HC Deb 28 March 1944 vol 398 cc1264-311
Sir John Mellor (Tamworth)

I beg to move, in page 45, line 42, at the beginning, to insert: Except as regards any school which ceased to receive grant direct from the Board of Education during the years nineteen hundred and twenty-two to nineteen hundred and twenty-six, inclusive. I am asking my right hon. Friend to give effect to a pledge which was given by the Board of Education about 20 years ago, to over 200 grammar schools. At that time, these schools were persuaded to give up receiving capitation grants direct from the Board of Education, and to take, instead, deficiency grants from the local education authorities. The pledge which they were given was that if they took that course they would not lose status thereby. I understand that there is no dispute that the pledge was given, but it may be suggested that after a lapse of 20 years the pledge has grown a little stale. Twenty years may seem a fairly long time in the history of such comparatively modern excrescences as the Board of Education, and local education authorities, but, none the less, it is but a short time in the life of many of these schools, which have been conducting education in this country for the last 400 or 500 years or more—centuries before the State took the slightest interest in education. In the memory of these schools, that pledge is still fresh. If fees are to be prohibited in the case of these schools, nothing but their endowments will stand between them and domination by the local education authorities. Up to now, their relationship with the local education authorities has been determined entirely by negotiations. My right hon. Friend, on previous days when we have discussed this Bill, has drawn a very pretty picture of the aided status. He has endeavoured to persuade us that the aided status is one flowing with milk and honey. Whether that be true or not, it does not meet the case of these schools, because most of them, even if they desired to adopt aided status, would not be able to afford to do so if they were deprived of their fees. Most of them, if they have to rely entirely upon their endowments, will have to accept controlled status—a very different state of affairs. Therefore, if they are deprived of the right to charge fees, their status will be drastically affected and lowered. That is why I claim that they should be excluded from the operation of Clause 59; otherwise, the pledge will be broken.

My right hon. Friend may, perhaps, contend that the contract is no longer binding, that the new set-up, or lay-out or whatever one could call it, of education is going to create an entirely different state of affairs never contemplated at the time the contract was entered into. I do not accept teat as a sufficient reason for contravening the pledge, but, if it be accepted by the Committee, then I say we should call the whole thing off and these schools should be given the option of returning to the direct grant status. Which is the Minister going to do? Is he going to permit these schools to continue to charge fees by excluding them from the operation of Clause 59, or is he going to let them return to direct grant status? It is a very grave position for these schools, and, if my right hon. Friend fails to help them in one of these two ways, many of them may decide to become independent, in which case they will have to raise their fees. That will be a most unhappy thing and will be very unfortunate for the boys whose parents are not very well off. On Clause 16, the Minister gave us to understand that we should hear something to our advantage on Clause 93, but Clause 93 is in the bush, and I think that we should be very ill-advised to yield on Clause 59 unless we are told exactly what we are going to find in that bush. These schools have an ancient and honourable tradition of sturdy independence. They are com- pletely democratic, because, in them, boys whose parents can pay fees and boys whose parents do not pay fees mix together upon absolutely equal terms. These schools have strong family associations. Generation after generation have continued the same family attendances. They have a national character; indeed, I can say that boys come to these schools from the uttermost parts of the Empire to be educated where their fathers and grandfathers were educated before them. They, therefore, provide a powerful source of Imperial strength, and I submit that these assets should not lightly be discarded.

Sir Patrick Hannon (Birmingham, Moseley)

I put my name to this Amendment because I am very much concerned, with my right hon. Friend opposite, that the continuity of the prestige, dignity and associations of these schools should be preserved. I observed that the Minister in his speech on the Second Reading of the Bill, undertook to deal with these matters on Clause 93. I would only say at the moment, in support of what my hon. Friend has said, that it would be a great misfortune if the associations of these schools, which have a long history, were attacked by the operation of this Bill, and if the schools were detached from the associations they have had with the development of our Colonial Empire. I hope that the Minister will look into this point, and not place these schools, under the operation of the Bill, in such a way as to lower their status and deprive them of that long tradition of character which they have had for so many years. These schools started in the dark ages of the past, and it would be a great misfortune if anything were done to deprive them of the place they occupy in our educational system.

The President of the Board of Education (Mr. Butler)

The Government could not undertake to accept this Amendment. The issue really is a very narrow one on this Amendment, and I hope the Committee will not confuse it with the general issue which we shall be discussing shortly. I do not say it is not an important one, and the hon. Member who moved it has been very pertinacious in trying to put his case before the Committee, and I congratulate him on getting in now before we get to Clause 93. I can give him the answer here just as well as on Clause 93. What is the position? The hon. Member suggested that we should omit from the purview of this Clause certain schools which made a certain option between 1922 and 1926. These schools were given the option, first, of becoming direct grant schools, or, second, of receiving their assistance through the authority. The hon. Member says that, at that time, certain pledges were given to these schools, and he has used the most definite language to-day implying that there might be an attempt to break that pledge. I must say, equally categorically, that in my opinion, having examined the papers, no pledge in the terms he has described was actually given. I can describe the position in my own way, and then he can see that the situation is not, perhaps, so grim and serious as he thinks.

What was the position at that time? Certain schools attracted the attention of the Geddes Committee, who animadverted upon the fact that voluntary grammar schools received a Parliamentary grant from the Board and that the local authorities received grants from the Board on any assistance which they gave to those schools. In the view of the Committee that involved a duplication of Exchequer grants, and in view of the findings of the Committee it was thought wise that the situation should be remedied and that these particular schools should be given a choice either (1) to continue to receive their grants direct, in which case any assistance given by a local authority would not rank for the Board's grant, or, alternatively, to cease to receive direct grant from the Board and to receive all their assistance from public funds through the authority. That was the choice given to these voluntary grammar schools. Some of them opted for direct grant and others opted to receive their moneys through the authorities.

The hon. Member has claimed that a definite pledge was given to those receiving their money through the authorities that their status would not be affected. I can find no undertaking in the Circular, No. 1259, which was sent out to them on 2nd May, 1922, which bears the interpretation he has placed upon it. Conversations took place at the same time and I have examined the records of those conversations, and it appears that the most that these people were led to understand was that, as far as the Board was concerned, they would not have their status and independence affected by the particular manner in which they received their aid from public funds and that the Board would, as heretofore, continue to deal with them direct. At the same time it was made absolutely clear to them that the local education authorities were under no legal obligation to help them, and that if they did so they could attach such conditions as they thought fit to their assistance, because that is the normal association between local authorities and schools. Therefore, if one looks at the matter from the point of view of the dignity of these schools, it is true to say that we always anticipated that those who opted to receive their moneys from public funds through the local authorities would not have their position and dignity altered, and to that position we adhere, but it does not mean that we have said we could in no way govern the association between the authorities and these schools.

What is the issue before the Committee? The Board has acted in perfect good faith in this matter. Why, therefore, does the hon. Member raise this question to-day? He raises it because, if I am interpreting him correctly, he is anxious that some of these schools may have to opt for controlled status because of their financial position, and also anxious that some of them, even though they could opt for aided status, might prefer to revert to the direct grant list. Perhaps the best consolation I can give the hon. Member is this, that, as I shall show later in the course of our main discussion upon Clause 59, the direct grant list of the future will have to be worked out, and the Government are willing to give guidance to the Committee and to the country as to the principles which govern them in making up that new list. The terms and conditions of those entering into it will have to be laid down. It may well be possible that at that time some of these schools would be able to re-exercise their option and revert again to the direct grant list. I will not go into that further to-day, but that will show the hon. Member that the situation is not entirely closed. As for the others, I pray and beseech the hon. Member not to imagine that because a school does opt for aided status its independence or general position is any less than that of any other school. In passing this great Measure of reform I think it most important that we should give a proper dignity to the aided school, and association with an authority is not something which any governors of any school would be likely to under-estimate. I believe these schools will find they are treated with just as much dignity in their relations with the Board and just as much dignity in their own districts if they become aided schools. The opportunity may well be given to them to become direct grant schools. As to the few who have to opt for controlled status because of their financial position, the option offered them is in my opinion a much better one than has been appreciated. There is nothing in it which derogates from the dignity or independence of the school. It simply means that it has to depend to a greater extent for its finance upon the authority and if some of them do elect for that option I would not regard that as constituting a breach of confidence or of faith. In any case I would prefer that they should opt for the situation they prefer. I must say that I think the hon. Member has done a service in raising the position of these schools, and I hope that I have done a service in clearing up the point that no pledge has been broken, nor was their any intention to introduce any uncertainty into their future. I hope, too, that I have shown that in the secondary world, when we have worked out the future, these schools will be able to adopt the status which they most desire.

Earl Winterton (Horsham and Worthing)

It might be useful if I were to say a word or two, in supplement of what the right hon. Gentleman has said, as representing the views of a considerable number of aided schools, namely, the aided schools in the London area. I am a member of the association of London aided schools, which consists almost entirely of either governors or chairmen of schools and representatives of religious bodies. We have put down Amendments to various parts of the Bill, one or two of which have already been accepted while others have been rejected, but we did not think it necessary to associate ourselves with this particular Amendment, very largely for the reasons mentioned by my right hon. Friend. I do not wish to enter into controversy with my hon. Friend the Member for Tamworth (Sir J. Mellor), but I would say that there is a good deal of authoritative opinion which supports the President of the Board in the statement he has just made.

Captain Cobb (Preston)

May I ask the noble Lord whether any of those schools which he represents were direct grant schools before 1922?

Earl Winterton

I could not say that without inquiring of the whole of the London aided schools.

Sir William Davison (Kensington, South)

I rise only to emphasise a point with regard to direct grant schools. I dislike very much the suggestion that they would lose their dignity, because I do not think that is a term which is in any way applicable to them. What they are afraid of, so far as I understand it—and I have been associated with schools of this kind for many years—is that they will lose some of their independence. In my view there ought to be in the schools of the country some power to experiment with various types of education, and if they are all controlled by the local authorities that power to make experiment, that curtailment of independence, will be very detrimental to the general education of the country. In the discussion on primary schools it was claimed again and again, mostly from the other side of the Committee, that those who pay the piper are entitled to call the tune, and that is the underlying fear of those who desire to maintain what they had before under direct grant status. They do not want to become more and more of a particular pattern of maintained schools. I say again that it is not our dignity with which we are concerned but the fear of becoming stereotyped in our curricula and restricted in our freedom to make experiments. As the hon. Member for Tamworth (Sir J. Mellor) pointed out, these schools are invaluable in the democratic outlay of the country. In schools of this type with which I have been associated there are a large number of pupils from the elementary schools—in some cases they make up to about 50 per cent. of the school—and there is no feeling of antagonism or differentiation between pupils who do not pay fees and pupils who pay fees. I think it is a valuable thing that boys from elementary schools should mix on a common basis with the sons of parents who are better off and who pay fees.

