HC Deb 18 May 1914 vol 62 cc1567-8

asked the President of the Board of Education (1) whether, with reference to the Merthyr Roman Catholic school case, he can state why the teacher was dismissed and what provision has been made for the instruction of the children while the school has been closed; and whether he can state why no inquiry has been held; and (2) whether seventeen Roman Catholic teachers have been dismissed against the will of the managers in the Merthyr Roman Catholic school case?

28. Mr. BOLAND

asked the President of the Board of Education whether, in view of all the circumstances of the case, he will direct an inquiry to be made concerning the Dowlais school dispute?


The local education authority informed the Board on the 16th April that, having regard to the diminished number of children in attendance at the school, they had requested the managers to give notice to any assistant teachers whose services were not required, and that as the managers refused to carry out this direction they had given certain assistant teachers at the school one month's notice of dismissal on 1st April. So far as I am aware, the school has not been closed, but I understand that a large number of children have been withdrawn from it. The Board have held no inquiry because no question up to now had arisen which would enable the Board to intervene under the provisions of the Education Act, 1902. I am now, however, informed by the correspondent of the managers that they intend to appeal to the Board against the action of the local education authority. On receipt of an appeal disclosing grounds which give the Board jurisdiction, I shall be prepared to hold a public inquiry.


Is the right hon Gentleman aware that the assistant teachers who were dismissed were going to be replaced by teachers not of the same religious faith as the denomination of the school?


I have not heard what is the religious faith of the assistant teachers.


When is the inquiry to which the right hon. Gentleman alludes to be held?


If an appeal comes from the managers at once I shall be prepared at once to appoint an officer of the Board to go down and hold an inquiry.