HC Deb 07 May 1901 vol 93 cc967-8
MR. WARR (Liverpool, Toxteth)

I beg to ask the First Lord of the Treasury whether his attention has been directed to the fact that the Liverpool School Board have given public notice that, having regard to the judgment in the Cockerton case, they intend in July next, in the absence of legislation in the meantime, to discontinue all their evening schools, to request all the day scholars now in standard VII. and upwards to withdraw, to discontinue manual instruction classes for boys and cookery and laundry classes for girls; whether he is aware that the discontinuance of the evening classes will affect 8,500 students; that 2,000 advanced scholars will be compelled to withdraw; that the discontinuance of cookery and laundry instruction will affect 8,526 girls, and the discontinuance of manual instruction 8,332 boys; and that, in all, 27,000 pupils and their teachers will be affected; and whether, under these circumstances, His Majesty's Government will find a solution of the difficulties which have arisen by immediately proposing legislation giving school boards or some other local educational authorities those powers which school boards have hitherto supposed that they possessed, so that the educational opportunities which have hitherto been enjoyed by the people may be restored.


I beg also to ask the First Lord of the Treasury whether he is aware that, in consequence of the Cockerton judgment, thirty instructors in manual work, cookery, and laundry work have received notices to terminate their engagements with the Liverpool School Board on 31st July, and will thereby be deprived of their means of living, while many thousands of children in board and voluntary schools in Liverpool will be deprived of instruction in these subjects; and whether the Government will take early steps to legalise the continuance of such instruction.


As far as I understand the matter, the Liverpool School Board have not correctly interpreted the results of the Cockerton judgment. In respect to the other parts of the question, I think my hon. friends had better wait until my right hon. friend has introduced the Education Bill. From that statement they will derive, I think, all the information they desire.