Mr. Messer (Tottenham, South)

I do not think it is fair to let the speech of the hon. Member for South Kensington (Sir W. Davison) pass without a reference to something he said in regard to experimentation. Apparently the hon. Member is quite unaware of some of the things being done by schools under local authorities. A great deal of experimental work is being done. I could take him to senior boys' schools under local education authorities where the education is on the lines of the Dalton plan, an experiment which has been highly successful. I only mention this because it would be wrong for an impression to go out to the country that schools under a local authority cannot indulge in exactly the same experiments as he referred to in connection with independent schools.

Sir W. Davison

I quite agree that local authorities are making experiments but they are not as free to make experiments which may possibly be failures as independent or semi-independent schools. As an example, in one such school with which I was associated the headmaster established years ago with great ultimate success the heuristic teaching of science, which probably might not have been approved by the local authority in a controlled school.

Mr. Cove (Aberavon)

On a point of Order. Are we going to have a general discussion on this Amendment, because if so I and others would like to join in? The subject opens up a large area and I was wondering upon what Amendment we should get the main discussion.

The Chairman

It would be better to take the main discussion upon the next Amendment, which raises the whole question, but upon the understanding that that discussion is not repeated upon the question of the Clause standing part of the Bill.

Mr. Cove

I have an Amendment following that upon which, if it is called, we should desire, I think, to divide the Committee. Is it possible for us to have an assurance that we shall be able to divide upon that Amendment?

The Chairman

In the ordinary way the Committee can divide upon any Amendment called.

Mr. Cove

If it is called.

Sir Richard Wells (Bedford)

I desire to support what was said by the hon. Member who moved the Amendment, because I think there is something of great value in these aided schools which we are in danger of losing. After the Minister's speech I think encouragement should be given to these schools if they wish to become direct grant schools, and if that is so the position will have been met very largely, because the direct grant schools do form a bridge across the gulf between the council schools and the independent schools.

Sir J. Mellor

While I am grateful to the President of the Board for the very careful reply which he has given, I am sorry that he was unable to give a more positive assurance. My anxiety was to secure that these schools should be no worse off in the future, having opted as they did, than they would have been had they opted in 1926 for direct grant. I was only anxious to secure that their position was not prejudiced by making the choice they did on the assurance given to them at that time. I do not think there is much between my right hon. Friend and myself with regard to the terms of the pledge. There is no doubt that these schools did act upon a pledge, that their choice was influenced by it, whatever may have been its precise terms. That being so, I do not think the future of these schools ought to be prejudiced by the decision which they took at that time.

Amendment negatived.

Mr. Cove

On a point of Order. I want to be perfectly clear that my Amendment will be called, because on that a wider issue is raised. On that, we might want to divide.

The Chairman

I propose to call the hon. Member's Amendment.

Mr. Silkin (Peckham)

I beg to move, in page 45, line 43, after "any", to insert "primary or secondary."

This proposal has a narrow import and also a wider one and I should like to deal first with the narrow aspect of it. It provides that secondary education should be free, and therefore excludes other types of schools. The Amendment is intended to do so because there is a type of school, such as the London School of Printing or the School of Arts and Crafts, which nobody suggests should be entirely free and those words are therefore put in as limiting words in the first instance. It also raises, perhaps, the most fundamental question of educational policy in the Bill. Clause 59 provides that no fee shall be charged in respect of maintained secondary schools, but if it remains as it is, it will permit the continuation of the charging of fees in assisted schools and in direct grant secondary schools. In these schools the vast majority of the children—possibly 75 to 90 per cent.—are admitted because their parents are able to buy a place for them at the school. The parents can buy this place, not by paying the cost of the education, but by paying, on an average, about one-third of the cost. The remainder of the cost is provided either by endowments—which were not intended for the children of the better off but for children generally or, in some cases, for the poorer children—and also by grants from the Exchequer and, in some cases, also from local authorities.

By buying a place in such a school an abler child, whose parent is not in a financial position to pay fees, may be excluded and may, therefore, be compelled to go to another school which will be less suitable for his particular abilities and qualifications. Paragraph 20 of the White Paper confirms everything that I have said so far. Indeed, it says: The conditions attending the admission of children to the various forms of post-primary education present some disquieting features. Those are my right hon. Friend's own words. He ends the paragraph by saying: A system under which fees are charged in one type of post-primary school and prohibited in the other offends against the canon that the nature of a child's education should be determined by his capacity and promise and not by the financial circumstances of his parent. The Clause as it stands continues the disquieting features to which my right hon. Friend refers in Paragraph 20 of the White Paper, and it also offends against the canon which he himself has laid down. Evidently my right hon. Friend wanted some guidance on the matter of the abolition of fees in direct grant schools, and, therefore, on 7th November, 1942, he asked the Fleming Committee to consider, as a matter of urgency, the question of the abolition of fees in grant-aided secondary schools. They considered the matter for some six months and then decided, by 11 votes to seven, in favour of the abolition of fees in grant-aided secondary schools as a whole. I do not propose to traverse the field of the very interesting arguments which were put forward both by the majority side of the Committee and by the minority side, but I was very impressed by the argument that now that secondary education is to be universal and compulsory, the charging of fees in some schools and not in others becomes anomalous. It appears as incongruous, as if fees were to be charged in some elementary schools to-day and not in others. My right hon. Friend will know that until elementary education became free, compulsory and universal, fees were charged. Fees ceased to be charged, at the time when education became compulsory and universal.

It is important to remember that in some cases the only secondary schools for a long time to come in certain areas will be direct grant schools and in these areas there will be no free secondary education for large numbers of children. I admit that it will be possible, if conditions remain as they are, for between 10 and 25 per cent, of children to receive free places in such schools, but the vast majority of the children in such schools will be fee-paying children. They will possibly exclude other children who are in greater need of the education and who would benefit more from it.

Mr. Kenneth Lindsay (Kilmarnock)

Will the hon. Member give an example where that would happen?

Mr. Silkin

I suggest to my hon. Friend that if he will take the interim Report of the Fleming Committee he will find in the Appendix a list of 232 schools. If he looks through them he will find a good many in that position and the majority Report actually says that is the case—that in some areas the direct grant school is the only school. I do not think there can be any doubt about the fact; it is vouched for by the Committee itself. Moreover, fees will not therefore be payable in aided schools, but the distinction between the rate-aided and the direct grant school is frequently impossible to discover, and my hon. Friend who moved the last Amendment made that point pretty strongly himself. In fact, the whole position as to whether a school is a direct grant school or a rate-aided school is based, as the interim Report says, on a fortuitous decision made in 1926, without regard to educational requirements. It is based on what happened to suit the particular school financially, and, may I say, on the whims and ideas of the governors who happened to be in charge at that particular time. Some of them, obviously, made a mistake because they have apparently asked that an Amendment should be moved to enable them to change their minds.

In spite of that fact, the cleavage is going to remain between the two types of secondary schools. Some schools, in fact, are both direct-grant schools and rate-aided schools and they, even more than others, will find themselves embarrassed by the fact that they will have to continue to charge fees. Why does the President of the Board reject the advice which was given to him by the majority of the Committee? It seems to me that up to the time of the issue of the White Paper on education, he was still in agreement with the majority of the Committee. What has happened since then to make him change his mind? The White Paper, as I read it, actually accepted the views of the majority of the Fleming Committee and rejected the views of the minority. I should be very interested to learn why my right hon. Friend has changed his mind. After all, the Members of that Committee carried a great deal of weight educationally. The Headmaster of Charterhouse and the Headmaster of Hele's School, Exeter, and the Headmistress of Roedean and others were members of the Committee—ladies and gentlement, may I say, whom one would not assume to be predisposed in favour of the abolition of tuition fees in secondary schools. They also included representatives of the Universities of Oxford and Wales and formed a very weighty educational majority.

Sir P. Hannon

I apologise for interrupting the hon. Gentleman, but will he give us the names of some of the minority members?

Mr. Silkin

Certainly, I would like to do that. There is the chairman himself, Lord Fleming, Senator of the College of Justice in Scotland—nothing to do with education; Sir Edward Crowe, Governor of the Harpur Trust, Bedford, and direc- tor of various companies. There is the right hon. the Lord Bishop of London. There is the chairman and managing director of Stewarts and Lloyds, another great non-educational authority. There is a member of the Governing Bodies' Association and late Vice-Chancellor of Sheffield University. There is the Secretary of the Governing Bodies' Association of Girls' Public Schools and the headmaster of Nottingham High School. I would submit that if you weigh up those who were in the majority against those who were in the minority, on educational grounds there can be no doubt whatever that the majority carries far more weight, far more guns on education.

Captain Cobb

Could my hon. Friend say whether a solicitor is qualified to lay down the law on education?

Mr. Silkin

Not as well as some others I have read. I am not in a position to know my hon. and gallant Friend's occupation. What is the case against the abolition of fee-paying schools? One argument put forward was that it would create anomalies between the independent and the direct grant school. I am prepared to agree that some anomalies would be created until my right hon. Friend deals with the independent school, which he has promised to do. But by retaining the present position, the anomalies are far greater because you have the same types of schools, in both of which fees have in the past been charged, and once this Bill is passed, the fees will be abolished in some but will remain in others. Is it a question of cost? The interim Report gives the cost of abolishing the fees in direct grant schools as £1,100,000. This is not a very considerable sum compared with the ultimate cost of education in this country of over £200,000,000 and an ultimate increase over former expenditure of nearly £80,000,000. The sum of 1,100,000 is very small and out of all proportion to the value of this proposition, psychologically and otherwise, to the nation. I believe that in the long run, by providing every child with the education which is suited for it, and by thus using every secondary school place to the best advantage, and in the most efficient way, we shall be effecting an economy.

The present system of educating children merely on the basis of the ability of their parents to pay is wasteful of central places; it is not using those places to the best advantage. Our education system should be fairer and more efficient. This question is the true touchstone of all our professions about education. Do we really believe in education, and in giving our children an equal opportunity of education of the very best? All this education is on the basis of privilege. Is it to continue as something which can be bought and sold to the highest bidder? I believe that the vast majority of hon. Members in this House, if they were free to decide, and certainly the majority of the vast public outside, would want education to become democratic and available to all on equal terms. That is the case which we on this side of the Committee are putting, and that is the justification for the Amendments that are being put forward.

