§ Motion made, and Question proposed,"That a Supplementary sum, not exceeding £9,250, be granted to His Majesty, to defray the Charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending on the 31st day of March, 1914, for Public Education in Scotland."
§ Sir HENRY CRAIK
It is one of the important things in connection with these Supplementary Estimates that they enable us, to a certain extent, to place our hands on the pulse of the educational machine, and to see what is the real increase in cost and by what it is caused. I am inclined to regard the matter raised by this Vote as one of very considerable importance, and I would have been glad if more of my colleagues from Scotland had thought it worth while to attend on this occasion. Other attractions apparently have drawn them from these benches, and I am left to call attention to this important Supplementary Vote. In order to enable the Committee to know what it really means I must go back to the Act of 1872. That Statute enables a certain Grant to be paid to school boards to supplement the rates when very high. The normal rate fixed by the Act of 1872 was 3d.—exactly the same rate as was fixed by Mr. Forster when he was indicating the probable result of the Act of 1870 in England. Not only was it indicated as the probable amount, but the Act of Parliament embodies in its Clauses that 3d. was to be considered the normal rate. If a rate of 3d. did not yield 7s. 6d. for every child in attendance, then the State was to come in and raise it to that amount. But as time went on this became utterly absurd. The 3d. rate was hardly ever exceeded by a very large amount in Scotland. It is a happy and fortunate parish that has not to pay a rate of more nearly Is. than 3d., and it was necessary for the State to come in and give assistance to those hardly 2062 pressed school boards. Now we see in the Supplementary Estimates how that is acting, and what are the necessities of those school boards. In 1897 the Clause in the Act of 1872 which provided for an addition by the State where a 3d. rate was not producing 7s. 6d. per child on the average attendance was made very much more liberal—so much so that for every 1d. increase over 3d. the State was to come in and pay 4d., so that a rate of 6d. entitled a school board to a Grant of 1s., and a rate of 9d. brought an additional Grant of 2s. That is, I admit, a very considerable addition, but how was it to be gained? The Committee must attend to that in order to ascertain the real significance of this Supplementary Estimate. It could only be gained by those school boards that were prepared to put their hands in their pockets to an enormous extent, and impose upon the ratepayers in the locality a rate of 2s. in the pound, or it might be 3s in the pound in order to get the State subsidy. Why is it, if that State subsidy from 1897 ascended by small and moderate amounts for fifteen, sixteen, or seventeen years, it has in recent years made an enormous jump? The Committee will remember that the increase is not merely £9,250, which you are asked to vote now, but is actually £19,250, because by some manipulation of sub-heads, which, no doubt, the Secretary for Scotland will explain, he has been able to save £10,000. What does that amount to? The total Vote was only £75,000. Last year it was £72,500, showing a normal increase of £2,000 or £3,000, Now you have an increase of £19,500–in other words, an increase of 25 per cent. of the total Vote.
In my experience a miscalculation so large is unprecedented. For twenty years I was responsible for the Scottish Education Vote, and no doubt I was sometimes mistaken, but to be mistaken to the extent of 25 per cent. is a very important matter. It shows a very alarming state of things, 2063 to the bottom of which we ought to get in the interest of Scotland. Is that enormous increase due to an increase in the average attendance at the schools? If they were bringing more scholars into the schools, and if this additional Grant was asked because there were more children to educate, and the school boards were obliged to incur more expense, then we might perhaps console ourselves, but the fact is—and it is a very alarming fact—that the average attendance in Scotland is falling off. The average number of children attending schools this year is some 7,000 or 8,000 less than last year. That itself is a point of very considerable importance. The expense has not been caused by any increase in the average attendance. What is it due to? It is due to this fact, and this fact alone, that rates in Scotland are mounting, not slowly or gradually, but by leaps and bounds. It is only because that for every additional penny on the rate there is a Grant of fourpence by the State. It is by reason of this enormous and abnormal increase that you are called upon to open the purse strings and to vote this 25 per cent. increase. Does not this show that the matter is of considerable interest to Scotland? The party who support the Secretary for Scotland will vote the money whatever representations we may make; but is it not a matter of interest to their constituents that hon. Members from Scotland should lay their heads together and see what is causing this enormous increase in the rates of Scotland. Is it anything in the right hon. Gentleman's administration? Is it anything that he has demanded of the school boards? Why are not hon. Members on the other side here to ask him for an explanation? The hon. Member for Kincardineshire (Captain Murray) and the hon. Member for Kircaldy Burghs (Sir H. Dalziel) are here, but I would like to see many more of them. Is that the measure of the interest taken by hon. Members on the other side in Scotch education?
§ The DEPUTY-CHAIRMAN
As the hon. Member has drawn attention to that point, I think he might pass from it.
§ Sir H. CRAIK
This additional aid-grant to the school board is, after all, a mere stop-gap. It is admitted that this growing evil of the burden of the rates and the necessity which is shown in so marked a form by this Supplementary Estimate is one which demands immediate attention.
§ The DEPUTY-CHAIRMAN
The hon. Member will forgive me, but I am the judge of that, and I am of opinion that the hon. Member is dealing with a question of policy.
§ Sir H. CRAIK
The practice of the Department has been to delay this help by the appointment of a Committee, and I want to know when it is to report. If the Committee had only given an explanation this abnormal increase would not have taken place. School boards have been led into abnormal expenditure by expectations held out sometimes, but nothing has been done, and therefore they have found themselves in the middle of the school year having planned an expenditure on a certain footing, grievously behind, and they have been obliged to go to the Scotch Education Department, and the right hon. Gentleman has to come here and ask us to meet this abnormal burden placed on the ratepayers by a Grant of 25 per cent, more than his advisers deemed it necessary to begin with. Shall we have an explanation of this? Is it owing to the fact that new burdens of education have been placed upon them? It is certainly not due to an increase of average attendance. Is it due to the fact that the right hon. Gentleman has forced them to build new schools, to restrict the number of classes, or to do something that they did not do before? At all events, this serious fact is before the people of Scotland.
