Order and Government of the School

Order and system, should be the characteristic plan of a school conducted on the monitorial plan, and it is the object of the trustees of this Institution, that it continue to be distinguished in these respects. Much however depends upon the co-operation of the parents and guardians of the pupils, for it is greatly in their power either to aid or impede its salutary regulations.

Means are therefore taken to impress upon the minds of those who send their children, the necessity of a strict fulfillment of their own duties. This is attempted in the following manner. First, a competent agent is employed to visit at their houses, all the parents of the pupils, and to enjoin a punctual attendance at school, as well as to promote the general objects of the Institution. This measure has not long been in operation, yet, during the last year, great benefit has resulted to the schools, and it is believed, that it has been productive of much good to the parents. The person engaged as an agent, Rev. Samuel E. Cornish, being a man of color, and at the same time of piety, education, and gentlemanly manners, is considered eminently qualified, as a medium through which, much practical instruction might be conveyed to the homes of those whose good, in the full extent of the word, is ardently sought by the patrons of the institution.

Secondly, On the admission of Scholars, it as been practice for many years, to present the parents or guardians the printed Regulations of the School. This little book contains many useful hints respecting the relative duties of both parents and children, and it is calculated to act as a valuable domestic adviser, under the following arrangement. It begins with a kind general address to the parents, and then treats with perspicuity on the following subjects.

On the force of Example.
On attending places of public worship.
On reading the Scriptures.
On speaking the Truth.
On giving commands to children.
On correcting children in a proper state of mind.
On industry.
On cleanliness.
On dishonesty.
On using profane of indecent language.
On cruelty to brutes.
On the education of children.

The school hours are from 9 o’clock in the morning till 12, and from 2 till 5 in the afternoon.

Setting aside all philosophical reasoning upon the subject, experience has shown great utility of Rewards and Punishments in the government of the school, and that its discipline and general arrangement being in conformity with the Monitorial System, presents advantages to the pupils, similar to the other public schools of this city, conducted on the same plan.

From Charles C. Andrews, History of the New-York African Free Schools. New York: Mahlon Day, 1830.