HC Deb 30 July 1879 vol 248 cc1639-54

rose to move— That it would be desirable to modify the Code of Education by adding Elementary Science to the subjects mentioned in Article 19, c. 1. The hon. Gentleman stated that object lessons were introduced in the early part of the school course, and that it was very desirable that they should be continued in the Second and Third Standards by adding elementary science to that class of subjects. The suggestion, since he last made it, had been gradually gaining adherents, including no less an authority than the London School Board. He might remind the House that the Committee which sat on Elementary Education in 1868, and the Royal Commission on Scientific Instruction, strongly recommended that elementary science should form a part of the National School system. Many of Her Majesty's Inspectors of Schools were also of the same opinion; and he could quote in favour of his views the almost unanimous voice of those who had devoted themselves most successfully to the education of the people—such men as Dean Dawes, Mr. Henslow, Mr. Ellis, and Sir James Kay-Shuttle worth. Lastly, he might refer to those whom in this matter he regarded as, perhaps, the highest authorities of all—namely, the children themselves. Wherever elementary science was taught they welcomed it with a warm interest. He did not seek to impose any new duty on the Department or on schools, but only to leave them an option. The practical difficulties in the way were quite imaginary; and his proposal, so far from upsetting the equilibrium of the Code, would for the first time establish it, seeing that at present the Code was entirely one-sided, all knowledge of natural phenomena being excluded. He admitted that it would not be desirable to impose new duties on school managers or committees; but he did not propose to do so. Quite the contrary; his wish was to remove an objectionable restriction. His proposal would, therefore, not make the Code more complex, but the reverse. The present system crammed the heads of the children, and overtaxed their memories. A string of verbs, or dates, or names of Kings, was a mere matter of recollection. He wished, on the contrary, that a portion of the school-time should be devoted to explanations of the common phenomena of nature, which experience showed had a strong interest for children. It was often said that it was ridiculous to teach "ologies" before the children could read and write thoroughly. But, in the first place, it was a misnomer to call the lessons he proposed "ologies;" secondly, it should be remembered that when children were learning to read they had to read something, and the question was, what that something was was to be? The real difficulty was that we had no good old Saxon word in use among us for "natural science." If we had any expression equivalent to the German word Natur kunde, he believed that the House would unanimously adopt the present Resolution. He was, however, compelled to use the word "science," though, unfortunately, he immediately frightened hon. and right hon. Gentlemen opposite. Contrary to what was believed in some quarters, his proposal would really not involve any appreciable cost. The little books would come to no more than those on history or grammar; while the sun, moon, and stars, rain and dew, wind and light, air and water, heat and cold, stones and flowers, were before us all; and even if a few objects as illustrations were required they could be obtained for a few shillings. He wished for nothing difficult or abstruse, nothing beyond the range of the children's minds and daily experience. In mechanics the simple forces might be explained to them—why carts were put on wheels, how levers and pulleys acted, the use of the screw and wedge; then the nature and relative distances of the principal heavenly bodies; in agricultural districts the primary facts relating to air and water, the character of the soil, the reason for the rotation of crops, the origin and principal qualities of such substances as chalk, coal, iron, copper, &c.; the succession of the seasons, the flow of rivers, the growth of plants; the fundamental rules of health, the necessity for ventilation and cleanliness; and, last, not least, the need for industry, frugality, and economy. Explanations of these simple and every-day things would be most interesting and useful to the children. So far from cramming and confusing them, you would introduce light and order into their little minds, and give them an interest in their lessons which, under the present system, they rarely felt. So much for the educational side; but, before sitting down, he wished to say one word with reference to the Amendment from the point of view of local self-government. Much of our freedom and success in Parliamentary government was due to the training afforded by our municipal and other local institutions, and he confessed that he viewed with some apprehension the present tendency to centralization. He was not asking that any new duty should be imposed on localities, but only that they should have a power, which, practically, they possessed until the last few years, and which the Education Department had every year reported to have been exercised with discretion. Several school boards, including that of the Metropolis, were anxious to try the system; and in the interest, therefore, of local self-government, in the interest of education—nay, more, in the name of the children—he asked the House to sanction his Resolution.

Amendment proposed, To leave out from the word "That" to the end of the Question, in order to add the words "it would be desirable to modify the Code of Education by adding Elementary Science to the subjects mentioned in Article 19, c. 1,"—(Sir John Lubbock,) —instead thereof.