The SECRETARY for SCOTLAND (Mr. McKinnon Wood)
Shall I be allowed to go into the policy of the Scotch Education Department in replying?
The DEPUTY CHAIRMAN
No. As I understand what the hon. Member is now doing is this: he is asking definite questions from the right hon. Gentleman who is responsible for this Vote. He is asking what is the cause of the increase. I think I might suggest that it would be very much more convenient for the purposes of the Committee that the explanation should be given as soon as possible.
§ 9. 0 P. M.
§ Sir H. CRAIK
May I point out that this could not be demanded unless the rates had increased to such an abnormal extent 2065 that you have to ask for a 25 per cent. increase in subsidies. Has this been caused by the action of the school boards themselves, or a diminution of the Grants of the Departments, or by requests made by the right hon. Gentleman which the school boards have been forced to carry out?
Mr. McKINNON WOOD
I will take your suggestion of replying at once to the hon. Gentleman who has spoken with a great deal of knowledge of this question. I thought it showed great courage that he should attempt to explain the extremely complicated question of the basis upon which this Grant is made, and I congratulate him on having been able to make a very complicated question, if not completely, at any rate fairly intelligible to the Committee. He spoke about the increase of the rates as alarming. I am not sure that I would agree with that I do not think that increased expenditure on education is an alarming thing for the country, but on the contrary. I would like to explain exactly what the position of the Scotch Education Department is in regard to this Vote. This is not a question of the expenditure of the Scottish Education Department. It is a question of a statutory Grant to which the school boards, on fulfilling certain conditions, are entitled, and over which the Department has no power whatever. I will not go over the explanation, as I should be out of order if I did, which was given by the hon. Member of the principles upon which the Grants are based. We are bound by them, and in the Supplementary Estimate we must presume them. The first question which I have to answer is: "Why has the Grant increased so much?" As the hon. Member has said, it is a very large percentage of increase. For some years past the number of school boards claiming this Grant has been fairly stationary. In 1909 the number was 244; in 1910 it was 243; in 1911 it was 242; and the next year it was actually down to 217. The Scottish Education Department reckoned upon some increase. They made an estimate for 250, and the number has amounted to 290. Two hundred and ninety school boards have been able to make good their claims to this Grant, and the average amount demanded by the school boards has also slightly increased. We estimated for £300 per school board on an average, and the amount turned out to be £325. That is the explanation of the increase, which is 2066 a considerable increase. The hon. Member asked whether it was due to the Department having insisted on a large and general reduction of the number of children in the classes. The answer to that is "No." The Education Department think it desirable that there should be a reduction in the number of children in the classes, but we recognise that the burden on the rates and the burden on voluntary schools in Scotland must be taken into accounts, and until we get larger Grants from the National Exchequer, we think it our duty to consider whether we should press that provision, which, from the educational point of view, is very desirable. So that at the present moment—I will not make any promises for the future—we have not insisted on that general reduction of classes which I may say, from the educational point of view, we think is desirable. That is not to be thought of. It rather follows that the other point of the hon. Member, as to the pressure put by the Department to build new schools, is not the cause of the increase, nor does the question of the diminution of other Grants affect this matter very much. The fact of the matter is that undoubtedly recent legislation has put burdens on the school boards. There is the question of medical expenses and medical treatment, although the Treasury gives a Grant in proportion to those expenses; there is also, I must admit, for the future—it does not affect this Vote, and I certainly will not dwell on the question—the question of dealing with medical attendance. These are matters calling for the attention of the school boards, and which I have no doubt the State will meet in the near future. I think we are all agreed that in regard to the question of national education the highest proportion of the cost should be provided from national funds. But besides that, I think it is a good thing that we should find the school boards in Scotland, although they feel the pressure to be pretty heavy, are still prepared to spend money out of the rates to maintain the national character in regard to education. There is no doubt that the expenditure has been heavy, and that, of course, is the reason why the Grant from the State, which bears relation to it, must be larger.
MARQUESS Of TULLIBARDINE
May I ask if the school boards would be able to claim the increase if the rates had not gone up?
Mr. McKINNON WOOD
Of course, obviously, it would not be so large if the rates had not gone up; but the proportion of Grant depends on what a certain rate in the pround produces. I must point out to the Committee that this is a matter over which the Scottish Education Department have really no control. It is a statutory right on the part of the school boards. If they can make good their claim, the Grant has to be given to them. I am sure the Committee would not desire that we should withhold anything by way of Grant from the School Boards of Scotland, who are doing a great national work and fulfil conditions under which they establish a right to a Grant which Parliament has given them. This is purely an automatic matter, and I think I have answered all the questions.
§ Mr. ROBERT HARCOURT
I listened with great interest to the hon. Gentleman who opened the Debate, and passed some strictures on Scottish colleagues. I myself was endeavouring to address the Committee at that time, but I think the Debate which has occurred has answered the points that I desired to raise. I, however, wish to emphasise the points raised by the hon. Gentleman opposite as to the immense burden which is coming upon the rates in the smaller towns of Scotland, where the penny rate only produces a moderate amount. Various new educational questions come up—the question of reducing the size of the classes and the question of paying Grants by instalments, not to speak of controversial local matters affecting Forfarshire, Galashields, and the question of accounts, which, I think, might cause many of the boards to abolish free places, would have a distastrous effect on secondary education. One has very often to criticise the Department, but on this occasieon I desire to return grateful thanks to its officers, who have met this point, very important to my Constituents and the constituents of some other Members, in a very handsome way. I know it states at the bottom of the page in the Estimates that the increase has been due to a larger number of claims made by school boards this year for the first time. I am glad to see that the school boards are making those claims, and that the Department are making an increased Grant.
