HC Deb 24 September 1931 vol 256 cc1903-47

I beg to move, in page 3, to leave out line 4.

It will be apparent to the Committee at once that the effect of my Amendment, if it were carried, would be to exclude the subject of education and educational work generally from the purview of the Orders-in-Council which it is proposed shall be issued in consequence of the passing of this Bill. Before I proceed to argue my case, I think it is right and proper that we should express our firm protest against the fact that we are limited to an exceedingly small measure of time for the discussion of the highly important subject that is now before us.

The first point that I wish to raise is this: Hon. Members opposite, supporters of the Government, have been comforting themselves and their constituents with the reflection that the proposals which the Government have made with regard to educational work generally will be of a purely temporary character. I want to ask at this early juncture: Is it strictly the case that what is proposed will be of a temporary character? If I understand the position aright—and I fortify myself in this judgment by a reference to what the Prime Minister said on the Second Reading of the Bill—once these Orders-in-Council have been promulgated they cannot be annulled without the consent of Parliament. I will read the relevant passage of the Prime Minister's speech on 11th September: An Order-in-Council issued has the effect of an Act of Parliament and can be changed only by an Act of Parliament."—[OFFICIAL REPORT, 11th September, 1931; col. 421; Vol. 256.] There are provisions no doubt adumbrated with regard to educational work which everybody hopes may be purely temporary, but there are other provisions which undoubtedly stand a very great chance of becoming far more permanent in character. If it be true that some of these changes, such as the change with regard to grant regulations, may be of a permanent character, it is obvious that the case for removing education from the purview of the Orders-in-Council is strengthened thereby. When we discuss this subject of education, we always understand that there are three interests directly affected, namely, the teachers, the local education authorities, and finally, and not by any means the least important—indeed, the most important—the interests of the child. I shall take them in that order, because they happen to be discussed in that order in Command Paper 3952 and in the explanatory Circular 1413.

First, as to the question of the teachers: We are all aware as Members of this House that the teachers of this country have expressed themselves in the firmest possible language concerning the proposals of the Government. I will come to the present position in a moment, but I think it is not inappropriate to invite the Committee to examine why it is that this grave resentment has arisen, and the first obvious reason, I think, is this: There has been a suspicion in the minds of the teachers that under the cloak of economy an attack has been made upon a profession and a piece of State activity which to many people has become their pet aversion. Many people have the idea that the whole of this controversy about teachers' salaries has arisen from the difficulty with regard to our financial stringency. What did the majority Report of the May Committee itself say? I invite the Committee to read the paragraph on page 59: We regard the reductions we have proposed "— I ask the Committee to observe the next few words— not as sacrifices necessitated by national financial stringency, but as readjustments necessary to re-establish fair relativities over the field of Government and local authority servants and with wage-earners generally. 8.0 p.m.

In other words, if that paragraph means anything at all, it means that they frankly admit that they were not making these regulations to deal with the financial stringency at all. They were concerned with dealing with another problem entirely, and a problem, in my judgment, which they were not called upon to deal with at all. They were not invited to level up wages between wage earners and teachers. That was not their job. They were not invited to say whether teachers were too well paid or too ill paid. That was not their job. They have seized upon this opportunity to effect certain readjustments in order to make a better relativity between the wages of Government servants and the wages of wage earners generally. I do not wish to be unkind to this Committee, but peeping through every reference to education in their report is a deliberate intention to reduce as far as possible every activity of the State in the department of education. Teachers felt therefore that their profession as a profession was being unjustly singled out. They objected also because they were called upon to bear a special burden—not as citizens; to that they have no objection; no one objects as a citizen to being called upon to bear a fair share, providing the sacrifices are equal. Here they were called upon as teachers, because of the particular profession which they follow, and they were rightly justified in protesting against being especially singled out. Their demand was not one for special privileges, as I understand it, but a demand for protection against special prejudices.

If the teachers took the Prime Minister's slogan "Equality of sacrifice" seriously, certainly no one on the other side has a right to complain. If there is to be equality of sacrifice all round, no one can complain, and I am sure that the teachers cannot complain. But what, in point of fact, has happened? They are being attacked at four points. First they will, like everybody else, be mulcted in the after effects of the change from the Gold Standard; the increase in the cost of living will affect them like other citizens, and they cannot complain of that. Like other citizens, too, they will be mulcted in extra payments for Income Tax. Over and above that, a sort of capital levy has been imposed upon their incomes, a cut has been effected in their wages. At first, the proposal was 15 per cent.—


20 per cent.


No; the cut proposed to the House was 15 per cent. That has now been changed to 10 per cent. This double burden, everyone will agree, is extremely heavy. I say again that I do not believe that teachers or anyone else will ask for special exemption since it involves all citizens who come within the Income Tax proposals. The third burden, however, is imposed upon them because of the particular calling to which they belong. It is heavy in many ways, and I will take one. Those of us who have had the misfortune to be obliged to buy a house in and around London in recent years know what that means. With people who have very modest incomes, the burden is one which is extremely grievous to bear. House purchase commitments, therefore, will fall with exceptional severity upon those people whose incomes are to be reduced. It seems specially unjust to mulct people who have tried to be prudent in days of comparative well-being. If anyone should have remembered the danger of vesting injustice upon the prudent, it should surely have been the chairman of the May Committee, who ought to have known above everybody else that the more the prudent contract the more the Prudential expands.

Now the position has changed, and the magnitude of the cut originally proposed to the House has been limited. The proposal now is that it should be 10 per cent. instead of 15. I have no right to speak officially on behalf of the teachers; I speak for myself; but I presume that teachers, like other people, will prefer a In per cent. cut to a 15 per cent. cut. I invite the Committee to observe, however, that the basic objection which teachers advanced and which we advanced is not removed. The attack upon teachers qua teachers, the singling out of teachers from among their fellow citizens, still exists as part of the present proposals. If I am told that teachers' salaries are too high, I would reply that the only way of challenging that is by using the proper machinery for the purpose. One of the most deadly things that has been done by this proposal has been to attack the principle of collective bargaining.

I do not know what the attitude of the teachers will be in regard to this matter, but I will put this question to the President of the Board, whom I congratulate on his occupancy of his present office. There are two groups of teachers whose case is very present to our minds. First, there are the older teachers round about the age of 60, who hope to remain until 65, and others who are younger and are hoping to leave at 60. The pensions of these people will be dependent upon the average salaries which they earn (luring the last five years of their service. If their pensions are to be involved, as they must be, then this cut for the oldest teachers must follow them to the end of their days. That is a particularly hard and severe injustice. I will not ask the right hon. Gentleman to give me a firm answer to-night, but I will ask him, if he wants to retain even the small measure of good will that is left among the teachers, to consider as sympathetically as possible these particularly difficult cases.

There is another class about which I am concerned, and about which the right hon. Gentleman himself should be concerned, because we are both involved in it as a matter of honour. During the passage of the Bill to raise the school age, my right hon. Friend the Member for Central Newcastle (Sir C. Trevelyan), as President of the Board of Education, took steps to invite the authorities to provide places for an extra number of young teachers passing college. The present President is involved in this matter as a matter of honour, because the Liberal party of those days urged us in every possible way to push ahead with this Measure. Thousands of these young people passed through colleges; some are emerging this year, and some will emerge next year. Can the right hon. Gentleman assure me—for I regard it as a matter of conscience, because I was partly responsible in this matter—that these young people will be found places in the schools in spite of the great cry for economy? They have made great sacrifices already; they have spent many scores of pounds, to put it mildly, and not one penny of unemployment benefit will be available for them. I ask the right hon. Gentleman to be good enough to give us assurances upon that matter to-night.

I pass to the second interest which I indicated, namely, the local authorities. Certain consequences follow from the change which the Government have announced. The old arrangement was that the State paid 60 per cent. by way of grant towards the cost of teachers' salaries. Under the new proposals that is to be 50 per cent. There was also,. as first proposed, to be a cut of 15 per cent. That left 85 per cent. to be found between the local authorities and the Board of Education. On a fifty-fifty basis, the local authorities would find 42½ per cent. and the State 42½ per cent. To meet that extra burden of 2½per cent. on the local authority, the Government indicated that they would raise the grant per unit of average attendance by 4s. 6d. Now the situation has changed. Instead of the cut being 15 per cent., it is now 10 per cent. The proportion therefore for local authorities and the State becomes 45–45, so that the local authorities are mulcted in a loss of 5 per cent. instead of 2½ per cent. I invite the President to tell us to-night, because it is highly important and the local authorities ought to know as speedily as possible, what is the proposal of the Government concerning this extra burden.

There is another point which I want to urge. I do not stress it over much, for there may be less in it than appears on the surface, but if this system is to be stabilised for a period of 10 years or more, it might become more important than it is now. Those who took part in the discussions on the Bill to raise the school age will remember that attention was drawn to the declining child population. The figures I have show that between now and 1938 the child population in schools between five and 14 will decline by something like 500,000 or 600,000. That will mean a heavy sum at 4s. 6d., but if you double it, and make it 9s., it will be heavier. There are particular areas where depopulation has gone on at a much more rapid rate than the average. In the Rhondda Valley, for instance, the depopulation has been particularly heavy. Therefore, it is important to know whether this compensation of 4s. 6d. as it was, or of 9s. as I hope it will be, will be enough to cover the whole of the loss which falls upon the local authorities in respect of the changes in grants.

There are friends of mine who would like to say a word on the question of the Deficiency Grant Regulations speak for myself, and express no one's views but my own. I have no copious tears to shed about the removal of the Deficiency Grant Regulations. I admit there are areas which will be hit more heavily than others. London will lose something like £822,000, but why should I alarm myself about London? London is not alarming itself. I saw it stated the day before yesterday that London would be heart and soul behind the Government, and so, apparently, they are going to preserve a frigid but calculated silence. Would such an indulgent attitude have been preserved if a Labour Government had made this proposal?

Next I want to raise the question of building grants, and here we really must have some assurance from the right hon. Gentleman. Reports which come to us indicate that all over the country, local authorities are positively losing their heads over this business of economy. I have heard of authorities who have suddenly stopped the building of schools on which they had started. In truth they could carry on that building, and the right hon. Gentleman could not interfere with the increased grant of 50 per cent. which we gave instead of 25 per cent. in respect of certain buildings started between certain dates. I ask the right hon. Gentleman if there is to be economy that we should not let it run wild, for the only result will be that the whole business of educational reorganisation will be ruined under a false plea that somehow or other the State is thereby being helped.

