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BC Sessional Papers

RETURN To an Address of the Legislative Assembly for copies of all telegrams, petitions, and correspondence… British Columbia. Legislative Assembly 1878

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 41 Vic. Correspondence—Cache Creek School. 439
To an Address of the Legislative Assembly for copies of all telegrams, petitions,
and correspondence between the Trustees of the Cache Creek School and the
Government, since 1st February, 1876.
By Command.
A. C. Elliott,
Provincial Secretary.
Provincial Secretary's Office,
23rd February, 1878.
Cache Creek, May 6th, 1877.
To A. C. Elliott, Esq..—
Sir,—When you relieve us of our duties as Trustees does it relieve us of the liabilities of the school ?   Blease answer.
(Signed) C. A. Semlin,
J. C. Barnes,
W. H. Sanford.
Victoria, 6th May, 1877.
To C. A. Semlin:—
Will answer by mail.
(Signed) A. C. Elliott.
Cache Creek, May 6th, 1877.
To Provincial Secretary:—
Sir,—Please instruct Mr. Clemitson to continue boarding school a few days until
you hear from people here.
(Signed) J. C. Barnes,
for Board of Trustees.
Victoria, 6th May, 1877.
To R. M. Clemitson:—
Continue hoarding school until further advised.
(Signed) A. C. Elliott.
Cache Creek, May 7th, 1877.
To the Hon. the Provincial Secretary:—
Mr. Leduc, the present teacher, informs me that there are twenty-five children in
attendance at the Cache Creek School. Will the Government suspend the order of
closing it as a boarding school until the Trustees get a fair and impartial hearing ?
Please answer.
(Signed) Philip Parke. 440 Correspondence—Cache Creek School. 1878
Memorial of Messrs. Philip Parke, W. H. Sanford, C. A. Semlin, and J. C. Barnes.
To the Hon. A. C. Elliott :--
Sir,—We, the undersigned, beg to memorialize your Government of our opinions in
regard to the conduct of the Cache Creek Boarding School, and of certain charges made
against the Board of Trustees by the Deputy Superintendent of Education, in a letter
to the Superintendent of Education dated March 20th, 1877, and published in the British
Colonist of April 18th, 1877. In regard to the conduct of the school during the past
winter, Mr. Clemitson urges that he was as much in fault as the teacher and matron.
In this he may be right, inasmuch as when he applied to be admitted as a boarder at
the school he promised the Board of Trustees that he would be very observing of the
conduct of the school, and he thought it would be all the better for the school if ho
boarded at the institution. His letter, as well as that of the teacher, is calculated to
mislead those who look upon those letters for a fair statement of the ease. First, in
regard to locking the girls'dormitory: Mr. Irwin found when he took charge of the
institution that it was the custom to turn the key in this door when the matron retired
at night, and he continued the custom for some time. He then, it seems, discontinued
the practice without informing the trustees, and eventually resumed the practice without reference to the trustees—thus showing that the fear of fire was not a governing
idea with him. When interrogated by the board in reference to his neglect in this particular, he asserted that he discontinued locking the door after consulting with the then
matron, who agreed with him about the undesirability of locking the door. When this
lady was asked to explain she said that she had never advised omitting- the precaution,
but, on the contrary, had at different times urged upon the parties in charge the desirability of adopting every precaution. Mr. Clemitson says, had any accident occurred by
fire, the trustees would have been the first to have blamed the teacher. Now, this is
wholly a gratuitous assertion on his part, and for which he has no evidence whatever;
and if it needed any argument to convince anyone that they did not believe it themselves, then that argument can be found in the fact that, without any reference to the
trustees, he resumed the practice of locking the door just about the time the building
had a slight fire. In regard to the time that elapsed between the time the teacher
knew of the immoral practices and the time the trustees were informed of the state of
affairs by public rumor, Mr. Clemitson and the teacher, in their correspondence with
Mr. Jessop, do not agree. Mr. Irwin would lead you to believe that onky a week or ten
days elapsed, while Mr. Clemitson comes nearer the time, making it about three weeks.
Mr. Irwin would have you believe that he had no opportunity of informing the trustees,
and that their having to first hear the news from the public was no fault of his. Now,
what are the facts ? During the three weeks that these people were nursing their
knowledge in secret the time for the regular monthly meeting arrived, and two members of the board attended. What hindered the teacher from letting these know of the
irregularities ? Again, during the week following this meeting one of the board visited
the school on business, and in conversation with the Deputy Superintendent and matron
was asked why certain children had been withdrawn from school, and informed them
that the parent in question considered that the girls were not sufficiently looked after.
Here two opportunities were brought home to them of informing the board or members
of it, and what reason had they for withholding the information ? In regard to the
reason Mr. Clemitson assigned for his resignation to the Board of Trustees, they were
that he could not again meet those people to whom he had been praising the school,
and that if the teacher and matron were to blame he considered he was just as much in
fault. Now, to Mr. Jessop he says that he refuses to be further connected with the
Board of Trustees, on account of their social standing and their want of knowledge and
discretion. Now, when does he make this discovery ? He had already made one
report in which he spoke in terms of praise of the board ; he had visited different parts
of the country, praising the school and advising parents to send their children to it; he
had just returned from the Nicola, where he said he had heard the best reports of the
school, and all under this same Board of Trustees ; and this brings us up to the time
when he discovered we possessed all the faults he enumerates in his correspondence to
Mr. Jessop, viz.: to the time when we found from public rumour that we must meet and
investigate the charges brought against the school, and when, in our opinion, a change
in the supervision was eminently necessary.   Mr. Clemitson held a different view and 41 Vic. Correspondence—Cache Creek School. 441
maintained that with the warning this had been to those in charge we need not fear a
