§ Motion made, and Question proposed, "That a sum, not exceeding £705,771 (including a supplementary sum of £5,000), be granted to His Majesty, to complete the sum necessary to defray the Charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending on the 31st day of March, 1902, for the Expenses of the Commissioners of National Education in Ireland, including a Grant in Aid of the Teachers' Pension Fund, Ireland."
§ MR. JOHN REDMOND (Waterford)
The question which comes up for discussion on these Estimates is probably one of the most important affecting Ireland which can possibly engage the attention of the House of Commons, because it is no exaggeration at all to say that the well-being, happiness, and the prosperity of Ireland as a nation, it may almost be said the whole future of the Irish race, depends upon a proper system of primary education being given to Irish children. Sir, in our view, there is nothing in which England has been so guilty in the past in regard to Ireland as in its neglect in this matter 265 of education in Ireland. At one time education was used as an instrument by England to proselytise the people; it was used as an instrument to coerce the masses of the people of Ireland from their ancient religious beliefs, and, as we contend, education is being used in Ireland to-day as an instrument for the denationalisation of our people. On this Vote, which comes up for consideration this afternoon, we desire to enter our emphatic protest against the miscalled National Board of Education in Ireland. We assert the Board is unrepresentative in its character, that it is irresponsible, that it is anti-national, and that it does not possess any single atom of the confidence of the great mass of the people for whom it is supposed to work; and in addition to that we assert that this Board is incompetent, and has absolutely broken down in the working of the new system which has been inaugurated. The constitution of this Board is an anachronism; it has no parallel in England or Scotland, or in any country in Europe; and therefore we call for its reform. We believe that the Irish people have suffered in patience, and to a large extent indeed in silence, long enough, and we believe that the time has now come when the Irish people must make a united, determined effort to have the whole system and constitution of the Board systematically changed and reformed.
Let me try, very shortly, to establish some of the propositions I have laid down. I say that this Board is unrepresentative and irresponsible. The origin of this Irish Board of Education is singular indeed. I do not suppose that there are very many English or Scotch Members of this House who know that this Board was not created by an Act of Parliament. In the year 1831 it was called into existence by an administrative Act of the Lord Lieutenant of that day. The Chief Secretary of that time was Lord Stanley, who published a letter in which he said that a Commission of unpaid gentlemen had been appointed to carry on the work of education in Ireland. That was the origin of the Board, and from that day to this that Board has carried on its work uncontrolled by any statute. The constitution of the Board itself is absurd. 266 Up to 1831 no real effort had been made to attend to the educational wants of the masses of the Irish people. Therefore, it was only natural that when this Board was appointed, though it was eminently unsatisfactory in its character and constitution, that the prelates of the Catholic Church, to which the great mass of the children to be dealt with belong, should have done their best to take advantage of the system and to make the best of it. Consequently, we find that the Catholic Archbishop, Dr. Murray, accepted a seat on the Board, and for many long, weary, and patient years did his best to work the system with success. His Grace continued his efforts until his death, but all the time he was conscious of the absolute failure of the system, and I am certain that from Archbishop Murray's day until Archbishop Walsh was appointed a member of the Board, that Board did not receive any confidence from any portion of the people with whom it had to deal. When Archbishop Walsh was appointed the Board did obtain, for a few years, a certain amount of confidence, because, although the people of Ireland knew how the Board was constituted, they also knew that in Archbishop Walsh they had a man in complete sympathy with their sentiments and cognisant of their wants, and so long as he remained on the Board they were willing to go on living in hopes that he would reform the system and turn it into an instrument for the good of Ireland. But now that Dr. Walsh has resigned his seat, every atom of confidence of the people in that Board has departed. In 1831, when the Board was appointed, its constitution was most extraordinary. It consisted of three gentlemen belonging to the Protestant Church of Ireland, two belonging to the Protestant Dissenting Church, and two belonging to the Catholic Church. That was the Board brought into existence to look after the educational wants of the people of Ireland—five-sixths of whom were Catholics. At the present time, although the proportion has been changed, still it only stands at half Catholics and half Protestants, while the Catholic children to be dealt with are nine-tenths of the whole. That in itself is enough to rob the Board of the confidence of the mass of the people of Ire- 267 land. As I have said, that Board, as at present constituted, is a most extraordinary one. I would like to read out the names. The first is Lord Morris, who was an eminent Irish judge, but who no longer resides in Ireland, as he is now one of the Law Lords in England, and for whom consequently it is impossible to give that constant attendance and close attention necessary. Then there is Mr. Edmund G. Dease, a most estimable Catholic country gentleman, who does not reside in Dublin, and who has no special educational qualifications to entitle him to be on the Board at all, and who, so far as I know, has no connection with the work of education. Next we have Sir Malcolm J. Inglis, a Dublin trader—a Scotchman I believe. I am not sure that we would not do better if we had some other Scotchmen on the Board in place of some Englishmen, and even of some Irishmen. But Sir Malcolm J. Inglis has no real connection with education; he is simply a Dublin merchant, and obtained his title for eminent services to the Unionist party. Sir Percy R. Grace is a most estimable gentleman, but his best friends will not claim for him that he has any possible educational qualifications to entitle him to a seat on the Board. Next there is Mr. James Morell, about whom I know very little, but I rather think he was an official of the Education Board at one time. There are Dr. Traill, Sir Rowland Blennerhassett, Sir T. Bellingham, another Catholic country gentleman, living in a distant part of Ireland, who has no educational qualifications whatever, C. Palles, Lord Chief Baron, an exceedingly able judge, and who, I will take the liberty of saying, is by universal consent a most upright man.
I may pause here for a moment to repeat the protest which has been made from these benches for twenty-five years, since the days of Isaac Butt, against putting eminent judges on Boards of this kind, because they have other duties to perform, and cannot give the time necessary for the work. Then come the Rev. H. Evans, a Protestant clergyman; his hon. Judge Shaw; the Rev. Dr. Hamilton Wilson, a Protestant; the most Rev. Dr. Walsh, who has now resigned; Professor Dowden, Trinity College; the Rev. Dr. Bernard, Trinity 268 College; Dr. Archdale, Dr. Starkie, and another judge, Mr. Justice Gibson. The charge I make against the constitution of this Board is that there are four judges upon it. That is an improper thing; they should be attending to their own business. The fact that they are able and upright judges is no qualification for a seat on the Education Board. The rest of the Board is made up of business men, traders, and country gentlemen, who, living out of Dublin, could not attend to the work of the Education Board. Out of the whole twenty gentlemen on that Board, to whom is entrusted what is called the national education of the country, there was only one Nationalist, the most Rev. Dr. Walsh, who has now resigned, so that this Board of National Education at the present moment consists of nineteen gentlemen, amongst whom there is not a single representative of Irish national sentiment or opinion. Moreover, there is no representative element at all on this Board. These gentlemen are nominated by the Lord Lieutenant. It is equally true to say that it is an irresponsible Board. We have to vote the money necessary to enable them to carry on their work, but except for that it is not responsible to this House. It has no one to speak for it in the House. The Chief Secretary is not responsible. When questions are asked all that the Chief Secretary can do is to write to the Board for their statement, and put it before the House. That I am assured has no parallel in England or Scotland. The time has arrived in this country when it has been held right that the mass of the people, whose interests are at stake and who provide the money for education, should have some voice in the management of educational affairs. Here you have got school boards, and also in Scotland; and even in regard to the Board of Education in London an Act was passed a couple of years ago associating with that Board of Education a consultative council, not so representative in its character as we could wish, but still a consultative council upon which were put, from different educational establishments in the country, a number of men who by universal admission are eminently qualified to deal with educational matters, so that in regard to the 269 central educational authority in the country you had made some effort to associate representatives with the nominated members. I defy anyone to point to any country in Europe where there is a board of education, carrying on the work of education, constituted in the way that the Board of Education in Ireland is. I have said that this Board is thoroughly anti-national. That is a serious accusation to make against it, and if it is true that this Board is out of touch and sympathy with the national feelings and the national sentiments of the masses of the people, it must stand to reason that it is disqualified for the performance of its duties.
What, Sir, has been the history of this Board? It has from its very inception set itself apparently the deliberate policy of trying to deny to Ireland a knowledge of Irish history, and whatever small improvements may have been made recently are largely owing to the exertions of Dr. Walsh. The fact remains that during all the decades when it has been at work since 1831 it has excluded everything Irish—Irish history, Irish literature, and Irish poetry—as far as it was possible to do so from their thoughts, and while the young children of Irish peasants were taught English history, French history, and the glories of Spain in the olden days, they were taught nothing of the history of their own country until quite recently, and even at this moment, notwithstanding the improvements which have been made, grave cause of complaint still remains, and it is not only with reference to the history of Ireland. The House is familiar from recent discussions that it is only within the last few months, by virtue of the vigorous agitation on foot in Ireland, that we have been able to force the Board of National Education to permit Irish to be taught to young children, even in the Irish-speaking districts of the country. I say that this Board has been all through its career absolutely out of sympathy with the great masses of the people, and that it is anti-national. In my opinion the time has come when it is the duty of Ireland to grapple with the question of the constitution of the Board. It is no part of my business to sketch out any plan for that reform; all I would say is, that I believe 270 Ireland is entitled to have on the educational authority which manages the education of children some representation of the people. Whether that representation comes from county councils or in some other way it is not for me to say, but it is a ridiculous anachronism that the whole educational affairs of Ireland should be left in the hands of a body on which the mass of the Irish people have no representation at all. Now for years, we have been in Ireland comparatively silent on all these matters. We have remained silent because, as I stated, we saw on that Board one man, at any rate, who was in sympathy with the mass of the people, who understood their wants, and who, we knew, was making a gallant battle for justice and right. During the years that Dr. Walsh was on the Board he performed most marvellous work; he it was who practically initiated the Manual Instruction Commission, on the report of which the recent reform of primary education in Ireland has been very largely based. To him I attribute almost entirely the fact that the system of payment by results has been abolished, and that a great reform has taken place in the system of education in the country. And certainly to him is due the credit off having caused the Irish language to be taught, of the beating down of the vigorous opposition he had to face in that Board, and of having succeeded in some degree in enabling the young children of the country to learn the ancient language of their race. But the odds against Dr. Walsh have proved too much for him, and he has now resigned his position on the Board in despair and in disgust, and with him, as I stated before, all confidence in this Board has absolutely disappeared. The circumstances that surround the resignation of Dr. Walsh prove to demonstration that the whole Education Office has broken down. The circumstances disclose the most extraordinary state of chaos, confusion, and incompetence. They prove the utter hopelessness of reforming this body from within, and it is necessary for me to place before the Committee, as shortly as I can, the circumstances which have compelled him at last to throw up his task in despair. If he has failed in his attempt to turn this into a useful instrument of education, the fault certainly 271 is not with him. He has been patient and he has shown admittedly extraordinary ability, industry, and devotion, and the moral of the whole transaction is that, if he resigns in despair, it means that the whole system is doomed as hopeless.
Now, Dr. Walsh's chief charge, upon which he has severed his connection with the Board, is only one of many instances which he has assured us he could produce, but the charges he has put forward are in themselves sufficiently great and extraordinary to warrant us in making here to-day a united demand for an immediate public inquiry. The chief charge which the archbishop made is this—that misleading, inaccurate, and unauthorised letters on matters deeply affecting the rights of thousands of teachers in Ireland have been issued in the names of the Commissioners without their knowledge and without their authority, wrongly interpreting the rules that they themselves had laid down, and falsifying the public promises they had given. Now, that is a very serious charge. Let me explain exactly what occurred. When the system of paying teachers by results was abolished, it was necessary immediately to form some basis whereby the payments could be made for the period immediately following the change. There were 13,000 of these teachers in Ireland, and it was promised both in and out of Parliament that under the new system they would obtain salaries equal to their incomes under the old system, and in order, therefore, accurately to determine how much the new income would be, it was necessary to make an elaborate calculation in each case, because the remuneration under the system of payment by results could not be ascertained all in a day. It was most properly and wisely decided to take the average income received by these teachers for the three years preceding the change, and to pay them that, but of course it was obvious to everybody that if that were made a hard and fast rule, it would work injustice in innumerable cases, and the Board, very properly, made a proviso that in every case where a special claim was made for equitable consideration of the circumstances, that consideration would be given by the Board, and, there- 272 fore, that the average of the three years income was to be taken rather as an expedient and a temporary arrangement, subject, where complaint was made, to inquiry into special circumstances when they were alleged to exist. Now it turned out, as a matter of fact, that about 2,700 of the 13,000 teachers did make this claim for special consideration—a large number, it may be said, but I do not think it is an unexpectedly large number. I do not take the view at all that the officials were justified in thinking that there would be less than two or three thousand special claims out of the 13,000. At any rate, there is the fact that 2,700 made claims to special consideration. What happened? These claims were never brought before the Board. Not a single one of them. But a subordinate official in the office—I may mention his name, because it does come out in the documents which have already been published—a Mr. Young, who is what is called Assistant Financial Secretary, on his own responsibility and without the authority or the knowledge of the Board, took it upon himself to sift these applications, and put on one side a few of them, a hundred or so, which he thought deserving of consideration, and to write letters from the office in the names of the Commissioners to the remaining cases, saying that the Commissioners could not and would not consider their claims. A more preposterous proceeding was never heard of, and it was not until Dr. Walsh began to receive from some of these applicants complaints that they had been treated in this way, and copies of the letters, that he, as one of the Commissioners, learned for the first time of what was going on. This is a matter which affects the good faith and honour of the Commissioners, and I would like to be allowed to read to the House Dr. Walsh's own points—I want to point out as shortly as I can that these official letters to which I refer seem to me to have been written by persons wholly unacquainted with the rules of the Board. Acting as an individual Commissioner of National Education, I have done my best to put a stop to sending out such letters. The Resident Commissioner, I feel confident, has done his part, but seems to be as powerless in this matter as his colleagues on the Board.Nothing remained, therefore, but to call public attention to the state of affairs, and accordingly the archbishop adopted 273 that course. In an interview which the archbishop gave to a pressman, he expressed himself even more strongly on the subject, and, replying to the allegation that the letters were authorised by the Board, said—Anyone of common intelligence ought to be able to see that that story is the merest fiction. It is a very stupid fiction. There is no authority in any official independently of the authority of the Board. The letter is unauthorised. But that is only a sample, an illustration, of the state of confusion in which we are now placed.I say that this state of things discloses a state of chaos so complete, and points to interests imperilled so great, that the Archbishop of Dublin, if I may be allowed to say so, was bound to resign his position on that Board, and bound to make the demand for a public inquiry, as he did.
What have the Board done in this matter? They had issued one of the most extraordinary official documents I have ever read. They issued on Thursday a memorandum in answer to the charges of the archbishop, and, in compliance with a request made by one of my hon. friends, they had condescended to produce a copy of the minutes they passed dealing with this matter. I will say in one word what the defence was as put forward in that precious memorandum. Their defence was an admission of the offence. In this memorandum they admitted the offence, and they put forward the miserable plea that they were overworked, and had so many thousands of letters to attend to, and they used the phrase that if a subordinate official did improperly interpret the rules, and make statements he had no right to make in the name of the Commissioners, after all his offence was a venial one. [The hon. Member then read the memorandum, and continued]: In a serious matter of this kind I never read a more trivial and indeed a more impudent defence. Here is a case where a subordinate official has, in the name of the Commissioners, without their knowledge and without their authority, been giving decisions on cases submitted to them in direct contradiction of the most solemn assurance given by the Commissioners themselves to the teachers when the new scheme was introduced, and we are told that 274 this was a trivial error of judgment. The statements in that memorandum invest this whole matter with a still greater gravity than it was invested with by the difference of opinion as to the action of this official by the archbishop, because it is clear now that although the Commissioners, when Archbishop Walsh was on the Board introducing this new system, declared that cases in which the Commissioners might deem it inequitable to fix the future income on the basis of the average income for the past three years would be specially considered, they were now apparently anxious to recede from that position and to pretend that the teachers who claim equitable consideration are not under the terms of that promise entitled to have their case considered by the Board or mentioned to the Board. In my opinion that raises a grave and important question. It affects the salaries to be received by more than 3,000 teachers of Ireland, and if the archbishop had no other justification for his resignation than his determination to protect the interests and just rights of these 3,000 teachers I think he would have earned the gratitude of every just man by his action. The minutes passed by the Board were of the most extraordinary character. They show that at one time the Board were inclined to censure the official who was guilty of these malpractices, because I find that, on the 18th June, the archbishop gave notice of a motion really of the most innocent and lenient character, to the effect that, wherever an inaccurate and misleading statement had been sent out by this official, in every such case the same official should write a letter informing the recipient that the letter was to be withdrawn on the score of inaccuracy, and substitute for it a letter written strictly in accordance with the rules of the Board. On the archbishop being heard on the matter that motion was passed. The minutes go on to say that after a statement by the Archbishop of Dublin and subsequent discussion it was agreed that the Resident Commissioner should convey to Mr. Young the views of the Commissioners in regard to his functions as Financial Assistant Secretary, and that measures be taken to secure that, in notifying 275 the income fixed by the Department for the various teachers under the new rules, the managers be made aware that the Commissioners have power to consider specially cases in which, in their judgment, any of the new rules, 36 to 42, would operate inequitably. But when the minutes come to be examined, at the next meeting of the Board, at which the archbishop was not present, the Lord Chief Baron moved the following Amendment—That the views referred to in the minute he stated explicitly, and, further, that Mr. Young be directed in the future to send out the circular settled by the Resident Commissioner.That Amendment was defeated by a considerable majority of the Board. At the next meeting of the Board (2nd July) a letter was received from the archbishop, which he asked should be inserted in the minutes. In that letter the archbishop purported to give an account of what took place at the first meeting, and he said that it was agreed amongst other things—That the Financial Assistant Secretary should be informed that the view taken by Mm of his official duties, as stated in his printed memorandum to the Resident Commissioner, was incorrect, and that he was not justified in taking the course which in that memo. he "maintained" that he was justified in taking, namely, keeping back from the consideration of the Commissioners, and acceding on his own authority, case, in which special consideration by the Commissioners was claimed under Rule 43.That letter was inserted in the minutes at the request of the archbishop, but a most insulting Amendment was put side by side with it. On the motion of Dr. Bernard it was decided—That the Board, while entering the archbishop's letter on their minutes at his Grace's request, desire to place beside it their dissent from his Grace's statement that an "agreement" was arrived at by the Board of June 18, as to the point in his Grace's letter. No such resolution as to the conduct of the Financial Secretary as is indicated by his Grace was passed by the Commissioners; nor was any such censure on that officer approved formally or informally by the Board of June 18. The Commissioners do not feel it necessary or desirable to criticise the archbishop's letters on other points, but they are not to be taken as agreeing with his Grace's sentiments because they do not explicitly state that they dissent from them.That is to say, they declared that the first Amendment of the 18th June with 276 reference to Mr. Young was not a vote of censure upon him, and that the archbishop's contention on it was wrong. Under these circumstances it seems to me there was no course open to the archbishop except to resign his position on that Board. This, however, is not the only instance the archbishop gave of the incapacity and mismanagement of the Board. Another circular was issued, signed by the two secretaries of the Board, to all the vacant schools throughout the diocese of Dublin and probably throughout the whole country. The archbishop's attention was called to this circular, and on making inquiries he found that though it had been issued in the secretaries' names, the secretaries had never seen or signed it, and of course had never approved it. What was the defence the Commissioners set up in the memorandum? They said it was ridiculous to make a mountain out of a molehill—it was only a clerical error which might occur in any office, and which it was only natural would occur in an office overburdened as this office was by the putting of the new scheme into force. In the first place they said that this was an isolated copy of the circular obtained by the archbishop, and that there had been a mistake in that particular circular, that the name of Seamour, the old secretary, whose name appeared in this old form, had been struck out and the name of the new secretary put in. I hold in my hand a telegram from the archbishop which traverses every one of those statements. It says—The Commissioners' extraordinary document committing them to statements on matters quite outside their knowledge is hopelessly inaccurate. Take one specimen—the convent circular. The implication representing the blunder as a chance clerical error is not true. It must have been assumed that I had got only one copy and that this excuse could be safely made. I have now here numerous copies of the circular sent to convents of the diocese, issued even in different months, and the same stupid blunder is in all. Moreover, the explanation given about printed forms and erasure and substitution of signatures is quite inapplicable. All the copies I have here are typewritten, not printed, including the various dates and the secretaries' signatures without erasure or substitution. I showed the resident Commissioner the first of them that I got. He should therefore know the statement in the memorandum is untrue. Besides, my published letter of the 2nd July distinctly stated that the circular is typewritten. As to Secretary Lemas, you may quote the following, written 277 to me on the 22nd of June, pleading illness:—'I have not been able to send you a full memorandum of the clumsy method of payment of the convents adopted as a short cut last year, and on the most extraordinary circular issued in Mr. Hamilton's name and my name without any sanction or knowledge on our part, and the still more extraordinary manner in which the circular was filled.Besides the testimony of the archbishop, there is that of the Secretary "Lemas" himself. He writes to the archbishop complaining of the issue of those extraordinary circulars, and stating that they were issued without his sanction, and that he did not know of them. The whole system has broken down, and now that the one man who seemed capable of getting any good out of it has departed, the Irish withdraw all their confidence from it, and Parliament has now to consider the question of how this body could be reformed by introducing into it a representative element. The case I have detailed is ample justification of this reform. I know that in claiming this reform we will have to work for it, and perhaps wait for it, but I hope the Irish people will take an opportunity now to commence an agitation which will make the reform absolutely necessary in the near future. The claim I put forward today, for which I want satisfaction here and now, is not the reform of this body, but that the Chief Secretary will grant an immediate, searching and public inquiry into this matter. A great educational crisis has arisen in the Education Office of Ireland. In dealing with Dr. Walsh we are not dealing with an ordinary man. Dr. Walsh is the most capable, the best qualified, the best and most devoted of all Commissioners, and his resignation means the final and complete breakdown of that body. I do not know what the right hon. Gentleman is going to say, but I think he will agree that Dr. Walsh's loss is irreparable, and it will be impossible without a searching inquiry to continue this Board, discredited in Ireland to-day by the fact that the one man who ever got any good out of it has resigned. If the right hon. Gentleman has any regard for the Irish people whom he has been sent to rule in his own land, or for Irish education, his course to-night is plain. His bounden 278 duty is to grant the inquiry that is demanded of him, so that in a public, searching, and open inquiry the truth can be sifted, and the interests of Irish education safeguarded.
