The School District of Donald School No. 1094 was formed on Nov. 6, 1900 by an award of Arbitrators and by Feb. 4, 1901, the first public meeting for election of trustees was called resulting in Albert Anderson becoming Chairman of the Board, Donald McKay and Donald McDonald trustees with Donald McDonald filling the Sec. Treas. position. William Scott was appointed Auditor. The School district had been named in honour of Donald McDonald.
The first item of business was to post notices for the purpose of borrowing money for the purchase of a site, the building and furnishing of a schoolhouse. This was done in March l90l when a group of ratepayers instructed the Board to borrow the sum of money needed ($700.00) for the proposed school.
The school site chosen was Lot 255, in the Parish of St. Andrews within the Munc. of St. Clements.
The year 1901 was a busy year. The first teacher was a Miss Maggie McBeth and she had a large enrollment including non-resident students who were charged .50 cents per month to attend the school. They prepared for a harsh winter and one of their first purchases was a stove which they bought from Ashdown’s at a cost of $19.20. At their first annual meeting the ratepayers were advised that the first year’s operation cost them a total of $925.90.
The wood for heating was tendered and no one bid so Louis Vandal supplied 6 cords of white poplar at 92.00 per cord and he charged the school .50 cents per cord for chopping it. The next winter’s wood was supplied by Alfred Ducharme and Hans Peterson chopped it and Mrs. Peterson cleaned the school for $1.50, while Andrew Peterson was paid $5.00 for caretaking.
In 1905 approval was given to purchase: I bookcase, I globe, I map Dominion of Canada, 1 map of Manitoba. Also the school was painted and kalsomined, gate and
foot scrapers were made, and in 1907 they put up the flag pole.
The school was always overcrowded right from the beginning. However, it wasn’t until Oct. of the year 1911 that the trustees passed a bylaw for borrowing monies to enlarge the schoolhouse. Another teacher had to be hired and that winter 16 cords of wood had to be purchased to heat the extra room. (Bylaw No. 7 for borrowing $1,500.00 was passed to enlarge the schoolhouse).
In Dec. 1912 at the annual meeting, ratepayers in attendance demanded “to learn in their own language” — agreed.
The non-resident (renter’s children) fee was increased to.75 cents per month per child in the Dec. of 1913, and it was also decided to have religious exercises / teaching arranged by Ruthenian and Protestant Teacher. The
Ruthenian children to be taught Catechism by the local Ruthenian Priest while Polish children will have their Catechism conducted by the teacher.
In Jan. l9l4 the Board borrowed another $640. From the Dominion Bank in Selkirk to increase facilities. Carpenters H. Michelson and M. Debawicz built 8 more seats. The inspectors from the Dept. of Educ. had been 0ut to the school and found conditions overcrowded, not too clean and the outhouses sitting side by side. New ones were constructed and the boys placed at the opposite end of the field from the girls’ facility. The seating in the school also had to be rearranged so that the windows were on the left side of the pupils, rather than on the right side so they got the benefit of proper light. The Deputy Minister informed the Sec. Treas. that there would be no grant to the district for last term or present term until this matter was corrected, promptly.
In Aug. l9l5 non-residents fee were reduced to .50 cents per children per month, tenders were called to fence the front yard and build two new outbuildings. Mr. Mickelson did both for $18.75. In Nov. 1915, a motion was passed stating that children of the “House Renters” could no longer be accommodated due to overcrowding,
Then, that Dec. 1915, some discussion was held to build a new four-room school at Lot 226-22’7. However, this suggestion failed and it was decided to build another two room
school at the old site (Lot 225) making a total of 4 rooms in all. Also, it was decided that a wire lance around the school would be preferable.
In 1916, debentures were floated for building addition to the school ($2000) and by March 25, meeting, tenders were opened and W. Kulhuski got the job at $1,850 and
by Aug. 1916, they had to pay the contractor another $70, he underestimated. 1916 was a year that much more discussion was held about providing the teaching of the Polish and Ruthenian languages. In Dec. 1916 they needed 35 cords of wood for winter heating.
The insurance was covered by The North West Fire Ins. Co. (for $2000) from Aug. 22, l9l6to Aug.22, I9l9 for the premium of $50.00 on the one-storey frame building 24 x 40 and 10 x 12 attached building l0 x 12 (Policy No. 54151).
In April l9l7 the trustees decided to change the summer vacation period from Aug. l5 to Oct. 15, thus allowing the children free to help with harvesting and market gardening. That summer they also extended the school grounds. Approval was also given in 1917 for Mr. A.F. Haczkewicz to teach Ruthenian after 4 p.m. at a salary of $75.00 per month. 4hile F.A. Rvbak. Besides being truancy officer. was to teach the polish language after Toam mo $-85m per mdm-Jhere-Rere 130 pupils enrolled at Donald School in Oct. l9l7 and was still considered very overcrowded although more space had been provided in 1916.
