§ Major LLEWELLIN
I beg to move, in page 3, line 1, after the word "authority," to insert the words:or being in receipt of a maintenance allowance under the Act wilfully omits to inform the local education authority that his total income has increased beyond the limit entitling him to such allowance.We have now come to the penal section of this Bill, which is very necessary in any Bill making grants such as those which this Measure is going to make. The Bill provides penalties for the making ofany false declaration or false statement or otherwise wilfully deceives or attempts to deceive any local education authority.In my view, those words are insufficient to bear out the full effect that this Subsection should have. According to the Schedule an applicant has to make a declaration to the local education authority if his income substantially increases, and, if he fails to do so, he is liable to the penalty provided for anyone whowilfully deceives or attempts to deceive any local education authority.My submission is that that is the wrong way to create a legal and criminal offence, because the criminal offence should be made clear in the Section, and you should not have to refer to some other part of the Bill or some other Act of Parliament in order to find out the liability of a parent if he does not declare the full measure of his increase of income. Everybody will agree that in no case should the maintenance allowance be paid above the limit prescribed. My Amendment makes it clear to everybody and to the courts that will have to administer this Measure that, if a man wilfully omits to state that his income has gone above the prescribed limit, then he shall be liable to the penalties which the Minister has placed in this Clause.
2026 All I am endeavouring to do by this Amendment is to make more clear what is intended to be expressed in the Schedule and in the Clause? My submission to the Minister and to the House is that this is a substantial Amendment which ought to be accepted. It does not create any criminal offence in addition to the one that the Minister thinks he has created by the words "wilfully deceives or attempts to deceive." I do not think that those words will achieve what the Minister desires, and that is why this point should be made clear to any court which will have to administer this Measure when it becomes an Act. We want to make plain exactly what Parliament means by those words. It should not be necessary to place a power of this kind in the Schedule, and it would be much better to trust to the actual words in this Section which create a criminal offence. I hope that I have made my point clear to the Committee. I think my proposal is a reasonable one, and I hope that it will be accepted by the Government.
§ The PRESIDENT of the BOARD of EDUCATION (Sir Charles Trevelyan)
The object of the hon. and gallant Member in moving this Amendment and the object of the Government in Sub-section (3) are precisely the same, and everything turns on the interpretation which is put upon the words in the Bill. I should have thought that what the hon. and gallant Member seeks is provided for by the Bill itself. The claimant has tc sign a form of claim in which he declares that if his income from any source substantially increases:It is my duty to inform the local education authority of the fact immediately, and that I may be liable to a penalty for wilfully deceiving or attempting to deceive that authority if I fail to do so.When we turn to the Bill itself, we find, in Sub-section (3) of Clause 1, that any person is liable to the penalties provided who:wilfully deceives or attempts to deceive any local education authority.I am told by my legal advisers that that provision is sufficient to cover the point raised by this Amendment, but, if the hon. and gallant Gentleman is willing to withdraw his Amendment and discuss it with me and my legal advisers, I shall be willing to take that course. If after 2027 that any doubt remains, I shall be willing to make it certain that the object which the hon. and gallant Member has in view is achieved.
§ Major LLEWELLIN
Some of my hon. Friends are rather keen about this Amendment, and I cannot consent to withdraw it now.
§ Mr. TURTON
My opinion is that this Amendment does not go far enough. The Bill does not place the duty upon any applicant to inform the local education authority of his changed circumstances, and there is no mention of that duty until we come to the Schedule. The Amendment which we are discussing would place that duty in the penal Clause. I would ask the Minister, when he considers this matter, to make it quite clear in Subsection (2) that not only has a person to make application as set out in the Schedule, but that he should also make further applications and returns when the income changes. The object of this Amendment is to place this obligation in Sub-section (3) instead of in the Schedule. It is a great mistake to have two alternative remedies for the same offence. So far as I understand the question, this offence of making a false statement about one's income is already covered by Section 5, paragraphs (a) and (b) of the Perjury Act of 1911, which provides under (a) that anybody who makes a false statement in a statutory declaration or under (b) makes a false statement in any return or other document authorised by Act of Parliament is liable to imprisonment. I think it would be wise to omit the whole of this Sub-section completely, and to rely on the Section of the Perjury Act which I have mentioned. The penalties provided under the Perjury Act are very similar to the penalties which the Minister has laid down in this Subsection. The difference being that, instead of three months, the penalty under the Perjury Act is six months, and, instead of a fine of £25, the fine is £100. I am as desirous as the Attorney-General to have the law made perfectly clear on this point, and, if this is not done, a great deal of hardship will be caused, as well as a great deal of expense. If the President of the Board of Education will consider these two points before the Report stage, I think he will find that there is a great deal of substance in them.
§ Sir DONALD MACLEAN
I am very doubtful about the advisability of introducing into this Bill any offences which have anything whatever to do with perjury, because perjury is a very difficult thing indeed to prove. I hope the Committee will bear that point in mind. We have been told that it is not customary to provide against offences in the Schedule, but may I remind the hon. Member who used that argument that in the Schedules dealing with the Income Tax you have penalties of all sorts. The object of this Amendment, as I understand it, is to ensure that the statements made are perfectly accurate and bona fide at the time that they are made, and that it should be the duty of the person receiving a maintenance allowance to inform the local education authority of any increase in his total income, and that the applicant should not have the advantage of any change of circumstances. I think that is the object of the Mover of this Amendment. I hope that, if it is necessary to make that clear, it will be made clear, and I think that is the substance of the hon. and gallant Member's point with regard to the Amendment. I hope, however, that there will not be too many of these "riders," so to speak, because, as every lawyer knows, they cut down the general words at the beginning of the Section.
§ Mr. HARRIS
I would ask the Committee to have a sense of proportion. This allowance will be for one year. It is true that in these days wages fluctuate enormously, but the danger of a large increase of income in the case of the people concerned is not very great, and, when they have to claim the allowance for another child, I assume I am right in saying that they will have to file another application and make a fresh statement.
§ Lord EUSTACE PERCY
The question raised by this Amendment is not really a legal question, but simply whether the applicant will know when he commits an offence. The offence is created, to start with, by Sub-section (3), of he omits to report a change of income, and it is defined there as wilfully deceiving or attempting to deceive any local education authority. What is the definition of that deceit or attempt at deceit? For that, you have 2029 to turn to the Schedule, where the definition is given, not, as in the Income Tax Schedules, as a substantive definition, but in the form which the applicant has to fill in. The definition, as it is extracted from that form, is:I understand that if my income from any source or that of my wife (or husband) living with me substantially increases at any time….What will the men and women who are going to sign this declaration understand by the words "substantially increases"? In many cases they will convey no meaning to them at all. The main point of the Amendment is to make the offence precise. If the income has increased beyond the limit entitling the applicant to the allowance, that is clear and definite. There is no doubt that under the Bill a man who does not report such a change of income will be legally liable, but his liability will be expressed in this vague and sloppy phrase "substantially increases." We want it to be defined, so that a man may know exactly where he stands, and there may be no necessity for argument as to what is a substantial increase and what is not. Surely that is reasonable.
§ Mr. KELLY
I did not want to intervene in this discussion, but I would like to know from the Mover of the Amendment what he really means. Is this to be a daily report by the individual as to the wages he has earned? If he happens to be working in one of those trades where there is a demand in the week before. Christmas for the working of extra hours on three or four days, is he expected to attend each day at the education office in order to report that his income is a shilling or two more than the figure previously entered? Does it mean that, if he works a little overtime and thereby increases his wages that week by another half-crown, he has to report it? I do not know whether hon. Members opposite are trying to make this into as penal a Measure as they possibly can. From my own experience of testing under the Feeding of Children Act, I would be rid of the whole lot of this, because it is bad for everyone concerned—it is bad for the families and bad for the children also. I can understand hon. Members opposite not wishing to withdraw this demand that the man who is called upon to work a little over- 2030 time should have to report it., because they are trying to make the Measure as bad as they possibly can.
§ Major LLEWELLIN
I am afraid that the hon. Member for Rochdale (Mr. Kelly) has missed the point of my Amendment. One of the things that may happen under this Bill as it is drafted is that, if a man's income goes up by a little one week, he may not know whether the court will say that that is a substantial rise or not, and, if he does not go in and report it, he may find that he is liable under this Bill as it has been drafted by the Minister. If, however, he knows from the start what the prescribed limits are, and then, as laid down in my Amendment, wilfully omits to state that his income has gone beyond the prescribed limit—
§ Major LLEWELLIN
He does not have to go in every time he gets an increase of sixpence or a shilling, but, when the prescribed limit has been laid down, as I understand it may be when this Bill becomes law, if it does become law, he should be told what that limit is. That is the point of a couple of other Amendments that I have on the Paper. Then he will know at once when his income goes beyond that prescribed limit, and then, of course, he ought to go to the local education authority and say that he does not claim this allowance any more, because his income has gone above the limit. He ought to do so then just as much as when he makes his original claim, and that is all that my Amendment seeks to provide. It does not seek to leave this criminal offence so that a man will not know whether the court will say that his income has substantially increased or not.
I do not know whether, in the case of a man earning, say, £2 a week, a rise of 5s. would be considered a substantial increase, or whether, if a man was earning £3 a week, a rise of 10s. would be regarded as a substantial increase. Is it a substantial increase or is it not? Probably everyone in this House would take a different view on that question, and it is because we do not want these people to be in danger of being brought before the magistrates—[Interruption.] Hon. Members may laugh, but it is far better to have your 2031 criminal law accurate in these matters. Do they want people who, perhaps, suddenly come into a large income to get these maintenance allowances? Does the Minister want that? He is providing against it in his Bill, and, in my submission, he should provide against it in a manner that can be seen and understood by all those who will come under this scheme. I know that the Minister has tried to meet me on this point, but personally I think there is a good deal in having these prescribed limits laid down. At any rate, I had hoped that he would be able to accept my Amendment as I have moved it. I do not mind so much about the first words, but I think we want the provision as to wilful omission, and also the provision as to the prescribed limit, because that is the only way in which people receiving these allowances can be certain, if they have an increase in income, that they are on the right side of the law.
§ Lord E. PERCY
I should not have risen again had it not been for the attitude taken up by hon. Members opposite. It is clear from the debate that hon. Members opposite do not realise what they are doing in this Bill. I will put a specific case. A man is, and has been for the last two or three months, employed on two days a week. Christmas trade comes on, as the hon. Member for Rochdale (Mr. Kelly) has said, and he is fully employed for five and a-half days a week; that is to say, his wages are more than doubled. If your wages are more than doubled, they are certainly substantially increased, and, under this Bill as it stands, and under the form that these people will have to sign, that man would be bound to go back to the education office and say, "I am sorry my income has substantially increased." The effect of this Amendment is that he would not be obliged to make any such report if the increase in his income did not carry him beyond the prescribed limit.
§ Lord E. PERCY
The Bill would apply if the increase was substantial, whether it did or did not bring his income outside the prescribed limit, and he would 2032 be obliged to report, but under our Amendment, so long as his income is not brought outside the prescribed limit, it does not matter how substantial the rise in wages is.
§ Lord E. PERCY
I would ask hon. Members to look at this matter in a businesslike spirit. Surely, the Front Government Bench will not deny what I have said. The hon. Member for the Drake Division of Plymouth (Mr. Moses) says that, if the increase does not bring him outside the prescribed limit, he will not report it, but he is bound under the Bill to report it, and the Minister has told us that, if he does not do so, he commits an offence which makes him liable to a fine or imprisonment. It is precisely the sort of misunderstanding that is represented by the remark of the hon. Member for the Drake Division that makes us so anxious to press this Amendment, and I would urge the Government to accept it. They know that all that can be said against it is that it makes more clear, although less onerous, what they have already put into the Bill, and I appeal to the right hon. Gentleman to accept it.
§ Mr. McSHANE
I hope that the Minister will not accept this Amendment. In the case which the Noble Lord has put, the increase would be, as he says, a substantial increase, and it would be for the education authority to decide the matter. No education authority worthy of the name would be so meticulous as to require an applicant who has been receiving this allowance of 5s. a week to say each week whether his income is 1d. or 1½d. or 2d. more. This Amendment only represents the general frame of mind of hon. Members opposite. They want the Poor Law system applied to maintenance allowances. They want the constant investigation that was recommended by the Committee which the right hon. Gentleman the Minister of Education set up. I want., as far as I can, to oppose that system, and to keep the children in respect of whom these allowances will be given free from any suggestion that a constant inquisitorial investigation is going to be made into their circumstances.
There is, as far as I can see, no Amendment to the contrary effect. No 2033 Amendment has been put down by hon. Members opposite to make it quite certain that a person whose circumstances in one week prevent him from getting a maintenance allowance shall take good care that he shall sign an application the following week when his income falls below what it has normally been. The whole case against this Amendment is that in the very nature of things wages vary, and on such a widespread scale and by such varying amounts that an education committee will have to take broad and long views with regard to these matters, and not adopt an inquisitorial system. I hope the right hon. Gentleman will stand against the Amendment. In the main, it comes from those who want to apply Poor Law methods. We do not stand for that.
§ Mr. BEAUMONT
It is apparent from the speeches of hon. Members opposite that they do not yet realise exactly what the Bill is doing. The hon. Member who has just spoken has told us that any local authority worthy of the name would not be so meticulous as to make these inquiries, but it does not rest only with the local authorities. Someone's next door neighbour, who has a grudge against him, can give the information and insist on a prosecution being taken.
§ Any citizen who knows the facts can, for spite, or for any other reason, compel a prosecution to be taken. Without some such provision as this, anyone whose wages are substantially increased and who does not inform the local education authority commits an offence and is liable to prosecution. If the right hon. Baronet cannot accept the Amendment, I hope he will give the matter his consideration and clarify the law.
§ Captain CROOKSHANK
Hon. Members opposite seem to have missed the point. The duty is laid, not on the local education authority, to ferret out what is going on, but on the claimant himself.
§ Captain CROOKSHANK
The hon. Member was saying he objected to it being part of the duty of the local authority to find out whether people have an increase of income or not. I am reminding him that the duty is on the claimant and not on the local education authority. It is one more instance of how very little Government supporters know about the Bill.
§ Question put, "That those words be there inserted."