§ Motion made, and Question put, "That Item A (Salaries and Wages) be reduced by £1,000."—(Mr. John Redmond.)
§ MR. T. W. RUSSELL (Tyrone, S.)
said that with regard to the first portion of the speech of his hon. and learned friend he almost wholly agreed. The history of education in Ireland had been of a rather chequered nature, and a sad business. It was at one time a penal offence to admit Roman Catholics to education at all, and that was not long ago. Before the National Board was instituted the Irish people had the choice of either being educated at the hedge school or not at all, and the clergy and gentry went abroad for their education. Lord Stanley's idea of forming a great national system was in his opinion one of the happiest things of the time. It was one of the first symptoms that the Government realised that they had some duty towards the people of Ireland. After seventy years experience—because it had practically been in operation that period—friend and foe alike would admit that it had done a great work for the country. It might have been founded on a wrong basis according to some; it might have been indifferently administered according to others; but no one would deny that the work done had been a great work, and spoke well for Lord Stanley's memory. When it was founded it started under happy and fair auspices. He agreed with everything the hon. and learned Gentleman had said about Dr. Murray, the Roman Catholic Archbishop at that time. Every man who chose to look into the history of the period would find that, where ever there was anything to be done for the good of Ireland, Dr. Murray was in the work; and it was a very happy thing indeed that Lord Stanley found in the Catholic Archbishop of Dublin of that day a willing coadjutor in the scheme. Dr. Whately, the Protestant Archbishop of Dublin, who was immensely 279 in advance both of his time and people, joined the Board, although most of his own people were hostile to it. Dr. Carlisle, who was a Presbyterian Minister in Dublin—a man of wide sympathies—also took a seat at the Board, and it would be admitted from the first the Presbyterians had been the strongest supporters of the mixed system. He had stated that it was started under somewhat happy and fair auspices. Now he was going to speak perfectly plainly. Hon. Members might not agree with him, but they must agree to differ. He came to pretty much the same conclusion as his hon. and learned friend, but by his own way. It must be perfectly plain to the Committee that the system worked fairly well so long as Archbishop Murray represented the Catholics of Ireland. A complete change took place in the system when Archbishop Cullen arrived in Dublin from Armagh. The whole of what would be called the liberalism of Archbishop Murray vanished, and the undiluted ultra montanism of Cardinal Cullen took its place, and from that day down to the present time the system had undoubtedly worked with much friction. Model schools were attacked, the training college was looked at askance, and altogether a different system began to prevail. Well, the system was never accepted by the Catholics as an ideal system. The Catholics of Ireland, as the Catholics of England, demanded a religious basis for education. They demanded more. They were in favour of the teaching of dogmatic Christianity. He knew their standpoint, and, living in a Catholic country, he had learned to appreciate it. He was a member of the Birmingham Education League, but he had learned that Catholics had as much right to govern their own country in education as the English people had. The Catholics accepted those schools, not as their ideal in education, but because at the time it was a great step towards any education at all, and because, under the circumstances, it was the best thing they could get. That was a different thing; and they ought to remember, though a section of English people did not always remember it, that the system was a compromise from the first, and was a compromise now, and if it broke down 280 the National Board must go out of existence.
He agreed entirely with the hon. and learned Member with regard to the character and constitution of the Board. It was an evil habit in Ireland to put judges upon everything. He must not be taken as saying anything against the judges on the National Board, for whom he had great regard and respect; but it was one of the evil habits of the English Government in Ireland to place judges upon all these nominated boards. Judges on the National Board was a peculiarly bad development of that habit, and for this reason. The question of education in Ireland, as in England, was a poiltical one. What business had the Irish judges to be in politics at all? What right had they to be travelling up the backstairs of Dublin Castle? A judge appointed to the Bench should stick to his own job; he was well paid for it, and had precious little to do in Ireland. Let him avoid the thorny political issues which arose in nothing half so much as in the education of the people of Ireland. In their own time there had been trouble about the Christian Brothers. The judges intervened in these purely political issues, and had to take a stand on one side or the other. He asserted, not only as regarded the National Board, but as regarded all boards in Dublin, that the judges should be cleared out bag and baggage to do their own work. He was told by the right hon. Gentleman that some judges did two days' work in one, but he would soon settle that if he were allowed to alter the rota. In any event, it was the most wasteful way of employing judges to put them on those boards. He agreed with his hon. and learned friend that with the exception of Professor Dowden there was no recognised educationist on the National Board. He certainly did not think that Professor Traill was an educationist. He was too much occupied with the compulsory sale of land to take any interest in education, and the last place he was fit for was the Board of Education. He agreed that the whole system was radically wrong. The Board declined to teach history. When he was younger he often wondered why; but since studying the history of Ireland he had come to the conclusion that there 281 were very good reasons for it. For seventy years after the Union between the two countries the history of Ireland was a history of neglect and oppression, and the lives of the people were one long-drawn-out misery. He could now understand why history was not taught. As for the Irish language, did the Board help in its revival? Not in the slightest. Classes for the teaching of Irish were being formed all over his own constituency, and he rejoiced in it. It might do a little good; it could not possibly do any harm, and so far as Archbishop Walsh's efforts to revive the Irish language were concerned, he hoped they would continue and extend. Having agreed with his hon. and learned friend so far, he was afraid he must part company with him on the issue as it affected what was called the "office." What had been taking place for the last year or eighteen months in Ireland? A great and beneficent revolution had taken place, some of which was due to the work of Archbishop Walsh. Anyone who was inside a public department knew what that meant as regarded the staff. He had the felicity of serving in a public department for five years, and if anyone had gone into the Local Government Board after the passing of the Local Government Act of 1888 or of 1894, and had seen the state of that office and the difficulty that existed in carrying out the intentions of Parliament, he would realise what had been going on at the office in Marlborough Street during the last twelve months. It was important to remember that the work of the Financial Secretary had been delegated to him by the Board.
A great Department of State could not be worked on the principle laid down by his hon. and learned friend. What had happened here? An alteration was made in the method of paying 13,000 teachers, and they could not be kept out of their salaries while matters were being discussed between the Treasury and Marlborough Street. A plan had to be devised, and the Commissioners took the average of the previous three years, and they stated that if cases occurred in which that would not be an equitable settlement, there would be an appeal to the Commissioners, and the Commissioners under- 282 took to act as a court of appeal and to recommend such cases for, what is called in ordinary language, the consideration of the Treasury. He should not like to be subject to the consideration of the Treasury, but that was what occurred. Something like 3,000 appeals came in. He put it to the Committee— was it to be supposed that those 3,000 appeals were to be taken into the Board room, where twenty gentlemem met once a week, and that the Commissioners themselves were to adjudicate on every one of them? Did anyone imagine that that would be done in similar circumstances in any Department of the State. He would tell the hon. and learned Gentleman what took place in many instances. As in the case of the Financial Secretary to the National Board, powers were delegated to heads of departments. It did not follow, for example, with reference to everything that went out with the signature of the Secretary to the Local Government Board, that he had ever seen it. Hundreds of circulars and replies went out every week which the secretary, not to speak of the Local Government Board, never saw. It was done on the following principle. All matters of routine were dealt with in the sub-department where they arose, and letters were sent out, which were never seen by the secretary of the Board. He was giving hon. Members his own experience. Other questions, not of routine, but involving matters of principle, which had been settled by precedent, were dealt with by the head of the department, and letters were sent out regarding them which the Secretary never saw, although in all probability his signature was attached to them. There were other questions involving difficulty or doubt on matters of policy, and the replies regarding these should be submitted at least to the secretary, and very often it was the Parliamentary representative of the department who decided them. He put it to hon. Gentlemen opposite—could 3,000 appeals be dealt with by the Commissioners themselves? In this case there were 3,000 letters from teachers. Archbishop Walsh himself said that the teachers commenced writing to the Commissioners individually, a very bad habit, and they wrote a larger number 283 probably to Archbishop Walsh than to any other Commissioner, and what did Archbishop Walsh say in regard to these appeals? He stated that in nearly all the cases in which appeals had been made to him there was nothing in the appeal. [Mr. WYNDHAM: Hear, hear.] The Financial Secretary went through these three thousand cases of appeal with patience, went through every one of them, separated them one from the other, reserved something like 300 to come before the Resident Commissioner, and he, on his own initiative, believing either that the question was settled by precedent or that there was really nothing in the appeals, as Archbishop Walsh said, decided these cases. Now that was a matter that would be treated in precisely the same way in any State Department in England or Scotland. He desired to speak with every respect for Archbishop Walsh and of his work on the Board, but he did not think his Grace should ever have been on the Board, and, taking the case stated in the newspapers and in this Blue-book, he did not think his Grace had made out his case for a public inquiry. As to the circular in regard to convent schools, it was quite clear that a mistake was made, but mistakes had been made in every great Department, but this was not a case which, in his opinion, need be met by an inquiry. He wished to make that perfectly clear.
He thought, however, that on general grounds the case against this Board was overwhelming. His difficulty was that the system was founded upon a mixed basis, the fundamental rule for seventy years being that there must be combined secular and separate religious instruction, and what he lamented was that his Grace should ever have taken a seat upon the Board, the fundamental principle of which he was not in harmony with. It was well known that the Catholic clergy throughout Ireland were in favour of religious education. They had a right to believe in it, and they had a right to have it; but he could not understand how the archbishop came to take a seat on the Board to administer a system of which he did not approve, and of which he was one of the leading opponents. That was his difficulty. Let him frankly state his belief 284 that it was not an inquiry that was required; it was a revolution. Just imagine twenty men, even the most eminent men in the world, and these were not, sitting in a back room in Marlborough Street, whom no one dare ask what it was they were doing. Their proceedings were private, and no one, not even the House of Commons—except of course when the Vote came up—had any control over them. The only parliamentary control was in the discussion of this Vote; and as only three days were given for Irish Supply, to discuss this Vote meant sacrificing the discussion on others, though there were scandals without number. England asserted the right to govern Ireland, but did not allow Irish Members the opportunity to discuss the methods of government. He submitted that this Board was not brought into existence by Act of Parliament. The Chief Secretary could not demand information from the Board; he must "request" information, and they could refuse to grant it. The whole thing was monstrous. They were in the House of Commons as the representatives of the Irish people, and Ireland would never be governed as it ought to be until those who administered the Government recognised that the representatives of the people were their masters and not their servants. He did not choose to go on bended knee to the National Board of Education and "request" information. They ought to receive it as a right.
The truth was, this Board was an effete institution. He was ahead of his hon. and learned friend for once, and was not sure that he attached much weight to his suggestion of popular representations on the Board. He was for sweeping away the whole of them. Why not have in Ireland an Education Department, as there was in Scotland and in England? Just fancy if there was a Minister of Education sitting on the Front Bench what a revolution it would make in six months—better still if he were an Irishman. This institution had done its work. He gave it credit for all it had done. They lived and learned; and things were not exactly to-day what they were seventy years ago in Ireland, and not what they were going to be ten years hence. The sooner this Govern- 285 ment made up their minds that there was a new life throbbing in Ireland, that they were not going to spend their lives discussing King's oaths or Catholic universities, or doctrines of transubstantiation, and whether certain hon. Gentlemen were idolaters or otherwise, the better it would be. In the future they were not going to spend time in discussing such questions, but to work as a harmonious and united people for the benefit and welfare of Ireland, and these effete institutions and these nominated boards must and would go. All that was settled when a vote was given to every cottage and every cabin in Ireland. Some people might try to keep it back, as they were doing, but it was all coming in good time. They must have an Education Department instead of an irresponsible nominated board. His further view—and he was not sure how Members opposite would agree with it—was this. The passing of the Local Government Act of 1898 was a great revolution; and from the moment they gave to the people of Ireland the Parliamentary franchise, and conferred upon them the right of local self-government, things had passed into a new sphere. He desired to see an Education Department, with a responsible Minister, and school boards in every district. Hon. Members opposite were silent, but he held his view none the less firmly and clearly. Well, in Scotland there were Catholics as well as Protestants, and there was a school board in every parish in the country, but there was not a ripple on the water, and everything went smoothly. People got the education they desired, and controversy was silenced. That was his solution of the question. He did not believe there was a case for an inquiry. In time he believed people in Ireland would see that the only possible way to solve the question was as he stated it.
§ MR. THOMAS O'DONNELL (Kerry, W.)
said that they had been all delighted with the speech of the hon. Member for South Tryone. That hon. Gentleman had said that he did not think Dr. Walsh had made out a case for inquiry, but he maintained that the hon. Gentleman had made out the strongest possible case for an inquiry into the working of the Board of Education. The hon. Member 286 for South Tyrone had spoken of the good work accomplished in Scotland by the school boards, but he would remind the hon. Gentleman that the case of Scotland was different from that of Ireland. What the Irish people wanted was the right to the management of the education of their own children and to prepare them for the battle of life. Surely that was not a revolutionary demand; but, no matter how simple and how just it was, it had always been treated with contempt. He had listened with interest and with pleasure to the debate on the English Education Bill for two whole days that week; but, as an Irishman, he could not but feel sad to think that, while the minds of all people and nations were busy discussing, formulating, and improving schemes for the better education of the masses, they in Ireland were absolutely denied any voice or control in the educational system of their country. That had resulted in the pitiable condition of the Education Board, and of the education which had been administered by that Board. They had heard a great deal as to the way in which the Board had been instituted, and he did not wish to go into details as to the working of the Board during the past seventy years. The principle on which it was nominated was purely sectarian—half were Catholics, and half Protestants; but they were selected utterly regardless of their competency to perform the great work entrusted to them. There were judges and successful business men, but, with one solitary exception, no representative of the different schools in Ireland. He had heard an amusing story of how men came to be appointed to the Board. A certain gentleman—a Catholic by the way, and supposed to be a Nationalist—had been angling as hard as he could to get on to the Commission of the Peace in Ireland. It so happened that at that time there was a vacancy on the National Board of Education, and nobody was more surprised than that same gentleman when he got the announcement that, instead of being made a J.P., he was made a Commissioner of National Education! That was one instance of the manner in which their English masters tried to select men who were expected to devote their time to framing schemes of National Education 287 and administering them in proper form. He maintained that the system on which the members of the Board had been selected was a disgrace and an anachronism. In a country where three-fourths of the people were Catholics, and five-sixths of the majority were Nationalists, their feelings had been insulted and flouted. Not a single Nationalist representative had been appointed to the Board until Dr. Walsh had become a member. How was it that Dr. Walsh had been put on the Board? Was it because of his knowledge and ability as an educationalist, or was it that he was a thorn in the side of the Government which had appointed him, and which, perhaps, thought he would be quieter inside than outside the Board? The Irish representatives would be untrue to their country if they calmly tolerated year after year and generation after generation these endless insults. It was claimed by hon. Gentlemen opposite that Ireland was governed with equality, and sometimes it was even stated that Ireland was better governed than England; but would such a system of selection be tolerated in England? What would the English people say if the Board of Education in London consisted of nineteen Catholics and one Protestant? A storm of indignation would rise, and naturally and deservedly rise, up against such an unconstitutional system of selection; yet that was what Irishmen had had to submit to during the past seventy years, and they had come to this House that day to say that they were determined no longer to submit to it, and to claim that the education of their own children should be placed in their own hands. After all, the greatest wealth of the Irish nation was the genius and energy of her sons, and who were more interested in the welfare of these children and more anxious to rear them as Irishmen than their parents, and they demanded the reform or the abolition of this Board of Education which had really blocked education, and had made it impossible for Irishmen to live comfortably on the soil of their native land.
It had been said that the Irish people were unfit to govern themselves. He would remind the Committee that they had been but a short time entrusted with the duty of administering local self- 288 government in the country, and he thought their greatest enemies must admit that, despite their inexperience and want of training in self-government, and despite their lack of education, the county and district councils had been administered in a way which was a credit to their country. With that example before them it was surely not unjust or unreasonable to say that this demand for a further extension of local government should be granted. If the British Government were prepared to give to the people of Ireland the right to make roads and build bridges they could go a step further and give them control over the educational training of their children which was very much more important. During the horrible eighteenth century, when the penal laws were in force, those who possessed wealth were able to send their sons out of the country to get education, but the sons of the poor peasants had to go to the mountain sides and take shelter among the rocks. The history of those hundred years which no Englishman could read with pride was the strongest indictment of the misgovernment of Ireland. The story of that period had been told by a member of this House, and, although he differed from the Nationalists in politics, they were proud of him. That right hon. Gentleman had said that the government of Ireland had been such, if any legislation could, as to degrade the character and blast the prosperity of the nation. Despite the obstacles which had been thrown in the way of education, the people grew up intelligent and refined, and surely if the Irish, who loved education for its own sake when it was far from them, might be entrusted with the control of education.
He did not wish to go too fully into the particular question which had raised this debate, but they were dealing with a great crisis in the educational welfare of the country, and, if he might say so, they were thankful to the Chief Secretary for having at last let one ray of light into that office which had been so long hidden from the public. He hoped and believed this ray of light would show to the public the disgraceful way in which education had been managed. On the opposite side it had been said that a case had not been made 289 out why an inquiry should be held into the working of the Education Office. Having himself been trained in an undenominational college of the National Board where Protestants and Catholics lived together in harmony, it was not for him to speak too hardly of those places or the men who worked them, but even the Member for South Tyrone did not know as much as he himself must necessarily know of the way in which education had been mismanaged by that Board. The correspondence which had been published, and the statement drawn up by Dr. Starkie, proved conclusively that the working of the Board had broken down utterly and hopelessly. It was useless and hopeless to try to remedy it bit by bit. The only thing which would be successful would be the absolute sweeping away of the whole thing, and the substitution of a representative Board which would be responsible to the people and whose working would be known to the people. He hoped that when the working of the Board was thoroughly understood, Englishmen, who prated so loudly of their love of liberty and talked so glibly of constitutional and representative government, would come at last to see the reasonableness of the demand that this hopeless, insulting, anti-national system should be swept away. He knew the great ability and scholarship of Dr. Starkie, but there was something more required in the working of a Government Department. Dr. Starkie said the magnitude of the work could not be realised by anyone who had not had practical experience of the working of such an office. He might, in passing, ask whether Dr. Starkie devoted his whole time to this great work which he said it was impossible to cope with? His name was on another education board in Ireland, and he was a member of different commissions. He might well devote his time to the work which primarily concerned the Irish peasants. Had he done so the numerous letters which had been referred to would not have been handed over to officials to attend to. A number of statements had been made which he would not like to characterise in the manner in which he felt they ought to be, but he would brand them as being far from the truth.