Mr. Lindsay

I rise to try to put the case—which is not a very easy one to put—on the other side. This issue goes very deep and raises questions which affect not only the maintained and direct grant schools, but the public schools, as they are called, and independent schools themselves which do not come within the scope of this Bill. The Fleming Report makes frequent reference to them and it is impossible not to mention them. What are the facts? There are 773 maintained schools in this country, 339 auxiliaries and 232 of the direct grant schools, to which my hon. Friend has made reference—about 1,400 in all, and one-sixth of them or very nearly are direct grant schools. The fees vary from £4 10s. to £75 and in the direct grant schools, contrary to the figure which my hon. Friend has mentioned, 66 per cent. of the pupils actually pay fees, and at a fairly high level. It is true that the majority of these schools receive some local authority assistance, in the shape of either bursaries or grants. If we analyse the three types of school, it will be observed that, if we abolish fees as proposed, the total cost to the country would be about £3,500,000, but over £1,200,000 will come from these direct grant schools. The reason for that is, obviously, that there is a high percentage of fee-payers in them. There does seem to be a confusion of principle, and I want to raise two principles with my right hon. Friend.

The hon. Member for Peckham (Mr. Silkin) has stated one principle, but there is a second one. His principle is that, if you compel a child to attend school, the education rate should, with State assistance, bear the total cost. I prefer to put it that way. They say that it is free. It is not free. Everybody has to pay for it through the rates. That is a common and a perfectly sound principle. Once you compel a child to receive it, you have to make it free to all. A second principle has crept into this, which is different, that, when the State assists a school, or a child to attend a school, the quantity of public money should involve some control over accessibility. My right hon. Friend, in his Second Reading speech, on 19th January, used the word "accessible"—these schools should be "accessible". I would like him, in replying, to define what he means by "accessible". Education, like taxis or stalls in a theatre, is accessible if you have the money with which to pay.

Viscountess Astor (Plymouth, Sutton)

Not now.

Mr. Lindsay

In peace time. But there is another sense in which he might have meant to use the word "accessible," and that is "equality of access." This bears very much on other questions. Christ's Hospital is very often quoted, and I want to remind hon. Members that the standard of examination for Christ's Hospital is very stiff, and it is only the top boys from the London County Council schools who go to that school and survive the test. I want a merit test, plus means test, for this higher type of education. There is the example of Russia, which has recently attached, at the age of 15, a merit, plus means, test for all children who are to have education after the age of 15. I want to ask my right hon. Friend the Minister why he changed his mind, or why he did not accept the Majority Report of the Fleming Committee. There are very good reasons for not accepting it, but I want to know what his reasons were and on what basis he is constructing the system of secondary education?

I suppose that the Committee realise the position with regard to unreorganised schools in London—and there are 35,000 children in such schools at the moment. Every unreorganised or senior school will be called a secondary school immediately this Bill is passed. It will be on the same footing as the beautiful new senior school, the junior technical school, St. Dunstan's, University College School, direct grant schools like Blundells or Manchester Grammar School; that unreorganised school will be exactly on the same footing as Manchester Grammar School, which, for several hundred years has been winning scholarships to Oxford and Cambridge, and which has an entirely different intellectual basis, and is in fact doing a different job. The word "secondary," which had a qualitative meaning, has come to mean something which comes after primary. I was rather attacked by the hon. Member for Aberavon (Mr. Cove) the other day on this, but I want to see a genuine and free primary and secondary system in this country. When hon, Members opposite voted the other day I could not help having in mind that a large number of hon. Members opposite came from schools quite outside the scope of this Bill. I want to see a genuine system of primary and secondary education which will make it unnecessary, in respect of any child in this country, to have to pay the large sums of money which parents choose to pay at the present moment in order to send their children to such schools. The reason why I am very nervous about this particular type of school—and I disagree with my hon. Friend—is that, inevitably, you are going to widen the gap between the schools which are going to be called free State-secondary schools and private or independent schools.

There is another reason. History has shown that as the State system has grown, so also has the independent system of schools grown in number. That happened between the wars, and it is happening to-day. There are new independent schools growing up, and there are waiting lists for those schools. I am not going to praise the people who do it. They may do it for what are commonly called, snob reasons. I am only quoting figures and facts, but it is the fact that, with the growth of freer secondary education, there has been almost an equal growth of independent schools outside. The problem of the "two nations" to which my right hon. Friend has been referring in speeches up and down the country, is not going to be healed by many things in this Bill. [Interruption.] I hope the Noble Lady will not interrupt, because this is a point that has to be thrashed out.

Viscountess Astor

I really am getting a little tired of this. Every time anybody gets into a jam he turns towards me and says "I hope the Noble Lady will not interrupt." I am really getting a little weary; I often get publicity for things that I do not deserve and I am tired of it.

Mr. Lindsay

I may get into a jam in a minute—at the moment I am not in it—and shall be very glad of the help of the Noble Lady. Another reason why I want to put this case before the Committee, is that we cannot afford, as a nation, in future, to waste ability wherever it is to be found in the country. We have to discover and select, not by eliminating but by giving different opportunities and paths in the secondary field. If that is true, more and more the State is bound to be determining national need. The scientific workers of the future, teachers, engineers, and doctors will, I am afraid—or perhaps I should say, I am rather glad—in some ways, more and more need State assistance if we are to open out the professions to really poor boys. It is impossible in this country, unless you have something like £1,000 or happen to win one of the very few bursaries, to get into the medical profession; you cannot do it unless you have enough money. One of the reasons why people go into teaching and the Civil Service is because there is no premium required. Generally speaking, you can go through free and get into fairly safe jobs, with pensions, too.

It is all the more important that we must have some selective principle at work in our education. If you are going to pay for people to go to the university at 16 or 17 years of age, you ought to be able to justify that expenditure of public money. If you are to justify that expenditure, you must have a proper selective basis at some time in the adolescent years. I believe that the direct grant schools in the past have been doing that job. Ideally, I would like to see a type of school introduced by my right hon. Friend which would be so good that, as in parts of America, it would be extremely expensive to start, a private school alongside a State school. But it has to be borne in mind also that, even in that country, there has been a new crop of very expensive private schools along the sea border, in the last 20 or 30 years. Therefore, you do not get rid of this problem simply by saying, "Let all the children come to the same schools under the local authorities." I say nothing whatever against the kind of provision which London, for instance, is making and the assistance which London gives to its aided secondary schools.

I want to ask my right hon. Friend one question on that point before I leave it. Take a school in London which in the past has been aided. It has some endowment and now it is almost bound to have to give up its fees. That school in the past, I have heard from one headmaster, has been able to "combine education, freedom from public control, choice of school by the parents, choice of pupil by the school, in a very happy degree." Is there going to be that same choice? I know that choice. People can spend £200 a year on the education of their children but I am not interested in them, nor is this Bill. I am interested in those who spend £9 or £10 a year, or the average figure for this country, 11 guineas a year. I notice that some of my friends who are so eloquent in urging the doing away with this particular type of school have themselves chosen to spend their money—and they are entitled to do it—to the extent of perhaps, to quote two examples, of £45 in the one case, and £80 in the other, on the education of their children. They may well say, "We must take what is going; when the new system comes in everything will be different." But what guarantee is there? They exercised a choice—£45 worth of choice. I have in mind another man, not a Member of this House, who is always talking on this question and whose son went to an excellent direct-grant school at a cost of £40 for fees and £80 for boarding, a total of £120. Have we come to the point where you can spend money on everything except a slightly better education for your child? I should have thought that that was one of the best ways in which parents could exercise their responsibility.

Now to come to the more subtle question of how we are to deal with this special type of school. I noticed that "The Economist," the other day, speaking of the grammar schools, said: It would be regrettable if this were to be tempered with other purely ideological reasons. In the rest of the article it commented on the fact that while you are able to pay for a boarding-school education you are not allowed to pay fees. If you pay fees, plus board, and send your child away to the country nobody says anything, but if you want to pay fees without boarding it is impossible. The Fleming Report says—and here I must enter a censure against the Government—

Mr. Cove

I am not quite clear about this. Is my hon. Friend subject to some confusion or am I? Boarding schools may be entirely provided and financed by private money. We are concerned with schools financed either partially or totally by public money.

Mr. Lindsay

I am glad my hon. Friend referred to that because I was about to say it. The Fleming Committee were asked to report and my hon. Friend will see that the minority Report says: We think it regrettable that it has been found necessary to ask us to give an opinion on the question of the abolition of tuition fees in isolation from other matters referred to the Committee. The majority Report says: In compiling this Report dealing with the specific aspect of our problem, we have inevitably been compelled to encroach on a field of our general inquiry. In the time so far available to us we have not yet had an opportunity of considering more than part of the evidence bearing on the problem and we must hold ourselves free to review, and, if necessary, to revise, any conclusions we have reached in so far as they affect the general question referred to us. The Minister may say that he wanted the Committee's views on the question of fees and he is entitled to have them, but I want to say that their view is not a complete view. I want to put forward what is, I think, a more constructive policy. Our job in Committee on this Bill is to build bridges across the chasms between the aided and maintained and the grant-aided and public schools. That is why some of us, a few weeks ago, pressed for articles of government. That is why some of us have attacked the virtual monopoly of posts for public schools, which still obtains in the Foreign Office and elsewhere. You must clip the wings at the other end. You can prevent certain avenues of employment tending to be rather closed for a special group of schools but that must be dealt with outside this Bill. There is one other thing which the Minister has not done: he has not abolished the dual system. The real reason why we have not better senior schools to-day is because we have the frightful problem of building up Church schools to the level of amenities of the beautiful new senior schools which can be found in some parts of the country. The only way the Minister will get an improvement in the situation, is by making the public system so good that it will not be worth while parents spending money on the independent system. I see no other answer.

All our energy should be spent, in this Bill, on levelling up. The only way to do that is to have more teachers, better teachers, better pay, and a higher proportion of staff to pupils. Until you have done that I do not see why you should bring down the level of a group of schools which have achieved a certain standard. It is an excellent standard. Scholastically, no one can quarrel with the Manchester, Bradford or Wolverhampton Grammar Schools; they are doing a good jab. Why say to 66 per cent. of the parents, "You can no longer pay fees?" Is it because you must have a general egalitarian principle running through the country?