§ The Committee divided: Ayes, 138; Noes, 269.2037
|Division No. 42.]||AYES.||[4.49 p.m.|
|Acland-Troyte, Lieut-Colonel||Colville, Major D. J.||Haslam, Henry C.|
|Albery, Irving James||Cuourtauld, Major J. S||Henderson, Capt. R. R.(Oxf'd,Henley)|
|Atholl, Duchess of||Courthope, Colonel Sir G. L.||Hennessy, Major Sir G. R. J.|
|Baldwin, Rt. Hon. Stanley (Bewdley)||Crichton-Stuart, Lord C.||Hills, Major Rt. Hon. John Waller|
|Balniel, Lord||Crookshank, Capt. H. C.||Hoare, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir S. J. G.|
|Beamish, Rear-Admiral T. P. H.||Culverwell, C T (Bristol, West)||Hunter-Weston, Lt.-Gen. Sir Aylmer|
|Beaumont, M. W.||Dalkeith, Earl of||Hurd, Percy A.|
|Bellairs, Commander Carlyon||Davies, Maj. Geo. F. (Somerset, Yeovll)||Hutchison. Maj.-Gen. Sir R.|
|Birchall, Major Sir John Dearman||Dugdale, Capt. T. L.||Jones, Henry Haydn (Merioneth)|
|Boothby, R. J. G.||Eden, Captain Anthony||Knox, Sir Alfred|
|Bowater, Col. Sir T. Vansittart||Edmondson, Major A. J.||Lamb, Sir J. Q.|
|Bowyer, Captain Sir George E. W.||Elliot, Major Walter E.||Lane Fox, Col. Rt. Hon. George R.|
|Boyce, H. L.||England, Colonel A.||Law, Sir Alfred (Derby. High Peak)|
|Briscoe, Richard George||Erskine, Lord (Somerset, Westonat-s.-M.)||Leighton, Major B. E. P.|
|Brown, Col. D. C. (N'th'l'd., Hexham)||Everard, W. Lindsay||Lewis, Oswald (Colchester)|
|Brown, Brig.-Gen. H.C.(Berks, Newb'y)||Falle, Sir Bertram G.||Llewellin, Major J. J.|
|Bullock, Captain Malcolm||Ferguson, Sir John||Locker-Lampson, Rt. Hon. Godfrey|
|Burton, Colonel H. W.||Fermoy, Lord||Long, Major Hon. Eric|
|Butler, R. A.||Fielden, E. B||Makins, Brigadier-General E.|
|Cadogan, Major Hon. Edward||Fremantle, Lieut.-Colonel Francis E.||Margesson, Captain H. D.|
|Campbell, E. T.||Ganzonl, Sir John||Marjoribanks, Edward|
|Castle Stewart, Earl of||Gault, Lieut.-Col. Andrew Hamilton||Mason, Colonel Glyn K.|
|Cayzer, Sir C. (Chester, City)||Gilmour, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir John||Mansell, Eyres, Com. Rt. Hon. Sir B.|
|Cayzer, Maj. Sir Herbt. R.(Prtsmth'S.)||Glyn, Major R. G. C.||Moore, Lieut.-Colonel T. C. R. (Ayr)|
|Cazalet, Captain Victor A.||Graham, Fergus (Cumberland, N.)||Mulrhead, A. J.|
|Chadwick, Capt. Sir Robert Burton||Guinness, Rt. Hon. Walter E.||Newton, Sir D. G. C. (Cambridge)|
|Chamberlain, Rt. Hon. N. (Edgbaston)||Hacking, Rt. Hon. Douglas H.||Nicholson, O. (Westminster)|
|Christie, J. A.||Hall, Lieut.-Col. Sir F. (Dulwich)||Oman, Sir Charles William c.|
|Clydesdale, Marquess of||Hammersley, S. S.||Ormsby-Gore, Rt. Hon. William|
|Cobb, Sir Cyril||Hanbury, C.||Peake, Captain Osbert|
|Cockerill, Brig.-General Sir George||Hannon, Patrick Joseph Henry||Penny, Sir George|
|Cohen, Major J. Brunei||Hartington, Marquess of||percy, Lord Eustace (Hastings)|
|Colman, N. C. D.||Harvey, Major S. E. (Devon, Totnes)||Peto, Sir Basil E. (Devon, Barnstaple)|
|Power, Sir John Cecil||Simms, Major-General J.||Turton, Robert Hugh|
|Ramsbotham, H.||Smith, R W. (Aberd'n & Kinc'dine, C.)||Vaughan Morgan, Sir Kenyon|
|Rathbone Eleanor||Smith-Carington, Neville W.||Ward, Lieut.-Col. Sir A. Lambert|
|Rentoul, Sir Gervais S.||Smithers, Waldron||Waterhouse, Captain Charles|
|Reynolds, Col. Sir James||Somerville, A. A. (Windsor)||William Charles (Devon, Torquay)|
|Richardson Sir P. W. (Sur'y, Ch'ts'y)||Southby, Commander A. R. J.||Windsor-Clive, Lieut.-Colonel George|
|Rodd, Rt. Hon. Sir James Rennell||Stanley, Maj. Hon. O. (W'morland)||Withers, Sir John James|
|Ross, Major Ronald D.||Stuart, Hon. J. (Moray and Nairn)||Wornersley, W. J.|
|Ruggles-Brise, Lieut.-Colonel E. A.||Sueter, Rear-Admiral M. F.||Wright, Brig.-Gen. W. (Tavist'k)|
|Russell, Alexander West (Tynemouth)||Taylor, Vice-Admiral E. A.||Young, Rt. Hon. Sir Hilton.|
|Salmon, Major I.||Thomas, Major L. B. (King's Norton)|
|Samuel, A. M. (Surrey, Farnham)||Thomson, Sir F.||TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—|
|Sandman, Sir N. Stewart||Tinne, J. A.||Captain Wallace and Sir Victor Warrender.|
|Savery, S. S.||Train, J.|
|Adamson, W. M. (Staff., Cannock)||Gill, T. H.||Lunn, William|
|Addison, Rt. Hon. Dr. Christopher||Glassey, A. E.||Macdonald, Gordon (Ince)|
|Aitchison, Rt. Hon. Craigle M.||Gossling, A. G.||Mac Donald, Rt. Hon. J. R. (Seaham)|
|Alexander, Rt. Hon. A. V. (Hillsbro')||Gould, F.||MacDonald, Malcolm (Bassetlaw)|
|Alpass, J. H.||Graham, Rt. Hon. Wm. (Edin., Cent.)||McElwee, A.|
|Ammon, Charles George||Gray, Milner||McEntee, V. L.|
|Angell, Norman||Greenwood, Rt. Hon. A. (Colne)||McGovern, J. (Glasgow, Shettleston)|
|Arnott, John||Grentell, D. R. (Glamorgan)||McKinlay, A,|
|Aske, Sir Robert||Griffith, F. Kingsley (Middlesbro'W.)||Maclean, Sir Donald (Cornwall, N.)|
|Attlee, Clement Richard||Griffiths, T. (Monmouth, Pontypool)||Maclean, Nell (Glasgow, Govan)|
|Ayles, Walter||Groves, Thomas E.||MacNeill Weir, L.|
|Barnes, Alfred John||Grundy, Thomas W.||McShane, John James|
|Barr, James||Hall, G. H. (Merthyr Tydvil)||Malone, C. L Estrange (N'thampton)|
|Batey, Joseph||Hall, Capt. W. G. (Portsmouth, C.)||Mander, Geoffrey le M.|
|Bellamy, Albert||Hamilton, Mary Agnes (Blackburn)||Mansfield, W.|
|Bennett, Sir E. N. (Cardiff, Central)||Hamilton, Sir R. (Orkney & Zetland)||Marcus, M.|
|Bennett. William (Battersea, South)||Hardie, George D.||Markham, S. F.|
|Benson, G.||Harris, Percy A.||Marley, J.|
|Bentham, Dr. Ethel||Hartshorn, Rt. Hon. Vernon||Marshall, Fred|
|Blindell James||Haycock, A, W.||Mathers, George|
|Bondfield, Rt. Hon. Margaret||Heyday, Arthur||Matters, L. W.|
|Bowen, J. W.||Hayes, John Henry||Maxton, James|
|Bowerman, Rt. Hon. Charles W.||Henderson, Right Hon. A. (Burnley)||Messer, Fred|
|Broad, Francis Alfred||Henderson, Thomas (Glasgow)||Middleton, G.|
|Brockway, A. Fenner||Henderson, W. W. (Middx., Enfield)||Millar, J. D.|
|Bromfield, William||Herriotts, J.||Milner, Major J.|
|Brooke, W.||Hirst, G. H. (York W. R. Wentworth)||Montague, Frederick|
|Brothers, M.||Hirst, W. (Bradford, South)||Morgan, Dr. H. B.|
|Brown, C. W. E. (Notts. Mansfield)||Hoffman, P. C.||Morley, Ralph|
|Brown, Ernest (Leith)||Hopkin, Daniel||Morris, Rhys Hopkins|
|Brown, Rt. Hon. J. (South Ayrshire)||Hore-Belisha, Leslie||Morris-Jones, Dr. J. H. (Denbigh)|
|Brown, W. J. (Wolverhampton, West)||Horrabin, J. F.||Morrison, Herbert (Hackney, South)|
|Buchanan, G.||Hudson, James H. (Huddersfield)||Mort, D. L.|
|Burgess, F. G.||Isaacs, George||Moses, J. J. H.|
|Buxton, C. R. (Yorks. W. R. Eliand)||Jenkins, W. (Glamorgan, Neath)||Mosley, Lady C. (Stoke-on-Trent)|
|Cameron. A. G.||John, William (Rhondda, West)||Mosley, Sir Oswald (Smethwick)|
|Cape, Thomas||Jones, F. Llewellyn (Flint)||Muff, G.|
|Carter, W. (St. Pancras, S.W.)||Jones, Rt. Hon. Leif (Camborne)||Muggeridge, H. T.|
|Charleton, H. C.||Jones, Morgan (Caerphilly)||Naylor, T. E.|
|Chater, Daniel||Jones, T. I. Mardy (Pontypridd)||Newman, Sir R. H. S. D. L. (Exeter)|
|Church, Major A. G.||Jowett, Rt. Hon. F. W.||Noel Baker, P. J.|
|Cluse, W S.||Jowitt, Sir W. A. (Preston)||Noel-Buxton, Baroness (Norfolk, N.)|
|Cocks, Frederick Seymour||Kedward, R. M. (Kent, Ashford)||Oldfield, J. R.|
|Compton, Joseph||Kelly, W. T.||Oliver, George Harold (Ilkeston)|
|Cove, William G.||Kirkwood, D.||Oliver, P. M. (Man., Blackley)|
|Cowan, D. M.||Kennedy, Thomas||Owen, Major G. (Carnarvon)|
|Dagger, George||Knight, Holford||Palin, John Henry|
|Dallas, George||Lambert, Rt. Hon. George (S. Molton)||Paling, Wilfrid|
|Dalton, Hugh||Lang, Gordon||Parkinson, John Allen (Wigan)|
|Davies, Rhys John (Westhoughton)||Lansbury, Rt. Hon. George||Perry, S. F.|
|Day, Harry||Lathan, G.||Pethick-Lawrence, F. W.|
|Denman, Hon. R. D.||Law, Albert (Rossendale)||Phillips, Dr. Marlon|
|Dudgeor, Major C. R.||Law, A. (Rossendale)||Picton-Turbervill, Edith|
|Dukes, C.||Lawrence, Susan||Pole, Major D. G.|
|Duncan, Charles||Lawrie, Hugh Hartley (Stalybridge)||Potts, John S.|
|Ede, James Chuter||Lawson, John James||Price, M. P.|
|Edmunds, J. E.||Lawther, W. (Barnard Castle)||Pybus, Percy John|
|Edwards, E. (Morpeth)||Leach, W.||Quibell, D. J. K.|
|Egan, W. H.||Lee, Frank (Derby, N.E.)||Ramsay, T. B. Wilson|
|Evans, Capt. Ernest (Welsh Univer.)||Lee, Jennie (Lanark, Northern)||Raynes, W. R.|
|Foot, Isaac||Lees, J.||Richards, R.|
|Forgan, Dr. Robert||Lewis, T. (Southampton)||Riley, Ben (Dewsbury)|
|Freeman, Peter||Lindley, Fred W.||Romeril, H. G.|
|Gardner, B. W. (West Ham, Upton)||Lloyd, C. Ellis||Rosbotham, D. S. T.|
|George, Major G. Lloyd (Pembroke)||Logan, David Gilbert||Rowson, Guy|
|George, Megan Lloyd (Anglesea)||Longbottom, A. W.||Russell, Richard John (Eddisbury)|
|Gibbins, Joseph||Lovat Fraser, J. A.||Sanders, W. S.|
|Gibson, H. M. (Lancs, Mossley)||Lowth, Thomas||Sawyer, G. F.|
|Scrymgeour, E.||Sorensen, R.||Watkins, F. C.|
|Scurr, John||Stamford, Thomas W.||Watson, W. M. (Dunfermline)|
|Sexton, James||Stephen, Campbell||Wellock, Wilfred|
|Shaw, Rt. Hon. Thomas (Preston)||Stewart, J. (St. Rollox)||Welsh, James (Paisley)|
|Shepherd, Arthur Lewis||Strachey, E. J. St. Loe||West, F. R.|
|Sherwood, G. H.||Strauss, G. R.||Westwood, Joseph|
|Shield, George William||Sutton, J. E.||White, H. G.|
|Shiels, Dr. Drummond||Taylor, R. A. (Lincoln)||Whiteley, Wilfrid (Birm., Ladywood)|
|Shillaker, J. F.||Taylor, W. B. (Norfolk, S.W.)||Whiteley, William (Blaydon)|
|Shinwell, E.||Thomas, Rt. Hon. J. H. (Derby)||Wilkinson, Ellen C.|
|Short, Alfred (Wednesbury)||Thorne, W. (West Ham, Plaistow)||Williams, David (Swansea, East)|
|Simmons, C. J.||Tillett, Ben||Williams, Dr. J. H. (Llanelly)|
|Sinclair, Sir A. (Caithness)||Tinker, John Joseph||Williams, T. (York, Don Valley)|
|Sitch, Charles H.||Tout, W. J.||Wilson, C. H. (Sheffield, Attercliffe)|
|Smith, Ben (Bermondsey, Rotherhithe)||Townend, A. E.||Wilson, J. (Oldham)|
|Smith, Frank (Nuneaton)||Trevelyan, Rt. Hon. Sir Charles||Wilson, R. J. (Jarrow)|
|Smith, H. B. Lees-(Keighley)||Vaughan, D. J.||Winterton, G. E. (Leicester, Loughb'gh)|
|Smith, Rennie (Penistone)||Viant, S. P.||Wood, Major McKenzie (Banff)|
|Smith, Tom (Pontefract)||Walkden, A. G.||Wright, W. (Rutherglen)|
|Smith, W. R. (Norwich)||Walker, J.|
|Snell, Harry||Wallace, H. W.||TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—|
|Snowden, Rt. Hon. Philip||Wallhead, Richard C.||Mr. Thurtle and Mr. Charles Edwards.|
|Snowden, Thomas (Accrington)||Walters, Rt. Hon. Sir J. Tudor|
§ Major LLEWELLIN
I beg to move, in page 3, line 4, at the end, to insert the words:(4) The local education authority shall pay the maintenance allowance to the person qualified as aforesaid, at such time and place and in such manner as the said authority shall decide, and may determine to pay such allowance in a lump sum every four weeks, provided always that payment shall in no case be withheld from a person for a longer period than four weeks so long as in the opinion of the local education authority he remains qualified as aforesaid.The reason for proposing to insert a provision to this effect is that I cannot find anywhere in the Bill where it is laid down how or when these payments shall be made. I think the Bill is completely silent on the point. All it says is that a person shall be entitled to receive from the local education authority within whose area the child resides a maintenance allowance at the rate of 5s. a week. I should like to ask the President of the Board of Education if that means that a person is entitled at the end of each week to the maintenance allowance The Parliamentary Secretary to the Board of Education spoke on an Amendment which I moved the other night. One hon. Member on the last occasion said that all the Amendments which I moved were in the same spirit. I would remind hon. Members opposite, however, that that particular Amendment was designed to give to those people who were deprived of a maintenance allowance a right of appeal against the decision of the local education authority. I do not think, therefore, that I can be accused by one side or the other of proposing restrictive Amendments.