§ Sir H. CRAIK
The school boards can only claim on the ground that their rates are enormously increased.
§ Mr. R. HARCOURT
I really only rose to say that, in my opinion, as a matter of personal experience, that whether the rate in small towns is—
§ Sir P. MAGNUS
Though I may not be familiar with the peculiar conditions attaching to Grants in Scotland, I must say that the explanation given to the Committee by the right hon. Gentleman is not altogther satisfactory. I am not quite certain that I wholly understood the full explanation which has been given by my hon. Friend the Member for the University, but the position which is before us as a Committee dealing with Supplementary Estimates is, of course, clearly set forth in the Paper before us. The increase is £19,250 upon the original Estimate, and of that amount £10,000 will be met by savings under other heads. We, as members of the Committee, are not concerned with Scottish policy as regards education, but we are anxious to know for what purpose this increased expenditure is required, and for what purpose it has become necessary to ask this Committee to vote it. I gather that there has been no increase of attendance of children at the schools of Scotland during the past year, and I also gather that there has been a large increase in the number of school boards. But what I want to know is in what respect the education in Scotland has been improved by this largely increased Grant. We arc also desirous of knowing whether the number of children in attendance at school has been increased in a manner to justify this extra Grant. I have not been able to gather from the speech of the right hon. Gentleman that he can point to any reason whatever for this increase, except the fact that an additional burden in the way of medical expenses and attendance has been thrown upon the school boards of Scotland, and that a large part of the expenditure is defrayed by the State. We are told that the rates have been increased, and that as the rates increase automatically the Grants from the State also increase.
§ Sir P. MAGNUS
May I point out that this increased Grant of £19,000 and more 2069 is due to the fact that the rates have increased? How can we possibly ascertain the reason of the increase of over £19,000 unless we ask why the rates have increased?
§ The DEPUTY-CHAIRMAN
The Grant rises automatically with the increase of the rates, and that point has already been explained; but if I allowed the discussion to proceed as widely as the hon. Gentleman would make it, then I should have to permit a Debate on the whole question of the administration of the school boards in Scotland.
§ Sir P. MAGNUS
I hope, Sir, you will allow me to explain what I mean. We are asked to grant a net increased sum of £19,250, and we are told that that increase is an automatic result of the increase in rates. Those rates cannot have increased except for some educational purpose, and I cannot help thinking we are here to no purpose if we are unable to obtain an explanation as to that purpose. We are here to criticise the Estimates, and it is only possible to do so if we can refer to these matters.
§ The DEPUTY-CHAIRMAN
The procedure on Supplementary Estimates is laid down by the Standing Orders of the House, and I am only asking the hon. Member to follow those Standing Orders.
§ Sir H. CRAIK
I quite understand your ruling, that we cannot discuss the general policy, but can we not discuss the real change of a most momentous kind that has occurred this year, and which has required the Department to come upon this occasion for a special Grant? If we cannot do that we might as well close the Committee and go home.
§ Mr. R. HARCOURT
In support of that, may I say I presume we have been discussing the requirements of the Department within the limits of the Estimate?
§ Sir P. MAGNUS
I will avoid the use of the word "rates." I would like to ask the Secretary for Scotland whether there has been any increase in the efficiency of the schools. He has told us that the classes have not been reduced in size. I should have been very glad to learn that 2070 they had. I would like to know, are there any subjects of instruction which have given rise to this increase, and, also, whether there has been any increase in the salaries of the teachers which would be a reason for this increase. All those are very important matters from the educational point of view, and, as far as I have been able to gather from the speech of the right hon. Gentleman, we have had no reason assigned why we should be asked to vote an additional sum of £19,250 towards educational Estimates in Scotland.
§ Colonel GREIG
I do not know whether I am in order in indicating some information which I have received myself, and which I think throws a little light upon this demand for an extra payment. From a certain county council, or county authority which deals with education in Scotland, it is pointed out to me that the rate is limited under a Section of the Scottish Education Act. Thus, in 1909 they got per scholar 3s. 6d., and in 1910–11 3s. 1d., and in 1911–12 3s., in 1912–13 1s. 6d. per head, and in 1913–14 6d. That showed a diminishing rate per head, and the reason of that was that the prior charges fixed on the allocated sum had been increasing in the meantime. The actual objects to which they have to apply the fund, and to which this fund goes—bursaries, medical inspection, specialist teachers, and a good deal of expenditure in general has increased. That is a common experience with all the educational authorities in Scotland well-known to all Scottish Members, and I dare say if the hon. Member who has just spoken would apply to my hon. Friend the Member for the University of Glasgow (Sir H. Craik) he will tell him that we all agree that something ought to be done, and that this is a very proper expenditure in order to help an educational purpose.
§ Mr. ORMSBY-GORE
I beg to move, that the Vote be reduced by £250.
This Supplementary Estimate may be proper or improper. What I desire to complain of is the way in which it is presented in the White Paper. We are told by the Secretary for Scotland that this increase of £19,250 is purely automatic, and that we have no control over it, and yet we find in a footnote that £10,000 will be met by savings under other sub-heads of the Vote. If that £19,250 is governed, not by the Committee but by Statute, at any rate the £10,000 is controlled by the Committee. The right hon. Gentleman 2071 has given us a wholly inadequate explanation as to this increase. These Supplementary Estimates are the only opportunity we have for criticising the amount of a Vote. We consider policy upon the general Estimate, and we consider the amount on the Supplementary Estimate. I am very suspicious of this round figure of £10,000 on the Estimate without any explanation. We are not told of the sub-heads, and it is not a right way to present such an Estimate. Before we vote £9,250 of the taxpayers' money—not only Scotsmen's money, but the money of Englishmen, Irishmen, and Welshmen—to pay for this extra special Grant for Scotland, which we cannot get in Wales, where we deserve it just as much, I think we are entitled to an answer giving particulars as to what the savings have been effected on, and if he was able to save such a large amount, why he should not have saved £11,000 or £12,000. In order to get an explanation, I move the reduction.