Earl Winterton


Mr. Lindsay

The Government must not be surprised if we try to produce a much better education in our primary and secondary schools. In some parts of the country it is now obligatory for parents to spend extra money on education, and this is having some effect on the birthrate, although I do not want to argue that in detail here. In so far as the Bill contributes to that radical improvement of primary and secondary education it will lessen class distinction; incidentally, children themselves care very much about this distinction. I was at Christ's Hospital last week, and I was saddened to see children, who could not afford the coupons, having to do without the usual costume. It always was impossible to tell the difference between the various classes of children who wore a common uniform, and enjoyed that bracing atmosphere, for four or five years. Remember, these children do pay something. I know that the view I am taking is not a popular view and that it is not an argument against free secondary education. In the next five or ten years we shall make our secondary system of education a real thing, and I hope that by that time the Minister will obtain men and women from universities who will become graduate teachers. That is what we want. Through the organisation which my hon Friend the Member for Aberavon represents here, they will apply to the senior schools that type of teacher. When you have the teachers, the amenities and the ratio of staff to pupils that justifies a sound system of education, do not let us then make any distinctions between direct-grant schools, aided schools, maintained schools or anything else.

I want to make a request to the Minister. In connection with the direct-grant schools I want him to apply the 100 per cent. special place system to them. No child will go into these schools unless it passes the proper examination; no child will be debarred because of inability to pay fees, but at the same time those who can afford the fees, £10, £15,£20 or £30, will have an equal opportunity. Those who can afford full fees will pay, and those who cannot, will do it on a graduated scale. If the Minister does that, he will make it easier to bridge the gap between ordinary secondary schools and independent schools. I hope the time will come when these schools, too, will find their place in the national system. If my right hon. Friend does not, then he will damage secondary education; he will not make it easier for the child to get more secondary education than it can get to-day. If he takes this opportunity he will be doing something which will be a genuine benefit to the future of secondary education.

Mr. Cove

We have listened to an exhaustive and erudite speech by my hon. Friend the Member for Kilmarnock (Mr. Lindsay). I would not claim to have my hon. Friend's knowledge of the educational system of this country but for a long time I could not make up my mind where he stood. At one time I thought he was what we call in Wales, Shôni bob mân a phob ochr, which means on both sides of the fence. I was not clear whether he wanted the field of secondary education to be completely free or whether he wanted to maintain certain citadels of privilege. But in the end it became clear that my hon. Friend stood for privilege, for the schools which in need and in body are the symbol of social class distinction. He was standing by and in favour of the schools which, throughout our history, have been centres of educational reaction. There is no edu- cational building in the history of our grammar schools, of which it can be said it has contributed towards new ideas, the breaking of new ground and educational progress. The fact is that if there is any criticism of the municipal secondary schools, it is that they have been too prone in their curricula and outlook to aid the grammar schools. The grammar schools have deflected the secondary schools from the paths they ought to have taken. I have before me the Spens Report. No one would accuse the Master of Corpus Christi, with which I gather my hon. Friend is associated—

Mr. Pickthorn (Cambridge University)

I had better warn the hon. Member that not only I, but two other persons are present who are associated with it, and therefore he had better be careful.

Mr. Cove

I would not accuse the Master of Corpus Christi of being a revolutionary.

Mr. Pickthorn

Yes, I should.

Mr. Cove

All I can say is that the hon. Member is a very funny fellow. This is what the Spens Report says: The static condition of the education given in most of the Public Schools and Grammar Schools down to 1840 or even later was largely due not only to the predominant influence of the two old Universities, but also to the fact that they were endowed foundations. I hope the Committee will note that. Few institutions are so proof against change as foundations supported by endowment, and consequently to a great extent independent alike of external control and popular demand. Thus, till the middle of the nineteenth century the endowed schools of England and Wales were, for the most part, in a backwater, and their pious founders determined from the tomb their studies and their methods of instruction, long after changes in the circumstances of the districts or of the pupils had made the founders' statutes inappropriate, or the development of educational theory had rendered them obsolete. Now on purely educational grounds I say that it would be an excellent thing for the direct grant schools—the grammar schools if I may use a common term—to come completely within the national system of education. Here in the Spens Report is the evidence of the complete remoteness, as far as education is concerned, of these schools. Latin and Greek, the Classics, taught generation after generation. Why? [An HON. MEMBER: "Why not?"] Because these schools did not justify themselves and owe their existence to their educational quality and to the educational service they rendered to the nation. Quite frankly, I say to the Committee, and I raise the issue quite clearly and distinctly, that they persisted, because they served a narrow, privileged class in our society. The preservation of fees in our secondary system is the preservation of schools for parents who can afford to pay for that education, independent of, or apart from, whether the children can profit by that education or not. Why, even "The Economist"— and "The Economist" is not a revolutionary paper, unless my hon. Friend likes to take up the point also—the other day pointed out that this nation, and this nation alone in the world, provides two systems of education, one for the rich and one for the poor—

Mr. Pickthorn

So does Russia.

Mr. Cove

I will deal with Russia in a minute, but I do not want to be deflected from what I am saying. I say again that the continuation of fees in these direct grant-aided or assisted schools is a mistake. It would be a good thing if the right hon. Gentleman could clear up the whole field and explain what is going to be free. There is a great deal of confusion about what is an assisted school, and so on, but I do not want to go into detail. I am dealing with the broad principle, and I say that as a matter of high social democratic policy we ought to sweep the field clean throughout the whole State system. You cannot have an integrated national system of education if in a part of the field there are free schools and in another part there are fee-paying schools. How can you have a national system on that basis? The Spens Report refers even to that, and says that what we want is parity of esteem. We want school A to have an equal status with school B. In this Bill the right hon. Gentleman says that all schools, for those above the age of 11 plus, are to be secondary schools, but it is a long way from a mere change of nomenclature to a real secondary system, and within that secondary system we want school A to be of equal status with school B. That will not happen if direct grant-aided schools are able to charge fees.

Mr. Pickthorn

Why not?

Mr. Cove

Because they will be the schools of the people who can afford to pay. It is inevitable. Why are Eton and Harrow so much regarded?

Mr. Pickthorn

Because they are very good schools.

Mr. Cove

No, it is because of their history. You cannot divorce a school from its social implications. After all, a school is a social institution directly related to social policies, social conditions and social aspirations. It is no good trying to burk the issue. If we have some of these schools still paying fees, then it is quite clear they will be regarded with higher esteem than other schools, and that they will be regarded as having a higher social status. I know what is happening even now under the threat of this Bill. There is a famous public school in London just outside the purview of being free, where applications are crowding in at this moment. The fees will go up. The smaller you make the area of the fee-paying schools, the more select they become. Hence I say quite definitely that, as a matter of educational policy and practice, as a matter of national policy, and in order to get social integration and national unity, we ought to break down every barrier within our educational system that even smells of class privilege.

It is perfectly true that you cannot get a democracy merely by democratising your, educational system, but it is equally true that you cannot get democracy without it. If you are to have a real democracy, you must have a democratic educational system. I hoped, therefore, that the Minister would sweep the public system completely of all fees. We hear the argument that we want to preserve variety, freedom of experiment, and so on. But anybody who studies the history of these schools will find that that is not their justification at all. The State school has introduced a hundred times more experiment into the educational sphere than have the grammar schools. If you read our educational history, you will find that it is the national system of education, publicly owned and publicly controlled, that has made innovations in education. It is not the local education authorities who have tied the hands of grammar schools. Anybody who knows the practice of local educational authorities will realise that they give prestige, dignity and freedom to the publicly-owned local authority secondary schools. Certainly it is not the public authority that has imposed the incubus of the School Certificate examination on the secondary schools. If anybody has tied the secondary system in this country in the past, it is the Board of Education through its regulations.

I do not fear this return to democracy. The secondary school teachers of this country are in favour of this. My hon. Friend disputed that with me across the Floor of the House the other day, but I have here this week's copy of "Education" which contains an article by Sir Percival Sharp. I am not going to quote what he writes but what he quotes from the Memoranda on the Education Bill issued by the Incorporated Association of Assistant Masters in Secondary Schools. They say: This Association wishes to make the strongest possible representation that the appointment and dismissal of teachers in all county and auxiliary schools should be under the control of a local education authority. That is involved in the question now before us. Where you get fees, you get the autonomous control of governors and of headmasters, and I say that it is a good thing for the profession, and for education itself, that that control should pass over to the publicly-elected authority and that democracy should be organised in relation to the whole business. I would ask my right hon. Friend whether it is not true to say that, if these schools are left where they are, with privileged places as it were, in the scheme of planned development they will count in a particular area and be regarded as institutions which have been providing the necessary secondary education in that area. If that be so, if the direct grant school is to be counted as if it were a quota, making up the necessary secondary school places in a particular area, it necessarily subtracts from the free places in the others that may be provided by the authority, and this will do an injury to a large number of children.

I see the post-war world as a very difficult world. I believe we shall be very much poorer. I do not believe you can have four or five years of war without using up your reserves, both of material and nerve power and even brain power. I remember a paragraph in the Prime Minister's book, "The Great Crisis," in which he described how the nation in the last war was united for victory and united in the hopes of the new world that was to be. But, when the war ended, he said, that "those hopes were doomed to be dashed, because," he asked, "how can you build a new world with 12,000,000 dead"? This war will not have drained us of man-power so much as the last, but it has drained us in other ways. Therefore, in this hard world, where we must inevitably be poorer, we shall want to use and cultivate and develop all the brain power that we can command. We shall want to be a more highly equipped nation technically. We shall not want to be chained to Latin and Greek. We shall not want to be chained to the grammar school tradition. We shall want to enter this new world freer and more adaptable. Behind it all, will be the spirit of unity of the nation, the feeling that we are entering a real democracy. Out of that feeling and that spirit of real democracy we shall have to face our difficulties more boldly, more fearlessly, and more intelligently, and therefore I ask the right hon. Gentleman to send a democratic message to the men and women and boys and girls who are fighting this war that we intend to sweep away, if not the realities, all the symbols of class distinction. Do not let it even be thought that a vestige of class privilege remains in our secondary system. In order to do so, I ask him to sweep away fees and make a freer democratic educational system.

Mr. Lipson (Cheltenham)

I think it would be a great pity if it were to be assumed that the Amendment can only be justified by attacking the grammar school tradition, or by, raising the issue of class versus class. I support the Amendment, but for reasons very different from those of the hon. Member who has just spoken. I support it because I believe in what I understand to be one of the principles of this Bill, that no child shall on account of the financial position of his parents be deprived of his right to secondary education. I mean that there shall not be any distinction drawn as to the kind of secondary education a child shall receive because of the financial position of the parents. It seems to me that, if you have certain schools where the places are necessarily limited, and it is laid down that some of the places shall go to children whose parents can pay fees, obviously you must be excluding other children whose parents cannot pay fees, and it may very often happen that those children are the ones who would benefit more from the education received. The hon. Member for Kilmarnock (Mr. Lindsay) said that the proposal to abolish fees in direct grant schools would bring down the level of the schools. I really cannot follow that argument. How is the educational level of any school affected by the fact that it receives its income from public funds rather than from the fees of parents? Is it the fact that the parents pay fees that makes a school either a good or a bad school? A school's reputation is made by what goes on inside it. The only part that finance plays is that there should be enough money to ensure adequate equipment and staff to enable the school to function properly. With that, the school is made by the headmaster and the staff, and the contribution which they, through their influence, enable the pupils themselves to make to the well-being of the school.

