Quest in Roots:
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OBERON SCHOOL DISTRICT NO. 259
The Oberon School District No. 259 was formed sometime in 1884. Records show that taxes were levied for the school that year.
The school was built on the southeast corner of 17·13·15 of Alex Ross'' farm. The trustees bought the land in 1884 and sold it back to Alex Ross in 1916. The exact date of the school''s erection is not known as the old minutes and registers have been destroyed.
With the influx of more settlers and the increase of school age children, the Freeland School District farther west was formed on May 21, 1892.
The Oberon School which was nicknamed "Bullies Acre" by the older schoolboys was then moved two miles east to the northeast corner of 10·13·15 around 1892 or 1893. In September 1893 a motion regarding land transfers between the two schools was passed by the Langford Council and approved by the Department of Education in April 1894.
Oberon School closed its doors in 1951 due to low enrollment - never to be opened again. The school had been closed previously from June 1939 to December 1944. However, the district was finally dissolved in May 1963 and transferred into Brookdale School District effective January 1, 1964.
In 1962 the old schoolhouse was sold to Gordon Reilly who moved it in November to his farm in the Hallboro district. The porch and roof were taken off before moving it. It was converted into a chicken house and the flooring into a picket fence.
For many years the school was used for church services - the Anglicans in the morning and the Presbyterians in the afternoon.
From 1957 up to the dissolution of the district - the pupils attended Hallboro and Auburn schools with tuition fees being paid plus transportation expenses for those students.
This item may interest some folks: December 1914 Oberon School Report - Mrs. Mary E. Ranson Gr. 1 Jessie Carmaichael, Hubert Alexander Gr. 2 Bessie Martin Gr. 3 Tommy Martin Gr. 4 Willie Allen, Jim Carmichael, Cecil Allen Gr. 5 Isabelle McKinnon Gr. 8 Gilbert Abbott School register of 1901 recorded a heavy snowstorm on June 6 - school closed that day. In the early 1900''s, depending on weather, the schools closed in November or December; reopened in April or May with one or two weeks holiday in July or August.
Some of the secretarytreasurers were: Alex Ross, Jack McKinnon, Findlay White, Ed Hunter, Donald Carmichael (1914·1918), Thomas A. Martin (1918·1935), Frank Batchelor (1935·1943) Dorothy Martin (1942·1950), Lloyd White (1950·1957) and W.S. Byram (1957·1963).
Following are the names of most of the teachers who taught at Oberon School: Mr. Danetree, Duncan Martin, Alice Taylor, Laura Kines, Miss Storey, Miss Fraser, Laura Hamilton, Angus Murray, Miss Langton, Ernie Barber, Jean McNabb, Maggie Craig, Ethel Walker (1911·1912), Mary Ranson (1914-1916), Mary Ferguson (1916-1917), Florence Blair (1917-1918), Eleanor Eldred (1919-1920), Freda Lottin (1920-1924), Kate Fraser (1924-1926), Marjorie Truss (1926-1927), Daisy Rhind (1927-1928), Jean McCrae (1928-1929), Bertha Hall (August to December 1929), Helen Ball (January to June 1930), Mary North (1930-1931), Ruth Faryon (1931- 1938), Dorothy Burton (1938-1939), School closed from June 1939 to December 1944. Chris Elmhirst (December 1944 to June 1945), Irma Challborn (1945-1946), Elsie Huhtala (1946-1950), Irene Woloski (1950-1951). Ella Ross (Mrs. Ernest Mack) substituted at times.
Enrollment in June 1934: Gr. A Laurence Slezak Gr. 1 Alex Carmichael, June Overbeck, Helen Slezak, Audrey White Gr.2 Alvin Huband, Jean Carmichael Gr. 3 Myrtle Overbeck, Evelyn White Gr. 4 Marion Carmichael, Jack Huband, Margaret Middleton, Stephen Slezak Gr. 5 Grace Huband, Mary Layng, Kenneth Martin, Ferne Overbeck Gr. 6 Charles Middleton, Henry Slezak Gr. 7 Don Middleton, Bessie Overbeck Gr. 9 Ruth Huband, Lloyd White Gr.lO Hazel Carmichael Grades nine and 10 were taken by correspondence.
Teacher: Ruth M. Faryon.
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