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SAMUEL PROCTOR ORAL HISTORY PROGRAM at
the University of Florida.
Interviewee: Mr. Howard Bishop
Interviewers: Scott Truby
&imM Ri L LEr
T: This is Scott Truby interviewing Mr. Howard W. Bishop, former athletic
coach, twelve years Alachua County Schoolt Superintendent /he man for
whom Howard Bishop Junior High is name, responsible for the acquisition
of Camp Crystal Lake. Mr. Bishop is now retired and divides his time
between his home here in Gainesville and his lake home on Long Pond
just south of Melrose. Mr. Bishop, when you attended GHS as a student,
the school system was organized on an eight-year elementary and four
years of high school. Do you think that was better than today's system
of six, three, and three?
B: Scott, this really takes us way back since I attended Gainesville High
School from 1918 to 1922, when I graduated. At this time, our small
enrollment, due to the small enrollment, the eight-four plan was
probably served GHS better than the present six-three-three pgram..
Iflf uf LHre important thing is to make a good school is not whether or
not it's organized on a six-three-three or a seven-five plan or an
eight-four plan. The two things that count most are how good are the
the teachers and how hard do the students work.
T: Where were Gainesville schools located in those days?
B: There were only two public schools in Gainesville at that time. The
black school was Union Academy and was located at the recreation center
and it went through the ninth grade. The white school was located at
the Kirby-Smith site.
T: There's been a great deal of questions raised as to how much emphasis
should be placed on sports. You were a four-letter man in high school ,
Did sports help your overall development?
B: Sports were very important to me, Scott, /nd to the school. They give
the students a rallying point around which they can develop school
spirit and good feelings toward their institution. Since I coached
Gainesville High School for ten years and all of the sports, sports
served as a means for me to make a living for my family. Every school
should consider all phases of the development of its students and this
takes into consequence physical development as well as mental, moral,
n4 and social growth.
T: You kept in close touch with education throughout the years. What
changes have been made in the subjects being taught?
B: Well, Scott, when I attended Gainesville High School, the program was
about the same for all of the students. There was two years of foreign
language, usually Latin; four years of math, which included algebra
one, algebra two, geometry, trigonometry, and solid geometry; four
years of English and four years of history, which included civics.
You can compare this program with the one that's now being offered to
you at Gainesville High School. It would take too long to point out
all the differences between these two programS,
T: I'm a senior now. Would you recommend going ahead to college for
additional education or would you advise specializing?
B: This apparently innocent question is really a loaded one. Today's
colleges and universities, particularly our junior colleges, are
changing their programs to meet the needs of human beings instead of
offering a program that is largely classical. Vocational, social,
physical, and mental needs are being met. I certainly advise that
every student go as far as his schooling, in his schooling as he or
she is capable of, vocational or otherwise. Specializing may or may
not be desirable. The last time I graduated from the university Dr.
Tigert was speaking on specialization. He said this student came to
school to be, to study science and science was too broad for him and
so he specialized further in biology. And after the biology, he
specialized again and again. And when he graduated from college, he
knew more about the belly of a frog than any living man.
T: Thank you very much. This has been Scott Truby with an interview with