HC Deb 07 July 1881 vol 263 c241

asked the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, If he has had his attention called to the Report of the Commissioners of National Education in Ireland, for the year 1880, just placed in the hands of Members; whether he has noticed the following statement with reference to the great increase in the daily average attendance of pupils:— This unusually large increase of 33,503 in the average attendance is to a considerable extent due to the benevolent operations of the Committee organised by her Grace the Duchess of Marlborough, the Mansion House Committee, and the 'New York Herald' Committee, who, in the early part of the year, supplied clothing and rations of food to destitute children in the schools of the impoverished districts; and, whether, looking to the impossibility of dealing permanently with this sad form of want in Ireland by means of private benevolence, he will advise the Government to take into consideration the necessity for making some arrangement by which a ration of food shall be given daily, at the public expense, to destitute children attending school in the impoverished districts?


, in reply, said, that he had seen the extract quoted by the hon. Member, but feared that if he acted on the suggestion he should be introducing a most important change. To give daily rations of food at the public expense would virtually be to give outdoor relief, and the hon. Member would at once perceive the great danger of taking such a course.