§ Sir F. BANBURY
I remember that Lord Melbourne once said to his Cabinet, "It does not matter what we say, as long as we all say the same thing." We have had two defenders of this Vote, and they have both said different things. One is the right hon. Gentleman in charge of the Vote, and the other is the hon. and gallant Gentleman opposite (Colonel Greig)—I do not know whether he is a candidate for the Scottish Office in the event of the right hon. Gentleman being sent to the House of Lords—who has given us an absolutely different and contradictory explanation to that of the right hon. Gentleman. His explanation practically was, "Education is a very good thing; Scotland is a very nice place, and if the people there are in a hole why should we not help them over the stile by granting this Supplementary Vote?" The explanation of the right hon. Gentleman is quite different. He says that the increase is owing to recent legislation, such as the medical examination of children, and some other Act. We are asked for another £19,000. That is a very large addition to an original Estimate of £75,000. When I was sitting on the other side of the House, over and over again I heard hon. and right hon. Gentlemen opposite denouncing in impassioned language, which I wish I could command, incorrect budgeting. They said that nothing was worse; there was no greater fault that 2072 a Department could commit than that of making incorrect Estimates. But here the right hon. Gentleman, who originally wanted £75,000, now wants £94,000, and the only reason he has given is that it is owing to recent legislation.
§ Sir F. BANBURY
I took the words down. It is the only note I have. I cannot possibly conceive that I was mistaken over such a plain statement. If the right hon. Gentleman can show that I am in error I will accept his explanation, but I appeal to my hon. Friends whether that was not the explanation which he gave. Did not the right hon. Gentleman know what the legislation was when he framed his Estimates? Why did he not take into account the recent legislation which would affect the Estimates to such a great extent? The footnote says that the increase is due to the number of claims which have been made by school boards this year for the first time. According to the footnote, it was due to something which presumably the Department could not foresee. Therefore, the right hon. Gentleman's explanation is absurd, because the effect of recent legislation was something which the Department could have foreseen. I wish to enter a protest against what we have had to do the whole of this evening—that is, to drag out explanations from right hon. Gentlemen opposite, as if we had got them in a chair and were pulling out teeth. They begin by making statements which are absolutely incomprehensible to any ordinary Member; then they shelter themselves behind the narrow rules of order under which we are suffering. Then, if we have been able by some fortunate chance to get a really good hold of the tooth, we begin to get some explanation. It would be much better, in their own interests, if there are to be Supplementary Estimates—which are wrong in themselves, as hon. Members opposite have said over and over again—if Ministers would put footnotes which ordinary Members can understand, and then, if through lack of ability we are unable to understand the footnotes, they would give reasonable explanations. I shall have pleasure in voting for the proposed reduction, not because I desire to hamper Scottish education, or to prevent proper money being spent in Scotland, but as a protest against the endeavours of the Government during the last few days to 2073 conceal from the House of Commons the real object for which they are asking us to vote money.
Mr. McKINNON WOOD
When the hon. Baronet was speaking I was particularly reminded of the judge who assured a witness that he must have said something because he had got it on his notes. The hon. Baronet says that I must have said something, because that is the only thing he has got on his notes.
Mr. McKINNON WOOD
I must admit that I have never seen the hon. Baronet asleep. What I did say was something quite different. The hon. Member for Glasgow University had put several points to me, and I was answering those points with my usual candour. I did not say that the whole of this increase was due to recent legislation. As a matter of fact, I could not say that any of the increase for last year was due to that cause, because there was no legislation that occurred immediately before last year which has seriously increased the expenditure. The hon. Member for Glasgow University asked why there was this increase, and made a whole series of suggestions—was it due to this or that or the other thing; was it due to smaller classes; was it due to the building of new schools; was it due to recent legislation; was it due to new exactions by the Department. I answered those questions seriatum.I said that it was not caused by this, and I admitted that to some extent it was due to something else. That is a very different thing from saying that the whole of the increase is due to recent legislation. As a matter of fact it is due to two things. As the hon. Member for Glasgow University truly says, it is due to the fact that expenditure on education is steadily increasing. I should have thought that the hon. Member for London University (Sir P. Magnus) would have considered that not a misfortune, but rather a good thing.
Mr. McKINNON WOOD
I believe he does think it a good thing, but then he need not have addressed us in such lugubrious accents. This increase is not due to recent legislation alone. I admit, of course, that if you impose duties of medical inspection and medical treatment, even 2074 though you provide a considerable propertion of the cost out of Government Grants, you must add to the cost of education. That is common ground amongst us all. I think one criticism which is fair and obvious in this Estimate is, "Why is there such a jump this year, why did it go on comparatively steadily in a number of school boards for a number of years past, and suddenly jump fifty in a year?" That is not a matter which I can explain better than by stating the fact that a number of school boards that never made a claim before have made a claim this year. These school boards have not suddenly increased their expenditure so as to make themselves entitled to the Grant this year. They have not done it suddenly like that. For some reason or another they did not make a claim. No doubt some of them might have made a claim before if they had looked into the matter. There was no discrepancy whatever between the explanation of my hon. Friend behind me and myself. The hon. Baronet thought so because I do not think anyone can understand educational finance unless it is a subject to which he has given special attention.
