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We give entire the revised school law of March 10, 1827, which repeals all previous legislative acts, on the subject of public schools, and embodies their more valuable provisions with new features, more applicable to the general progress of improvement:

An Act to Provide for the Instruction of Youth. SECTION 1. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court assembled and by the authority of the same, That each town or district within this Commonwealth, coutaining fifty families, or householders, shall be provided with a teacher or teachers, of good morals, to instruct children in orthography, reading, writing, English grammar, geography, arithmetic, and good behavior, for such term of time as shall be equivalent to six months for one school in each year: and every town or district, containing one hundred families, or householders, shall be provided with such teacher or teachers, for such term of time as shall be equivalent to twelve months, for one school in each year: and every town or district, containing one hundred and fifty families, or householders, shall be provided with such teacher or teachers, as shall be equivalent to eighteen months, for one school in each year: and every city, town, or district, containing five hundred families or householders, shall be provided with such teacher or teachers, for such term of time as shall be equivalent to twenty-four months for one school in a year; and shall also be provided with a master of good morals, competent to instruct, in addition to the branches of learning aforesaid, the bistory of the United States, book-keeping by single entry, geometry, surveying, and algebra; and shall employ such master to instruct a school in such city, town, or district, for the benefit of all the inhabitants thereof, at least ten months in each year, exclusive of vacations, in such convenient place, or alternately at such places in such city, town, or district, as the said inhabitants, at their meeting in March or April, annually, shall determino: and in every city or town, containing four thousand inhabitants, such masters shall be competent to instruct, in addition to all the foregoing branches, the Latin and Greek languages, history, rhetoric, and logic.

2. Be it enacted, &c., That the several towns and districts in this Commonwealth be, and they hereby are authorized and empowered, in town meetings to be called for that purpose, to determine and define the limits of school districts, within their towns and districts, respectively: Provided, that nothing contained in this act shall be so construed, as to prevent any town from carrying into effect the provisions of this act, in their corporate capacity, and not in school districts, if said town shall so determine.

3. Be it, &e., That it shall be, and it hereby is made the duty of the president, professors, and tutors of the University at Cambridge, and of the several colleges in this Commonwealth, preceptors and teachers of academies, and all other instructors of youth, to take diligent care, and to exert their best endeav. ors to impress on the minds of children and youth, committed to their care and instruction, the principles of piety, justice, and sacred regard to truth, love to country, humanity, and universal benevolence, sobriety, industry, and frugality, chastity, moderation and temperance, and those other virtues which are the ornament of human society, and the basis upon which the republican constitution is founded. And it shall be the duty of such instructors, to endeavor to lead those under their care, as their ages and capacity will admit, into a particular understanding of the tendency of the above-mentioned virtues, to preserve and perfect a republican constitution, and to secure the blessings of liberty, as well as to promote their future hapiness, and the tendency of the opposite vices to slavery and ruin. And it shall be the duty of the resident ministers of the gospel, the selectmen, and school committees, in the several towns in this Commonwealth, to exercise their influence, and use their best endeavors that the youth of their respective towns and districts do regularly attend the schools established and supported as aforesaid, for their instruction.

4. Be it, &c., That the several towns in this Commonwealth are hereby authorized, empowered and directed, at their annual meetings for the choice of town officers, or at any regular meeting called for that purpose, to vote and raise such sums of money for the support of the schools aforesaid, as they shall

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judge necessary for that purpose, which sums so voted to be raised, shall be assessed and collected in like manner as other town taxes are by law assessed and collected.

5. Be it, &'c., That each town in this Commonwealth shall, at the annual meeting thereof, for the choice of town officers, choose by written or printed ballots, a school committee consisting of threc, five, or seven persons, who shall have the general charge and superintendence of all the public schools in said town, which are supported at the expense thereof. Provided, That any town containing four thousand inhabitants, and upwards, may choose an additional number, not exceeding five; and it shall be the duty of said committee to require full and satisfactory evidence of the good moral character of all instructors who may be employed in the several schools in said town, and to satisfy themselves, by personal examination or otherwise, of their literary qualifications and capacity for the government of schools; and no instructor shall be entitled to receive any compensation for his or her service in the instruction of any of the schools aforesaid, without first obtaining from said committee a certiticate of his or her qualifications as aforesaid; and it shall furthermore be the duty of said committee to determine the number and qualifications of the scholars to be admitted into the school kept for the use of the whole town as aforesaid; to visit such school, at least quarter yearly, for the purpose of making a careful examination thereof, and of seeing that the scholars are properly supplied with books; and they shall at such examinatica, inquire into the regulation and discipline of such schools, and the habits and proficiency of the schol. ars therein; and said committee, or some one or more of them, shall visit each of the district schools of said town, for the purposes aforesaid, on some day during the first or second week of the commencement thereof, and also on some day during the two last weeks of the same, and also all the schools kept by said town, once a month for the purpose aforementioned, without giving previous notice thereof to the instructors.

