§ MR. WEDGWOOD (Newcastle-under-Lyme)
I beg to ask the President of the Board of Education whether he is aware that it was stated in a debate at a meeting of the London Education Committee on 31st October that in the East Lambeth Division there were in one year 39,505 cases of corporal punishment upon boys, 9,723 upon girls, and 6,069 on infants, and that in West Lambeth the numbers were 49,979, 7,623, and 5,567, respectively; whether this is at all typical of London schools; and whether he will make inquiries so far as possible into the extent to which this form of punishment obtains in the public elementary schools, and will communicate the results before the Committee stage of the Education Bill.
§ MR. MCKENNA
I have seen a newspaper report in which the figures, which my hon. friend quotes, are given, but I cannot say whether they are typical of London schools or not. The infliction of corporal punishment is subject to restrictions laid down in detailed regulations drawn up by the London County Council. Any specific complaint on the part of parents of alleged excessive punishment would, of course, be inquired into if brought before the Board, but complaints are in fact very infrequent, and I do not think any useful purpose would be served by instituting the inquiries suggested. I do not propose to deal with the matter in the Education Bill.
§ MR. LUPTON (Lincolnshire, Sleaford)
Is it not the case that in some educational areas corporal punishment is 344 entirely forbidden and with very good results?