Question proposed, "That the words proposed to be left out stand part of the Question."


hoped the House would reject a Resolution the effect of which would be to increase the expense of education.


explained that such would not be, and was not meant to be, the effect of his Resolution, which was merely to substitute one subject for any other contained in the 19th Article of the Code.


said, that if the hon. Member did not propose to add to the expenses of education in this country there could be no great objection to the Resolution; but if it would have that effect, it was a proposal which, in these hard times, ought to be resisted on behalf of the ratepayers.


said, that, while he could not agree with the hon. and gallant Member opposite, he was bound to say he thought his hon. Friend the Member for Maidstone had approached the question from one point of view only, and had not sufficiently regarded certain and other important effects which would flow from his Motion, and which were worthy the attention of the House, one of which was the effect the adoption of his Motion would have upon elementary teachers. He had had for some time on the Paper the following Notice:— To call attention to the expediency of establishing a series of higher standards in Night Schools; and also to the unnecessary number of examinations, and the difficulty of some of the subjects required of pupil teachers and students in Training Colleges. It might not appear, at first sight, what the connection was between those subjects and his hon. Friend's Motion; but if that Motion were adopted it would become obligatory, instead of permissive, as at present, for all elementary teachers to have passed an examination in natural science, and all school managers would require that the teachers should be competent to teach natural science. That would be a great addition to the already heavy burden placed on the shoulders of pupil teachers and Colleges. There had, within the last 15 years, been a steady, a constant, and an enormous increase in those burdens. The following subjects were, practically, compulsory upon students during their first and second years in the Training Colleges:—Learning by heart, reading, penmanship, school management, grammar, composition, geography, history, arithmetic, algebra, mensuration, geometry, political economy, and, he supposed, to cheer those whom the teaching of political economy had made dull, vocal music. There were, in addition, elementary classics and science, which were not strictly obligatory; but the inducements held out to take up one or the other might be regarded as rendering it a matter of compulsion. He asked the House whether, if his hon. Friend's Motion were adopted, there would not be, so to say, a further tightening of the girths? In fact, natural science would become a strictly obligatory subject of examination. What they should look for, in his opinion, was not so much the teaching of science as for what used to be called object lessons. There were two points he desired to press on behalf of the unfortunate pupil teachers and students to whom he had referred. He did not think the Education Department sufficiently appreciated the great difficulties under which knowledge had to be acquired by the children of the labouring classes of this country. The House was not now drawing up a merely abstract Code which they would wish to see complied with. They were dealing with girls and boys, women and men, and they ought to bear in mind the class of life from which they were drawn before they placed upon them additional burdens. It was a different thing for a University man to shut himself up in his room, and "sport his oak," as they call it at Cambridge, from what it was for a poor boy to study amid the numerous surrounding distractions of his narrow home. He had positively known cases in which the minds of boys had given way under the strain which was put upon them. A pupil teacher or student, from the time he became such until his leaving the Training College, had to pass no fewer than eight examinations, and there was no break in their continuity. No sooner had they passed one examination than they had to prepare for another. At the University of Cambridge examinations were held at considerable intervals, and no one was worried by them. Then, again, in subjects to which they were now asked to make an important addition, the standard required was absurdly high. The standard, for instance, in the case of high mathematics required in a pupil teacher last year at the Training College was positively higher than was required for the ordinary Bachelor of Arts degree at Cambridge. Many hon. Members he saw present would agree with him that there was no greater tyrant than a Cambridge mathematical man. Now, the system of which he spoke had grown up under the auspices of a gentleman of whom he desired to speak with every respect—an eminent Cambridge mathematician. The tyranny which they had succeeded in shaking off in Cambridge had been transferred to the Training Colleges by a very eminent Cambridge mathematical man, Mr. Sharpe; but he hoped his noble Friend the Vice President of the Council would put his foot down, and would not allow himself to be bullied by any of those Cambridge mathematical men. It was an intolerable tyranny that a person, however learned in other subjects, should be debarred from becoming a teacher of elementary subjects merely because he did not happen to be thoroughly versed in high mathematics. His noble Friend would, he trusted, inform the permanent officials of his Department that the opinion of many persons whom he (Lord Edmond Fitzmaurice) could name, to whom he had spoken, and who were capable judges of the matter, was that the state of things to which he had directed the notice of the House was absurd and ridiculous. He believed that his noble Friend had already lightened the load of the unhappy pupil teachers so far as regarded the extent to which they were required to learn poetry and prose by heart; and he hoped he would go further in the same direction as regarded other subjects, and would transfer the higher mathematics from the obligatory to the voluntary column. Another point in his indictment against the present elementary education system was, that the standards of instruction in night schools were so low that they tempted the children of the working classes to go to such schools instead of to day schools, to the detriment both of their health and education. Night schools should, in his opinion, be places to which working-class children could go with advantage after they had learnt all they could in the day schools. A Committee of the London School Board had been, or was about to be, appointed to consider this subject, and he was informed that the system he recommended had been at work for some time in Glasgow, and with the best results. He had brought forward the first subject to which he had referred, because of the impression made upon him last winter by cases with which he became acquainted, in which the cruelty of the existing system of examination had caused a breaking down, not only of physical health, but, worse still, of mental capacity.