We are concerned to-day apparently with only one-sixth of the secondary schools of the country and the question that I have to ask myself is, Why should different treatment—because that is what is being asked for—be meted out as far as fees are concerned to a sixth of the schools from that which is accorded to the other five-sixths? If there is any real force in the argument of the hon. Member for Kilmarnock, it surely applies also to the maintained schools and to the assisted schools, but apparently he is prepared to accept for five-sixths of the secondary schools, that fees shall not be paid and that their income shall come entirely from public funds, but that it should not apply to the one-sixth. I cannot see any reason why this difference should be made. The hon. Member said that what he wants to bring about is that the public system of education shall be so good that parents will want to send their children only to schools in the public system and not to independent schools. We can all accept that but, if the President of the Board is to bring that about, is he to exclude one-sixth of the secondary schools from his plan and treat them differently from the others? They include schools with great reputations, which in the past have made very great contributions to our educational advance, and we want them to continue to play their part.

At the root of this opposition to the abolition of fees in direct grant schools is really mistrust of local government control. As far as direct grant schools are concerned, I suppose it means also control by the Board of Education. For some reason it is imagined that, if the governors of the school can say, "We have a certain number of boys who pay fees," they will be in a stronger position to resist any encroachment on the part either of the Board of Education or the local authority. As a matter of fact, I do not think they would be. The amount they receive in grant is vital for their existence and, if there is any serious conflict, it seems to me that, unless agreement can be reached, the view of the Board would have to prevail. If public funds are given to any school, or any other institution, the Government or the local authority are quite within their powers in laying down the conditions. Therefore, I think it would be very much better if we could clear away all these suspicions between local authorities and the governors of schools and try to start on the basis that all parties are engaged in a common job and are much more likely to achieve that job if they co-operate. I, therefore, feel that I must support the Amendment. Otherwise I do not see how we can implement the principle that no child shall be deprived of the right to secondary education of the best type for financial reasons. It is very much better to start by bringing all the secondary schools as far as fees are concerned into the same category. There is a great deal of feeling already among some of the maintained schools that their fees should not be abolished before those of direct grant schools. We are told by the critics of the Amendment that we must prevent cleavages, but, in fact, fresh cleavages will be created. I believe it is in the interests of the purpose which the Bill has in mind that the Amendment should be accepted and the issue faced. If, under the Bill, we leave certain schools in an anomalous position, no one can say that that will be the final solution. The matter will be raised again and again, and, while we are doing the job, we had better make a good job of it.

Mr. Pickthorn (Cambridge University)

I am glad the hon. Member for Aberavon (Mr. Cove) has returned to his place. I was a little afraid that his performance had exhausted him. He began by twitting the hon. Member for Kilmarnock (Mr. Lindsay) for making an exhaustive speech, and then proceeded to make a speech of the same length. I should hesitate to award the palm to either, but I am extremely glad to find that the hon. Member far Aberavon has not wholly exhausted himself at any rate. I approach this Debate with a certain diffidence, because of the excessive importance which the hon. Member for Peckham (Mr. Silkin) appeared to attribute to the qualifications that I possess. He read out the names of various gentlemen and to those who have any educational experience at all, he attributed large numbers of very heavy guns, and to those who had not had any educational experience, he attributed the possession of no guns at all, or at best implied that they had nothing but peashooters. I was left almost under the impression that no one was entitled to speak except the hon. Member for Aberavon, the hon. Member for Cheltenham (Mr. Lipson), myself, the Under-Secretary and perhaps two or three others. But really it was very long ago discovered that the best judges of dishes are not the cooks but the diners, and it is a gross illusion to suppose that only schoolmasters know anything about education. It is still worse to suppose that only educational administrators know anything about it.

Mr. Cove

Does an ex-coal miner know anything about it?

Mr. Pickthorn

I have not suggested that one sort of man knows more about it than another. What I have suggested is that the customer is always right. It is for the consumer to judge of these things and not for the producer to say, "I am producing the best education that could possibly be produced, and you jolly well take it." It is a serious weakness in argument, this assumption that persons whose names are known in connection either with education, or schoolmastering, or school management, are, necessarily, better judges of these matters than others. It was to that fallacy that I was trying to allude.

There is another fallacy that has crept into this general argument. That is the fallacy that we are all agreed in wishing to diminish, so far as possible, the importance of class in human life. I do not think I have ever met anybody who would not pay lip service to that, and I do not think that I have met many people who did not honestly believe that the less class element there was in human life, the better. But it is a fallacy to assume that the class element is, necessarily, reduced when you reduce the number of classes, and particularly when the number is reduced to two. It is a great deal better to have a lot of classes than to have only two classes. If you could have what the hon. Gentleman calls an integrated national system of education, and if everybody's place in future life depended wholly upon his success in that system, you would get two classes, the successful and the unsuccessful. I do not think it would last for many years because the unsuccessful would get so sick of the successful that they would arise and kick them to bits.

The Deputy-Chairman (Mr. Charles Williams)

I am very interested in these remarks, but I am not sure that they are relevant. Perhaps the hon. Gentleman will relate them a little more to the Amendment.

Mr. Pickthorn

I think, without a shadow of disrespect, that the Chair has perhaps not had the advantage of hearing the earlier speeches, for what I have said is strictly relevant to the arguments that have been used. The point I am trying to make is that, in general, it is impossible to aim at two classes and that in the educational world it is particularly true that the worst of all results would be to have two sorts of schools, and only two. Nor do I believe that in practice you could ever get down to having only one sort of school. I do not think that it can ever happen in that way. In Russia it has not happened, as I gather from—I think it was—the "Soviet War News" the other day, which told us that if a man won the Order of Suvarov, or the Order of Kutusov, his children could be sure of going to a secondary school for, I think, no fees or reduced fees. There is a good deal of experience that leads us to suppose that we cannot get down to having only one sort of school. I beg the Committee to consider the wisdom of avoiding trying to get down at all costs to exactly two sorts of school. I was struck with one thing that was said by an hon. Gentleman about the average fee in the schools we are discussing. He said it was 11 guineas per annum. An hon. Friend of mine, who is better at arithmetic than I am, worked it out that a family could pay that fee, if each parent reduced his or her consumption of cigarettes by one packet of 20 per week, so that the argument about parents buying places in school, as if it were profiteering and privilege mongering by people who had made enormous fortunes, is very much exaggerated.

Of course, it is true, and nobody believes it more firmly than I do, that, quite apart from all questions of human kindness or anything of that sort, but from the purely economical point of view, it is desirable that every boy or girl should be educated so as to be able to do and to be doing the highest and most advanced sort of work which that particular human material was capable of. I wholly agree with that principle. Incidentally, I am a little surprised that other hon. Gentlemen who agree with that principle also think it right that, in order to save the administration from imputations of unfairness, boys should be directed for coal-mining without any regard being paid to their aptitude for that or for anything else. Where does this principle lead us to? It leads us to this: it should be the business of the local education authority to see that enough education of the sort wanted is provided. If it could be shown that the existence of these schools had in fact prevented the creation of other schools, I could have followed the argument of the hon. Member for Aberavon, but nobody has attempted to show that that is so. If a boy by going to one of these schools, keeps out a poorer boy, it can only be that the public authorities have not done as much in providing secondary education as they might have done, as they should have done, and as it was their duty to do.

We had two strong arguments from the hon. Member for Aberavon in favour of the point I am putting. He said that as long as there was a school at which fees are allowed, that school would be generally regarded as the best school. To use that argument in favour of democracy is a little difficult. The hon. Gentleman will remember the occasion when someone asked Lenin whether the Russian Army had voted for something or other—peace, I think—he said that they had voted with their feet. If it is true, as is generally assumed, that wherever there is a school which collects fees that school is considered the best, that is a strong argument for the view that parents, who after all are the persons most concerned in these matters, and the general public prefer such schools and prefer fee paying; and an argument for the view that we ought not to assume that the whole of society is to be pushed and developed towards the situation in which no man can choose how to spend any of his money and in which everything necessary for him is provided free. The logic of the argument for forbidding fees really takes you to that view. Perhaps it is the right view; hon. Gentlemen opposite may hold that view, but it cannot be the view of the general body of the British public, because if it were the view of any considerable body of the public, it would not be difficult to get parity of esteem between non-fee-collecting schools and fee-collecting schools.

There was another argument in the speech of the hon. Member for Aberavon to which I will refer. He said, contrary to what the hon. Member for Cheltenham (Mr. Lipson) has since assumed, that nobody would deny the immense service performed in the past, and still performed, by these schools, the hon. Member for Aberavon had just denied that with all the vehemence at his disposal, and almost his greatest charge against these schools was that they committed the crime of teaching Latin and Greek, and that it was nonsense to say that they were in any way a guarantee of variety.

Mr. Lipson

I dissociated myself from the attack on the grammar schools.

Mr. Pickthorn

It was not necessary to interrupt me to say that. It is not fair to say that we all admit the immense services of these schools, for the hon. Member for Aberavon denied it, largely on the ground that they taught the classics. There will be serious risk if all schools are wholly dependent on public money or so largely dependent as to be wholly at the public disposal, serious risk that one generation may exaggerate this fashion or that, and leave it riveted on the neck of the next generation. Our generation might exaggerate the importance of the natural sciences, or another might exaggerate something different. It is perfectly clear and undeniable that these schools have performed immense services, and that one is that they are likely to resist fashions more than other schools. That is a fair argument in favour of them, and the denial that they are a guarantee of variety is not an argument to which the Committee should pay attention.