He would go to another and perhaps 290 more important question. If the teachers had been teaching for six or eight months they were told by the office that the money which they claimed for that six or eight months work was not to be paid direct, but was to be included in the consolidated income. Well, the office was wrong, and they had to admit that they were wrong, and through the efforts of Archbishop Walsh the teachers were paid in full. He would give another instance of the mismanagement of the office. During the transition year an amount was due for what was known as the "Residual Grant." That grant amounted to £120,000, and seven teachers were paid out of it at the rate of 1s. per quarter per pupil to teach to the end of the year, and the balance was to be distributed to them afterwards. That balance amounted to different sums in different years. In 1895 it was 5s. 5d.; in 1896 it was 5s. 6d.; in 1897, 5s. 6d.; in 1898, 5s. 4d.; in 1899, 5s. 3d.; but the amount had been withheld from the teachers, the office having stated that it was not due. He held in his hand a letter from Dr. Walsh, in which it was proved to anyone who had the slightest knowledge of the elements of arithmetic that the money was due. The new scheme came into operation at the end of March, 1901, and numbers of schools were coming under the scheme in April and May. The schools were examined in June. The office said that the money was not due, though they said that if the old system had been continued it would be due. That was another instance of the bungling of the office, and hundreds of others might be quoted. The only thing which would compel the official Commissioners to do the work entrusted to them was to let in the light of public opinion on them, and surely that was not an unreasonable thing to demand. He did not want to go into technical details, but it was important that a few should be given to illustrate the general policy of the office. Under the new system established in Ireland the annual salary given to the educators of the children of the Irish people was the princely income of £56 per annum. For that amount they were supposed to be able to get men who were trained and educated for this great work. It was impossible to get good teachers for a salary for which the humblest 291 mechanic would scorn to do good work. That was one of the great blots on the new system, and which would render it impossible to give to the Irish children the education to which they were entitled, and which it was intended they should get. They felt that the time had come at last when Irishmen should have the opportunity of training their children so that when they went abroad, as unfortunately they had to do, either to this country or to America, they would be able to take their place, not as hewers of wood and drawers of water, but to develop their native faculties and energies and be a blessing to their country.
§ MR. RICHARDS (Finsbury, E.)
complained that English Members had not been put in possession of the correspondence which was evidently in the hands of the Irish Members, as it placed those English Members who took an interest in education at a disadvantage. It seemed to him to be a most lamentable thing that the Archbishop of Dublin should have resigned his position on the Irish Board of Education on a matter on which his Grace appeared to have been outvoted. He had come down to the House in response to an urgent whip, expecting a stormy sitting, but had found a reasonable grievance put forward by the Irish Members in quiet and mild speeches, save that of the hon. Member for South Tyrone. He would like the Irish Members to consider whether it was fair to attack a system which had been in existence for thirty or forty years with a Board consisting of half Catholics and half Protestants. He conceded, however, that there were many districts where the Catholics were in the ascendancy. He agreed with the hon. Member for South Tyrone that in Scotland they had solved the religious difficulty. They of the Church of England had not the same liberty in England as their coreligionists had in Scotland, for in the school board schools in Scotland they had the liberty and the right to read and to teach any catechism that they liked. He believed that it was perfectly true that both Protestants and Catholics in Ireland desired to preserve the denominational system. He supported the idea of an Irish Minister of Education; but he foresaw that there were difficulties in 292 the way. The Minister might not have a seat in the House, and if he were a Catholic the Protestants might be dissatisfied, and if he were a Protestant he might not be acceptable to the Catholics.
What the English Members wished to know was what the Irish Members wanted them to do with regard to this Board. Did they wish the Board to be swept away altogether? ["Hear, hear," from the Irish Benches.] Well, that was a definite statement. He was bound to admit that the Irish Members had grievances. He had visited some schools in Cork and elsewhere in Ireland, and he had been struck with the distances which the children had come to school, and the devotion of the teachers, and with the unfairness with which the Catholics were treated in Ireland in not being permitted to have the emblems of their religion in any of the public schools. That was a grievance that should be remedied, and he was quite sure that the Chief Secretary would have done it had he been able. Whenever the religious question came up certain Members took up a position which was not reasonable. It was the duty of the Conservative party to preserve the rights of the minority, but he hoped and believed that the halcyon day would come when there would be a more reasonable feeling on the part both of Catholics and Protestants in Ireland where education was concerned. Was it true or not that the sums mentioned as having been practically earned by the Irish teachers in the years gone by were being withheld from them, and if so, was it with the knowledge and consent of the Chief Secretary and those in authority in Ireland? He agreed with what had been said as to the conduct of the permanent officials. He knew from his own experience that this was not the only Department in Ireland which set at defiance the wishes of the people of Ireland. He had long been waiting to denounce the Irish Lights Board for the way in which they set at naught the express wishes of the people, but he was told that there was no way to do so, because the expenditure was not voted by Parliament, but derived from light dues. He was told that the Board of Education was composed of distinguished judges, and distinguished members of 293 the different denominations, but he had not supposed that, like the gentlemen of the Irish Lights Board, they exercised their own sweet will. He hoped the Chief Secretary would remember that there could never be any satisfaction amongst the bulk of the Irish people so long as there was an attempt by the permanent officials in Dublin to set at naught and override the expressed wishes of the people in matters of local detail when no principle was at stake. He thought the Tories were greater friends of Ireland than the Liberal Whigs, whose only object was to get into office and keep in office as long as they could. The hon. Member stated that £56 a year was too small an initial salary for teachers in Ireland. He was very glad they got it, but he knew that many teachers in England were working for a smaller salary, although the price of living in Ireland was much lower than in England. Of course, if a teacher had to depend on £56 a year for his whole life it would be unfair, but as a minimum he thought it very reasonable, and that there was no ground for complaint regarding it. There were many country priests who did not receive anything like that amount, and yet their grievances were not brought before the public. They on that side of the House were glad to support hon. Members from Ireland when they had a genuine grievance, and they must have when one of the heads of their Church resigned his position on the National Education Board. At the same time let not the Committee mix up major with minor matters. He could assure hon. Members opposite that in their zeal for education they had the sympathy of the majority of hon. Members on that side of the House. He hoped that the Chief Secretary would be able to satisfy hon. Members opposite on the question at issue, and that whether it was the Board of Education or that very obstinate body, the Irish Light Board, or any other Board, it should be got rid of when it worked out of harmony with the majority of the Irish people.
§ MR. T. M. HEALY (Louth, N.)
said he was glad of the tone of the speech of the hon. Member, but it did not carry them much further. The good old Juggernaut of the British Government would go on just the same. He regarded 294 the resignation of the Archbishop of Dublin less from the point of view of detail than from the more general aspect. Hon. Members might scarcely remember the circumstances under which his Grace, with more or less reluctance, accepted the office which he had just resigned. From the days of Archbishop Murray no Catholic ecclesiastic had ever taken office in the Board of National, Education. The methods of the Board had been denounced again and again by the Hierarchy, especially as regarded that portion of their administration connected with the model schools. In some of the dioceses, notably Limerick, he thought it was absolutely made a matter of conscience, under pain of exclusion from the sacraments, not to send children to those model schools. That was the position in which, in order to smooth educational difficulties, put down religious rancor, and assist the Government of the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Montrose, his Grace was willing to take upon himself all the risks of misunderstanding necessarily attaching to the assumption of the the office. The other Members of the Board were mainly gentlemen enjoying large State or educational emoluments, receiving solid bullion either from the State or from some of the confiscated foundations belonging to the Catholic Church. For the fifty or sixty years the Board had then been established it had never made one step in the way of approach to meet the demands of the mass of the people of Ireland, to popularize the Board, or to alleviate the just prejudices and antagonisms which its attitude had excited. Even leaving aside altogether the question of religious differences, the education which the commissioners administered to the country was of the most repellent and detestable kind. The people were fed practically, on intellectual sawdust. They actually refused to teach not merely Irish, but Irish history, or even those portions of English history bearing on the historical position of the Irish nation. Their lesson books would be a disgrace to the Hottentots or Kaffirs. The system, of so-called national education was a curse instead of blessing to the country, for it simply taught bad English instead of good Irish. It was into that Board 295 that, stepping aside from his own rank, the Archbishop went to endeavor to improve the Un-improvable, and it was from that point of view that his resignation demanded attention. He threw himself into the work and for five or six years worked like a galley slave. With that microscopic knowledge which he possessed there was not a department of education into which his Grace did not probe. Having been head of the college at Maynooth, he approached his task with the equipment of an educationist as well as of a scholar—which were not always the same thing. He clothed the dry bones of that foreign Board with some trace of scholarship and some touch of national feeling. But he found himself at every step obstructed, not only by his fellows on the Board, but by all the influences of which the Committee had heard on the principle that it was the business of Englishmen in Ireland to worry the natives. He actually achieved the Devolution of persuading the Board to allow the teaching of the history of Ireland with the reign of Henry VIII. In the schools. He then suggested that scholars in such places as Galway, Donegal, and Kerry, who knew no English, should be taught English through the medium of Irish. He had himself seen scholars in Donegal who could read English better than he could, but without understanding a single word of it. The class-book said, "Bring turf from the bog," but if the children were asked what turf was or what was a bog, they did not know. His Grace endeavored to bring about these and other reforms, but, obstructed, harassed and worried, without the co-operation or comradeship of a single real educationist or lover of his country on the Board, he at last stepped down and out. But the good old British Government would go on just as before. He knew they would still get £10,250,000 out of the country, that a certain number of poor men would enlist in the British Army, a certain number would go to the workhouse, and another certain percentage would emigrate to the United States. He knew these things would go on just as if nothing had happened; but, looking at the country even from the point of view of a Unionist, what did it profit the King to have such a system as that main- 296 tained, established, fostered, and bolstered up by Minister after Minister, for generation after generation? He cared nothing for the book stores or whether the ledgers were totted up or not. He would disdain to read the balderdash in the Return which had been supplied to hon. Members, but he did say that the resignation of that eminent man would be accepted throughout the length and breadth of Ireland as a further proof— if further proof were necessary—of the absolute failure of the institutions of the British Government in Ireland.
The hon. Member for East Finsbury asked what the remedy they proposed was. They had no remedy except Home Rule. There was no other remedy, and all the arguments of the hon. Member for South Tyrone and others pointed in that direction. The hon. Member for South Tyrone said he had got rather ahead of hon. Members on that side with that matter; he wanted a revolution. Disraeli said the same thing sixty years ago. The hon. Member reminded him of the American who in trying to keep up with the procession got ahead of the band. He wanted school boards. The first thing he suggested was abolishing that board altogether. Start with that. As far as he understood, there was not much difference between Protestants and Dissenters in England, but would it be tolerated that in some district in England where the Church of England was in a majority of ten to one, the humble Methodists or Presbyterians—he did not know whether they were humble—should on a school board of twenty members, have a membership of ten against the ten of the Church of England? If they would not tolerate that in a parish in England, how did they expect the Irish people to tolerate it, not in regard to a parish or county, but in regard to the entire of the Irish nation? Take that charter of Lord Stanley, or whoever the fool was who started it and light the fire at Downing Street with it. That was his first advice. Then let them place direct personal responsibility upon the minister of the day, who was now able to make the excuse that he was not responsible for the National Board of Education. The way in which Ministers managed with regard to Ireland was to create 297 Some irresponsible board over which they said Parliament had no control. There were the Irish Lights Board, the Education Board, the Valuation Board, and so on, all down the gamut of follies which is the chief monument of the British Government in Ireland. Some responsibility must be placed upon the Minister. The Minister now says, "I have found this system and I am born into it, and I have to manage it with all the red tape around it." Then he goes and gets a Cabinet minister ship in some less worrying British office. That was the story as long as they had known them, and that would be their story to the end of time.
The Scotch Vote was £1,363,881, the Irish Vote £1,300,700, so that there was £63,000 more for education in Scotland than in Ireland. In Ireland they had no Andrew Carnegies to give them a couple of million pounds. When anybody had got a couple of millions in Ireland he spent it in London and got a peerage, like Lord Iveagh. There were no merchant princes in their country, and any great Scotch lords and peers. And, remember also, that the Scotch people for 300 years back not only had their four universities, but they had also had an almost perfect system of primary education. He remembered when in 1870 it was proposed to establish compulsory education in Scotland there was an outcry against it in that country because it was considered almost an insult to them because they said that everybody in Scotland was educated without any compulsion. The Scotch Office was administered in London. In Ireland they would have been none the worse off if education had been administered from London. The Irish Office in London would have been infested by enemies just the same, and he did not care whether the office was in Downing Street or Marlborough Street. The Scotch Office in London costs £16,000 a year to administer—a large sum of money. The office and the salaries in Dublin cost £24,000. Therefore, to administer £63,000 less in Ireland they required £8,000 more. It had always been said that Ireland had been in the past the land of learning. He turned to the Royal Irish Constabulary Vote which he found was £1,355,000. So 298 that actually they paid more by £55,000 for policing Ireland and keeping it handcuffed than they were prepared to pay for establishing any kind of a national system of education in Ireland. If they went into any village in Ireland they would find there ten policemen to one schoolmaster. That represented fairly and accurately the view of Irishmen upon this system. It appeared to him that on these denominational questions they had got a long way ahead of the '30's and the '40's. They had then to bamboozle John Bull by saying they were setting up a system under which no religion whatever would be taught. As a matter of fact this was the most strictly denominational system that by any means they could establish. The parish priest was the manager of the schools in Catholic districts, while the Protestant and Presbyterian ministers were managers in their respective districts. According to the Education Board in Ireland they could not have the Crucifix in the schools, although they might have a picture of the Crucifix. They could not have a model of the thing. That was the modern Protestant idea of idolatry. They had got possession of the country. They had the forts, the Army and the Navy, and therefore nothing but a foreign invasion can disturb them in Ireland. Their tax collectors were all over the land, and they could do what they liked. What did it matter to them that the people were Nationalists? They would still get the same number of recruits for the Army and Navy. They shrink at the idea of making this Boards Nationalist, as if they would not really be more insurrectionary because they know the English language. They had often studied Irish disaffection, and he thought the chief cause of that disaffection was because they had always insisted upon the Irish acquiring knowledge of the English tongue. What he submitted in brief was this. Let the people alone. Within the iron bonds of British Government, from which they could not escape, why not let the people have free play in popular education and religious development? He put that question to Englishmen. He respectfully said, "Begin as you should begin, by the abolition of this Board, and start with the idea of giving 299 the people some share in the management of their own national life." If they started upon those principles, even as Unionists, they would be able to bring to the popular mind a large measure of appeasement and satisfaction.
§ MR. GORDON (Londonderry, S.)
said that instead of coming forward and asking for an inquiry upon the grounds stated by Archbishop Walsh, hon. Members opposite had taken advantage of this opportunity to make a wholesale attack upon the Board of National Education in Ireland. The Archbishop of Dublin, who had worked hard in connection with education in Ireland, knew the Board had done its work fairly and honestly, and he brought no charge against the Board. There was nothing in any letter which had been written by the Archbishop to justify the charges and statements made against the Board in this House. He would be surprised to hear the language that had been used in reference to some of his eminent colleagues on the Board. They were told that the Members of this Board were not educationists, that they were not scholars, and that some were judges country gentlemen, and clergymen. He wished to know whether the school board elected in any district in Ireland would be better qualified for this work than the gentlemen who at present constituted the Board of Education in Ireland. Most of them were men who had distinguished themselves in their university careers. Some of them were men who had had great experience themselves in teaching. One of them was a professor in a college before he became a county court judge. Others had acquired the very highest distinction in the universities of which they were ornaments. These gentlemen represented different schools of education and different schools of thought and religious views, and they worked amicably with the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Dublin for six years, and he himself had not one word to say against the Board. It was a little too much for hon. Members from Ireland, in making an application to this House for an inquiry into this question, that they should suggest things which the archbishop himself had never put forward as a ground for that inquiry.
300 A great work had been done in connection with the system of Education in Ireland, although nobody would go so far as to say that it was a perfect system. The Board of Education had conferred great benefits upon the community, and they were now told that it ought to be swept away. And what was to be put in its place? Some hon. Members suggested school boards. Those who made this suggestion in connection with Irish education did not realize what the feeling was in some parts of the country upon this question. Under other circumstances he might be in favor of school boards in Ireland. School boards had worked well in England and Scotland. It must not be forgotten that in Ireland the school manager discharged the function which was often discharged in England and Scotland by members of the school board. He was the man who was most respected by the people in the neighborhood, and no charges were made against the school managers. They conducted the correspondence, and dealt with the matters affecting the children and the teachers. Certain courses of education were prescribed, and certain standards had to be attained, and those standards were tested by annual or other inspection. What difference was there between the system in Ireland and the system in this country? He did not think hon. Members opposite wished to change the source from which the money was obtained for Irish primary education. He should be the last person in the world to say one word against the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Dublin. He had worked very hard in connection with education, as well as in other matters, and he had been mainly instrumental in bringing about a change in the system applying to the teachers in Ireland. The Board had framed a new scheme for the teachers which had taken an enormous amount of time, and no one suggested that this scheme did not meet with the approval of the Archbishop, or that it was not strictly in accordance with the teacher's requirements. The Board sent out this scheme, which stated all the details in regard to what they were prepared to do in reference to the salaries of the teachers who might remain under the new scheme, and they further stated that if there were any exceptional cases re- 301 quiring exceptional treatment they were prepared to deal with them. The result was that something like 40,000 letters, dealing with the complaints of about 10,000 teachers, from teachers, managers, and other people interested in the welfare of teachers, came pouring into the office, and, forsooth, the twenty commissioners were to sit down, study those letters, and form an opinion as to each of the complaints made! It was the duty of the subordinates—the clerks and assistant secretaries—to deal with such matters, and, when they had exhausted all that they could fairly deal with themselves, to bring the cases worthy of the consideration of the Board before the members. As a matter of fact, there were about 300 cases which presumably would be submitted to the Board. Under these circumstances they were told by the archbishop that letters had been sent out in the ordinary way in the name of a department, and this, forsooth, was to be made a charge against an officer discharging important functions, which functions he had discharged in a most satisfactory manner. The archbishop himself, in dealing with the matter in his letter of 1st June, written before his resignation, but at a time when he had all these matters before him, said that he had had numerous complaints sent in to him of the same character, and probably in the same terms, as those which had gone before the officials of the Board, so that, so far as he had been able to examine them in detail, he had found that, as a rule, the complaints were without any real foundation. Was it, therefore, to be said that there should be an inquiry into the working of the office because these complaints, which were asserted by the archbishop himself to be without any real foundation, were not all placed before the twenty commissioners? No man would be able to take the position of a Commissioner of National Education if it was to be a condition that he should read all the correspondence, and form an opinion as to every item, and, after all, was not that the gravamen of the charge of the archbishop? The question of stores and so on were the merest details. The archbishop complained that a circular was sent out without having been read and 302 approved by the men whose names were attached thereto. What though it were; and assuming a mistake had been made, was it not the duty of the archbishop to have brought it before his colleagues in order to get the mistake rectified?
These were matters to be dealt with by the commissioners themselves, and not by a public inquiry. The members of the Board were as competent to discharge their duties as Commissioners of National Education as any gentlemen could be; they were thoroughly honest, and were quite prepared to do their duty. Why, therefore, did not they inquire into the matter and deal with it? So far as there was anything before the public to show, there had never been any attempt on the part of the archbishop to get his colleagues to make an inquiry. According to the Minute of 18th June, the archbishop appeared to have received the greatest sympathy from the Board, and a resolution was passed which, at all events, seemed to have satisfied his Grace on that occasion. It was not until afterwards that he found, not that something had not been done, not that the spirit of the resolution had not been carried out, but that something had not been placed upon the minutes which he thought should have appeared on the record of the proceedings. His Grace might have been quite right, but was that a matter for a public inquiry? No sufficient ground had been given for such an investigation. It would be a very unfortunate thing if anything was said in the course of the debate to impair in any way the efficient working of the national system of education in Ireland. Great steps had been taken towards popularizing the system. Apart altogether from the question of having a purely undenominational and un sectarian system carried out as far as possible, capitation grants had been made to schools which were purely denominational and under denominational control. A system of united secular education, with separate religious instruction if the parties desired it, was in existence. In order to deal fairly with all classes of the community, those who wished to have a separate denominational system of their own and provided schools for it were getting large benefits under the existing system. It was now 303 suggested that all this should be brought to an end. There were a great many people in the world who were ready to destroy it, but it was one thing to attack and an entirely different thing to construct. The conservation of things which might not be perfect in every way, but which at all events served a good and useful purpose, ought to receive most careful consideration from the House. Nothing ought to be allowed to interfere with the conservation of such things, unless the House was convinced that they ought no longer to exist. He strongly protested against the attacks which had been made upon members of the Board as individuals, and upon the system as a system.
