Mars School (on #317 east of Libau)

MARS S.D. NO. 1774
Submitted by slh

This school district was formed on May 2, 191,1 by an award of Arbitration. It consisted of the following lands: Sec. 3,4,5,6,7,8,9, 10, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19,20,21,28, 29, and 30 in l5-78.

The school site was on l7 15-7E and there were 46 children of school age resident within the district. The nearest school, according to the petitioners, was 6 miles
distant. The first meeting was held at the home of Carl Szczcgel of ?-15 7E. The first name proposed for the district was Ross S.D. but this was changed to read Mars.

S.D. L.J. Schalme was one of the Arbitrators appointed by the Munc. of St. Clements. Mr. A.L. Young was the inspector for the Dept. of Educ. and also served as Sec. for the Arbitration Board.

For levy of School taxes it appears that St. Clements had about 6 sections while Brokenhead Munc. had l2 in this new S.D.

ln 1938, the assessment of the S.D. in St. Clements was only $3470.00 based on 1,081 acres and by 1941 the Special Levy was increased with the mill rate up to 24 mills. This seemed a very large tax for the portion of the S.D. lying within St. Clements. This caused the Chief Administration Officer, J.P. Sigvaldson of the Dept. of
Educ. to question the financial condition of the S.D. of Mars and if they had the ability to meet the Special Levy. Mars had earlier requested special assistance in order to
pay the teacher her salary (Anna Mae Zaretsky).

Later, about June, 1942, the teacher’s salary was well in arrears and St. Clements was asked by the Dept. of Mars School Educ. to advance on the levy to meet the wages outstanding. The financial difficulties did not cease and the trustees were forced to close Mars down early during the spring of 1943.

In Aug. of 1943, the school building and the cottage both burned down. In Sept. of 1943, nothing had been done to erect a new building and by Nov. of that year
most all of the Mars S.D. children were being serf to neighboring schools.

Mr. Mike Filip and Nick Chepak approached Council saying that Libau was charging Mars $2 to $3 per month per child for attendance. The Mars residents felt they
were already being charged for school by taxation and this extra fee was a hardship and unfair. St. Clements arranged to advance monies to Libau from the MarsDistrict levy.

Then Mars was a part of another petition that went to arbitration over the boundaries. The new school building was to be placed on a new site (Sw corner of 14-15-7E).
The boundaries changed in March, 1944 by detaching 6, 7, 18, 19, 30, in l5-7E from Mars and transferring same to Libau S.D. No. 1231. Now added to Mars was NW 2, E l/2 and SW 11, and NW 12,W l12 of 13, SE 14, in l5-7E from Brokenhead S.D. No. 472. They then added SW 23, and all ol 22 in l5-7E to Mars from the Greenwald S.D. No. I160. Although this was awarded in March of 1944 it was not really effective until Jan. 1, 1945.

By the 2nd half term of 1944 they had their one-room frame school building erected and a 3-room teacher age. The trustees had authorized a dug-out cellar in which they placed an oil furnace for heating. The well for water was situated near the school in between the two buildings. The teacher age was 3 rooms (kitchen, bedroom, living
room) and the plumbing for both the teacher age and school were provided, outdoors.

The boundaries were confirmed again in 1950 and 1951 by both munc.: St. Clements land was Sec. 20,21,22,SW l/4 of 23, 28, 29, in l5-7E, while Brokenhead confirmed: Sec.3,4,5,8,9, 10, 11, 14, 15, 16, l?, and NW of Sec. 2, NW of Sec. 12, W I /2 oi 13, in tp. 15-7E.

An Award of Arbitration dated May 12, 1966 solving Mars S.D. and transferring its lands to did the Consolidated S.D. of Brokenhead No. 2436 was not approved by the Minister as a result of the Local Gov’t Boundaries Commission recommendation. However, it
did indeed come about, effective Jan. l, 1967.

Some of the Sec. Treas, over the years appear to be: Ira Stratton, at the beginning (Official Trustee) J.K. Holubowich, Wlm. Chorney, Mike Wychreschuk, James
Luchishen, Mrs. Marie Chernetsky, Sophie Chorney and Nettie Differ.

Here is a list of the teachers who taught at Mars S.D. No. 1774:

Nicholas Syroidiw 19l6-191’7
Rose A. Hambly 1917-1919
E.W. Ehman 1919-1920
John W. Morrison 1920
Mary J. Parkins 192l-1923
Elizabeth W. Ehman 1924-1928
Lydia E. Oleary 1928-1929
lsabella Frances Hall Creighton 1929-1931
Nellie Callum Rowe 1931-1934
William Mattrick 1935
Dora E. Olds 1935
Bohdan Mike Kuryk 1936-1937
Joseph H. Basarabowicz 1937 -1939
Anna Mae Zaretsky 1939-1941
Emil Joseph Borsa 194l-1942
Mrs. lsabel M. Wery 1942-1943
Helene Marie Dorosh 1944-1945
Pauline Patricia Klym 1945-1946
Miss Jeannie Therese Jablonski 1947
Alice Halipe 194’7 -1948
Pauline Patricia Klym 1948-1949
Abram Friesen 1949-1950
Paul Yurkowski 1950- 1952
Mrs. Elizabeth Pair 1952-1953
Shirley Wechreschuk 1 953- I 957
Marcella Cherko 1957- 1958
F. Ferne Eadie 1958- 1961
Joe Lesko l96l – 1963
Mary Moroz 1963-1964
Mrs. Mary Kryschuk 1964-1966

Posted in Schools.