I am bound to say that even if he has, given a great deal of attention to it, it is an extremely difficult thing to explain, or to understand an explanation of. The bases of the Grant in education are extremely complicated. They often proceed on no principle at all, except for the purpose of giving one class of area a little more, and another class a little less. If the hon. Member had understood Scottish education, he would see that there is no difficulty at all. The hon. Member for London University asked a question as to whether teachers' salaries have increased, and whether there has been a general improvement in efficiency. Yes, I believe there has been. There is a general improvement in efficiency steadily going on. The old Scottish interest in education is not by any means dead. There has been, of course, some improvement in teachers' salaries, but nothing that would account for this. The hon. Baronet will understand that this increase of rates is made up of many elements, not one element alone. There is this matter in connection with the teachers which is important: When the Scottish Education Fund was created, amongst other objects is was to provide money for a proper superannuation scheme for the teachers. That scheme was not complete when the 2075 fund was first distributed, and the school boards obtained the benefit from that fund without having to bear the burden of superannuation for the first year or two. It was before my time, but I understand that one reason was that the actuarial calculation took longer than had been anticipated, and the scheme was not complete. Now they are having to pay for superannuation, and naturally more in the first few years, though the amount will subsequently diminish. For the present it does increase the Grant they are receiving from the fund. I would not have gone into that question had not the charge of inconsistency been raised. The hon. Member for Denbigh asked a very natural question, namely, what the saving of £10,000 was derived from—under what sub-head is was to be found. It deals with Grants in respect to capital expenditure and Grants for institutions for the training of teachers. This Grant is paid in instalments as the work proceeds. It happens that during the current year the new training college buildings which are to be erected by the provincial committees for the training of teachers have not progressed as rapidly as anticipated, and consequently the amounts of the Grants which we shall be called upon to pay this year is less than the Estimate. I think that meets that point. May I point out to the hon. Member who moved the reduction of the Vote that, after all, this is a question in which Parliament has determined that this Grant shall be made, and that the school boards have an indefeasible right to it. Perhaps, therefore, he will not persist in his Motion.
§ Mr. RAWLINSON
I have nothing to complain of in the courtesy of the right hon. Gentleman in attempting to answer the questions put to him, but I have a great deal to complain of at the attitude which he adopts as regards the position of this Committee in relation to Supplementary Estimates. He suggests that because Parliament has made this Grant that therefore we should pass it automatically, and he really—I am sorry to say—had the audacity to state that there was considerable difficulty m Educational Estimates, and that Grants were made without any sort of reasonable basis. He suggested that people who had not gone into them very fully could not understand them at all. I have devoted myself very fully to educational subjects—[An HON. MEMBER: "These are Scottish."]—also to the law. 2076 My experience is that when counsel cannot explain to a lay client the reason of a point of law which he is going to take into court for him, and says, "Leave it to me; it will be all right," that nine times out of ten the lawyer does not very clearly understand the law.
Mr. McKINNON WOOD
May I say that, as a matter of fact, the bases of these Grants were explained before the hon. and learned Gentleman came in, and very efficiently explained, by the hon. Member for Glasgow University, who was at one time a permanent head of the Department.
§ Mr. RAWLINSON
I was here and. heard my hon. Friend speak. I was only called out of the House for a few minutes I say that the hon. Member for Glasgow University did not explain, for, of course, he did not know the reason why we are asked to vote this £19,000. That is a duty which devolves upon the Government. It is not taken away from them by anything that the hon. Member for Glasgow University says. Let us come to one point. We as Members have a duty and a responsibility here, quite apart from any Act of Parliament. We have got to vote here £19,000. [HON. MEMBERS:"£9,000."] There is no difficulty about the matter—£19,000. Before hon. Members opposite go into the Division Lobby let them find out what they are voting for. Meanwhile let them take it from me that it is a Vote for 19,000 sovereigns. Does any fair-minded man on either side of the House suggest that any sort of a reason has been given by the Government why we should pass this Vote? I have listened attentively and honestly, and I have never heard any sort of reason. An hon. Member on the back benches made a gallant attempt, and a very fair attempt, to give us an explanation. "It was quite simple," he said. "There was increased expenditure," he continued, as he turned over certain pages of the Estimate, and he told us what the increase was in, and that because of that expenditure therefore we wanted £19,000–to help the Government over the stile, as my hon. Friend below with his happy analogies, said. If this increase occurred, as suggested by that hon. Member, why did not the Government foresee it? How did it come to make an Estimate which is £19,000 wrong? Not one word has been said by the right hon. Gentleman in explanation of that. He suggested that 2077 recent legislation which could not be anticipated was responsible for the increase. He has withdrawn that, and I do not wish to press it. We are entitled to two things on these Supplementary Estimates. First, why there should be these additional sums; and, secondly, why, if that is a good reason for a Supplementary Estimate being made, it was not foreseen by the person who drew up the Estimate a year ago? I think the explanation of the right hon Gentleman is unsatisfactory in the extreme. He might at least have given the exact figures and found out what this £19,000 was for. While thanking the right hon. Gentleman for his courtesy for the way in which he answered, I do submit that if we are to do our duty, we ought to vote for this reduction, for I respectfully suggest it is playing with the Committee of the House of Commons to give no sort of reason as to why this Supplementary Estimate is asked for.
§ Mr. AINSWORTH
I would like to reply to what has been said by the hon. and learned Member. He objects to this £19,000, which is to go for the benefit of education in Scotland.
§ Mr. RAWLINSON
Neither I, nor my hon. Friend the Member for London University has the slightest objection to money being voted for education, but we want to know why it is necessary to have this Vote and why they did not foresee it?
§ Mr. AINSWORTH
That is just the reason I am going to explain to the hon. and learned Gentleman what the cause was. As the representative of a very important centre of education, I should have thought he would have had a little sympathy with the voting of money to the poor in many parts of Scotland where, I am thankful to say, they have one advantage, and that is that everyone has access to the university. If the hon. Gentleman wants to know why the educational system is so marvellously good I will tell him that since the days of John Knox we have had a magnificent system of education in Scotland. The hon. and learned Gentleman wants an explanation. If he objects to this Vote in favour of education in Scotland, and if he wants to know before voting for it why it is necessary, I will tell him In Scotland we have the advantage which, I am sorry to say this country has not now got, but once had, of school boards for every parish. We have the great advantage, also, that parents take the greatest in- 2078 terest in the education of their children, and in scattered Highland parishes you will find special school boards set up to meet the needs of the children.
