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OF THE

MASSACHUSETTS

PUBLIC SCHOOL SYSTEM.

BY

JOHN W. DICKINSON,

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SECRETARY OF THE BOARD OF EDUCATION.

BOSTON:

NATHAN SAWYER & SON, PRINTERS,

70 STATE STREET.

1893.

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THE MASSACHUSETTS PUBLIC SCHOOL SYSTEM.

THE BOARD OF EDUCATION.

The Massachusetts Board of Education consists of the Govenor and Lieutenant-Governor, and eight members appointed by the Governor with the advice and consent of the Council. The appointed members hold office for eight years.

POWERS AND DUTIES. The Board takes and holds in trust for the Commonwealth any grant or devise of lands, and any donation or bequest of money or other personal property made to it for educational purposes. It prescribes the form of registers to be kept in the schools, and the form of the blanks and inquiries for the returns to be made by school committees, and makes an annual report to the General Court containing an abstract of these returns, together with a detailed report of the doings of the Board. is the duty of the Board to suggest the best means of promoting popular education and to require the towns of the State to obey all laws relating to the establishment and support of public schools.

SECRETARY AND HIS DUTIES. The Board appoints its own secretary, who, under its direction makes an abstract of school returns; collects information respecting the condition of the public schools; and spreads as widely as possible throughout the Commonwealth information concerning the best course of studies, and the best method of instruction for the young, in order that they may receive the best education which public schools can be made to impart.

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He visits different parts of the Commonwealth for the purpose of awakening an interest in the public schools, and receives and arranges in his office the State documents in relation to the public school system. Under the direction of the Board he holds teachers' meetings and teachers' institutes ; publishes an annual report; and sends out blank forms of inquiry, the school registers, the annual report of the Board, and his own annual report, to the clerks of the different cities and towns for distribution.

AGENTS OF THE BOARD OF EDUCATION.

The Board appoints suitable agents to visit the cities and towns for the purpose of inquiring into the condition of the schools, of meeting and conferring with teachers and school committees, and aiding the secretary in organizing and conducting teachers' institutes.

SCHOOL COMMITTEES.

Every city and town in the Commonwealth is required to elect a school committee consisting of three members or of some number divisible by three.

These officers have the general charge and superintendence of the public schools. They determine the number of schools a town shall maintain, the course of studies to be taught, the textbooks to be used, and the method of teaching to be employed. They classify and distribute pupils in such a manner as they think best adapted to their general proficiency and welfare. They elect the teachers and fix their salaries, and at the end of the school year they make a report to their respective towns of their doings, and make such suggestions as they think the welfare of the schools requires. The term of office of the school committee is three years.

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A city by ordinance and a town by vote may require the school committee annually to appoint a superintendent, who, under the direction and control of said committee, shall have the care and supervision of the public schools.

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