said, the comparison which had been so well made between the standard of mathematical teaching in the Universities and the standard of mathematical teaching in Training Colleges was to those who were familiar with the system of the Universities pregnant with, meaning. The great evil in our educational movement was a confusion of means and ends. Surely the objects of any Training College should be to produce instruments, not only capable, but willing, readily and cheerfully, to discharge the useful, though, perhaps, humble, service of training the children of the labouring classes satisfactorily to perform their duties in life. The present system tended to the production of the unknown genius—the philosopher masquerading as a village schoolmaster. They might be certain that a man who was very learned in the higher branches of mathematics would not be on the best way for making a good teacher of the three R's; for, having the power to soar into the nobler regions of the binomial theorem, and of quadratic equations, he would despise those rudimentary branches of education. The present system reminded him of that of the magnificent horticulturist who spent thousands a-year upon his vineries only to produce a few show bunches of grapes. With regard to the question of the fairness of giving repetition a place in examinations, he might say that when he was at Harrow the idea of reciting from memory at an examination was never dreamt of. A desperate attempt was, indeed, made at one time at that school to galvanize the system of repetition into life by prizes for running it off in quantities; but the attempt was not successful. In short, repetition could never be a true standard of competitive merit. With regard to the suggestion that had been made as to the expediency of raising the standard of teaching in night schools, he wished to point out that if the alternative subjects that had been named were admitted into a school of the kind, its manager would never engage a master who was not competent to conduct the night department with its enlarged curriculum. It would accordingly bring about in an indirect way the very mischief against which, in its direct shape, his noble Friend protested. He invited his noble Friend to re-consider the matter in this light. He should not be able to vote with the hon. Member for Maidstone, and he hoped that the Education Department would not forget the weighty warnings given them by the noble Lord.


said, it was not from, any indifference to education that he hesitated to attribute so much importance to the teaching of science. The question resolved itself into one of practical difficulty in carrying out the object which his hon. Friend (Sir John Lubbock) had in view. His (Mr. Ramsay's) objection was that children up to 11 or 12 years of age were heavily taxed in acquiring any knowledge of the elementary branches of science in elementary schools. He felt that if it was desirable to add to the Code the elements of natural science care should be taken that they were taught by men perfectly versed in those branches of science in which they gave instruction. The noble Lord (Lord Edmond Fitzmaurice) had referred to the difficulty in the way of teachers at the present time acquiring sufficient knowledge to pass examinations in science. There could be no doubt that these examinations were heavy. In normal schools the elements of natural science were taught, and the students acquired some knowledge in these branches; but he doubted whether that knowledge was such as to enable them to teach the elements of natural science with success in the schools in which they might be employed. His objection to this system of instruction was that the number of branches which the children were required to learn was too great rather than too small. Too many subjects were forced upon them; and unless they could develop greater natural power on the part of the pupils he thought it would not, at the present time, be expedient to require from the teachers that they should give instruction to any class of children under 13 years of age in elementary branches of science. If they were dealing with children over 13 years of age he should take a different view of the case; and, under these circumstances, he would admit that it would be desirable to teach the children the elements of natural science. Children between 11 and 13 might not only derive information, but be very much interested in acquiring knowledge in any branch of natural science taught by the teachers; but the difficulty which forced itself upon him arose from the fact that the younger children were now over-taxed. Until the standard of the Education Department was reduced he should not feel himself bound to support the Motion of his hon. Friend.