Professor Gruffydd (University of Wales)

I want to bring the Committee to the reality of this Amendment. I agree with what the hon. Member for Cheltenham (Mr. Lipson) said and with a great deal of what the hon. Member for Kilmarnock (Mr. Lindsay) said, although I cannot come to the same conclusions. I happened to be among the majority of the Fleming Committee, but I will not now try to defend our attitude towards the question of fees. I do not think the Committee realises that, whether we abolish fees or not, or whether we allow a system of free places, it makes very little difference. We are told that all post-primary education is to be called secondary and that it will be divided into grammar school type, modern school type and technical school type. The question whether a child shall go to a grammar school, to a modern school or to a technical school must eventually be settled by some form of examination, whether a written examination or a record in school. If we abolish fees in the schools, as is contemplated here, we can only take people in by examination, because a school can take only a certain number of pupils. If, on the other hand, we give free places only, there will still be an examination to find out who is entitled to them, but with this difference: the examination in schools where fees are abolished will be held largely by the school authority, but the examination for free places will be in the form of outside bursaries given by the local education authority, and it will largely be an outside examination. Actually in the end there will be little difference whether we abolish fees or have 100 per cent. free places, except that the examination and the method of choosing boys and girls to go into this type of school is much more satisfactory if we do away with fees altogether.

Mr. Denman (Leeds, Central)

The hon. Member for Aberavon (Mr. Cove), in an aside, invited the Minister to explain clearly what he intended should be done in regard to assisted schools, since the Bill as it stands makes it clear that if any local education authority desires to assist fee paying schools, it can do so, subject to the approval of the Minister. The Minister is empowered in Clause 9 to approve an arrangement in which an assisted school shall be able to charge fees. If that is so, I do not understand a remark of the Parliamentary Secretary that it is the administrative intention that no assisted school should be allowed to charge fees.

The Parliamentary Secretary to the Board of Education (Mr. Ede)

I am not quite sure what the hon. Member's reference is. Could he be a little more particular?

Mr. Denman

It appears in HANSARD, I think in the report of the Debate on Thursday last, although I have not got it with me. On the merits of this question, I broadly agree with the view expressed by the hon. Member for Kilmarnock (Mr. K. Lindsay) that the schools who charge a quite small fee perform a very valuable function and provide a link between the independent schools and the secondary schools which charge nothing at all. If we are to have a clear-cut division between the boarding schools and relatively large-fee charging schools on the one hand, and the completely free schools on the other, I am afraid we shall make a class cleavage far wider than there is at present. The small fee-charging schools bring together different classes of the community in a very happy relationship. We have them in Cumberland, where they provide a most delightful form of social education to all classes of the community, and I should be extremely sorry if they were prevented from carrying on the good work they have hitherto done.

I suggest to the framers of the Amendment that it is premature. I believe that, in good time, what they want will happen, but it will come about by natural evolution. To try to impose it now on our system is premature. When the reorganisation is accomplished, when our senior schools are well established and the school leaving age is up to 16, we shall have the sort of foundation on which a completely free system is possible. We shall, I hope, have attained that excellence in the public system of education which will kill the demand for the fee-paying school, but until we have reached that stage it will be extremely wrong to cut off the present small fee-paying schools and so create an immense chasm between the wealthier schools and the free schools. If the Amendment were worded so as to come into effect on a date hereafter to be decided by both Houses of Parliament, I should agree with it, but I shall vote against it in the form which it now takes.

Mr. Arthur Greenwood (Wakefield)

You have, on occasion, admonished Members of the Committee, Mr. Williams, for going wide of an Amendment. I am bound to say that I have known few Bills on which so many Second Reading speeches have been made during the Committee stage as this. I will try to confine what I have to say to the essential part of the discussion which, as I understand it, covers two Amendments, one moved by my hon. Friend the Member for Peckham (Mr. Silkin) and the other, which is rather wider, that in the name of my hon. Friend the Member for Aberavon (Mr. Cove). It is now laid down in the Bill that no fees shall be charged in respect of admission to any school maintained by the local authority, and the point at issue is whether that principle ought to be more widely extended. It was argued in the Committee last week that our human quality at the end of the war is perhaps the thing that matters most, and that we have to do whatever we can for its development. It is clear that if democracy carries any meaning in men's minds, it must mean the abolition of class distinction. The Senior Burgess for Cambridge University (Mr. Pickthorn) talked about diminishing the importance of the class element in human life; I should say that it should be an ambition of all good democrats, not merely to diminish but to abolish it. He spoke about two classes. Let me remind him that a very distinguished statesman and leader of the Conservative Party realised that there were two nations in this country. 1n fact, we have two classes. My hon. Friend came down to saying that if we had two sorts of school that would be terrible, but nothing would be more deplorable for the development of the capacity and personality of our people than to try to standardise the types of school of this country. The greater the variety, the better. In the past we have had too few types of school.

In my childhood days the choice was either the grammar or public school, or the board school, and most of us went to the board school. It is undoubtedly true that, since Mr. Balfour's Act of 1902—one of the greatest Education Acts ever put in the Statute Book—made it possible for local authorities to widen their vision and develop different types of school for different sorts of pupil, technical education has taken on a human value much higher than it had in the early days. I cannot easily distinguish between a classical education, a modern education and a technical education. If people have the zeal for knowledge, it does not much matter where they start, so long as they go on. We have these various types of school now and hon. Members argue in their favour, with which I heartily agree, but that does not touch the major question of whether certain types of school should be allowed to continue and to charge fees.

The term "free education" has been used often. I remember that when the Minister of Health spoke on the White Paper on Public Health, he pointed out that there could not be any free health service, because somebody had to pay for it somehow. The real question at issue is not whether resources are to be provided for the maintenance of all our varied types of institutions, but how that financial help is to be accorded to them. In our maintained schools, there are to be no fees, which means that all of us in the community are making our appropriate contributions to the cost; but there are different types of school which have played a great part in the development of our educational system, and I pay my tribute to them. They will be permitted to continue to charge fees, although they may be in receipt of grants from the State. I would much prefer to see State assistance granted on a more generous scale than to have this individual collection of fees from the parents of the children who are lucky enough to be able to go to those schools.

I have not tried to be troublesome about the Bill. I have done my best to help my right hon. Friend, even when I went into the Lobby against him, as I may have to do to-day. I am sure he will admit that I have not been obstructionist and that I have not raised false issues on the Bill. But I look upon it as a matter of vital principle, especially in a country which is fighting for democracy and all that it means, that any kind of class distinction is a barrier to the fulfilment of the objects of democracy. Yet with this priceless service of education which means so much to our people and which has been denied in its fulness to so many people, it comes to the fact that if you have chosen your parents with wisdom you can go to a certain kind of school. There is no doubt—and I do not like to use harsh terms—that there is still a good deal of social snobbery in this country. I was never at Eton or Harrow myself. That was perhaps my misfortune or it might have been my good fortune. I do not know, but it is undoubtedly a fact that this element of social snobbery still exists.

If we are to have fee-paying schools we must take it as certain that the struggling parent will believe that his child will have a better chance in life by going to a school which is fee-charging. That is bound to be so. I have nothing against the old school foundations; I think they have played a great part in the development of our education system. I think that the local education authorities have learned much from their experiences. I think that many of the endowed schools—I will mention one in particular, the Manchester Grammar School—have played a very great part in the development of our conceptions of education and school training. But I should have thought that in this year of grace, 1944, now that we are making handsome provision—perhaps not as handsome as it ought to be, but substantial provision—for all types of schools, we ought to banish that social distion which has obtained in the past. We ought to do one of the simplest things, because this will not be a very heavy financial commitment to abolish the system of fees, which is bound to be a bar against certain types of children or young people getting into the type of school they would desire, because of the poverty of their parents. I hope that the Committee will remonstrate with my right hon. Friend and get him to take a broader view of his responsibilities. I must inform the Committee—I have played fair with the Committee ever since we started the Committee stage—that I must ask those who agree with me to go into the Lobby with me on the Amendment.

Mr. Butler

I am sure that no one could complain of the tone or temper of the speech of the right hon. Gentleman. This question of the abolition of fees was much discussed in the Debates on the 1918 Bill, and Parliament then decided that elementary education should be free. We are now faced with the new proposals of this Bill, namely, that there shall be a form of secondary education for all. This is to be made up of a variety of choices which we have so often discussed, modern or technical or grammar, or perhaps a combination of more than one type in one building. A very large portion of these would in any case, in law, be free, namely, the whole of the modern schools which come on from what was, in the old days, called the elementary system. That means that a large amount of the secondary world we are planning in this Bill would, in any case, have been free. When we were considering the principles which would govern the new secondary world we decided in framing this Measure that children should receive whatever type of education would suit them best, and that the children should be able to transfer from one type to another. It is, therefore, of the greatest importance, to use the words of the Spens Report, which was quoted by the hon. Member for Aberavon (Mr. Cove) that there should be "an equivalence between the types," or "parity of esteem" to use their exact words. Therefore, we had to decide whether to reimpose fees on the vast range of the modem schools, or free the whole of the secondary range of education coming within the purview of the local authority. We decided, after due consideration, to take the latter course, with the result that we are now following up the advance made in 1918 by what is, as I shall show the Committee, a considerable advance.

Some doubt has been raised by what is meant by "schools maintained by the local authorities." This point was raised by the hon. Member for Central Leeds (Mr. Denman) and the hon. Member for Aberavon. What we mean, in fact, to put it in simple non-legal language is that the education in all county and auxiliary schools maintained by the local authority shall be free, that is a very large proportion of the secondary world. In fact, looking at the figures it seems to me that all but a very small proportion of the children entering this secondary world will have an opportunity of free education. That enables us to narrow the issue between us to one of comparatively small dimensions. [Interruption.] The percentage able to charge fees is only 4 per cent. The Amendment suggests that fees should be abolished in all schools "maintained or assisted." That is the Amendment in which the hon. Member for Aberavon is interested. I think that probably he does not intend his Amendment to be quite as broad as that, and that we can narrow the issue to one which I think is in the minds of those hon. Members opposite, namely the abolition of fees in all schools which receive an actual grant in aid from public funds. That would cover the hon. Member's speech and also that of the hon. Member for Peckham (Mr. Silkin), who moved this Amendment.

If that is the issue, then we can consider, quite calmly and dispassionately, whether fees should be abolished in direct grant schools. Here I would like as Minister of Education or potential Minister of Education to endorse the views of the right hon. Gentleman opposite. It is largely due to him that I am no longer to be "President of the Board." I cannot accept the philosophy of schooling put forward by the hon. Member for Aberavon. I cannot accept the view that a mere learning of the classics implies something which is socially disastrous. I must accept the view of my right hon. Friend, put from that Box, that education means the self-fulfilment of the individual. If the individual mind can be better trained by study of the classics for the service of democracy, I would not like to exclude them, any more than I would like to exclude any others. I hope, therefore, that we can dismiss these aspects of grammar-school education from our Debates. There is, after all, nothing more democratic than Athenian democracy. That is where most of us began to get the free democratic ideas which are put in this Bill.

