The grammar-school of Falkirk is justly held in great reputation. Besides the school- wages the master enjoys a salary and considerable emoluments as session-clerk.
We have here a school for English, to which there is also a salary annexed, the master whereof has no small degree of merit in the line of his profession. There are other schools in Falkirk which do honour to their masters; and, upon the whole, our youths have good opportunities of laying the foundation of future usefulness and importance.
In the village of Camelon there is a dwelling-house and school-room provided for the encouragement of a schoolmaster, but no salary. Lord Dundas of Aske gives to a schoolmaster in Grangemouth a house to dwell in, a schoolroom, and L.5 a year. In Laurieston he gives a dwelling-house and school-room, but not any salary. One of the name of Scott, some years ago, left a small sum of money for the encouragement of a school at Bonnybridge, which is towards the west end of this parish.
Though populous and flourishing situations like Falkirk yield a decent compe tence for the support of respectable schoolmasters, yet in few situations are they paid in proportion to their usefulness in society.
Country schools, where the inhabitants are neither rich nor numerous, require at this time peculiar attention. Parish schools in general ought to have their salaries increased as everything necessary for the comfort and support of life is rising in value, except money, which must of course fall in proportion. Parish schools have been the great nursaries of that general knowledge which is so commonly to be found even among the peasants in Scotland; and from them some of our most illustrious characters have sprung forth. But 1 am afraid, if additional encouragement be not soon given, that those sources of improvement and wisdom must soon be abandoned to the direction of the illiterate. Men of learning and ability will not chuse to languish in obscurity and indigence, but will seek for employment in some of the more lucrative situations ofcivil life; and then the nation will be prevented from being adorned and improved by those luminaries, which have opportunities of education would have formed and drawn out to public view.