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high as desirable, but they are pleasant and well furnished. Most of them have been carpeted by the scholars, and the walls are furnished with piotures, busts, maps, charts, etc., belonging to the pupils and teachers. The furniture is neat and substantial. In the High School room the desks are single, in the other rooms they are double.
The building is heated by two of Boynton's furnaces, except the basement, which is warmed by stoves. If care is exercised in putting op furnaces, they answer the purpose well. Those now in fuse work well, although at first there was some difficulty, which was occasioned by those who set the furnaces not understanding the business. The building is tolerably vertilated, when compared with school buildings as usually constructed.
We do not propose giving a full account of 'i he building at the present time as we hope to be able to lay before our readers, at no distant day, a particular description of this and the other schools buildings of that city.
SMALL TALK.—But of all the expedients to make the heart lean, the brain gauzy, and to thin life down into the consistency of a cambric kerchief the most sucoessful is the little talk and tattle which, in some charmed circles, is courteously styled conversation. How human beings can live on sach meagre fare—how continue existence in such a famine of topics and on such a short allowance of sense—is a great question, if philosopby could only search it out. All we know is, that such men and women there are, who will go on from fifteen to fourscore, and never a hint on their tombstones, that they died at last of consumption of the head and marasmus of the heart! The whole universe of God, spreading out its splendors and terrors, pleading for their attention, and they wonder it where Mrs. Somebody got that divine ribbon to her bonnet?” The whole world of literature, through its thousand trumps of fame, adjuring them to regard its garnered stores of emotion and thought, and they think, “ It's high time, if John intends to marry Sarah, for bim to pop the question !” When, to be sure, this frippery is spiced with a little envy and malice, and prepares its small dishes of scandal, and nice bits of detraction, it becomes endowed with a slight venomous vitality, which does pretty well, in the absence of soul, to carry on the machinery of living, if not the reality of life.-E. P. Whipple.
Cowles, in his excellent history of plants, notices the virtue of hemp thus laconically: "By this cordage ships are guided, bells are rung, and rogues are kept in awe."
DIVISION OF SCHOOL DISTRICTS.
BY A TEAOHER.
THERE is a class of people in the world who, if they can not rule therselves, are unwilling to see others rule. Now I am not going to apply this to the affairs of our Government generally, but to the affairs of school districts particularly.
In my experience as a teacher I have found many districts much divided with regard to social, moral, religious, and public questions. Opinions and prejudices were so strong, that children have been kept at home, and received no instruction, merely for the reason that the teacher belonged, or did not belong to a particular church, society or congregation, while his moral character was spotless, and his reputation adimpeached and unimpeachable. He is a relation of some one with whom they are at variance; or a particular person has been instrumental in introducing him to the school; or some one has hired him contrary to their wishes, or some other light frivolous circumstances like these have transpired. They can not have their own way, so they vent their spite and slander upon the ways of others.
These reasons seem to be trivial, but I have several cases at hand which I might supply but for want of space. There are other districts where the school-house is the division line, those upon the one side standing in direct opposition to those on the other. This division of sentiment in the parents begets a like division in the minds of the children.
That mutual, harmonious feeling which should exist between scholars, is thus destroyed to the injary of all.
In other districts the division is between having cheap teachers and good teachers. It seems strange that such a course as this should divide intelligent men. I can hardly think that it does, yet districts are thus divided.
Some parents whose children are not as yet much advanced, think that any one will do for a teacher in their case, and think it unfair that they should pay five or ten dollars per month extra to obtain higher qualifications for the benefit of the few. These are a few of the causes which, though trivial, divide school districts.
"SQUIBBS” wants to know if doctors, by looking at the tongne of 8 wagon, can tell what ails it?- Exchange.
Persons who are not doctors can often tell, by listening to a waggio, tongue, what ails its owner.-Louisville Journal.
OPINIONS, ETC., PROM THE OFFICE OF THE STATE SUPERINTENDENT
(Continued from the April Number.)
DISTRIOT OFFIOERS-POWERS AND DUTIES.
Q. Have the District Officers power to substitute for the studies required by law to be taught in the English language, the same studies in German, when the scholars are all Germans ?
A. The law is full and explicit: The prescribed studies must be taught in the English LANGUAGE, or the district loses its school money. The same studies may be persaed in German, or any other language in addition. The teacher, even in the case above supposed, must be qualified to teach the required studies in the English language.
Q. In the case of a Joint District, is the district under the control of the officers of both towns, or only of the one in which the school-house is situated ?
A. In some respects they are, by express provision of law, under the control of the town in which the house is situated; but in others they are under the control of both towns. If the Joint District was to be divided or altered, both Town Superintendents must act, and both Town Olerks should file the order. Still, if one Town Clerk, after receiving the order, should fail to file the order, as required by law, the other filing it, the division or alteration would not, on this account, be illegal, the law having been sufficiently complied with, and in good faith.
