Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

Degree Granting Department

Secondary Education

Major Professor

Bárbara C. Cruz, Ed.D.

Committee Member

Stephen J. Thornton, Ph.D.

Committee Member

J. Howard Johnston, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Madeline Cámara, Ph.D.


Annexation by Acalamation, Civics Education, Cuba, History of Cuban Education, Spanish American War



During the fourteen years between 1898 and 1912, the influences imparted upon the School System of Cuba were substantial. In the period immediately following the conflict with Spain, known in the U.S. as the Spanish American War, a concerted effort was underway to annex the island of Cuba. This study was undertaken to discover what courses were introduced into the K-12 curricula following the U.S. intervention, who introduced those changes, and what, if any influence those changes brought to the culture of the island. This investigation and analysis was necessary to reinvigorate the discussion regarding the history of the Cuban education system in view of the attempted cultural change brought about by the U.S. intervention. While many actions were underway by various factions both within the U.S. government and without to ensure that the annexation would be successful, one concerted effort was undertaken through the reconstruction of Cuba's schools. Changes that were made include: coursework, textbooks, structure of schools, selection process for teachers and professors at the University of Havana, holiday schedule, and the school-day and school-year. While the language of instruction remained Spanish, the method of delivery and training of Cuban school teachers was adapted through an extended summer Normal School program in association with Harvard University and a fulltime program at the New Paltz Normal School in New York. From the results collected regarding the coursework, individuals involved, and the changes imparted upon the culture of Cuba, it appears that a concerted effort was underway to impose a U.S.-styled school system on Cuba with the intended result of annexation of the island of Cuba by acclamation of the Cuban people.