HC Deb 25 November 1912 vol 44 cc814-5
61 and 65. Mr. FREDERICK WHYTE

asked the Secretary to the Treasury (1) what steps his Department took to ascertain the opinion of the Scottish universities upon the question of the inclusive fee for certain courses of study before making the acceptance of the policy of the inclusive fee a condition of increased Grants from the Exchequer; and (2) whether his Department received the sanction of this House for the policy of imposing the inclusive fee upon the Scottish universities?


In communicating to the Scottish universities in July, 1910, the intention to ask Parliament to vote an additional Grant in 1910–11, the Treasury stated that they proposed to make increased Grants subject to conditions, one of which was the "institution of an inclusive fee of uniform amount throughout the universities for all the classes included in a particular form of study." The Scottish universities, after holding a conference, accepted in principle the condition of establishing an inclusive fee. The Grant has been voted in the usual way ever since 1910–11, and until quite recently, so far as I am aware, no objection has been raised in the House of Commons to the action of the Treasury.


Did the right hon. Gentleman take legal opinion as to the justification for the Treasury taking such action without a separate ordinance?


I should have notice of that question. It was done before my time.


On whose initiative did the Treasury proceed in making this entirely new demand upon the Scottish universities, infringing their statutory right of fixing these fees?


I think it was done two and a half years ago. If the hon. Gentleman will put down a question I will try to give him the information.