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... RHONDDA SCHOOL BOAKD.!'

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RHONDDA SCHOOL BOAKD. THE C jlIING ELECTION PROTEST A-VIN5T THE RETURNING OFFICERS' ACTION. A P&SCEPT OF L15,0". I FAREWELLS AND TEARS. TIIG last MOCTALY meeting of the Rhondda Seirjo1 Bood aa at. present constituted vas held at the Council Offices, Pentre, on Monday, the Chairman, Mr T. Bevan, presiding-. TK-rf were also present Rev W. Morris (vice-chair- man), Rev W Lev/is. Rev Thomas Williams, ¡ Rev W. Charles, Miss Ada J owes, Messrs D&B2. Thomas, John Da.vies. Henry Abraham, David Williams, D. R. Jones, with the clerk, Mr W. G. Ho wells, The Building Committee reported The archi- tect r--ports- hat with the exception of tie renewal of a few panes of glass broken in the old wing, the whole of the rooms in the upprr floor of the Treherbert Beys' School are ready for occupation, and that the Manual Trair.irg Room will be r7-ady for occupation on Monday next, but the outside work will take another fortnight to complete. In accordance with the instructions of the Beard we have visited three suitable sitec upon which a higher grade and science school might Ita erected at Ystrad, and we recommend that the dcrk be instructed to ascertain whether an acre of ground situate on the Maindy Field the end of Maindf road can be had, and if 50a, upon what 'bern t. Should the tite be not available, we r"mmend that the clerk be in- tructed to inquire whothe3r one of the ether two Bites, viz., the oi» adjoining St. David's Chnrch and tihe other behind the Ton boys* and girls' ooL i available, and if yea, upon what terms. On the motion of Mr David Williams, tfce rcpoct was adopted. Tr the report of the Attendance Otrmnit.e appeared the following: We have received replies from Ae teachers of the Trealaw and Penygraig schools to the communications sent to them in reference to the tow attendance at those schools ia June last. Various causes are assigned such 13 (a) inadequacy of staff, b) local attractions, excursions, Sunday School treats, etc., (') indifference of parents and pre- valence of diphtheria. We have had before us a communication ad- dressed to tho Cfcairman of the Board by Mr S. Edwards, Mardy, calling attention to the fact that children betveen three and four years of age are crowded out of the Mardy Infants' School. We. t.h.k that the time has now ar- rived when steps should be taken to provide at that school additional accommodation for rot less than 60 children, and we recommend that it be an instrui^tion to the Building Committee to submit jilanj Showing how such additional accommodation can be best provided. We havo receive! a special report from H.M. Inspector on premises of the Pentre school, in which the niicaber on books largely exoeod < the accomnKKiaition in ail three departments, I while the averse attendance n the bcye and girls' departments shows serious overcrowding. We recommend that the communication be re- ferred to the Building Committee for considera- tion. and report, with the ion that the Old Higher Grade school premises be utilised cm an infants' sdhool for the lower part. The average attendance during the month ended September 22nd was 77.8 as compared with 80.3 last month, and 81 per cent. during the corresponding period of last year. The recommendations of the committee were agreed to. to The Sdrool Management Committee reported that the following teachers have declined to I accept appointments offered to them:—Mor- gan Evans, certificated assistant for Dunraven Boys'; S. Jervis, certificated assistant, for Llwynypia Mixoo; William O. Jones, certifica- ted assistant for Mardy Boys, and W. Griffiths, certificated assistant for Pontrhondda Mix, -1 We have received the resignations of the follow- ing teachers, and recommend their acceptance: I G. V. Burgess, sijpernumerary (Boys'), J, Berry eertif-cated assistant, Trealaw Boys': Margaret ¡ Tho«ias, ex-pupil teacher, Porth Girls'; Emily Williams, ex-pupil teacher, Ferndale Infants'; We have received an application from Mrs S. Beynon, Fishguard, for an appointment as cer- tificated adsififcan! Having regard to her pre- vious long experience under this Board, w» -e- commend that :flie be appointed as certified ed assistant for Porth Sirls' School at the man- etium salary of the Scale ( £ 80). We reco