One interesting thing: I copied and pasted this into Google Translate, and for English it returned "the school", but for Spanish, it returned "una escuela", for Italian "una scuola", French "une école", and German "eine schule". Apparently, English is the only language where the definite article is deemed better by Google.
"We see school" and "I'm near school" both sound wrong to me. "I'm going to school" is fine, on the other hand, but the word "school" here has a different meaning: it's the institution and not an actual building. I don't think you can either see it or be near it. It's the same with church, college, hospital etc.: you can got to church on Sunday, but you see the church when you approach the building.
You're not wrong. It can sound a little off, but I hear myself and others saying "I'm near school" quite a bit. Maybe it is just the relaxation of the language (sorry prescriptivists!), but it's not completely uncommon at least in the US. I can't think of many occassions when I'd say "I see school" but if I made it "I see school from here" it sounds better.
There are three basic areas relevant to your question: 1. School in general, without reference to a particular or named school: You do not use articles to talk about general schools: Do you go to school? Do you attend college? Do you go to high school?
Particular schools (named or obvious from context): Does your child go to the private school (there is only one private school in town, so it need not be named). Do you go to the trade-school? Do you attend the college (the one and only college in town).
A third kind of use or non-use of the article with "school" requires a working knowledge of English vernacular - familiarity with custom and usage of the language. In general, the article is not used when the "school" is something which embodies both the physical structure and the idea of going to school. Perhaps an imaginary dialogue might illuminate the issue a bit. It is not easy to put into a rule which is not full of exceptions:
Two friends meet by chance at a movie theater during regular school hours. They both are supposed to be taking a class at the local high school. One student says to the other, "Oops. It looks like you left school early today, too." The conversation proceeds from there:
"Did you get permission to leave school? [To avoid taking classes AND to leave the school building.]
"No, I had to sneak out of school." [The student had to leave the particular school building.]
"Did anyone see you when you left school? [Left the building]."
"No, but I almost was caught."
"How are you going to catch up on school?" [How are you going to find out what you missed in classed and learn the material.]
"My girlfriend is lending me her notes."
"I hate school. And the school is such a dump." [I hate attending classes and doing homework - I hate going to school. And the physical building housing the school is really unattractive.
I must be wrong, but I have been noticing that there are verbs which are followed by a direct object in the nominative case and others which have the direct object in the accusative. Am I right? Are there verbs which need a direct object in the nominative case rather than in the accusative case?
@Sourick - Not sure specifically what you mean, but if it's about the conjugation then check this page out: https://russianforeveryone.com/Rufe/Lessons/Course1/Grammar/GramUnit5/GramUnit5_2.htm