§ Mr. AINSWORTH
I was only trying to explain why this money is granted. I do not want to say more upon that subject, but the hon. and learned Gentleman wants to know why it is wanted. It is wanted because it is required by the school boards of Scotland. That money is wanted, as every sovereign that goes to Scotland is wanted, and the hon. Gentleman may feel quite sure that it will be well spent. It will enable a great many children to complete their education, and to pass on to the university, where they will become loyal subjects of the King. In trying to comply with the desire of the hon. Member for Cambridge, I am sorry, Mr. Maclean, I transgressed your ruling. I only hope the hon. and learned Member will come to Scotland some day, and he will be able to see what a national system of education really means, and then he never again will vote against money for it.
Mr. J. HOPE
If it were in order to do so I should like to break out into lyrical praises of the Scottish education system, not only on the ground of its excellence, but on the ground of its recognition of definite dogmatic teaching. I should like to bear my testimony to the unruffled placidity with which the Secretary for Scotland bore himself, and which afforded a very happy contrast to that of the Chief Secretary for Ireland in the last Debate. I want to ask the Secretary for Scotland under what Act, or Acts, this Grant arises. I know he cannot carry all these things in his head at the moment. I gather that there was an Act passed in 1897 for England, known as the Voluntary Schools Act, and in the same year there was an Act passed giving a certain Grant to the English school boards. I admit that there was an equivalent Act for Scotland at about the same time. In the year 1908 there was a larger and more comprehensive Act—I remember it well, because I was returned to Parliament after a short compulsory holiday, and the first work allotted to me was to serve as an additional member of the Scottish Committee. After coming back in such elation, it was an extremely valuable experience, and I think all these financial matters were dealt with under 2079 that Act. I want to know whether it is under the Act of 1897 or the later Act of 1908 that we are responsible for this increase. Under this Act, there were very large sums set apart for this very purpose of relieving the poor. I refer to Section 16, Sub-section (f), which provided for additional expenditure and dealt with the balances that would remain and their application to the Education Fund under Section 17, and I confess I should have thought, having regard to the large sums voted then, that an extra Grant of this kind would be needless. Section 17 provides that where the valuation of the school board district is very low and the expenses high, certain sums may be applied from the funds in relief of rates, so as to give greater aid in these districts where the burden of expenditure for education expenses is excessive, and that being so, I ask how far these funds have gone in reducing the burden on the rates and adding to the burden of the taxpayer? Whether the Act of 1908 has acted in any way in mitigation, or whether the whole has been swallowed up by this
|Division No. 28.]||AYES.||[9.57 P.m.|
|Ashley, Wilfrid W.||Gibbs, G. A.||Peel, Lieut.-Colonel R. F.|
|Baird, John Lawrence||Glazebrook, Captain Philip K.||Perkins, Walter F.|
|Baldwin, Stanley||Goldsmith, Frank||Pollock, Ernest Murray|
|Barlow, Montague (Sallord, South)||Gordon, John (Londonderry, South)||Pretyman, Ernest George|
|Barnston, Harry||Goulding, Edward Alfred||Pryce-Jones, Colonel E.|
|Bathurst, Hon. A. B. (Glouc., E.)||Grant, J. A.||Ratcliff, R. F.|
|Bathurst, Charles (Wilts, Wilton)||Greene, Walter Raymond||Rawlinson, John Frederick Peel|
|Benn, Arthur Shirley (Plymouth)||Guinness, Hon. Rupert (Essex, S.E.)||Rawson, Colonel R. H.|
|Bird, Alfred||Guinness, Hon. W.E. (Bury S.Edmunds)||Roberts, S. (Sheffield, Ecclesall)|
|Blair, Reginald||Gwynne, R. S. (Sussex, Eastbourne)||Royds, Edmund|
|Boles, Lieut.-Colonel Dennis Fortescue||Hall, D. B. (Isle of Wight)||Rutherford, Watson (L'pool, W. Derby)|
|Boscawen, Sir Arthur S. T. Griffith.||Hamilton, C. G. C. (Ches., Altrincham)||Salter, Arthur Clavell|
|Bridgeman, William Clive||Harris, Henry Percy||Sanders, Robert Arthur|
|Bull, Sir William James||Harrison-Broadley, H. B.||Sanderson, Lancelot|
|Burn, Colonel C. R.||Henderson, Major H. (Berks, Abingdon)||Sandys, G. J.|
