Al Schafer: Masons observe Public Schools Month |

Al Schafer: Masons observe Public Schools Month

Other Voices
Al Schafer

One hundred years ago, members of California Masonic Lodges created Public Schools Week to enhance the idea of education for all.

This tradition has expanded by other community organizations and is now known as Public Schools Month. This April, local Masons are celebrating the centennial of their guiding principle by acknowledging the teachers and scholars of our great local schools.

This year our Nevada County fraternity has the honor of being the home of the Grand Master of Masons in California. Our Brother John Trauner resides in Rough & Ready and recently published the book “California Masonry ­— Rooted in the Gold Country, Forged in Ideals.” Created in 1920 by Grand Master Charles Adams, Public Schools Week recognized students, teachers, administrators and school volunteers; our support for public education endures.

Nevada Lodge #13 F&AM, established in 1850 in Nevada City, will be awarding four scholarships to 2020 graduates of western Nevada County high schools. Two 2020 graduates will receive renewable academic scholarships to colleges and universities, and two graduates will receive vocational scholarships to continue their technical/mechanical education. On the same evening, The Teacher of the Year, selected by a vote of students, will be honored.

Madison Lodge #23 F&AM in Grass Valley, established in 1852, has supported intermediate schools during the academic year by providing books to school libraries and providing program funding to an intermediate school.

Our local Masonic Lodges continue to support the annual Health/Safety and Fire Preparedness Carnival. This year’s event, originally scheduled for May 2 at the Rood Center, has been postponed due to concerns for assembling over 1,000 guests for the outdoor educational gathering.

At the opening of the annual Constitution Day Parade, founded by Nevada Lodge in September of 1966, Masons in Colonial costumes will re-enact the signing of the Constitution. Later, Masons and members of our school-aged youth groups, DeMolay for boys and Job’s Daughters for girls, will be distributing annotated guides to the Constitution of the United States and the Declaration of Independence to students along the parade route.

Al Schafer is a member of both the Nevada Lodge #13 F&AM in Nevada City and Madison Lodge #23 F&AM in Grass Valley.

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