HC Deb 27 October 1955 vol 545 cc347-8
4. Mr. Royle

asked the Minister of Education if he will negotiate with the managers of approved schools, now being closed, so as to provide accommodation for maladjusted children.

The Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Education (Mr. Dennis Vosper)

If any of these buildings appear to me to be suitable for use as special schools for maladjusted or other handicapped children for whom places are needed, my right hon. Friend will urge local authorities to use them in this way. Six such cases are now being investigated by my Department, and in a seventh case the school managers and the local education authority are already negotiating.

Mr. Royle

Will the hon. Gentleman allow me to express my very deep satisfaction at that reply, and will he hurry on in every sense because of the real urgency of this problem?

Mr. Vosper

Yes, Sir.

Mr. Alport

In addition to using the accommodation at these schools, will my right hon. Friend take steps to try to keep together the admirable staffs of these schools so that they can carry on as a team the work which they carried out so satisfactorily under their previous entity?

Mr. Vosper

I am aware of that aspect, but it is hardly a practical proposition to transfer the staffs in their entirety. My right hon. and gallant Friend the Home Secretary, however, is aware of the position, and I am in negotiation with him.