The third interest I want to put before the Committee is the interest of the child. [HoN. MEMBERS: "Hear, hear!"] I am glad to hear those cheers, and would ask hon. Members opposite whether they can honestly say that the principle of equality of sacrifice is being applied to the children in the elementary schools? Are we calling upon the children of the country as a whole to bear equal sacrifice? I picked up an interesting paragraph the other day in the "Evening News," where I ought to get this sort of information. It said: Eton boys returned to school to-day after the summer holidays. At the end of last half 102 boys left, and to-day 120 new boys arrived. It then went on to speak about the total number of boys at the school, and so on. At Eton the number joining the school shows an increase of 18 per cent. over the number who left.


All paid for by their parents!


That does not alter my argument. Admitting that they are all paid for, my observation is that those people are making no sacrifice at the expense of their children, The it parents say that, whatever the State asks of them, their children are not to suffer, and what I am pointing out is that every single proposal brought before us to-night involves, in one way or another, a lessening of the opportunities for the children in a certain walk of life. There are to be savings. I do not know the exact figure, call it "X," but may I be told at whose expense those savings are to be made? I invite the Committee to observe two ominous paragraphs, one in the White Paper and the other in the Explanatory Circular. The Circular says, speaking of cases where they allow a certain expansion to take place: Generally speaking, however, it would only be possible to consider sanctioning additional annual charges in such cases in so far as they are covered by countervailing economies. Whatever expenditure takes place on one arm of our educational body, as it were, there is to be a countervailing economy on the other arm—larger classes in small classrooms, and therefore overcrowded classrooms, increased fees in many areas. The right hon. Gentleman talks in his White Paper of allowing local authorities to consider proposals for increasing fees. In the poorest areas of this country the fees are already staggeringly high. I was amazed, when I read the records at the Board last year, to find that in counties like Suffolk and Wiltshire, country areas where children of agricultural labourers want a chance, the fees range from 12 to 14 and 16 and even 18 guineas a year, a far too formidable figure for the people there to contemplate. Even if we only stabilised that position we should still leave a fearful handicap against the educational advance of those young people.

Lastly, I want to ask this question. For some years we have been engaged at the Board of Education—the Noble Lord opposite took his share, my right hon. Friend the Member for Central Newcastle took his share and my right hon. Friend who sits beside me played his part also—in a great effort to reorganise schools. Yes, the Parliamentary Secretary can shake his head and lift it in great contempt of this business.


I did not do that. I was only wondering what the hon. Member was going to say about the late President.


Well, the right hon. Gentleman has a queer way of expressing his wonder. I want to ask what is to happen to the great scheme of reorganisation of education which we call the Hadow reorganisation. Is it to come to a dead stop? Are you stabilising it in places where there has been a great advance and also in other areas where no advance at all has been recorded, thus leaving some children with a larger measure of opportunity and some comparatively none at all? It is of the highest importance that we should know whether it is the policy of the Government to bring to an end for the present the Hadow reorganisation. In this matter we are not speaking as Members of the Labour party. Business men have applauded this reorganisation, because they believe that it is not only in the highest interests of the child but of the State, from a commercial and industrial point of view.

May I add that if we are really to equip our children so that they can hold their own in the world the only way of doing it is to equip them adequately in the schools and workshops of our land. I resent very much the implication which I find in the May Committee's Report as to the position of education in the national balance-sheet. As a matter of fact, we cannot afford to cry a halt. I should call it a retreat in response to a trumpet of gold. If Britain is in difficulties, at least let it be courageous enough not to take it out of the Britons of to-morrow. I think this is a shabby attack on the part of those who are re- fusing to shoulder the great burden of citizenship in our land. This Bill if carried will mortgage the future intellectual resources of our country, and it is because of that that we on this side challenge the philosophy underlying it. In that spirit, I have moved the Amendment.

The PRESIDENT of the BOARD of EDUCATION (Sir Donald Maclean)

I am much obliged to the hon. Gentleman opposite who has invited hon. Members to give me a cheer, because I can assure the Committee that the duty which I am endeavouring to discharge to-night is one which does not give me any pleasure. I hold the view which has been expressed by the hon. Member for Caerphilly (Mr. Morgan Jones) that money spent on education is one of the best long-range investments for the nation. It had, however, been said by the late Minister in July that our education was restrained by financial difficulties, nay more by the financial perils which were affecting every country in the world.

I will now deal with the cuts, and I think it will be better if I briefly reply to the points which have been raised, because I realise that a very large number of hon. Members wish to take part in the Debate. I appreciate the wealth of knowledge with which the late Parliamentary Secretary to the Board of Education spoke, and I think the Committee will realise that my experience at the Board of Education has been brief and hectic. Reference has been made to the position of the teachers, and I will deal with that question first. In all fairness, I wish to direct the attention of the Committee to the fact that a reduction in the salaries of the teachers was brought to their notice some time ago before the financial position of the country became acute. The local education authorities in April last gave notice that the salaries of the teachers coming within the ambit of the Burnham scales would be subject tore-vision and that the whole question would be re-opened in April next. Therefore, to that extent the teachers were affected by notice, and they were aware of the movement—a very definite movement—between themselves and the education authorities with regard to the reduction of their salaries. Negotiations were opened, and I understand that they broke down because there was not common agreement on the point that some reduction was necessary. The teachers would not admit that, although the local authorities insisted upon it. Therefore, as far as notice is concerned, I think I am entitled to ask the Committee to recollect those facts.

The next point which was raised by the hon. Member for Caerphilly was one upon which a great deal of public attention has been centred, and that was that the teachers had been singled out for this' drastic financial treatment. I have considered that point as fairly as I could, and I am bound to say that I cannot see how the teachers have been singled out any more than the soldiers, the sailors, the judges, the policemen, and the civil servants. I cannot see where the equity of that claim really lies. A very large number of hon. Members syrnpathised with the claim of the teachers that they had had an unfairly heavy burden placed upon them, but to say that they have been singled out in this national emergency is a very unfair statement to make, and I do not think that that claim has been proved. The teachers were not singled out in the sense which has been claimed, although it is true that they have recently had a very heavy burden placed upon them which I do not in the least wish to minimise.

I do not think that I am giving away any Cabinet secrets when I say that the question of the teachers' remuneration was one which occupied hours of Cabinet consideration; in fact, that question dominated the whole proceedings of a Cabinet meeting, and it was not until after very careful consideration had been given to the question that a decision was arrived at. Up to the present there does not seem to have been any special appreciation of the effect of the reduction of the cut from 15 per cent. to 10 per cent. We have to remember the financial perils which had to be faced in the Budget presented to the House for this half of the present year and for the 12 months dating from 1st April next. We have also to remember that the concessions granted by the Government have wiped out the whole of the estimated surplus and very nearly £1,000,000 more. That is a very grave responsibility for the Government to take in view of the national position, and I think we should give credit where credit is due.

I turn now to another matter on which my hon. Friend addressed me, and on which I count myself in more sympathetic agreement with him. I do not know how far I can comfort him, but I say at once that if I can I certainly will. With regard to the question of pensions, it is commonly said that teachers are not being treated as the police are. My hon. Friend, and also my right hon. Friend the ex-President of the Board, know that there are great and vital differences between the two Services in regard to pensions. The policeman takes his pension at the rate of the last week of his service, whatever it may be, while, as my hon. Friend has pointed out, the pension of the teacher is based on the five years' average. I am very greatly in sympathy with the case of the elder teachers of 58 or 59, who are approaching the age of 60, when they may, if they so choose, elect to retire. I must, however, point out that, if such a teacher does retire after October, 1932, a year hence, his loss will be only 2 per cent., because, of course, the average of the lower years will be diluted into the five years.

Further, may I just point out, though only as a factor which I think ought to be taken into consideration, that, as far as the older teachers are concerned, they came into the benefits of this pension scheme on exceptionally favourable terms. They all came in, no matter what their age was, in 1922, under the very creditable pension scheme which operates between the State and the teaching profession. The only answer that I would give to my hon. Friend is that, if it is financially possible, the Department will, I am sure, be most giad to see how far they can meet these cases. I fear, however, and I must be quite frank about it, that while these hard times last, for some years ahead—certainly 18 months or two years ahead—I see no likelihood of myself or my successor, come when he will and to whatever party he belongs, being able to give any other answer than that which I, with great regret, give to-night. I should like to talk with the representatives of the unions. I think it is one of the best things in the world to hear what people have to say, and I shall be delighted to receive any representations that are made to the Department.

With regard to another point—a very important point—namely, the question of unemployment, there is not the slightest doubt that the House of Commons did offer inducements to young people to enter this profession. In those days bright hopes were held out with regard to the profession, that, with the development of higher education and the raising of the school-leaving age, it was at any rate a profession to which the young might confidently pledge their future. I quite agree. I have made a very careful inquiry into the matter, and, while I can give no pledge, as my right hon. Friend and my hon. Friend well know, yet, as far as I have been able to ascertain, there is scarcely any calling connected with the State in which those who are at present leaving college have less reason to fear unemployment. It may come; I cannot say; but I would refer my hon. Friend to what the circular itself says in paragraphs 10, 11, and 13. Paragraph 10 says: The Board contemplate that existing facilities, including the number of teachers employed, should be generally maintained. [Interruption.] There are very few occupations in this country that can say that. Then, in paragraph 11 we find these words: As regards new developments, including the employment of additional teachers"; while in paragraph 13, to which my hon. Friend took some exception, the Board say: They invite the local authorities to submit a forecast of the number of elementary teachers that they desire to employ next year. There is no intention or desire to reduce the number, but to see how far and in what ways they can employ most. That is the intention and desire of the Department.

Let me now turn to a very important question which my hon. Friend addressed to me with regard to the capitation grant. He explained clearly a not very simple arithmetical sum. I think I understand it sufficiently well to say at once that the 36s., which it was proposed to increase, under the cut of 15 per cent., by 4s. 6d., to 40s. 6d., will be increased by 9s. I hope that is perfectly clear and definite. Then let me turn to what my hon. Friend said as to the depopulated areas, speaking from his very wide and varied knowledge of the problem as a former member of this great profession, linked up with his executive experience. It is extremely difficult to give anything like an answer which I feel would satisfy him. All I can say is that the question is not only receiving very careful consideration now, but that very anxious and sympathetic thought and work is being applied to it, and will continue to be applied to it, so that we shall not merely consider the position in the light of the two present Budgets, but as far as may be possible, the position years ahead.