5.0 p. m.
2038 In reply to the Amendment which I moved the other night, the Parliamentary Secretary said that the person aggrieved because of the withholding of the Maintenance grant already had the right of making an appeal to some court. The court to which he could appeal, I suppose, from what the Parliamentary Secretary said, would be the county court, because there would be a summons for debt. He went on to say that there would be a debt which the local authority owed him. When does this debt become payable? If it is a debt owed to a claimant by a local education authority, the right course in law is for the debtor to seek out the creditor. Does it mean that at the end of every week every local education authority will have to go round to every house in their area to pay the parent the sum? If not, what is to happen? In my submission, we should put something into the Bill to say that these allowances should be paid at such time and manner as the local education authority think fit, providing, as I do in the Amendment, that it cannot withhold the allowance for longer than four weeks. That is what I seek to do in the Amendment. If you put in nothing of the sort, when does the debt about which the Parliamentary Secretary spoke and for which the claimant would have recourse to the county court, become payable? Does it merely become due within a reasonable time, or at the end of a week?
As drafted, the Bill merely lays down that a weekly rate of 5s. shall be paid, and not that there shall be paid 5s, each week. It is very doubtful whether you would succeed, if you went before the 2039 court, and said, "My last week's money has not yet been paid." If I am wrong in that, I should like to be corrected. We ought to lay down some measure of payment of these allowances, and not leave it in the air, as it is at the present time. The way I seek to deal with it in the Amendment is the right and proper one, because local education authorities can be trusted to go into these matters and pay the money fairly. They should have the power to do it in the way I lay down in the Amendment, so that if there is any single non-payment for one particular week for some reason, and if they have not sought out their creditors as a debtor should, the debtor cannot immediately start proceedings—if, indeed, he can start them at all under this Bill—in the county court. That is why some Amendment of this sort is necessary, and why, if it is inserted, it will improve the Bill.
§ Sir C. TREVELYAN
It seems to me that the two sides of the Committee have changed roles. Hon. Gentlemen opposite have hitherto been complaining that we have not shown enough confidence in the local education authority. Now, when we leave a perfectly natural duty to the local education authority, which is to decide how and when and in what reasonable way in the locality to pay the maintenance allowances, they want to give them guidance and restriction. We want to leave it to the local education authority to do it. That is the natural and simple way, and I hope that we shall leave it to them.
§ Mr. BEAUMONT
The reason for the Amendment, as I understood from my hon. and gallant Friend the Member for Uxbridge (Major Llewellin), is that the point is not made clear in the Bill. Like my hon. and gallant Friend, I am not a lawyer, so I do not know but I understand from a legal expert that it is not certain that the Bill as it stands does leave the local education authority the discretion. If the President of the Board of Education can convince us of that, we shall be very much happier.
§ Mr. HARRIS
I entirely agree with the right hon. Gentleman that this is a restrictive Amendment in its relation to the local authorities, but it does raise a really substantial point. If the right 2040 hon. Gentleman is quite clear that the local authorities have complete discretion as to how and when they should make these payments, of course that satisfies me, although we do not want to have too great a variation. I have taken the trouble to inquire as to the practice of the London County Council in distributing maintenance allowances to the children in the secondary schools. The custom there is to pay the money into the savings bank on account of the child. That may be a good or a bad practice, but it has been the custom for a good many years past. It is quite clear that it would be very undesirable that a father should be required to attend each week to collect the money; alternatively, it would be almost equally undesirable if a school attendance officer had to go round to the house each week and hand the money over.
I think this is a substantial point. I have no doubt that the Board of Education have thought it out; but it is something in regard to which the local education authorities should receive help and advice. I do not think we want a great variety of practice. I am all for discretion, but we do not want one local education authority paying once a month and another authority next door, inside the County of London, for instance, paying every week. There ought to be some general practice. I assume that the work will be directed by Regulations issued by the Board. The Board are going to provide a substantial percentage, and therefore they will have the right to assist the local authority. I think that the matter is worth raising. I do not like this particular Amendment, but I hope that the Parliamentary Secretary will give the Committee some guidance.
§ Lord E. PERCY
The right hon. Gentleman twitted us with wanting to restrict the local authorities. Nothing is further from our intention. We put down this Amendment supposing that under the wording of the Bill the local education authority was bound to pay these sums weekly. Hitherto, generally speaking, maintenance allowances—certainly the maintenance allowances to secondary schools—have not been paid at a weekly rate, but have been an annual lump sum paid by the local education authority as it thought fit. The moment you instituted a weekly rate of maintenance allowances 2041 I supposed that the words that "a person shall be entitled to receive an allowance at the rate of 5s. a week" meant that he was to get 5s. every week. We want to know—this is not sarcasm, but simply a desire for information—whether it is perfectly clear, as a. matter of legal drafting, that the local education authority has power to pay this allowance as and when it likes.
§ Sir C. TREVELYAN
Certainly. The words which the right hon. Gentleman quotes are in a form which may give the local authority the power to vary the time. If it were "5s. a week" it would be different; but it is "at the rate of 5s. a week." That, I think, is clear. It leaves a latitude to the local education authorities, and it would be very unwise of the Committee to begin to try to lay down methods of deciding how they should act.
§ Sir WALTER GREAVES-LORD
Is the right hon. Gentleman really content to leave the matter in that way? If the local education authority is under an obligation to pay, it is surely entitled to know when the payment becomes due. Unless you put in some words which gives it the right to fix the date at which the money shall become due, everyone will be in doubt, and the parent may have to wait for a long time, not knowing when the payment will be made. All that the parent knows is that payment shall be at the rate of 5s. a week; he has not the smallest indication when he may expect to receive it. Surely, there should be something in the Bill to remove the doubt. If the right hon. Gentleman says that the matter should be left to the discretion of the local education authority, words should be put into the Bill to show how, or at any rate by whom the time of payment is to be regulated, so that the parties may know when the money is due.
§ Sir CYRIL COBB
I should like to know whether the discretion to the local education authority will enable the authority to pay to the child and not to the parent, if it chooses.
§ Sir C. TREVELYAN
I think that the local education authority will be able to pay to the child, but that may be a matter of opinion. They cannot make the child a claimant. The money may go to the parent through the child.
§ Mr. CHARLES WILLIAMS
As the President of the Board of Education made his statement, we leave entirely to the local education authority the method of payment. Would the authority be able to pay to the child once a quarter, at the end of a term or so? Would they have absolute freedom to pay when it was most convenient for them and in the general interest?
§ Sir ROBERT ASKE
I should have thought that, as a matter of strict legal construction, the words "at the rate of 5s. a week" meant exactly what they say, and did not mean "at the rate of some particular sum per month." I cannot see any reason why the President of the Board of Education should not make this matter perfectly plain. It can be done by the insertion of words providing that the local education authority shall pay in such a manner and at such times as it may think fit. That merely means the insertion of half-a-dozen words, and I should think that the Minister might accept them.
§ Major LLEWELLIN
These are almost the identical words in the Amendment now before the Committee. I am very glad to welcome the hon. Gentleman the Member for East Newcastle-on-Tyne (Sir R. Aske) as a supporter of my Amendment. All that it seeks to do is to give discretion to the local authorities and not to withhold it. I only went one stage further on behalf of the claimants of maintenance allowance and stated that it should not be withheld for more than a month. That was in order to give absolute discretion. This is what my Amendment says:The local education authority shall pay the maintenance allowance to the person qualified as aforesaid, at such time and place and in such manner as the said authority shall decide, and may determine to pay such allowance.I then go on to the four weeks point, and state that it shall not be withheld from anyone who is qualified for more than four weeks. Really that makes the wording of the Act clear and gives full discretion to local authorities, and that is what, I understand, the Minister would like to do. I wish he had welcomed my Amendment to the Bill, because I think that it would improve it. I rose to explain that my Amendment was not one to restrict the local authority.
§ Sir C. TREVELYAN
It would appear that there is really no difference between us until the Amendment of the hon. and gallant Gentleman begins to lay down the kind of things that a local authority might do. I cannot accept the Amendment as it stands; it is not possibly the right phrase to use. I do not in the least mind, on the Report stage, putting in words which will make it clear that the allowances shall be paid at such time and place and in such manner as the local authorities may decide. I do not mind that, but I must take the wording in its proper place. I do not like the latter words of the Amendment which begin to indicate to the local authority what they should or should not do.
§ Major LLEWELLIN
With the permission of the Chair, I should be prepared to move the Amendment to the word "decide."
§ Mr. McSHANE
I hope that my right hon. Friend will accept the suggestion with regard to the period of not more than a month. People should not be expected to wait for more than a month.
§ Sir C. TREVELYAN
I will consider that matter. If the hon. and gallant Member will withdraw his Amendment, I. will bring up suitable words on the Report stage. The only difficulty is that, once you begin laying down anything by way of direction to local authorities, there is no length to which you may not go.
§ Mr. CAMPBELL
Would the right hon. Gentleman also add the Amendment which comes next on the Order Paper as an Amendment to the proposed Amendment—in line 2, after the word "aforesaid," to insert the words:or to the child in respect of whom he is qualified.This matter is very important to the London County Council.
§ Mr. CAMPBELL
If the right hon. Gentleman is going to make an Amendment with regard to the previous matter, I hope that he will consider the question which is raised by the Amendment to the proposed Amendment to which I have referred.
§ Major LLEWELLIN
In view of what the Minister has said, I beg to ask leave to withdraw the Amendment.
§ Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.
§ Mr. BEAUMONT
I beg to move, in page 3, line 5, after the word "sums," to insert the words "not exceeding one million five hundred thousand pounds in any one year."
This is a matter of considerable substance and one to which we attach great importance. Roughly, the object is to limit the amount which may be spent in maintenance allowances to £1,500,000 a year. We do not believe in maintenance allowances at all. If we did believe in maintenance allowances, such allowances would have to be universally applied. If you did not universally apply them, the only reason would be that you could not afford it. If you could not afford it, you should lay down a definite limit beyond which you should not go. The Financial Memorandum has been extremely vague on this point. There have been various estimates given. In the Second Reading debate the President of the Board of Education referred to this £8,000,000, and we feel that at this juncture we cannot go on giving blank cheques round the place either for maintenance allowances or for anything else. I am well aware that those sentiments do not make any appeal to hon. Members opposite. They are like a very young person or a child. They suddenly come into power and into a certain amount of money which they think is endless and can be spent like water. We, who will have to clean up the mess when they get out, which will be very shortly, do not wish the coffers to become empty before that time. For that reason, we wish to put a definite limit upon their wild extravagancies.
We do not say that £1,500,000 is an excessive sum; we say that it is more than we can possibly afford. But since we have passed the principle of maintenance allowances, we have put in this sum as the very outside amount which the country can possibly afford at this moment. A great deal more could be said on the subject, but we have a great deal to get through to-night. We have to prevent hon. Members opposite getting as far as they desire to go, but we do not want to do it at this stage. [Interruption.] 2045 I do not propose to keep the Committee any longer, in spite of the provocative hoots of hon. Members opposite.
§ Sir C. TREVELYAN
The object of this Amendment is to limit to £1,500,000 the increase in the Board's grants due to maintenance allowances. The effect of it would be not to cut down the total sums to be expended on maintenance allowances, but it would throw upon the local authorities a larger part of the burden than the Government propose to do. In the first year, maintenance grants are estimated to cost £3,750,000, and the Government's proposal is a 60 per cent. grant from the Board. The burden will fall upon the Exchequer to the extent of £2,250,000 and upon the local rates to the extent of £1,500,000. The proposal of the hon. Gentleman would put an additional charge upon the rates of £750,000. We are in the curious situation of having the position reversed. Hon. Members opposite have hitherto been complaining of the great burden upon the rates, and now they are trying to impose a new charge upon them. I am afraid that I cannot accept the Amendment.
Sir HILTON YOUNG
I do not quite follow the argument of the President of the Board of Education, and, indeed, I think he has failed to apprehend the actual consequences of this Amendment. He must remember that the Bill is not now in the form in which it was originally introduced and that certain improvements have been effected in his Measure. Amongst improvements which have been effected by the overwhelming weight of criticism brought to bear upon it, is a certain elasticity in the local authorities as to the amount of the maintenance grants they are going to recommend. The effect of the limitation imposed by this Amendment will not be that which he explained, but will be a, strong inducement to the local education authorities to exercise every device of administration which they have at their command in order to economise upon their maintenance grants. That is precisely what those of us who have some sense of responsibility towards our financial state desire to effect. It is well known, in the relations between the central Government and the local authorities, that financial connection between the two can be established for one or other of two objects, 2046 either to make use of the central contribution in such a way as to promote the maximum of expenditure by the local education authority, or in such a way as to produce only a limited expenditure. The former device is sometimes adopted when the country is feeling very wealthy and there is some service which it desires by all means to force down the throats of reluctant authorities.
We see, in regard to the present Amendment, the same attitude of the President of the Board of Education which we have so much regretted throughout, an attitude that he is forcing something upon reluctant education authorities. We, on the other hand, who are trying to maintain some sense of financial responsibility in relation to this Bill, do not desire to see that done. We desire to sec a strict limitation of the expenditure which is possible under the Bill. I ask the Committee to consider, whether, in the very wording of the Memorandum by which the Government introduced this Bill, they are not, as it were, put upon their notice; whether they are not warned to be cautious as to the financial results of the Bill, and whether they are not almost invited, if they desire to discharge their duties at all, to take every possible measure to impose some financial restriction. I think that the phrases in which the Board of Education proclaim that no reliance is to be placed upon their estimates with regard to the cost have almost become notorious—"It is not practicable to make a close estimate," "It is not unreasonable to assume this or that as regards the cost of maintenance grants," "The cost of maintenance allowances payable under the Bill is not susceptible of close ascertainment." That is to say, the President of the Board of Education has not the least idea what it is going to cost, and he does not very much care. It seems likely to cost, in the first half of a full year, £3,750,000.
That is the atmosphere with which we are contending on these benches and which we are trying to reduce to some definition. I know of no other way than by an Amendment such as this, in which the House of Commons can discharge its most appropriate function by saying that, looking at the whole state of the national finances, having considered all that can be said in favour of 2047 the expenditure of the Bill, it will exercise a permanent limit and impose an overriding maximum upon any expenditure, and leave it to the central authority and to the local authority to spend the money to the best advantage. To my mind, this Amendment is a, second best. I do not think that we can afford any of this expenditure. I do not think that we can afford any of it for the mistaken forms of extravagance which the Bill proposes. Still, if something has to be proposed, let us take every possibility of compromise which the right hon. Gentleman and the Government may introduce in order to bring an element of responsibility into the scheme of the Bill, which is necessary if the right hon. Gentleman will look at the general state of our finances during the year, and with regard to which, at the end of the year, there will inevitably be a big deficit.
