HC Deb 07 February 1908 vol 183 c1228

To ask the Vice-President of the Department of Agriculture (Ireland), whether he is aware that the Monaghan Agricultural School was, from 1902 to 1907, held under an agreement with the Christian Brothers made with the Department, and containing clauses providing for undenominational treatment of the students, and that the school was successful and well attended; and will he explain why the Department has now abandoned control of the school and no longer preserves its undenominational character, and thereby gravely imperils its being made available by students of different religious opinions.

(Answered by Mr. T. W. Russell.) Monaghan School of Agriculture was conducted from 1902 to 1907 under an agreement between the Christian Brothers and the Department. The agreement, which was for a period of five years, terminated on 31st March, 1907. The school is at present carried on under a scheme administered by the County Monaghan Committee of Agriculture. It is open to pupils of all religious denominations. The pupils were admitted to the present session, as in previous years, on the results of an entrance examination held by the Department's Inspector. The Department have not abandoned control of the school. They exercise the same control with regard to it as they do in the case of other agricultural schemes administered through County Committee of Agriculture. The Department do not regard the school as having been conducted satisfactorily. The attendance of pupils has been moderate.