With regard to the building problem, that certainly is a matter which calls for very careful consideration, but I must call the attention of the Committee to certain figures with regard to it, bearing in mind, not only the severe financial situation, but the extreme peril of our situation. There is no doubt about that anyhow. In 1923–24 the total capital expenditure on all forms of education approved by the Board amounted to £1,900,000. By far the major portion of that expenditure was connected with buildings. In 1924–25 the figure was £4,500,000. In 1928–29, the last year of the late Conservative Government, it had gone up to £6,850,000. In 1930–31 it was £13,000,000. In stable financial conditions, when the finances of the country were on a satisfactory basis, I say at once that those figures, instead of frightening me, gave me great pleasure, but in the position we are in the late Government had no alternative other than to stop the increase of the grant and to revert to the former 20 per cent.

I agree most emphatically with the hon. Member who hoped that there would be no hysterical economy. Certainly the Board, in a circular already issued, deprecate any panic economy. I cannot imagine anything more wasteful than cutting down and throwing away money when it will certainly be wanted at no distant date. I hope that local authorities, with the approval of the Board of Education, will see that, if economies are enforced, they will be reasonable economies and not panic economies. The Board of Education is very anxious to get into the closest possible touch with the local education authorities, and with as little upset and uncertainty as may be, and they have cordially invited local authorities to send them by the middle of November a forecast of their expenditure for the year 1932–33, a statement of the number of elementary teachers they expect to employ in that year, and a statement of the new developments that they are anxious to set on foot. I ask the Committee to bear this in mind in view of the anxiety expressed by the hon. Member and others that our education system is going to be subjected to senseless reductions of expenditure and that there will be a blind striking out in all sorts of directions which may do great damage to our education system. It would be the duty of any Government to see that economy is practised with all requisite efficiency. The estimated increase of expenditure of this Department for the year was a little over £2,000,000 over that of the last year, which was a record year. The May Committee, which rendered a very great and lasting service to the country, recommended that that increase should be reduced by £1,000,000. That is exactly what we have done.

I hope it will be borne in mind that, instead of this panic economy, what they are proposing to do with regard to the system of education itself, apart from teachers' salaries, is to allow for an increase of expenditure to the extent of £1,000,000 even in these perilous times. That is consistent with the maintenance of the highest ideals of education in such dangerous financial conditions as obtain at present. I hope that will be borne in mind when we hear, I will not say senseless criticisms, but the very ill-informed criticisms to which this Administration like all Administrations is, from time to time, subject. There is a very earnest desire on the part of the Board, and of local education authorities, to take this opportunity of consideration, conciliation, and re-organisation with regard to the whole system of future salaries, which consideration was due soon anyhow. The sooner that process starts the better. I have no authority to say so, but I hope it may be possible, with the consent of all parties concerned, to get Lord Burnham to render his assistance again, because no man understands the whole question better than he does, and we should be specially fortunate if we were able to persuade him to undertake such a duty once more. I want to pay a very sincere and whole-hearted tribute to the very great assistance which local education authorities have rendered to me in this most difficult task which I have been compelled to undertake.


What about new schools?


In the coming year it is estimated that no fewer than 200 new schools will probably be opened.


Does that mean schools already sanctioned?


Schools that are already sanctioned, of course. I cannot tell what schools received sanction before.


That is the paint I am asking.


I can tell the bon. Member at once that it will be the policy of the Board to see, as far as it can, that new areas of population are certainly dealt with on proper and definite lines. I have had very great assistance from local education authorities. They have already shown the greatest desire to assist us, and indeed they have assisted us very materially. I have also had interviews with representative bodies of teachers, and, as far as my personal experience of them is concerned. I have found them reasonable people. I cannot say how far that attitude was carried out on the platform and in the Press. I gather that it was rather different. I am sure that when the present excitement is over we may look forward to the most cordial, effective and most useful co-operation of the teachers.

I will say a word about what, after all, is the greatest concern of the teachers, the local education authorities and the Board of Education, namely, the child. What about the child? I make an appeal to the teachers to which I am confident they will respond. The child is not only their material interest but their life interest and their ethical interest. They desire to serve the State through the child, and I am sure they are as active as ever they were. I hope that after the action of His Majesty's Government in meeting them, not only fairly but, I think, with a risk and, I would add, a generosity in view of the very difficult financial position of the country, that when the heat and dust of the conflict, which was inevitable, has died down, we shall all join together to render the greatest service possible to the community. There has been a serious run upon the bank of citizenship. I believe that the finest gold reserve in the country is a well-educated, well-trained child. I appeal not only to the teachers but to this House and to the country that in the greatest charge that can he committed to any State we should put aside our disputes and let unity be our common objective.



In one way the speech to which we have just listened has made my task comparatively simple. The right hon. Gentleman the President of the Board of Education has used a great many kind generalities with which we can all agree, but he has not said that the economies which are in this Bill are not going to injure the education of the children from one end of England to the other. He has, it is true, offered us the consolation that 200 schools are going to be opened almost at once. In what regime were those schools built? I should like to ask him one small question about detail. I believe that Surrey was going to build five secondary schools and had got the plans and was putting them forward to his Department.


The contracts were actually accepted, but not sealed.


The contracts were accepted but not sealed; they have been stopped by the right hon. Gentleman's Department. I only wonder whether the secondary schools are going to be ready a year and a half hence. All I know is that from one end of the country to the other local authorities are stopping building. All the consolation that the right hon. Gentleman gives us is that there will not be a blind striking out of educational expenditure in all directions. All local authorities are not so foolish. Economy will be practised with the requisite efficiency. Yes, he has seen to that.

Viscountess ASTOR

You have seen to it during the last two years.


The requisite efficiency is seen to because of the cuts which he requires them to make. So it will be efficiency. I feel that there is not a petty and unsubstantial difference as to quantity between the two sides of the Committee; the difference is in our main measure of things. Here is the cut in education—one of the greatest of cuts. There has never been agreement between us as to the relative importance of education. Most of us on this side of the Committee put it first, and I am bound to say that honestly, until a couple of months ago, I thought that the Liberals put it first. We all knew that whenever there was an economy campaign that however much real, genuine interest the Tory party may have in education—and I do not deny it; everybody knows that I have never denied it—at the same time they regard national economy as more important than education. The May Report is simply a Tory report. We regard education—and I am going to state this without apology, as I believe I have the support of almost everybody on this side of tile Committee—as a necessity no more to be curtailed than bread, meat or clothing. However bad the condition of the country, the worse the condition of the country, the more we ought to make up to the poor and those who are suffering by at least seeing that their children are as well off or better off than in good times.

I am not going to pursue in an elaborate discussion the economies which make up the total of £9,000,000. The monstrous thing is that there should be these enormous economies at all. The huge total of our armaments is to be less reduced than our education expenditure. The main saving is to be on the children, on the rising generation, on the hope of the world, on the regenerating force of the world. To many of us this is not a mistaken policy; it is a monstrous wrong. A lot of old politicians and old bankers, over 60 years of age, are prepared to throttle the chances of the rising generation, because they have not the will or the pluck to tax the rich. [Interruption.] They have not the pluck to tax me or to tax you.

This attack on the education of the workers was initiated in the country by a series of discreditable statements and misrepresentations. The May Report has been adopted practically wholesale, except for the proportion of the cuts. On what is this savage reduction based? These are some of the things which the May Report says: The standard of education, elementary and secondary, that is being given to the child of poor parents is already in very many cases superior to that with which the middle-class parent is providing for his own child. If these grotesque generalities were even remotely true, is it a reason for breaking down the present meagre chances of working-class education because a number of the middle classers, either through snobbery or other reasons, do not give their children a proper education? The report ends up with this preposterous statement: None of the reductions we recommend"— all of which the Government have adopted— involves the withdrawal of any educational facilities new being afforded. Many millions of pounds are being withdrawn from education, and we are told that the school children are to go on living the same life as before. What nonsense! What contempt they have for the understanding of the workers ! The withdrawal of no educational facilities! What are they doing? They are abolishing the 50 per cent. minimum limit for grants. There will be £1,450,000 less for 71 authorities. Are there no less chances for the children there? Are all the mulcted authorities going to put that £1,000,000 or so on the rates? We know that they are not. London is going to get 23 per cent. of its grant docked. I wonder whether Pre Tory County Council of London are going to put that on the rates. If they are not, how are the children of London to do without that £500,000 that is involved? Some 71 authorities will lose an average of 21 per cent. of their present grant. Yet we are told that there is to be no withdrawal of educational facilities. The thing is rank humbug.

There is to be a general reduction in the growth of expenditure. There is to be a cut of £1,200,000. Most of the rest is to be absorbed in the normal increases. All new enterprise ends. Ends all nursery schools. Ends any further advance of the Hadow reorganisation. The essential school buildings for Hadow reorganisation were being carried through by the 50 per cent. grant, which is now docked again to 20 per cent. All the building projects will begin to go, as in Surrey. Hundreds of thousands of pounds will not be spent. Mark one of the results. There will be innumerable builders, masons, plasterers and joiners out of work. All those projects which would produce 200 schools in a few months will now break down. That is the Government's policy. That is going to improve the trade of the country!

Take smaller things, but not too small to consider when we have the children in mind. This afternoon I went to see an exhibition of mechanical aids to learning. [Laughter.] Why do you laugh. Can you not take anything seriously? There are at the present time tremendous developments of such things as gramophones, cinemas, scientific exhibits for schools, making the task of the teacher easier and immeasurably more efficient. All these are things that are to be cut off. These are the new things for which all the money has been taken away. These are the very things which the teaching profession and the local authorities are beginning to understand really make a, difference in education, and these are the very things that are to be stopped and killed now.


While other nations are using them.


A few words about the cut in the teachers' salaries. Having made the monstrous and cruel proposition that there should be a 15 per cent. cut, and having received 250,000 post cards from the country, the Government hope to set things right by reducing the cut by 5 per cent. They talk as if it were a great concession from 15 per cent. to 10 per cent. I dare say it may save uneasiness in the minds of some politicians, who will be to say: "See how I can squeeze the Government," but I very much doubt if it will reconcile the teachers, and I do not think it ought to reconcile the teachers.

