|Kind of School.||No. of Schools.||Total Enrolment.||Average Attendance.|
|Training or Industrial||15||1,280||1,115|
The officials appear to have worked most earnestly for the attainment of this result, as the regulations. under see. 11, chap. 32, 57-58 Vic., empowering the department to enforce attendance, have not as yet, save in a few instances of truancy from industrial institutions, been put into force.
In some localities persuasive powers have failed to obtain such an attendance as the number of children would warrant, so it may yet become incumbent upon the department to adopt more stringent measures to secure increased attendance.
Many bands in the older provinces advance their poverty, and consequent inability to clothe their children properly, as an excuse for the non-attendance of their children. Although the excuse may in some cases be a valid one, it cannot be considered so in all. Frequently it is found that Indians desire their children to absent themselves with a view to the closing of the school, so that the moneys which are paid for teaching purposes may otherwise be paid out periodically to the members of the band.
Save in some parts of the older provinces much lasting good cannot be expected from day-schools, owing to the fact that home influences so readily counteract any good which may be attained through them, and I am pleased to be able to state that the public and separate-school inspectors, who inspect the Indian schools in these provinces semiannually, have in many instances reported that the work done and results Obtained at these schools equal those of the common-schools of the rural districts. However gratifying this may be, there is not a little to be desired before the department can congratulate itself upon their thorough success.
Regularity in attendance at day-schools cannot, of course, be expected where the Indians are nomadic and depend in the main upon hunting and fishing for a living, nor can complete success be looked for at these outlying schools, owing to the difficulty experienced in obtaining good teachers to exile themselves from more civilized parts for the salaries the department has been in the habit of paying.
In the North-west Territories, where accommodation can be had in boarding-schools, day-schools are being closed, and it is expected that by the expiration of the present fiscal year the member of schools thus closed will have been materially increased.
The schools, in the main, are denominational, and, in the case of industrial and boarding-schools, entirely so; and the denominations interested in the last-named, owing to the smallness of the annual per capita grant, are forced to meet any shortage of the Government grant by contributions from outside sources.