HC Deb 08 February 1968 vol 758 cc645-6
34. Dr. Gray

asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what action he is taking to ensure that comprehensive education schemes are subjected to no delay as a result of the two years deferment in the raising of the school leaving age.

Mr. Gordon Walker

As announced in my Department's Circular 6/68 of 19th January, a capital allocation of up to £8 million in terms of starts in 1968–69 is available for meeting the pressing needs of authorities in England, Wales and Scotland whose plans for secondary reorganisation are closely linked with their arrangements for raising the leaving age and who have in addition already introduced a comprehensive pattern or are committed to doing so next September. A further £8 million will be available in 1969–70.

Dr. Gray

Will my right hon. Friend consider sending a questionnaire to all local education authorities to find out exactly what the difficulties are, whether they are financial and, if not, whether they can be removed by the Ministry so that the postponement is kept to the minimum?

Mr. Walker

In effect, that is what my Circular does.