§ Mr. HARRIS
We have had a very nice homily on economy. We always like to hear homilies from the right hon. Gentleman because I suppose we are all anxious to consider the interests of the taxpayers and the ratepayers. I have had very great respect for the right hon. Gentleman. I have looked upon him as a pundit of finance, as an ex-Financial Secretary to the Treasury but, apparently, in order to assert an excellent principle, he is going to support a thoroughly impracticable proposition. The whole basis of the Bill is a partnership between the local education authorities and the Government. Hard and heavy as the burden on the taxpayer is, it is even heavier on the ratepayer. If the right hon. Gentleman is anxious to protect the taxpayer, I am equally anxious to protect the ratepayer. We have already passed that part of the Clause which will impose responsibility for maintenance allowances for certain sections of the community in respect of certain children of a particular age.
§ Mr. HARRIS
The Clause will soon stand part of the Bill. The Amendment would help districts where there are very few children and would put the burden on those districts where the population is greatest. It will help places like Bournemouth, where there is a comparatively small child population, and throw the 2048 burden on the already over-rated, over-taxed, over-crowded districts of the North of England and the Midlands. It is not a practicable proposition and, although the right hon. Gentleman gives it his support in the name of economy, it will not work in practice.
§ Mr. C. WILLIAMS
The hon. Member would seem to suggest that the interests of the ratepayers come first and that the interests of the taxpayers in this matter should not have any consideration so far as this House is concerned. I am not interested in standing here to support the interests of the ratepayer as against the interests of the taxpayer; when it comes to a basic fact both suffer when the money has to be found, but I am concerned on this occasion in seeking to put some limit upon the extravagance of the Department. I do not wish it to be thought that in supporting the Amendment I am saying that the sum mentioned is the right sum—I think it is too big—but an idea has been put forward by many hon. Members, particularly Members of the Liberal party, that we should from time to time ration the money allowed to a Department and tell the Department to go on and do its best with the money. If circumstances warrant it, we can increase the amount.
I support the Amendment for the reason that we are definitely laying down a principle and telling the people of this country what is the limit beyond which the Department shall not go in its expenditure. If at the end of a few years the Department find that their hands are tied and their work is cramped, I do not mind them coming to the House and asking for more money. When we are faced to-day with very serious financial trouble and we are legislating in a hurry, as we are doing in this Bill—the right hon. Gentleman knows little about the Bill from the financial side, even for a Minister supporting the present Government—I should have thought that it was an occasion when the Liberal party would have come into the Lobby with us to check the Department in their Estimates. The Amendment is in the best interests of economy and in the best interests of education in the long run.
§ Lord E. PERCY
I am afraid the Minister gave way to the temptation to make a score. This Bill imposes no 2049 charge upon the rates, but merely authorises the Minister to put what charge upon the rates he likes by fixing the conditions of the maintenance allowances. If the ratepayer has to pay anything under this Bill it will have to be paid out in the measure of the regulations prescribed by the Minister. We say, by the only way open to us in this Amendment, that the Minister shall not prescribe regulations which will put upon the country a greater burden than
§ a sum of which £1,500,000 is 60 per cent. Quite frankly, we desire to tie the hands of the Minister with regard to the maintenance allowances. This is the only way to do it, and I hope the Committee will divide upon the matter and support the Amendment.
§ Question put, "That those words be there inserted."
§ The Committee divided: Ayes, 154; Noes, 273.2051
|Division No. 43.]||AYES||[5.38 p. m.|
|Acland-Troyte, Lieut-Colonel||Falle, Sir Bertram G.||Muirhead, A. J.|
|Ainsworth, Lieut.-Col. Charles||Ferguson, Sir John||Newton, Sir D. G. C. (Cambridge)|
|Albery, Irving James||Fermoy, Lord||Nicholson, O. (Westminster)|
|Allen, Sir J. Sandeman (Liverp'f., W.)||Fielden E. B.||Nicholson, Col. Rt. H n. W. G. (Ptrsf'ld)|
|Ashley, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Wilfrid W.||Fison, F. G. Clavering||Nield, Rt. Hon. Sir Herbert|
|Atholl, Duchess of||Ford, Sir P. J.||O'Neill, Sir H.|
|Baldwin, Rt. Hon. Stanley (Bewdley)||Fremantle, Lieut.-Colonel Francis E.||Ormsby-Gore, Rt. Hon. William|
|Balniel, Lord||Ganzonl, Sir John||Penny, Sir George|
|Beamish, Rear-Admiral T. P. H.||Gault, Lieut.-Col. Andrew Hamilton||Percy, Lord Eustace (Hastings)|
|Beaumont, M. W.||Gilmour, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir John||Peto, Sir Basil E. (Devon, Barnstaple)|
|Bellairs, Commander Carlyon||Glyn, Major R. G. C.||Power, Sir John Cecil|
|Berry, Sir George||Gower, Sir Robert||Ramsbotham, H.|
|Betterton, Sir Henry B.||Graham, Fergus (Cumberland, N.)||Rawson, Sir Cooper|
|Birchall, Major Sir John Dearman||Greaves-Lord, Sir Walter||Remer, John R.|
|Boothby, R. J. G.||Gretton, Colonel Rt. Hon. John||Rentoul, Sir Gervais S.|
|Bourne, Captain Robert Creft||Guinness, Rt. Hon. Walter E.||Reynolds, Col. Sir James|
|Briscoe, Richard George||Hacking, Rt. Hon. Douglas H.||Richardson, Sir P. W. (Sur'y, Ch't'sy)|
|Brown, Col. D. C. (N'th'I'd., Hexham)||Half, Lieut.-Col. Sir F. (Dulwich)||Rodd, Rt. Hon. Sir James Rennell|
|Brown, Brig.-Gen. H.C.(Berks,Newb'y)||Hammersley, S. S.||Ross, Major Ronald D.|
|Buchan, John||Hanbury, C.||Ruggles-Brise, Lieut.-Colonel E. A.|
|Bullock, Captain Malcolm||Hannon, Patrick Joseph Henry||Russell, Alexander West (Tynemouth)|
|Burton, Colonel H. W.||Hartington, Marquess of||Samuel, A. M. (Surrey, Farnham)|
|Butler, R. A.||Harvey, Major S. E. (Devon, Totnes)||Sandeman, Sir N. Stewart|
|Cadogan, Major Hon. Edward||Haslam, Henry C.||Savery, S. S.|
|Campbell, E. T.||Henderson, Capt. R. R. (Oxf'd,Henley)||Simms, Major-General J.|
|Carver, Major W. H.||Heneage, Lieut.-Colonel Arthur P.||Smith, Louis W. (Sheffield, Hallam)|
|Castle Stewart, Earl of||Hills, Major Rt. Hon. John Waller||Smith, R. W. (Aberd'n & Klnc'dine, C.)|
|Cayzer, Sir C (Chester, City)||Howard-Bury, Colonel C. K.||Smith-Carington, Neville W.|
|Cazalet, Captain Victor A.||Hudson, Capt. A. U. M. (Hackney, N)||Smithers, Waldron|
|Chadwick, Capt. Sir Robert Burton||Hunter-Weston, Lt.-Gen. Sir Aylmer||Somerville, A. A. (Windsor)|
|Chamberlain, Rt. Hon. Sir J. A. (Birm., W.)||Hurd, Percy A.||Southby, Commander A. R. J.|
|Chamberlain, Rt. Hon. N. (Edgbaston)||Knox, Sir Alfred||Stanley, Lord (Fylde)|
|Christie, J. A.||Lamb, Sir J. Q.||Stuart, Hon. J. (Moray and Nairn)|
|Churchill, Rt. Hon. Winston Spencer||Lambert, Rt. Hon. George (S. Molton)||Sueter, Rear-Admiral M. F.|
|Clydesdale, Marquess of||Law, Sir Alfred (Derby, High Peak)||Taylor, Vice-Admiral E. A.|
|Cobb, Sir Cyril||Leighton, Major B. E. P.||Thomas, Major L. B. (King's Norton)|
|Cockerill, Brig.-General Sir George||Lewis, Oswald (Colchester)||Thomson, Sir F.|
|Cohen, Major J. Brunel||Llewellin, Major J. J.||Tinne, J. A.|
|Colville, Major D. J.||Locker-Lampson, Rt. Hon. Godfrey||Vaughan-Morgan, Sir Kenyon|
|Courtauld, Major J. S.||Locker-Lampson, Com. O (Handsw'th)||Ward, Lieut.-Col. Sir A. Lambert|
|Courthope, Colonel Sir G. L.||Long, Major Hon. Eric||Wardlaw-Milne, J. S.|
|Crichton-Stuart, Lord C.||Lymington, Viscount||Warrender, Sir Victor|
|Crookshank, Capt. H. C.||Macdonald, Capt. P. D. (I. of W.)||Waterhouse, Captain Charles|
|Culverwell, C. T. (Bristol, West)||Maitland, A. (Kent, Faversham)||Williams, Charles (Devon, Torquay)|
|Dalkeith, Earl of||Makins, Brigadier-General E.||Windsor-Clive, Lieut.-Colonel George|
|Davies, Maj. Geo. F (Somerset, Yeovll)||Marjoribanks, Edward||Withers, Sir John James|
|Davison, Sir W. H. (Kensington, S.)||Mason, Colonel Glyn K.||Womersley, W. J.|
|Duckworth, G. A. V.||Meller, R. J.||Wright, Brig.-Gen. W. D. (Tavist'k)|
|Dugdale, Capt. T. L.||Mitchell. Sir W. Lane (Streatham)||Young, Rt. Hon. Sir Hilton|
|Edmondson, Major A. J.||Monsell, Eyres, Com. Rt. Hon. Sir B.|
|Elliot, Major Walter E.||Moore, Lieut.-Colonel T. C. R. (Ayr)||TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—|
|Everard, W. Lindsay||Morrison, W. S. (Glos., Cirencester)||Major Sir George Hennessy and Captain Wallace.|
|Adamson, Rt. Hon. W. (Fife, West)||Angell, Norman||Batey, Joseph|
|Adamson, W. M. (Staff., Cannock)||Arnott, John||Bellamy, Albert|
|Addison, Rt. Hon. Dr. Christopher||Aske, Sir Robert||Benn, Rt. Hon. Wedgwood|
|Altchison, Rt. Hon. Craigle M.||Attlee, Clement Richard||Bennett, Sir E. N. (Cardiff, Central)|
|Alexander, Rt. Hon. A. V. (Hillsbro')||Ayles, Walter||Bennett, William (Battersea, South)|
|Alpass, J. H.||Barnes, Alfred John||Benson, G.|
|Ammon, Charles George||Barr, James||Bentham, Dr. Ethel|
|Blindell, James||Johnston, Thomas||Potts, John S.|
|Bondfield, Rt. Hon. Margaret||Jones, F. Llewellyn-(Flint)||Price, M. P.|
|Bowen, J. W.||Jones, Henry Haydn (Merioneth)||Pybus, Percy John|
|Bowerman, Rt. Hon. Charles W.||Jones, Rt. Hon Leff (Camborne)||Quibell, D. J. K.|
|Broad, Francis Alfred||Jones, Morgan (Caerphilly)||Ramsay, T. B. Wilson|
|Brockway, A. Fenner||Jones, T. I. Mardy (Pontypridd)||Rathbone, Eleanor|
|Bromfield, William||Jowett, Rt. Hon. F. W.||Raynes, W. R.|
|Brooke, W.||Jowitt, Sir W. A. (Preston)||Richards, R.|
|Brothers, M.||Kedward, R. M. (Kent, Ashford)||Richardson, R. (Houghton-le-Spring)|
|Brown, C. W. E. (Notts. Mansfield)||Kelly, W. T.||Riley, Ben (Dewsbury)|
|Brown, Rt. Hon. J. (South Ayrshire)||Kennedy, Thomas||Romeril, H. G.|
|Brown, W. J. (Wolverhampton, West)||Kirkwood, D.||Rosbotham, D. S. T.|
|Burgess, F. G||Knight, Holford||Rowson, Guy|
|Buxton, C. R. (Yorks. W. R. Elland)||Lang, Gordon||Salter, Dr. Alfred|
|Calne, Derwent Hall||Lansbury, Rt. Hon. George||Sanders, W. S.|
|Cameron, A. G.||Lathan, G.||Sawyer, G. F.|
|Cape, Thomas||Law, A. (Rossendale)||Scrymgeour, E.|
|Carter, W. (St. Pancras, S.W.)||Lawrence, Susan||Scurr, John|
|Charleton, H. C.||Lawrie, Hugh Hartley (Stalybridge)||Sexton, James|
|Chater, Daniel||Lawson, John James||Shaw, Rt. Hon. Thomas (Preston)|
|Cluse, W. S.||Lawther, W. (Barnard Castle)||Shepherd, Arthur Lewis|
|Cocks, Frederick Seymour||Leach, W.||Sherwood, G. H.|
|Compton, Joseph||Lee, Frank (Derby, N.E.)||Shield, George William|
|Cove, William G.||Lee, Jessie (Lanark, Northern)||Shiels, Dr. Drummond|
|Cowan, D. M.||Lees, J.||Shillaker, J. F.|
|Daggar, George||Lewis, T. (Southampton)||Shinwell, E.|
|Dallas, George||Lindley, Fred W.||Short, Alfred (wednesbury)|
|Dalton, Hugh||Lloyd, C. Ellis||Simmons, C. J.|
|Davies, Rhys John (Westhoughton)||Logan, David Gilbert||Sinclair, Sir A. (Caithness)|
|Day, Harry||Longbottom, A. W.||Sitch, Charles H.|
|Denman, Hon. R. D||Lovat-Fraser, J. A.||Smith, Ben (Bermondsey, Rotherhithe)|
|Dudgeon, Major C. R.||Lowth, Thomas||Smith, Frank (Nuneaton)|
|Dukes, C.||Lunn, William||Smith, H. B. Lees (Keighley)|
|Duncan, Charles||Macdonald, Gordon (Ince)||Smith, Rennie (Penistone)|
|Ede, James Chuter||MacDonald, Rt. Hon. J. R. (Seaham)||Smith, Tom (Pontefract)|
|Edmunds, J. E.||MacDonald, Malcolm (Bassetlaw)||Smith, W. R. (Norwich)|
|Edwards, C. (Monmouth, Bedwellty)||McEntee, V. L.||Snell, Harry|
|Edwards, E. (Morpeth)||McGovern, J. (Glasgow, Shettleston)||Snowden, Rt. Hon. Philip|
|Egan, W. H.||McKinley, A.||Snowden, Thomas (Accrington)|
|Elmley, Viscount||MacLaren, Andrew||Sorensen, R.|
|England, Colonel A.||Maclean, Sir Donald (Cornwall. N.)||Stamford, Thomas W.|
|Evans, Capt. Ernest (Welsh Univer.)||Maclean, Nell (Glasgow, Govan)||Stephen, Campbell|
|Foot, Isaac,||MacNeill-Weir, L.||Stewart, J. (St. Rollox)|
|Forgan, Dr. Robert||McShane, John James||Strachey, E. J. St. Loe|
|Freeman, Peter||Malone, C. L'Estrange (N'thampton)||Sutton, J. E.|
|Gardner, B. W. (West Ham, Upton)||Mander, Geoffrey le M.||Taylor, R. A. (Lincoln)|
|George, Major G. Lloyd (Pembroke)||Mansfield, W.||Taylor, W. B. (Norfolk, S.W.)|
|George, Megan Lloyd (Anglesea)||Marcus, M.||Thomas, Rt. Hon. J. H. (Derby)|
|Gibbins, Joseph||Markham, S. F.||Thorne, W. (West Ham. Plaistow)|
|Gibson, H. M. (Lancs. Mossley)||Marley, J.||Thurtle, Ernest|
|Gill, T. H.||Marshall, Fred||Tillett, Ben|
|Glassey, A. E.||Mathers, George||Tinker, John Joseph|
|Gossling, A. G.||Matters, L. W.||Tout, W. J.|
|Gould, F.||Manton, James||Townend, A. E.|
|Graham, Rt. Hon. Wm. (Edin., Cent.)||Messer, Fred||Trevelyan, Rt. Hon. Sir Charles|
|Gray, Milner||Middleton, G.||Vaughan, D. J.|
|Greenwood Rt. Hon. A. (Colne).||Milner, Major J.||Viant, S. P.|
|Grenfell, D. R. (Glamorgan)||Montague, Frederick||Walkden, A. G.|
|Griffith, F. Kingsley (Middlesbro'W.)||Morgan, Dr. H. B.||Walker, J.|
|Griffiths, T. (Monmouth, Pontypool)||Morley, Ralph||Wallace, H. W.|
|Groves, Thomas E.||Morris, Rhys Hopkins||Wallhead, Richard C.|
|Grundy, Thomas W.||Morris-Jones, Dr. J. H. (Denbigh)||Walters, Rt. Hon, Sir J. Tudor|
|Hall, G. H. (Merthyr Tydvil)||Morrison, Herbert (Hackney, South)||Watkins, F. C.|
|Hall, Capt. W. G. (Portsmouth, C.)||Morrison, Robert C. (Tottenham, N.)||Watson, W. M. (Dunfermline)|
|Hamilton, Mary Agnes (Blackburn)||Mort, D. L.||Wellock, Wilfred|
|Hamilton, Sir R. (Orkney & Zetland)||Moses, J. J. H.||Welsh, James (Paisley)|
|Harris. Percy A.||Mosley, Lady C. (Stoke-on-Trent)||West, F. R.|
|Hartshorn, Rt. Hon. Vernon||Muff, G.||Westward, Joseph|
|Hastings, Dr. Somerville||Muggeridge, H. T.||White, H. G.|
|Haycock, A. W.||Naylor, T. E.||Whiteley, Wilfrid (Birm., Ladywood)|
|Hayday, Arthur||Newman, Sir R. H. S. D. L. (Exeter)||Whiteley, William (Blaydon)|
|Hayes, John Henry||Noel Baker, P. J.||Wilkinson, Ellen C.|
|Henderson, Right Hon. A. (Burnley)||Noel-Buxton, Baroness (Norfolk, N.)||Williams, David (Swansea, East)|
|Henderson, W. W. (Middx., Enfield)||Oldfield, J. R.||Williams, Dr. J. H. (Llanelly)|
|Herriotts, J.||Oliver, George Harold (Ilkeston)||Williams, T. (York, Don Valley)|
|Hirst, G. H. (York W. R. Wentworth)||Oliver, P. M. (Man., Blackley)||Wilson, C. H. (Sheffield, Attercliffs)|
|Hirst, W. (Bradford, South)||Owen, Major G. (Carnarvon)||Wilson, J. (Oldham)|
|Hoffman. P. C.||Owen, H. F. (Hereford)||Wilson, R. J. (Jarrow)|