6. Be it, &c., That each town in this Commonwealth, which is or may be divided into school districts, at their annual meeting aforesaid, shall, in addition to the committee aforesaid, choose a committee for each school district in said town, consisting of one person, who shall be a resident in the district for which he shall be chosen, and be called the Prudential Committee thereof, whose duty it shall be to keep the school-house of such district in good order, at the expense of such district; and in case there be no school-house, 10 provide a suitable place for the school of the district, at the expense thereof; to provide fuel, and all things necessary for the comfort of the scholars therein; to select and contract with a school teacher for his own district, and to give such information and assistance to the said school committee, as may be necessary to aid them in the discharge of the duties required of them by this act: Provided, That in any town in this Commonwealth, which shall so determine, the members of said prudential committee may be chosen in the several school districts to which they respectively belong, in such manner as said district may decide.

7. Be it, &c., That the school committee of each town shall direct and determine the class-books to be used in the respective classes, in all the several schools kept by said town; and the scholars sent to such schools shall be supplied by the parents, masters, or guardians, with the books prescribed for their classes ; and the school committee of each town shall procure, at the expense of the town, and to be paid for out of the town treasury, a sufficient supply of such class-books for all the schools aforesaid, and give notice of the place or places where such books may be obtained; and such books shall be supplied to such scholars at such prices as merely to reimburse to the town the expense of the same; and in case any scholars shall not have been furnished by their parent, master, or guardian, with the requisite books, all such scholars shall be supplied therewith by the school committee, at the expense of the town: and the school committee shall give notice in writing to the assessors of the town, of the names of the scholars so supplied by them with books, of the books 80 furnished, the prices of the same, and the names of the parents, masters, or guardians, who ought to have supplied the same; and said assessors shall add the amount of the books so supplied to the next annual tax of the parents, masters, or guardians, who ought to have supplied the same; and the amount 80 added, shall be levied, collected, and paid into the town treasury, in the same manner as the public taxes: Provided, however, that in case such assessors shall be of opinion that any of such parents, masters or guardians are not able, and can not afford to pay the whole expense of the books so supplied on their account respectively, such parents, masters, or guardians shall be exhonorated from the payment of the whole or part of such expense, and the said assessors shall omit to add the amount of such books, or shall add only a part thereof to the annual tax of such parent, master, or guardian, according to the proportiou of such expense, which such parent, master, or guardian shall, in their opinion, be able and can afford to pay: Provided, nevertheless, That in cases where children are already supplied with books, which shall not be considered by the committee as being extremely faulty, in comparison with others which might be obtained, and which may be possessed in such numbers as to admit of the proper and convenient classification of the school, then, and in that case, the committee shall not direct, the purchase of new books, without first obtaining the consent of the parents, masters, or guardians of a majority of the children, 80 already provided for, under the term of two years from the passing of this act, unless such books become so worn as to be untit for use: Provided also, That said committee shall never direct any school books to be purchased or used in any of the schools under their superintendence, which are calculated to favor any particular religious sect or tenet.

8. Be it, &c., That the School Committee in the city of Boston, and in the several towns in this Commonwealth be, and they hereby are required to make and return å report to the Secretary of the Commonwealth, on or before the first Monday of June, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and twenty-eight, and on the first Monday of June of every year thereafter, the amount of money paid by such city or town during the year ending on the first day of May preceding the time of making said report, for the instruction of the schools kept by said city or town; the number of school districts into which said city or town is divided, the aggregate number of months that the several schools were kept by such city or town in said year, and what portion thereof was kept by male, and what by female teachers; the whole number or pupils who have attended and of the schools kept by such city or town during said year; the number of academies and private schools; the number of pupils in the academies and private schools who have not attended any school kept by such city or town during said year; the estimated amount of the compensation paid to the instructors of academies and private schools during the said year; and whether there are any, and what number of persons, over fourteen and under twenty-one years of age who are unable to read and write.

