§ MR. CALDWELL (Glasgow, St. Rollox)
asked the Lord Advocate, Whether it is the case that the rateable value of the parish of Barvas, in the Highlands of Scotland, amounts to only £2,908, whilst the population numbers 5,325; whether the school rate is 5s. 4d. per £1 of the rateable value; as much as 4s. 3d. per £1 being required to meet the charges of the building account; whether he is aware that the Parochial Board has declined to assess for a higher school rate than 1s. per £1 of rental, which brings in only £145, as against £1,100, the estimated expenditure for the current 972 year, and that a young lady teacher has been put out of her lodgings owing to her inability to pay them, the inability being caused by her not having received a single penny of salary since the 15th of May last; how long these facts have been known to the Scotch Education Department; whether the members of the School Board have all resigned; and, what steps the Scotch Education Department propose to take to carry on the work of education in Barvas Parish?
THE SOLICITOR GENERAL FOR SCOTLAND (Mr. M. T. STORMONTH DARLING)(who replied) (Edinburgh and St. Andrew's Universities)
said: The facts stated by the hon. Member with regard to the rateable value, population, and amount of school-rate are, so far as the Scottish Education Department are aware, generally correct, although they are not prepared to pledge themselves as to the amount of the rate required for the special expenses referred to. The position of matters has been known to them, and has been under their careful consideration for some time. They have received no information with regard to the alleged resignation of the School Board of Barvas, or the facts stated with respect to the teacher referred to. The Scotch Education Department are in communication with the School Board in question and others similarly situated, and have completed proposals for dealing with the difficulties, which are now being submitted to these School Boards.
§ DR. CLARK (Caithness)
asked the Solicitor General, if he was also aware that the neighbouring parishes of Lochs and Uig were in the same position? He would further like to know by what means the Education Commissioners would know that these School Boards resigned?
§ MR. M. T. STORMONTH DARLING
said, with regard to the latter part of the Question, it was obvious that the School Boards might intimate their resignation to the Scotch Education Department; and that they had not yet done so. With regard to the former part of the Question, undoubtedly the position of these other School Boards which the hon. Member referred to was known to be serious, and was in the full view of the Education Department.