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chair, shall be deemed to be made when offering to vote, and treated in the
6737 Sec. 38. Adjournment-change of site.---The qualified voters in the school district, when lawfully assembled, shall have power to adjourn from time to time, as may be necessary, to designate a site for a schoolhouse, by a vote of two-thirds of those present, and to change the same by a similar vote at any annual meeting; Provided, That in any school district where the schoolhouse is located three-fourths of one mile or more from the center of such district, such school house site may be changed to a point nearer the center of the district by a majority vote of those present at any such school meeting; and, provided, further, That in any school district containing more than one hundred and fifty children between the ages of five and twenty-one years and having a district board of six trustees, the school house site therein may be changed and the purchasing of a new site directed, either or both, at any annual or special meeting, by a two-thirds vote of those present at any such meeting.
When a school district has held open, notorious, and adverse possession of a certain schoolhouse site for a period of ten years or more, there is no doubt that such site is the legal site of the district.
The phrase "designate a schoolhouse site," has reference to the first location of a schoolhouse site in a newly organized district. The county superintendent's authority to determine where such site shall be established, when no site can be determined upon by the voters of the district, has reference also to the first location of a schoolhouse site in a newly organized district. The county superintendent has no authority to determine the schoolhouse site when it has once been established. Neither is there any authority for adjourning the annual meeting for the purpose of changing the site when once established.
The literal and legal schoolhouse site is the place actually occupied by the schoolhouse. All distances relative to site and transfers are measured from the schoolhouse. Therefore, a inoving of the schoolhouse to a different part of the school grounds is a change of the site and can be done only under the provisions of section 38, art cle
The "three-fourths of a mile” mentioned in the proviso in this section should be measured on a straight line joining the schoolhouse and the geographical center of the district. Cited Wilber vs. Wooley, 44 Neb., 739 (62 N. W. Reporter, 1095). "Purchase or lease. Neb.,438.
By act of Congress (March 3, 1873), it was enacted that a person occupying a homestead or pre-emption shall have the right to transfer by warranty, against his own acts any part of his homestead or pre-emption for a site for a schoolhouse; and this shall not vitiate his title.
6738 Sec. 39. When superintendent shall fix site. - When no site can be established by such inhabitants aforesaid, the county superintendent of the county in which the district is situated shall determine where such site shall be, and his determination shall be certified to the director of the district, and shall be final, except that such decision may be changed by the county superintendent on a written request of two-thirds of the qualified voters of the district.
6739 Sec. 40. Purchase or lease of site or school house-tax.- The qualified voters shall also have power, at any annual or special meeting, to direct the purchasing or leasing of any appropriate site, and the building, hiring, or purchasing of a schoolhouse, and the amount necessary to be expended the succeeding year, and to vote a tax on the property of the district for the payment of the same.
If a school district fails to have the lease for its schoolhouse site recorded, and a deed is given to another party for land containing said site, the lease the district has from the first owner is no longer in force. It is necessary to secure a lease from the present owner and have it recorded.
Contracts for the erection of schoolhouses should be made with reference to funds on hand. 4 Neb., 360. The board cannot bind the district by an increased expenditure beyond the amount authorized by the district. 10 Neb., 242. Cited 32 Id., 354.
Building committee. 45 Neb., 239.
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6740 Sec. 41. Estimate and levy for general school purposes.That trustees of each school district within the state of Nebraska shall, prior to the annual school district meeting in each year, as provided by law, prepare an estimate showing the amount of money required for the maintenance of schools during the coming school year, shall determine the amount of money required for school maintenance during the coming school year, which shall be an amount sufficient to maintain a school in the manner and for the time provided in section 5440 (11545) of the act, and the amount of money so required shall be levied as a tax upon all of the taxable property of the school district; Provided, That in districts having four children or less of school age, the amount levied shall not exceed the sum of four hundred ($400.00) dollars in any year; and in districts having more than four and less than sixteen children of school age, the levy shall not exceed the sum of fifty ($50.00) dollars per child in addition to the above. The amount of money so voted as being necessary for the maintenance of the school for the coming year shall be certified by the district school board to the county clerk of the county in which said school district is located, and said amount shall be levied by the county board on the assessed value of the school district, and be collected as other taxes; Provided, that the amount so levied shall not exceed in any one year three and one-half ($3.50) dollars on the one hundred dollar valuation as assessed and equalized.
The district court may issue an order on the county board to make the necessary levy for the satisfaction of a judgment against a school district; and when the taxes derived from such special levy are paid into tha county treasury it is the duty of the county treasurer, under the direction of the board of county commissionere, to pay the same into court for the satisfaction of said judgment claim. The district voters have nothing whatever to do with this claim, nor should it be paid out of moneys derived from taxes voted at the annual meeting.
The maximum levy for school purposes that can legally be voted by a school district thirty-five mills (except for the payment of bonds, and for free high school tuition). Any other construction would do violence to the law and extend the taxing powers of a school district beyond the limit therein prescribed.