|Butcher, John George||Hibbert, Sir Henry F.||Stanier, Beville|
|Campbell, Captain Duncan F. (Ayr, N.)||Hohler, Gerald Fitzroy||Stanley, Hon. G. F. (Preston)|
|Campion, William Robert||Hope, James Fitzalan (Sheffield)||Swift, Rigby|
|Carlile, Sir Edward Hildred||Home, Edgar (Surrey, Guildford)||Sykes, Alan John (Ches., Knutsford)|
|Cassel, Felix||Houston, Robert Paterson||Sykes, Sir Mark (Hull, Central)|
|Cautley, H. S.||Hunter, Sir Charles Rodk.||Talbot, Lord Edmund|
|Cave, George||Ingleby, Holcombe||Terrell, H. (Gloucester)|
|Cecil, Evelyn (Aston Manor)||Jessel, Captain H. M.||Thomson, W. Mitchell- (Down, North)|
|Chaloner, Colonel R. G. W.||Lloyd, George Butler (Shrewsbury)||Thynne, Lord Alexander|
|Cooper, Sir Richard Ashmole||Locker-Lampson, G. (Salisbury)||Weigall, Captain A. G.|
|Courthope, George Loyd||Locker-Lampson, O. (Ramsey)||Weston, Colonel J. W.|
|Craig, Norman, (Kent, Thanet)||Lockwood, Rt. Hon. Lt.-Colonel A. R.||Wheler, Granville C. H.|
|Crichton-Stuart, Lord Ninian||M'Neill, Ronald (Kent, St. Augustine's)||Willoughby, Major Hon. Claud|
|Denison-Pender, J. C.||Mills, Hon. Charles Thomas||Wills, Sir Gilbert|
|Dickson, Rt. Hon. C. Scott||Morrison-Bell, Capt. E. F. (Ashburton)||Wilson, Captain Leslie O. (Reading)|
|Doughty, Sir George||Morrison-Bell, Major A. C. (Honiton)||Wood, John (Stalybridge)|
|Du Cros, Arthur Philip||Newton, Harry Kottingham||Worthington-Evans, L.|
|Du Pre, W. Baring||Orde-Powlett, Hon. W. G. A.||Yate, Colonel C. E.|
|Eyres-Monsell, Bolton M.||Paget, Almeric Hugh|
|Fitzroy, Hon. E. A.||Parker, Sir Gilbert (Gravesend)||TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—Sir|
|Gardner, Ernest||Pease, Herbert Pike (Darlington)||F. Banbury and Mr. Ormsby-Gore.|
|Abraham, William (Dublin, Harbour)||Addison, Dr. Christopher||Alden, Percy|
|Acland, Francis Dyke||Agnew, Sir George William||Allen, Arthur A. (Dumbartonshire)|
|Adamson, William||Ainsworth, John Stirling||Allen, Rt. Hon. Charles P. (Stroud)|
§ expenditure, I do not know. We have to vote this money, and it is only right that hon. Members on this side should know where the money goes.
Mr. McKINNON WOOD
This Grant arises purely under the Act of 1872, Section 67, and it is not really affected by the Scottish Education Act, 1908.
§ Mr. JAMES HOPE
Surely the Act of 1908 must have relieved to a greater extent than the existing Act.
Mr. McKINNON WOOD
Then the rates would be reduced, and the claims of this particular Grant would be reduced.
§ Question put. "That a Supplementary sum, not exceeding £9,000, be granted for the said Service."
§ The Committee divided: Ayes, 105; Noes, 247.
|Arnold, Sydney||Harvey, A. G. C. (Rochdale)||Peace, William (Limehouse)|
|Baker, Harold T. (Accrington)||Harvey, T. E. (Leeds, West)||Phillips, John (Longford, S.)|
|Barnes, George N.||Harvey, W. E. (Derbyshire, N.E.)||Pirie, Duncan V.|
|Barran, Sir John N. (Hawick Burghs)||Haslam, Lewis (Monmouth)||Ponsonby, Arthur A. W. H.|
|Beale, Sir William Phipson||Hayden, John Patrick||Pratt, J. W.|
|Beauchamp, Sir Edward||Hazleton, Richard||Price, C. E. (Edinburgh, Central)|
|Bock, Arthur Cecil||Henderson, Arthur (Durham)||Price, Sir Robert J. (Norfolk, E.)|
|Benn, W. W. (T. Hamlets, St. George)||Higham, John Sharp||Pringle, William M. R.|
|Bentham, G. J.||Hodge, John||Radford, G. H.|
|Boland, John Pius||Hogge, James Myles||Rattan, Peter Wilson|
|Booth, Frederick Handel||Holmes, Daniel Turner||Raphael, Sir Herbert H.|
|Bowerman, Charles W.||Horne, C. Silvester (Ipswich)||Rea, Walter Russell (Scarborough)|
|Boyle, Daniel (Mayo, North)||Howard, Hon. Geoffrey||Reddy, Michael|
|Brady, Patrick Joseph||Hudson, Walter||Redmond, John E. (Waterford)|
|Brocklehurst, W. B.||Hughes, Spencer Leigh||Redmond, William Archer (Tyrone, E.)|
|Brunner, John F. L.||Illingworth, Percy H.||Rendall, Athelstan|
|Buckmaster, Sir Stanley O.||John, Edward Thomas||Richardson, Thomas (Whitehaven)|
|Burke, E. Haviland-||Jones, Edgar R. (Merthyr Tydvil)||Roberts, Charles H. (Lincoln)|
|Burns, Rt. Hon. John||Jones, H. Haydn (Merioneth)||Roberts, George H. (Norwich)|
|Buxton, Noel (Norfolk, North)||Jones, J. Towyn (Carmarthen, East)||Roberts, Sir J. H. (Denblghs)|
|Byles, Sir William Pollard||Joyce, Michael||Robertson, Sir G. Scott (Bradford)|
|Carr-Gomm, H. W.||Kellaway, Frederick George||Robertson, John M. (Tyneside)|
|Cawley, Sir Frederick (Prestwich)||Kelly, Edward||Robinson, Sidney|