§ MR. HEMPHILL (Tyrone, N.)
thought the fact of such a man as the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Dublin taking the strong and irrevocable step of resigning his membership of the National Board ought in itself to be a certain guarantee that there was something very wrong and defective in the constitution of that authority. Speaking as a Protestant, and as one who was in no way under the guidance of the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Dublin, he believed that if there was one man more than another who enjoyed the confidence of the Irish nation as a whole it was Archbishop Walsh, and if one member of the Board had done more than another to promote the cause of national education in Ireland it was that eminent prelate. The Committee had, under the archbishop's own hand, the reasons which induced him to take the strong course he had adopted. The commissioners had officially announced that—Cases in which the Commissioners may deem it necessary to fix the future income of the teachers on the basis of their average incomes for the past three years will be specially considered.That was a solemn pledge, affecting about 2,700 teachers in Ireland. But what was done? An unauthorised circular was issued revoking and altogether repudiating that official announcement of the Board. In the words of Archbishop Walsh—Now, to their amazement, and very natural indignation, managers, on scnding up to the Education Office carefully prepared statements showing, by facts and figures, that the case 304 of some teacher is one on which it would seem inequitable to have the salary definitely fixed on the basis merely of a three years average receive, in reply, official letters to the effect that no other arrangement is possible; that the Commissioners are bound by Treasury rules; that the salaries must remain as they are; and that the only hope for the teachers of any improvement in their income is through some future addition to their salaries in recognition of 'continued good service.'To this the archbishop had added—It would manifestly be nothing short of a fraud upon the public if the Commissioners of National Education, having publicly Announced their intention of dealing exceptionally with cases requiring in equity to be exceptionally dealt with, and having obtained the necessary Treasury sanction for their doing so, were now to take their stand on the 'provisional' arrangement made at the outset, declining to modify it in any case, and declining even to take the trouble to look into the circumstances of a case specially submitted to them by a manager for equitable consideration.. … As a matter of fact, there is not one word of truth in the statements thus made in official form.These passages occurred on page 4 of the "Extracts from the Minutes." Notwithstanding this fact, the views of the archbishop did not prevail at the Board, and accordingly he had sent in his resignation. He agreed with the hon. Member for South Tyrone that the time had come when the National Board of Education should be overhauled, and that could not be done except through the medium of a public inquiry such as the hon. Member for Waterford had demanded. He trusted that when the Chief Secretary for Ireland rose to reply he would hold out some hope of a public inquiry. The National Board of Education was an obsolete institution, having regard to the way in which education had progressed during the last fifty years. The Board was a sort of compromise. Immediately after the Catholic emancipation in 1829, an attempt was made to give some education to the great mass of the peasantry and poor of Ireland. A jingling padlock had been hung upon their mouths and intellects during the whole of the 18th century, and the Lord Stanley of that time tried to initiate a system which if possible would reconcile the rather bigoted minds of the Irish Protestants to some method which would enable the Catholics of Ireland to be educated. The old Protestant schools 305 had fallen into disuse, and there was nothing left but the hedge schoolmaster, who taught the people for a sod of turf or a few pence very good Latin and very good English, as it turned out, and for seventy years the English people had done nothing to adapt the system then instituted to the growing necessities of the people of Ireland. He spoke with a great knowledge of the people of Ireland, and it must be admitted by everybody that, taking any Irish boy or girl individually, they could not be surpassed for intellect or the capacity for acquiring information; but they were behindhand in education, and especially behind their Scotch brethren, merely because the Government of England had not interfered to execute the first duty of a Government, the paternal duty of seeing that the youth of the State were properly educated.
This Board would have to be altogether altered. They had heard of the constitution of it, and it was not to be: supposed for a moment that he entertained any other feeling but that of the highest respect for every member of the Board; but at the same time, he could not help saying that in his opinion it was not a Board that understood the wants of the youth of Ireland. It was a body not responsible to the House, and had no representative in the House; no one who could be brought to book or taken to task for the errors and the maladministration of the Board. They were all eminent men engaged in other duties, and who could not be expected to enter into all the details of education necessary for the huge population of children in Ireland. There were among them a great many Fellows of Trinity College, which was the fort of the English garrison in Ireland, and no doubt if Ireland had been converted to Protestantism, if the Reformation had taken root in Ireland at the time of Queen Elizabeth, as it had done in England and Scotland the gentlemen would have been first-rate men for this purpose; but England had never been able to convert the Irish—they had tried every contrivance, they had resorted to every means of oppression and coercion, they had passed Acts of Parliament in the last century which were admittedly a disgrace to every 306 System of government since the world began. They had tried to proselyte them by bribery, and take advantage of their poverty, and after all these years the people were Catholics still, and would remain Catholic until the crack of doom. It would be necessary, therefore, to remodel the National Board of Education. Having regard to that state of things, they could not legislate for them in the same manner as for England and Scotland. That was the bed-rock of the evil of the English Government in dealing with Ireland. They endeavored to treat Ireland the same as if it were Yorkshire or Mid-Lothian; they could not do it. After seventy years education was less advanced in Ireland than it was then. The system had utterly broken down, and up to the present there had been no way and no hope of getting any improvement. In those days the air was full of doctrines of secularizing education. Some years ago he himself recollected certain rules that were passed and approved by the Lord Lieutenant, not under Act of Parliament, which were called fundamental rules, one of which was that no emblems should be used in the schools. What was the result? The breach of that rule was winked at, and although the inspectors never saw the emblems when they went to the schools they were perfectly well aware that they had only been carefully packed away in drawers and then taken out when they were gone. The whole thing should be overhauled. There should be an elected Board representative of the people, representative of those parents whose children were to be educated, who would give what the people wanted—that species of education which was best to fit them for the battle of life, which would accommodate itself to the different districts of the country, and which would be represented in this House by a Minister of Education—a second Vice-President of the Council— who would not be trammeled by any old-fashioned notions or doctrinaire traditions, but would see what was really best to develop the intellect and arm the youth of Ireland, male and female, with a proper equipment for the battle of life.
§ MR. POWER (Waterford, E.)
said that any man who looked dispassionately at 307 the whole Irish question would see that a great deal of the Irish difficulty had lain in religious prejudice. Whether they were right or wrong, they had adhered with tenacity to a certain creed. They were not mere worshippers of success from the material point of view, and they might have been better off if they had not adhered to the creed which they thought correct. Ultramontane or otherwise, that was the creed to which the Irish people were attached, and they would remain attached to it until death. It was their opinion that secular education should be accompanied by religious education, and they maintained that any statesman who endeavored to divorce the one from the other made a sad mistake. Allusion had been made by the hon. and learned Member to the fixing up in schools of the religious emblems which they wished to see as if they were idolaters. English gentlemen thought that they worshipped these things. These emblems merely reminded them of diviner things, and anyone who knew Catholicism knew that there was no idolatry. They were not mere worshippers of success, and although it might not be for their advantage to adhere to the faith for which their forefathers fought and bled, he hoped to God they would. The hon. Member for South Tyrone had delivered an interesting speech on the subject brought forward by the hon. Member for Water-ford. He seemed to think that the hon. Member for Waterford did not make good his case. Their case was that in this, as in many other matters, the people of Ireland were governed by permanent officials, absolutely irrespective of the wishes of Parliament and the feelings of the majority of the people. A fortnight ago the hon. Member for South Tyrone showed in an interesting speech that the Land Acts were clogged and would not work owing to the action of the officials. The very case they were discussing now was another instance of that. Officials in Ireland did absolutely what they wished, and in connection with the National Board they acted with a freer hand than in other cases, because the Board was not responsible to this House. The right hon. Gentleman representing the Government in this House with respect to Irish affairs could not demand 308 an explanation from the National Board of Education for anything it did. He had rather to ask an explanation, and if they declined to give it he was absolutely powerless to enforce it. He thought they were all agreed that it was the very first duty of the State to look after the education of the children. It was also the first duty of the parent to look after the education of his children, and any parent who failed to equip his children with proper education did not discharge the obligations of his position. Very few people in the main approved of the system of education carried out by the Board. He noticed that the hon. Member for North Kensington was a warm advocate of the system pursued by the Board. He understood that the hon. Member was an Irishman, but whether that was so or not he could speak for very few in Ireland. The hon. Member for South Tyrone went beyond the hon. Member for Waterford, and said he wished the whole thing swept away. The action proposed by the hon. Member for Waterford would be a stepping stone to that.
He believed a greater case had never been made for a public investigation than in this matter. If any board in the country should possess the confidence of the people it was the board entrusted with the education of the people. While the Archbishop of Dublin was on the Board it did to some extent possess the confidence of the people. They knew that that he worked wonderfully hard while on that Board, but he, having found it impossible to adjust things even in a moderate way to meet the wishes of Ireland, had left the Board, and now there was no one on it who possessed in the least the confidence of the Irish people. He could point to many towns in Ireland which had been ruined by the desolating influence of British rule, and he could prove that millions of British money had been spent in bolstering up a system of education which the Irish people abhorred and despised. While he deplored the bigotry which was manifested by Protestants towards Catholics in the north of Ireland, yet in his heart of hearts he was prepared to make allowance for it, because the schools in which the Protestants had been brought up produced a system of religious intolerance which nothing else could produce. Lately 309 he was reading one of the few speeches on educational matters which Lord Byron delivered. Speaking of the system set up in the north of Ireland, he used these significant words—Better send children to those islands in the South Seas, where they might more humanely learn to become cannibals. It would be less disgusting to see them brought up to devour the dead than to persecute the living. Schools do you call them? Schools! Rather call them dunghills where the viper of intolerance deposits er young, that when their teeth are cut, and their poison is mature, they may issue forth filthy and venomous to sting the Catholic.When he read of the system which had been bolstered up, and which to some extent still continued in some parts, he was prepared to look with leniency on the children brought up in the schools which Lord Byron had so eloquently described. Though the people of Ulster had too well learned the sorry lesson, he could say on the part of Munster, Leinster, and Connaught, that though Catholics were in a majority in these provinces they would never retaliate on those who differed from them in a spirit so lowering and so degrading. He agreed with the hon. Member for South Tyrone that the only way to remedy the situation was to root out the present system and establish one in which the Irish people would have some confidence.
§ MR. TULLY (Leitrim, S.)
said no reply had been given to the strong case brought forward by the hon. Member for Kerry. What they complained of was that Dr. Walsh had been forced to resign membership of the National Board of Education. The grounds for that resignation were stated in a document which had been placed in their hands within the last few hours. He did not understand why the document was not circulated earlier. If the document had been sent to Members generally, instead of only to a few, the Committee would have been better able to appreciate what it contained. They were told by the hon. Member for South Tyrone that out of the 2,700 special claims which were sent in by teachers with regard to their new salaries, only 300 had substantial foundation. These 300 cases had been ignored by the circular which was issued over the heads of the Commissioners of National Education for 310 the purpose of getting rid of the work which the officials should naturally discharge. These were very specific grievances, and deserved some better answer than had been given that evening. The National Board of Education was condemned universally in Ireland as being entirely unsuited to the needs of the Irish people. The members of the Board were simply society gentlemen who circulated around Dublin Castle. Of all the members of the Board which had the control of the primary education of Ireland there were none, except perhaps Mr. Molloy, who was trained in the Irish Board system, the Archbishop of Dublin, and Sir R. Blennerhassett, who could be said to know anything about the national education of Ireland.
§ MR. LECKY (Dublin University)
May I interrupt the hon. Gentleman? In addition to Professor Dowden there are no less than three Fellows or ex-Fellows of Trinity College on the Board. These gentlemen have surely some knowledge of education.
§ MR. TULLY
said that if that was so they did not give much attention to education in Trinity College. What had this Board been doing? They had sent the Commission to the Continent to report on manual instruction, but if they had known their business they would have had all that at their finger's-end. The right hon. Gentleman had spoken of Dr. Starkie as one of the products of Trinity College, whom they must all accept as a model of perfection in these matters. But this Dr. Starkie when challenged as to why the staff of the Education Board would not examine into the 2,700 appeals from the teachers, replied that the Education Office was in a state of confusion. He admitted under 311 his own hand that he had no control over the staff of the Education Office, and that he could not get them to carry out their duties. On the 13th May last he wrote to the Archbishop of Dublin and said—The present state of affairs is intolerable. I have no control even over the staff of my office, for which I am directly responsible. I could put my finger on the men who are and have been the cause of all the dislocation both here and in the inspection work; but it would be useless asking the Commission to support me if I propose so much as the superannuation of an officer.That was Dr. Starkie, and that was the Education Board which was selected from the society of nobodies in Dublin. Four days after that letter, on the 17th May, Dr. Starkie again wrote to Archbishop Walsh stating—It is very difficult for a man in my position to deal with the class of men we have among the higher officials.Two of them, whose names were left in blank, were, he said—Perfectly hopeless, I cannot get (naming one of the two) to read the rules or to adhere strictly to them. He is always interpolating ideas and interpretations of his own, and submitting them to me for 'formal' sanction. I have to initial 300 notings a week, and cannot be expected to study each of them.. … I have to take a great deal on trust, which is bad security in this office.That was the Dr. Starkie, the Resident Commissioner for whom the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Trinity College stood up in this House and defended. He was not surprised that the right hon. Gentleman had left the House when he knew these revelations were coming. The fact was that the political partisans of these incompetent officials of the Board of Education covered up their deficiencies—a state of things which would not be tolerated in England or Scotland for half an hour. Hon. Gentlemen opposite did not like these revelations. Truth was always bitter; and they did not wish that there should be any exposure of the manner in which the people of Ireland had been treated. He thoroughly agreed with the hon. Member for South Tyrone that they wanted something more than an inquiry—a revolution; they wanted to wipe away the Board altogether, and he invited the Chief Secretary to wipe the Board of Education root and branch 312 off the face of Ireland. There were plenty of educational experts in Ireland, but as they did not go to the balls and levees at Dublin Castle they were not placed upon the Board. All the intelligence of Ireland was not circumscribed by the walls of Dublin Castle, but because of the ignorance and the bigotry and intolerance that existed at the Castle with regard to Ireland the Government would not put these experts on the Board. It was an intolerable state of things, and one which the Irish Members in this House would always cry out against. He would refer again to the memorandum which was filled with so much balderdash and piffle. Dr. Starkie in the memorandum he had issued had gone for the scalp of the Archbishop of Dublin. Hon. Members were told that a sufficient number of copies of this precious memorandum could not be produced in time to supply all the members of the House. That was a piece of the greatest humbug that ever existed. He was a printer himself, and could state emphatically that there was no greater difficulty in producing 500 copies than the few which had been put round the House. What was the reason of that humbug? It was because Dr. Starkie thought he could spring the memorandum on the House, and so cover up his tracks, that hon. Members would not have an opportunity of nailing him upon his statements. The archbishop, however, had fortunately secured a copy on the previous evening, and had written a very important letter upon the subject, which had appeared in the Irish papers that morning. In the memorandum Dr. Starkie had spoken of the crisis at the Education Office. He had called it a crisis because they had altered the system of payment of the teachers, they had consolidated the salaries, and on account of the great labor in dealing with that consolidation a crisis had come about. It was ridiculous to call it a crisis. This crisis which Dr. Starkie spoke of was a crisis which existed among the staff, and had been caused by the conduct of the Education Board. These education officers administered a sum of £1,400,000, £20,000 of which went to the staff of the office. The Scotch Vote, which was of the same amount, was administered at a cost of only £16,000 for the staff, yet 313 under the Irish system they had a resident commissioner complaining that his officials would not do their work and would not even read the rules, and that he had no power to remove them or get them superannuated by this effete Education Board. He wondered what English Members, who might fairly be expected to take an interest in a question like this, thought. They were a great commercial people, took a great interest in commercial questions, and how many Englishmen would wish that there should be a Board like this administering £1,400,000 in this way? It was a condition of things they would not tolerate for a moment, and they would very soon take drastic measures to send the whole of these people about their business. Upon the general question of education in Ireland there was one point seriously deserving of the attention of the Government. The hon. Member for West Kerry, whose eloquent statement of the matter could not be surpassed, had stated that the starting salary of the teachers in Ireland was £56 per annum, and that it would take thirty-six years for a teacher to reach the maximum salary of £150 a year. It is only in 10 per cent. of the schools in Ireland that the teachers had the attendance by which they could qualify for the maximum salary, and yet the hon. Member for East Fins bury had had the temerity to say that £56 a year was quite enough for an Irish school teacher to start with. That was too miserable a salary to expect trained men, who devoted their lives to education, to accept. When on a visit to Scotland he attended a meeting in one of the board schools of Dunbartonshire, and he had asked the teacher there what his salary was, and had received the reply that his salary and emoluments amounted to between £300 and £400 a year. It was no wonder that the Scotch were swarming all over the country, and getting all the best things in life, when they had such splendid advantages of education as he saw there. He thought that Ireland should, instead of being kept behind, have the same opportunity of developing the intelligence of the people by education as the Scotch. If they gave Irishmen the management of their own affairs, even in education, they would not come to this House with any pitiful appeals, but would set manfully to work, and in- 314 stead of having the teachers paid so miserably as now they would, out of their own scanty means, give sufficient to maintain first-class schools.
§ MR. BOLAND (Kerry, S.)
said the revelations which had been made in the matter of this Board were in themselves a condemnation of the system of education in Ireland. It would be admitted that a nominated body, thoroughly out of sympathy with the wishes of the people to be educated, could not be a success, and Ireland was the only country where a great educational department was carried on by a nominated body. The tendency of the Government with regard to education in England was to delegate to the local authorities the authority to conduct the education of their own districts, as was shown by the Bill now before the House to hand over that power to the county councils. But in Ireland they still retained the old, worn out, and antiquated system of a nominated board. The real objection to this system was that, while it pretended to satisfy the wants of the Irish people, it really did nothing of the kind. While it was true that the religious differences were said to be met by constituting the Board equally of Catholics and Protestants, there was the disadvantage that the Board was not an educational one. It was not sufficient to have Catholics and Protestants upon the Board; what were required was Catholic educationists and Protestant educationists. There was a great dearth of educationists upon the Board, and to conduct education in this manner was to hamper education in its first steps. The fact that stared them in the face right through the system of Irish education, whether it was the primary or whether it was the more advanced education, was the way in which the wishes of the people were ignored. The question of university education had often been raised in the House, and an inquiry had now been granted in respect of that matter, but that inquiry was not nearly so important as the inquiry which had now been demanded by the hon. Member for Waterford. A consideration not to be ignored was that when a foreign country tried to govern a country in a foreign way, as England tried to govern Ireland, it never recog- 315 nised the various educational movements going on in that country. There was nothing more striking in Ireland at the present time than the movement for the revival of the Irish language; yet the Education Board, which was looking after the intellectual interests of the youth of Ireland, had, since the resignation of Dr. Walsh, nobody at all to look after the Irish children in this respect. It had been said that some members of the Board were learned professors of Trinity College, and that might be perfectly true; but Trinity College and its professors were an alien institution in the country, and any attempt by the Government to claim that they were looking after the interests of the people by putting over them men alien to them in every respect would not succeed. There were other Trinity College professors well qualified to take a position upon the Education Board, and the appointment to such a position of Dr. Douglas Hyde would have given general satisfaction. He was not appointed, however, because he had the interests of the people at heart, and because he saw in the educational movement at the present time for the revival of the ancient language of Ireland an opportunity to help the people to develop themselves on national lines, and that the study of the old language would enable them to grasp the history of the country, and build up a national character in themselves which would never be built up under any system of nominated Boards.