|Hopkin, Daniel||Palin, John Henry.||Winterton, G. E.(Leicester.Loughb'gh)|
|Hore-Belisha, Leslie.||Paling, Wilfrid||Wise, E. F.|
|Horrabln, J. F.||Perry, S. F.||Wood, Major McKenzie (Banff)|
|Hudson, James H. (Huddersfield)||Pethick-Lawrence, F. W.||Wright, W. (Rutherglen)|
|Isaacs, George||Phillips, Dr. marlon|
|Jenkins, W. (Glamorgan, Neath)||Picton-Turbervill, Edith||TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—|
|John, William (Rhondda, West)||Pole, Major D. G.||Mr. Allen Parkinson and Mr. T. Henderson.|
§ Question proposed, "That the Clause, as amended, stand part of the Bill."
§ Mr. CADOGAN
One of the peculiar features of our discussions in Committee is that, however perfunctory the debate on a particular Amendment may have been, the Government maintain that it has received adequate treatment, and that, however discursive it may have been, the Opposition protests that it has not had a fair deal. I am convinced, however, that no impartial critic of our proceedings in Committee on this Clause could possibly say that the Opposition has indulged in dilatory or obstructive tactics. We have moved our Amendments in all sincerity, and we claim that if they had been accepted by the Government they would have gone far to obviate the great difficulties which will undoubtedly confront education authorities when this Clause comes into operation. I share the experience of other hon. Members on this side of the Committee who have moved Amendments to this Clause in having been grossly misrepresented outside. I have been accused of being opposed to the principle of raising the school age and to maintenance grants. I have been accused of denying to children born in less fortunate circumstances the benefits of advanced education.
Our critics totally misunderstand the motives which actuate our opposition to this Clause. We oppose it upon economic and educational grounds. We do not oppose it because it means an expenditure of anything up to £15,000,000 when the country should be saving that sum, although that is a consideration, especially when we consider that the annual expenditure of the country is £870,000,000. at a time of trade depression and financial stringency; we should be opposed to the expenditure under this Clause even if the country were in affluent circumstances, because we maintain that you will not get value for the money spent: the accommodation is not ready, nor are the teachers. In taking up this attitude, we knew that we ran the risk of misrepresentation, intentional or otherwise. We are obviously exposed to the taunt that we have ungenerously withheld from the children of the working-classes the benefits of education which we have ourselves received, but the fact that certain individuals are able to 2054 send their children to public schools does not seem to me to be a sound argument for prolonging the school-leaving age before the schools are ready for such a reform. What solace can it he to a man who is compelled to keep his son marking time in an over-crowded school, instructed by an elderly female? What solace can it be to him to know that the President of the Board of Education had much better schooling than that?
I received last week a copy of a journal which I understand is inspired by the National Union of Teachers, and I observe that in the leading article it is said that hon. Members who have moved Amendments to Clause 1 were not aware of the implications of their own Amendments. I am quite sure that the section of the National Union of Teachers which is supporting the President of the Board of Education in his breathless haste to pass this Measure cannot be aware of the dangers of hasty legislation. I am glad, however, that there are other Sections of the community who are not only aware of the dangers of this legislation but have registered their dissent in no unmeasured terms. I have no doubt that this Bill was well aired during the recent by-elections at Shipley and Renfrew, and I hope that hon. Members opposite and those who support the President of the Board of Education are gratified with the results of those two campaigns.
I should be out of order in discussing the question of the date, but I do not think I shall be out of order in emphasising the point that the postponement of the date makes no difference to our contention that the country is not prepared for this reform. The right hon. Gentleman informed the Committee that 140 local education authorities out of 317 had expressed themselves as being substantially, or very nearly, prepared. The hon. Member for Perth and Kinross (Duchess of Atholl), in a very able and convincing analysis, reduced the figure of 140 to 89, and in these 89 authorities there are no rural authorities and only one or two of the larger urban authorities. Manchester and the West Riding have expressed the opinion that it will be necessary to have six years, and no doubt other education authorities are in the same predicament. We are quite unprepared as regards the training of teachers. We shall not have a sufficient supply of duly qualified male teachers, 2055 and I emphasise the word "male," because we do not want our youths of between 14 and 15 years of age instructed by young married teachers or elderly women of between 60 and 70 years of age.
The question of the supply of teachers is further complicated by the point made by the hon. Member for West Fulham (Sir C. Cobb). When you are spending an enormous amount of money on a large supply of extra teachers for the bulge years it must be remembered that, when the de-bulging, if I may use such an atrocious expression, process takes place, you will have a lot of teachers unemployed on your hands. That is an extra reason for postponing this Bill until 1936. There is also a further point in regard to the question of our unpreparedness. Unless you take much more time for reorganisation, you will throw out of gear that immensely valuable system of continuation and technical schools, to say nothing of the existing system of apprenticeship. I hope the President will pay some attention to these points.
There is a further consideration which has not yet been raised. You are going to increase the school population by some 400,000 and 500,000 children between the ages of 14 and 15. It is a dangerous age, and nothing has been done to increase the recreative facilities of the schools, which I know are hopelessly inadequate even at the present time. So much for our unpreparedness for the great day.
Let me deal now with Sub-section (2) of this Clause. Here again I have been misrepresented. I do not deny that under the provisions of the Bill maintenance allowances may be necessary, but it never occurred to me before I saw the Bill in print that we were not going to allow local education authorities some discretion in this matter. It is true that the President of the Board of Education has made some grudging concessions. The form of the Schedule is less rigid and local education authorities have some power of investigating the accuracy of the statements of the applicants. But none of the concessions the right hon. Gentleman has made, and none that he contemplates making, meet our objection to the parent being entitled to claim 2056 maintenance allowance. We say that unless a far greater measure of discretion is allowed to the local education authorities, it is certain that the maintenance allowances will be faultily and extravagantly administered. I cannot understand this invidious mistrust of the local education authorities. With regard to the objections which have been raised by hon. Members opposite on the subject of the investigation of claims for allowances, I am very glad that the Minister now gives some indications of reasonableness in regard to that matter. There are no grounds for such complaints as have been made in this respect, and I think it very remarkable that those complaints should come from hon. Members who are engaged in trying to set up a Socialist state, because a Socialist state must of course be founded upon a huge inspectorate with endless inquisitions into our private affairs. Hon. Members opposite must accustom themselves to inquisitions, if they want to see Socialism in our time.
A question of that character does not come within the range of the Clause which is before the Committee.
§ Mr. CADOGAN
I was wondering, Mr. Dunnico, how long your patience would allow me to continue on that matter, but may I say with apologies that the point has been raised frequently by hon. Members opposite who object to these investigations.
The DEPUTY - CHAIRMAN
Hon. Members in the course of previous discussions may have objected to such forms of inquiry and investigation as are involved in Amendments proposed to this Bill, but the hon. Member was going into the whole question of Socialism.
§ Mr. CADOGAN
I bow to your Ruling, and I conclude by submitting to the Committee that the Amendments which we have moved to Clause 1 have been Amendments of substance, and Amendments which would have improved this Bill as far as it is possible to improve such a bad Bill. I earnestly hope that the Committee will vote against the Clause standing part of the Bill.
§ Commander SOUTHBY
I think hon. Members opposite will agree that the 2057 back bench Members on this side of the Committee have not unduly protracted these proceedings, and it is only because I do not wish to give a silent vote on the Question, "That Clause 1 stand part of the Bill," that I ask the indulgence of the Committee to speak briefly upon it. It has been frequently said during our deliberations that now is the time for economy, and I may be pardoned for using that phrase once again. It is at a time when the paramount need is for economy that the proposals contained in Clause 1 have been introduced and those proposals, I contend, are not only inopportune, but are unpopular throughout the country, and are particularly unpopular with the very persons whom hon. Members opposite seek to benefit by this Bill. I am as anxious as any hon. Member opposite to have education of the most advanced type made available to every child in the country whatever his or her walk in life may be. I have no wish to deny the possibility of the most advanced forms of education to any child who is obviously fitted by attainments and capabilities to benefit by such education. But that is a very different thing from the proposal in Clause 1 which seeks to compel every child, whatever the child's special abilities may be, to remain at school imbibing what is vaguely called education for another year.
Reference has already been made on this side to the technical schools, and it cannot be denied that this Clause will seriously affect the technical education of children. Hon. members opposite know perhaps, almost better than we on this side, how essential it is that any form of technical education for children should begin as early as possible, and certainly at the age of 14. There may be two opinions as to whether the proposals in this Clause represent an attempt to bribe the electorate or not, but there can be no two opinions on the question that they represent compulsion of the parents and coercion of the local authorities. They infringe the right of parents to have some say in the future of their children, and I believe that they will be bitterly resented by parents throughout the country. I can quite understand the objection of hon. Members opposite to any form of inquisition as regards maintenance grants. I can concede that, in certain 2058 circumstances, maintenance grants ought to be paid, where there is real need, but if you are going to pay maintenance grants, whether there is real need or not, you must have inquisitorial methods in some form. Otherwise you are faced with the prospect of paying away the taxpayers' and ratepayers' money in cases where it should not be so paid. The very fact that you must have some form of inquisition will rouse great resentment among the people of this country who strongly object to having their private affairs inquired into in the way that will become necessary should this Bill pass into law.
It is true that all compulsion upon a prospective recipient of this benefit to state a case which will entitle him to the benefit has been removed. Once again, the local authority is to have the whole responsibility for deciding in each instance whether it is a case in which benefit should be paid or not. But, at any rate, the inquisitorial results of the Bill are bound to be irksome to the people whom it is intended to benefit. Under the Clause as it stands, it would be possible for the following situation to arise. Two men might be living in cottages side by side, each drawing £3 a week in wages and each having two children at school. If one of these men by his own thrift or by some good fortune had been able to purchase his cottage, then, under Schedule A, the value of that cottage would be added to his income, and he would be debarred from receiving the grant of 5s. weekly in respect of his children, whereas his next door neighbour because he rented his cottage instead of owning it would receive that benefit although in every other respect his circumstances were exactly the same. Surely, anomalies like that cannot be defended by the President of the Board of Education. Yet this Clause will create anomalies of that character.
Our Amendments have all been serious Amendments. They have not been brought forward for the purpose of obstructing discussion or wasting time. I have sat through the Committee's deliberations and I have regretted that the right hon. Gentleman has not seen his way to meet us more than he has done. I believe this to be a bad Bill, an unpopular Bill, and in the present state 2059 of the country's finance, a wholly unjustifiable Bill, but it might have been considerably improved had the Minister listened to some of the arguments addressed to him from this side, and adopted some of the suggestions which we submitted. It has been pointed out to him that the effect of this 5s. flat rate in connection with maintenance grants will inevitably be to raise the rate paid in respect of secondary school children, and nobody has ever suggested that the present rate in that case is not perfectly reasonable and adequate. That refusal to accept Amendments, which might have obviated some of these anomalies, shows on the part of the Minister a lack of the spirit of co-operation, but I reiterate that hon. Members opposite and especially right hon. Gentlemen on the Front Bench will find when the time comes and the time may come at no very distant date, that this will be a very difficult Bill for them to justify to the people of the country.
