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"Regulations For the Government of the Schools in the Town of Deerfield"
(c) Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, Deerfield MA. All rights reserved.
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Massachusetts led the nation in the formation of free local schools. Prior to 1789, towns operated their schools and supervised their instruction in a system that was very loosely organized. In 1789, the commonwealth established a district system. The new districts remained tightly connected to town government. But in 1817, the state decided to allow districts to become self-governing. But Deerfield, like many towns, decided to keep its schools closely tied to the town. It formed a school committee to evaluate and regulate the school system. The rules mandated that the town minister - the leader of the town-supported church - closely supervise the schools along with leading members of town meeting.
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