entirely agreed with the noble Lord (Lord Edmond Fitzmaurice) in his observations, and the hon. Member opposite (Mr. Ramsay). He (Sir Baldwyn Leighton) thought the training of teachers was being carried too far. The acquirements expected from them were such that in country districts it was often found very difficult to obtain the services of a teacher. He hoped the noble Lord the Vice President of the Council would reject the proposal of the hon. Baronet. Possibly, if the study of mathematics in Training Colleges were to be reduced from the present high standard, it might be expedient to introduce some elementary science, and even other practical subjects, into the curriculum of teachers; but, at present, he thought the introduction of this subject would not be at all desirable.


said, as he understood the Motion, it was intended to place elementary science on a par with poetry and other subjects of a kindred character. The pupil teachers had power, under the existing rules, of passing examinations on subjects of science, and they were, in fact, invited to do so. It had fallen to his lot to submit to the Education Department that science had been unduly favoured under the Code. There was a common belief that, under the operation of the Code, language had been unduly taxed and scientific subjects favoured. That, he knew, was the opinion of a large number of the Inspectors. His object was to put these subjects on a par, and he was very glad to take the opportunity of discovering any preference for what were called University subjects. An opportunity should be afforded the teachers to qualify for instruction. Of course, he was aware that science must always be heavily weighted in the struggle, because it was the natural bias of the young mind to turn far more towards poetry than to science.


said, a very simple question had been complicated by the speech of his noble Friend (Lord Edmond Fitzmaurice). Many persons might approve of the proposition that elementary science should be added to the subjects of tuition, and many might also disapprove of the high-class trainng which was given to the teachers in training schools. This latter question, however, was entirely beside the question which was before the House. The simple issue was, whether elementary science should or should not be constituted an optional subject in connection with our ordinary school education? It seemed to be thought by some hon. Members that if the Amendment before the House were passed, teachers in training schools would be obliged to learn the subjects of natural science. This, he desired to say, was a misconception. Should they, then, allow teachers, who had been taught natural science as an optional subject, to impart instruction in the ordinary phenomena which were continually presented to children? Should not children, he asked, be taught something respecting the air they breathed, the water they drank, and the food they ate? This was organic chemistry—if they wished to call it by a big name—but, after all, it simply meant that the children should have an intelligent knowledge of what they met with every day of their lives, from the first moment when they breathed air until the last moment when they could no longer breathe air. The difficulty in the way of providing this knowledge would not be found to come from the teachers, who generally knew enough of elementary science, but from Her Majesty's Inspectors of Schools, who, for the most part, had not acquired an elementary knowledge of science, and who, consequently, disliked the subject. If these Inspectors had been taught at the Universities the subjects coming under the head of natural science, they would understand themselves that such things were most fit and necessary to be taught to the children. It was that which ought to be the great inducement to the Education Department, if they desired those things to be taught which were so essential to the happiness and comfort of the poorer classes, to see that the Inspectors they appointed should know something of the subject under discussion. With regard to elementary science in mining districts, would it not be extremely useful and important to teach children to know something of the dangers they would meet in their work in the mines, of which they were commonly so negligent and ignorant, and in many cases did not know how to avoid? Those were points—it might be called science, if it was chosen—but they were simply an intelligent knowledge of phenomena which children, as well as men, continually met at all periods of life. That argument might be followed in almost any phase of life. Take, for instance, agriculture. Would it be called high science to teach a child, whose life would be spent in the fields and in connection with agriculture, something regarding the air, food, and the earth, food of plants, the use of manure, and such kindred subjects? That was the proposal of the hon. Baronet the Member for Maidstone. He simply said he did not ask that it should be made compulsory; but he asked that a teacher should be allowed, where he had the knowledge, to adapt that knowledge to the wants of the children in whatever position they might be placed. Let the agricultural child have the knowledge of that which surrounded him. But it need not be compulsory. Let it be optional, and given as a matter of good will between the teacher and his children. It was not suggested that any expense should be incurred. He believed that voluntary effort would give any such illustrative objects as were needed, especially if the teaching was to be optional. The request of the hon. Member for Maidstone, who asked neither for compulsion nor expenditure, was such a simple one that he could not help hoping the Government would refrain from opposing it. The time had undoubtedly come when it was desirable to spread such useful knowledge as that which he had indicated; and he, therefore, trusted that the proposal of his hon. Friend would be carried out with no more delay than was unavoidable.


