.2019

Doi

10.15405/epsbs.2017.08.02.36

Online ISSN

2357-1330