I want to say a personal word. The House is always kindly when anyone speaks of his personal position. When I resigned from the Labour Government, earlier in the year, I took no opportunity, such as is invariably accorded to a retiring Minister, to explain to the House the reasons for my resignation. I wished to make no public attack on the Government then. I separated from them because of my utter distrust of the tendencies which I saw growing in the minds of the leaders of the party and my belief that those tendencies would lead to disaster. I expected this which for us is a catastrophe, but not as sudden or as complete as it has occurred. The fact is that I trusted my colleagues who are now on this side of the House, but I saw the three leaders moving away from Labour ideals and policies, and their present performance surprises me not in its nature but in its extreme character.

If I may say so, I understand the attitude adopted by my colleagues on this side of the House who left the late Government. They were prepared to consider cuts in the various services, including education, on condition that the party approved of them. [Interruption.] And with that I am content. I am absolutely certain that there never was the remotest chance of this party doing other than oppose a 15 per cent. or a 10 per cent. or a 5 per cent. cut. But I also want to say this, that if I had remained as President of the Board of Education, nothing would have induced me to be a party to considering a 20 per cent. or a 10 percent. cut, or to make other drastic education cuts. I would never have been a party to bargaining with or bullying teachers out of what. I consider to be their rights.

What is the position of the teachers? There is a 10 per cent. cut, an enormous and disastrous reduction. I am quite certain that the teachers are prepared to accept increased taxation with the rest of the population, but we have never been told why they should be singled out—I am going to suggest the reason presently—and we want to know why they have been singled out. The first excuse is that their salaries were settled in a period of high prices and that they were settled in relation to high prices. That is definitely the reverse of the truth. The teachers were sweated before the War, an average salary of 36s. a week, and the salaries were settled irrespective of prices. Lord Burnham said: The scales were undoubtedly fixed as standards with the knowledge that they would have the greater value with a fall in prices. And you cut them when the fall in prices came. Further, this is what local education authorities said: The teachers were given their option of a sliding scale of salaries, high at the moment but falling as prices fell, or a scale based upon normal prices, to continue for a period of years. They chose the latter, and thereupon the cost of living ceased to be a factor in settling these scales. As a matter of fact, that was a good answer a fortnight ago by those of us who oppose this proposed cut, but the excuse of prices has now ceased to have any validity at all. Prices are going up. Wholesale flour is 12½ per cent. higher in price already; a period of rising prices is beginning, and the teachers are being swindled out of their rights on a false issue. The latest legislation of the Government disposes of the foolish and thin excuse under which it is made. I want the Committee to appreciate—I do not think the President of the Board of Education appreciates at the moment—another effect of what we are doing. The teachers owe their present salaries to a bargain and a settlement which is not made with the State. They are employed by local education authorities, and their contracts are made with them. The Burnham Committee has settled their salaries, and by the Burnham Committee they ought to be altered, if altered at all. To all intents and purposes, if these cuts are carried through that method of agreement is disposed of for good and all. It is no use saying that they shall settle details but not the principle. What is the use of collective bargaining if a superior power comes in and overrides the bargain on the most important point. Collective bargaining cannot go on under those conditions; and note the result. I am not discussing whether the local authority system or a national system is the best, but we should know where we are going. The teachers now must look to Parliament, and Parliament alone, for a redress of their grievances. The teachers are invited to enter politics in order to maintain their standard of life.

I know there are many hon. Members who want to speak, and I do not want to make a long speech. Let me say one word in conclusion. Our unrelenting opposition to these cuts is not only for the sake of the teachers themselves, but because it is a cruel, foolish, and wrong national policy. The teachers are attacked first and chiefly because a large economy can be made out of them; they are the most vulnerable, but no one thinks that they are the only victims. Their reduction is only the signal for industrial reductions that are to come. It is all part of a lower standards campaign. To the better-paid workers in the next few months it is going to be said: "See the Judges, Cabinet Ministers, His Majesty himself, and well-paid people like the teachers, have made their sacrifice, now, you engineers and railwaymen, go and do likewise. "And to the worst-paid workers it is going to be said: "Even the unemployed, poor devils, they have done their bit "—or they have been done out of their bit—"you cannot be worse off than they are; come along and show your patriotism."

It is the whole policy which we indict. From 1922 onwards, through the coal stoppage and all these years, there has been the unceasing refrain that with lower wages prosperity will come. We do not believe it. We believe it is a lie to say that you can make a nation prosperous by making the people poor. I support the Labour party in the conviction that it will reverse these cuts. Whatever the conditions of trade and prosperity or the reverse, when this party next gets power, as everyone knows it will take whatever measure you like—take 10 years if you want to—but whenever it takes power it will reverse these cuts. I invite this party to show to this policy unrelenting opposition followed by unqualified reversal.


The right hon. Member for Central Newcastle (Sir C. Trevelyan) has rightly said that the House always listens with attention and kindliness to a personal statement, but such a personal statement, according to the custom of this House, must, at any rate, attempt to be fair. I admit that I could not account for the speeches made both by the right hon. Gentleman and by the hon. Member for Caerphilly (Mr. Morgan Jones) about teachers' salaries. I understand that they are both prepared to die in the last ditch rather than to see any reduction of teachers' salaries. That is what I gathered from their remarks. Well, that is very curious.


Except by normal processes. The State is here stepping in to do the work of the committee which, as in any great industry, settles the wages between the two sides.


In other words, the right hon. Gentleman would not have taken action either way, cutting down or improving salaries, and therefore, when he says with a flourish of trumpets that if he had stayed in office he would have been no party to a cut, he means that he would have acquiesced in a cut if settled by the Burnham Committee. [Interruption.] Perhaps the Committee will cast their minds back a few years, because this is not the first time that the right hon. Gentleman has pursued this heroic policy for the protection of teachers' salaries. He did the same thing in 1924, and allowed the Burnham Committee to reach a complete deadlock. When I came into office, some settlement had to be found, and, fortunately, an arbitration award was agreed to. But let hon. Members remember that this year the local authorities went to the right hon. Gentleman opposite and said that they had come to the conclusion that for a proper scientific settlement of teachers' salaries on a new agreement, a committee appointed by the right hon. Gentleman in some form or other to prepare the way for the Burnham Committee was a necessity. The right hon. Gentleman did nothing, and his successor, the hon. Member for Caerphilly did nothing. The right hon. Gentleman says there would have been no cut of 10 per cent. in salaries. Well, notice had been given, for the local authorities had demanded a, reduction in teachers' salaries. Everyone knows they were demanding a reduction of 12½per cent. [Interruption.] Did the hon. Member for Caerphilly take his courage in both hands and inform the local authorities that he thought that was quite a wrong demand? No. He and his associates sat back, and let things drift.

Moreover, the hon. Member for Caerphilly actually complained of the May Committee for having expressed an opinion as to what the level of teachers' salaries ought to be, apart from the financial crisis. If he is going to criticise the May Committee for that, will he kindly tell us why the President of the Board of Education—I have forgotten whether it was the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Central Newcastle or his successor—informed the Burnham Committee officially that any conclusion at which they might arrive would be subject to the conclusions of the May Committee? This cataract of humbug ought now to cease. As everyone knows, the whole question of the structure of teachers' salaries requires to be considered in a very much more scientific way than is possible by bargaining across the table.

This appeal to the Burnham Committee as if they were the be-all and end-all of collective bargaining is nonsense. You have to prepare the way, and the Board of Education under the right hon. Gentleman has never been prepared to do it. If he could get out of the responsibility of having anything to do with teachers' salaries, that was what he wanted. The result is he had a deadlock in 1924, and he produced a deadlock in 1931, and then he stands up with complete unconsciosuness of sin, as though he was the only white-headed boy who ever loved a teacher. That scientific inquiry will have to be undertaken, and the May Committee were perfectly right, and the local authorities and the National Union of Teachers know they were perfectly right, in saying that the Board of Education must take a greater part in the settlement of teachers' salaries. Of course they were. Does the right hon. Member for Central Newcastle really mean that the State, which has to pay more than half the teachers' salaries, should have no say whatever in what those salaries are to be? No constitutional theorist, or anybody who devotes one hour's attention to this problem, will take such an absurd view. The right hon. Gentleman was perfectly determined to have no constructive or progressive views about education at all.

I should like to make one other remark about the question of teachers' salaries. We have had two speeches on this subject from the opposite side which were not claimed to be made on behalf of the National Union of Teachers. I am sure they were not. I have received, as hon. Members may suppose, not merely postcards from my constituency, but long letters from all parts of the country from every class of teacher. Most of them are extremely good-tempered, and the most remarkable thing about them is that over and over again the statement is made that if the Government had asked them for 10 per cent. they would have given it gladly. I know, of course, it is not quite the same thing to have had a cut of 15 per cent. first and then have it reduced to 10 per cent., but, after all, teachers realise perfectly what are the conditions under which the Government have to act in these circumstances. I feel confident that we shall have from the National Union of Teachers a statement of their real position very different and much more generous and patriotic than has come either from the hon. Member for Caerphilly or from the right hon. Member for Central Newcastle.

All this riotous rant on the subject of the cutting down of education! The right hon. Gentleman appears to think that the only sound condition of education is that the country should spend the greatest possible amount of money on it, and that any proposal for economy in any direction must be greeted with shouts about taking the bread out of the children's mouth, or some equally rational expression. I do not think the right hon. Member for Keighley (Mr. Lees-Smith) will quite thank the right hon. Member for Central Newcastle for his rather strange explanation of why the right hon. Member for Keighley remained on the Front Bench in the last Government. The right hon. Member for Central Newcastle says, "What about the five central secondary schools in Southwark?" Does he realise that one effect of his policy at the Board was to reduce the rate of increase of secondary schools in this country?


But not in Surrey.


After all, what has been the growth of educational expenditure in recent years? Between 1924 and 1929, roughly speaking, the Board's expenditure went up by 2 per cent. Hon. Members opposite, in spite of what they said at the last election, now say that those years were years of restriction of educational expansion. They know, however, that there was a considerable amount and a very rapid rate of educational expansion in all these directions. In the last two years the expenditure of the Board has gone up by 15 per cent. That increase of expenditure is not accounted for by building programmes, it is not accounted for by reorganisation, it is not accounted for by any of those things about which the right hon. Gentleman was talking. He does not know to what it is due, nor does any other hon. Member of this Committee, because we have never had an account given of it. But we do know that the money has been going away in various directions. In the last five or six years there has been a steady increase in pure administration by the local authorities. There has been a leakage in all directions. You have not been keeping in your hands the very funds that were necessary for that development, which was your main point.