§ MR. LUNDON (Limerick, E.)
said he intended to contribute a few remarks in this debate upon the important matter of education. To his mind there was no subject of more importance to the Irish people than the question of education. He condemned the existing condition of education in Ireland, and insisted upon the necessity for a revolutionary change to a system conducted on really national lines. The hon. Member pointed out that Irish manufactures and industries having been ruined by British rule, the Irish people had largely to rely for their advancement on those who were to come after them on a system of national education. When this system was launched over seventy years ago Tinder the name of a national system of 316 education it was never intended by the people who launched it that it should be made into an anti-national system. Every effort had been made to utilize the system of education in Ireland in the interests of the ascendancy class. In his early days he had ample opportunity of confirming what he had stated upon this point. One thing which had struck him in connection with this debate was the absence of hon. Members from their seats upon the Government side of the House. After the speech of the hon. Member for South Tyrone there was quite a stampede from the benches opposite. He did not deny that there had been great scholars and educationists connected with the National Board, but all their learning and education had been directed in one channel, and that was the maintenance of the Protestant ascendancy in Ireland. What were they doing for the Catholics of Ireland or the education of the world? They were mere figure-heads, merely ornamental, and the business was carried on by a few functionaries. Dr. Walsh joined the Board a few years ago with the view of doing some service to the Irish people. After his experience of it he had now retired sadly disappointed. He could find nothing but perversity and incompetence; but his retirement might be the best thing the Irish people ever saw in connection with the Board. What they wanted was not so much an inquiry— although that was badly wanted—as a revolution of the entire system. It was quite true that they could do little in this House to bring that about, but they had in Ireland the Irish National League, and they had newspapers in Dublin to educate the people. There were branches of the National League all over the country, and if they were driven to that resource they could nationalize the system. In the city of Limerick there was scarcely any control by the National Board. In Ireland they had one university—Trinity College. It was founded by robbery and spoliation. It was hard that Irishmen should now have to beg for education at the hands of the English nation, for in former times the Irish were a learned people. They were told that they ought to forgive and forget their wrongs. They might forgive, but they could not forget, 317 their memories being good. He remembered as a boy when the population of Ireland was nine millions, and now it was only four and a half millions. They were going down hill, whereas in England they were going up hill. They asked to be allowed simply to go on their own way. Dr. Walsh, whose learning was equal to that of St. Thomas Aquinas, and who was famous as a great educationist, could do nothing while he was on the Board of Education. The Resident Commissioner admitted that the officials of the Board could do what suited themselves, and they were steeped in bigotry and hatred. The English people knew nothing of what went on in Ireland. All they wanted was denominational education, and that the Catholic people, by their bishops and priests, and their Members of Parliament, should be allowed to manage their own system, and that the Presbyterians of the North of Ireland should have the right to their own system, according to their own belief.
§ MR. LEAMY (Kildare, N.)
said that the hon. Member for South Tyrone had, in the course of his excellent speech, declared that he did not think a case had been made out for an inquiry into the condition of affairs in the Irish Education Board, but he was sure that not only that hon. Gentleman, but every fair minded man in the House, would admit that an imperative case had been made out for inquiry when they heard the letters read which had been addressed by the Resident Commissioner to Archbishop Walsh. The hon. Member then read the extracts from the letters of Dr. Starkie, quoted by the hon. Member for South Leitrim, and insisted that there was something radically wrong in the Board of Education when the Archbishop had felt compelled to resign. When, some years ago, Dr. Walsh accepted a seat on the Board, his Grace had surprised most of his friends in Ireland, and they knew that, from his brave and strenuous nature, he would not give in as long as there was the slightest chance of carrying out his views, which were those of the vast majority of the people of Ireland. His Grace's resignation was a confession of confusion and failure in the Board. The Board was dead, and the only inquiry 318 that should be made was a post-mortem inquiry. Archbishop Walsh stood for a great deal to the Irish people. He was the head and representative of their great and ancient faith, and was the national exponent of the views of the Irish people on education. Anyone who knew the story of Ireland, who understood the love of its people for education, would almost despise them for the way they had put up with the existing system so long. For his part he had no fear but that this inquiry would have to be made. They were not going to allow themselves to be eternally despised when they made their demands. Did they want him to go back to Ireland and say that the Irish people could not get justice in this House? He could freely state, after an experience of many years, that they could get nothing, and he would be very glad to go back and tell his people that for any reforms they must depend upon themselves and not upon that House. Although he supported the motion, he would not regret its being defeated, because he could go to his own country and say to his own people, "You see what this English Parliament is; you see what it has done, and you see that even in a simple measure like this you cannot get your demands granted, and therefore for any reforms you require you must depend upon your own selves."
§ MR. SHARPE (Kensington, N.)
said he thought it was unfortunate that because one of the members of a Board of high and eminent gentlemen in Ireland had thought fit to retire from the seat which he had occupied for some time that the question of his retirement should be made the subject of a first-class debate in this House. Archbishop Walsh was one of those men in Ireland for whom he had an extraordinary admiration, not only as a great ecclesiastic, but as an Irishman of whom all Irishmen ought to be proud. He agreed entirely with the Nationalist Members in their desire to have Roman Catholics given the fullest, and greatest, and largest position in the administration of the sums granted by the House for the purposes of Irish education, and it was an extraordinary surprise to him to find the hon. Member for East Waterford attacking him personally as being out of sympathy 319 with his own country because he had cheered some of the observations of an Irish Unionist. He was sufficiently Irish to admire the geniality and witty spirit of his countrymen, and when he cheered a witty remark of the hon. Gentleman he was far from adopting the political views which he generally advocated. So far as Dr. Walsh was concerned he considered that his Grace had exhibited a singular want of judgment in this matter, and when he heard hon. Gentlemen on the opposite side, including the right hon. Member who sat upon the Front Bench, speaking of the gentlemen who formed the Board of Irish Education, men who were among the most eminent of those living in Ireland, and saying that they were unknown as educationists, he could only express his amazement; not to speak of the judges on the Board, Dr. Traill, Dr. Bernard, and Dr. Starkie had all been Fellows of Trinity College, passing the hardest and the greatest of all competitive examinations known in this country. Hon. Members opposite might sneer at Trinity College and the University of Dublin, but to tell him that it was not the greatest institution at the present moment that adorned his native land was to him a monstrous fabrication. Hon. Members ought to be very careful of criticizing and judging those who had been selected by successive Governments to be members of the National Board of Education. He was no admirer of that Board; he had been taught to regard with disapproval the whole system of national education in Ireland, and he was not going to defend it now; but it was initiated and developed by Archbishop Murray and Archbishop Whately, the Roman Catholic and Protestant Archbishops of Dublin many years ago, upon principles which commended themselves to the most enlightened Roman Catholics of the highest class in Ireland. Though this system might now be regarded as obsolete, it should not be forgotten that those men made a determined effort in their time to promote what they thought was best for the liberty and sentiment of Ireland.
It was true he had come away from Ireland and had given the best years of his life to building up that great colonial empire of which he was as proud as of being an Irishman, and which, after Home Rule 320 had faded away, all Irishmen would be as proud as any in the United Kingdom, and which would eventually bring prosperity to Ireland. He believed there was a great future before Ireland. He was entirely with hon. Members opposite with regard to their views on denominational education, and he was as strongly in favor as hon. Gentlemen opposite of having justice done to Roman Catholics in Ireland, as it had been to the Church and the great body of Christians to which he belonged on this side of the Channel; but he would not be a party to the hounding down of Irishmen simply because they would not swallow the shibboleth of Home Rule. It was to be regretted that his right hon. friend the Chief Secretary had selected the 12th of July for the discussion of these controversial Estimates. Deplorable as he considered the loss of Archbishop Walsh from a position in which he was most useful, he thought at the same time he had made a great mistake in resigning, and that hon. Members had made a great mistake in raising this discussion in this way. Some of the letters read this evening struck him with astonishment and amazement, but at the same time he hoped in spite of this; debate, and the bitterness which was at times evolved in debates of this description, that the always genial spirit of the Irish Roman Catholics would prevail, that Trinity College, of which all Irishmen were so proud, would be able to hold its own in Ireland, and that the system of national education would be molded in such a way as to meet the approval of the hon. Gentlemen opposite, in spite of all the political differences which existed between them and him.
§ MR. O'MALLEY (Galway, Connemara)
said he was glad to see that the hon. Gentleman who had just spoken had not a word to say in favor of the national educational system for Ireland, 321 and he was also pleased to hear the eulogium passed on Dr. Walsh. He hoped after the observations which the hon. Gentleman had made with regard to the Archbishop of Dublin and the remarks he had made in condemnation of the educational system of Ireland he would be sufficiently logical to vote for the motion of the hon. Member for Waterford. The Irish people and all those who were in favor of education in Ireland would recognize that they owed a good deal to Dr. Walsh for the position which he had taken up. He had been fighting for the cause of education and nationalism in Ireland, surrounded by men not educationists in the true sense of the word. There was scarcely a man upon the Committee who could be said to be an educationist. The National Board of Education was a fossilized body, which was anti-national and anti-Irish. The whole atmosphere of the National Board of Education and of the education system of Ireland generally was an atmosphere hostile to the Irish nationality and to the Catholic religion. Archbishop Walsh had taken a strong and remarkable course owing to the action taken by the officials of the Board. Those who read through the correspondence could see that the Archbishop believed the whole system was wrong and rotten, and that he wished to have it improved. The, Committee, in his opinion, did not realize sufficiently the importance of the correspondence in this matter. Dr. Walsh had evidently the sympathy of Dr. Starkie in his efforts to reform the Board. It was evident that those two gentlemen were desirous of bringing about some reform in the Board, and Dr. Starkie had admitted that his hands had been tied by the officials; but that gentleman had not resigned. Dr. Walsh had resigned because of his desire to call the attention of the House to the condition of education in Ireland. How the Chief Secretary, in the face of the correspondence, could refuse the inquiry asked for was beyond his comprehension. Education for the last seventy years had been most defective, and he appealed to hon. Gentlemen on both sides of the House to try and force the hand of the Chief Secretary in this matter. Dr. Starkie himself had pointed out that it was an intolerable 322 state of affairs that he had no control over the staff in his office for which he was responsible. The right hon. Gentleman surely would not decline an inquiry demanded by such facts as those. Dr. Walsh in the correspondence had pointed out that he had found it absolutely hopeless to work out a reform from within in the ordinary course by appealing to the resident commissioner to do his duty and deal with his incompetent and insubordinate staff of assistants. Dr. Walsh, having failed to effect the reform, had after several years resigned his position and asked for an inquiry into the whole matter. This was an opportunity which the right hon. Gentleman had for acceding to a reasonable Irish demand. If he did not accede to it he could only say it would be another instance of the want of desire of the Front Bench to grant any concessions for Ireland. The hon. Member for South Tyrone said he wished to see a revolution in the education system of Ireland, and there was no doubt that there ought to be a commission of inquiry into the whole system. A Commission had been granted to inquire into the university question, but it was necessary, in view of the unsatisfactory condition of education in Ireland, that the whole system should be reorganized. He had had some experience in education, and, while he had seen in this country improvement advancing by great progress, in Ireland for the last thirty years he had seen the same old books and the same antiquated system of teaching. Whilst both England and Scotland had been advancing rapidly in this matter, education in Ireland had been at a standstill. Such a state of things was quite enough to condemn the National Education Board; he would, therefore, suggest to the right hon. Gentleman that, while he granted the inquiry demanded by the hon. Member for Waterford, he would take the greater question into consideration, and inquire into the whole system of education in Ireland, with the object of seeing whether he could not carry out the views of the hon. Member for South Tyrone. If Mr. Walsh and Dr. Starkie and a few other gentlemen like them were appointed on a Commission of that kind, they would very soon devise some system of education which would 323 be to the advantage of the Irish nation. He had great pleasure in supporting the motion of his hon. friend.
§ THE CHIEF SECRETARY FOR IRELAND (Mr. WYNDHAM,) Dover
We have had an interesting and picturesque debate upon a subject of great importance. The question of education has always been of the greatest importance to every country, and perhaps especially to Ireland, a country which, for reasons into which I need not now enter, has not gained as much as England and Scotland have from the moneys devoted by Parliament to education from year to year. But the debate has been a discursive one, and must have left a somewhat confused impression upon the minds of English Members who have dropped in and heard only parts here and there. We have had attacks on or violent criticisms of the officials of the National Board; we have had suggestions for abolishing it; we have had three or four alternatives which might be substituted for it. We have had references to the date on which we are gathered together, to the history of Ireland, and to much else that has been very entertaining and instructive to those who have been here, as I have, since about three o'clock this afternoon. But a confused impression is left on the mind. Let me illustrate that by one sentence which fell from the hon. Member for Connemara. Speaking of the action of Archbishop Walsh, he said—Ostensibly he has been attacking the officials of the Board, but through the whole of his statements there runs evidence of a desire to introduce a completely new form of education in Ireland.Well, Sir, I was not prepared to say that to this Committee. I am prepared to accept his Grace's account of his own dissatisfaction with the working of the office, and I say that the fact that Archbishop Walsh has resigned because of that dissatisfaction has been taken advantage of this afternoon by hon. Members in order to introduce a far wider topic, viz., whether or not the system of education which prevails in Ireland is a good one, and what substitute could be put in its place.
§ MR. WYNDHAM
I agree. The hon. Member for South Tyrone, in the course of an interesting speech, said that the Education Vote was the opportunity for hon. Members to air their views on education in Ireland. So it is. But it is not the opportunity of the Minister in charge of the Estimates, and I must therefore, deny myself in a great measure the large ambit which almost everybody else has claimed—to criticize the principles which underlie the existing system, or to outline the substitutes which they would prefer. The resignation of Archbishop Walsh has been, made the occasion for advocating a revolution in the system which prevails in Ireland. The hon. Member for South Tyrone said, "It is not an inquiry that I want; it is a revolution." The hon. and learned Member for Waterford, who has moved a reduction, and accompanied his motion with a request for an inquiry, did not attack the officials of the Board very vehemently. The shafts aimed at the officials were intended to ricochet off and strike the Government because it allows such a system to exist that is the whole explanation of the debate, and it indicates the somewhat confused impression left on the minds of. English Members. My hon. friend asks for a revolution in the system of education in Ireland, and says this is the occasion for it. One of the wisest men, perhaps the wisest, who ever lived, said that revolutions proceed from small occasions, but from great causes. My remarks must be devoted to an attempt to show that the occasion is indeed small, but, as I have hinted, I must leave the question of whether or not the great cause exists for a future occasion. When I say that the occasion is small I do not refer to the resignation of Archbishop Walsh. That resignation was unexpected and deplorable. The Archbishop has rendered the greatest services to the cause of primary education in Ireland during recent years, and in the position which I occupy I had confidently counted on his advice in all that affects primary education in Ireland. I understand that he has retired from the Board, and 325 does not intend to further assist the existing system in its present shape. I regret that most deeply, and I think the cause of primary education in Ireland has suffered a very great loss. The retirement of Archbishop Walsh is not a small matter, but I must be permitted to say, with all deference to his Grace, that the events which have led to that retirement bulk in his vision more largely than they have any need to do. What does it all come to? We have heard many speeches made, and we have had long extracts read from these papers which contain all the charges preferred by his Grace, and the reply of a much respected member of the Board. Here let me say that I do not think this can be called Dr. Starkie's report. Dr. Starkie has done much for education, and I am sorry that no tribute has been paid to him in the course of this debate. Every tribute that has been paid to the Archbishop might with equal force have been paid to the Resident Commissioner. But if Dr. Starkie formulated this reply, it was, after all, adopted by a very large meeting of the Board, at which—I do not like going into these denominational distinctions — but at which all the denominations were represented.
Parenthetically, may I express my great regret that some English Members have not been supplied with these papers. The fact is that it was only by using very great exertions that it was possible to obtain any advance copies at all. A special meeting of the Board was convened, at which these minutes were drawn up, and it was only by hastening the printers in Ireland and taking great pains I was able to get a certain number of advance copies, and by obtaining permission to waive the rules of the House, which impose certain restrictions upon the circulation of papers. That is a digression, but I wish hon. Members to understand that no discourtesy was intended, and that every effort was made in order to have a reasonable debate to-night.
Hon. Members who have listened to the speeches and read these very comprehensive papers will, I think, agree with me that the whole of the conflict about the work and the efficiency of the staff, and laches on the part of the staff, or any unauthorized action taken 326 by the officials, really centers around two pivots. The first is the claim of the teachers in Ireland to have exceptional treatment when the normal treatment accorded under the new rules fails to be absolutely equitable. It is clear how great a change has been effected in national education in Ireland during the last few years, and through the instrumentality of the very Board and the very officials who have been arraigned to-night, and largely thanks to the energy of the Resident Commissioner, Dr. Starkie. From a system based on results fees—a pernicious principle which has been rejected in almost every country in Europe—the Board and its officials and, to a great extent, the Resident Commissioner, have proceeded to a system based on a consolidated salary given to the teachers, and to a plan by which the teachers, instead of being paid according to their success in an examination, which they could take on whenever they pleased, are now graded in accordance with the importance and the size of the schools in which they teach. All who take an interest in education will at once allow that these are great and most important refor s. The system of basing the classification of the teacher on his attainments in past examinations led inevitably to this—that it paid him much better to attend a small school than a large one; he could rise in the hierarchy by his individual efforts as a scholar instead of by his aptitude as a teacher. The system of results fees is known to be a very bad one for the pupils. The clever ones are forced on and made exhibit-ional competitors; the mind of a child in a delicate state is oppressed and wearied; and some of the most promising children are ruined for life, while the stupid ones are thrown into a state of hopeless stagnation. All that has been swept away by this Boards these officials, and this Resident Commissioner; the change has been effected in a very brief period; and I claim that the change has been a beneficent one.
But have hon. Members really considered the magnitude of the labor involved in these reforms? There are in Ireland 13,000 teachers, over 8,000 schools, and 8,000 managers. This necessarily complicated plan had to be submitted in a provisional shape, and it 327 elicited 40,000 letters on one point alone; 2,753 claims for special consideration were put forward by teachers based on the plea that the consolidated salary calculated on the average of three years or the normal of the last year, if that was more beneficial to the teacher, was not absolutely equitable. The officials of the Board have had to write 40,000 letters on that point alone.
Then consider not only the volume of work, but the intricacy of the question Under the old system teachers in the national schools of Ireland were paid on eight different accounts, some fixed and others fluctuating, namely, a full year's class salary, or a full year's capitation payment; 20 per cent. increase on class salary; a full year's bonus in the case of assistants entitled to it; a full year's good service or supplementary salary in the case of teachers entitled to same; a full year's residual grant; a full year's results fees; a full year's customs and excise grant; and a full year's gratuities where payable. Under these eight different heads were the teachers paid according to the eminence they had reached by passing competitive examinations. All that had to be swept away, and one consolidated salary given in its place. At the outset the Board, who were largely indebted to the Resident Commissioner, proposed to adopt the somewhat simple plan of giving a consolidated salary, with increments every three years—a salary which was in a rough and ready manner a fair equivalent of the average sum total of the emoluments derived from these eight sources. But upon one point the teachers made a claim which upon consideration was found to be a just claim. They received some part of their emoluments from "results fees." This is very hard to follow, but I think I must make it clear, because nearly the whole of the charges which have been made arise from a misconception of these very intricate points. The year for the results fees was the calendar year, and the year for the other fees was the financial year. I have only to mention that in order to bring home to the minds of hon. Members who have been connected with any transaction of the kind the illimitable opportunity for logic-chopping presented by such an arrangement. While I am on this point, let me refer 328 to the point raised by the hon. Member for West Kerry, and about which the hon. Member for East Fins bury expressed some concern—that the teachers had been, I will not say cheated, but deprived of a quarter of their balance of the residual grant. The whole thing resolves itself into this. For Treasury reasons, and for no others, the sum of money to which the teachers were entitled was paid in the first week of April instead of in the last week of March.
§ MR. DILLON (Mayo, E.)
asked whether the right hon. Gentleman still claimed that the residual grant went by the financial and not the calendar year.
§ MR. WYNDHAM
I claim that most emphatically. It is a very complicated subject. Had the original and simple plan of the Commissioners been followed, the teachers might have lost something on results fees, but there would have been no difficulty of this kind. In order, however, that the teachers should not lose on the results fees, the new consolidated salaries were applied to each school, not on the date originally contemplated, the 1st April, 1900, but whenever the results fees year finished in each particular school. It is a complicated arrangement for hon. Members to follow, and they must take it from me that it was a fair arrangement. Having done that, you are led on to other complicated actuarial adjustments. It is a fact that in the long run, in so far as the balance of the residual grant and the results fees are concerned, every teacher in Ireland has, I believe, already received all that he can receive, unless it is disputed.
§ MR. THOMAS O'DONNELL
was understood to point out that the office had stated that the money which was afterwards paid as results fees was not due.
§ MR. WYNDHAM
I was unable to accept several of the arguments used by the hon. Member, who is an eloquent champion of the teachers. There is this fundamental difficulty, that whereas the teachers thought that this change in the system of education in Ireland was a 329 proper occasion for asking for a consideration of, And making an addition to, all the demands they had ever put forward, the Treasury has officially laid it down that, whilst assenting to this change, and it was not to be considered as an occasion for a subsequent reconsideration of those demands. The Treasury did not say that they were never to be reconsidered, but that they were a distinct matter—that this substitution of a consolidated salary for results fees, and so on, was a good thing to which they assented, and for which they would pay all the money necessary to carry it into effect, but that they would not allow it to be used as an opening for the revival at that moment of questions which had for years been the subjects of controversy between the teachers and the Board.