a- ■end that the following transfer be made: Mary Parker, assistant ex-pupil teacher, from Pontygwaith Infants' to Ferndale Infan;q Megan Jonas, assistant ex-pupil teacher. t're n Cymmer Infante, to Pontygwaith Infant'- Amelia Lewis, Lit year pupil teacher, from W: Kamstown Infants to Cymmer Infants'. Ws recommend that application be made to H.M. 1 Inspector to bold a special examination for La- bour Certificate early is December next. Adverting to the resolution passed by the Board at the last meeting to establish Ilighar Grade Centres for Standards VI. and V.1 at Treherbert, Tonypandy, and Porth, we now beg to recommend as follows:—That the Treher- bert Higher Grade Centre shall form a de-art- ment of the Troherbert Boys' School und?.- the charge of Mr M. O. Jones, and that the at- tendance at that department stall count to- the purposes of his salary, according to the scale now in force; that the Tonypandy Higher Grade Centre ahail form a department of the Tonypandy mixed school under the charge of Mr J. W. Juneg, and. that the attendance at that department ahali count for the purpose* of his salary, according to the soale for mixed schools now in force. The following r; ;orraaenda tion was referred to the new Boo.d, That the Porth Higher Grade Cemtre be Ofesed in temjiorary premises simultaneously with the Trefeerbert and Tonypandy Centres, and th, the looaJ members and tl, Clerk be refl uest 1 to Ii :l accommodation. We uavo received the annual reports on the Tstrad Higher Grade and Penygraig Schools, and be. to append tha fellowing particulars: — ery. Total. ••■5. d. s. d. ie. 1. t a. d Xstwd H.<1. 32 S Vi> 6 64 6 1) 17 9 Feny-i¡r .212: ::1 t\ 170 2 2 0 H 0 ^"3 13 9 I We recommend tnat the following appoint- ments be made —David Morgan Hughes, Ynys- hir, as assistant ex-P.T. for Ynyswen Boys' School, wiary according to Scale (£50 to £70. by 12 10b annually; Mary Francis, Cwmpark, as teach ;■ under Article 68 for Park Wantle School (temporarily). Salary, £30 per annum. Eve Jennies, Treala-w. as teacher under Article 68 for Cwmclydach IfiHants' School; salary, P.30 per annum. The report was adopted. The Evening Continuation School Committee in their report stated that the expenditure in respect of the evening schools for the year ended 30th April, 1309, was J6939 Us lid, the total income beinj £ 537 6s 2d; total from rates, £ -K)2 13s 9d. They liad received a communication from Mr S. head-mas ter of the Pontrhondda mixed school, applying for permission to open an evering school at and stating that 23 men anl 20 women had signified their intention of attending. They recommended that the application be granted, and that Mr Davies be appointed head-master. The following assistant teachers were appoin- ted -Blaenrholldda, Mary Davies; Dunraven, G. 1. Thomas; Treyherbert, Owen E. Davies; Park, H. Prosser; Treorky, E. J. Price; Pen- tre, Jonathan Rees; Ton,, W. E. Davies, i). Jenkins, and E. Treherne; Bodringallt, Eliza- beth Price and Thomas Jones; Llwynypia, j Edith M. Glass. Diana Lewis, John Griffiths, J. S. Harterre, and Gomer Evans; Cwmclyd- ach, E. M. Collins, E. Benjamin, and D. E. Griffiths; Ynyshir, John Price; Pontygwaith, David Williams; Tylorstown, William Edwards, Ferndale, G. J. Parry, D. L. Williams, Owen J. Owens, and John Gale; Mardy, L. Blackwell and W. D. Thomas; Porth, Thomas Davies; Hafod, Lizzie Evans and G. Thomas; Cym- mer, Mary A. Jones. The returns for the two weeks ended 22nd Sept. shewed the very substantial increase of 483 on books, and 410 in average attendance as compared with the returns for the correspond- ing period of last year.—This Report was adop- ted. CATCHING TOTES. An application was received from the Ystrad Glee Society for the use of a schoolroom on Sunday for choir practices from 4.30 to 5.30. It was explained that the Board's regulations did not allow it. The Rev W. Lewis moved that permission be given. Rev W. Morris peinted out that the present constitution of the regulations would have te be altered. Rev W. Lewis: They get blfe sdaool at this hour at Pentre. Rev W. Morris: Yots will have to suspend the staading orders. If you like I will do so for The present. Rev W. Lewis: Alright. I think they should get it. Rev W. Charles said that 12 moatha ago a similar application was received, but it was then generally refused although personally he was in favour