9. Be it, &c., That it shall be the duty of the Secretary of the Commonwealth, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and twenty-eight, and every year thereafter, to furnish to each city and town, a blank form of return, in manner following, viz:

[The blanks contain columns with the following headings : Amount paid for public instruction during the year; Number of public school districts ;

Aggregate time of keeping the schools in the year, estimated in months, and what portion thereof was kept by male, and what by female teachers; Whole number of pupils attending the schools kept by the town in the course of the year; Number of academies and private schools ; Number of pupils in acadeinies and privnte schools not attending public schools; Estimated amount of compensation of instructors of academies and private schools ; Number of persons over fourteen years and under twenty-one, unable to read and write.

10. Be it, &c., That the inhabitants of the several school districts, within any town which bath already, or which shall hereafter define the limits of such districts, qualified to vote in town affairs, be, and they hereby are empowered at any meeting called in the manner hereinafter provided, to raise money for erecting or repairing a school house in their respective districts, or to purchase or hire any houso or building, to be used as a school-house, and also to purchase land for a school-house to stand upon, and for the accommodation of the samo; to determine in what part of said district such school-house shall staud; to choose a committee to superintend the building, repairing. or purchasing of such school-house; to choose a clerk, who shall be sworn faithfully to discharge the

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duties of his office, and whose duty it shall be to make a fair record of all the votes passed at any meeting of said district, and to certify the same when required, and shall hold such office until another person shall be chosen and sworn in his room; also to raise money at any such meeting, to procure necessary utensils for their respective school-houses, to be certified as aforesaid and assessed in manner as is hereinafter provided : Provided, however, That any town may carry into effect the provisions of this section, in their corporate capacity, and at the expense of the town; and may at any legal meeting raise and assess taxes, and adopt all necessary and proper measures for providing school. houses and sites thereof, for the several school districts in such town.

11. B: it, dec., That for the purposes aforesaid, every person shall be taxed in the district in which he lives for all the estate he holds in the town, being under his own actual improvement, and all other of his real estate in the same town shall be taxed in the district in which it is included; and lands where the owner thereof lives without the town, shall be taxed in such district as the assessors, having regard to the local situation thereof, shall appoint; and it shall be the duty of the assessors, before they assess a tax for any district, to determine in which district such lands respectively shall be taxed, and to certify in writing their determination to the clerk of the town, who shall record the same; and such land, while owned by any person residing without the limits of the town, shall be taxed in such districts, until the town shall be dis. tricted anew. Provided, however, That all the lands within any town, owned by the same person not living therein, shall he taxed in one and the same district; and the assessors shall assess, in the same manner as town taxes are assessed, on the polls and estates of the inhabitants comprising any school districts detined as aforesaid, and on lands in said town belonging to persons living out of the same, wbich the assessors shall have directed to be taxed in such district, all moneys voted to be raised by the inhabitants of such district for the purposes aforesaid, in thirty days after the clerk of the district shall certify to said assessors the sum voted by the district to be raised, as aforesaid ;

and it shall be the duty of said assessors to make a warrant in due form of law, directed to one of the collectors of the town to wbich such district belongs, requiring and empowering said collector to levy and collect the tax so assessed, and to pay the same, within a time to be limited in said warrant, to the treasurer of the town, to which a certificate of the assessment shall be made by the assessors; and the money so collected and paid, shall be at the disposal of the committee of the district, to be by them applied to the building or repairing of a school-house, or to the purchase of a house or building to be used as a school-house, or to the purchase of land for the site of a school-house, as herein provided for, in the district to which such committee shall belong: and such collector, in collecting such tax, shall have the same powers, and be holden to proceed in the same manner, as is by law provided in collecting town taxes.

12. Be it, &c., That the treasurer of any town to whom a certificate of the assessment of a district tax shall be transmitted as aforesaid, shall have the same authority to enforce the collection and payment of the money so assessed and certitied, as if the same had been voted to be raised by the town, for the town's use; and the treasurer and collector shall be paid the same commissions on the money collected and paid for the use of the school district aforesaid; and the assessors for assessing said tax, shall be allowed by the district the same sum for each and every day while employed in assessing the same as is allowed and paid by the town for similar purposes.

