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Step Back In Time

May 7, 2014

Step Back in Time: May 7, 2014

50 years agoMay 7, 1964

Oneonta’s Board of Education was jolted Wednesday night when they were told of the resignation, effective at the end of the current school year, of William A. Swain, principal at Plains and Chestnut Street schools.

Mr. Swain, 11 years in the Oneonta school system, is leaving to take up a post in the “Teacher Training for East Africa Program” of Columbia University.

Principal at Chestnut Street since 1961, Mr. Swain was named to head both Chestnut Street and Plains on the retirement last year of veteran Plains principal Mrs. Ruth St. John.

Mr. Swain explained that he will be working in teacher training at two-year colleges somewhere in the three East Africa countries of Kenya, Tanganyika and Uganda. The assignment under Columbia’s training program is for two years and begins, he said, with an “orientation” program July 6-August 14 at Columbia.

Once that is completed, Mr. Swain and his wife, the former Molly Myrus, and their four sons will enplane for Africa and the new duties. He said another orientation session at the African college may also be added to the agenda before he starts his duties.

His duties there, he explained, will be in regular pre-service instruction in a system working much as it does in the USA. Also teachers in the program will be setting up “in-service” courses for teachers through extension classes and workshops.

He said the ultimate objective of the Columbia project working with education authorities in the three lands is to “federate” the educational system in Kenya, Tanganyika and Uganda into a single university-college system.

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