of it. It should not be rushed now with a view to catching votes. The Chairman: I think that insinuati a is uncalled for. Rev W. Lewis: Twelve months ago they ap- plied for the schools1 free of charge. This is another application. Rev W. Charlea: I supported it then and am not opposed to this now, only I doa> see that it should be done before the election. I protest against it. The Chairman Do you move an amendment? Rev W. Charles: No, but I think the matter should be left for the new Board. The Chairman: A3 usual don't raise your hands and then oppose a motion. Rev W Charles: I object to that assertion when you are in Jit: < Lair Chairman: You are making an assertion that we are paasing this with a view to catching votes. Rev. W. Charles: I say that 12 months ago an application was made by this choir for the school and was then almost generally rejected by the Board. I don't think this important matter ought to be coasidered before the new Fk ard meets. Mr John Davies said that Mr Charles was referring to the deputation who waited upon the Board last year and asked for the school free of charge and not for an alteration in the the rules, on the grounds that it was educat- ion, and upon those grounds the Board re- fused. Fev W. Lewis reminded Mr Charles that the Board had already granted the use of its school on Sunday The resolution was then passed, Mr Charles still considering the motion one co catch votes. ECHOES OF THE HAFOD DISPUTE. A letter was read t'rom the Clerk of the Pont- ypridd School Board forwarding two copies f t » agreement respecting the Hafod Schools dispute and asking the Board to seal it and return it. The cheque for the arrears would be forwarded after the next Board meeting. The agreement was sealed as re- quested. THE OOMING ELECTION. The Education Department wrote that in view of the fact that the Returning Officer was unable to state that he considered that ,-d,litiona number of polling stations desired by the Board to be necessary, the Department was bound to adhere to its de- cision and decline 10 sanction the additional stations. The Clerk remarked that he had been in- structed to ask for 28 booths. Rev W. Morris thought tiiac in justice to ;the present Board that matter ought to be clearly stated. The Board was blamed by "lIrions parties for the arrangements of booths but it was evident the blam-e dil not rest with them because as far back as July 14th the matter CaTne. before the consideration of the Finance Committee who b;1.,J before them a report from the assistant overseer with regard to the 'airrangemert of pdlling booths. Bbe Finance Committee went into the matter thor- oughly and recommerjied tha- the'clerk should v communicate the r^vi-non of the arrangements to the Education Department to have 28 booths instead of 21 aa before. That let- ter was communicated to the Department and also to Mr Spicke'J: the returning Officer. The matter was before the Board afterwards and they saw now oy the Ioirter that the re- turning Officer was solely responsible for the ikiw)ls of the arrangements. He did not take n their request for revision, and the reply from the Department showed that he did not it. L was a scandalous shame a Board reprjsar.ci" 130,000 ratepayers (t..ie1 be managed by au absentee official. He nstsnced cases where ratepayers had to walk a di.-r.ar-r*: from their district to vote. Ii1 many cases it would be ia?poss- :bla for the presiding officer to man- ? the booths especially in the evening when the bulk of the people came to vote. Had the retarnitiz officer seconded their applic ition it would have been confirmed. They shot d pro- test against the system and change the ano- D aly, Te thought they should endeavour to arrange, that the clerk of the District Council or School Board should aot as returning officer u tead of the cierfc of the Guardians, in fact, to have home rule for themselves. He moved that they protest against the action of the returning officer in not sanctioning the increased num- ber of polling booths which the Board consider- d inadequate. The resolution he moved was "We emphat- ically protest against the inadequacy of the pooling booths arrangements for the coming School Board election, wherein Cwmpark, lfafod and Blaenrhomlda are unprovided, and :m excessive number crowded into the larger central booths, and further express our