Now as to this cutting down and its effect on Hadow reorganisation: If the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Central Newcastle would examine some of the programmes of local authorities for the years 1930 to 1933, he would find the very astonishing fact that this great growth of prospective expenditure is not due to reorganisation—I am quoting figures from memory, but they are approximately correct—and that out of an increase of £30,000 to £32,000 in the two years foreseen by the Leicestershire County Council in its programme for teachers salaries, about £21,000 was due to the prospective raising of the school-leaving age, about £9,000 to schools in areas of new populations, and only between £2,000 and £3,000 to reorganisation of the schools. Of course other counties have been making a positive saving on the reorganisation of their schools, though that is rather rare. You can go on with your main work of reorganisation perfectly well under a system of economy, and every one, every local administrator, knows it. You may slow down the rate of increase, I grant, but to say that apart from raising the school-leaving age these cuts mean the holding up of educational progress in that way, is perfectly absurd. I would remind hon. Members opposite that this policy of central schools which they advocate so warmly now is the policy which in the year 1925 they were fighting against tooth and nail up and down the country, and that I had to carry through a policy of central schools in the teeth of that opposition.


We still are opposed.


I see. They are still against a policy of central schools and Hadow reorganisation.


No. They are different things.


They are still opposed to the policy of central schools, and they oppose these cuts because they think that the cuts will stop reorganisation. An hon. Member suggests that they are not the same thing. My final word is this: I apologise to the hon. Lady the Member for East Islington (Mrs. Manning) if I misunderstood her and got into a heated controversy with her. I do not want to be heated, but I do want Members of the Committee to realise that education is inevitably and in its essence a constantly expanding service. You cannot stop educational expansion, because the material for teaching is constantly changing. How have other schools which cannot draw on the taxpayer year after year and century after century met that position? They have met it out of a fixed income, from endowments and fees, slightly above their current needs. They have met it out of money which they have been able to accumulate, with which they have from time to time provided new laboratories and so on.

That is the only principle upon which you will ever be able to carry on continuous educational expansion. You may have spurts for three or four years, and then have economy and shut down, but the only way by which education can continually expand, irrespective of these changes and chances of the financial situation, is to have a steady income from the rates and taxes and from fees, so far as fees are paid in secondary schools—to have an income slightly above your needs and to accumulate that income by careful economy in order that you may be able continuously to expand. This idea that education committees must always be putting more and more demands on the rates is the very death of any consistent and steady educational growth. I believe these economies do point to the possibility of a new system of educational finance which will really ensure consistent and continuous progress, and I have no hesitation and qualms whatever in giving the Government my warmest support.


I have listened with what patience I could to the cataract of humbug which the Noble Lord has poured upon us, as always, from the Olympian heights where he appears to dwell. I want to state quite categorically that the National Union of Teachers has never at any time stated that it did not believe the State had any right to take part in the question of salaries. What we have objected to, as the Noble Lord knows quite well, and as my right hon. Friend the Member for Central Newcastle (Sir C. Trevelyan) knew quite well when he was Minister of Education, is that there should be some office committee which can decide, without consultation with us at all, what should be the scientific methods by which our scales of salaries should be worked out. The national negotiating committee, the Burnham Committee, which the Noble Lord now calls obsolete and upon which he poured so much scorn—


I did not call it obsolete.


The Noble Lord said it was an obsolete negotiating machine. But it is something which the teachers treasure, something which we shall not lightly give up, something which we hope will operate again, because we believe that the interference of the State, as we have had to suffer it at this time, between the employers and employed in the great service of teaching, is something which no profession like ours can accept without degradation to itself. If the State wishes to interfere by the method of a round table conference with us on the question of salaries we shall be only too glad to enter into such negotiations with the State, but we are not prepared to accept the type of interference which we know only too well the Noble Lord would desire. I am sorry, however, that I have been tempted, by the strictures of the Noble Lord, to digress from the subject with which I wish mainly to deal. The Noble Lord always has an irritating effect upon me, and in that respect I think I am not alone in this Committee. To-night I am anxious to deal mainly with the cuts in the education services, apart from the cuts in the teachers' salaries.

I do not think there is any Member in the Committee who does not under- stand now all that is involved in the salaries cut, and I should be labouring the point if I dwelt at any length upon it. What I am anxious to make the Committee understand is that the description of "a cataract of humbug" is justified when anybody states that the cuts which are now proposed will not have a drastic effect upon the education services of the country. I do not say this in any sentimental spirit, but I have listened to hundreds of Debates on education in the House of Commons and I have taken part in a few of them, and the thing which impresses me has always been that appalling remoteness from the realities of the school and of the lives of the children of this country exhibited by hon. Members opposite.

Viscountess ASTOR



Yes, hon. Members opposite, including the Noble Lady the Member for the Sutton Division of Plymouth (Viscountess Astor). In this Chamber economies in education are represented by rows of figures, by grants and formulas. They are represented in the minds of Members by the age groups described by the Noble Lord, and by the "bulge." If ever there was a detestable word applied to boys and girls passing through school it is that word "bulge." It is one of the Noble Lord's Olympian phrases. To me these education cuts and these discussions on education bring up a very different picture. As one who has had the honour to be engaged for many years in the greatest service in the State, when I talk about education and when I regard education estimates and education cuts, I see hundreds of thousands of the boys and girls of our nation, eager, lovable, earnest, crowding into the schools. I see the men and women who give devoted service in those schools. I see the men and women, some of them obscure and humble people and others whose names are well-known at the Board of Education and in the House of Commons, who have given years of voluntary service on local education committees. And I see now the May Committee, like a bull in a china shop, upsetting the delicate mechanism of grants and formulas in connection with our education system.

The Noble Lord probably does not think that that mechanism is sound, and I quite agree, but it is a delicate mechanism and it cannot be upset and broken up in a moment, without having something to put in its place. The May Committee has planted its feet right into that delicate mechanism of the grants of the Board of Education for education services. As regards those services, and the men and women who administer them, and the children in the schools, irretrievable havoc will be wrought if this is allowed to go on, and consternation will be caused to those who have to do the work of education. That is why I appeal to the President of the Board of Education, whose philosophy of education I know is very different from that of the Noble Lord. Unfortunately for the right hon. Gentleman Nemesis has overtaken the present President of the Board of Education. From this bench he proposed the formation of an economy committee. Now he is destroying the one thing in which he believes.

I wish to translate some of the economies outlined in the White Paper in connection with the local education authorities, into terms of the real sacrifices involved in the schools of our country. That is the only way in which hon. Members can understand what is involved in these proposals. They must regard these economies, not as rows of figures but in terms of the sacrifices which will have to be made in the schools and by the local education authorities. I share in principle the feeling with regard to the deficiency grant which has been expressed by the hon. Member for Caerphilly (Mr. Morgan Jones). I shall not see its departure with any tears but I say that to bring such a blow upon the local education authorities so swiftly, without giving them any chance of recouping themselves, is a scandalous injustice to those authorities.

I wonder if the Minister himself understands exactly what this proposal means to the deficiency grant areas. I believe there are many Members here who do not understand its effects and I am certain that the Chancellor of the Exchequer does not understand them fully. The deficiency grant is paid in respect of those areas where the formula will not bring in the 50 per cent. of approved expenditure which the Section of the Act gives them by right. When we look at the proposal in the White Paper it does not seem to be such a big cut. It is a cut of £1,450,000 on a total expenditure of £66,290,000 but that is an expenditure from which salaries and costs of pensions have to be subtracted and when these are subtracted we find that this is a reduction on £21,270,000 or a reduction of about 7 per cent.

Viscountess ASTOR

Which all of you agreed to.


I am very sorry that the Noble Lady should continue to interrupt.

Viscountess ASTOR

I have not been interrupting.


What I want to tell the Noble Lady quite fairly and courteously—I would extend to her a courtesy which is very often not extended to me in this House—is that if the whole of our Front Bench had been found sitting on that side, she and her friends opposite would still have found a firm, united, and determined opposition from the party to which I belong. That reduction in the deficiency grant is a reduction which is confined to 71 areas only. Those 71 areas unfortunately will have to suffer a reduction of grant, as my right hon. Friend has said, of something in the region of 21 per cent. In London it is 23 per cent., and in some other areas it is an even bigger percentage of loss that they will have to suffer. If one could retain one's sense of humour at a time like this, one might gain a little amusement from the reflection that out of those 71 areas, at least 75 Parliamentary representatives on the opposite benches are in this House, and they are nearly all Tory areas; only 16 of them are represented by Labour Members.

I notice that the Noble Lord went to speak at Hastings the other night. I wonder if he explained to them how the loss of the deficiency grant will act on the rates of Hastings? Then there are the hon. Member for Eastbourne (Mr. Marjoribanks) and the right hon. and gallant Member for Brighton and Hove (Major Tryon), and others. I wonder if they have told their constituents how the loss of this deficiency grant is going to raise their rates by 4d., 5d. and 6d.? But being Tory areas, being Tory local education authorities, I do not think the rates will go up very much. Most of the Tories keep the rates down—at any cost. Let me tell the right hon. and hon. Members opposite how one Tory borough proposes to keep the rates down because they have lost a deficiency plant of £16,587. These suggestions were put forward, not by the chairman of the education committee, but by the chairman of the finance committee. This loss of deficiency grant will be in excess of a fourpenny rate. These are the suggestions which we must consider: Giving up evening play centres"— I hope the Noble Lady will note that— keeping myopic children in the ordinary schools instead of sending them to a special school for myopic children, appointing no new teachers"— I hope the Minister will take note of that— reducing the present staff. My hon. Friend raised the whole question of unemployment. It is not what the Board of Education will save, but what will actually take place in the areas— reducing the present staff, reducing the cost of medical services"—

Viscountess ASTOR

I do not believe in medicine myself.


It goes on: economising on books, apparatus, and equipment, reducing expenditure on mentally defective children. There is a dose of medicine for the Noble Lady! It is a cataract of humbug when Noble Lords and Noble Ladies and hon. and right hon. Members say that this will not affect the education services of our country. What tosh! It is reducing the very life-blood of the services, and they have not cared what part is to be cut.

Viscountess ASTOR

That is not true.

10.0 p.m.