Mr. E.J. Sinkewicz resigned effective Aug. 15, 1917 reason given is the school teacher Mr. Haczkewicz.
When Dr. Thornton, Hon. Minister of Education and Ira Stratton, the special school organizer, made a trip of inspection in Oct. 1917, they found the school closed up.
It had been open during June and July in order to free the kids up for field work later in the fall. In a letter dated Oct.26, 1917 from the Deputy Minister of Educ. They were very critical of the school, pointing out that school ventilation satisfactory was very and that
bad. grounds were most unsatisfactory and that things must be corrected at once.
Things more or less went from bad to worse at Donald School. However, on Nov. 10, 1917 the Asst. Deputy Minister of Educ. gave approval for night classes at Donald School for over 14 years old group who were unable to attend school during usual hours. Classes were to be held 2 or 3 nights each week of 2 hour duration — classes must be taught in English. Night School at Donald School had been in operation 4 times per week, i.e.: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday from 7 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. The subjects taught were: Reading, writing, spelling and Arithmetic. Night School Grants had been received during l9l3 up to 1917.
Great controversy arose over the resignation of J.H. Basarabowicz. Mr. J.H. Basarabowicz resigned effective Jan. 1, 1918 saying the reason was “I am unable to get
along with lr4r, Rybak, The principal. His ways at the school and outside of the school is unbearable.” (memo dated Dec. 1, 1917).
On Dec. 14, 1917, Mr. Andrew Willows was appointed Official Trustee of the Donald School. In a memo by order of the Executive Council, the school was advised to turn all cash books, minute books, bank books, seal and vouchers over to Mr. Willows, immediately. The members of the School Board were no longer in authority. Under copy of order No. 28757 dated Dec. 11, l9l7 the Hon. Minister of Educ. submitted to the Executive Council approved by the Lieutenant-Governor of the Province of Manitoba the following report.
“Two of the trustees of Donald S.D. are unable to read or write in the English language. One of the said two trustees has been acting as Sec. Treas. and is unable to keep the minutes and records for the district, as required by the Act. A petition has been signed by the remaining trustees and a large number of ratepayers, asking for the appointment of an Official Trustee for said S.D. It seems desirable and in the best interests of the district that the prayers of the petitioners be granted. On the recommendation of the Hon. Minister, Andrew Willows be appointed official trustee for Donald S.D. No. 1094
effective date of order-in-council Dec . |, 1917 .”
ln 1918, the Donald S.D. was still carrying the Debt for the old school payable in 1921 and debt for the new school payable by 1937. In 1918, May 31, l9l8 an agreement was signed between Donald S.D. and H. Peterson outlining caretaking duties.
During 1920, Mr. Willows was still official Trustee and enrollment had reached 150 and there was much talk of the need of a new school or more space. To recap the official trusteeship: In 1916, 3 unqualified teachers were teaching at Donald School — at least one spoke very imperfect English. In 1917, the two male teachers of which one was not fully qualified, were continually quarrelling. They boarded in the same house but would
not even sit down at the same table to eat their meals. One always took his meals before the other came to the table. Ratepayers were divided into two factions, one siding with Mr. Ryback the Principal, the other with Mr. Basarabouicz.
In l918 there were 2 English and I Polish teacher (born and trained in Manitoba) good work in the school – no dissatisfaction. ln 1919, 3 English teachers, rapid progress – primary pupils beginning to learn English rapidly. In 1920, 3 English teachers – progress
satisfactory – 3 meetings with ratepayers to discuss building additional classroom. Ratepayers authorized issue of debentures for $5,000. for this work. In the fall term of 1920 – 4 English teachers — good work – no trouble until outside agitation is begun. School took 83 prizes at Selkirk Fair. Oct. 1920 – Several public meetings held in Schoolhouse desk broken at one meeting.
A tender was put out by March 1920, requesting that material and work on an additional school room to be connected to the present new building on the school grounds including 2 coats of paint on the 3 present rooms. All work must be completed by Sept. 1, 1920. The building to be approximately (24 x 44).
Bylaw No. 30 was passed authorizing the borrowing of $5,000 al 7Vo per year, and issuing of debentures for purposes of building and equipping a 4th room to the present Donald Schoolhouse.
The votes were summed up on Sat. May 8, 1920 and by May 14, the news media were able to report “the municipality of St. Clements is really growing as far as school children are concerned as an extra room is being added to the Donald School.”
Not only was a fourth classroom to be built but 2 of the old ones were to be repaired and brought up to standard.
As Mr. Willows said in a Report to the Deputy Minister on March 6, 1920, “for the sum of $5000 a second classroom is to be added to the present one-room school. The old building is to be repaired and several alterations are to be made. Two modern outbuildings have to be put up and the grounds fenced and buildings painted. ”
The budget was $2400 in 1914.
