HC Deb 08 March 1923 vol 161 cc702-3
36. Mr. HARRIS

asked the President of the Board of Education whether he can give the number of elementary school teachers in England now unemployed: what is the reason so many are out of work; whether he is considering any scheme to assist them financially while they are unemployed; and whether he will consider meeting the present position by bringing them within the scheme of unemployment insurance?


I may refer the hon. Member to the Table published with the reply I gave on the 15th February last to the hon. Member for the University of Wales (Mr. Lewis), which was based on the latest information then in my possession. I am glad to say that the Returns, as now completed, show a slightly reduced number of teachers un- employed (627 instead of 643). Failure to find employment is, no doubt, to be attributed to the fall in the number of children, the suspension of proposals for educational development, and the measures recently taken by many authorities to effect economies. I have no power to provide unemployment benefits for teachers.


How does the right hon. Gentleman think these people can live, as they do not come under the insurance scheme? Does he suggest that they should go to the Poor Law in the meantime?


I may have my own opinions about that, but that does not arise out of the question. The hon. Member asked me questions as to facts, to which I have endeavoured to reply.