Report of School Visitations - DeWitt:  1870

SOURCE: The Clinton Weekly Herald, April 16, 1870

Office of Sup't of Com. Schools, Clinton, April 1, 1870

March 22, 23 and 25th -- Visited Independent School District of DeWitt.  City of DeWitt High School department -- Mr. C. Robinson, Principal, Miss Harriet Peck, Assistant.  Average number belonging, 46.  Deportment correct.  The method of teaching indicates a perfect knowledge of the branches taught, an agreable [sic], illustrative, analytical, and systematic mode of educating, which has attained a degree of perfection seldom found in our Public Schools.

FIRST -- Grammar department, Miss Ellen R. Shephard, Teacher, average number belonging, 34.2: deportment, orderly.  This department is conducted in a manner creditable to the high reputation of the school, and Miss S., is evidently in the right place, and duly appreciated by the patrons, many of whom, honored the school with their presence during the closing term.

SECOND -- Grammar department, Miss Addie Burch, teacher, average number belonging, 34.4: deportment good.  This department is well conducted, and teacher and pupils interested.

First Intermediate department, Mrs. C. E. James, teacher.  Average number belonging, 40; deportment decorous.  The pupils in this department are well instructed, many of whom merit, and have received promotion.

Second Intermediate Department.  Miss M. E. Mathews, teacher.  Average number belonging, 44.5; deportment good, considering the active brain, and nervous temperament of the pupils attending.  This department is in the hands of an energetic teacher, and the pupils of a class that are bound to excel.

FIRST PRIMARY DEPARTMENT -- Mrs. M. H. Wilson, teacher, average number belonging, 75; deportment commendable.  This department is in charge of an able and practical teacher, and is conducted in a superior, interesting, and attractive manner, and those pupils taught by Mrs. W., are most fortunate and sharp enough to know it.

SECOND PRIMARY DEPARTMENT -- Miss Eveline Bissel teacher.  Average number belonging, 42.6; deportment good, method of teaching pleasing, and attractive.  Pupils interested, and although anxious for promotion, dislike to leave their kind, and competent instructress.

These schools are so organized, that the Principal can tell whether the pupils of each department are present, the punctuality, and scholarship of each, and truancy is known and detected, almost as soon as it occurs.  Only the very best of teachers are employed, and held to a strict account, not only for the condition of their rooms, but for the deportment and scholarship of each pupil, and the entire organization is perfect and complete.

The School Board is composed of men of intelligence and enterprise, and give due attention to the businesss, as evinced by their frequent visitation of the Schools.  The School Building is one of the most substantial, and imposing structures in the city, and was built in 1867, at a cost of about $20,000.  Its entire seating capacity is about 400, and each room is furnished with a good Clock, Thermometer, and all useful and necessary apparatus for illustrating the different branches taught, and a fine Organ in the High School room, discourses appropriate music, when occation requires.  The most noticable feature, and the result of order is, that no marks, scratches, or defacements of any kind, are found on any of the seats, desks, or walls of the building, or out-buildings, all are kept neat and clean.  The play ground is ample, and laid off with fine gravel walks, and set with shade trees, which time will form into beauty, and usefulness.

The citizens of DeWitt need not emigrate for the education of their children, and the Yankee of the East, seeking a Western home, can find at the Public Schools in this City, the educational shrine, at which he loves to worship.

R. B. Millard, Superintendent.