§ MR. CROOKS
I beg to ask the Secretary to the Board of Education whether his attention has been called to the objection felt by local education authorities to the rules laid down by the Board of Education that the minimum fee for scholars attending secondary schools under Part II of the Act of 1902 shall be £3 per annum, and that the number of free scholarships at such schools shall not exceed 25 per cent. of the total number of scholars; whether he has taken into consideration the effect of these regulations in debarring from the benefits of higher education a considerable number of the children of the industrial classes; and, if so, whether the Board of Education will, at an early date, respond to the wish of many education authorities that the minimum fee should be reduced, and the number of free scholarships tenable at secondary schools should be increased.
§ THE PARLIAMENTARY SECRETARY TO THE BOARD OF EDUCATION (Sir WILLIAM ANSON, Oxford University)
This matter is receiving the careful consideration of the Board. I will send the hon. Member a copy of a letter which has been despatched to the president of the Association of Education Committees on the subject. Briefly, the Board will not insist as a condition of grant upon the observance of any general rule as regards the amount of fee or the number of free places. Each case will be considered on its merits.