§ MR. LONSDALE (Armagh, Mid.)
To ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland whether his attention has been called to the fact that, whereas the Education Estimates for England and Wales increased from £9,557,129 in 1900–1 to £13,593,646 in 1907–8, and the Education Estimates for Scotland increased from £1,333,221 to £2,022,554 in the same period, the Education Estimates for Ireland advanced only from £1,387,503 to £1,408,360; whether the percentage of increase in the seven years was 43 in the case of England, 51 in the case of Scotland, and only 1.5 in the case of Ireland; and whether he will endeavour to secure for Ireland increased financial assistance for primary education in proportion to the needs of Irish children.
§ (Answered by Mr. Birrell.) I can only repeat the Answer which I have already given to similar Questions, namely, that a comparison between the Votes mentioned in the Question cannot justly be instituted. The Votes for England and Scotland include provision for secondary and technical education, while the Vote for Ireland refers to primary education alone, and indeed does not include the whole of the provision voted for that service. Secondary and technical education are otherwise provided for in Ireland. But, apart from comparisons, I may say that I will do everything in my power to obtain fuller recognition of the special claims of Ireland in respect of primary education. The hon. Member is probably aware that last week my right hon. friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer received an important deputation on the subject, and promised sympathetic consideration of the entire question.