HC Deb 15 May 1947 vol 437 cc1690-1
28. Mr. K. Lindsay

asked the Minister of Education whether he will reduce the maximum numbers allowed in primary classes from 40 to 30, partly on the educational merits of the case and partly to attract larger numbers of teachers to this branch of the teaching service.

Mr. Hardman

I sympathise with the hon. Member's suggestion. So long, however, as the present building restrictions persist I am afraid that it is not practicable to provide the extra classrooms required.

Mr. Lindsay

Is my hon. Friend aware that there is written into the regulations a differentiation between primary and secondary schools which belongs to the 19th century; and will he now change that figure to 30, so that there is at any rate a target to work to, because one of the biggest difficulties is in obtaining teachers for primary schools?

Mr. Hardman

I am in entire sympathy with the sentiments expressed by my hon. Friend.

Mr. Frank Byers

Is it not true that only a very small proportion of the building labour and materials available would have to be allocated for these projects in order to give children the schools and equipment they require; and what representations have the Ministry of Education made to the Ministry of Health about this?

Mr. Hardman

We are constantly making representations, but we believe in trying to do our best together.