Press Release

Ohio Wesleyan Professor To Discuss One-Room Schoolhouses

February 11, 2016 – by Cole Hatcher

Campbell Scribner, Ph.D., to Present 2016 Vogel Lecture on Feb. 29

DELAWARE, Ohio – The consolidation of one-room schools was the most dramatic change to public education over the course of the 20th century, says Campbell Scribner, Ph.D., assistant professor of education at Ohio Wesleyan University.

“Yet even today it is difficult to say whether their closure represented a fulfillment or abandonment of American democracy,” says Scribner, who joined the OWU faculty in 2013. On Feb. 29, Scribner will discuss “One Room Schoolhouses and the Search for a Democratic Past” at 7:30 p.m. in Benes Room B of OWU’s Hamilton-Williams Campus Center, 40 Rowland Ave., Delaware. Admission is free.

During his presentation, Scribner will offer a reappraisal of the one-room schoolhouse and describe an ongoing project to photograph all such schoolhouses still standing in Delaware County. His presentation represents OWU’s 2016 Joseph and Edith Vogel Lecture, which annually focuses on an aspect of local history.

Scribner’s current research covers a broad chronological period but centers on contested notions of democracy in American schools. He has written articles about educational reform in the 1790s, about teaching Communism during the Cold War, and about the consolidation of rural schools over the course of the 20th century. The latter project will become the basis of his first book, a history of “local control” of education from 1900 to the present. His teaching interests also include the history and philosophy of education, the history of childhood, and educational law and politics.

In addition to being an assistant professor of education, Scribner also serves as director of OWU’s adolescent/young adult and multi-age teacher-education programs. Learn more about Scribner and OWU’s Department of Education at owu.edu/education.

Ohio Wesleyan’s annual Joseph and Edith Vogel Lecture is made possible by a generous gift from their son, Ezra F. Vogel, Ph.D., a 1950 Ohio Wesleyan graduate, native of Delaware, and retired professor of East Asian Studies at Harvard University. Ezra Vogel also is the author of the critically acclaimed book, “Deng Xiaoping and the Transformation of China.” Learn more about the lecture series and OWU’s Department of History at owu.edu/history.


Founded in 1842, Ohio Wesleyan University is one of the nation’s premier liberal arts universities. Located in Delaware, Ohio, the private university offers 87 undergraduate majors and competes in 23 NCAA Division III varsity sports. Ohio Wesleyan combines a challenging, internationally focused curriculum with off-campus learning and leadership opportunities to connect classroom theory with real-world experience. OWU’s 1,675 students represent 43 U.S. states and territories and 33 countries. Ohio Wesleyan is featured in the book “Colleges That Change Lives,” listed on the latest President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll with Distinction, and included in the U.S. News & World Report and Princeton Review “best colleges” lists. Learn more at www.owu.edu.