MR. H. ROBERTS (Denbighshire, W.)
I beg to ask the Vice President of the Committee of Council on Education whether he will state what is the present position of the Denbighshire Intermediate Education Scheme; whether he is aware that two material alterations have been recently made by the House of Lords in the scheme—namely, the omission of Clause 87, Sub-section (b), providing that the formularies of no particular denomination should be used in the boarding houses of the county schools, and the exclusion of that portion of the scheme which related to Ruthin Grammar School; whether a scheme, dealing with this school under the Endowed Schools Acts, was framed and passed in 1886 by the Charity Commissioners, and whether his attention has been drawn to a circular issued by the Governors in 1888, declaring that the school was undenominational, and that the pupils were not subject to any religious test; whether any Petition was lodged to test the legality of any provision in the scheme dealing with the Ruthin School before the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council; whether in the case of the Denbighshire scheme the requirements of the Welsh Intermediate Education Act, 1889, were complied with by the authorities responsible for framing the scheme; and whether he can state the best course to pursue in order to secure, without religious restrictions, secondary and technical education for girls as well as boys in the Ruthin Intermediate School district?
§ MR. ACLAND
The period of two months during which this scheme has to lie before Parliament expire to-day. The scheme has been altered in another place, as stated in Paragraph 2 of the question. The Ruthin Grammar School is, under a scheme framed under the Endowed Schools Acts and approved by Her Majesty in 1881, an undenominational school. I have seen a circular issued by the Bishop of St. Asaph, Mr. Cornwallis West, Sir John Puleston, and others, stating that the school is undenominational. The Charity Commissioners are of opinion that the requirements of the Act were complied with in framing the scheme, and no Petition has been lodged to have the legality of any part of the scheme tried before the Judicial Committee. I think the best course to pursue will be that, after the scheme has received Her Majesty's approval, the Joint Education Committee should confer with the County Governing Body to be established under the scheme, with the view of considering what, if any, further proposals they should make to the Charity Commissioners.