§ MR. JAMES TUITE (Westmeath, N.)
I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland whether any complaints have reached the Commissioners of National Education with reference to the condition of the Multy-farnham (County Westmeath) National Schools, that the buildings are in a most dilapidated condition, and the out-offices in such an unsanitary state as to be dangerous to the health of the pupils and teachers; whether he is aware that as a consequence a number of children have ceased attending those schools, to the loss of the teachers, during the past three years, and are obliged to travel long distances to other ones; also that there is but one playground for the children of both sexes attending the schools; and, whether, if the condition of the schools is as stated, immediate steps will be taken to have them put in proper repair?
§ MR. GERALD BALFOUR
The reports of both the manager and inspector on the condition of these school premises are very unsatisfactory, and it is a fact that there has been a falling off in the attendance of pupils at the school 1625 during the past few years. The playground is as stated in the Question. The school was vested some years ago in trustees who are now all dead, and correspondence is proceeding as to the appointment of new trustees. Should suitable persons be found willing to undertake the duties, and should the necessary local contributions be forthcoming, the Commissioners would be prepared to grant aid towards the cost of providing out-offices and effecting other necessary improvements.