Lake County Ohio GenWeb

Lillian E. Kurtz

As published in the Alumni Record, Painesville High School, Painesville, Ohio
Compiled and Published by the Painesville High School Alumni Association in 1925

Transcribed by Linda Jeffery, November 2004.

Lillian E. Kurtz, ’81

Lillian E. Kurtz stands prominent among Painesville High School teachers from 1889 to 1903. Her pupils frankly say “She is the best teacher we ever had;” while some go farther by adding, “In High School or in College.”

Miss Kurtz entered the Painesville schools as a child in the First Grade and was graduated in 1881; as she says, “In the good old days when Commencements were held in the basement of The Washington Street school (now torn down). The pillars were wound with festoons of fragrant evergreens and the walls were frescoed with the shiny oak leaves from the big trees that filled the school yard.”

Beginning the next September she taught a school year in the Hine District, where she had 49 pupils in all the grades; from A. B. C. class to one pupil taking High School subjects.

In 1882-1889 she was a recitation teacher in the Seventh and Eighth Grades of the Painesville Schools in the same building where she had spent her entire public school life. At the end of that time she became a teacher in the Painesville High School, where fourteen delightful years were filled with work and happy associations.

Then in 1903, she went to Ashtabula, Ohio, as principal of the High School there. Here she remained until 1908, when she left to study a year at the University of Chicago. The next year she became a teacher in the Chicago High Schools, and while teaching, continued her studies at the University, until in 1912 she received the degree of Bachelor of Science from the University of Chicago.

Since then she has completed six post-graduate majors from the same University, which is required by the Chicago Board of Education in order to enter the highest salary group. At present, Miss Kurtz is a teacher of mathematics at the Fenger High School, Chicago.

As students, we were impressed by Miss Kurtz’s intense earnestness and and remarkable dignity. This was accompanied by an eager desire to know more and more; to develop every power, in the service of her profession. Then, too, we were impressed by her unselfish devotion to her work, and to her students. Nothing was held back; no effort was too great, if one pupil could be helped or an uplift given toward better things. She was diligent, thorough and inspiring with her pupils. It seemed to be her aim to teach them to see and to love the best in nature and books; and to distinguish it from the weak. Miss Kurtz imparted so much of her enthusiasm to her classes in Painesville High School, that there was no difficulty in retaining their interest throughout the course. The clearness, too, with which she presented her class room work was a real advantage, and her genial, fun-loving spirit added zest to our work.

This was her life in Painesville, and the same tireless activity is characteristic of her work in Chicago. Her influence prevails. To day she has the same wonderful outlook on life. We are proud to be her friends, and although Painesville has given to Chicago one of its best teachers, one of its noblest women; still we claim her as one of our most honored alumni.

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Last updated 11 Nov 2004

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© 2004 Cynthia Turk. All rights reserved.