A new agreement dated Aug. 13, 1920, was signed between Peter Piwarchyk and A. Willows for Janitorial Services for Donald School at $40.00 per month for 192011921. To light fires and keep a supply of firewood on hand in the rooms, to sweep and dust daily, fresh supply of drinking water in classrooms daily, keep outhouses clean during the year, to scrub floor at least 4 times during the year, and woodwork at least once, make all small repairs of school furniture, fences, gates, window, outhouse, etc., material to be supplied by S.D.
By July 25, 1921, the official Trustee was advising Mr. Piwarchuk that the ratepayers have the right to use the schoolhouse during the year for public meetings etc., free
of charge. Their families and teachers have permission at any time during the year to use school. You are authorized to open the doors for them. They are to supply oil for the lamps and to be responsible for any damage.
ln Jan. 1925, a new janitor Contract was drawn up between Donald S.D. and Charles Maleszdrewicz for $29.00 per month for 10 months.
The boundaries of the Donald school were readjusted on Sept. 2, 1930 by bylaws No. 411 of the munc. of St. Clements to consist of the inner and outer 2 miles of Lots 215 to 288, inclusive in the Parish of St. Andrews.
The Deputy Minister, R. Fletcher, in June 1931 wrote to the Sec. Treas. of Donald School (Andrew Peterson) warning him that teachers should be provided with residence (furnished) accommodations. You have reduced their wages — this is OK – but the teachers must be treated fairly. He was warned that the Dept. could again place an official Trustee, at very short notice, in charge of the school. The school must show people proper consideration for their staff.
On Nov. 11, 1933, Roman Kosakewich received the sum of $5 for sawing l0 cords of wood at 50 cents a cord and on Nov. 2’7, 1933, Roman received $12.48 for hauling the wood from Gonor CNR to Donald School, 32 cords at .32 cents per cord. David Muzychka received $12.80 for sawing 32 cords of wood at 40 cents a cord.
The Donald School (River Lot 255) was destroyed by fire in Dec. 1946. It was insured by policies No.31195 and 30970 through the Portage la Prairie Mutual Ins. Co.
The boundaries of Donald S.D. No. 1094 was confirmed by bylaw No. 1207 of the munc. of St. Clements as at Nov. 14, 1950 as being River Lots 215 to 288 inclusive
in the Parish of St. Andrews and the outer 2 miles of lots 215 to 288.
By-law No. 1-56 of Donald School was submitted to a vote of the people on Fri. April 20, 1956, and passed by a majority of 140 in favor, to only 30 against same. The bylaw authorized the Donald S.D. to create a debenture debt of $39,000 for the purpose of building and equipping a new three-room school with auditorium convertible to an extra classroom, if necessary, at an estimated cost of $45,000, the balance of the cost over and above the proceeds from the debenture issue to be met from reserve funds of the district, the said sum of $39,000 to be recovered by a special tax levied over a period of 20 years with interest at the rate of 4 | 12Vo per annum upon all ratable lands situated within the Donald S.D. The debentures shall be payable in 20 equal payments of $2,998.17 each due on Dec. 1, of each year.
Notices were posted calling for tenders for purchase and removal of the old Donald School Building (South) ’72’ x 24′ frame construction situated on River Lot 255 (Henderson Hwy.) tenders closed May 2, 1956.
A special Joint Committee of Ward I residents of St. Clements and Donald S.D. ratepayers met in a meeting in Dec. 1959 and voted unanimously to succeed from the
R.M. of St. Clements and be annexed to the R.M. of East St. Paul. They agreed to complete formal petition and present it to East St. Paul. Mr. F.A. Wachal was chairman and B. Gaynor was Sec.
On Feb. 9, 1960 Amy Corham, Sec. Treas. of the R.M. of East St. Paul wrote to Mr. Frank Wachal: “We wish to advise, regarding attendance at our Council meeting
Jan. 11, 1960 of your committee requesting seceding of Donald S.D. No. 1094 from the R.M. of St. Clements and becoming a part of the R.M. of East St. Paul, that this is being given serious consideration and we will advise you further at a later date. ”
A further memo was written to Frank Wachal on April 16, 1960 which stated: “Further to our letter of Feb. 9, 1960 Council does not feel the annexation of part of the R.M. of St. Clements to this munc. would be advisable and therefore the request submitted by your committee has not been approved.”
The Donald School D. No. 1094 was dissolved effective April l, 1967 and all lands were transferred to the River East School Division No.9 which was declared a division within the meaning of Sec. 443 of the PSA by order of the Minister dated March 11 1967.
Therefore, the River East School Division boundary extends north up to Church Rd. and Henderson Hwy. and they share this common boundary with the Lord Selkirk S.D. No. 11. For example every school child living on the North side of Church Rd. is bussed north to L.S.S.D. schools while students living on the south side of Church Rd. are bussed south to River East S.D. No. 9.
