HC Deb 06 July 1961 vol 643 cc1636-7
20. Mr. Willey

asked the Minister of Education whether he will now make a further statement on his campaign to encourage women teachers to return to teaching.

The Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Education (Mr. Kenneth Thompson)

The latest reports from authorities show than nearly 2,200 married women have been appointed between the launching of the campaign in February and 31st May. Further appointments are likely to be made between now and next September.

Mr. Wiley

Whilst appreciating the efforts being made and the success they are attaining, may I ask whether the Parliamentary Secretary recognises that his Department estimated that there are 50,000 married women who might be attracted to teaching? In view of this, will he redouble the efforts, and also consider what further inducements may be necessary to get married women to return to teaching?

Mr. Thompson

Yes, we are getting the women coming in, and we shall do all we can to make the proposition we have offered attractive.

Mr. Holland

Can my hon. Friend say what proportion coming back are coming back in a part-time capacity?

Mr. Thompson

The fallowing teachers have been obtained so far: 1,250 on a full-time basis; 925 on a part-time basis.

Mrs. White

Has the hon. Gentleman given serious consideration to the desirability of giving better pension schemes to women who are coming back into teaching? That would be the best inducement.

Mr. Ellis Smith

If they looked after the children it would be better.

Mr. Thompson

That is a complicated issue, as the hon. Lady knows, and one we have given a great deal of thought to.