Founder - Pearl M. Tiley
Supervisor of Kindergarten and Primary Schools, Belleville, Illinois.

In 1936 Miss Tiley organized and became a charter member of Delta Chapter where she remained a loyal member until her death in 1955.

Miss Tiley began her teaching career at the age of nineteen in Marissa, Illinois, with grade two. Her first salary was thirty dollars a month for the eight month school term. After another summer at Illinois State Normal University, Miss Tiley launched into a thirteen year career of teaching first grade tots in Belleville. Only twenty years of age, slight of feature, and quite feminine, she had the zeal of a crusader or pioneer. With only one year of experience and still too young to vote, she taught sixty-one first graders, managing "extra curricular" activities such as keeping a fire going in a pot-bellied stove, superintending the drinking at the old school well where a tin cup was chained to the pump, propping the windows open with sticks, supervising the outdoor toilets, preparing the fire clay by washing and grinding it to make it pliable for little fingers, ironing and storing for art work wrapping paper which the pupils saved, ruling both sides of sixty-one slates with a horse shoe nail, and sharpening sixty-one slate pencils daily. She did not weaken under this heavy load. On the contrary she loved her job and continued to teach beginners until the first students she had taught were of university age.

During the next thirty-one years, she completed work at several universities, and until her retirement, she was Kindergarten and Primary Supervisor in the Belleville, Illinois, school system. She completed her Bachelor of Philosophy Degree at the University of Illinois in 1926.

In 1927 Miss Tiley organized the Primary Council, to which all primary teachers belonged. This was the beginning of what later became the Belleville Branch of the Association for Childhood Education. In the Belleville Public Library there is a section devoted to the Belleville Branch of A.C.E. The only shelf honoring an individual has a marker inscribed to Pearl M. Tiley, and each year educational books are added to the shelf in her honor.

Deceased, 1955. (Condensed from a biography written by Helen Hunsinger, Alpha Zeta.)

Last update: 1/01/2009