The Common School Act of 1816 allowed residents of any township or village to establish schools, although the cost of construction remained the responsibility of the residents. Education was important to many of Caledon's early settlers, and the first schoolhouses began to appear in the 1830s.
School sections were individually numbered within each township, and often became known by local names. Rural schoolhouses were generally located about three miles apart, this being the distance the sound of the school bell could carry.
Bolton, Caledon East, Caledon Village and Alton supported multi-room village schools. Built in 1875 and modified in 1908, the Alton Public School remains the longest operating school in the Region of Peel.
Eventually, the original log schoolhouses were replaced by those of wood frame, brick or stone construction, typically built to designs promoted by Dr. Egerton Ryerson and Dr. John Hodgin in their provincial manuals on schoolhouse architecture.
With the introduction of centralized schooling in the early 1960s, Caledon's
one-room schoolhouses and several of its village schools were closed. Many were sold and converted for private residential use; others were demolished. Three of Caledon's rural schoolhouses have been designated under the Ontario Heritage Act: SS#3 Caledon - Silver Creek; SS#11 Caledon - Rosehill; SS#7 Chinguacousy - Sharpe's.