If the Committee will accept that general statement from me they will understand why there has been so much misconception about this matter. I do not blame the teachers for endeavoring to better their position. They are quite within their right in so doing. But the Treasury is also within its right when it claims to settle one matter at a time, and not further to complicate an affair already sufficiently intricate by a number of other very debatable demands put forward by a large class of public servants. I claim that the plan, whether as originally conceived or as modified in the interests of the teachers, was a generous plan. A description of that plan will be found at page 26 of these papers, and I would venture to ask those who desire to understand this question to read it. I may summarize this by saying that the consolidation was a fair one, based, in most cases, upon the average of the last three years emoluments. But this was not always so. Where the sums received for the last year were very much better for the teacher than the average of the three years, in that case the Board, by a general direction, said the teacher should have the benefit of that calculation. But the teachers held themselves entitled to aim exceptional treatment whenever they disapproved of the result arrived at; and the officials of the Board have been blamed for dismissing some of these appeals without bringing them before the Commissioners sitting round the table. If the granting of the normal 330 salary for one year was only a little better than the average for the three years, it was laid down by the Treasury rule that no exceptions were to be made. Hon. Members will understand that a teacher who thought there was an absolute option, and found that if he adopted the one-year calculation he would gain £3, felt that his was an exceptional case. That was not so. According to the arrangement entered into between the Board and the Treasury, the alternative method was only to be adopted when there would be a great loss to the teacher if the ordinary method of calculation was adopted. It is clear that people can argue for ever about a matter of this kind, but we have to deal with the hard facts. So the bargain was a fair one, and the general rules adopted by the Board were sufficiently liberal to embrace the great bulk of the cases. In the opinion of the Board this was a fair bargain, and therefore, the Financial Secretary did not exceed the limits of his discretion in writing off a number of appeals which would never have been entertained for a moment if they had come before the Board. The proof of this is to be found in the fact that the archbishop has himself said that he had examined a great number of these appeals and did not find any substance in them. Was the Board to sit de die in diem in order to write polite letters to the people who made such claims as these? The plan acceded to by the Treasury was a generous plan. It was that this consolidated salary should be paid in most cases upon the average earnings of the teacher over three years. The memorandum has been impeached by the hon. Member opposite because it was claimed that extra subjects were taken into account in the consolidated salary and a teacher had written to say this had not been done. I do not say that this teacher willfully misled the hon. Member, but the explanation of it is that, as a matter of fact, for several months such was the case, but then the Board changed the rule, for they found that within the limits allowed by the Treasury it was possible to work the extra subjects into the consolidated grant and this was done. Therefore, a teacher will receive under the new rule a consolidated salary, 331 which embraces the extra subject money earned, and he will be free to take extra subjects. Therefore, in the future, a teacher can earn additional sums by teaching extra subjects, so that, in a sense, he profits twice over.
§ MR. THOMAS O'DONNELL
Does the Chief Secretary really make the statement to this House that the teacher will benefit twice over by the same subject?
§ MR. WYNDHAM
Account has been taken of the sums he used to earn by teaching extra subjects in the calculation we have made, and after doing this the teacher is still free to teach extra subjects and thus make additional money. It is only another way of putting it to say that he will get paid twice over for teaching the same subject. I think that is a very liberal way of dealing with this question. It really does not matter whether the Board found they could do this at first or a few months later. In the long run the most suspicious teacher will be convinced by the solid evidence of money in his pocket that he has not suffered but gained under these new rules. These consolidated salaries which, as I have already pointed out, include some items upon which extra money can still be earned, are also the first stage towards a steady advance as is the case in the Civil Service. There is to be a triennial increment of a certain number of pounds—in some cases as much as £7 or £12—so that the teacher who starts with £60 will gradually go up the ladder by these increments, and a far more liberal career will be opened for teachers in Irish schools than has been open to them before. I do not wish to labor the point but some hon. Members have evidently got the idea that the system is a narrow and parsimonious one. I do not pretend that the system is one which will satisfy all the teachers in Ireland, and I am not surprised that so great a change in the conditions of service of a deserving class of public servants, to whom two or three pounds annually is a matter of importance, should have brought down an avalanche of letters on the Board, and I am not surprised that a great part of the avalanche has fallen on 332 the devoted head of Archbishop Walsh, because he was known to be a true friend of the teachers. Many teachers when they cannot make head or tail of anything at once write off to the Archbishop because they believe that he will see that right is done. That is one of the melancholy effects of popularity, and I am sorry for what his Grace has had to endure during the last eighteen months.
The second pivot around which this controversy centers is the circular sent out to convent schools. A great deal has been made of this during the debate; the defense of the Board has been impugned, and an endeavor has been made to show that the memorandum was a disingenuous document, but that is not so. I cannot attach to it the interpretation the hon. and learned. Member for Waterford puts upon it.
§ MR. WYNDHAM
I really do not think that is a point of sufficient importance to justify me taking up the time of the Committee. What are the facts? The convent schools were paid a capitation rate for children educated in those schools; but owing to the magnitude and intricacy of the labor involved a change was made and a lump sum was. Substituted for the capitation rate with an undertaking that there should be an adjustment at the end of the year. The whole head and front of this offence is that in the circular sent out a clerk negligently, or stupidly, or, as I would say, somnolently, did not put in the words "lump sum," using the form of words used by previous secretaries. He told these convent schools that they would be paid at the rate of a capitation grant of £800 which was nonsense. This; official sent out the usual document stating the usual tale, but it did not state that this year the convent schools were going to get a lump sum instead of the capitation grant. An immediate inquiry is demanded; but, really, is a public inquiry required, into what has been described as the chaos and confusion of a public office because a clerk, suddenly subjected to an immense strain of work, made this mistake? I 333 would have done it over and over again it I had been as hard pressed as some of those gentlemen. I think no Chief Secretary towards the end of the session would be able to say that he had never made a lapsus calami as grievous as this for which the high officials of the Board are to be arraigned. The whole of this contention narrows itself down to this one slip in the circular, and this is made the foundation for the condemnation of the whole office. The Commissioners themselves in this memorandum plead guilty to many charges which have not been specifically preferred. They say that they have no doubt that in many letters written by hard-worked clerks there are similar slips. But when you come to the production of proof, it is this circular and the question of the special claims of teachers for the consideration of their incomes which only remain. Now, that is really the question which is before the Committee, and this is the question which has been put most urgently to myself. As has been said several times, I do not directly represent the Board in this House; but what I am asked to do is to say that a public inquiry should be granted. Hon. Members say, "Look at this; ab uno disce omnes," and so on; and in the month of July an immediate Parliamentary inquiry is demanded into the workings of the Board because of the laches—if they are laches—on the part of the overworked staff. That is the last word I have to say on that part of the debate. Towards the end of the debate quotations were produced from certain letters written by Dr. Starkie to his Grace the Archbishop of Dublin. I would only say that Archbishop Walsh received a copy of these papers at nine o'clock last night. I made great efforts that he should receive them. He has made a communication to the Freeman's Journal, in which he quotes certain letters written by Dr. Starkie to himself some months ago. [An IRISH MEMBER: The middle of May.] I am quite sure that Archbishop Walsh will feel that that was precipitate action. Now, what are the letters? It is declared that in Dr. Starkie's opinion some of the clerks—
§ MR. WYNDHAM
There is not one clerk of the first division in that office. That may be a mistake, but if so, attack the Government for putting so great an addition of work upon this office which does not contain one clerk of the first division. I stick to the word clerk. Of the gentlemen in that office who are officials there is not one clerk of the first division according to Civil Service rating, and some of them have been working for years. It may be that the burden of work on this office was as great a strain as that which fell upon the Local Government Board of England shortly after the passing of the Local Government Act. You cannot extend the office, because the legislature in one session throws an additional burden on it. It is a fact that the resident Commissioner who has been criticised, I think, mostly unjustly this evening, did suggest to his colleagues that it would be well to apply for the retirement of some of the officials of the Board, and I think the Treasury were quite agreeable that they should be retired. But the Board, from mistaken good nature, did not take that view. They thought they could get through the work without asking public servants to retire before they had qualified for full pensions. The same thing is done every day. It is a charitable and a good thing to do as regard the Members of the Civil Service of the country. Although it might have been better to retire some of the older officials, they have got through the business with these two failures, if they were failures.
§ MR. JOHN REDMOND
I am sure the right hon. Gentleman will not object to me interrupting him for one moment. He has made allusion to Dr. Starkie's letters published to-day. Does he not say—It is very difficult for a man in my position to deal with the class of men we have here among the higher officials.Then he leaves names blank, and adds——are perfectly hopeless. I cannot get—to read the rules or to adhere strictly to them, … I have to take a great deal on trust which is a bad security in this office.Does the right hon. Gentleman desire to convey to the Committee that these two 335 higher officials who are named in this letter as perfectly hopeless are clerks in the office?
§ MR. WYNDHAM
I have stated quite distinctly that they are clerks of the second division and not of the first division.
§ MR. JOHN REDMOND
I do not go into the Civil Service rating. Do they occupy the position of clerks, or secretaries, or higher officials in the office?
§ MR. WYNDHAM
I am not making a point of that. I was endeavouring to bring out the fact, and I think I have brought it out, that the higher officials in this office rank as second-division clerks, and not first-division clerks. I thought I was taking rather a generous view. I do not think the hon. Member is entitled to convey the impression to the House that I am arguing unfairly, and that I am going rather too far. We have had a reference to Dr. Starkie's letters which are published to-day. They are communications between two colleagues engaged upon a difficult task and they are letters written not for publication, but under a feeling which I suppose actuates every man who has been placed in a different situation. Even the Leader of the Irish party, I fancy, would be a little taken aback if criticisms passed by him on those with whom he co-operates were published.
§ MR. JOHN REDMOND
Does the right hon. Gentleman mean to convey that Archbishop Walsh has in a dishonourable way published private correspondence?
§ MR. WYNDHAM
I mean to convey nothing of the kind. I have spoken of Archhishop Walsh with the respect which I have uniformly entertained for him; but I do mean to defend Dr. Starkie, and I do mean to say that a public official who has been engaged for two years in an arduous task, and whose efforts have been attended with a large measure of success, ought not to be judged by a criticism passed upon any of 336 his colleagues or subordinates which was not meant for publication. If in a moment of disappointment, with the heavy duties which fall upon many of us, I have ever written a hasty letter passing a judgment on subordinates, and the man who received the letter felt bound, in the discharge of what he considered a public duty, to publish it, I would be inclined to say, "Judge me not by such letters, but by my work and by the fact that I have gone on working with these men." I would remind hon. Gentlemen opposite that Dr. Walsh has himself paid a high tribute to the resident Commissioner which was published in the Freeman's Journal, in which he said that, thanks to the energy and working power of the newly-appointed resident Commissioner, everything has been got into working order. The record of that office, perhaps not adequately manned, is not a bad record, but a good record. The granting of such an inquiry as is asked for would be accepted from one end of the land to the other as a condemnation passed upon the loyalty and business energy of every man in the subordinate ranks of that office. After anxiously looking into the whole of these facts, I am clear that, if I were to say that such an inquiry should be granted now at the end of the session, I should be committing an act of great injustice to the resident Commissioner and those who work with and under him. That does not mean that I consider we have reached the acme of perfection in education in Ireland. On that I offer no opinion whatever. I know that it would be absurd to institute an inquiry at this moment towards the end of the session. I know that it would be unjust to do so. I know that it would be impolitic to do so until the staff have completed the work they have carried so far. If after that we need more enlightenment, I should be the last man to throw obstacles in the way.
I turn from that section of the remarks of the hon. Member for Waterford to the main drift and purpose of this debate, namely, that this is but another illustration of our incapacity to govern in Ireland. [HON. MEMBERS on the Irish Benches: Hear, hear.] When I say "our," I mean the united Parliament, in which both British and Irish Members have seats. 337 If this is but another elusive turning movement in order to harrass us, I can assure hon. Gentlemen opposite that the deliberate conviction is that a united Parliament and a united Exchequer is, upon the whole, things being as they are, best for the welfare of both countries. At any rate, the system of education we are giving in Ireland is not from party motives. The hon. Member for North Louth quoted some figures which were calculated to lead to the belief that Scotland was treated more generously than Ireland in the matter of State-aided education, but the fact is that, whereas in Ireland only 500,000 go to school, in Scotland 630,000 children go to school, and therefore while it is quite true that the Estimates showed that a larger grant of public money goes to Scotland than to Ireland, it is also true that the capitation rate of State money received by Ireland is far higher than in the case of Scotland or of England. The cost per child in England of State money from the united Exchequer of the two countries is £1 15s. 6d., in Scotland £1 16s. 6d., and in Ireland £2 8s. 1d. Hon. Members who have studied this question must be aware that the Treasury is usually guided by the consideration that they will give to those who make an effort on their own behalf and where local contributions are high, the higher Treasury grant is usually conceded. Comparing the countries apart upon that basis, and leaving out the training colleges and building grants, the figures are—in Ireland, £2 5s. 3¾d.; in England, £1 14s. 5d.; and in Scotland £1 14s. 8d. But in England, in the case of board schools, there is a local contribution of £1 4s. 7½d. for board schools, and for voluntary schools 9s. 4½d. In Scotland the local contribution for board schools of £1 12s. 2d., and for voluntary schools of £1 4s. 9d.; whereas in the case of Ireland the local contribution only amounts to 2s. 7¼d.
§ MR. WYNDHAM
I do not laugh at the result, for I think it is a very sad result. I do not put it down to the 338 blame of Ireland; I put it down to the complexity of the problem with which they are confronted, and when I hear how members lightly suggest that we should sweep away that system without having found another to put in its place, then I know they are in the Opposition and not in the Government. What is the nature of this problem in Ireland? In Ireland a denominational system does in the main prevail. It is the system which they desired. It is true that the first idea of the National Board, when constituted in 1831, consisted in its entirety in the model schools, and the provision that there should be no religious teaching during class hours was embodied to a great extent; but if we leave ideas and come to facts it is a fact that, taking the schools under Roman Catholic management entirely, we find in them 94.7 per cent. of Catholics and only 5.3 per cent. of Protestants. In the schools under Protestant management, there are 9.8 Catholics and 90.2 Protestants, and, therefore, it is fair to say, broadly speaking, that Irish education is denominational. It has been suggested that the Government, because they are anti-Nationalist and unsympathetic, are wilfully withholding from the Irish people the system they desire, but, on the contrary, the denominational system is recognised far more in Ireland than in England or Scotland. What makes the Irish system of education so expensive is the multiplication of schools and teachers, which is due to the fact that we in so large a measure recognise the desire for denominational education. There is another thing which is desired all over Ireland—that is the complete independence of the managers of those schools. The proposal to drop the Board and to provide a new system of education is not a practical one at the present moment. There is another difficulty which we have to face. At each end of the spectrum there is an extreme demand, which is held in the north with as great a tenacity of religious conviction as any conviction held by the Roman Catholics in the south, that there ought to be in Ireland some symbol of purely secular education. There are model schools, and the children there cost £4 10s. a head, but if we withdraw that we would inflict upon 339 400,000 Irishmen precisely what they allege is sometimes inflicted on the Roman Catholics in the south. If it is right to keep up the model schools it is right to keep up the convent and monastic schools at the other end, and between them we have this complicated system of denominational education. That is why Irish education is so dear, and I hesitate to say that the moment has come in which any man, however sanguine, can say, "I will sweep away this system." It is a system which does give effective representation to all these denominational desires, and I doubt whether the county council, or any other elected bodies, would be able to solve the problem without giving umbrage to either the Presbyterians in the north or the Roman Catholics in the south. Therefore, while I feel that there is no ground for inquiry into the work of the officials of the office, I recognise that there is a wider, a broader, question for discussing which this Vote presents the only opportunity. I accordingly make no complaint that it has been raised, but while making no complaint I do say that the Amendment is not opportune, and that it is not in my power to set a time when a statesman would be in a position to declare that he has a confident solution for a problem which embraces so many complexities.
§ MR. DILLON
said that after this long interesting debate on one of the most important subjects which could concern the life of the Irish people, he desired to take note at the very outstart of one remarkable fact that must have impressed the Chief Secretary, namely, that, although the debate had gone on for eight hours, no Irish Member had risen to defend the Board, except the hon. Member for South Derry, who expected to get a seat on the Treasury Bench soon. He had noticed with interest that at the early stages of the debate the right hon. Gentleman the distinguished Member for Trinity College was in his place, and on any education debate one would have expected to hear some contribution to it from that right hon. Gentleman; but after sitting for two hours in the House he had retired from the scene. In the opening sen- 340 tences of the speech of the Chief Secretary in reply to the hon. Member for Connemara, he stated correctly that, whatever might be in the mind of the Archbishop of Dublin as to the capacity of the Board for carrying on the educational work in Ireland, his public statements and his demands were confined practically to the working of the office. The Chief Secretary complained that, whereas the public statements of the archbishop were directed towards calling attention to the chaos and confusion which prevailed in the office, his resignation was made the occasion by the Irish Members for a general assault on the whole system of education in Ireland. That was perfectly true, but why was that? It had been admirably stated by the hon. Member for Waterford that for fifty years, until the Archbishop of Dublin had been persuaded to join the Board, this Board had been the constant object of attack by all the Catholic party in Ireland, and did not enjoy the slightest atom of the confidence of the Irish people. When the Archbishop of Dublin, who was recognised on all hands as a great educational expert, and who had been recognised as such by the Chief Secretary, saw his way to join the Board, all the Irish Members felt it to be their duty to live in hope that the archbishop would produce great results in the improvement of primary education in Ireland, and from that day for several years, except directing attention to small grievances, the Irish party did not criticise the action of the National Board; it was left to do its work in peace. The archbishop did succeed in carrying out, under great difficulties, with the aid of some of its members, a great work of educational reform. He frankly said so much, and however he distrusted the Board and its whole system he would have regretted if there had been denied to the new system a fair chance of being tried in Ireland. That explained why it was that the pent-up waters of indignation and distrust of the Board had broken loose, because they saw in the resignation of the archbishop not only the cause stated by him in the public communication addressed to the press, but the disappearance of the last shred of hope they had of any satisfactory 341 administration of primary education in Ireland by this hybrid and extraordinary Board. That was why they had raised this question, and he gave the Chief Secretary notice that this debate was only a sample of what was to come. He acquitted the Chief Secretary of any intentional unfairness in the matter, but he thought the right hon. Gentleman had been exceedingly unfair to the archbishop when he said that while the resignation of the archbishop was not a small affair, in his opinion, the events which led up to the resignation of the archbishop were exceedingly trivial and utterly too small to be the cause of so important an event. He took a totally different view.