in- dignation at the conduct of the Returning Offi- cer in not supporting the application of the Board to the Education Department and that the clerk communicate this to the Returning Officer and to the secretary of the Depart- ment." Mr Henry Abraham seconded. Ia Hafod the ratepayers believed it was the fault of the local members, who were blamed for not having a beoth there. If it happe.ed to be a wet day malty of the voters would not walk to Cymmer where the booth was. M' John Davies said the number of booths now would be nearly the same as that proposed ty the Board. He understood there would be two booths in Cymmer schools; but he could not see why one of them should not be put at Hafod. From this he gathered the cost would be very little less than if the number asked for had been granted. The booths would now be cxeicrowded, for from his experience he found no presiding officer dould possible deal with more than one voter per minute. Rev W. Morris: And according to our ar. rangements there would be 750 per booth. We must agitate for a change. The resolution was Hnaniniously carried. Mr D. R. Jones said there were 17 pupils at Dunraven desirous of forming an evening school r and he moved that permission be given to form mixed evening classes there, and at all schools where necessary.—This was agreed to. FINANCE. The Finance Committee recommended pay- ments of accounts amounting to £3,610 in the general account and L253 in the loa* account. After that day's payments there would be a eredit balance of £ 5,656. The estimate of re- ceipts and expenditure for the next half-year was submitted, and a precept issued fer £12,11"0, equivalent to a rate of 6.38. in the jB. Mr Daniel Thomas, chairman of the Finance Committee, gave a comparison of the items under tha heads of income and expenditure fet the last three years. The expenditure was: Half-year ended March, 1897, £ 2Sr,816; Septem- ber, 1897, £ 26,584; March, 1898, £ 24,276; Sep- tember, 1898, £ 27,310; March 1899, £ 31,172. The receipts for the corresponding periods were £ 16,325; £ 35,507 -921,484; £ 33,198; 416,517; and LR,M. In the estimate now submitted increases were shown in teachers' salaries to the extent of £ 2,000, due to the fact that the Board had adopted a new scale and partly by reason of the automatic ad*nce in the salaries of teachers working towards their maximum. There was aso a considerable increase in the number of certificated teachers employed by the Board. During the term of the Board new schools had been opened at Pontrhondda, Dinas, Ferndale Science School, Llwyncelyn, and Blaenycwm. Existing schools had also beea improved to meet the requirements, and this had entailed the borrowing of £ 22,918, the addi- tional accommodation represented by the out- lay being £ 2,290. The school-rate during the term had been: March, 1897, 5.9d. in the £ September. 1897, 7.1-1; M^rch, 1898, 6.8d.; September, 1898, 5.7d; March, 1899. 6.1d; Sep- tember, 1899, 6.3d. The mean rate for the six half-years was 6.3d., and that for the two last half-years had practically been the same, al- though, owing to the late strike, the rateable value was reduced by £ 45,264. He thought, therefore, the Board could claim to have carried out its administrative duties with due regard to economy and emciency. That Board compared very favourably with some of the largest Boards in South Wales. The rates in the following districts were: Cardiff, 7.6d.; Swansea, 15.9d.; Barry, 14.25d.; Llanwonno, 12.75d.; Merthyr, 12.4d; Llanelly, 16.75d.; Bedwellty, 36.5d; and Ystradyfodwg, 12.5d. Cardiff had a rateable value of £1,013,000, and only 24,000 children to educate, but the Rhondda had to educate 22,000 children on a rateable value of £ 462,000. In Jtme, 1896, the total grants earned by the Rhondda. Board was E15,551, or an average of 19s 0.4d. per head; in 1899 it had reached Llg.910, or El Is per head. The grant this year also shewed an increase of 7.1d per head over 1898. This state of affairs was satisfactory to all concerned. Under the Poor School Board Act that parish received in Maroh, 1897, £ 861; March, 1898, 93,518, and March, 1899, 93,562. "Blessed are the poor and needy, for they shall receive much." (Laughter). In oonclu- sion he thought it was a matter for congratu- lation that in spite of the ever increasing re- quirements of the Department both as regards