John K. Norton Collection
John K. Norton was a Professor of Education at Teachers College, Columbia University from 1938-1950. Norton, one of this country’s distinguished educators, has exerted a profound influence upon school administration in particular and education in general. His deep insight and understanding of the social economic base of public education, its self structured organizational patterns and inherent qualities for perpetuating our way of life – the democratic way – have been felt by students and practitioners alike. His has been, indeed a highly rewarding life.
He earned his degrees at Stanford and Columbia University. His professional positions include service as a teacher, principal, and superintendent in the public schools of California (1917-1920): director of research for the National Educational Administration, Teachers College, Columbia University (1942-1958). He has led several consultant positions at the national level including membership on the First Educational Policies Commission (N.E.A. 1936- 1943), and from 1942 to 1958, he served as chairman of this commission. Since 1958, Dr. Norton has served as professor emeritus at Teachers College, Columbia University. Norton was Chief of Party in India during 1959-1961. The India Project worked to evaluate and develop education in India.
He is the author of numerous publications including Ability of the States to Finance Education: An Inventory of Public School Expenditures in the United States; Education and economic well-Being; Changing Demands on Education and Their Fiscal Implications; and with his wife as co-author, Foundations of Curriculum Building.
The American Association of School Administrators, in 1963, presented Dr. Norton with an award for Distinguished Service in School Administration.
The John Norton collection includes general professional correspondence, 1916-1980; correspondence, 1939-1972, relating to the Educational Policies Commission, National Education Association, on which he served; correspondence and miscellaneous documents, 1923-1973, relating to the Teachers College Dept. of Educational Administration, and to the history of the College; speeches, 1924-1967; published and unpublished writings, 1921-1967; subject files he gathered, 1939-1979, containing correspondents, notes, clippings, and miscellaneous printed materials on the relationship of church and state, his responses to public attacks on education, communism and education, federal aid to education, and miscellaneous topics; correspondence and reports, 1957-1972, relating to the Teachers College/U.S. Agency for International Development project in India. There is also, correspondence, legal and financial documents, curriculum vitae, will, address books, oral history, military records, clippings, and other documents relating to his personal and family life. Photographs, 1919-1970, document personal and professional life, travel, his years in India, and his Olympic career (he held the world record for the 440 yard hurdle from 1920-1927). Of note are diaries, 1930-1961; correspondence; speeches and articles, 1921-1978, of Norton's wife, Margaret M. Alltucker Norton, relating to her own work in education, work she did with her husband, and personal and family matters.
John K. Norton Faculty File