Visited by Dr Norman France on August 5, 1966.
1. A Co-educational and Bilingual SchoolThe board should decide on the type of school it would like to see develop here. It may wish to emphasize the particular features which distinguish Feller from other private schools rather than to attempt to provide the same kind of service. In this connection it might be wise to aim for an even balance between boys and girls and between French and English speaking children. Such a co-educational, bilingual school would meet a real need and could expect support from many different groups in the community including the Provincial Board of Education. It is possible, too, that its future development might attract some kind of financial aid from sources outside the province.
2. A Curriculum directed to Experience and the Environment
For several reasons, Feller college is producing only one or two potential University students. For this reason, the emphasis of the curriculum could with profit look in directions other than the bookish academic for its chief inspiration. The study of agriculture, of agricultural engineering, of rural crafts, of home economics, of art could all find an important place in the aims of the school. Such developments would be particularly appropriate for children who for a variety of reasons find the customary academic school diet, difficult to digest.
3. A Service to Community
Inevitably boarding education will be sought by many parents who are unable to provide a satisfactory home environment for their children. It needs to be recognized that a boarding school can provide a stable, secure and affectionate life and many children deprived of a normal home life can be found in any boarding school. There is a virtue in facing this fact squarely and organizing the life of the school to met that need.
In ways such as this, Feller College can provide a really worth while service to the community in this and other Provinces. But for the best use to be made of this service, its existence must be widely known. Hence the need for announcing the available facilities on as large a scale as possible. With an increase in the number of applicants for admission, the Pricipal may be more able to make his selection to ensure an even balance of ages sex and language.
4. A Family Within the School
In order to avoid the extreme spread of age, It is suggested that entry be restricted to the eight grades 4 to 11 inclusive. The "home atmosphere" could be fostered by organizing the 160 pupils into four families living in four distinct parts of the main building. Each family would be in the charge of a mature married couple to act as house parents and both would normally serve the school in some other capacity. Their own flat would be closely linked with the common room and quiet rooms for the 40 children and would form a natuaral division between the sleeping quqrters for boys and girls. Most meals would be taken as a school in the dining room but a tradition of the family having a late drink and cookie together might usefully be developed."
5. Here are suggestions for reorganizing the workload of the school staff.
Here is a breakdown of teacher hours.
The present building is a valuable asset but the furniture should be replaced to provide simple, cheap and efective storage provision for the bedrooms. Each bedroom should have a table and chair for each pupil. With the development of the family plan, a good case could be made out for providing broadloom carpet on the corridors, in bedrooms and in community rooms. This cuts down noise and encourages a more thoughtful attitude to community property.
Classrooms and other teaching spaces should be confined to the ground floor. There would be a real need for additional buildings in back of the main block to provide purpose-built-rooms for home economics, science and agriculture.
Feller College is at the cross-roads.
Dated: August 8, 1966.
Signed: Norman France"