They have not cared what part of the education services has to be cut, and that is the result of the economies suggested by the May Report and the economies adopted by the Government, which they are now going to force on 71 areas in this country. I shall take every opportunity to make it known in those Tory areas, that hon. and right hon. Members opposite approve of these economies, which will either raise their rates to an extraordinary height or force them to ruin the educational services. The other grant, as has already been explained to-night, is a grant which will reduce the education facilities in the year 1932. I mainly want to point to the loss of 50 per cent. on building grant. That was a grant offered by the late Labour Government to the local education authorities, in order to help those authorities to realise the ideals of the Noble Lord. I agree with the Hadow Report, as the Noble Lord very well knows, which is an entirely different thing from the central schools. [Interruption.] Well, now, be sensible! I want to make this point of explanation to the Noble Lord. I lament that he should have confused Hadowism, as he realises it in the Hadow Report, with the central schools, which were opposed by the National Union of Teachers. He knows very well that it is a totally different thing.


I said nothing about the National Union of Teachers. [HON. MEMBERS: "You did!"] I did not. I said that the whole central school idea was opposed by the Labour party, which would not have anything but secondary schools. I was not talking about the National Union of Teachers. They are much more sensible than the Labour party!


Whether it was the Labour party or the National Union of Teachers does not vitiate my argument to the Noble Lord, which is that the central schools, opposed both by the National Union of Teachers and by the Labour party, were a totally different thing from the ideals outlined in the Hadow Report. [Interruption.] I see that the Parliamentary Secretary is itching to get up, so we will finish this argument outside. The philosophy of the Noble Lord is in absolute contradiction to the philosophy of the Minister—at least, the philosophy of the Minister when he sat on this side of the House. I hope that he has not the same chameleon-like texture of many other Liberals in the House. I hope that since he has crossed the Floor he has not also suffered a sea-change in regard to his philosophy on education. The Noble Lord believes that when the rate of accumulation of capital in this country is slowing down, we must not, indulge in such long-term investments as education. The philosophy of the Minister, expressed less than two years ago in this House, was that undoubtedly the best interest of the nation is the well-being of its childhood, not, looking four or five years ahead, but taking the long view of the effective existence of the nation itself.

I hope that that is the view which the Minister, in spite of the great difficulties he must encounter, will persist in pushing among other Members on the Front Bench. I believe implicitly that the betrayal of the children of this country is the betrayal of the nation itself; that the little children are being made to pay twice, as they must pay twice, for they are to he starved in their bodies because of the poverty of their parents and the abominable cut in unemployment pay, and now you are to make them pay a second time by starving their minds. Ever since 1918 you have sacrificed the children and put them in the front firing line, and the people who do it call themselves the patriotic party.


I wish to put the case as briefly, temperately and as fairly as I can for a large body of teachers whose interests have hardly been mentioned. I refer to the Scottish teachers. I wish to put some questions to the Secretary of State for Scotland, who may not have an opportunity to-night of replying, but who may take some other means of giving a reply. The economy cuts in teachers' salaries take effect in Scotland as in England. When the original proposal of 15 per cent. was made, there was natural feeling of resentment against unfair treatment, but since the amended cut of 10 per cent. has been introduced, the teachers have felt, not any sense of gratitude, but a certain feeling of relief; and the charge of unfairness no longer stands in so far as they have now been placed on the same footing as other services. Those who are connected with the teaching services in Scotland are proud that, while the teachers felt a sense of grievance and unfair treatment, they conducted themselves in speech and language with dignity and restraint. That has been freely admitted by the Press, the education authorities and the Education Department itself.

The methods of salary payments in England and Scotland differ very widely. The application of the 10 per cent, reduction may be made quite simply in England because they have only four standard scales; whereas in Scotland they have a, multiplicity of scales. There is a minimum national scale to which authorities can add such sums as they please. The possibility is that in making the reduction, great unfairness may be perpetrated quite unwittingly by the local authorities. It, has therefore been suggested that if this cut is to operate fairly, there should be some standardisation of salaries at some particular date. Salaries just now are made up of two parts—the obligatory minimum national scale and the addition made thereto by the authorities. There has been a tendency of late to cut some of these salaries.

Some have already been cut, and after this percentage reduction has been made owing to the economy campaign, it will still be open to the authorities to indulge in further cuts. It may be said, and I believe it to be true, that the majority of authorities will recognise their obligation to the teachers and will seek to cut fairly. But there are other authorities of whom so much cannot be said. We have had indicated already that some authorities, under the shelter of this economy campaign, are cutting the teachers much more than can be considered fair. So far as we can, we shall prevent that. Therefore, I should like the Secretary of State for Scotland to give a specific answer to this question. Is it not possible under the Order-in-Council which is proposed in this Bill, that salaries should be standardised as at 1st January of this year and that only the percentage reduction allowed by the Government should apply to these salaries, because, if the authorities go beyond this reduction and add to it by the powers conferred upon them under the Act of 1918, there will be in Scotland not only a feeling of injustice and unfair treatment, and of different treatment as between one locality and another, hut a feeling of unrest and uncertainty, which must destroy in a large measure the work of the schools.

A second question is how these reductions are to be effected in Scotland, whether by Order-in-Council or by the operation of Section 6 of the Act of 1918. The Secretary of State might be good enough to tell us which method he prefers, and why he prefers it. I do not think it would be fair to enter upon any long arguments in favour of one course or another, but I ask the Secretary of State to be very careful when carrying out his plans that he does not increase injustice and so do harm to what he believes to be a great service.


I rise towards the end of one of the most, interesting Debates we have had on education to encourage the Secretary of State to explain to the Committee and people of Scotland how these drastic economies will affect education in Scotland, because its administration is under two different Departments, and the laws of Scotland concerning education administration differ vastly from those of England. Even so far as teachers' salaries are concerned, the hon. Member for the Scottish Universities (Mr. Cowan) made plain the great distinction there is between the two countries. One point which I wish to emphasise was not mentioned by him. Unjust as the treatment of teachers may be in England, the proposals are grossly unjust in their application to Scottish teachers, because during the last two or three months there has been a cut of approximately 10 per cent. in the salaries of between 35 and 40 per cent, of the teachers in Scotland, and if the new cut of 1U per cent. is applied to them, it will mean a reduction of 20 per cent. in their cases.

But I do not want to emphasise too much the question of teachers' salaries, for the simple reason that already it seems to have obliterated the general question of educational efficiency, particularly in Scotland. The people of Scotland are entitled to know the exact amount of the economics to be effected—not economies, but reductions in necessary education expenditure. I think I can give the figures roughly. I assume that the reduction in grants for Scotland as a result, of the reduction in teachers' salaries England will be approximately £600,000. I assume that in the other expenditure on which you are going to economise, Scotland's share will be approximately £172,000. The economy on secondary education—though that is a tragic word to use in so far as secondary education is concerned—will amount in England to about £720,000, so that our share of this alleged economy will be about £100,000. As regards the abolition of the 50 per cent. minimum grant., Scotland's share will be approximately £199,000. If my arithmetic is right—and it may be wrong, because, as I have told the House, I had to leave school at 13, seeing that they would not let me leave at 12—Scotland's share of the reduction in expenditure on education will be approximately £1,050,000.

How will this affect education generally in Scotland? We cannot give effect to some of the proposals made in the May Report unless we not merely change the methods but completely change the law of Scotland regarding the provision of secondary education for each child. Under Section 6 (1, a) of the Act of 1918 the local authorities are required to prepare a scheme for the adequate provision throughout the education area of the authority of all forms of primary, intermediate and secondary education. At present every boy and girl in Scotland able to benefit by secondary education must be provided with that education free of charge. Am I to understand that those who cheered what was admitted in the Scottish Press to be the most revolutionary speech in the interests of education delivered by my right hon. Friend when he was submitting the Education Estimates on the last occasion are now prepared to see a Minister from the Liberal party—and from the Highlands of Scotland too—give up our right of free secondary education for the children of Scotland? If they are not, then it means that they are bound to take these additional alleged economies from the backs of the taxpayers and place them on the backs of the ratepayers. Might I suggest to the Scottish Education Department that they might follow the procedure which has been adopted in England, and issue a circular to the local education authorities in Scotland asking them not to go in for panic economies? I think it is far more necessary to urge the local education authorities in scotland to apply the powers which they already possess; in fact, I think it is necessary to compel some of the more reactionary local education authorities to provide adequate and decent accommodation for the children.

Duchess of ATHOLL

I do not think it is hardly fair to the Scottish county councils for the hon. Member to make charges of that kind, when there will be no opportunity for hon. Members to answer them.


I am prepared to repeat those charges, and I am also prepared to give the names of the schools if necessary which have already been described in reports as being unfit for habitation so far as the education of the children are concerned. I shall be prepared to meet the Noble Lady the Member for Perthshire (Duchess of Atholl) or anyone else and defend the charges which I have made. I will not proceed any further with that argument, because I wish to give the Secretary of State for Scotland time to reply to the Debate. I know that the county council of Fifeshire has adopted a policy in regard to education as niggardly almost as Perthshire. [Interruption.]

Duchess of ATHOLL

On a point of Order. I would like to ask you, Mr. Chairman, if the hon. Member is entitled to apply such terms to local authorities?


I did not hear any expression which was out of order.


What is now proposed means economies at the expense of the education of the children, degrading education, starving our children, neglecting to provide the accommodation required for education purposes, and in many cases refusing to supply free books. By the adoption of these proposals we are sacrificing many of the things which we have spent a lifetime in securing for education, and this is being done by a combination of Liberals and Tories who are supporting proposals to reduce the standard of education.


I listened with interest, but I must confess with impatience, to the speech of the hon. Member for Peebles (Mr. Westwood), and I think it is perhaps a little unfair to suggest that I was reluctant to come to this Box and reply. On the contrary, I was anxious to have an extra minute or two. In the time at my disposal I cannot reply to all the controversial points which have been raised, much as I should have liked to do so; I can only give to the House, and through the House to the country, as quickly as I can, some of the main facts of the Government's proposals so far as they relate to education in Scotland, taking the hon. Member's points mainly—I cannot deal with them all—as being those in which the Members of the Opposition are interested.

In the first place, I am certainly grateful to the hon. Member for giving me the opportunity of giving to my Scottish colleagues the assurance that there is no question of interfering with free secondary education. Then the hon. Member asked me about the actual amount of the economies. The amount of the economies is £350,000 in the remaining part of this year, and £800,000 in a full year—not quite so bad as he anticipates. But, as the House knows, and as my Scottish colleagues, at any rate, know, the system of grants in Scotland is different from that in England. In England, percentage grants are paid on the expenditure of the different services, but in Scotland there is a block grant, paid according, first, to the number of pupils, and, secondly, according to the number of teachers; and from the total sum of that grant is subtracted the yield of a 5d. rate.

