HL Deb 25 February 1869 vol 194 cc284-300

My Lords, I rise to lay on your Lordships' table, a Bill to extend and improve the Parochial Schools of Scotland, and to make further provision for the Education of the People of Scotland. It is not usual in your Lordships' House, on the occasion of the introduction of a Bill, to make any statement or explanation as to its contents; but in the present case I think that course necessary, and mainly for the reason that the Bill itself does not contain the whole scheme of the Govern- ment:—so that if the Bill were laid on the table, and circulated without any explanation of those parts of the scheme which lie outside the measure, considerable misunderstanding might arise as to its scope, and as to the intentions of the Government. In 1864, as your Lordships are aware, a Royal Commission was appointed by the Crown to inquire into the system of Scotch Education: and of that Commission I had the honour to be Chairman. It was composed of men of all political parties, and of almost all religious parties, interested in the cause of education in Scotland. It was pretty equally divided, so far as politics were concerned, between the Conservative and the Liberal parties, and contained members and representatives of the Established Church, of the Free Church, of the United Presbyterian Church, of the Episcopal Church, and lastly, of a school very powerful in Scotland in regard to education—the supporters of purely secular education. The Bill is substantially the Bill which was unanimously recommended by the Commission of 1864. I say substantially, because some minor modifications and alterations have been made in its provisions; but in its main principles it is the Bill of the Commission. In now approaching the consideration of the proposed measure, those new provisions are these to which I propose more particularly to refer. Those of your Lordships who are interested in the subject of education in Scotland will remember this important fact—that compulsory rating for the support of education has, for many generations, been the law of Scotland. We have a national system of education properly so called, entirely different from any which has hitherto existed in England, namely, a system of education and rating by Parliamentary authority—the parochial system of schools supported by rates, which are imposed by Parliamentary authority on the owners and occupiers of property. The salaries of the schoolmasters are regulated by law, and those salaries are raised by rates imposed by law. Your Lordships may naturally ask, if that be the case, what are the defects we desire to remedy in the existing system of education in Scotland? I will explain that in very few words. In the first place, the cities and towns of Scotland were never completely under the parochial system, and have altogether outgrown the means of education which the parochial system provides. In the second place, there are many parishes in Scotland in which the growth of the population has been so enormous that the parochial system has become altogether inadequate to supply the educational demands which that increase in population creates. And in the third and last place, there are and always have been many parishes which are so large in geographical extent that the parochial school, though subdivided into several branches, is wholly inadequate for the proper education of the people. There are several; other defects in the existing system of education in Scotland, which I need not dwell upon. For example, imperfect provision with regard to school buildings, and—what is almost as important as any—the very imperfect provisions of the law for getting rid of bad and inefficient schoolmasters. These five great defects in the existing system we propose to deal with and to remedy by the Bill which I desire your Lordships should favourably consider. It will be obvious, from what I have said, that we cannot deal with the remedy for these defects precisely as Parliament has hitherto dealt with the parochial system of Scotland. Parishes are divisions known to the law, and it was a simple operation to enact that in every parish there should be one good and efficient school. But there are parts of parishes in which large populations have within late years arisen that are not known to the law, it is impossible in any general statute to indicate at once where new schools are required. In regard to those also it would be insufficient to enact that in every parish—in the city of Glasgow for instance—one school should be erected; and it might be inconvenient to enact that there should be more than one. All these are matters which must be determined by some authority having a full but discretionary power to go over all Scotland and say, "In this city education is defective, and you want so many more schools," or "This parish is too large, and you require more schools." So, in the manufacturing and mining districts, where the populations have greatly increased, new schools are required for the people. These are matters which Parliament could not undertake to deal with, except by means of a properly elected and properly constituted body, specially appointed for the purpose. That being the case, we must have some authority instituted to which Parliament will commit that full power of investigation as to the localities in which new school accommodation is required. The only point which I have heard questioned as to the Report of the Commission is as to the constitution of the authority to be vested with these large and discretionary powers. I have heard differences of opinion as to whether it should be vested in a Department of the Government in London, or in some body more particularly connected with Scotland. Now, for my own part, I cannot conceive any doubt being entertained on the question by those who have really looked into the extent and nature of the power it is proposed to intrust to this body. I have great respect for my noble Friend the President of the Council (Earl de Grey). There are few persons in England to whom I would more completely defer as a discretionary authority in such matters. I know that to some extent he is acquainted with Scotland, and that, at all events, during