§ Major LLEWELLIN
Before parting with this Clause there are two questions which we ought to ask ourselves. The first is, what does it do? The second is, what will it cost? The President of the Board of Education has been very vague as to what the Bill will cost. I think he has used the expression "£8,000,000 or whatever it is." It is quite clear, however, that the Measure is going to add a considerable burden both to the rates and taxes of this country. Even in the case of a comparatively small county like Dorset it is going to impose an extra burden, apart from maintenance allowances, of some £40,000, and £22,000 of that amount will have to be borne by the rates of the county, excluding the two large towns of Poole and Weymouth. The additional burden to which I refer only applies to the area of the county education authority. Is this a time at which to embark upon such new expenditure? We hear a lot of talk from Members of the Liberal party about economy, but it seems only to be talk, because their desire for economy is not shown by their votes in the House of Commons, although some of the schemes in their latest book may have been turned down by the Chancellor of the Exchequer on financial grounds, and, the more money they vote for other objects, the less there will be 2060 for those schemes which they are said to have so dearly at heart.
Even if it were to be conceded that this expenditure is necessary at this time, what are we going to get for it? We are going to have a large number of additional children crammed into schools which are not ready for them, without an adequate supply of teachers, and without any curriculum having been arranged for the extra year. That involves not only a waste of money but also a waste of the time of those children. It will give them before they leave school a disrespect for education and an idea of not going on to continuation classes or to technical schools, because they will feel that their last year at school has been a wasted year. Again, as my hon. Friend the Member for Finchley (Mr. Cadogan) pointed out, there is no provision at all for what I regard as absolutely essential for growing boys between 14 and 15, namely some increased playing-field accommodation. It seems to me to be just as important that there should be proper facilities for recreation around the schools, as that there should be facilities for education in the schools. The main object of the schools is not so much the actual teaching of children, as the building up of character. That is why I do not wish to see classes so large that the teacher cannot exercise a real influence in building up the character of the children.
On the question of maintenance allowances, I would support allowances for those who are in absolute need of them in order that they may be able to provide their children with schooling, and of course there has been expenditure of this sort under previous Acts of Parliament. But I oppose the wholesale giving of maintenance allowances as proposed in the Clause. The first thing you have to maintain and build up in this country is the old idea of the family life. [Laughter.] An hon. Member opposite may laugh. If he prefers everything to be done by the State, and children more or less to be taken from their parents from the moment they are born, and put into some sort of seminary, quite away from their parents, then we are simply miles apart in the way in which we look at the family life of this country.
It seems to me that what you ought to build on is the family life, and you have 2061 to do that by building up respect in these families, as we all know, or at least those of us who are fortunate in our parents and have had parents who sacrificed something for us in our earlier years. Therefore, we feel an obligation to them for the rest of our lives, and it seems to me—hon. Members opposite may agree or disagree, but in truth I care not—that what we do not want to undermine is the responsibility of parents for looking after the welfare of their children until such time as they are able to take their place and make their own way in the world. It is because this universal scheme of maintenance allowances knocks out the very bottom of that principle that I object to those allowances.
I believe very strongly in what I am saying, and I say it outside this House just as much as I say it here. What we want to build up in this country more and more is the individual respect of the people, and to get them less and less to have to lean on some outside force in the State. After all, it is our old individual pride that has built up this country into the position that we now hold, and if we begin to go away, as we are doing by these universal maintenance allowances, from the idea of the responsibility of the individual, the responsibilty at any rate of the individual father and mother for the care and maintenance of their children, then we are doing something that is bad for this country and for the future generations of our race. That is why I oppose this Clause.
§ Mr. HORE-BELISHA
I have listened with some surprise to the very able speeches that have just been delivered from the Conservative Benches. I thought they appeared here to-day in the character of prosecutors, that they were going to condemn this Bill outright, but instead of that the burden of their speeches has been to explain away what has been said on the Second Reading and in the course of a great many Amendments. That applies particularly to the hon. and gallant Member for Uxbridge (Major Llewellin), who has just sat down. He moved a whole series of Amendments which would, as I previously pointed out to him, have been of great benefit to the legal profession, which he adorns, but of very small benefit to the school children, whom it is the object of this Bill to benefit.
§ Major LLEWELLIN
The hon. Member is referring to the Clause, as I understand, which gives the claimant to a maintenance allowance a right to appeal to a court of summary jurisdiction. It is probably an appeal for 5s., or £1 at the most, and that is not going to benefit any member of the legal profession to any vast extent. If it is only a claim for 5s., you cannot at any rate brief counsel to appear for you to get 5s. back.
§ Mr. HORE-BELISHA
I am much obliged to my hon. and gallant Friend, but the Amendments to which I have been referring appear on the Paper to-day, and one of them provides that if any person entitled to maintenance allowance wilfully omits to inform the local education authority that his total income has increased beyond the limit entitling him to an allowance, he shall be further penalised, and the other one is that in addition to either such imprisonment or fine as is provided in the Bill, he may be ordered to pay such sum as represents the maintenance allowance that he has received. The only omission that he has made in this very comprehensive series of Amendments is the proposal that each claimant for maintenance allowance should appear to claim the allowance accompanied on either side by two policemen. If he had done that, he would have very adequately completed his series of proposals. However, I congratulate him on the very able way in which he has argued them.
What I am concerned to paint out is that every hon. Member who has spoken from the Conservative benches to-day has complained that he has been misrepresented in the country. At least, the hon. Member for Finchley (Mr. Cadogan) particularly complained of that, and the hon. and gallant Member for Epsom (Commander Southby) made his speech in order to prevent any criticism that might be made upon him in that regard.
§ Commander SOUTHBY
I made no complaint of misrepresentation, and the hon. Member is perhaps doing me an injustice in suggesting that I made a speech for fear that I should be misrepresented.
§ Mr. HORE-BELISHA
The hon. and gallant Member has misunderstood me. 2063 I said that the hon. Member for Finchley complained that he had been misrepresented, but the hon. and gallant Member for Epsom is most anxious that he should not be misrepresented and is particularly wishful that a silent vote of his might not be misinterpreted. I do not think there is any controversy between us, because—
§ Commander SOUTHBY
Surely any hon. Member may make a speech rather than give a silent vote, without being accused of having done it to prevent some problematical misrepresentation.
§ Mr. HORE-BELISHA
Really, my hon. and gallant Friend has no serious cause of complaint. I was not criticising him. I was saying that he makes a speech in order to be completely understood. I am very much surprised at this attitude of my hon. Friends in the Conservative party. They introduced a Measure when they were in office to give equality of franchise, and they proclaimed through a thousand trumpets that at last we had approximated to the ideal of equality of opportunity. The Prime Minister of that day became very exuberant about that Measure, and used some very remarkable language, which I took the trouble to note down this morning. The right hon. Gentleman the Member for Bewdley (Mr. S. Baldwin) said:Once this Bill is law, the last fraction of truth about inequality will have gone, and gone for ever. It will never again be possible to blame the sovereign State for any position of inequality.Is that what my hon. Friends are saying on this Bill? When parents come with the charter offered to them by the right hon. Member for Bewdley and say that it is worthless to them unless he gives them the power to exercise the vote intelligently, my hon. Friends there will say, "Ah, yes, but that kind of equality costs money." To give a vote costs nothing. They will dish votes out as if they were potatoes to every section of the community, but when the same people come to this House and ask for the power to exercise their votes intelligently, my hon. Friends here resist it because it is expensive. I think that is a very serious paradox for the Conservative party, and it is very unbecoming, for a party which claims credit for enfranchising the whole population and free- 2064 ing them, to come to this House and resist a miserable little Bill like this—[HON. MEMBERS: "Hear, hear!"] I am glad to hear the applause of my hon. Friends—which, far from bridging the gap between one system of education and another, only gives to the working classes a chance of being educated up to the age of 15. That is the Bill that my hon. Friends are resisting, and I say that it is miserable and pettifogging.
§ Mr. CADOGAN
I was resisting the expenditure not because of the expenditure but because we are not getting value for it.
§ Mr. HORE-BELISHA
My hon. Friend is most ingenious. I listened with great attention and a great deal of alarm to the speech delivered by the Noble Lord on the Second Reading. That is not his attitude. His attitude is that the proper place for the child of 15 is the factory, and that you have no right in principle to force education upon him or to give it the advantages which this Bill, however meagrely, offers to the child. I say to my hon. Friends above the Gangway that what makes the division between class and class in this country is not money, but education. Any difference that exists between one man's fortune and that of another can be redressed—he may win the Irish sweepstake—but any difference that exists on the basis of education can never be made good to those suffering that disadvantage. I should have thought the Conservative party, which is always in fear of revolution, would have regarded this Measure as a guarantee against revolution.
Why should they deny to the poorer children of this country an advantage which they themselves possess? The whole distinction between class and class reposes on that. You have two systems of education in this country which you must at some date or other assimilate. You have a public school education, and you have a private school education, and that produces a difference of outlook, a difference of thought, a difference of expression. It almost makes in this State two nations, and we cannot afford to go on like that. The great Disraeli would have turned in his grave if he had listened to the speech of the Noble Lord who represents the Conservative 2065 party so forcibly and with such reaction in these debates. The great Disraeli saw a little farther, I am glad to think, than does the Noble Lord.
Then there is the other proposal in this Bill, namely, the proposal for maintenance allowances. Why the whole public school system, which was founded for the poor, is based on the principle of maintenance allowances. The endowments of the great public schools are maintenance allowances, and far more adequate maintenance allowances than are proposed in this Bill. They give the child lodging and food, and in some cases they were intended to give them clothing. That is the principle of the public school endowments, and nobody who has read the history of our public schools will dispute for a moment What I say.
In spite of that, I do not think that this is the proper way to give maintenance allowances. They have nothing to do with an Education Bill. These maintenance allowances are to feed and clothe children, which has nothing to do with education, and it ought to be done in a different way. What are the weaknesses of the scheme? The first is this: Does anybody pretend that the maximum will remain at 5s.? It cannot be suggested that 5s. is enough on which to keep a child. Nobody, whether he supports or opposes maintenance allowances, will say that. At every election we shall be asked, "Are you prepared to increase that allowance?" There is another weakness, and that is that we shall be asked why maintenance allowance is given between the ages of 14 and 15 only. Why is it not given at the age of 13, or at the age of 12? We shall be asked to make this into a complete system for the endowment of children. That may or may not be a good thing, but an Education Bill is not the Bill in which to do it.
Is it realised how much this adds to the chaos of our present social system? We have a pensions warrant administered by the Ministry of Pensions, under which a child obtains 10s. a week. We have an Unemployment Insurance Act under which a child gets 2s. a week. We have a Contributory Pensions Act, under which a widow receives is. 6d. in respect of her child, or an orphan receives a like sum. We have several Acts on 2066 the Statute Book by which maintenance allowances are given. They are not given for the purposes merely of education, but for the purposes of sustenance. It has been the tradition of this country, for good or for evil, since 1908, that we should insure a workman against every risk of his life. That is an old Liberal principle, and it has been adopted by other parties. I am not entering into the controversy whether the insurance should be contributed or not, but we have provided by legislation against every abnormal risk of life, against old age and death, against unemployment and various other contingencies, and the proper place for a maintenance allowance is in an insurance Bill.
We could carry it much further if we did that. It would cost next to nothing to insure against the £5,000,000 which is being provided in this Bill; it would cost about one halfpenny a week for each contributor. Under an insurance scheme, we could give something much better. Do the Socialist party believe in this Bill and this form of maintenance allowance? It is foisting upon education the sins of industry. Wages are not big enough, and we are trying to save them out of the Vote for education. Do you realise that you are mobilising against education by this Measure many of the people who have hitherto been in favour of it? My right hon. Friend the Member for Spen Valley (Sir J. Simon), who has spent a political lifetime in advocating equality of educational opportunity, is appalled at the cost, and is actually opposing the Bill; he is not appalled at the cost of education, but at the cost of putting upon education something that does not legitimately belong to it, but belongs to a system of family allowances.
My hon. Friends opposite are not new to this question. They have discussed it at the Trade Union Congress and the Labour Party Conference, and to what conclusion did they come? They rejected these cash payments, as they called them, on two grounds. I ask leave to read two very instructive paragraphs from the report which they adopted. The first is:Nor do we wish to argue at length the question of the possible effects which a system of cash payments might have upon wage negotiations and collective agreements, 2067 though we are quite satisfied that such a system would effect detrimentally negotiations regarding wage fixing.They are quite candid about it. They say that if cash payments are distributed, it will affect the wages of the workers, and that they are taken into account when trade union leaders go to employers and ask for a rise in wages.
§ Mr. MAXTON
Was not that decision in reference to a somewhat larger proposal than the one before us? Is it not a fact that both the Trade Union Congress and the Labour party carried practically unanimous votes in support of this particular maintenance grant?
§ Mr. HORE-BELISHA
I am talking about the minority report on family allowances. I do not dispute that the Labour party are in favour of this Bill. That is proved by the fact that the Bill is going to be carried. I am talking about the principle of cash allowances and the possible effect that they will have upon the economic system.
§ Mr. MAXTON
The hon. Gentleman must recognise that there is a substantial difference between a very limited Measure of this description and the very wide scheme of family allowances that was proposed by me and my hon. Friends. The argument that he is now using would apply just as forcibly to the widows' and orphans' pensions which he himself has praised.
§ Mr. HORE-BELISHA
There is really no difference between my hon. Friend and myself, because when I was arguing just now that this would never stay here, and that it was not logical to leave it here, my hon. Friend applauded me. I am dealing with the whole matter on that basis, and saying that this minority report thought a system of cash payments undesirable. The first ground on which they thought that, was that it would prejudice trade union leaders when they came to negotiate wages, and Mr. Cramp made an instructive speech on that point. The second ground, after determining the sum required, was:If such a sum were realised for this purpose, it is obvious to us that nothing would be available for developing the national health, education and pension services.2068 They say the same thing many times, and sometimes in a stronger form. They conclude:We believe, in short, that the development of the national health, education and other social services is so vital in the interests of the workers' children, that all the funds available for such social purposes should be spent in extending these services, until they are completed, rather than in paying out cash allowances.That is the considered view of the minority report. It contains an important principle, namely, that we have to choose whether we are going to develop the social services or pay cash allowances for children. This is the first step towards family allowances, and this is the first time in this country that we have made a cash payment to the working man. My hon. Friend the Member for Bridgeton (Mr. Maxton) asked me just now about pensions. Pensions are contributory for the most part, or they are deferred pay. There is no provision in this country by which hitherto we have paid a man earning wages an additional sum of money, such as is contained in this Bill, and to that extent the proposal is new.
