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On Monday this new School was opened, in the presence of a large assemblage of parents and friends belonging to the district, and a number of ladies and gentlemen from Oamaru, Kakanui, and Otepopo. Mr David Booth, Chairman of the School Committee, occupied the chair. After an earnest dedicatory prayer by the Eev. Mr Ryley, the Chairman expressed his satisfaction at seeing so numerous an attendance of friends from far and near ; and haying explained the unavoidable absence of the Rot. Mr Todd, and others, called upon the Secretary, Mr J. B>. Elder, to give a report of the Committee's doings. Mr Elder, in giving a short history of the proceedings of the Committee, stated that a valuable site, in the centre of the townihip, had been given by Peter Williams, Esq. ; that over L150 had been locally subscribed, and that the Government had granted L325 ; that Mr Forrester irai the architect, and that the several contractors under him had finished their work in a satisfactory manner ; that out of fourteen applicants for the post of teacher, Mr Robert Peattie, M.A.,had been appointed, and that the Committee considered him well qualified for the office ; that 50 children were that day enrolled, and a considerable number more were expected; that this attendance would at once entitle the school to take the status of a main district school ; that there was every probability of a reserve adjoining the township being granted as a glebe for the teacher, and that of necessity the Government must in course of time erect a residence for him. Mr Fitzgerald, Hector of the Oamaru Grammar School, expressed his pleasure at being present, and said that whatever difference of opinion may have at one time existed as to the necessity for a school at Mabeno, there could be none when they looked at the large number of children present. He expressed his high opinion of the educational system of Otago, comparing it favorably with the systems pursued in the Australian Colonies, recently visited by him. In speaking of examinations and inspections, he stated bis dislike to everything like cramming, and ex* pressed his approbation of the system of inspection carried out in Otago, as being entirely opposed to cramming. He spoke of the In* spectors as being not only scholars but tteachers, and as sympathising with both teachers and scholars in the difficulties of their work. He could speak for Oamaru, and thought he could speak lor North Ota^o, and | was assured that the teachers were thoroughly satisfied with the manner in which their schools had been inspected. He then congratulated the people of Mabeno upon the comfortable and beautifully situated schoolroom which they had erected. He complimented the Com* mittee on their choice of a teacher. Mr Peattie had been teaching in the Grammar School of Oamaru for the past two months, and if he did as excellent work at Maheno as he had been doing there, he would prove a great boon to the district, and as the first teacher of this school, however short might be his stay, he weuld leave the impress of his energy on his pupils. Mr Neil Fleming, in addressing Mr Peattie as first teacher of this new school, expressed the hope that he would not be disheartened by the great amount of very juvenile teaching which would be necessary to raise his pupils to a fair educational standard, but that he would take a lesson iu heroism from his compeers around him, and from every laborer who, by repeated efforts, achieved any good object. He hoped when at examinations, to which he expected to be invited in the future, to find a steady and even rapid progress in all branches of learning taught in the school. In addressing the parents he exhorted them to give the teacher all possible aid by attending to the home preparation of lessons, and in sending the children regularly and punctually to school. Mr Peattie thanked the School Committee and the people generally for the great honor they had done him in electing him as the first teacher of Mabeno school. He hoped that with his own endeavors and the help of the parents, under the blessing of God, to be able bo to teach that hit pupili would grow up to bo a credit and solace to their parents as well as an honor to him. He thanked all for the kindness and sympathy shown him. The Rev. Mr Ryley, in a few happy remarks, generally congratulated the district on the addition to its educational equipments and hoped that the school would prove a source of lasting good. Mr Craig having particularized tbe labors of the Committee in connection with the establishment of the school, called for a hearty vote of thanks to them, coupling the vote with the name of Mr Elder, the Secretary. There was great applause, after whicb Mr Elder suitably replied. The Chairman then thanked the visitors for their presence that day. Several had come long distances to attend, under considerable personal inconvenience, and he gratefully acknowledged their sacrifices. He then formally declared the school open. The announcement was hailed with loud cheers from old and young. Tea, cake, fruit, and lollies, wore then plentifully distributed, and the meeting resolved itself into a pleaiont conversazione. Vote- of thanks having been awarded to tbe ladies who provided the good things, and to the Chairman for presiding, the Key. Mr Rjley pronounced the benediction, and the meeting dispersed.

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Bibliographic details

OPENING OF MAHENO SCHOOL., North Otago Times, Volume XXIII, Issue 1132, 14 October 1875

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OPENING OF MAHENO SCHOOL. North Otago Times, Volume XXIII, Issue 1132, 14 October 1875