|Cawley, Harold T. (Lancs., Heywood)||Kenyon, Barnet||Roch, Walter F. (Pembroke)|
|Chancellor, Henry George||Kilbride, Denis||Roche, Augustine (Louth)|
|Chapple, Dr. William Allen||Lambert, Richard (Wilts, Cricklade)||Roe, Sir Thomas|
|Clancy, John Joseph||Lardner, James C. R.||Rowlands, James|
|Clough, William||Law, Hugh A. (Donegal, West)||Rowntree, Arnold|
|Clynes, J. R.||Levy, Sir Maurice||Russell, Rt. Hon. Thomas W.|
|Collins, Godfrey P. (Greenock)||Lewis, Rt. Hon. John Herbert||Samuel, Rt. Hon. H. L. (Cleveland)|
|Collins, Sir Stephen (Lambeth)||Lundon, Thomas||Samuel, J. (Stockton-on-Tees)|
|Condon, Thomas Joseph||Lyell, Charles Henry||Scanlan, Thomas|
|Cornwall, Sir Edwin A.||Lynch, Arthur Alfred||Scott, A. MacCallum (Glas., Bridgeton)|
|Cotton, William Francis||Macdonald, J. Ramsay (Leicester)||Sheeny, David|
|Craig, Herbert J. (Tynemouth)||Macdonald, J. M. (Falkirk Burghs)||Sherwell, Arthur James|
|Crooks, William||Macnamara, Rt. Hon. Dr. T. J.||Shortt, Edward|
|Crumley, Patrick||MacNeill, J. G. Swift (Donegal, South)||Smith, Albert (Lancs., Clitheroe)|
|Cullinan, John||Macpherson, James Ian||Smyth, Thomas F. (Leitrim, S.)|
|Dalziel, Rt. Hon. Sir J. H. (Kirkcaldy)||MacVeagh, Jeremiah||Stanley, Albert (Staffs, N.W.)|
|Davies, David (Montgomery Co.)||M'Callum, Sir John M.||Strauss, Edward A. (Southwark, West)|
|Davies, Ellis William (Eifion)||McKenna, Rt. Hon. Reginald||Sutton, John E.|
|Davies, Timothy (Lincs., Louth)||M'Laren, Hon.F.W.S. (Lincs.,Spalding)||Swann, Rt. Hon. Sir Charles E.|
|Davies, Sir W. Howell (Bristol, S.)||M'Micking, Major Gilbert||Taylor, Theodore C. (Radcliffe)|
|Dawes, James Arthur||Manfield, Harry||Taylor, Thomas (Bolton)|
|Delany, William||Markham, Sir Arthur Basil||Tennant, Harold John|
|Denman, Hon. Richard Douglas||Marshall, Arthur Harold||Thomas, J. H.|
|Devlin, Joseph||Mason, David M. (Coventry)||Thorne, G. R. (Wolverhampton)|
|Dewar, Sir J. A.||Meagher, Michael||Toulmin, Sir George|
|Dillon, John||Meehan, Francis E. (Leitrim, N.)||Trevelyan, Charles Philips|
|Donelan, Captain A.||Meehan, Patrick J. (Queen's Co., Leix)||Verney, Sir Harry|
|Doris, William||Millar, James Duncan||Walton, Sir Joseph|
|Duffy, William J.||Molloy, Michael||Ward, John (Stoke-upon-Trent)|
|Duncan, C. (Barrow-in-Furness)||Molteno, Percy Alport||Wardle, George J.|
|Duncan, J. Hastings (Yorks, Otley)||Money, L. G. Chiozza||Waring, Walter|
|Edwards, Clement (Glamorgan, E.)||Montagu, Hon. E. S.||Warner, Sir Thomas Courtenay T.|
|Edwards, John Hugh (Glamorgan, Mid)||Mooney, John J.||Wason, John Cathcart (Orkney)|
|Elverston, Sir Harold||Morison, Hector||Watt, Henry A.|
|Esmonde, Dr. John (Tipperary, N.)||Morton, Alpheus Cleophas||Webb, Henry|
|Esmonde, Sir Thomas (Wexford, N.)||Muldoon, John||Wedgwood, Josiah C.|
|Essex, Sir Richard Walter||Murphy, Martin J.||White, J. Dundas (Glasgow, Tradeston)|
|Falconer, James||Murray, Captain Hon. Arthur C.||White, Patrick (Meath, North)|
|Farrell, James Patrick||Needham, Christopher T.||Whittaker, Rt. Hon. Sir Thomas P.|
|Fenwick, Rt. Hon. Charles||Neilson, Francis||Whyte, Alexander F.|
|Ffrench, Peter||Nolan, Joseph||Wilkie, Alexander|
|Field, William||Norton, Captain Cecil W.||Williams, Aneurin (Durham, N.W.)|
|Fitzgibbon, John||Nugent, Sir Walter Richard||Williams, John (Glamorgan)|
|Flavin, Michael Joseph||O'Brien, Patrick (Kilkenny)||Williams, Llewelyn (Carmarthen)|
|Gelder, Sir William Alfred||O'Connor, John (Kildare, N.)||Williams, Penry (Middlesbrough)|
|Gill, A. H.||O'Connor, T. P. (Liverpool)||Williamson, Sir Archibald|
|Gladstone, W. G. C.||O'Doherty, Philip||Wilson, W. T. (Westhoughton)|
|Glanville, H. J.||O'Donnell, Thomas||Winfrey, Sir Richard|
|Goddard, Sir Daniel Ford||O'Dowd, John||Wing, Thomas Edward|
|Goldstone, Frank||O'Kelly, Edward P. (Wicklow, W.)||Wood, Rt. Hon. T. McKinnon (Glasgow)|
|Greig, Colonel James William||O'Malley, William||Yeo, Alfred William|
|Griffith, Ellis Jones||O'Neill, Dr. Charles (Armagh, S.)||Young, William (Perth, East)|
|Gwynn, Stephen Lucius (Galway)||O'Shaughnessy, P. J.||Yoxall, Sir James Henry|
|Hackett, John||O'Shee, James John|
|Hancock, J. G.||O'Sullivan, Timothy|
|Harcourt, Robert V. (Montrose)||Outhwaite, R. L.||TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—Mr.|
|Hardie, J. Keir||Parker, James (Halifax)||Gulland and Mr.|
|Harmsworth, Cecil (Luton, Beds)||Pearce, Robert (Staffs, Leek)|
§ Original Question put, and agreed to.2082
§ Resolutions to be reported.