§ Mr. MAXTON
Surely we are paying for secondary education quite regularly, and we give grants to employed men for a variety of things. I want again to insist that there is a tremendous difference. The proposal that was being discussed by the Trade Union Congress was one that amounted to an expenditure of £100,000,000. The Congress say that £100,000,000 is a tremendous sum of money, and that the spending of it at this juncture would cripple the development of every other social service. I do not accept that, but that is what they say. Surely the same argument cannot be applied to the £6,000,000 odd which is being provided in this Bill?
§ Mr. HORE-BELISHA
The hon. Gentleman has not rebutted my points at all. There is a difference between paying a selected child a sum of money under an Education Bill, and making it imperative to pay to every child and to every working man below a certain wage limit. That is quite a different proposal. The hon. Gentleman's second point was that those who made this report were appalled by the vastness of the amount, and therefore laid down the principle which they would not other- 2069 wise have laid down. I will read another passage. The hon. Member used the figure of £6,000,000:The crucial question to us is therefore not whether to pay cash allowances would be an ideally sound policy, but whether, given a certain sum at the present time, be it £10,000,000 or £50,000,000, to disburse in cash payments would be a better, more effective, more economical and socially more advantageous policy than to devote it to developing our social services. The question, in our view, admits of but one answer. Such funds as are available would achieve far more valuable results in the form of improved health, education and other conditions of well-being for the children, if expenditure in developing the social services than if spent in cash payments.Even if it is £10,000,000, they say, they prefer the system of extending education. So do I, and I do not think that it is fair—and this is my point—to burden education with maintenance allowances which are for the purpose of giving sustenance and clothing to a child. That is a subject which must be considered on its own merits. If the House of Commons wishes to debate family allowances, let us debate them, and if it wishes to have them, let us take that decision, but once we have placed these enormous burdens upon education, we have done education no good. We have held it up for, perhaps, generations. During the time that the Mond-Turner Report was under discussion, many people were of opinion that it would be advisable to raise the age to 16. How many years would it be now for a child to be educated up to 16 under a Bill of this kind?
We shall not have another Bill of this kind for a long time, whereas, if this maintenance allowance had been left out, and had been provided for under the existing insurance system, we could have had a Bill to raise the school age to 16 or even more. As I believe in education, I think that it is a mistake for the Government to pursue this course. The Bill will not come into operation until September, 1932, if a subsequent Amendment be carried. Between this date and that, the right hon. Gentleman has the opportunity of considering the whole principle of family allowances, and to make provision for them if the House of Commons so desires. He has the opportunity of which the Government are availing themselves, and have been 2070 a great deal of time about it, of investigating the possibility of co-ordinating insurance services. All these things can be done between now and September, 1932, and I hope that it will be on a more satisfactory basis than it is in the present Bill.
A mother has a right to have her children not only educated, but properly fed. Children are an asset to the nation, and. if industry cannot do it, if we are faced with the deplorable fact that the majority of the working class population are getting less than £3 a week, we must give them a proper opportunity in life by one method or another. I believe that the proper way is by insurance without unduly burdening anybody else. I hope that I have made it clear that while I welcome this Bill, because it proposes to do for the nation what Plymouth did for itself a very long time ago, and while I welcome the raising of the age to 15, I regret that it does not go further and takes no step towards assimilating the two systems of education which now exist in the country, into one which shall be the best and open to all. I regret that the Bill contains this proposal for maintenance allowances in a form in which it can never finally be left, although I hope that maintenance allowances in some more appropriate form will eventually be carried.
§ Sir C. TREVELYAN
I do not want to make a Second Reading speech, and I have already covered many times most of the ground over which we have travelled this afternoon. I have listened very carefully for any new points of view, and I cannot say that I have heard very much that is new. The hon. Member for Finchley complained that he was misunderstood, but I could not quite make out why. He is opposed to the Bill, but it seems that he was misunderstood. [Interruption.] It may he that his opposition is limited. For one reason or another he and his party are decidedly against the two things which this Bill proposes to do, to raise the school age—
§ Sir C. TREVELYAN
Yes, compulsorily. [Interruption]. All the Conservative party are not against the compulsory raising of the school age, although the Noble Lord and some of his 2071 supporters may be. It is a new thing in the Conservative party to find opposition to compulsion as such, and I very much doubt whether the Noble Lord is completely in touch with his party. That may have something to do with the misunderstanding which exists. The hon. Member for Finchley (Mr. Cadogan) did say two new things about unpreparedness. He said this new proposal would throw out of gear the continuation classes and technical schools. I do not know why, because if the pupils who go to continuation schools are better grounded in the elementary schools or senior schools from which they come, they will be able to profit more from the technical education which they get at later stages. Then he referred to recreative facilities, and asked whether, as a part of our preparedness, we were thinking about more playgrounds, and so on. Certainly we are, and if he had opened as many schools as I have had the pleasure of opening in the last year, he would have known that in every case where it was a senior school, and in most cases where an elementary school was opened, a playground is attached. A good many local authorities make it a rule to have playgrounds.
§ Sir C. TREVELYAN
For the reason that, in the matter of playgrounds, the country, unfortunately, starts from scratch. A few years ago there were very few playgrounds other than the asphalt yards round the schools in which the working classes get their only chance of education; but we are rapidly moving beyond that, and most local authorities now are saying that it ought to be part of our education to give all children the facilities for recreation which have been recognised as proper for children in the older schools of the country. As my hon. Friend reminds me, we have a special pamphlet on playing-fields, urging that they ought to be provided. I think that the hon. Member for Devon-port (Mr. Hore-Belisha) exaggerates in saying that what we are doing is entirely new. Maintenance grants—I agree, on a limited scale—have been part of our education system for a very long time, and he has forgotten that maintenance 2072 grants in connection with the raising of the school age are part of his party's programme. It is all very well to say, "This is not the way to do it, this is not the time to do it; this is not the Bill in which to do it." If it is right to do it, it does not matter in what Bill it is done. It is just as well to do it here and now, by this Bill, as to wait to do it by some careful articulation with some insurance or unemployment scheme, or whatever other method he would propose. Here is the opportunity of doing it for a real purpose. We shall get another generation of children in the schools whom it would be almost impossible for our poorer people to have there if we did not do it. That is the justification.
Duchess of ATHOLL
There are some things which must be said from these benches before we go to a division on this Clause, which, of course, is the kernel of the Bill. I am sure that many hon. Members beside myself were taken aback at hearing the hon. Member for Devonport (Mr. Hore-Belisha), who is himself an old public school boy, entering into some very regrettable inaccuracies with regard to public schools similar to those we have heard on more than one occasion from the hon. Member for Silvertown (Mr. J. Jones). Probably the hon. Member for Silvertown did not have the advantage of being educated at one of the old schools, and, therefore, is not accurately informed about the endowments of those schools; but it is surprising to hear what was said by the hon. Member for Devonport. He has told us that the old endowments of these schools were intended for the poor and are being used by the rich. The hon. Member for Silvertown actually went so far as to say that boys in the public schools were costing the country so much for their education. He said the boys in Westminster school were costing the country £200 a year each. Since that speech I have taken some trouble to ascertain the facts, and have found that what was said is entirely inaccurate.
Every parent who has a boy in Westminster School pays the full cost of the boy's education, except, of course, the parents of those boys who have gained scholarships, and even they have to pay about £50 a year, because the value of a scholarship is not sufficient for the full 2073 cost of the schooling of the boy. There is a further deficit on each scholar which is made up from the school funds, and I do nut think need remind the house that the endowments were left by private individuals, and are in no sense State endowments. With regard to what the hon. Member for Devonport said as to the endowment of public schools being for the poor and needy, I think he must be unaware of the facts. Mr. Leach, who wrote about the schools of mediseval England, paints out that every scholar at Winchester had to make a declaration that his father had a certain income, which was nearly three times the income of an artisan. The same thing applied at Eton. In founding Eton, Henry VI expressly excepted persons of what was then called villein status from coming under the benefits of the endowments of that school. They were persons who were of unfree status. [Interruption.] I must not get into a discussion with my Noble Friend the Member for Hastings (Lord E. Percy) regarding villein status, but I think it might be described as tenant status. Villeins, I think, did not hold land freehold, but had to render certain services to the lord of the manor. The point is that those schools were not in- tended for what we call the children of working-class parents, because in those days people had not got so far as to visualise the need of a thorough education for all classes. It was true in those days, as it is to-day, that those endowments enabled many boys whose parents were not well-to-do, and yet were not of the working class, to get a first-class education. It is utterly untrue to say that all the boys in those schools are robbing anybody, and least of all robbing the State.
§ Mr. HORE-BELISHA
I hope the Noble Lady does not suggest that I said they were robbing anybody. I was merely saying that the system of maintenance allowances is an old system, as we see in the endowments of public schools. I should be the last to say that anybody was robbing anybody else.
Duchess of ATHOLL
The hon. Member spoke of the desirability of assimilating the two classes of schools. I entirely agree; but I submit to him that already there is a great deal of 2074 assimilation. All secondary schools are sending in boys to the same examinations; the boys are passing on to the same universities. Scholarships at the universities are being gained by boys from all types of schools. What we call the public school system—;the team spirit, the games, the division into "houses"—is now found in every grant-aided secondary school in the country, and also in many of the public elementary schools. The public schools have benefited from the elementary schools through the introduction of school medical services, and the other schools have benefited through what the public schools have taught them —the games and so on. There is a far greater degree of assimilation than some hon. Members realise, and it is an assimilation which, I am certain, is growing every day.
One further point, with regard to maintenance allowances. I think that what the hon. Member for Devonport said about them is rather in the nature of a belated penance. We on these benches wonder why we did not hear that speech two or three weeks ago. Even last week that speech would have been very valuable to us in our discussions. I do not think the hon. Member has taken any part in these debates previously, but now, when the matter is practically settled, he comes forward and airs some very interesting views. I have one thing to say to the Minister which I do not think he has heard before. The other day I ventured to point out that he had underestimated the cost of these maintenance allowances in the "peak" year. I have done some more arithmetic since then, and I think he has under-estimated the cost in the year previous to the "peak" year. Therefore, the estimates given in the Financial Memorandum are not sufficient. There is an under-estimate, and this expenditure, to which the hon. Member for Devonport so much objects, is going to lead us a great deal further than was expected. In one locality I understand that not 75 per cent. but 79 per cent. of the children will be entitled to them, and if that is the case all over the country, it will add very considerably to what is already admitted to be the cost.
The Minister has made some concessions in the course of our discussions. He said that local authorities are to be per- 2075 mitted to make inquiries, and that if they do not like the Schedule attached to the Bill they may use another Schedule; but the alternative Schedule is to be "similar" to the one in the Bill, and therefore that concession seems to be valueless. We say we object to the Schedule because under it local authorities may find it difficult to make the inquiries on which they lay so much stress. We say that all this is just part of the leading strings which the right hon. Gentleman is introducing for the first, time into our educational system. The spirit of our educational system hitherto has been a very free one. There has been a great deal of power delegated to the local authorities. They have said how they wished these maintenance allowances to be administered. Their advice has been largely disregarded, and this Clause says that the parents are entitled to receive 5s. a week. Therefore, any
§ liberty which the President of the Board of Education professes to give to local authorities amounts to very little. The Minister has in this discussion gone a very small way to meet our objections to the Clause, and particularly in regard to maintenance allowances. We propose, therefore, to divide against it.
§ Lieut. - Colonel ACLAND - TROYTE
There is one small point I would like to mention before the Division takes place. In Sub-section (2, a) the maintenance grants mentioned are not given to any children attending an institution. Thai will be a great handicap to certain institutions like Dr. Barnardo's Homes for Waifs and Strays, and I would ask the President to consider whether he can do anything to help this institution.
§ Question put, "That the Clause, as amended, stand part of the Bill."
