§ 1. Mr. Marquand
asked the Minister of State for Commonwealth Relations what proposals he has approved for the expansion of educational services in the High Commission Territories.
§ The Minister of State for Commonwealth Relations (Mr. C. J. M. Alport)
The expansion of educational services in the High Commission Territories is one of the High Commissioner's constant aims. He is now considering what expenditure to plan for in the coming financial year. I am therefore not able to give details of his proposals.
§ Mr. Marquand
Would not the hon. Gentleman agree that at the present time a very critical situation exists in South Africa and that we should do all in our power, and very much more than we have done hitherto, to build up the educational services in the High Commission Territories? Is it not a fact, for example, that in Basutoland, whereas 60 per cent. of the children are in primary schools, only 1,400 children have yet had the opportunity of a secondary education? Will the hon. Gentleman undertake to press as hard as he can for a big improvement in education services?
§ Mr. Alport
Yes, we are most anxious that there should be progress, and substantial progress, in education in the three High Commission Territories. The right hon. Gentleman has referred to the needs of Basutoland. On the whole, Basutoland has made considerable progress in the educational field with the assistance of the three great missionary societies that are working there. From our point of view, the position of the Bechuanaland Protectorate is one for great concern in this matter, and I can assure the right hon. Gentleman and the House that we will do what we can to improve the situation.