The annual meeting votes the tax, the county board or clerk le ies it. Cited 4 Neb., 307. 11 Id., 360. 12 Id., 255. 9 Id., 331. Unauthorized levy. 19 Id., 485.
6741 Sec. 42. Joint district-certificate of valuation.It shall be the duty of the county clerk of any county in which a fractional part of a joint school district is located, on or before the 15th day of June of each year, to certify the assessed valuation of all taxable property of such fractional part of said joint school district to the clerk of the county in which the school house of said district is located.
6742 Sec. 43. Joint district levy.—The county board of the county in which is located the school house of any joint school district, acting in pursuance of section 11540 of Cobbey's Annotated Statutes of Nebraska for 1911, shall make a levy for said school district, as may be necessary, and the county clerk of said county shall certify said levy on or before September 1st in each year, to the county clerk of each county in which is situated any portion of said joint school district.
6743 Sec. 44. Tax for legal purposes.—The legal voters may also, at any annual or special meeting, determine the number of mills, not exceeding ten mills on the dollar of the assessed valuation, which shall be expended for the building or building an addition thereto, purchase, or lease of school house, in said district, when there are no bonds voted for such purpose, which amount shall be reported, levied and collected as in the preceding section; Provided, that upon petition of one-fourth of the legal
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voters of such district to the trustees at least twenty days before time of annual or special meeting, praying that the question of voting a tax to create a special fund for the erection of a school house in said district be submitted to the qualified voters at such annual or special meeting, the trustees shall include such question in the posted notices of business to be considered at such annual or special meeting. Said petition shall definitely state the whole question to be submitted including the sum desired to be raised or the amount of tax so levied, the period of years and the whole regulation, including the time of its taking effect or having operation. And if a majority of the qualified voters at such meeting vote in favor thereof the record of the meeting shall be certified to the county board, which upon being satisfied that all the requirements have been substantially complied with, shall cause the proceedings to be entered upon the record of the county board and shall make an order that the levy be made in accordance therewith and collected as other taxes. The provisions of sections 11298, 11299, 11300 and 11301 of Cobbey's Annotated Statutes for 1907, relating to special funds for the erection of court houses shall apply so far as practicable to the procedure under this act, the school board of district trustees having power to contract for the erection of the proposed building under the same restrictions as the county board in case of the erection of a court house and any residue of such tax going into the school district general fund; Provided, further, that the amount of such special tax so levied shall not exceed ten mills on the dollar valuation above the amount allowed by law for general school purposes, and that the total amount voted for the period of years shall not exceed ten per cent of the assessed valuation of the school district. Provided, further, that if a majority of the qualified electors vote in favor thereof, the school board may at once proceed to carry out the purpose of the levy as provided in the petition, and to do so, are hereby authorized to issue warrants, as needed, not to exceed eighty-five per cent of the amount raised by the levy, against the fund voted.
6744 Sec. 45. Same-how expended. - The tax levied and collected, as provided by the preceding section, shall be expended under the direction of the district made at the annual meeting, or in the absence of such direction, then such tax shall be expended as the district board of the district may direct. Money remaining in the treasury after the purpose for which it was raised has been accomplished, and after all debts for which the fund is liable have been discharged, may be transferred to any other fund of the district, at any district meeting.
Certain sections of chapter 79, Compiled Statutes, 1895, entitled “Schools” construed and held, (1) That the electors of a school district, and they alone at their regular annual meeting, or at a special meeting called for such purpose, have power to direct the building of a schoolhouse; (2) that the district board of a school district has no power or authority of law to appropriate the funds of a school district to the erection of a schoolhouse, unless first authorized so to do by a vote of the electors of such school district; (3) that when a school district owns a schoolhouse site and has the money in its treasury snfficient to build a schoolhouse, which money was raised for that purpose, the electors of such school district, at any regular annual meeting, or at a special meeting called for that purpose, may direct the building of a school, house on the school site, and that such school building be paid for out of the funds on hand for that purpose; (4) that the ele tors at such meeting may designate the school board to act as the agent of the district to superintend the construction of such schoolhouse; (5) that if no one is designated by the electors of the school district to superintend the construction of the school building directed to be built, then the s-hool board of sich district has authority to make contraits and superintend the erection of the school building ordered; (6) that the electors of a school district are not obliged to select the members of the school board as agents to superin
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tend the construction of a building ordered to be built, but may select such persons as in their judgment, will best subserve the interests of the school district. 45 Neb., 239.
Moneys derived from state funds and apportioned by county superintendent, can be legally used for no purpose except to pay teachers' wages. School officers who use any part of such funds for any other purpose become personally responsible to the district for the amount thus used, and are liable to be prosecuted for malfeasance in office. As regards money raised by district tax: (1) When the district has directed the manner in which this tax shall be expended, the officers are bound to follow such direction. The fact that the district at a meet
tax for a particular purpose is held to be “direction” as regards the money derived from that specific part of the tax. (2) When the district has not specified any particulars in voting the tax, nor directed the board in any manner as to the disbursements of the school funds, then the district officers may pay out the funds as called for, and at their discretion (except the state apportionment as mentioned above). When money has been raised for building purposes, or any other specific purpose, and has not been expended, the district at any meeting may transfer such money to any other fund. The building fund cannot be lagally transferred to the teachers' fund as long as there are debts due against the district for building expenses. Funds derived from the state cannot be legally transferred from the teachers' fund in any manner whatever, (See last part of section 1, subdivision XI, and last clause of section 5, article VIII, of the constitution).
