Heath —Public Schools
Extracted from "History of the Connecticut Valley in Massachusetts, Volume II," by Louis H. Everts, 1879.
At the organization of the town there was a school-house in the southern part, known as Hayward's, on which was yet resting a considerable debt. Dec. 19, 1785, a meeting was held to consider school measures, when it was voted to pay the old house debt and build a new house near the centre of the town.
The following year "£20 was voted for schooling, £7 4s. of which shall be laid out for summer schools, half each to the north and the south schools." Asaph White, Asahel Thayer, and Joseph Butler were appointed a school committee.
In 1787, "£20 was voted for schools, enough of which shall be devoted for reading-schools, and the balance for writing-schools." In 1789, " £l 4s. voted for a school in the east end of the town, if the people desire it." It appears that no school was established there until the summer of 1791. and the privilege was given the Taylor, Allen, Davidson, and Thayer families to send to the centre school in the winter. In 1793 the town was divided into four districts. In 1795. £9 was voted to hire a singing-teacher, and Deacon John Brown was appointed to secure his services." The singing-master and the selectmen were to appoint a plan for the school, and agree upon such rules and regulations as shall be decent and proper." An appropriation of $166.66 was made for schools, and Hugh Maxwell, Peter Hunt, Jonah Thayer, and Seth Hunt were to provide instruction, each in his own district, and superintend the schools.
In 1878 the school committee, composed of Amos Temple, William Bassett, Charles P. Coates, Daniel Gale, and Jonathan Peterson, reported that eight schools, of two terms each, had been taught that year; that the number of children of school-age was 108; and that for the maintenance of these schools $1144.50 was expended and that most of the school buildings were in a good state of repair.