Hon. Members have put forward arguments in favour of the course that all secondary education, including that in direct grant schools, should be free. It has been mentioned that the school is a social unit and that it is impossible to get democracy, unless we have a complete sweeping away of the fees in these secondary schools. My answer is that education cannot, by itself, create the social structure of a country. It can very considerably influence it and I believe the fact that we have got priority for this great Bill wilt very much influence the world in which we hope to live in the future. But I have to take the world as I find it, and the economic arguments to which hon. Members opposite may apply their minds on other occasions, including the philosophy of the hon. Member for Romford (Mr. Parker), who has taken so important a part in this Bill, affect the structure of our society and our democracy even more than do the poor efforts of a Minister of Education. I have to apply myself to the world as I find it and the world I find is one in which there is a very diversified range of types.

One of the fundamental principles on which this Bill has been built is that there shall be a variety of types of schools. One of the varieties which I think is quite legitimate is that there shall be schools in which it is possible for parents to contribute towards the education of their children. The only difference between us really is this, that while we in framing this Bill have taken an immense step forward on the Measure of 1918 and freed the vast range of secondary education, all we say is that, consistent with our philosophy, there should be a few schools—there are very few—in which it should be possible for parents to contribute to the cost of the education of their children, just as they are able to contribute to various other laudable objects in their lives. Therefore, I believe we have just as much moral argument in this case as the right hon. Gentleman has in putting his case on the other side. It is a balance between two ways of looking at the matter and deciding which is the right angle.

Let me examine the principle I have enunciated, that it is not immoral for parents to contribute towards the cost of the education of their children. It would be an immoral thing, in my view, if a parent were to purchase a place in a school to the exclusion of someone who would make a potentially better citizen. I think I can show the Committee that we are united on that. If a rich individual were able to put his son, a dolt, into one of our best grammar schools, even though he had to learn Greek and Latin, and that dolt proved unable to profit by that education, I maintain that he would, under our new philosophy of education, be taking the place of someone who could profit better by it. I propose to show how we can deal with that difficulty. I must agree with the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Wakefield (Mr. Greenwood) that it is essential in the world of the future that we should be able to bring out to the top all the best brains, talents and characters of the country. If this Education Bill is to mean anything, it must mean that it is a forcing-house through which we can produce the very best to serve our country in many different walks of life. That is the principle on which we are working.

After all, the great argument for freeing the range of secondary education to which I have referred, and which covers the vast majority of the picture, was that in many of our smaller secondary schools to-day it is possible for a parent to buy a place—far below the cost of the education offered, which is a point very seldom realised—to the exclusion of a more suitable pupil. In this Bill, that particular danger, if it be a danger, is narrowed because we are dealing here only with the possibility of paying fees in the direct-grant schools. But we propose, even here, as I said in my Second Reading speech, that there should be special arrangements for dealing with the direct-grant school. We propose that' authorities should be able to secure the places in them which they need for a number of children to supplement the provision in the county and auxiliary schools. Thus we shall expect the local authority to assess its needs and tell the Governors what places it requires. The local authority can pay the fees of any pupils in these other schools whether they are in or outside the area, because one difference is that such schools often serve more than one individual area.

We come up against another problem. The needs of the local education authoities will, normally, be met by the vast majority of the county secondary provision its schools provide. The Committee must be under no impression that there is a great shortage of grammer-school places. In some areas they have quite enough to fit in the number of pupils they have. In others, you may get another problem. You may find that direct-grant schools, in some areas, provide the main secondary provision. In that case you would be up against a very definite problem. It may well be that, in those areas, we shall have to consider the reconstitution of the direct grant list as a whole. We shall either have to adopt a system whereby an authority obtains in a suitable manner the places it wants in the schools or the schools in a particular area are, in part or whole, formally transferred to the aided or controlled list. I have said that we shall have to revise the direct grant list. I anticipate there will be a two-way traffic, that is to say that some schools will be very much taken by the advantage of the aided list. And why? Because in the aided list it will be possible for them to have their running costs paid including the costs of their teachers' salaries as well as half the cost of any alterations. I do not put it past the vision of some of our great denominations to see the advantage of aided status. Other schools such as have been referred to earlier in the Debate will feel that they want to transfer to the direct-grant list.

I want to make it quite clear that we do not intend that schools shall slip out of the maintained list, under Clause 9, simply in order to become assisted and to be able to charge fees. I can give that definite assurance. Discretion in deciding that will be in the hands of the Minister. Similarly, I propose that there shall be a discretion in the hands of the Minister on the question of what schools pass over from the aided list to the direct-grant list. It seems to me that the Government will have to be satisfied that the school itself is in a suitable financial position. It is no good schools thinking that they can come on the list and get a direct grant from public funds, if they are not themselves in a healthy financial position. It will be necessary for us to see the extent to which a school serves an area outside its own area. That is an important feature of the direct grant list. Here I must listen to the final view of the Fleming Committee. The Fleming Committee have to consider this question together with that of the public schools. The hon. Member for Kilmarnock (Mr. Lindsay), who made so thoughtful a speech on this matter and who referred with such wisdom to the need for levelling-up the whole of our educational system, said that he thought the Government might have been at some slight fault in their handling of the interim reference to the Fleming Committee. I do not regret the reference of this matter to the Committee at all. I think it has cleared up a good deal of misunderstanding. It has meant that the question of fees has been rather cleared out of their way, and that they will be able to present me with what I hope will be a unanimous report on the main questions concerning the secondary world.

What is interesting in the Report—a matter to which the hon. Member for Peckham (Mr. Silkin) also referred—is that they are in agreement about certain definite needs. One is the need for preserving a reasonable independence for schools. The second is the principle that schools of different types shall be accessible to the best types of pupils in the country. That, the Government feel, is part of their philosophy. The fact that the Government have not been able to accept all the recommendations in the interim report of the Committee does not mean that we shall not be able to accept their final report. We shall welcome their advice on the best method of achieving the desired aims. One thing of which I am sure is that the secondary world as a whole must be treated as one and indivisible, and that independence does not depend solely on the retention or the abolition of fees. If this Debate is to do good, we must try to put the question of fees in its proper perspective, not as something for elevating the social status of the schools, and not, as some headmasters think, something on which the independence of the schools depends. It seems to me that the independence of the schools depends upon the articles of government on which I have promised to negotiate and to report again to the Committee. I feel sure that different types, different localities, different pupils, and different parents will find different qualities in the variety of secondary schools which this Bill suggests.

I cannot but think however that the aided type will be found to be of great advantage, just as I think that considerable convenience will be found in enabling some schools to get their grant direct from the Board, particularly when they are largely of a non-local character. The important thing, it seems to me, is that we should not have differences of opinion simply on the question of whether a parent may pay for his child or not, but rather that we should be agreed on the main principles, which I have to work out with the Committee. Those are, that different types of schools shall be accessible to all types of scholars, and that schools shall have reasonably independent lives of their own. If we can agree on those fundamentals, the question of fees does not assume that political and social importance which hon. Members opposite attach to it. When they see the availability and accessibility of the different types of secondary schools which the Government achieve, they will not, I think, believe that this question of whether someone is able to contribute has the importance that they now think it has. Then we shall have, as the philosophy of our educational system, the democracy of outlook which the Government desire.

Mr. Gallacher (Fife, West)

I have an Amendment down in connection with this matter. I would like, before coming to that part of the Minister's speech in which he torpedoed his own case, to say that, while the Senior Burgess for Cambridge University (Mr. Pickthorn) was speaking, a Member on this side handed me what I consider to be a very apt description of the Senior Burgess. I will not read it, however, as I should have to make an immediate withdrawal. I would only suggest, in passing, that there is no relevance in referring, on this Amendment, to conditions in the Soviet Union. In the Soviet Union there is no landed aristocracy such as there is here, and there is no monopoly capitalism such as we have here. The landed aristocracy and the monopoly capitalists in this country set social standards. Success is measured here by how near you get to the landed aristocracy, and how near you get to the big millionaires. The Members of this Committee who went to grammar schools and public schools know that they are very much superior to the rest of us. The social standard is determined by the landed aristocracy and the big monopoly capitalists.

The Temporary Chairman (Colonel Sir A. Lambert Ward)

The hon. Member is speaking to his own Amendment. I must ask him to keep closer to the Amendment which is under discussion.

Mr. Gallacher

Very well, I come to the question of the assisted schools. Many of these grammar schools will be assisted schools. What determines the character of the assisted schools, or grammar schools? Are they a step towards the recognised social standards set by the landed aristocracy and the big monopoly capitalists? Is that the attraction? I say that it is. The Minister said that it is not immoral for a parent to pay a certain proportion of fees for his child, but that it is immoral if a parent pays fees to get his child into a place in a school that could be occupied by a better type of student. There is scarcely a parent who sends his children to these grammar schools, or to the public schools, who does not hope, by so doing, to get his children into positions that could be better filled by more capable children, who have not been to these schools. In my home town, for instance, there is a grammar school. One can see there what chance the clever scholar from an ordinary council school has against the child from the grammar school. No parent sends his children to the grammar school without the thought in his mind that the child will advance socially, by the recognised standards of what is social advancement in this country. You will find that the one thing common to these children is the idea that they are all a little bit, or it may be a big bit, superior to the working-class children around them. Is there anyone who denies that? [HON. MEMBERS: "Yes."] I will take hon. Members to these schools, and show them the attitude of the children there to the children of the ordinary schools. It is not because they are being better educated: it is because they are getting this idea that, somehow, they will get a better chance of crawling into the superior circles of high society.

I could give case after case of young lads and women who, since the war started, have come out of the ordinary schools and have gone into the Army, the Navy, the W.R.N.S., or some other Service, and in examinations have come out far ahead of the products of the grammar schools and public schools. It is not a question of education: it is a question of social status. It is a question, as has been stated from this side, of the class distinction that cuts its way right down, and seeks continually to corrupt and destroy some of the finest elements of the working class. I know that the spirit of this Bill, once it penetrates throughout this country and becomes the recognised standard of education for the people of this country, will make the fee-paying schools go. I would say to the Minister that he should accept this Amendment in connection with assisted schools. No school under the local authority or receiving public assistance should, in any circumstances, charge fees.

Amendment negatived.

Mr. Cove

I beg to move, in page 45, line 43, after "maintained," to insert "or assisted."

This is not a narrow Amendment, but one which raises an issue of principle. I think it is the desire on this side of the Committee that we should go into the Division Lobby and register our opinion on it. I do not want to prolong the Debate on this issue by replying to what the Minister has said, but I hope that my hon. Friends will rally round us in favour of having free education at assisted schools in this country.

