§ SIR WILLIAM ANSON (Oxford University)
I beg to ask the President of the Board of Education whether the Board, when they decided to permit the local education authority of Halifax to cease to maintain the All Saints Church of England school, were aware that the failure to carry out the alterations required by the Board to be completed by the 31st March, 1906, was entirely due to change of purpose in respect of a purchase of a part of the premises, and consequent delay in approving the plans on the part of the local authority; that but for this delay the alterations would have 314 been effected within the required time; that plans had been approved and work was about to be commenced when the Education Bill of last Session was introduced; and whether, under these circumstances, the Board will adhere to the terms of their letter of 24th February, 1907, will allow the managers to proceed with alterations for which plans have been approved and tenders obtained, and will continue to treat the school as necessary.
§ MR. MCKENNA
The reason given in the hon. Baronet's Question is among those alleged by the managers, but I understand the accuracy of this contention is not admitted by the local authority. Objection was taken to the buildings in September, 1903, and the school has already been granted an extension of more than a year. In view of the condition of the premises I am unable to interfere with the decision at which the local authority have arrived.
§ SIR WILLIAM ANSON
Is there any dispute as to the accuracy of the statement made by the managers of the schools? Will the right hon. Gentleman inquire, so that a great injustice may not be done?
§ MR. MCKENNA
I have formed my own opinion as to the right and wrong of this controversy, and under no circumstances will I endeavour to coerce the local authority.