Items of Interest

Uruguay has a good public school system, which was established some twenty-five or thirty years ago. It is copied after the educational system of the United States, and corresponds to the primary and grammar school grades only. The high school exists in the form of the National University, as it is called. In an enrolment of some fifteen hundred students only forty or fifty are girls. A campaign was started four or five years ago for the establishment by Congress of a women's university. There were many opponents of higher education for women and the measure was fought hard, but the President of the republic was in favor of such action and eventually a law was passed. In 1913 the women's section of the National University opened its doors. It was predicted that there would not be sufficient enrolment to warrant the continuance of the open door, but in the first year the enrolment reached close to the hundred mark.

The sale of public lands in the rural sections of Porto Rico to laborers for dwelling and farming purposes, provided for by an act at the last session of the Insular Legislature, gives some hope of providing better opportunities for the extremely dense population. Under the same act public lands in or near towns are to be sold for dwelling purposes only. There are approximately eight hundred thousand people, representing more than one hundred and fifty thousand families, who belong to the landless class, two thirds of the whole population. There are two classes of land that it is held can and should be placed within the reach of deserving laborers who now belong to the landless class. The first is the unused lane, mostly in the interior, which is owned largely by non-residents, and the second is that portion of the land owned by the Government which is not needed for Government purposes.

Thanksgiving Proclamation
November 6, 1915

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