A Tradition of Excellence in Education
President Lathrop considered the training of teachers to be among the most important functions of any state university. His opinion was supported by the new Missouri state constitution of 1865. The document suggested that all state universities house a department in instruction of teaching. It was at this point that the Board of Curators created the Normal College in 1868. Its purpose was to prepare teachers for public schools and E.L. Ripley of Michigan was appointed as the director.
Grace C. Bibb from St. Louis took charge of the school in 1878. She was the first female appointed a deanship at the University. Under her leadership, women were first allowed into the Normal College, then all other University departments. After a series of name changes during the early 1900s, the Normal College eventually became the College of Education.
Dedicated in 1936, Townsend Hall's renovation
in 2001 updated the facilities to include the most modern technologies and capabilities. Townsend Hall was the site of the former Laboratory School. The college celebrated its 140th anniversary
in 2008 and continues to lead the way in education, not only for the State of Missouri, but for the nation and the world.
Timeline - Deans of Education
1867-78: Erastus L. Ripley1878-83: Grace C. Bibb1883-85: David Rice McAnally, Jr. – interim1885-1891 – Edward A. Allen1891-98: J.P. Blanton1898-1903: J.M. White1903-07: Albert Ross Hill1907-08: Jenius Meriam – interim1908-09: Isador Loeb – interim1909-17: W.W. Charters1917-23: Jesse H. Coursault1923-30: M. G. Neale1930-45: Theophil W. H. Irion1945-63: Loran G. Townsend1963-66: Herbert W. Schooling1966-86: Bob G. Woods1986-1991: Wilbur R. Miller
1991-1993: Robert Dollar – Interim1993-2005: Richard L. Andrews2005-2008: Carolyn Herrington2008-2010: Rosemary T. Porter – interim2010-present: Daniel L. Clay