§ The Committee divided: Ayes, 289; Noes, 200.2079
|Division No.44||AYES||[7.3 p.m.|
|Adamson, Rt. Hon. W. (Fife, West||Clynes, Rt. Hon. John R.||Hardie, George D.|
|Adamson, W. M. (Staff, Cannock)||Cocks, Frederick Seymnour||Harris, Percy A.|
|Addison, Rt. Hon. Dr. Christopher||Collins, Sir Godfrey (Greenock||Hartshorn, Rt. Hon. Vernon|
|Aitchison, Rt. Hon. Craigie M.||Compton, Joseph||Hastings, Dr. Somerville|
|Alexander, Rt. Hon. A. V. (Hlllsbro')||Cove, William G.||Haycock, A. W.|
|Alpass, J. H.||Cowan, D.M.||Hayday, Arthur|
|Ammon, Charles George||Daggar, George||Hayes, John Henry|
|Angell, Norman||Dallas George||Henderson, Right Hon. A.(Burnley)|
|Arnott, John||Dalton, Hugh||Henderson, Thomas (Glasgow)|
|Aske, Sir Robert||Davies, E. C. Montgomery||Henderson, W. W. (Middx., Enfield)|
|Attlee, Clement Richard||Davies Rhys John (Westthoughtor)||Herriotts. J.|
|Ayles, Walter||Day, Harry||Hirst, G. H. (York W. R. Wentworth|
|Barnes, Alfred John||Denman, Hon. R. D.||Hirst, W. (Bradford, South)|
|Barr, James||Dudgeon, Major C.R.||Hoffman, P. C.|
|Batey, Joseph||Dukes, C.||Hopkin, Daniel|
|Bellamy, Albert||Duncan, Charles||Hore, Bellsha, Leslle|
|Bennett, Sir E. N. (Cardiff, Central||Ede, James, Chuter||Horrabin, J.F.|
|Bennett, William (Battersea, South||Edmunds, J. E.||Hudson, James H. (Huddersfield)|
|Benson, G.||Edwards, E. (Morpeth)||Jenkins, W. (Glamorgan, Neath|
|Bentham, Dr. Ethel||Egan, W. H.||John, William (Rhondda, West)|
|Bevan, Aneurin (Ebbw Vale)||Elmley, viscount||Johnston, Thomas|
|Birkett, W. Norman||Evans, Capt. Ernest (Weish Unvier.)||Jones, F. Liewellyn. (Fllnt)|
|Bondfield, Rt. Hon. Margaret||Foot, Isaac||Jones, Henry Haydn (Merioneth)|
|Bowen, J. W.||Forgan, Dr. Robert||Jones, Rt. Hon. Lelf (Camborne)|
|Bowerman, Rt. Hon. Charles W.||Freeman, Peter||Jones, Morgan (Caerphilly)|
|Broad, Francis Alfred||Gardner, B. W. (West Ham. Upton)||Jones, T. l. Mardy (Pontypridd)|
|Brockway, A. Fenner||George, Major G. Lloyd (Pembroke)||Jewett, Rt. Hon. F. W.|
|Bromfield, William||George, Megan Lloyd (Angiesea||Jowitt, Sir W. A. (Preston)|
|Bromley, J.||Gibbins, Joseph||Kedward, R. M. (Kent, Ashford|
|Brooke, W.||Gibson, H. M. (Lancs, Mossley||Kelly, w. T.|
|Brothers, M.||Gill, T. H.||Kennedy, Thomas|
|Brown, C. W. E. (Notts, Mansfield)||Glassey, A. E.||Kirkwood, D.|
|Brown, Rt. Hon. J. (South Ayrshire)||Gossling, A. G.||Knight, Holford|
|Brown, W. J. (Wolverhampton, West||Gould. F.||Lang, Gordon|
|Buchanan, G.||Graham, Rt. Hon. Wm. (Edin., Cent.)||Lansbury, Rt. Hon. George|
|Burgess, F. G.||Granville, E.||Lathan, G.|
|Burgin, Dr. E. L.||Gray, Milner||Law, Albert (Bolton)|
|Buxton, C. R. (Yorks. W. R. Elland||Greenwood, Rt. Hon. A. (Coine).||Law. A. (Rosendale)|
|Calne, Derwent Hall-||Grenfell, D. R. (Glamergan)||Lawrence, Susan|
|Cameron, A. G.||Griffith, F. Kingsley (Middlesbro' W.)||Lawrie, Hugh Jartley (Stalybridge|
|Cape, Thomas||Griffiths, T. (Monmouth, Pontypool)||Lawson, John James|
|Carter, W. (St. Pancras, S. W.)||Groves, Thomas E.||Lawther, W. (Barnard Castle)|
|Charleton, H. C.||Grundy, Thomas W.||Lawther, W. (Barnard Castle)|
|Chater, Daniel||Hall, G. H. (Merthyr Tydvll||Lee. Frank (Derby, N. E.)|
|Church, Major A. G.||Hall, Capt. W. G. (Portsmouth, C.)||Lee. Jennie (Lanark, Northern)|
|Clarke, J. S.||Hamilton, Mary Agnes (Blackburn||Lees, J.|
|Cluse, W. S.||Harbord, A.||Lewis, T. (Southampton|
|Lindley, Fred W.||Oliver, George Harold (likeston)||Smith, W. R. (Norwich)|
|Lloyd, C. Ellis||Oliver, P. M.(Man., Blackley)||Snell, Harry|
|Logan, David Gilbert||Owen, H. F. (Hereford)||Snowden, Thomas (Accrington)|
|Longden, F.||Palin John Henry||Sorensen, R.|
|Lovat-Fraser, J. A.||Pallng, Wilfrid||Stamford, Thomas W.|
|Lowth, Thomas||Parkinson, John allen (wigan)||Stephen, Campbell|
|Lunn, William||Perry, S. F.||Stewart, J. (St. Rollox)|
|Macdonald, Gordon (Ince)||Pethick-Lawrence, F. W.||Strachey, E. J. St. Loe|
|MacDonald, Malcolm (Bassetlaw)||Phillips, Dr. Marion||Strauss, G. R.|
|McElwee, A.||Piction-Turbervlll, Edith||Sutton, J. E.|
|McEntee, V. L.||Pole, Major D. G.||Taylor, R. A. (Lincoin)|
|McGovern, J. (Glasgow, Shettleston.||Potts, John S.||Taylor, W. B. (Norfolk, S.W.)|
|McKinlay, A.||Price, M. P.||Thorne, w. (West Ham, Plalstow)|
|MacLaren, Andrew||Pybus, Percy John||Thurtle, Ernest|
|Maclean, Sir Donald (Cornwall, N.)||Quibell, D. J. K.||Tillett, Ben|
|Maclean, Nell (Glasgow, Govan)||Ramsay, T. b. Wllson||Tinker, John Joseph|
|MacNeill-Weir, L.||Rathbone, Eleanor||Tout, W. J.|
|McShane, John James||Raynes, W. R||Townend, A. E.|
|Malone, C. L'Estrange (N'thampton)||Richards, R.||Trevelyan, Rt. Hon. Sir Charles|
|Mander, Geoffrey le M.||Richardson. R. (Houghton-le-Spring||Vaughan, D. J.|
|Mander, Geoffrey le M.||Richarson, R. (Houghton-ie-spring)||Vaughan, D. J.|
|Marcus, M.||Romerill, H. G.||Walkden, A. G.|
|Markham, S. F.||Rosbotham, D. S. T.||Walker, J.|
|Marley, J.||Rothschild, J. de||Wallace, H. W.|
|Marshall, Fred||Rowson, Guy||Wallhead, Richard C.|
|Mathers, George||Salter, Dr. Alfred||Walters, Rt. Hon. Sir J. Tudor|
|Matters, L. W.||Samuel, Rt. Hon. Sir H. (Darwen)||Watkins, F. C.|
|Maxton, James||Sanders, W. S.||Watson, W. N. (Dunfermline)|
|Messer, Fred||Sawyer, G. F.||Wellock, Wllfred|
|Middleton, G.||Scrymgeour, E.||Welsh, James (Paisley)|
|Milner, Major J.||Scurr, John||West, F. R.|
|Montague, Frederick||Sexton, James||Westwood, Joseph|
|Morgan, Dr. H. B.||Shaw, Rt. Hon. Thomas (Preston)||White, H. G.|
|Morley, Ralph||Shepherd, Arthur Lewis||Whiteley, Wllfrid (Birm., (Ladywood)|
|Morris, Rhys Hopkins||Sherwood, G. H.||Wilkinson, Ellen C.|
|Morris-Jones, Dr. J. H. (Denbigh)||Shield, George William||Williams, David (Swansea, East|
|Morrison, Herbert (Hackney, South)||Shiels, Dr. Drummond||Williams, Dr. J. H. (Lianelly)|
|Morrison, Robert C. (Tottenham, N.)||Shillaker, J. F.||Williams, T. (York, Don Valley)|
|Mort, D. L.||Shinwell, E.||Wilson, C. H. (Sheffeld, Attercliffe)|
|Moses, J. J. H.||Short, Alfred(Wednesbury)||Wilson, J. (Oldham)|
|Mosley, Lady C. (Stoke.on-Trent)||Simmons, C. J.||Wilson, R. J. (Jarrow)|
|Muff, G.||Simon, E. D. (Manch'ter, Wlthington)||Winterton, G. E. (Leicester, Loughb'gh)|
|Mugneridge, H. T.||Sinclair, sir. A. (Calthnese)||Wise, E. F.|
|Nathan, Major H. L.||Sitch, charies H.||Wood, Major Mckenzie (Banff)|
|Naylor, T. E.||Smith, Ben (Bermondsey, Rotherhithe)||Wright, W. (Rutherglen|
|Newman, sir R. H. S. D. L. (Exeter)||Smith, Frank (Nuneaten)||Young, R. s. (Lsllngton, North|
|Noel Baker, P. J.||Smith, H. B. Lees-(Keighley)|
|Noel-Buxton, Baroness (Norfolk, N.||Smith, Rennie (Penistone)||TELLER FOR THE AYES.—|
|Oldfield, J. R.||Smith, Tom (Pontefract)||Mr. Charles Edwards and Mr. William Whiteley.|
|Acland-Troyte, Lieut-Colonet||Burton, colonel H. W.||Duckworth, G. A. V.|
|Ainsworth, Lieut-Col. charles||Butt, Sir Alfred||Dugdale, Capt. T. L.|
|Albery, Irving James||Cadogan, Major Hon. Edward||Eden, Captain Anthony|
|Alexander, Sir Wm. (Glasgow, Cent'l||Campbell, E. T.||Edmondson, Major A. J.|
|Allen, Sir J. Sandeman (Liverp'l., W||Carver, Major W. H.||Elliot, Major Walter E.|
|Amery, Rt. Hon. Leopold C. M. S.||Castle Stewart, Earl of||England, Colonel A.|
|Ashley, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Wllfrid W.||Cayzer, Sir C. (Chester, City)||Erskine, Lord (Somerest, Weston-s.M.)|
|Aster, Maj. Hon John J. (Kant, Dover||Cayzer, Maj. Sir Herbt. R. (Prtsmith.S.)||Everard, w. Lindsay|
|Atholl, Duchess of||Cazalet, Captain Victor A.||Falle, Sir Bertram G.|
|Baillie-Hamltton, Hon. Charles W.||Chadwick, Capt. Sir Robert Burton||Fielden, E. B.|
|Baldwin, Rt. Hon. Stanley||Chamberiain, Rt. Hn. Sir J.A.(Birm., W.)||Fison, F. g. Clavering|
|Balfour, George (Hampstead||Christie, J. A.||Ford, Sir P.J.|
|Balfour, Captain H. H.(l. of Thanef||Churchill, Rt. Hon. Winston Spencer||Fremantle, Lieut.-Colonel Francis E.|
|Balniel, Lord||Clydesdale, Marquess of||Galbraith, J. F. W.|
|Beamish, Rear-Admiral T. P. H.||Cobb, sir Cyrill||Ganzoni, Sir John|
|Beaumont, M. W.||Cockerill, Brig.-General Sir George||Gault, Lieut.-Col. Andrew Hamllton|
|Bellairs, Commander Carlyon||Cohen, Major J. Brunel||Gllmour, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir John|
|Berry, Sir George||Colman, N. C. D.||Glyn, Major R. G. C.|
|Betterton, sir Henry B.||Courtauld, Major J. S.||Gower, Sir Robert|
|Birchall, Major Sir John Dearman||Courthope, colonel sir G. L.||Grace, John|
|Bird, Ernest Roy||Cranborne, Viscount||Graham, Fergus (Cumberland, N.|
|Boothby, R. J. G.||Crichton-Stuart, Lord C.||Grattan-Doyle, Sir N.|
|Bourne, Captain Robert Croft||Croft, Brigadler-General Sir H.||Grenfell, Edward C. (City of London|
|Bowater, col. Sir t. Vanslttart||Crookshank, Capt. H. C.||Gretton, Colonel Rt. Hon. John|
|Bowyer, Captain Sir George E. W.||Croom-Johnson, R. P.||Guinness, Rt. Hon. Walter E.|
|Boyce, H. L.||Culverwell, C. T. (Bristol, West)||Gunston, Captain D. W.|
|Bracken, B.||Cunliffe-Lister, Rt. Hon. Sir Phllip||Hacking, Rt, Hon. Douglas H.|
|Brass, Captain Sir William||Davidson, Major-General Sir J. H.||Hall, Lieut-Col. Sir F. (Dulwich|
|Briscoe, Richard George||Davies, Maj. Geo. F.(Somerset, Yeovll||Hammersley, S. S.|
|Brown, brig.-Gen.H.C.(Berle, Newb'y)||Davison, Sir W. H. (Kensington, S.||Hanbury, C.|
|Bullock, Captain Malcolm||Dawson, Sir Philip||Hannon, Patrick Joseph Henry|
|Hartington, Marquess of||Mitchell, sir, W. Lane (Streatham||Smith-Carington, Neville W.|
|Harvey, Major S. e. (Devon, Totnes)||Mond, Hon. Henry||Smithers, Waldron|
|Haslam, Henry C.||Monsell, Eyres, Com. Rt. Hon. Sir B.||Somerville, a. a. (Windsor)|
|Henderson, Capt. R. R. (Oxf'd, Henley||Moore, sir Newton J. (Richmond)||Somerville, D. G. (Wlllesden, East|
|Heneage, Lieut.-Colonel Arthur P.||Moore, Lieut.-Colonel T. C. R. (Ayr)||Southby, Commander A. r. J.|
|Hennessy, Major sir G. R. J.||Morrison, W. S. (Glos., Cirencester)||Spender-clay, Colonel H.|
|Herbert, Sir Dennis (Hertford||Muirhead, A. J.||Stanley, Lord (Fylde)|
|Hills, Major Rt. Hon. John Waller||Newton, Sir D. G. C.(Cambridge||Stanley, Maj. Hon. O.(W'merland|
|Hoare, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir S. J. G.||Nicholson, O. (Westminster)||Stewart, W. J. (Belfast, South)|
|Horne, Rt. Hon. Sir Robert S.||Nicholson, Col. Rt. Hn. W. G. (Ptrst'ld)||Sueter, Rear-Admiral M. F.|
|Howard-Bury, colonel C. K.||Nield, Rt. Hon. Sir Herbert||Taylor, Vice-Admiral E. A.|
|Hudson, Capt. A. U. M. (Hackney, N.)||Oman, Sir Charles William C.||Thomas, Major L. B. (King's Norton|
|Hunter-Weston, Lt.-Gen. Sir Aylmer||O'Neill, Sir H.||Thomson, Sir F.|
|Hurd, Percy A.||Ormsby-Gore, Rt. Hon. William||Tinne, J. A.|
|Kindersley, Major G. M.||Peake, Capt. Osbert||Train, J.|
|Kinley, J.||Percy, Lord Eustace (Hastings)||Tryon, Rt. Hon. George Clement|
|Knox, Sir Alfred||Peto, Lord Eustace (Hastings)||Turton, Robert Hugh|
|Lamb, Sir J. Q.||Power, Sir John Cecil||Vaughan-Morgan, sir Kenyon|
|Lambert, Rt. Hon. George (S. Molton||Pownall, Sir Assheton||Wallace, Capt. D. e. (Hornsey)|
|Lane fox, Col. Rt. Hon. George R.||Ramsbotham, H.||Ward, Lieut.-Col. Sir A. Lambert|
|Law, Sir Alfred (Derby, High Peak||Rawson, Sir Cooper||Wardlaw-Milne, J. S.|
|Leigh, Sir John (Clapham)||Remer, John R.||Waterhouse, Captain Charles|
|Leighton, Major B. E. P.||Reynolds, Col. Sir James||Wells, Sydney R.|
|Lewis, Oswald (Colchester||Richardson, sir P. W. (Sur'y, Ch't'sy||Williams, Charles (Devon, torquay|
|Llewellin, Major J. J.||Rodd, Rt. Hon. Sir James Rennell||Windsor-Clive, Lieut.-Colonel George|
|Locker-Lampson, Rt. Hon. Godfrey||Ross, Major Ronald D.||Winterton, Rt. Hon. Earl|
|Locker-Lampson, Com. O.(Handsw'th)||Ruggles-Brise, Lieut-Colonel E. A.||Withers, Sir John James|
|Long, Major Hon, Eric||Russell, Alexander, West (Tynemouth)||Wolmer, Rt. Hon. viscount|
|McConnell, sir Joseph||Salmon, Major L.||Womersley, W. J.|
|Macdonald, Capt. P. d. (L. of W.)||Samuel, A. M. (Surrey, Farnham)||Wood, Rt. Hon. Sir Kingsley|
|Maitland, A. (Kent. Faversham||Samuel, A. M. (Surrey, Farnham)||Worthington-Evans, Rt. Hun. Sir L.|
|Makins, Brigadier-General E.||Sandeman, Sir N. Slewart||Wright, Brig.-Gen. W. D. (Travist'K)|
|Margesson, Captain H. D.||Sassoon, Rt. Hon. Sir Philip A. G. D.||Young, Rt. Hon. Sir Hilton|
|Marjoribanks, Edward||Savery, S. S.|
|Mason, Colonel Glyn K.||Simms, Major-General J.||TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—|
|Meller, R. J.||Smith, Louls W. (Sheffield, Hallam)||Sir George Penny and Sir Victor Warrender|
|Merriman, Sir F. Boyd||Smith, R. W.(Aberd'n & Kinc'dine, C.|