Q. Does the government of the school belong to the teacher or to the Board ?
A. The immediate government of the school must rest with the teacher; but his acts are all under the control of the District Board. In all cases, unless it is impossible so to do, the teacher should be sustained by the Board, as any interference on their part, except in his support, weakens his influence, and tends to destroy his authority, and a school without good government is of little use.
Q. If a complaint be lodged before the Town Superintendent against & teacher, is it the duty of the Town Superintendent to grant the case a hearing?
A. Most certainly. He must give a full hearing, and give a decision on the case. His decision may be appealed from to this Department.
Q. If after a school meeting has been called, and business transacted:
it shall appear that proper notice had not been given, that every voter had not been notified, or any other requirements of law in relation to the notice, have not been complied with, is the meeting and its acts illegal ?
A. The School Laws, section 10, provide that no annual meeting shall be deemed illegal for want of a proper notice, unless it shall appear that such omission was intentional and fraudulent. But in case of a special meeting, every requirement of law must be fulfilled to the letter 'o render the meeting legal; and every matter for the consideration of such special meeting must be specified in the notice for its call.
Q. Has the Town Superintendent power to reject a report made by : District Clerk, if he, of his own knowledge, is certain that the report is false—even wilfully false?
A. The School law, section 43, sub-division 5, reads as follows:
“It is the duty of the Town Superintendent in each town, to see that the annual reports of the clerks of the several school districts in his town, are made correctly and in due time."
That is, the Saperintendent can point out and bave corrected, mere informalities or clerical errors. But the Town Superintendent must be governed by the reports of the District Clerks in apportioning moneys, even though he may know the report to be false—the law prescribing an adequate penalty for any such false return. The Town Superintendent is an executive, not a judicial officer; he must, conseqnently, execute the laws as he finds them.
Q. Can a district officer qualify, after the ten days have expired in which by law he must qualify?
A. He can not. His office is then vacant, and must be filled by the remaining members of the Board, or if they fail to do so within the proper time, by the Town Superintendent.
Q. Has the Clerk of a district full power to hire a teacher without the consent of a majority of the Board; or bas he the authority to refuse to enter into contract with a teacher selected by the united voice of the district, and the other members of the Board ?
A. The evident intent of the law in regard to the employment of teachers is, that a majority of the Board shall hire the teacher. If the Clerk obtains, with his own, the endorsement of another member of the Board, they two constitute a majority—the Clerk merely carrying out the wishes of the Board in drawing up and signing the contract in his capacity as Clerk of the Board. If the District Olerk had the power to set the other members of the Board at defiance, he would be the sovereign of the district, unless there was some remedy against such an unwarranted assumption of power. There is such a remedy in the law, which, in effect, declares that a majority of the Board shall select the teacher, as two of them are required to sign the contract; then it plainly becomes the duty of the
Olerk to draw ap the contract and sign it. If he refuses to do this, the other members of the Board should at once declare his office vacant, and proceed to appoint one in his place who will feel it to be his duty to carry out the expressed wishes of the Board and the people.
FORMATION AND ALTERATION OF DISTRIOTS, Q. Can & Joint District be formed of parts of towns lying in different counties?
A. They can, but never should be, except in cases of argert necessity. Nor should Joint Districts ever be formed when it can possibly be avoided. Nine-tenths of all the difficulties in regard to the management of school districts, arises from Joint Districts. Q. Supposing a district to be divided, and the division acted
if subsequently the division be declared illegal, is the supposed new district entitled to public money, if the division be annulled previous to the apportionment?
A. The division being considered as legal, and in good faith acted upon as such, it is, for the time being, and until otherwise decided, a legal district; and the subsequent decision of its illegality does not invalidate its action. Besides, if the district be decided as illegal, it retains its vested rights in the old district, and would be entitled to public money on this ground.
Q. In case of the alteration of a Joint District, can the chairmen of the Town Boards, and the Town Clerks of both towns, be called in?
4. As in case of the alteration of a district, the town officers of the town may be called in, so in the case of a Joint District, the officers of both towns may be called in at first; but no appeal can be taken from the action of the Town Superintendents to a Board thus composed.
Q. Can a Town Superintendent alter the boundaries of a district after a former alteration has been annulled by the State Superintendent on appeal?
A. He can. The decision of an appeal decides the case only upon the facts as presented. Upon a different state of facts, or upon a change in the town, upon an increase of population, or any other sufficient reason, the Superintendent, can, in his discretion, alter the limits of a district. A de cision of the State Superintendent is not so conclusive and final as to forever prevent the proper authorities from changing their districts. It is conclusive and final, so far as the case under consideration goes, and no farther.
ASSESSMENT AND OOLLEOTION OF TAXES.
Q. If a district be organized in supposed conformity to law, and levies