HC Deb 09 April 1804 vol 22 cc1567-8

I beg to ask the Secretary for Scotland whether he will cause inquiry to be made into a case of alleged assault, on 13th January last, by the schoolmaster of Knockindue School, Keose, Lochs, Island of Lewis, upon a boy, aged 13 years, a pupil of that school, reported to the Procurator Fiscal for the Island of Lewis; whether he is aware that the Procurator Fiscal, in making inquiry into the case, sought no information from the parents, or from the doctor who attended the boy and dressed his wounds; that he referred the parents to the School Board of which he, the Procurator Fiscal, is clerk; and that he never brought the case before the School Board; whether he will state what other offices the Fiscal holds; the amount of his commissions, fees, or allowances from private parties for prosecutions for the year ending the 31st of March, 1893; and on what transactions these commissions, fees, or allowances were paid; and whether he is aware that many children in the district are not attending school, whilst the School Board take no notice of the fact?


I am informed by the Procurator Fiscal that he carefully investigated the allegations of undue severity towards pupils made against the head master of Knockindue Public School, and deemed it advisable to institute proceedings. After an exhaustive trial before the Sheriff of Ross and Cromarty, in the course of which he heard evidence from school children, parents, the compulsory attendance officer, the parish doctor and Her Majesty's Inspector of Schools, the headmaster was acquitted. I think it right to add that the Inspector of Schools gave testimony in his evidence to the efficiency and success of the head master; and I understand that the attendance at Knockindue School is about the best in the parish. The Fiscal holds under autho- rity from the Sheriff the offices of clerk to the School Board of Lews, and the office of Secretary to the Piers and Harbours Commissioners. During the year ended the 31st of March, 1893, he did not conduct any prosecution on behalf of private parties, and he received no commissions, fees or allowances in respect of any such prosecutions. The School Board and managers intimated before the trial their willingness to hear the complainants at the first meeting of the new School Board which was recently elected. That meeting takes place to day.


gave notice that he would call attention to the matter on the Estimates.