buildings and staffing, as well as in other re- spects, and notwithstanding also the great re- duction in the rateable value owing to the late strike, the Board was now in a position to hand over its trust to its successors with a sub- stantial working balance to start lift with, and with a provision made for carrying them safely through the coming half-year without increas- ing the rate and with the prospects of a balance ( on the rig-bt side at the end of that period. In view of those facts he thought they might con- fieiently appeal to their constituents for a re- newal o< their tnist. (Hear. hear). The Chairman remarked that a local paper last week referred to the Board as not being a very bad one. That meant it was not a very good one. He did not think that statement was justified, considering what the Board had done during the last three years. Taking every- thing into' consideration, he thought the Board would compare favourably with any other Board. Of course, they had not revolutionised everything, but there had been steady progress during the last three years. They had multi- plied the number of their schools, and their teachers, but the cost per head to the rate- payers would compare favourably with other bodies. During the last three years the Board had completed buildings and made great extensions to the tune of £ 55,000. In addition they had erected telephones, started manual training schools, engaged two extra teachers for cookery, and paid zC2,500 to the Llanwonno Dcall for the old schools, and that also inclu- ded the cost of arbitration. They had in- creased the salaries of the assistant teachers, which amoupted to nearly ZESOO, and were still increasing. The cost per head had been in 1895, lis 9.7d; 1896, 13s 6d; 1897, 13s 6.2d; 1898, lis 7.6d; 1899, lis 10.8d, and this not- withstanding the fact that they had multiplied the schools, teachers, and apparatus as well. In 1896, when the Board took office, the number of children on book was 20,215, to-day it was 22,000. So they had educated 2,000 extra child- ren at no extra cost to the Beard. They had also educated a number of Pontypridd children at Hafod for nothing, and then they had on the agenda certain very important inovem-,its dealing with the Pupil Teachers' Centre, and several Higher Gmde Schools. With h. se things in view he thought they were ent.,tl..i to be called a proficient board. They had." ly ccntinued the good work of the previous n, and, although it might seem egotisticaj to say ..o, from the chair, he could say that th pre- a-nt Board had been worthy of their pred .s- sors. (Hear, hear). Rev W. Morris thought the Board had a duty to perform before dispersing, and thai was to tender the best and sincere thanks of the Board to the chairman for his conduct while in the chair. All the members were satisfied with the manner in which he had conducted the business of the Board during his term of office, and all hoped to see him a member of the new Board. (Hear, hear). Rev W. Lewis seconded, and paid a tribute to the courtesy and patience which hac, charac- terised the chairman's actions while in the chair. He referred to his faithfulness and regularity in attending the meetings. He thanked the chairman for his kindness on the occasion of the opening of the Ferndale Higher ttrade School when they had an opportunity of meeting Sir George Kekewich. Whoever might be members of the new body he trusted the chairman would be one. The chairman returned thanks, and said he had tried to be as impartial as possible, and he now thanked the members for the courtesy they had shown him. He then proposed a. vote of tbanks to the vice-chairman (Rev W. Morris), who was one of the most active and progressive members of the Board. They greatly apprecia- ted the services he had rendered to the Board and the cause of education. Mr D. R. Jones seconded, and spoke in high terms of the attainments of the Rev W. Mor- ris, whose appointment as chairman of the BiLptieW Unioa, he said, was a great honour. Votes ef thanks were also accorded to the clerk, Miss Jones, architect, and members of the Press, after which the members sorrowfully dispersed, each wondering whether he would see the other back after the election. A general holiday wiH be sriven to all the scholars under the Board on Friday.

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