HC Deb 14 March 1968 vol 760 cc1601-2
25. Mr. Christopher Price

asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science if he will make a statement on the conclusions of the Dainton Report.

Mr. Gordon Walker

I refer my hon. Friend to my answer on 29th February to my hon. Friend the Member for Stretford (Dr. Ernest E. Davies).—Wol. 759, c. 400–1.]

Mr. Price

Does my right hon. Friend agree that it is not enough merely to say that the conclusions are largely a matter for local authorities? Does he agree with the conclusion of the Dainton Report that every child should study mathematics until he leaves school? If he does, where are the thousands of extra mathematics teachers to come from?

Mr. Gordon Walker

Whatever my hon. Friend may say, it is true that nearly all the recommendations of the Dainton Committee were directed to universities, L.E.A.s, and schools, and I do not think that I am yet called on to express a view on that kind of recommendation. I am engaged at the moment in consulting various bodies and associations concerned. What is gratifying is that there has been a general acceptance of the view that the swing away from science is wrong, and should be reversed.

Sir E. Boyle

Are not a number of very important issues raised by this Report, and, indeed, in certain respects, does it not go in the opposite direction to an important recent statement of the Schools' Council? Will the right hon. Gentleman undertake that within the fairly near future he will make a statement in the House, or a speech on this subject, saying where he stands? He cannot keep right out of this.

Mr. Gordon Walker

The right hon. Gentleman knows that it is proper in these matters to have some consultation first. The time will come when I must make my views known, and I shall.