The River East S.D. turned the Donald School building and property over to the Munc. of St. Clements who in turn leased it to the Narol Community Centre where it served the needs of the Narol residents. During the last few years the Narol Knights of Columbus Council No. 6637 have assumed the responsibility for the building and are coordinating activities at the centre under their able sponsorship. The Narol Senior Citizen group rent space, as do the Narol Children’s Centre (Day Care Nursery).
The Knights’ story as well as the Seniors’ brief write-up 221 are included in this book else where. Here is a list of teachers who taught at Donald school over the years:
Maggie McBeth l90l-1902
Miss Certie M. Whilley 1903
Jacob T. Norquay 1903
Hugh W. Keele 1904
Jacob L Norquay 1905
Louisa J. Irvins 1905-1906
Wm. F.P. Bradley 1906-1907
Elspeth M. Craig 1908
Wrn. Bladley 1908
E$el Scort 1908-1909
Janet McBeth 1910
John Bybek l9l I
A.H. Dielenkeirch 1912
J.M. Dybek l9l2 1913
W.J. Mushynski l9l2 l9l3
A.J. Haczkiewicz l9l3
M. Styrska l9l3-1914
A.F. Haczkiewicz 1914-1915
W. Henchart l9l4
A.J. Basarabowicz l9l5
Stephen B. Wolanczyk l9l5-1916
H.F. Haczkiewicz l9l6
F.A. Ryback l9l6- l9l?
A.F. Haczkiewicz l9l6
H.S. Hawecki l9l6
Emilia L. Dybisz l9l7-1919
A.F. Hackkiwick 1917
J.H. Basarabowicz l9l7
Kalherine E. Smythe l9l8-1927
F. HazeL Charles l9l8
E.R. Mccurdy l9l8
Agnes R. Connelly l9l9-1920
Mamie Cassidy 1920 1921
Valerie Moray 1920
Mary H. Johnson 1920
Ethel Zokman l92l
Valede Moran l92l
Isabel Campbell I921-1922
Catherine Craig l92l -1923
Ivy Stevenson l92l-1923
J€an Carey 1923-1926
Alice Airkin 1923 1925
Rozann Carey 1923
Lillian E. Pearlman 1924 1925
l\’larie Eaves 1925 1926
Minnie Lurey 1925-1926
Mabel Edith Payne 1926-1928
Sophie Cherry 1926-1929
Jonina Sumarlidason 1926
Frank A. Wachal 1927
Anne J. Mowat 1927-1929
Jonina Sumariidason 1927- 1929
Dorothy McDermott 1929
Ann Vincelette 1929-1930
Audrey Thompson 1929-1930
Cleo Clark 1929-1932
Sophie Shibou 1930-1931
Kathleen Tersa King 1930-1936
lrank Alexander Wachal l93l – l94l
Leon Rudolph Olesczuk 1932-1946
Helene Dojack 1932-1934
John Lewis Semeniuk 1934-1935
Libby Elizabeth Marek 1936-1941
Bessie B. Olson 1941-1942
Mrs. H. Schroeder 1942
Mary Hrenchuk 1942 1943
L. Schroeder 1942
Kathleen Marion Connolly 1943
Mary P. Boyko 1943
Rae Isabelle Ellis 1943-1945
Florence May Baker 1944
Mary Uranick 1944- l94J
Blanche Florence Leveque 1945-1946
lna Constance Hawkins 1945-1947
Manuel Peter Tanchuk 1947-1949
Berith Williams 1947-1949
Anne Zubachek 1947-1949
Kathleen lsabelle Henderson 1948
John Prokipchuk 1949’1952
Berith Semeniuk 1949 1950
Mrs. Helen Jean C. Turner 1950-1952
Mrs. Jessie Behon 1952-1956
Mr. Wlm. Solypa 1952-1954
Mr. Metro Michalchuk 1954-1955
John Petrash 1955- 1956
Mrs. Berith Semeniuk 1956- 1963
Julia Rich 1956-1959
Simon Nimchuk 1956-1957
Marie M. Hryhor 1956
Morris M. Hryhor 1957
Michael Rehaluk 1957- 1958
Nicholas Andrusko 1958-l 959
J.E. Lalchun 1959-1963
maurice N. Peleshok 1959-1963
Sharon A. Chanas 1963-1965
Mr. A. Mikolayenko 1963-1964
Peler P. Smolarski 1964-1966
Leona Buyarski 1964
Arthur Bueckert 1965
Sharron Bodie 1965-1966
Mrs. P. Buchalter 1965-1966
Wasyl Sokolyk 1965-1966
Judith Hanson 1966
Joanne Raw 1966
Submitted by slh.