repetition of the offence. We considered that our duty to the school was to make as
thorough a change in the supervision as our powers would allow us to effect. Here,
we think, was the first time there had been a difference on the board. Mr. Clemitson
accuses us of expediency, while we claim that the course he proposed was a course of
expediency, viz.: to retain people in a responsible position who had proved themselves
wholly unable to maintain an efficient control of the school, no matter from what cause,
whether from inexperience, indifference, or indolence. We preferred the principle of
holding those in charge answerable for the success with which they administered the
affairs of the school, and that the retention of their position depended wholly upon this.
We did not wish the school to come down to this fact: that because the teacher was a
favourite of the Deputy Superintendent, that we should overlook such grave remissness
as we claim was exhibited. In conclusion, Mr. Clemitson advises that the power should
be vested in the teacher and Deputy Superintendent, that theyT should have full control
of the school. Now, will Mr. Clemitson deny that this is just what the teacher and
deputy have had all winter?—full control; that trustees met to discuss financial matters, procuring wood, &c, but that the internal management was wholly left to the
teacher and deputy; so that the whole sum of our offences as a board was accepting
the resignation of the teacher and matron. In reference to the future of the school, we
are of tho opinion that it can be conducted as a mixed school without the occurrences
of the past being repeated ; and we beg earnestly to impress upon you that, owing to
the isolated position of tho settlers in this part of the Province, many of the residents
will be wholly unable to avail themselves of a day school, and if this institution is
closed will be compelled to raise their children in ignorance. We therefore earnestly
beg that our only means of education be allowed to remain a boarding school.
Whatever decision  your Government arrive at, please inform us at your earliest
convenience, before the children be distributed to their several homes.
(Signed) Philip Parke,
W. H. Sanford,
C. A. Semlin,
Cache Creek, May hth, 1877, J. C. Barnes.
Petition of J. C. Barnes and others.
To the Honourable A. C. Elliott, Esq.:—-
Sir,—We, the undersigned parents and guardians having children at the Cache
Creek Boarding School, beg respectfully to request that you will continue the present
teacher and matron in tho position they now occupy, viz.: Mr. Leduo as teacher, and
Mrs. Schubert as matron—as those parties have our full confidence and, we feel assured,
will conduct the school in the interest of the public.
And we will, as in duty bound, ever pray, &c, &c.
(Signed) J. C. Barnes, Elijah Brink,
W. H. Sanford, Frank Perault,
Thomas Dunn, E. G. Perry,
John Wilson, James H. Orr.
Hon. A. C. Elliott to Messrs. Barnes, Sanford, and others.
Province of British Columbia.
Victoria, 19th July, 1877.
Gentlemen,—In reply to your letter, without date, received by me on the 14th
inst., I have the honour to acquaint you that the Superintendent of Education will, by
this mail, convey to the manager of the Cache Creek Boarding School the determination
arrived at by tho Government on the subject of your communication.
I have, etc.,
(Signed) A. C. Elliott. 442 Correspondence—Cache Creek School. 1878
Superintendent of Education to Mr. Leduc
Education Office,
Victoria, 19th July, 1877.
Dear Sir,—I have the honour to inform you that it has been decided by the
Governmemt that the Cache Creek Boarding School shall be continued, so long as its
present self-sustaining character is maintained, for girls of school age ; but that boys,
in the future, shall not be admitted over ten years of age. Boys over ten years of age
who may bo already in the school are not to be dismissed for the present.
Details with reference to management will be forwarded at an early date.
Yours, etc.,
(Signed) John Jessop.
Cache Creek Boarding School.
This establishment, having been placed on an entirely new footing, is respectfully
recommended to the consideration of parents who may be desirous of securing for their
children the benefits of a good practical English education at the lowest possible cost.
It is confidently expected that, under the improved arrangements, and with the constant
supervision of the thoroughly qualified teacher in charge, the school will in all respects
merit a high place in public esteem, and fill its intended position as a means of educating
the youth brought within the range of its influence.
The school is open to girls of school age and to boys under ten, whose continuance
in the institution will be dependent on good behaviour.
Fees are payable in advance, fractions of a month being charged as a full month.
The rates, which are regulated on a sliding scale, are given below. Washing is included
in the fixed monthly charge, but books and other school room requisites will be supplied
as extras.
One pupil    $10 00 per month.
Two pupils (members of the same family)    18 00      „
Three pupils       „ ,,      24 00
Four pupils „ „      30 00      „
The school term extends from the middle of August? to the end of June, during
which time pupils must remain at the school, except in cases of severe or protracted
illness. Relatives of the pupils are allowed to visit the school during proper hours, to
examine the condition and appearance of the pupils.
The only vacation is one of six weeks at midsummer, when pupils must return to
their respective homes.    Half the ordinary fees will be charged during vacation.
Each pupil, on entering the school, must bring 4 sheets, 4 pillow slips, 2 pair of
blankets, and such clothing as may be deemed necessary by the matron. When two
members of a family are of the same sex, one set of bed clothing will be sufficient for
The kitchen is under the management of an experienced female cook, and female
pupils are expected to take turns in assisting in this department, and also in house-
cleaning, mending, &c.; while the boys are required to aid in cutting wood, carrying
water, &c.
Every attention will be paid to the personal comfort and well-being of the pupils ;
out-door amusements, in separate play-grounds, having been provided in the shape of
croquet, cricket, and other games.
Parents or guardians desirous of obtaining further information, or of entering
children in the school, will please address their communications to—
R. M. Clemitson,
Secretary and Treasurer,
Boarding School, Cache Creek.
Caclyz Creek, Or, Thomas Leduc, Teacher.
r19th September, 1877.


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