said, he did not altogether agree with the statement of the right hon. Gentleman who had just sat down, that the speech of the noble Lord the Member for Calne (Lord Edmond Fitzmaurice) was not germane to the subject before the House; for there were, in that speech, some arguments of a very pertinent and weighty character. When the hon. Baronet (Sir John Lubbock) brought forward his proposal last year, he (Lord George Hamilton) stated that the Education Office would be most anxious to consider the views of the hon. Member, and would see whether the practical difficulties standing in the way of the proposal could be overcome. Since he had so answered the hon. Baronet, he and his Colleagues had communicated with a number of gentlemen on the subject before the House, who were capable of giving valuable information and advice, and he would now acquaint the House with the result of those communications. The concluding part of the speech of the hon. Baronet was, he contended, a little misleading. The hon. Baronet made an appeal to the House on behalf of local government, asking that the different localities might have some option with regard to the subjects to be taught in their schools, and concluded by saying that the great branch of human knowledge to which he was drawing attention was excluded from the school curriculum. This, however, was not a perfectly correct statement of the case, as there existed nothing to prevent a competent teacher from giving instruction in elementary natural science to the children under him. But a teacher was not necessarily paid for giving such instruction, and the object of the hon. Baronet was that he should be paid. At present everything in the Elementary Education Code was defined and clear; but the reverse would be the case if the Resolution were passed, because what the hon. Baronet wanted to do was to bring in the subject of natural science and make what is called "a class subject" of it. The first objection to that was, what was the definition of natural science, so as to know what a child was to be taught and in what an Inspector might examine him? Natural science, as he stated last year, included every branch of human knowledge, except, perhaps, history and moral philosophy. There was a large number of excellent teachers who obtained certificates to teach; and if any one of these teachers happened to be out of a place, he or she would be asked—"Can you teach elementary science? "That would be, probably, the first question put to him, and it would be pointed out that the Education Department had laid down the rule. In such a case it would be found that a considerable obstacle would be put in the way of a most excellent teacher obtaining employment. Since last year the Department had had this matter constantly under their consideration; and he said unhesitatingly—although a considerable number of eminent persons' opinions might be quoted in favour of the Resolution—the balance of opinion was against it. This was more true of the teachers than even of the Inspectors. Dr. Gladstone, a prominent member of the London School Board, had given much attention to this subject, and last year he delivered a lecture at the Society of Arts, of which a copy had been sent to him (Lord George Hamilton). Dr. Gladstone had been asked to make out a course, and that course had been sent in; but Dr. Gladstone said that, although it might be suitable for the London School Board schools, he should not take the responsibility for prescribing for the schools in the country. There, then, was another difficulty. They were told that in Germany this class of instruction was given to the children; but there the system of instruction was quite different. The Education Department had altogether abandoned the practice of prescribing a text-book. He agreed with the right hon. Member who had just spoken that the best way to meet this difficulty would be that the managers of different schools should take particular care as to the particular text-books used as reading books in the schools. So, in the mining districts, the manager of a school would take the trouble to obtain such a text-book as would impart the various information referred to by the right hon. Gentleman. But this was information which they could get in the ordinary reading lessons. As to this point, he could only refer to what he said last year. It was said that only 5,000 children had passed in science; but the number was 45,000 in specific scientific subjects, and the number would have been greater only that children were not allowed to compete until after they had passed the Fourth Standard. The hon. Member for North Lanarkshire (Sir Edward Colebrooke) rather complained that the Education Department had ousted the older subjects, and given preference to scientific subjects; but it was satisfactory to learn that, so far from the country schools not holding their own in classical examinations, they had succeeded in beating children from the town schools. In Latin and Greek the children in the country schools had passed better than the children in towns. Then his noble Friend asked that opportunities should be given to those attending night schools to pass in the higher standard and receive instruction in science and other subjects. The night schools were rather excrescences, so to speak, upon the education system, and, with the small number of attendances, it was impossible to pass in the higher standards. No doubt, in many cases the opportunities were availed of, and at the present moment he should not like to give a definite answer on the point. Another point to which his noble Friend had alluded was the alleged intense stringency of the tests imposed on pupil teachers; but he doubted whether, under existing circumstances, there was much proof of that allegation. All that he himself had heard from pupil teachers was rather in favour of increasing the stringency of the tests than otherwise. He quite agreed that they ought to do everything they could to give such an instruction to children of elementary schools as would develop their intelligence and would be useful to them in after-life; but he could not see his way to getting over the practical difficulties to which he alluded, and, therefore, the Department could not accept the Motion.