13. Be it, &c., That the assessors of the several towns and districts in this Commonwealth be, and they are hereby vested with the same power to remit sums of money assessed on the inhabitants of every school district, for the purpose of purchasing, building, hiring, repairing or furnishing school-houses, as they have to remit any sums of money assessed on the inhabitants of any town or district for defraying town or district expenses.

14. B: it, &c., That it shall be the duty of the selectmen of the several towns, divided into school districts as aforesaid upon application made to them in writing by three or more freeholders resident within any school district in their respect. ive towns or if there be not so many freeholders resident in such district, then

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any three of the inhabitants thereof, who pay taxes,' to issue their warrant di. rected to one of the persons making such application, requiring him to warn the inhabitants of such district qualified to vote in town affairs, to meet at such time and place in the same district, as the selectmen shall in their warrant appoint; and the warning aforesaid shall be by notifying personally every person in the district, qualified to vote in town affairs, or by leaving at his last and usual place of abode a written or printed notification, expressing the time, place, and purpose of the meeting, seven days at least, before the time appointed for hold. ing the same. Provided, however, that any school district, at any regular meeting thereof, warned as aforesaid, having an article in the warrant of the selectmen for that purpose, shall have power to prescribe the mode of warning all future meetings of such district, and the mode so prescribed shall be legal until altered by such district at a subsequent meeting thereof; and any vote to raise money for any of the purposes aforesaid, passed by a majority of the inhabitants of a school district present at a district meeting, warned and held as aforesaid, shal} be obligatory on the inhabitants of said school district to be assessed, levied, and collected, in the manner herein provided.

15. Be it, &c., That if the inhabitants of any school district can not agree where to erect or place a school-house for the accommodation of the same, the selectmen of the town to which such district belongs, upon appplication made to them by the committee of the district for building or placing the school. house, are hereby authorized and empowered to determine the place where a school-house for the accommodation of the district shall be placed or erected.

16. Be it, &c., That whenever a meeting of the inhabitants of any school district, within this Commonwealth shall be called for the purpose of raising money as aforesaid, and a majority of the voters present are opposed to the raising of money for any of the purposes contemplated in the warrant for calling such meeting; shall be lawful for any tive or more of the freeholders, who are in. habitants of said school district, or if there be not so many freeholders resident in such district, then any five of the inhabitants thereof, who pay taxes, to make application in writing to the selectmen of the town in which such school district is situated, requesting them to insert in their warrant for calling the next town meeting an article requiring the opinion of the town relative to the expediency of raising such moneys, as are proposed in the warrant for said district meeting; and if the majority of the voters present in said town meet. ing, shall think the raising of any of the sums of money proposed in said warrant to be necessary and expedient, they shall grant such sum or sums as they shall think necessary, for the purposes contemplated, and the same shall be assessed on the polls and estates of the inhabitants of said district, and colo lected and paid over in the manner herein provided.

17. it, &c., That each and every school district in this Commonwealth is hereby made a body corporate, so far as to bring and maintain any action on any agreement made with any person or persons for the non-performance thereof, or for any damage done to their school-houses, or other property, and shall be liable to have any action brought and maintained against them for the non-performance of any contract made by them; and said corporation shall have power to take and hold, in fee simple, or otherwise, any estate, real or personal, which has been, or may be given by any person or persons, for the purpose of supporting a school or schools in said district, and apply the same for the purposes aforesaid ; and may prosecute or defend any suit or suits relative to the same; and every member of any school district shall and may be admitted as a competent witness, and his deposition be used in the same manner as inhab. itants of towns, districts, precincts, or parishes, or religious societies are by law now admitted, and their depositions taken and used.

18. Be it, cc., That nothing in this act contained shall be so construed as to effect the right of any corporation heretofore, or which may be hereafter esstablished in any city, town or district in this Commonwealth, to manage any estate, or funds given or obtained for the purpose of supporting schools therein, or in anywise to effect any such estate or funds given or obtained for the purpose aforesaid, but such corporate powers, and such estate and funds shall be and remain as if such act had never passed.

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