A meeting of the Wakanui School Committee was held on the sth inst,, at which all the members were present. The minutes having been read, Mr Brown said the Clerk had made a mistake respecting the letter received from the Board at the previous meeting, and referred to in the minutes. The letter was produced which stated that "the reading books for the sth and 6th' Standards are the sequel to No. 5 and No. 5 Rojal Readers, and for the 7th Standard such reading book as the master may choose." The minutes having been so corrected were confirmed.
The reports from the master's of both schools were received. Mr Dickie complained of the irregular attendance of many of his pupils, and pointed out several children of school age that ought to be at school. The Chairman was instructed to reply that the Committee were of opinion that the influenza epidemic had much to do with the irregular attendance, and that they did nob think it advisable to bring the Compulsory Clauses of the Education Act into force at the present time. It was resolved, on the Masters' application, that the winter holidays be from the 20th to the 30th of this month. A letter was received from the Pride of Wakanui, 1.0. G.T., applying for the use of the Schoolroom for. their anniversary tea meeting to be held on the 24th inst. Granted on condition that they pay the usual fee of ss, and leave the school in a clean and proper state. The Chairman stated that in response to his notification for a clerk he had received two applications: one from Mr W. Mcßae stating that he would attend the meetings of the Committee and do all the clerical work for £5 a year. He also stated that he had had considerable experience, and quite understood the duties required of him. The other letter was from Miss Maiy Stewart, offering her services on the same terms as last year, viz., for the sum of £3, and that the Committee dispense with her attendance at its meetings, and allow her to do her clerical work with her father's assistance at home. It was proposed by Mr Leddy, and seconded by Mr Doak, that Miss Stewart be appointed clerk, and that the Chairman assist her in the performance of her duties. Mr Leddy said she had done the work very satisfactorily during the past year, and her offer being £2 less than Mr Meßae's, he thought the Committee should give her the preference. Mr Brown proposed, as an amendment, that Mr W. Mcßae be appointed clerk, and said that Miss Stewart nad done the work remarkably well, considering that she was young and inexperienced to such work. He would have much preferred to have seen the
Chairman do the clerical work, and thought the present arrangement very like an infringement of the 71st section of the Education Act. He could not consent to any friend of his being placed in the position of the Chairman as proposed by Mr Leddy's motion. Mr Leddy : Who is this Mr Mcßae ? Mr Brown: He is a young man in my employment, of good character, and whose faithful performance of the duties as clerk lam prepared to guarantee. Since the Coimnittee are determined to have a clerk I prefer one that can be seen-at the table attending to his duties, to one that is never seen. The amendment was seconded by Mr Hill; and on being put to the meeting was voted for by Messrs Brown, Hill, and Tait. The motion by Messrs Leddy, Doak, and Cole. The Chairman said he would give his vote to Miss Stewart, otherwise it would look as if the Committee were dissatisfied with the way she ha.d attended to, the duties of clerk during the past year. The motion having been put to the meeting was declared carried, The motions, of _Messrs Meredith and Joyce at the last meeting of the Board of Education were carefully considered, and it was unanimously resolved, "That this Committee heartily endorses Mr Meredith's motion re examination of schools, and hopes the Board will use every endeavor to bring about a beneficial change in the present unsatisfactory system of examination." '' That a uniformity of text books and reading books, as proposed by Mr Joyce, would lessen the cost to parents and tend to improve the present system of education, and that a good spelling book, embracing words outside of- reading lessons, should be used by the higher standards as a means of improving their reading, which we regret to say is almost a failure, and not sufficient to enable them to read a leader in the public press."—"That a copy of the foregoing resolutions be fonvarded to the Board of Education."
In discussing the motions it was stated that two. boys who had passed the sixth standard at last examination had, during the whole year been kept writing Vere Foster's s£d copy books, ana under the eyes of. the Inspectors, and had never read anything higher than the sth reading book, and that on reading an ordinary article in the " Mail" they would be brought to a standstill every few lines by some word that they had never seen before; that such was greatly to be deplored, and was a great alteration from a few years ago. -■■•-'- On the suggestion of Mr Brown a visit was made to the outer buildings. They were considered to be in a very unsatisfactory state, and it was resolved to have the necessary alterations made as soon as possible and the young artist who had embellished the inner court rewarded according to his deserts.
It transpired that the school grounds were used by a large number of children after school hours, and that the freehand dpawing and the destruction of the trees and fences, could not fairly be charged to the school children, nor the master saddled with any laxity oi discipline. Mr Leddy said he had a motion to propose and it was this: "That the boy James Brown, who had passed the 6th Standard, be excluded from the school."
Mr Brown : Why do you single out this boy alone ? "
Mi' Leddy: Because you objected to my girl and Mr Doak's last year, and what was law for the girls should be law for your boy. Mr Brown : You are under a misapprehension. .My boy is at school with the sanction of the Committee, and is not being taught outside of the standard regulations 3 whereas the objections to your girls were made not because they had passed the sixth standard, nor because they were over 15 years of age, but because your ambition could not be satisfied with anything less tha •■ Latin and French, and because I tried to keep y«u within the regulations you would like to expel the boy from school.
Mr Leddy warmly replied, and the meeting terminated.
The jubilee of the introduction of Methodism into New Zealand will be celebrated all over the colony at the end of nevt month,
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Wakanui School., Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2437, 10 June 1890
Wakanui School. Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2437, 10 June 1890
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