said, he would only detain the House a few moments, after the speech they had heard from the noble Lord. He was glad to learn from his speech that the noble Lord and his Colleagues had been seriously considering this subject; and although the Government were not as yet able to accept the proposal made to them, he had no doubt that when they had further weighed the matter the difficulties would grow less and less. There were two objections. It was said that if the suggestion of the hon. Member for Maidstone were adopted much more labour would be involved so far as the teachers were concerned, and that there would be great difficulty in defining what were to be the lessons given. But his noble Friend had mentioned a third objection which he thought rather contradicted the other two. He had said that if they allowed this choice it would be so much more easy to teach, and so much more practical that it would drive out the other subjects. Well, if it were easier to teach, the great difficulty of the labour disappeared. By the principle of results, which laid at the very basis of their educational arrangements, it would be found of more practical advantage to the children, and that was precisely the object which they wished to attain. As for increased labour to teachers in regard to the addition of a new subject, they were really as much obliged to learn this branch of knowledge now as they would be if the suggestion of the hon. Member for Maidstone was carried out. They were not absolutely compelled to learn it now, nor would they be compelled if the suggestion were adopted. In the 4th Schedule, for the teacher there were several alternative subjects—those which they might study, and for which they would get marks, but which were not compulsory. The elements of physical science formed a part of those subjects, and a knowledge of them was implied, sufficient to qualify for teaching young classes. Then, the higher mathematics formed one of those possible subjects which were not compulsory. By Article 21 of the Code a grant of 4s. was given to every scholar who passed a satisfactory examination in two of the specific subjects. One of those specific subjects was elementary science. In the table of Schedule 4 there would be found the subjects physiology, mechanics, and botany, these more than covering the proposed addition. Well, if the managers wanted their teachers to earn the money for elementary science under Article 21, they would say they must have a scientific teacher in the same way as if what was proposed by the hon. Member for Maidstone was carried out an elementary scientific teacher would be required. It would, in either case, depend on the managers, and they would be as likely to adopt the same course in one case as the other; and there was, practically, just as much pressure brought on the teacher in regard to these special subjects now as before. He believed the real difficulty lay in defining the lessons to be given, and the actual practical difficulty of bringing science into the standard of examination. In Article 28 there was a technical subject list. When they got into Standard 4 they found they had optional examinations in grammar, geography, and history, with definitions of the requirements under the different heads. Well, the difficulty would be imposed on the Department of having something corresponding with this de- finition. He believed his hon. Friend had hit the difficulty—namely, that the Inspectors were more ignorant of science than anything else. Many of the Members of that House felt that they had not been properly taught elementary science. But he believed that was not an insuperable difficulty. Let them obtain from Germany an exact statement of the operation of the law as to these examinations. If his hon. Friend went to a Division he would support him; but he would advise him not to do so, as he wanted the Department to consider the subject thoroughly for another year. He would repeat, in a word, the argument of the hon. Member for Maidstone. He had said that, in this class examination, they should give 2s. or 4s. to each scholar of 17 years of age if they passed an elementary examination on certain subjects. He did not think that would interfere with the needlework included in the present programme; and, so far as the rest of it went, it would mean that with the boys science and history would be taken instead of grammar and history, or science and geography instead of grammar and geography. The only question was this—Was elementary science as desirable as these other three subjects? Well, he liked the study of history and geography, but he did not think it was more necessary than science; and those who thought the acceptance of this proposal would lead to cost were wrong, because it would merely be the substitution of one subject for another. Well, he did not see why important results should not be produced in many districts by the adoption of this proposal. He was convinced that, if more attention was given to this subject, the difficulties which at first presented themselves would disappear. He would conclude by making this suggestion—that the Department should find out between now and next Session how this was done in Germany, and should tell the Inspectors that they must acquire a little knowledge of elementary science in order that they might be able to conduct examinations in natural science.

Question put.

The House divided:—Ayes 80; Noes 48: Majority 32.—(Div. List, No. 199.)