HC Deb 30 January 1941 vol 368 cc678-9
69. Mr. Lipson

asked the President of the Board of Education whether he can make a statement of the purpose and progress of the discussions that have been taking place between representatives of the Board of Education and of the public schools?

Mr. Ramsbotham

No discussion is taking place between my Department and the Governors of public schools, nor have I been approached by the schools in the matter. Certain informal discussions have, however, been held locally at which members of the local education authority and individual governors and headmasters of public and secondary schools have examined possible ways in which the independent boarding schools could be brought into closer association with the State system of education and could make further contributions towards the welfare of young people in their localities. In some cases officers of my Department have participated in these discussions at the invitation of those who initiated them.

Mr. Lipson

Will the House be informed of the results of those informal discussions?

Mr. Ramsbotham

I am carefully considering the matter, but the stage for formal discussions has not yet been reached.

Sir Percy Harris

Will the right hon. Gentleman consider the advisability of appointing a Royal Commission or some influential committee to inquire into the whole position of public schools in future?

Mr. Ramsbotham

That had better be considered if and when formal discussions take place.