The actual differences made by our proposals are as follows. Whereas the sum payable in respect of each scholar or student is now £4 15s. 6d., it will be, under our proposals, £4 11s.; and the sum paid in respect of each teacher will he reduced from £123 15s. to £117 15s. The rough effect of these proposals on the block grant to be received by each education authority is that, whereas under the original 15 per cent. proposal the block grant would have been reduced by one-sixth, under the present proposal it will be reduced by one-ninth. We have managed, by the good will which has been shown, in a really statesmanlike spirit, by the local authorities—a good will which has been won, as my bon. Friend the Member for the Scottish Universities (Mr. Cowan) said, by the dignity and restraint with which the Scottish teachers have conducted their side of this controversy—we have managed, by the good will and statesmanship shown on both sides, to reduce the amount by which the national minimum scale will be lowered to one-twelfth.

My hon. Friend the Member for the Scottish Universities referred to the case of those teachers who are above the national minimum scale. We propose to appeal to the local authorities, and we are, as my hon. Friend suggested, issuing a circular to them. I cannot give its terms in the time at my disposal, but it draws the attention of the local authorities to the importance of these teachers' claims, and also to the claims of that other class of people to which both hon. Members drew attention, who have recently been subjected to cuts; and the most important cases we have received, I do not quite say assurances, but information, that the cases of these teachers shall be dealt with in a broad-

minded way by the local authorities-concerned. On the general question of education, in this statement we remind authorities that at this critical time it is not proposed to withdraw any feature of the educational provisions contained in the Statute, but that the Government contemplate that the existing facilities should be generally maintained; and when this time of trial and stress and emergency has been passed through, we on these benches contemplate the resumption of the advance in education which has always been a primary object of our policy.

Question put, "That the word "Education" stand part of the Schedule."

The Committee divided: Ayes, 290; Noes, 240.

