WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2017
dame-school  (dāmsko̅o̅l′),USA pronunciation n. (formerly)
  1. Educationa school in which the rudiments of reading, writing, and arithmetic were taught to neighborhood children by a woman in her own home.
  • 1810–20

Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::

dame school n
  1. (formerly) a small school, often in a village, usually run by an elderly woman in her own home to teach young children to read and write

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