Upton State Forest: A History

District #7 School

District 7 schoolIn the early years of formal schooling required by the Commonwealth the legislature set up school districts because of the hardships of travel for students to go to a central school. Upton had nine districts. The schools in these districts were one room and were not graded meaning that regardless of age or learning level all students were taught together. (photo courtesy of Upton Historical Society)

District #7 encompassed the northeast section taking in Lackey Street., Ridge Road., part of Westborough Road and what is now the contiguous state forest area. The school was a wood frame building with two front doors probably one for the girls and one for the boys. It was located near the present day intersection of Westborough Road and Southborough Road.

Parents had to supply the textbooks and slates that were used. The school committee paid various people for wood for the stoves that were used for heat. Maintenance was sporadic depending on whether the school was used for that year. At times children in one district would attend school in the next district because there weren’t enough students to justify opening a building. Local school committee reports show several instances when the students in District #7 were combined with District #6, a one room brick schoolhouse on North Street.

Use of these district schools waned as there were fewer children using them and school committees made attempts to centralize education. I have not yet found a record that would tell me when the District #7 building was closed or if it was sold or dismantled. On an audio tape recording in the possession of Upton Historical Society the late Henry Poirier, a life long Upton resident said that it disappeared board by board.

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