He noticed that towards the close of his speech the Chief Secretary had dwelt chiefly on the circular issued to convents in relation to the capitation grant. That circular was a gross blunder, but the right hon. Gentleman was quite mistaken in saying that the archbishop had placed that in the forefront of his complaint. The archbishop only gave that as a sample, and could any man who read the papers doubt that that circular was a very striking instance of the chaos that reigned in the office? It was on a most important matter. The circular was addressed to the managers of the convent schools, who were exceedingly anxious to know what they were going to get from the capitation grant. This circular was sent broadcast over the country. The circular did not mean anything, for it was rubbish. It did not convey to the teachers what they were going to get. He thought the clerk who sent out those circulars ought to be very severely censured. What he wished to put forward was that this was not the ground put forward by the archbishop for his resignation. He did not particularly wish to mention any permanent officials. The Financial Assistant-Secretary was in the enjoyment of £800 per year, and he was a very important official. Supposing they accepted the argument of the Chief Secretary, that made the action of this official all the more reprehensible, and it was astonishing that this official should have taken upon his own shoulders the authority of the Board, for he had practically set the Board at 342 defiance. The Chief Secretary had stated in a kind of light and airy way that the schoolmistresses of Ireland had claimed exceptional treatment. Certain schoolmistresses complained when the new rule fixing their salaries was announced, and their complaints were abundantly justified. The Board itself issued a public statement saying that in every instance in which it could be shown by a schoolmaster or manager that the three years average worked inequitably they would reconsider such cases. The Archbishop of Dublin was appealed to by a number of teachers who thought their cases had been inequitably dealt with by the new rules, and he wrote several public letters and made speeches attracting attention to this pledge of the Board, and he made several angry speeches about it. The archbishop asked if the teachers of Ireland had so little confidence in his honour as to doubt that the pledge given by the Board would be carried out to the very letter. What happened? He said—The average income of those teachers for the last three years of the old system was taken as a starting point. That average income would, no doubt, in some cases, and indeed in many cases, he inequitable as a basis for definitely fixing a teacher's salary. But as a starting point, nothing better could be taken; and so it was agreed to, with the important proviso, however, which was fully sanctioned by the Treasury, that in any cases in which the principle of the three years average would be found to work out inequitably, would be specially considered.Very soon there came pouring in upon me letters from all parts of the country, from teachers, from managers, from others, bitterly complaining that in reply to respectful requests for equitable consideration of particular cases, they had received official letters telling them that the rule of the three years average was 'universal'; that the matter was arranged by Treasury rules, that the Commissioners were bound by those Treasury rules; that the matter was now definitely settled; and that if the teacher of a particular school looked for an increase in income, he should look for it through an improvement in his school in future.Those official letters practically made the archbishop a liar, a public liar, by breaking the pledge given to the country by himself and his colleagues. The archbishop further said—Confronted with a state of facts such as this, I could not but feel that my personal honour, the personal honour of every Commis- 343 sioner of National Education, was at stake. We had publicly pledged ourselves to give equitable consideration to cases in which our new rules might work inequitably. A paid official of ours had taken it upon himself to state, in I do not know how many official letters, that we had no power to do anything of the kind. Without communication of any kind with the commissioners, he dealt with the cases himself. He ruled them out. So far as it lay with him, the commissioners should not even know that a request for the equitable consideration of those cases had ever reached the office.Now they were told that the events complained of were trivial in the extreme, and utterly too insignificant to justify the archbishop taking so serious a step. Did the Chief Secretary consider that the personal honour of the archbishop and the carrying out of his pledge to the teachers of Ireland was a trivial matter? He considered that upon that ground alone the archbishop's action was abundantly justified, and he was driven to take the only course open to him in order to keep faith with the public, and draw attention to the scandalous condition of things existing on the Board itself.
He wished to say a word or two in reference to what the Chief Secretary had said in regard to the officials of the staff. Clearly it was incumbent upon the archbishop to publish those letters. The Chief Secretary had alluded, in the course of his speech, to a most important document, and that was the memorandum adopted at the meeting of the Board in reply to the archbishop's statement. They were supposed to have for their information in this debate a full report of the minutes of the Board, but they had got nothing of the kind. He would read the minute of that important meeting at which the Board adopted their memorandum of defence. The Resident Commissioner submitted an official memorandum dealing with various matters, which were considered in detail. The Chief Secretary had alluded to this as Mr. Starkie's memorandum.
§ MR. DILLON
said they were left in ignorance as to what part of that memorandum was the work of the Resident Commissioner, and what part was due to the decision of the Board. One of the commissioners left the Tralee Quarter Sessions in order to attend the meeting of the commissioners. This was an imperfect copy of the minutes, and it left them in darkness as to what paragraph of this memorandum was the work of Dr. Starkie. The document concluded with the following passage—In his letter of the 2nd of July the archbishop practically narrows his charges against the office down to the issue of the 'circular' already referred to, but he makes the statement that during the six years he was a member of the Board he never saw the slightest approach to chaos or 'confusion' at the Board. Yet it is suggested that the office, which supplied the Board for six years, regularly and in proper form, with material for consideration, is in a state of 'chaos' and 'confusion.'On the contrary, the office has passed successfully through an extremely trying and critical time, and the officers deserve as a body to be congratulated on their loyal endeavours to carry out the wishes of the Board.Under those circumstances he thought the archbishop was more than justified in publishing those letters. It was utterly absurd for the Chief Secretary to state that the events which led up to the archbishop's resignation were slight or insignificant events, which did not justify the action he took. There were no less than 2,700 applications for special consideration sent in by the teachers, at the invitation of the Board, after the pledge had been given that they would be considered. What did the Financial Assistant Secretary do with them? Without consulting the Board, and evidently without getting the authority of the resident commissioner himself, he undertook, on his own sole authority, to deal absolutely and finally with about 2,400 out of 2,700 applications, and he wrote in many instances very curt and exasperating letters to the teachers. He replied saying that their claims would not be considered, and that the hands of the Board were tied by Treasury rules. Was it to be wondered at that the Archbishop of Dublin should be indignant when letters complaining that his pledge had been set at naught should be treated in this way? The Chief 345 Secretary had stated that the Board could not possibly have considered those letters. He contended that this official ought to have brought the position of affairs before the Board. What right had he to sit in judgment and constitute himself into a kind of Sultan or Khedive in regard to those letters, and decide upon them without consulting his superiors? The Chief Secretary had drawn a picture of the Board sitting week after week considering those 2,700 letters. A more grotesque misrepresentation of the case could not be imagined. Those letters dealt with a certain class of case, and any intelligent clerk could have classified them under fifteen or ten headings. At all events, there was not a shred or a shadow of excuse for the position taken up by the Chief Secretary, who had contended that it was a very slight and trivial mistake for a clerk to sweep away the entire authority of the Board and ignore the pledged word of the Board. A more grotesque act of insubordination and a more striking instance of the hopeless condition of the organisation of the Education Office he had never heard of. What did the archbishop do? Did he immediately resign his position? He did nothing of the kind. The archbishop came down to a meeting of the commissioners on the 18th of June, and he moved a resolution drawing attention to this matter. He said—I will move that the Resident Commissioner be requested in any cases that may have come—or may come—under his notice of letters sent out from the office by any of our officials, incorrectly stating any rule of the Board, to direct the official who has signed any such letter to write to the person to whom it has been addressed—as was directed to be done in the case of the letter of 25/4/01 to the Secretary of the Gaelic League—informing him that the letter is to be regarded as withdrawn on the score of inaccuracy, and substituting for it a letter written strictly in accordance with the rules of the Board.That was the archbishop's motion, of which he gave notice. But the archbishop did not stop there. He withdrew this motion after making a statement, and at the next meeting of the Board, on the 25th of June, the Lord Chief Baron moved the following Amendment—'I move as an Amendment that the views referred to in the minute be stated explicitly, and further, that Mr. Young be directed for 346 the future to send out the circular settled by the Resident Commissioner.'On a division being taken on the Lord Chief Baron's Amendment, the following is the result:—For:—Sir Percy Grace, Mr. Morell, the Lord Chief Baron, the Rev. Dr. Wilson, and Mr. Molloy.Against:—Mr. Dease, Sir Malcolm J. Inglis, Sir R. Blennerhassett, Judge Shaw, Professor Dowden, Rev. Dr. Bernard, Dr. Starkie, and Dr. Traill.In other words, the minutes of the proceedings having been falsely entered on the books, an attempt to get them altered was defeated. Accordingly on the 1st of July, as soon as the minutes of the meeting on the 25th of June were communicated to the archbishop, he wrote a letter explaining why he attached very great importance to the appearance on the minutes of a complete statement of the points of the agreement that was arrived at, in view of which his motion was withdrawn. He gave three reasons, as follows—I.—That the Financial Assistant Secretary should be informed that the view taken by him of his official duties, as stated in his printed memorandum to the Resident Commissioner, was incorrect, and that he was not justified in taking the course which, in that memorandum, he 'maintained' that he was justified in taking, namely, keeping back from the consideration of the commissioners, and deciding, on his own authority, cases in which special consideration by the commissioners was claimed under rule 43.II —That the Financial Assistant Secretary should be directed, in replying to any such claims in future, to send to the applicant, not the form of reply which he had been in the habit of sending, but the form which had been drawn up for him some months ago by the Resident Commissioner, and which he had then been directed by the Resident Commissioner to send in all such cases.III.—That there should be sent out, this month, to all teachers and managers, with the orders for payment of teachers' salaries for the quarter ending on the 30th of June, a statement that the commissioners have power to consider specially cases in which, in their judgment, any of the new rules, from 36 to 42 inclusive, would operate inequitably, and that, as regards cases in which such consideration had already been claimed, none of those cases had as yet been considered by the commissioners.Those were the three Instructions which were unanimously agreed to, and upon which the archbishop consented to withdraw his motion, which was regarded as a censure upon the Financial Assistant Secretary. It would scarcely be believed 347 that the minutes were altered, and those three items he had just quoted were not inserted. Therefore, it was evident that the archbishop had done everything he could to alter this scandalous state of things in the office, but, in spite of everything he could do, this assistant secretary tary was determined to defy the archbishop and his colleagues, and he continued sending out those circulars, refusing to consider the claims of the teachers, who had been treated very badly. He thought he had made out a very good case for the archbishop taking the course which he had taken.
He had no doubt it was an infinite relief to the archbishop to be rid of the Board. To his own knowledge the archbishop had given an enormous amount of labour to the work, and also in connection with the inquiry on manual training, and from the record of his treatment on the Board he should not be surprised if it was a great relief to the archbishop to give it up. There was one other matter to which he desired to direct attention, and that was the question of the residual grant. The Chief Secretary, in his speech, stated that he was unconvinced, and was still prepared to maintain that the balance of the residual grant was not due to the teachers. He noticed that hon. Members cheered that statement of the Chief Secretary, and he was amused, because not one hon. Member opposite knew anything at all about such a complicated subject. When the question was raised last year in the House, the Chief Secretary, instructed by the Education Office, denied that anything was due to the teachers at all.
§ MR. DILLON
said that last year the office denied that any money was due to the teachers, but it turned out that the claim of the teachers was right, and they were paid. He looked into the matter, chiefly because of the extremely able letter from the Archbishop of Dublin, which had appeared in the press, in which it was proved with all the clearness of a mathematical problem that many thousands of pounds were due to the teachers under the residual grant. There was a balance of many thousands of pounds on the residual grant still due to the teachers of Ireland, but by an absurd trick of bookkeeping the officials were seeking to deprive the teachers of it. The teachers were convinced that they were right, and they would probably get the amount after a considerable amount of argument and squabbling. It must be manifest that these disputes were most unfortunate, and it was no wonder that Irish teachers were suspicious. He had no doubt that a great deal of the irritation and discontent felt by the teachers was due to the action of the Financial Secretary and certain other officials. He hoped the Chief Secretary would take up the question of the residual grant, and study it during the vacation. The resignation of Dr. Walsh would have great and far-reaching effects on the future of education in Ireland, and, for one thing, it certainly would set the Irish Members free to express their opinions in very plain language as to the operations of the Board.
§ Question put—
§ The Committee divided:—Ayes, 87, Noes, 178. (Division List No. 330).351
|Abraham, Wm. (Cork, N. E.)||Brunner, Sir John Tomlinson||Cogan, Denis J.|
|Ambrose, Robert||Burke, E. Haviland-||Condon, Thomas Joseph|
|Barry, E. (Cork, S.)||Caldwell, James||Crean, Eugene|
|Black, Alexander William||Campbell, John (Armagh, S.)||Cullinan, J.|
|Boland, John||Carew, James Laurence||Delany, William|
|Brigg, John||Causton, Richard Knight||Dillon, John|
|Brown, Geo. M. (Edinburgh)||Clancy, John Joseph||Doogan, P. C.|
|Douglas, Charles M. (Lanark)||M'Dermott, Patrick||O'Mara, James|
|Duffy, William J.||M'Killop, W. (Sligo, North)||O'Shaughnessy, P. J.|
|Evans, Samuel T. (Glamorgan||Minch, Matthew||O'Shee, James John|
|Ferguson, R. C. Munro (Leith||Mooney, John J.||Power, Patrick Joseph|
|Ffrench, Peter||Morton, Edw. J. C. (Devonport)||Reddy, M.|
|Flavin, Michael Joseph||Murnaghan, George||Redmond, John E. (Waterford)|
|Flynn, James Christopher||Murphy, John||Redmond, William (Clare)|
|Gilhooly, James||Nannetti, Joseph P.||Rickett, J. Compton|
|Gladstone, Rt. Hon. Herbert J.||Newnes, Sir George||Rigg, Richard|
|Hammond, John||Nolan, Col. J. P. (Galway, N.)||Roberts, John H. (Denbighs.)|
|Hayden, John Patrick||Nolan, Joseph (Louth, South)||Roche, John|
|Hayne, Rt. Hn. Charles Seale-||O'Brien, James F. X. (Cork)||Schwann, Charles E.|
|Hemphill, Rt. Hon. Charles H.||O'Brien, Kendal Tipperary, Mid||Sheehan, Daniel Daniel|
|Jones, William (Carnarvonshire||O'Brien, Patrick (Kilkenny)||Spencer, Rt. Hn. CR (Northants|
|Joyce, Michael||O'Brien, P. J. (Tipperary, N.)||Sullivan, Donal|
|Kennedy, Patrick James||O'Connor, Jas. (Wicklow, W.)||Thomas, F. Freeman-(Hastings)|
|Leamy, Edmund||O'Connor, T. P. (Liverpool)||Thomson, F. W. (York, W. R.)|
|Leigh, Sir Joseph||O'Donnell, John (Mayo, S.)||Tully, Jasper|
|Lough, Thomas||O'Donnell, T. (Kerry, W.)||White, Patrick (Meath, North)|
|Lundon, W.||O'Dowd, John||Young, Samuel|
|MacDonnell, Dr. Mark A.||O'Kelly, Conor (Mayo, N.)||TELLERS FOR THE AYES—Sir Thomas Esmonde and Captain Donelan.|
|MacNeill, John Gordon Swift||O'Kelly, James (Roscommon, N.|
|M'Arthur, William (Cornwall)||O'Malley, William|
|Acland-Hood, Capt. Sir Alex. F.||Dimsdale, Sir Joseph Cockfield||Hutton, John (Yorks, N. R.)|
|Agg-Gardner, James Tynte||Disraeli, Coningsby Ralph||Johnstone, Heywood (Sussex)|
|Agnew, Sir Andrew Noel||Dixon-Hartland, Sir Fred Dixon||Kenyon, Hn. G. T. (Denbigh)|
|Allhusen, Augustus H. Eden||Douglas, Rt. Hon. A. Akers-||Kenyon-Slaney, Col. W. (Salop.)|
|Anson, Sir William Reynell||Doxford, Sir William Theodore||Keswick, William|
|Arkwright, John Stanhope||Durning-Lawrence, Sir Edwin||Knowles, Lees|
|Arnold-Forster, Hugh O.||Egerton, Hon. A. de Tatton||Lambton, Hn. Frederick Wm.|
|Atkinson, Rt. Hon. John||Elliot, Hon. A. Ralph Douglas||Lawrence, W. F. (Liverpool)|
|Bain, Colonel James Robert||Fellowes, Hon. Ailwyn Edw.||Lawson, John Grant|
|Baird, John George Alexander||Fergusson, Rt. Hn. Sir J. (Manc'r||Lecky, Rt. Hon. William Edw. H.|
|Balfour, Rt. Hon. A. J. (Manch'r||Fielden, Edward Brocklehurst||Legge, Col. Hon. Heneage|
|Balfour, Capt. C. B. (Hornsey)||Finlay, Sir Robert Bannatyne||Leigh-Bennett, Henry Currie|
|Balfour, Rt. Hn. Gerald W. (Leeds||Fisher, William Hayes||Long, Col. Charles W. (Evesham)|
|Banbury, Frederick George||FitzGerald, Sir Robert Penrose-||Long, Rt. Hn. Walter (Bristol, S.|
|Barry, Sir Francis T. (Windsor)||Fitzroy, Hon. Edward Algernon||Lonsdale, John Brownlee|
|Bathurst, Hon. Allen Benjamin||Flower, Ernest||Lowther, C. (Cumb., Eskdale)|
|Beach, Rt. Hn. Sir M. H. (Bristol)||Forster, Henry William||Lucas, Col. Francis (Lowestoft)|
|Bentinck, Lord Henry C.||Foster, P. S. (Warwick, S. W.)||Lucas, Reginald J. (Portsmouth|
|Bhownaggree, Sir M. M.||Galloway, William Johnson||Lyttelton, Hon. Alfred|
|Bignold, Arthur||Gibbs, Hn. A. G. H. (City of Lond.||MacIver, David (Liverpool)|
|Bigwood, James||Gordon, Hn. J. E. (Elgin & Nairn||M'Calmont, Col. H. L. B. (Cambs)|
|Bill, Charles||Gordon, J. (Londonderry, S.)||Majendie, James A. H.|
|Brodrick, Rt. Hon. St. John||Gordon, Maj Evans-(T'rH'ml'ts||Malcolm, Ian|
|Bull, William James||Gorst, Rt. Hn. Sir John Eldon||Manners, Lord Cecil|
|Bullard, Sir Harry||Goschen, Hn. George Joachim||Maple, Sir John Blundell|
|Burdetts-Coutts, W.||Goulding, Edward Alfred||Martin, Richard Biddulph|
|Butcher, John George||Graham, Henry Robert||Massey-Mainwaring, Hn. W. F.|
|Cautley, Henry Strother||Gray, Ernest (West Ham)||Maxwell, W. J. H. (Dumfriessh.)|
|Cavendish, R. F. (N. Lancs.)||Greene, Sir EW (B'rySEdmunds||Morgan, Hn. Fred. (Monm'thsh.|
|Cavendish, V. C. W. (Derbysh.||Greene, Henry D. (Shrewsbury)||Morris, Hon. Martin Henry F.|
|Cayzer, Sir Charles William||Grenfell, William Henry||Morton, Arthur H. A. (Deptf'rd)|
|Cecil, Evelyn (Aston Manor)||Gretton, John||Mowbray, Sir Robert Gray C.|
|Chamberlain, Rt. Hn. J. (Birm.||Greville, Hon. Ronald||Murray, Rt. Hn. A. Graham (Bute|
|Chamberlain, J. A. (Worc'r)||Hambro, Charles Eric||Murray, Charles J. (Coventry)|
|Chapman, Edward||Hamilton, Rt. Hn. Lord G.(Midd'x||Murray, Col. Wyndham (Bath|
|Charrington, Spencer||Hamilton, Marq of (L'nd'nderry|
|Churchill, Winston Spencer||Hanbury, Rt. Hn. Robert Wm.||Nicol, Donald Ninian|
|Cochrane, Hon. Thos. H. A. E.||Hardy, Laurence (Kent, Ashfo'd||Orr-Ewing, Charles Lindsay|
|Collings, Rt. Hon. Jesse||Haslam, Sir Alfred S.||Palmer, Walter (Salisbury)|
|Compton, Lord Alwyne||Hay, Hon. Claude George||Pease, Herbert Pike (Darlington|
|Cook, Sir Frederick Lucas||Heath, Arthur Howard (Hanley||Penn, John|
|Corbett, A. Cameron (Glasgow||Heath, James (Staffords., N. W.)||Platt-Higgins, Frederick|
|Cox, Irwin Edward Bainbridge||Hermon-Hodge, Robert Trotter||Powell, Sir Francis Sharp|
|Cranborne, Viscount||Hope, J. F. (Sheffield, Brightside||Pretyman, Ernest George|
|Cripps, Charles Alfred||Hornby, Sir William Henry||Purvis, Robert|
|Dalkeith, Earl of||Hoult, Joseph||Pym, C. Guy|
|Digby, John K. D. Wingfield-||Hudson, George Bickersteth||Randles, John S.|
|Reid, James (Greenock)||Spear, John Ward||Whiteley, H. (Ashton-un.-Lyne|
|Rentoul, James Alexander||Stanley, Hn. Arthur (Ormskirk||Whitmore, Charles Algernon|
|Ridley, S. Forde (Bethnal Green)||Stanley, Lord (Lancs.)||Wilson, A. Stanley (York, E. R.)|
|Ritchie, Rt. Hn. Chas. Thomson||Stuwart, Sir Mark J. M'Taggart||Wilson, John (Falkirk)|
|Round, James||Sturtt, Hon. Charles Hedley||Wilson, John (Glasgow)|
|Russell, T. W.||Sturt, Hon. Humphry Napier||Wilson, J. W. (Worcestersh, N.)|
|Rutherford, John||Talbot, Lord E. (Chichester)||Wilson-Todd, Wm. H. (Yorks.)|
|Sackville, Col. S. G. Stopford-||Thornton, Percy M.||Wolff, Gustav Wilhelm|
|Sassoon, Sir Edward Albert||Tollemache, Henry James||Wyndham, Rt. Hon. George|
|Scott, Sir S. (Marylebone, W.)||Tufnell, Lieut.-Col. Edward||Younger, William|
|Seton-Karr, Henry||Valentia, Viscount|
|Sharpe, William Edward T.||Vincent, Sir Edgar (Exeter)||TELLERS FOR THE NOES—Sir William Walrond and Mr. Anstruther.|
|Smith, James Parker (Lanarks.)||Welby, Sir Charles G. E. (Notts.)|
|Smith, Hn. W. F. D. (Strand)||Wentworth, Bruce C. Vernon-|
§ Original Question again proposed—
§ And, objection being taken to further proceeding, the CHAIRMAN proceeded to interrupt the Business—
§ Whereupon Mr. WYNDHAM rose in his352
§ place, and claimed to move, "That the Question be now put."