The directon spoken of in this section is general, and not special; it cannot degrend to all the details of school management. Cited 9 Neb., 331. 19 Id., 562. 32 Id., 354.
6745 Sec. 46. Time School Taught--They shall also determine at each annual meeting the length of time a school shall be taught in the district in the ensuing year, which shall not be less than four months by a legally qualified teacher in a district having less than twenty pupils of school age, nor less than seven months in districts having between twenty and seventy-five pupils inclusive, nor less than nine months in districts having more than seventy-five pupils. They may also determine and instruct the distr:ct officers as to the different lengths of the terms of school and seasons of the year in which the same shall be taught and the district officers shall see that school is actually taught therein by a licensed teacher in conformity to such instructions and for not less than the length of time herein required. No district shall receive any portion of the state funds unless school shall have been actually taught therein for the length of time required by this act; provided, in case of epidemic sickness prevailing to such an extent that the school board in any district shall deem it advisable to close any or all schools within the district, or if on account of the destruction of the school house it shall be impossible to continue the school, such closing of school shall not prevent it from drawing its proper share of the state apportionment. Such sickness or destruction of school house shall be sworn to by the district board and the oath filed with the county superintendent within ten days after the annual school meeting: Provided, further, that no district shall be deprived of its proportionate share of the state school funds when it shall appear by the affidavit of the district board to be made and filed, as aforesaid, that the district has in good faith raised and expended the maximum tax allowed by law and the funds raised have been insufficient to maintain a school for the time herein provided. (Emergency.)
It is not within the authority of the annual meeting to determine the wages to be paid to a teacher; the school board is the proper authority to fix the teachers' wages. Neither can the annual meeting determine whether the teacher shall be male or female.
The things mentioped in section 14 must be determined at the annual meeting, and if not then determined must be left to the board.
The penalty which the law inflicts upon a district for not keeping up schools is the foreiture of the next year's apportionment.
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The teacher's pay goes on while the school is closed by order of the board so long as he holds himself in readiness to go on with the school.
It must be clear that in consequence of such epidemic (or destruction of house) no school could be taught, and that the failure was not caused by mere neglect. (Maxwell's Practice.)
It is the duty of the county superintendent to see that no district in his county receives credit for school taught by one who does not hold a valid certificate.
If a district, at the annual meeting, leave the length of the term of school to the discretion of the school board, it can be compelled to make good the reasonable contracts entered into by the board.
6746 Sec. 47. Sale of property.—The qualified voters shall also, at any annual or special meeting, authorize and direct by a two-thirds vote the sale of any schoolhouse, site, building, or other property belonging to the district when the same shall no longer be needed for the use of the district; and when real estate is sold the district may convey the same by deed, signed by the moderator of the district, and such deed, when acknowledged by such officer to be the act of the district, may be recorded in the office of the recorder of deeds of the county in which the real estate is situated, in like manner as other deeds.
A school district board cannot legally sell a schoolhhouse or site without being directed to do so by the legal voters at a district meeting. When the district has so authorized them by a two-thirds vote it would seem proper for the board to advertise and sell the same to the highest bidder.
6747 Sec. 48. Suits, districts interested in.—They may also give such directions and make such provisions as they shall deem necessary in relation to the prosecution or defense of any proceeding in which the district may be a party or interested.
6748 Sec. 49. Procedure where district fails to provide school. — Where no levy is voted at the annual school district meeting, or where the district votes to have no school, or where no action is taken by the annual meeting to provide for school, it shall be the duty of the county superintendent of the proper county to make and deliver to the county clerk of such county in which any part of the district is situated not later than the first Monday in August following the annual meeting an itemized estimate of the amounts necessary to be expended during the ensuing year for school purposes in such district. It shall be the duty of the county clerk to levy such taxes on the taxable property of the district, to be collected by the county treasurer at the same time and in the same manner as the state and county taxes are collected, and when collected to be paid to the treasurer of the proper district on the order of the director countersigned by the moderator of the district.
6749 Sec. 50. Seven months school.—For the purpose of providing at least seven months school each year in the first eight grades for all the youth of this state whose parents or guardians live in public school districts whose funds are not sufficient to maintain school for at least seven months, there shall be paid to each district by the state treasurer such an amount as is necessary to enable such district to maintain seven months of school with a legally qualified teacher; Provided, that no state aid shall be given any public school district unless there has been levied the maximum tax levy allowed by law and until the accounts of such district are audited and approved by the county superintendent of the proper, county. And provided further, that no district containing less than twelve