Extracts from the Auchterhouse School Board
Numbers of children - 1873
There were 165 children between the ages of 5 and 13 in the parish - 90 boys and 75 girls.
141 of them attended school (79 boys, 62 girls). However, 24 were not attending (11 boys, 13 girls)
Nine children were not attending school. An officer was instructed to call and request attendance or proceedings would be taken against them.
In 1888 there were 110 pupils on the role.
In 1892 there were 99 on the school role
Auchterhouse Female Public School - 16 March 1875
"We are disappointed with the appearance made by this little school. The number of failures is very great especially in arithmetic. The general intelligence and meaning of words are only fair and the Higher Subjects are weak generally.
The school is altogether unnecessary and unsuitable. The building is inferior in every way and badly ventilated.
The situation is very unsuitable and apparently unhealthy. The offices are very inconveniently situated and there is no playground obtainable. Adequate accommodation ought to be at once provided in the principal School distant about 50 yards and all the staff properly organised with a proper division of labour set to work there.
The Board must at once bestir themselves and make sufficient provision for the education in the Parish."
Auchterhouse Public School
"This school made on the whole a very creditable appearance, considering that the staff is not sufficient for the numbers. The penmanship is worthy of mention as being very good."
The School Board immediately made plans to extend the Public School to incorporate Female School.
JAMES SPENCE late Schoolmaster
7 August 1813 Aged 59
His mind was active and capacious, deeply imbued with knowledge ornamental to himself, and highly useful to society. He was a pleasant companion, a warm friend, an honest man and a sincere Christian. He discharged the duties of his office with skill, temper and fidelity. He regulated the passions, expanded the intellects, and improved the hearts of those under his tuition. This monument is erected by his grateful pupils.
In 1886 a member of the School Board complained of:
This was supported by Mr Valentine, Mansion House who suggested the proportion of pauper children was in excess of those in the Parish and therefore proving detrimental to the morals of the natives and the amenity of the village as a summer resort.
They were elected for 3 years. Responsibilities included: Appointment of teachers, prosecution of parents for not sending their children to school, carrying out repairs to the school, carrying out changes the School Inspectors suggested/demanded.
Who was on the School Board?
Here is a list of members of the Board in 1888.
|William Cochrane||tailor||Kirkton of Auchterhouse|
||Kirkton of Auchterhouse|
|Alexander McKay Jun.||farmer||East Mains|
|James Playfair||landed proprietor||Eastfield|
|Andrew Whitton||landed proprietor||Couston|
1873 School fees were as follows:
|Reading||10d per month|
|Reading/writing/arithmetic grammar and geography||1s 8d|
In 1885 school fees were reduced
|Standard III||1s 2d|
|Standard IV - VI||1s 4d|
Children were charged 1s each a year for coal for the classroom and 1d per month for pen and ink.
1873 Mr Robertson, Schoolmaster had a salary of £50 annually. He also received £3.3s for collecting the school rate, which was set at £120 for the parish of Auchterhouse, plus some of the school fees.
Mr Robertson's salary was raised to £65 in lieu of the reduction in school fees.
No fees were charged after October 1889. This meant a difference of £44 to Mr Robertson which was made up to him in an increase in salary.
There were still fees for Standard VI pupils.
In 1873 Miss Forrest received £15 annually as teacher of the Female School. When she resigned on Dec 27 1873 the following advert appeared in the Dundee Courier on Monday 29th and Friday 2nd January 1874:
There were only two applicants. The post was advertised again at a salary of not less than £60. Miss Mills was appointed in February 1874.
Miss Mills resigned Dec 1875. The new teacher was to be under the supervision of the Teacher of the Public School. A salary of £45 was at first advertised but no one applied so it was raised to £60 with the result that there were 14 applicants from whom a Miss Hay, Aberdeen, was appointed.
The former Female schoolhouse was fitted up as a dwelling house for the female teacher.
A bad working relationship
Arrangements for putting the Female teacher under supervision of Public School teacher Mr Robertson did not work well. There were professional disagreements between them.
The School Board planned to make two separate schools within one building. Mr Robertson wrote to them offering
Despite this relations between Miss Hay and Mr Robertson remained cool and she resigned in August 1881.
There were 52 applicants for the job at £50 and Miss Scott was appointed Female teacher.
Tragic month for Mr Robertson, headmaster
On 19 November 1890, it was noted in the School log book that the school had been closed since 13 November owing to the death of the teacher's only son, John.
26 November 1890 - school closed owing to the death of Elizabeth, the master's elder daughter.
6 July 1900 - School closed owing to the death this morning, of the master's only surviving daughter, Jeanie.
27 January 1893 - buns and organges were distributed among the scholars on the occasion of the master's completion of twenty five years service in this school.
Holiday in honour of the Queen and the completion of the sixtieth year of her reign. Medals in the form of a Maltese Cross were distributed to the scholars in honour of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee, and intimation given that they would be entertained at a picnic on the hill tomorrow afternoon.
Searching for former pupils?
A database of pupils attending Auchterhouse School between 1872-1900 has been compiled. If you wish to see whether a particular individual attended the school please email Linda Caston with the details of your request.