Wednesday, April 21, 2010


The only alienation in the population seemed to have a religious under current; especially with students from different schools. We had and Italian Catholic School, a French Catholic School, a good old, regular Canadian public school.. The bickering between children focused only around the school one attended; and fights often broke out…by fights I mean fisticuffs or name calling; or perhaps comparison of lessons; but these were short lived as we joined in our games. The town had but one high school which was a wonderful melting pot. Children from all the public schools attended the same high school and soon learned to appreciate and laugh at the differences at the public school level.

School rules were much different to what they are today. The schools had two playgrounds at opposite ends of the building…a boys’ and a girls’ playground. They had separate entrances…one for boys and one for girls. Like ‘never the twain should meet’! A bell would sound and you lined up in single file in front of the teacher of your class; and proceeded in a straight line to your classroom. No talking, no chewing gum, no laughing, no pushing or shoving! Straight to the principal’s office to explain any of these infractions.

Grades 7 and 8 for the public school children was designed on a senior level, with class rotations; as in high school and with a multitude of disciplines being explored. Many children of the time really didn’t have a hope of attending a higher level of education after high school and this 7/8 programme afforded a wide range of knowledge before leaving school. Many, many children left school at 16 or younger to join the work force, usually employed in the town’s mines.

Entrance to your high school programmes had to be approved by your parents. Commercial….this course concentrated primarily on skills required in office positions and was attended by all girls; Technical….focused on technical skills required in the work force and was attended by all boys. The General Academic was gender mixed! These were students who aspired to higher education after high school.

My teachers begged, I begged…..but Commercial course it was for me. Consequently bored; I played hooky (skipped classes) every Wednesday and Friday afternoons for two years before finaling being ‘caught’. That story tomorrow.

This is linked to my other blog post:-Pinnacles and Potholes

1 comment:

  1. I loved this blog Ruby so many many memories of my school days and the lines and the teachers. Of s=course all the things that happened in those lines. We never had boys and girl lines but all teh better.