HC Deb 19 February 1895 vol 30 cc1090-1

I beg to ask the Vice President of the Committee of Council on Education, whether he is aware that, in consequence of the present severe state of the weather, and the state of the roads in scattered rural districts, the attendance of the children in such districts, where they are compelled to go some distance to the elementary school, is very seriously affected, as compared with urban schools; whether, notwithstanding, the register has to be marked, thereby adversely affecting the grant; and, whether he will consider the desirability of modifying the existing regulation under such special circumstances as at present exist?


I am aware of the circumstances mentioned by the hon. Member. Country schools at a time like this certainly need lenient treatment. I think, however, that the case will be adequately met by the measures I have already mentioned. In cases where schools have been, necessarily closed in consequence of the severity of the weather, a proportionately smaller number of school meetings than the 400 now required as a minimum will be accepted as qualifying for the grant; and I am issuing instructions to Her Majesty's Inspectors that, in assessing the grants, they should judge leniently schools now shortly to be inspected, whose efficiency has been temporarily impaired in consequence of irregular attendance caused by the recent inclement weather.