§ Question put, "That the Question be now put."
§ The Committee divided:—Ayes, 175; Noes, 81. (Division List No. 331.)353
|Acland-Hood, Capt. Sir Alex. F.||Digby, John K. D. Wingfield||Hope, J. F. (Sheffield, Brightside|
|Agg-Gardner, James Tynte||Dimsdale, Sir Joseph Cockfield||Hornby, Sir William Henry|
|Agnew, Sir Andrew Noel||Disraeli, Coningsby Ralph||Hoult, Joseph|
|Allhusen, Augustus Henry E.||Dixon-Hartland, Sir Fred Dixon||Hudson, George Bickersteth|
|Anson, Sir William Reynell||Douglas, Rt. Hon. A. Akers-||Hutton, John (Yorks. N. R.)|
|Arkwright, John Stanhope||Doxford, Sir William Theodore||Johnstone, Heywood (Sussex)|
|Arnold-Forster, Hugh O.||Durning-Lawrence, Sir Edwin||Kenyon, Hn. Geo. T. (Denbigh)|
|Atkinson, Rt. Hon. John||Egerton, Hon. A. de Tatton||Kenyon-Slaney, Col. W. (Salop.)|
|Bain, Colonel James Robert||Elliot, Hon. A. Ralph Douglas||Keswick, William|
|Balfour, Rt. Hn. A. J. (Manch'r)||Fellowes, Hon. Ailwyn Edward||Knowles, Lees|
|Balfour, Capt. C. B. (Hornsey)||Fergusson, Rt. Hn. Sir J. (Manc'r||Lambton, Hon. Frederick W.|
|Balfour, Rt. Hn. Gerald W. (Leeds||Fielden, Edward Brocklehurst||Lawrence, Wm. F. (Liverpool)|
|Banbury, Frederck George||Finch, George H.||Lawson, John Grant|
|Barry, Sir Francis T. (Windsor)||Finlay, Sir Robert Bannatyne||Lecky, Rt. Hon. William Edw. H.|
|Bathurst, Hon. Allen Benjamin||Fisher, William Hayes||Legge, Col. Hon. Heneage|
|Beach, Rt, Hn. Sir M. H. (Bristol)||FitzGerald, Sir Robert Penrose-||Leigh-Bennett, Henry Currie|
|Bentinck, Lord Henry C.||Fitzroy, Hon. Edward Algernon||Long, Col. Charles W. (Evesham)|
|Bhownageree, Sir M. N.||Flower, Ernest||Long, Rt. Hn. Walter (Bristol, S.)|
|Bignold, Arthur||Forster, Henry William||Lonsdale, John Brownlee|
|Bigwood, James||Foster, PhilipS.(W'rwick, S. W.)||Lowther, C. (Cumb., Eskdale)|
|Bill, Charles||Galloway, William Johnson||Lucas, Col. Francis (Lowestoft)|
|Brodrick, Rt. Hon. St. John||Gibbs, Hn. A. G. H. (City of Lond.||Lucas, Reginald J. (Portsmouth|
|Bull, William James||Gordon, Hn. J. E. (Elgin & Nairn||Lyttelton, Hon. Alfred|
|Bullard, Sir Harry||Gordon, J. (Londonderry, S.)||M'Calmont, Col. H. L. B. (Cambs.|
|Burdett-Coutts, W.||Gordon, Maj Evans-(T'rH'mlets||Majendie, James A. H.|
|Butcher, John George||Gorst, Rt. Hon. Sir John Eldon||Malcolm, Ian|
|Cautley, Henry Strother||Goschen, Hon. George Joachim||Manners, Lord Cecil|
|Cavendish, R. F. (N. Lancs.)||Goulding, Edward Alfred||Maple, Sir John Blundell|
|Cavendish, V. C. W. (Derbyshire||Graham, Henry Robert||Martin, Richard Biddulph|
|Cayzer, Sir Charles William||Gray, Ernest (West Ham)||Massey-Mainwaring, Hn. W. F.|
|Cecil, Evelyn (Aston Manor)||Greene, Sir EW(B'rySEdm'nds||Maxwell, W. J. H. (Dumfriessh.|
|Chamberlain, Rt. Hn. J. (Birm.)||Greene, Henry D. (Shrewsbury||Morgan, Hn. F. (Monmouthsh.)|
|Chamberlain, J. Austen (Worc'r||Grenfell, William Henry||Morris, Hon. Martin Henry F.|
|Chapman, Edward||Gretton, John||Morton, Arthur H. A. (Deptford|
|Charrington, Spencer||Greville, Hon. Ronald||Mowbray, Sir Robert Gray C.|
|Churchill, Winston Spencer||Hambro, Charles Eric||Murray, Rt. Hn. A Graham (Bute|
|Cochrane, Hon. Thos. H. A. E.||Hamilton, Rt. Hn. Lord G. (Mid'x||Murray, Charles J. (Coventry)|
|Collings, Rt. Hon. Jesse||Hamilton, Marq of (L'nd'nderry||Murray, Col. Wyndham(Bath)|
|Compton, Lord Alwyne||Hanbury, Rt. Hon. Robert Wm.|
|Cook, Sir Frederick Lucas||Hardy, Laurence (Kent, Ashf'rd||Nicol, Donald Ninian|
|Corbett, A. Cameron (Glasgow)||Haslam, Sir Alfred S.||Orr-Ewing, Charles Lindsay|
|Cox, Irwin Edward Bainbridge||Hay, Hon. Claude George||Palmer, Walter (Salisbury)|
|Cranborne, Viscount||Heath, Arthur Howard (Hanley||Pease, Herbert Pike (Darlington|
|Cripps, Charles Alfred||Heath, James (Staffords, N. W.||Penn, John|
|Dalkeith, Earl of||Hermon-Hodge, Robert Trotter||Platt-Higgins, Frederick|
|Powell, Sir Francis Sharp||Sharpe, William Edward T.||Welby, Sir Charles G. E. (Notts.)|
|Pretyman, Ernest George||Smith, James Parker (Lanarks.)||Wentworth, Bruce C. Vernon-|
|Purvis, Robert||Smith, Hon. W. F. D. (Strand)||Whiteley, H (Ashton und. Lyne|
|Pym, C. Guy||Spear, John Ward||Whitmore, Chaeles Algernon|
|Randles, John S.||Stanley, Hn. Arthur Ormskirk||Wilson, A. Stanley (York, E. R.)|
|Reid, James (Greenock)||Stanley, Lord (Lancs.)||Wilson, John (Glasgow)|
|Rentoul, James Alexander||Stewart, Sir Mark J. M'Taggart||Wilson, J. W. (Worcestersh, N.)|
|Ridley, S. Forde (Bethnal Green)||Strutt, Hon. Charles Hedley||Wilson-Todd, Wm. H. (Yorks.)|
|Ritchie, Rt. Hn. Chas. Thomson||Sturt, Hon. Humphry Napier||Wolff, Gustav Wilheln,|
|Round, James||Talbot, Lord E. (Chichester)||Wyndham, Rt. Hon George|
|Rutherford, John||Thornton, Percy M.||Younger, William|
|Sackville, Col. S. G. Stopford-||Tollemache, Henry James|
|Sassoon, Sir Edward Albert||Tufnell, Lieut.-Col. Edward||TELLERS FOR THE AYES—Sir William Walrond and Mr. Anstruther.|
|Scott, Sir S. (Marylebone, W.)||Valentia, Viscount|
|Seton-Karr, Henry||Vincent, Sir Edgar (Exeter)|
|Abraham, William (Cork, N. E.)||Hayden, John Patrick||O'Donnell, T. (Kerry, W.)|
|Ambrose, Robert||Hayne, Rt. Hn. Charles Seale-||O'Dowd, John|
|Barry, E. (Cork, S.)||Jones, Wm. (Carnarvonshire)||O'Kelly, Conor (Mayo, N.)|
|Black, Alexander William||Joyce, Michael||O'Kelly, James (Roscommon, N.|
|Boland, John||Kennedy, Patrick James||O'Malley, William|
|Brigg, John||Leamy, Edmund||O'Mara, James|
|Brown, George M. (Edinburgh)||Leigh, Sir Joseph||O'Shaughnessy, P. J.|
|Burke, E. Haviland-||Lough, Thomas||O'Shee, James John|
|Caldwell, James||Lundon, W.||Power, Patrick Joseph|
|Campbell, John (Armagh, S.)||MacDonnell, Dr. Mark A.||Reddy, M.|
|Carew, James Laurence||MacNeill, John Gordon Swift||Redmond, John E.(Waterford)|
|Causton, Richard Knight||M'Dermott, Patrick||Redmond, William (Clare)|
|Clancy, John Joseph||M'Killop, W. (Sligo, North)||Rigg, Richard|
|Cogan, Denis J.||Minch, Matthew||Roberts, John H. (Denbighs.)|
|Condon, Thomas Joseph||Mooney, John J.||Roche, John|
|Crean, Eugene||Morton, E. J. C.)Devonport)||Russell, T. W.|
|Cullinan, J.||Murnaghan, George||Schwann, Charles E.|
|Delany, William||Murphy, John||Sheehan, Daniel Daniel|
|Dillon, John||Nannetti, Joseph P.||Spencer, Rt. Hn. CR (Northants|
|Doogan, P. C.||Newnes, Sir George||Sullivan, Donal|
|Duffy, William J.||Nolan, Col. John P.(Galway, N.)||Thomas, F. Freeman-(Hastings)|
|Evans, Samuel T. (Glamorgan)||Nolan, Joseph (Louth, South)||Thomson, F. W. (Yorks, W. R.)|
|Ffrench, Peter||O'Brien, Kendal (Tipperary, Mid||Tully, Jasper|
|Flavin, Michael Joseph||O'Brien, Patrick (Kilkenny)||White, Patrick (Meath,. North)|
|Flynn, James Christopher||O'Brien, J. P. (Tipperary, N.)||Young, Samuel|
|Guhooly, James||O'Connor, James (Wicklow, W.)||TELLERS FOR THE NOES—Sir Thomas Esmonds and Captain Donelan.|
|Gladstone, Rt. Hn. Herbert John||O'Connor, T. P. (Liverpool)|
|Hammond, John||O'Donnell, John (Mayo, S.)|
§ Question put accordingly.354
§ The Committee divided:—Ayes, 174; Noes, 75. (Division List No. 332.)355
|Acland-Hood, Capt. Sir Alex. F.||Bill, Charles||Corbett, A. C. (Glasgow)|
|Agg-Gardner, James Tynte||Brodrick, Rt. Hon. St. John||Cox, Irwin Edward B.|
|Agnew, Sir Andrew Noel||Bull, William James||Cranborne, Viscount|
|Allhusen, Augustus Henry E.||Bullard, Sir Harry||Cripps, Charles Alfred|
|Anson, Sir William Reynell||Burdett-Coutts, W.||Dalkeith, Earl of|
|Arkwright, John Stanhope||Butcher, John George||Digby, John K. D. Wingfield-|
|Arnold-Forster, Hugh O.||Cautley, Henry Strother||Dimsdale, Sir Joseph C.|
|Atkinson, Rt. Hon. John||Cavendish, R. F. (N. Lancs.)||Disraeli, Coningsby Ralph|
|Bain, Col. James Robert||Cavendish, V. C. W. (Derbysh.||Dixon-Hartland, Sir F. Dixon|
|Balfour, Rt. Hon. A. J. (Manch'r||Cayzer, Sir Charles William||Douglas, Rt. Hon. A. Akers-|
|Balfour, Capt. C. B. (Hornsey||Cecil, Evelyn (Aston Manor)||Doxford, Sir William Theodore|
|Balfour, Rt. Hon. G. W. (Leeds||Chamberlain, Rt. Hon. J. (Birm.||Durning-Lawrence, Sir Edwin|
|Banbury, Frederick George||Chamberlain, J. A. (Worc'r)||Egerton, Hon. A. de Tatton|
|Barry, Sir Francis T. (Windsor)||Chapman, Edward||Elliot, Hon. A. Ralph Douglas|
|Bathurst, Hon. Allen Benjamin||Charrington, Spencer||Fellowes, Hon. Ailwyn Edward|
|Beach, Rt. Hn. Sir M.H. (Bristol||Churchill, Winston Spencer||Fergusson, Rt. Hn. Sir J. (Manc'r|
|Bentinck, Lord Henry C.||Cochrane, Hon. Thos. H. A. E.||Fielden, Edward Brocklehurst|
|Bhownaggree, Sir M. M.||Collings, Rt. Hon. Jesse||Finch, George H.|
|Bignold, Arthur||Compton, Lord Alwyne||Finlay, Sir Robert Bannatyne|
|Bigwood, James||Cook, Sir Frederick Lucas||Fisher, William Hayes|
|FitzGerald, Sir Robert Penrose-||Knowles, Lees||Rentoul, James Alexander|
|Fitzroy, Hon. Edw. Algernon||Lambton, Hon. Frederick Wm.||Ridley, S. F. (Bethnal Green)|
|Flower, Ernest||Lawrence, Wm. F. (Liverpool)||Ritchie, Rt. Hn. C. Thomson|
|Forster, Henry William||Lawson, John Grant||Round, James|
|Foster, Philip S. (Warwick, SW)||Lecky, Rt. Hon. Wm. Edw. H.||Russell, T. W.|
|Galloway, William Johnson||Legge, Col. Hon. Heneage||Rutherford, John|
|Gibbs, Hn. A. G. H. (Cy. of Lond.||Leigh-Bennett, Henry Currie||Sackville, Col. S. G. Stopford-|
|Gordon, Hn. J. E. (Elgin & Nairn)||Long, Col. C. W. (Evesham)||Sassoon, Sir Edward Albert|
|Gordon, J. (Londonderry, S.)||Long, Rt. Hn. W. (Bristol, S.||Scott, Sir S. (Marylebone, W.)|
|Gordon, Maj Evans-(T'rH'ml'ts||Lonsdale, John Brownlee||Seton-Karr, Henry|
|Gorst, Rt. Hon. Sir John Eldon||Lowther, C. (Cumb., Eskdale)||Sharpe, William Edward T.|
|Goschen, Hon. Geo. Joachim||Lucas, Col. Francis (Lowestoft)||Smith, James P. (Lanarks.)|
|Goulding, Edward Alfred||Lucas, Reginald J. (Portsmouth||Smith, Hon. W. F. D. (Strand)|
|Graham, Henry Robert||Lyttelton, Hon Alfred||Spear, John Ward|
|Gray, Ernest (West Ham)||M'Calmont, Col. HLB. (Cambs)||Stanley, Hon. A. (Ormskirk)|
|Greene, Sir E. W. (B'rySEdm'nds||Majendie, James A. H.||Stanley, Lord (Lancs.)|
|Greene, Henry D. (Shrewsbury||Malcolm, Ian||Stewart Sir M. J. M'Taggart|
|Grenfell, Wm. Henry||Manners, Lord Cecil||Strutt, Hon. Charles Hedley|
|Gretton, John||Maple, Sir John Blundell||Sturt, Hon. Humphry Napier|
|Greville, Hon. Ronald||Martin, Richard Biddulph||Talbot, Lord E. (Chichester)|
|Hambro, Charles Eric||Massey-Mainwaring, Hn. W. F.||Thornton, Percy M.|
|Hamilton, Rt. Hn. Lord G.(Midd.||Maxwell, W. J. H. (Dumfriessh.||Tollemache, Henry James|
|Hamilton, Marq. of (L'nd'd'y)||Morgan, Hn. F. (Monm'thsh.)||Tufnell, Lieut.-Col. Edward|
|Hanbury, Rt. Hon. Robt. Wm.||Morris, Hon. Martin Henry F.||Valentia, Viscount|
|Hardy, L. (Kent, Ashford)||Mowbray, Sir Robert Gray C.||Vincent, Sir Edgar (Exeter)|
|Haslam, Sir Alfred S.||Murray, Rt. Hon. A. G. (Bute)||Welby, Sir Chas. G. E. (Notts.)|
|Hay, Hon. Claude George||Murray, Charles J. (Coventry)||Wentworth, Bruce C. Vernon-|
|Heath, Arthur Howard (Hanley||Murray, Col. Wyndham (Bath||Whiteley, H. (Ashton.u.-Lyne|
|Heath, James (Staffords, N. W.)||Nicol, Donald Ninian||Whitmore, Charles Algernon|
|Hermon-Hodge, Robt. Trotter||Orr-Ewing, Charles Lindsay||Wilson, A. Stanley (York, E. R.|
|Hope, J. F. (Sheffi'ld, Brightside||Palmer, Walter (Salisbury)||Wilson, John (Glasgow)|
|Hornby, Sir Wm. Henry||Pease, Herbt. P. (Darlington)||Wilson, JW (Worcestersh., N.)|
|Hoult, Joseph||Penn, John||Wilson-Todd, Wm. H. (Yorks.)|
|Hudson, George Bickersteth||Platt-Higgins, Frederick||Wolff, Gustav Wilhelm|
|Hutton, John (Yorks. N. R.)||Pretyman, Ernest George||Wyndham, Rt. Hon. George|
|Johnstone, Heywood (Sussex)||Purvis, Robert||Younger, William|
|Kenyon, Hon. Geo. T. (Denbigh)||Pym, C. Guy||TELLERS FOR THE AYES—Sir William Walrond and Mr. Anstruther.|
|Kenyon-Slaney, Col. W. (Salop)||Randles, John S.|
|Keswick, William||Reid, James (Greenock)|
|Abraham, William (Cork, N. E.||Hayden, John Patrick||O'Connor, T. P. (Liverpool)|
|Ambrose, Robert||Hayne, Rt. Hon. Chas. Seale-||O'Donnell, John (Mayo. S.)|
|Barry, E. (Cork, S.)||Jones, William (Carnarvonsh.)||O'Donnell, T. (Kerry, W.)|
|Black, Alexander William||Joyce, Michael||O'Dowd, John|
|Boland, John||Kennedy, Patrick James||O'Kelly, Conor (Mayo, N.)|
|Brigg, John||Leamy, Edmund||O'Kelly, J. (Roscommon, N.)|
|Brown, G. M. (Edinburgh)||Leigh, Sir Joseph||O'Malley, William|
|Burke, E. Haviland-||Lough, Thomas||O'Mara, James|
|Caldwell, James||Lundon, W.||O'Shaughnessy, P. J.|
|Campbell, John (Armagh, S.)||MacDonnell, Dr. Mark A.||O'Shee, James John|
|Carew, James Laurence||MacNeill, John Gordon Swift||Power, Patrick Joseph|
|Clancy, John Joseph||M'Dermott, Patrick||Reddy, M.|
|Cogan, Denis J.||M'Killop, W. (Sligo, North)||Redmond, J. E. (Waterford)|
|Condon, Thomas Joseph||Minch, Matthew||Redmond, William (Clare)|
|Crean, Eugene||Mooney, John J.||Rigg, Richard|
|Cullinan, J.||Morton, Edw. J. C. (Devonport)||Roberts, John H. (Denbighs.)|
|Delany, William||Murnaghan, George||Roche, John|
|Dillon, John||Murphy, John||Schwann, Charles E.|
|Doogan, P. C.||Nannetti, Joseph P.||Sheehan, Daniel Daniel|
|Duffy, William J.||Newnes, Sir George||Sullivan, Donal|
|Evans, S. T. (Glamorgan)||Nolan, Col. John P. (Galway, N.||Tully, Jasper|
|Ffrench, Peter||Nolan, Joseph (Louth, South)||White, Patrick (Meath, N.)|
|Flavin, Michael Joseph||O'Brien, Kendal (Tipp'r'ry, Mid||Young, Samuel|
|Flynn, James Christopher||O'Brien, Patrick (Kilkenny)||TELLERS FOR THE NOES—Sir Thomas Esmonde and Captain Donelan.|
|Gilhooly, James||O'Brien, P. J. (Tipperary, N.)|
|Hammond, John||O'Connor, Jas. (Wicklow, W.)|
§ And, it being after Midnight, the Chairman left the Chair to make his Report to the House.356
§ Resolution to be reported upon Monday next; Committee to sit again upon Monday next.
§ Adjourned at twenty-five minutes after Twelve of the clock, till Monday next.