Mr. Clement Davies (Montgomery)

I think it is right that one should intervene on this, Sir Lambert, because it is really the main Amendment—

Mr. Butler

On a point of Order. I understood from the Chair quite clearly that the whole discussion was to be taken on these Amendments together. The Committee really must know where it is. I understood that the hon. Member would

Division No. 10.] AYES
Barnes, A. J. Grenfell, D. R. Mort, D. L.
Barr, J. Griffiths, G. A. (Hemsworth) Naylor, T. E.
Barslow, P. G. Griffiths, J. (Llanelly) Oldfield, W. H.
Beaumont, Hubert (Batley) Gruffydd, W. J. Oliver, G. H.
Benson, G. Guest, Dr. L. Haden (Islington, N.) Parker, J.
Bevan, A. (Ebbw Vale) Guy, W. H. Pearson, A.
Bowles, F. G. Hail, W. G. (Coins Valley) Pethick-Lawrence, Rt. Hon. F. W.
Broad, F. A. Hardie, Agnes Price, M. P.
Brown, T. J. (Ince) Harris, Rt. Hon. Sir P. A. Quibell, D. J. K.
Brown, W. J. (Rugby) Henderson, J. (Ardwick) Ritson, J.
Burden, T. W. Henderson, T. (Tradeston) Salter, Dr. A. (Bermondsey, W.)
Burke, W. A. Hollins, J. H. (Silvertown) Shinwell, E.
Cape, T. Horabin, T. L. Silkin, L.
Chater, D. Hubbard, T. F. Silverman, S. S.
Cluse, W. S. Hughes, R. Moelwyn Strauss, G. R. (Lambeth, N.)
Cooks, F. S. Isaacs, G. A. Summerskill, Dr. Edith
Cove, W. G. Jenkins, A. (Pontypool) Taylor, H. B. (Mansfield)
Daggar, G. Jenkins, Sir W. (Neath) Taylor, R, J. (Morpeth)
Davies, Clement (Montgomery) Kendall, W. D. Thomas, I. (Keighley)
Davies, R. J. (Westhoughton) Kirkwood, D. Thorneycroft, H. (Clayton)
Davies, S. O. (Merthyr) Lawson, H. M. (Skipton) Tinker, J. J.
Driberg, T. E. N. Lawson, J. J. (Chester-le-Street) Viant, S. P.
Dugdale, John (W. Bromwich) Leslie, J. R. Walker, J.
Dunn, E. Lipson, D. L. Watson, W. McL.
Edwards, Rt. Hon. Sir C. (Bedwellty) McEntee, V. La T. White, H. (Derby, N.E.)
Edwards, N. (Caerphilly) Mack, J. D. Williams, E. J. (Ogmore)
Edwards, Walter J. (Whitechapel) McNeil, H. Windsor, W.
Foster, W Mainwaring, W. H. Woodburn, A.
Gallacher, W. Maxton, J. Woods, G. S. (Finsbury)
George, Megan Lloyd (Anglesey) Messer, F.
Glanville, J. E. Montague, F. TELLERS FOR THE AYES:
Green, W. H. (Deptford) Morgan, R. H. (Stourbridge) Mr. Charleton and Mr. Mathers.
Greenwood, Rt. Hon. A. Morrison, R. C. (Tottenham, N.)
Acland-Troyte, Lt.-Col. G. J. Beaumont, Major Hn. R. E. B. (P't'th) Bower, Norman (Harrow)
Adamson, W. M. (Cannock) Beechman, N. A. Bower, Comdr. R. T. (Cleveland)
Agnew, Comdr. P. G. Beech, Major F. W. Braithwaite, Lt.-Cdr. J. G. (H'dern's)
Albery, Sir Irving Belt, Sir A. L. Broadbridge, Sir G. T.
Apsley, Lady Bennett, Sir P. F. B. (Edgbaston) Brocklebank, Sir C. E. R.
Aske, Sir R W. Blair, Sir R. Brooke, H. (Lewisham)
Astor, Viscountess (Plymouth, Sutton) Boles, Lt.-Col. D. C. Brown, Rt. Hon. E. (Leith)
Attlee, Rt. Hon. C. R. Bossom, A C. Brown, Brig.-Gen. H. C. (Newbury)
Beattie, F. (Cathcart) Boulton, W. W. Bull, B. B.

be able to put his Amendment and that we should be able to vote on it. I do not want to curtail discussion, or avoid a vote, because I am quite confident of the result, but I must put myself before the Committee. I deliberately took the course, with the agreement of the Chair, of postponing Clause 59 so that we could have a full discussion. We have had a good discussion, but we still have a good deal more work to do if we are to make some progress with the Bill. If the Committee wants to continue the discussion, it is a matter for you, Sir Lambert, but I suggest that any further discussion should be short and that we should make progress with the Bill.

Mr. C. Davies

In view of what the right hon. Gentleman has said, I do not propose to say anything more.

Question put, "That those words be there inserted."

The Committee divided: Ayes, 95; Noes, 183.

Bullock, Capt. M. Hinchingbrooke, Viscount Reid, W. Allan (Derby)
Burton, Col. H. W. Hogg, Hon. Q. McG. Robertson, Rt. Hon. Sir M. A. (M'ham)
Butler, Rt. Hon. R. A. Hopkinson, A. Ross Taylor, W.
Cadogan, Major Sir E. Howitt, Dr. A. B. Rowlands, G.
Campbell, Dermot (Antrim) Hutchison, Lt.-Com. G. I. C. (E'burgh) Royds, Admiral Sir P. M. R.
Campbell, Sir E. T. (Bromley) James, Wing-Com. A. (Well borough) Salt, E. W.
Cary, R. A. Jeffreys, Gen. Sir G. D. Savory, Professor D. L.
Castlereagh, Viscount Jewson, P. W. Schuster, Sir G. E.
Channon, H. Joynson-Hicks, Lt.-Comdr. Hon. L. W. Scott, Donald (Wansbeck)
Christie, J. A. Keatinge, Major E. M. Scott, Lord William (Ro'b'h & Selk'k)
Clarry, Sir Reginald Keeling, E. H. Shephard, S.
Cobb, Captain E. C. Keir, Mrs. Cazalet Shepperson, Sir E. W.
Colegate, W. A. Kerr, H. W. (Oldham) Simmonds, Sir O. E.
Colman, N. C. D. King-Hall, Commander W. S. R. Smith, T. (Normanton)
Cooke, J. D. (Hammersmith, S.) Lamb, Sir J. Q. Snadden, W. McN.
Courthope, Col. Rt. Hon. Sir G. L. Lancaster, Lieut.-Col. C. G. Southby, Comdr. Sir A. R. J.
Crowder, Capt. J. F. E. Leach, W. Spearman, A. C. M.
Culverwell, C. T. Levy, T. Storey, S.
Davies, Major Sir G. F. (Yeovil) Lindsay, K. M. Stourton, Major Hon. J. J.
Davison, Sir W. H. Linstead, H. N. Stuart, Rt. Hon. J. (Moray and Nairn)
De Chair, Capt. S. S. Lloyd, Major E. G. R. (Renfrew, E.) Suirdale, Viscount
Denman, Hon. R. D. Lloyd, Rt. Hon. G. W. (Ladywood) Sutcliffe, H.
Denville, Alfred Loftut, P. C. Sykes, Maj.-Gen. Rt. Hon. Sir F. H.
Doland, G. F. Longhurst, Captain H. C. Tate, Mrs. Mavis C.
Donner, Squadron-Leader P. W. Lucas, Major Sir J. M. Taylor, Major C. S. (Eastbourne)
Dower, Lt.-Col. A. V. G. MacAndrew, Colonel Sir C. G. Thomas, Dr. W. S. Russell (S'th'm'tn)
Duckworth, Arthur (Shrewsbury) McCallum, Major D. Thome, W.
Dugdale, Major T. L. (Richmond) McKie, J. H. Thorneycroft, Major G. E. P. (Stafford)
Ede, J. C. Magnay, T. Thurtle, E.
Edmondson, Major Sir J. Maitland, Sir A. Touche, G. C.
Ellis, Sir G. Manningham-Buller, R. E. Tree, A. R. L. F.
Elliston, Captain Sir G. S. Marlowe, Lt.-Col. A. Tufnell, Lieut-Comdr. R. L.
Etherton, Ralph Mayhew, Lt.-Col. J. Turton, R. H.
Evans, Colonel A. (Cardiff, S.) Mellor, Sir J. S. P. Wakefield, W. W.
Fermoy, Lord Mills, Sir F. (Leyton, E.) Ward, Irene M. B. (Wallsend)
Fox, Squadron-Leader Sir G. W. G. Mitchell, Colonel H. P. Wardlaw-Milne, Sir J. S.
Fraser, Lt.-Col. Sir Ian (Lonsdale) Molson, A. H. E. Watt, Brig. G. S. Harvie (Richmond)
Galbraith, Comdr. T. D. Morrison, G. A. (Scottish Universities) Wayland, Sir W. A.
Gates, Major E. E. Morrison, Major J. G. (Salisbury) Wedderburn, H. J. S.
George, Maj. Rt. Hon. G. Lloyd (P'b'ke) Murray, Sir D. K. (Midlothian, N.) Wells, Sir S. Richard
Gibson, Sir C. G. Neven-Spenca, Major B. H. H. Westwood, Rt. Hon. J.
Gledhill, G. Nicholson, G. (Farnham) White, Sir Dymoke (Fareham)
Graham, Captain A. C. (Wirral) Nield, Lt.-Col. B. E. White, H. Graham (Birkenhead, E.)
Grant-Ferris, Wing-Commander R. Nunn, W. Whiteley, Rt. Hon. W. (Blaydon)
Greenwell, Colonel T. G. O'Neill, Rt. Hon. Sir H. Wickham, Lt.-Col. E. T. R.
Gretton, J. F. Orr-Ewing, I. L. Woolley, Major W. E.
Gridley, Sir A. B. Petherick, M. Wootton-Davies, J. H.
Gunston, Major Sir D. W. Pickthorn, K. W. M. Wright, Mrs. Beatrice F. (Bodmin)
Hammersley, S. S. Pownall, Lt.-Col. Sir Assheton York, Major C.
Hannon, Sir P. J. H. Prescott, Capt. W. R. S. Young, A. S. L. (Partick)
Harvey, T. E. Procter, Major H. A.
Henderson, J. J. Craik (Leeds, N.E.) Rankin, Sir R. TELLERS FOR THE NOES:—
Hepburn, Major P. G. T. Buchan Reed, Sir H. S. (Aylesbury) Mr. Pym and Mr. Drewe.

Clause ordered to stand part of the Bill.