Ottawa County Commissioner Gives Statistics
on Opening of Rural Schools
(28 August 1936)

Allendale Township
Allendale High School: Stanley Boven, Principal
White School: Mrs. Doris Plant
Star School: Lois VanSomeren
Curry School: Enno Keegstra
Tuttle School: No report
Parish School: Mary E. Wolbrink
Bass School: Closed
Brotherton School: Mrs. Mildred Scott
Blakeney School: Elsa M. Vannatter
VanWestenburg School: Closed

Chester Township
Harrisburg School: Lucille Brydges
McNitt School: Edward Kelly, Jr.
Waller School: No report
Lachmann School: Closed
Big Springs School: Closed
Lisbon School: Mrs. Josephine Beuschel
Porter School: Jean Ewing
Conklin High School: Otto W. Hecksel, Principal: Mrs. Caroline Ade, Mrs. Mildred Weis

Crockery Township
Taylor School: No report
Spoonville School: Closed
Patchin School: Mrs. Missia Viebrock
Lawrence School: Eli O'Bradovich
McMann School: Mrs. Marvel Lund
Nunica High School: R. C. Plant, Principal; Marvin TenElshof, Constance Hillman, Edith Fritz
French School: Ferris Hering

Georgetown Township
Canada Hill School: Arthur DeVries, Helen Bosink
Haire School: Albert Spyker
Bursley School: Francis Tigelaar, Hazel Northouse
Hanley School: Ezra Balzer
Alward School: Dennis Roelofs, Margaret Repic
Jenison School: Clay Utter
Hudsonville High School: D. H. VandeBunte, Superintendent; Francis Geuge, Principal; Gerrit Brandt, Ruth VerHey, Faith Fleser, Don VanVoorhorst, Myrtle Klooster, Gladys Seydell, Norma Alward.
Sand "Hill" School: Mrs. Martha Hoag
Shackhuddle School: No report
Chrystler School: Mrs. Mildred Scott

Jamestown Township
Bell School: Mrs. Dorothy Horton
Jamestown High School: John Wyma, Principal; Henrietta Smeelink, Zora VanOsa
Forest Grove School: Bernard Klein--ker, Marie Hildebrandt
Mitchell School: Raymond Brummel
Zutphen School: Fanny Wyma, Dorothy Postma
Gitchell School: Jessie DeJonge
West Grove School: Kenneth Rynbrandt
Star School: Mrs. Francis Buege

Polkton Township
Coopersville High School: Charles D. Veldhuis, Superintendent
Jackson School: Mrs. Matilda Dyke
Eastmanville School: June Witcop
Rankans School: Mrs. Dorothy Vandermate
Marshall School: Mrs. Hester Ruster
Hanchett School: No report
South Evergreen School: Marjorie Piper
Centennial School: Asa Kelly
Jericho School: Helen Shaw
North Evergreen School: Nellie Mulder
Toothacre School: Mrs. C. Sikkema
Red School: Fenno Densmore

Robinson Township
North Robinson School: Joan Parker
Maplewood School: Evelyn Antes
Clark School: Helen Clark
Knight School: No report
Robinson Center School: Theressa Shaarda
New Era School: No report
Worley School: Helen L. Price

Tallmadge Township
Lamont High School: Martin Bouwma, Principal; Mrs. Alice Smith
Cross School: Morris E. Kronemeyer
Delaney School: Jessie Doane
Star School: Mrs. Joanna S. Morton
Sand Creek School: No report
River Bend School: Frank Clark

Wright Township
Boody School: Mrs. Agnes VanWiltenberg
Lillie School: Mrs. Vera E. Bliss
Clayton School: Mrs. Louise Gahan
McDearmen School: Mrs. Mina J. Peck
Laubach School: Anna Wenger
Berlin High School: Glenn Fynewever, Superintendent
Diamond School: Louise Spinnger
Carroll School: Esther Lillis
Reister School: Mrs. Mildred Brittain

NOTE: Not included in the report are Blendon, Grand Haven, Holland, Olive, Spring Lake, and Zeeland Townships.  It seems to be the eastern part of Ottawa County.

Commissioner Gives Statistics on
Opening of Rural Schools

Some of the rural schools of Ottawa county will begin their 1936 sessions as early as August 31 this year. It is expected the schools will take a week's vacation in October for potato harvesting, according to G. G. Groenewoud, Ottawa county school commissioner. The remaining schools will begin the Tuesday after Labor Day.

Mr. Groenewoude further states that almost all of the school districts have engaged their teachers for the coming year, and that those that are still undecided are expected to hire soon. Due to several different factors, an extensive change is seen amongst the county school teachers, there being 72 changes this year amongst the 123 school districts.

By the term "Rural School" is meant those schools which are not located within the incorporated limit of any city or village. Ottawa county has 123 school districts, each of which has one school, with the exception of School District No. 1 Park township, which has three schools and employs nine teachers. The enrollment in this particular district is 275, which of course, makes it the largest rural school district in the county.

Not all of the 123 school districts hire teachers, however, for if any one district has an enrollment so small that it would not be worthwhile to hire a teacher, arrangements are made so that the district provides transportation and tuition and the children are sent to a nearby school. Schools in these districts are alled "closed schools". The people located in a school district can determine, by vote, whether or not a teacher should be hired or the school closed. At the present time there are five closed schools in the county. The Reister school transports its children to the Porter school, and the Lachman school transports its children to the Lisbon school. Those schools are in Chester township. The Van Westenberg school in Allendale township, transports its children to the Allendale high school, and the Spoonville school in Crockery in Crockery transports its pupils to the Nunica high school. The Bass River school district is taking steps to close its school and send the children to the Parish school, in Allendale township for the coming year. In the 123 school districts, five of which employ no teacher, there is a total of 161 teachers employed. There are 86 schools employing one teacher; 22, two teachers; 4, three teachers; 3, four teachers; one district employing six teachers and one district employing nine teachers in its three schools.

Each school district is an independent unit, being entirely under the control of its own school. The board hires the teachers, janitor, and other employees; makes all reports; adopts text books; takes the school census and does all that is necessary for the maintenance and success of the school.

During the school year of 1936-1937 many of the school districts will furnish text books and supplies for all the pupils, so that it will no longer be necessary for the parents to bear this additional expense.

Five hundred thirty0four pupils graduated from the eighth grade rural schools last spring; a majority of whom are expected to enter high school this fall. Mr. Groenewoude states that it is not necessary to make application to enter one of the high schools and that the State pays the tuition. It is, however, necessary for the student to buy his, or her, own books and supplies. Six of the rural schools taught some high school subjects last year, but few reached above the tenth. Coopersville, Marne and Hudsonville are the only twelve-grade schools in this area.

The Observer is indebted to Mr. Groenewoud for the information contained in the foregoing story and also for the following list of school districts in the nine townships of northeastern Ottawa county, with the name of the teacher, if one has been hired:

Transcriber: ES
Created: 17 April 2012