HC Deb 08 April 1861 vol 162 cc314-5

Order for Second Reading read.


said, he rose to move the second reading of this Bill, which, he said, was founded on the Act introduced by the right hon. Member for Warwickshire (Mr. Adderley). By that Act industrial schools were placed under the control of the Council of Education; but at the end of last Session a short Bill passed providing that the management of these schools should be transferred to the Home Office, on the ground that they were considered of a penal character. At the time that Bill passed it was stated that some technical objections rendered the existing Act difficult to he carried into execution, and it was attempted by the present Bill to put the enactments of the Act into a more working form. Whatever questions might arise upon its provisions, however, could be more conveniently disposed of in Committee; and he hoped that, under these circumstances, the House would he disposed to agree to the second reading without much discussion.


wished to make one observation, which as it related to the omission of a provision of the former Act, could not very well be made in Committee. It was this, that by the former Act guardians were allowed, with the consent of the Poor Law Board, to contract with the managers of industrial schools for the maintenance of children. This was repealed by the present Bill, and rightly so, because it belonged rather to the Poor Law. He hoped, however, that this omission would be cured by some special enactment. This might be done by merely inserting the words "and maintenance" after "education" in the Act 18 & 19 Vict. c. 34, and he hoped it would not be lost sight of by the Committee upstairs. The way in which children were treated in our workhouses was very discreditable. It was notorious that bringing them up in crowds was bad, both morally and physically, and girls especially were sent out to service at a tender age, when they were unable to take care of themselves, and the consequence was, that they frequently came back to the workhouse with illegitimate children, thus perpetuating a race of paupers; a state of things very disgraceful as well as very expensive to the country.


said, he would admit that the present Bill was a great improvement upon his Bill of 1857. In Committee, however, he thought that some amendments might still be introduced, and he should venture to suggest some. With regard to the point mentioned by the hon. Member, it was met by the 18th Section.

Bill read 2o, and committed for Friday.