Division No. 494.] AYES. [10.30 p.m.
Acland-Troyte, Lieut.-Colonel Chapman, Sir S. George, Megan Lloyd (Anglesea)
Ainsworth, Lieut.-Col. Charles Christie, J. A. Gibson, C. G. (Pudsey & Otley)
Albery, Irving James Church, Major A. G. Gillett, George M.
Alexander, Sir Wm. (Glasgow, Cent'l) Clydesdale, Marquess of Gilmour, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir John
Allen, Sir J. Sandeman (Liverp'l., W.) Cobb, Sir Cyril Glyn, Major R. G. C.
Allen, Lt.-Col. Sir William (Armagh) Cockerill, Brig.-General Sir George Gower, Sir Robert
Amery, Rt. Hon. Leopold C. M. S. Cohen, Major J. Brunel Graham, Fergus (Cumberland, N.)
Ashley, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Wilfrid W. Colfox, Major William Philip Granville, E.
Astor, Maj. Hn. John J. (Kent, Dover) Colman, N. C. D. Grattan-Doyle, Sir N.
Astor, Viscountess Colville, Major D. J. Gray, Milner
Atholl, Duchess of Conway, Sir W. Martin Greene, W. P. Crawford
Atkinson, C. Cooper, A. Duff Grenfell, Edward C. (City of London)
Baldwin, Rt. Hon. Stanley (Bewdley) Courtauld, Major J. S. Gretton, Colonel Rt. Hon. John
Balfour, George (Hampstead) Courthope, Colonel Sir G. L. Griffith, F. Kingsley (Mlddiesbro W.)
Balfour, Captain H. H. (I. of Thanet) Crichton-Stuart, Lord C. Gritten, W. G. Howard
Balniel, Lord Cranborne, Viscount Gunston, Captain D. W.
Beamish, Rear-Admiral T. P. H. Croft, Brigadier-General Sir H. Hacking, Rt. Hon. Douglas H.
Bellairs, Commander Carlyon Crookshank, Capt. H. C. Hall, Lieut.-Col. Sir F. (Dulwich)
Berry, Sir George Croom-Johnson, R. P. Hamilton, Sir George (llford)
Betterton, Sir Henry B. Culverwell, C. T. (Bristol, West) Hamilton, Sir R. (Orkney & Zetland)
Bevan, S. J. (Holborn) Cunliffe-Lister, Rt. Hon. Sir Philip Hammersley, S. S.
Birchall, Major Sir John Dearman Dalkeith, Earl of Hanbury, C.
Birkett, W. Norman Dairymple-White, Lt.-Col. Sir Godfrey Hannon, Patrick Joseph Henry
Blindell, James Davidson, Rt. Hon. J. (Hertford) Harbord, A.
Boothby, R. J. G. Davies, Dr. Vernon Hartington, Marquess of
Bowater, Col. Sir T. Vansittart Davies, E. C. (Montgomery) Harvey, Major S. E. (Devon, Totnes)
Bowyer, Captain Sir George E. W. Davies, Maj. Geo. F.(Somerset,YeovIl) Haslam, Henry C.
Boyce, Leslie Davison, Sir W. H. (Kensington, S.) Henderson. Capt. R. R. (Oxf'd,Henley)
Bracken, B. Dawson, Sir Philip Heneage, Lieut-Colonel Arthur P.
Braithwaite, Major A. N. Denman, Hon. R. D. Hennessy, Major Sir G. R. J.
Briscoe, Richard George Despencer-Robertson, Major J. A. F. Hills, Major Rt. Hon. John Waller
Broadbent, Colonel J. Dixey, A. C. Hope, Sir Harry (Forfar)
Brown, Col. D. C. (N'th'I'd., Hexham) Dixon, Captain Rt. Hon. Herbert Hore-Beiisha, Leslie
Brown, Brig.-Gen.H.C.(Berks,Newb'y) Duckworth, G. A. V. Horne, Rt. Hon. Sir Robert S.
Buchan, John Dugdale, Capt. T. L. Howard-Bury, Colonel C. K.
Buchan-Hepburn, P. G. T. Eden, Captain Anthony Hudson, Capt. A. U. M. (Hackney,N.)
Bullock, Captain Malcolm Edmondson, Major A. J. Hurd, Percy A.
Burgin, Dr. E. L. Elliot, Major Walter E. Hurst, Sir Gerald B.
Burton, Colonel H. W. Elmley, Viscount Hutchison, Maj.-Gen. Sir R.
Butler, R. A. England, Colonel A. Inskip, Sir Thomas
Butt, Sir Alfred Erskine, Lord (Somerset,Weston-s.-M.) Iveagh, Countess of
Cadogan, Major Hon. Edward Everard, W. Lindsay Jones, Llewellyn-, F.
Caine, Hall-, Derwent Falie, Sir Bertram G. Jones, Sir G. W. H. (Stoke New'gton)
Campbell, E. T. Ferguson, Sir John Jones, Henry Haydn (Merioneth)
Carver, Major W. H. Fielden E. B. Jones, Rt. Hon. Leif (Camborne)
Castle Stewart, Earl of Fison, F. G. Clavering Jowitt, Rt. Hon. Sir W. A. (Preston)
Cautley, Sir Henry S. Foot, Isaac Kedward, R. M. (Kent, Ashford)
Cayzer, Sir C. (Chester, City) Ford, Sir P. J. Kindersley, Major G. M.
Cayzer, Maj. Sir Herbt. R.(Prtsmth,S.) ForestierWalker, Sir L. Knight, Holford
Cazalet, Captain Victor A. Fremantle, Lieut.-Colonel Francis E. Knox, Sir Alfred
Cecil, Rt. Hon. Lord H. (Ox. Univ.) Galbraith, J. F. W. Lamb, Sir J. Q.
Chadwick, Capt. Sir Robert Burton Ganzoni, Sir John Lane Fox, Col. Rt. Hon, George R.
Chamberlain, Rt.Hn. Sir J. A. (Blrm..W.) Gault, Lieut.-Col. A. Hamilton Law, Sir Alfred (Derby, High Peak)
Chamberlain, Rt. Hon. N. (Edgbaston) George, Major G. Lloyd (Pembroke) Leigh, Sir John (Clapham)
Leighton, Major B. E. P Peake, Capt. Osbert Smithers, Waldron
Lewis, Oswald (Colchester) Penny, Sir George Snowden, Rt. Hon. Philip
Little, Graham-, Sir Ernest Percy, Lord Eustace (Hastings) Somerset, Thomas
Llewellin, Major J. J. Perkins, W. R. D. Somerville, A. A. (Windsor)
Locker-Lampsen, Rt. Hon. Godfrey Peters, Dr. Sidney John Somerville, D. G. (Willesden, East)
Locker-Lampson, Com. O.(Handsw'th) Peto, Sir Basil E. (Devon, Barnstaple) Southby, Commander A. R. J.
Lockwood, Captain J. H. Power, Sir John Cecil Spender-Clay, Colonel H.
Long, Major Hon. Eric Pownall, Sir Assheton Stanley, Lord (Fylde)
Lovat-Fraser, J. A. Purbrick, M. Stanley, Hon. O. (Westmorland)
Lymington, Viscount Pybus, Percy John Stewart, W. J. (Belfast, South)
McConnell, Sir Joseph Ramsay, T. B. Wilson Stuart, Hon. J. (Moray and Main)
MacDonald, Malcolm (Bassetlaw) Ramsbotham, H. Sueter, Rear-Admiral M. P.
Macdonald, Sir M. (Inverness) Rawson, Sir Cooper Taylor, Vice-Admiral E. A.
Macdonald, Capt. P. D. (I. of W.) Rold, David D. (County Down) Thomas, Rt. Hon. J. H. (Derby)
Maclean, Sir Donald (Cornwall, N.) Remer, John R. Thomas, Major L. B. (King's Norton)
Macpherson, Rt. Hon. James I. Rentoul, Sir Gervals S. Thompson, Luke
Macquisten, F. A. Reynolds, Col. Sir James Thomson, Sir F.
Mailland, A. (Kent, Faversham) Rhys, Hon. C. A. U. Thomson, Mitchell-, Rt. Hon. Sir W.
Makins, Brigadier-General E. Richardson, Sir P. W. (Sur'y. Ch'ts'y) Titchfield, Major the Marquess of
Mander, Geoffrey le M. Roberts, Sir Samuel (Ecclesall) Todd, Capt. A. J.
Margesson, Captain H. D. Robinson, Sir T. (Lanes, Stretford) Train, J.
Marjoribanks, Edward Rodd, Rt. Hon. Sir James Rennell Tryon, Rt. Hon. George Clement
Markham, S. F. Rosbotham, D. S. T. Turton, Robert Hugh
Mason, Colonel Glyn K. Ross, Ronald D. Vaughan-Morgan, Sir Kenyon
Merriman, Sir F. Boyd Rothschild, J. de Wallace, Capt. D. E. (Hornsey)
Millar, J. D. Ruggles-Brise, Colonel E. Walters, Rt. Hon. Sir J. Tudor
Milne, Wardlaw-, J. S. Russell, Alexander West (Tynemouth) Ward, Lieut.-Col. Sir A. Lambert
Mitchell, Sir W. Lane (Streatham) Russell, Richard John (Eddisbury) Waterhouse, Captain Charles
Monsell, Eyres, Com. Rt. Hon. Sir B. Salmon, Major I. Wayland, Sir William A.
Moore, Lieut.-Colonel T. C. R. (Ayr) Samuel, A. M. (Surrey, Farnham) Wells, Sydney R.
Morris, Rhys Hopkins Samuel, Rt. Hon. Sir H. (Darwen) White, H. G.
Morris-Jones, Dr. J. H. (Denbigh) Samuel, Samuel (W'dsworth, Putney) Williams, Charles (Devon, Torquay)
Morrison, W. S. (Glos., Cirencester) Sandeman, Sir N. Stewart Wilson, G. H. A. (Cambridge U.)
Muirhead, A. J. Sassoon, Rt. Hon. Sir Philip A. G. D. Windsor-Clive, Lieut.-Colonel George
Nail-Cain, A. R. N. Savery, S. S. Winterton, Rt. Hon. Earl
Nathan, Major H. L. Scott, James Wolmer, Rt. Hon. Viscount
Newton, Sir D. G. C. (Cambridge) Shakespeare, Geoffrey H. Womersley, W. J.
Nicholson, O. (Westminster) Shepperson, Sir Ernest Whittome Wood, Rt. Hon. Sir Kingsley
Nicholson, Col. Rt.Hn.W.G.(Ptrsf'ld) Simms, Major-General J. Wood, Major McKenzie (Banff)
O'Connor, T. J. Simon, Rt. Hon. Sir John Young, Rt. Hon. Sir Hilton
Oliver, P. M. (Man., Blackley) Sinclair, Rt. Hon. Sir A. (Caithness)
Oman, Sir Charles William C. Skelton, A. N. TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—
Ormsby-Gore, Rt. Hon. William Smith, Louis W. (Sheffield, Hallam) Sir Victor Warrender and Mr. Glassey.
Owen, Major G. (Carnarvon) Smith-Carington, Neville W.
Adamson, Rt. Hon. W. (Fife, West) Chater, Daniel Hell, G. H. (Merthyr Tydvll)
Adamson, W, M. (Staff., Cannock) Clarke, J. S. Hall, J. H. (Whitechapel)
Addison, Rt. Hon. Dr. Christopher Cluse, W. S. Hall, Capt. W. G. (Portsmouth, C.)
Alexander, Rt. Hon. A. V. (Hillsbro') Clynes, Rt. Hon. John R. Hamilton, Mary Agnes (Blackburn)
Alpass, J. H. Cocks, Frederick Seymour Hardie, David (Rutherglen)
Ammon, Charles George Compton, Joseph Hardle, G. D. (Springburn)
Angell, Sir Norman Cove, William G. Hastings, Dr. Somerville
Arnott, John Ciipps, Sir Stafford Haycock, A. W.
Attlee, Clement Richard Daggar, George Hayday, Arthur
Ayles, Walter Dallas, George Henderson, Joseph (Ardwick)
Baker, John (Wolverhampton, Bliston) Dalton, Hugh Henderson, Thomas (Glasgow)
Baldwin, Oliver (Dudley) Davies, D. L. (Pontypridd) Henderson, W. W, (Middx., Enfield)
Barnes, Alfred John Davies, Rhys John (Westhoughton) Herriotts, J.
Barr, James Day, Harry Hicks, Ernest George
Batey, Joseph Dukes, C. Hirst, G. H. (York W. R. Wentworth)
Beckett, John (Camberwell, Peckham) Duncan, Charles Hirst, W. (Bradford, South)
Bennett, William (Battersea, South) Dunnico, H. Hoffman, P. C.
Benson, G. Ede, James Chuter Hollins, A.
Bevan, Aneurin (Ebbw Vale) Edmunds, J. E. Hopkin, Daniel
Bowen, J. W. Edwards, E. (Morpeth) Horrabin, J. F
Bowerman, Rt. Hon. Charles W. Egan, W. H. Hudson, James H, (Huddersfield)
Broad, Francis Alfred Evans, Capt. Ernest (Welsh Univer.) Isaacs, George
Brockway, A. Fenner Forgan, Dr. Robert Jenkins, Sir William
Bromfield, William Gardner, B. W. (West Ham, Upton) John, William (Rhondda, West)
Bromley, J, Gardner, J. P. (Hammersmith, N.) Johnston, Rt. Hon. Thomas
Brooke, W. Gibbins, Joseph Jones, J. J. (West Ham, Silvertown)
Brothers, M. Gibson, H. M. (Lanes, Mossley) Jones, Morgan (Caerphilly)
Brown, C. W. E. (Notts., Mansfield) Gill, T. H. Jowett, Rt. Hon. F. W.
Brown, Rt. Hon. J. (South Ayrshire) Gossling, A. G. Kelly, W. T.
Brown, W. J. (Wolverhampton, West) Gould, F. Kennedy, Rt. Hon. Thomas
Buchanan, G. Graham, Rt. Hon. Wm (Edln., Cent.) Kenworthy, Lt.-Com. Hon. Joseph M.
Burgess, F. G. Greenwood, Rt. Hon. A. (Colne) Kinley, J.
Buxton, C. R. (Yorkt. W. R. Elland) Grenfell, D. R. (Glamorgan) Lansbury, Rt. Hon. George
Cameron, A. G, Griffiths, T. (Monmouth, Pontypool) Lathan, G. (Sheffield, Park)
Cape, Thomas Groves, Thomas E. Law, Albert (Bolton)
Carter, W. (St. Pancras, S.W.) Grundy, Thomas W. Law, A. (Rossendale)
Charleton, H. C. Hall, F. (York, W.R., Normanton) Lawrence, Susan
Lawrie, Hugh Hartley (Stalybridge) Naylor, T. E. Snowden, Thomas (Accrington)
Lawson, John James Noel Baker, P. J. Sorensen, R.
Lawther, W. (Barnard Cattle) Noel-Buxton, Baroness (Norfolk, N.) Stamford, Thomas W.
Leach, W. Oliver, George Harold (Ilkeston) Stephen, Campbell
Lee, Frank (Derby, N.E.) Palin, John Henry. Strauss, G. R.
Lee, Jennie (Lanark, Northern) Paling, Wilfrid Sullivan, J.
Leonard, W. Palmer, E. T. Sutton, J. E.
Lewis, T. (Southampton) Parkinson, John Allen (Wigan) Taylor, R. A. (Lincoln)
Lloyd, C. Ellis Perry, S. F. Taylor, W. B. (Norfolk, S.W.)
Logan, David Gilbert Pethick-Lawrence, F. W. Thorne, W. (West Ham, Plaistow)
Longbottom, A. W. Phillips, Dr. Marion Thurtle, Ernest
Longden, F. Picton-Turbervill, Edith Tillett, Ben
Lunn, William Pole, Major D. G, Tinker, John Joseph
Macdonald, Gordon (Ince) Potts, John S. Tout, W. J.
McElwee, A. Price, M. P. Townend, A. E.
McEntee, V. L. Quibell, D. J. K. Trevelyan, Rt. Hon. Sir Charles
McKinlay, A. Rathbone, Eleanor Turner, Sir Ben
MacLaren, Andrew Raynes, W. R. Vaughan, David
Maclean, Nell (Glasgow, Govan) Richards, R. Viant, s. P.
MacNeill-Weir, L. Richardson, R. (Houghton-le-Spring) Walkden, A. G.
McShane, John James Riley, Ben (Dewsbury) Walker, J.
Malone, C. L'Estrange (N'thampton) Riley, F. F. (Stockton-on-Tees) Wallace, H. W.
Manning, E. L. Ritson, J. Watkins, F. C.
Mansfield, W. Romeril, H. G. Watson, W. M. (Dunfermline)
March, S. Rowson, Guy Watts-Morgan, Lt.-Col. D. (Rhondda)
Marcus, M, Samuel, H. Walter (Swansea, West) Wellock, Wilfred
Marley, J. Sanders, W. S. Welsh, James (Paisley)
Marshall, Fred Sandham, E. West, F. R.
Mathers, George Scrymgeour, E. Westwood, Joseph
Maxton, James Scurr, John Whiteley, Wilfrid (Blrm., Ladywood)
Messer, Fred Sexton, Sir James Whiteley, William (Blaydon)
Middleton, G. Shepherd, Arthur Lewis Wilkinson, Ellen C.
Mills, J. E. Sherwood, G. H. Williams, David (Swansea, East)
Milner, Major J. Shield, George William Williams, E. J. (Ogmore)
Montague, Frederick Shillaker, J. F. Williams, Dr. J. H. (Llanelly)
Morgan, Dr. H. B. Shinwell, E. Williams, T. (York, Don Valley)
Morley, Ralph Short, Alfred (Wednesbury) Wilson, J. (Oldham)
Morrison, Rt. Hon. H. (Hackney, S.) Simmons, C. J. Wilson R. J. (Jarrow)
Morrison, Robert C. (Tottenham, N.) Sinkinson, George Wise, E. F.
Mort, D. L. Sitch, Charles H. Young, R. S. (Islington, North)
Mosley, Lady C. (Stoke-on-Trent) Smith, Ben (Bermondsey, Rotherhithe) Young, Sir R. (Lancaster, Newton)
Muff, G. Smith, Frank (Nuneaton)
Muggeridge, H. T. Smith, Lees-, Rt. Hon.H.B.(Keighley) TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—
Murnin, Hugh Smith, Tom (Pontefract) Mr. Charles Edwards and Mr. Hayes.

Motion made, and Question, "That the Chairman do report Progress, and ask leave to sit again," put and agreed to.—[Sir B. Eyres Monsell.]

Committee report Progress; to sit again To-morrow.

The remaining Government Orders were read, and postponed.