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Patience and steady perseverance have at last rewarded the efforts of the member for Waimate with success, the School Committees Election Bill having this time passed the Council by a large majority, and only awaits the Governor's assent to become law. The anomalies attendant upon the conduct of School Committee elections under the Act of. 1877 were notorious, and there will be a universal feeling of satisfaction that these have at last been remedied. The experience of Ashburton last year, for instance— where no less than three successive election.? had to be held; the proceedings have been twice declared invalid, an experience comimon to many localities — sufficiently demonstrated the need for a reform m the law m respect to a clear and intelligible description of what a " householder " is for the purposes of the Act. In all directions there was complaint as to the unsatisfactory results of elections conducted m the most haphazard fashion, often without even approach to a deliberate choice of suitable candidates. Then, again, the congested meeting, held m many of the populous school districts, and the long time required to take the ballot of the householders, pointed t© the need for some greater facilities for recording their votes being provided ; while last, but nevertheless the chief of all the evil effects of the pernicious system of cumulative voting, were denounced on all sides. The cumulative vote has not only been condemned by outside public opinion, but has also been condemned by the House of Representatives ov»cr and over again ; yet, although Bills to repeal it have been carried no less than eight successive tiroes by Major Steward, on seven different occasions a few faddists m the Legislative Council have succeeded m throwing out Bills of which the principal feature was to revert to single voting. But it is a long lane that has no turning, and this session the School Committees' Election Bill has passed without amendment, and the elections m January next will be held under it. This will be regarded as very satisfactory news to all who take an interest m matters educational from one end of the Colony to the other.

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Bibliographic details

SCHOOL COMMITTEE ELECTIONS., Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2517, 13 September 1890

Word Count

SCHOOL COMMITTEE ELECTIONS. Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2517, 13 September 1890