those two months in which Englishmen betake themselves for health of body and mind to Scotland, he occasionally honours us with his presence. But still I confess that if an ukase came from his office to me, saying "In your parish there is a great want of a school, and I desire it should be erected," I am not quite sure how I should comport myself in deference to the authority delegated to my noble Friend. It seems to me apparent that where you give such large powers, independent of parochial and municipal authorities, you must vest them in some body which is in the main Scotch, which is acquainted with the feelings and habits of the Scotch people, with the principles of their educational system, and, above all, which is of a representative character. It was on these grounds, and with these feelings, that the Commissioners unanimously recommended that a discretionary power should be vested in the Board, which was sketched in their draft Bill. I think, however, there were considerable objections to the constitution of the Board as originally sketched by the Commissioners; and, indeed, one or two of the Commissioners did dissent on that point of the constitution of the Board. We have, therefore, made an important alteration in it. There are three or four great parties or interests in Scotland who ought to be represented on such a body. In the first place, there is the interest of the proprietors of land, upon whom mainly, and almost exclusively the present burden of the parochial schools rests. In the second place, there are the interests of the burghs, over whom extensive and it may be thought arbitrary powers are given, and which ought therefore to be represented. Then, again, there are the interests of the higher education, and the opinions entertained upon the method of education by men themselves concerned in that higher education—namely, the Universities ought to be represented. I think it also necessary that the schoolmasters, who are on the whole a most respectable and intelligent body, and have done excellent service, and will be able to supply valuable information, should likewise have a voice; and, lastly, there is the Crown, which is usually represented in such Boards. That, therefore, is the constitution of the Board which we propose. We propose that the conveners of the counties of Scotland should elect two representatives, we propose that the burgh interest should elect two other representatives, and we propose that higher education should be represented by two members chosen by the Universities of Scotland, divided into those two groups into which the Parliamentary representation of those bodies is now divided. We also propose that the schoolmasters, through the organized institutions of which they are possessed, should elect one representative, and that two more, with a paid Chairman, should be nominated by the Crown. So much for the constitution of the Board. And now so far the provisions of the Bill might be very simple, and, if this were all that we should enact a very large proportion of the clauses of the Bill might altogether be dispensed with. If we had to deal with nothing but the old parochial system of Scotland, we might simply give to this Board full and discretionary powers to survey the whole of Scotland, to determine in what towns and in what parishes of towns, in what parishes and in what parts of parishes, it is absolutely necessary that new school accommodation should be provided, and we might be content to leave to that Board, in communication with the parties locally interested, full power to erect new schools where they might consider it necessary. But the matter is very much complicated by the introduction in Scotland, during recent years, of the Privy Council system of grants. That is an element foreign altogether to the ancient constitution of the parochial schools of Scotland. I do not mean to complain of the introduction of the system into Scotland. When it was determined by Parliament that out of the Imperial funds assistance should be given to local bodies in respect of education, it was impossible that Scotland should be excepted from the field of its operations. We contribute our full share to the Imperial revenues of the country, and it was but just and fair, that so far as we complied with the conditions of the Privy Council, we should be assisted in that proportion out of the general taxation of the country. But there were in Scotland special circumstances which undoubtedly brought out into very full relief the peculiar defects of the Privy Council system of grants. In the first place there was, at the very time these grants were introduced into Scotland, a very great excitement, and what I may call an exacerbation of the rivalry of ecclesiastical sects. Now, the very basis of the Privy Council grants is, that you meet local subscription by subventions from the Treasury; and local subscriptions in Scotland for particular schools were produced not merely with reference to the wants of the locality, but with regard to the desire of particular religious bodies to outstrip and rival each other in the educational management of the country. The consequence was that, to some extent, encouragement was given to schools erected out of mere denominational rivalry, and not with reference to the existing wants of the locality. I think, however—though the evidence, taken by the Commissioners went far to prove that the operation of the Privy Council grants in this respect in certain localities were injurious—yet, taken as a whole, over the entire country, it could not be said that any very large proportion of the denominational schools were altogether useless for the education of the country. I can say, from my own personal observation and experience, that, in regard to a very considerable number of the schools which were erected—for example, by the Free Church—they were eminently useful in supple- menting the parochial system. But, undoubtedly, in particular localities the system did stimulate and produce schools which were not otherwise required for the wants of the population. There is another inherent defect in the Privy Council system, which came out in very strong relief in Scotland, and which is coming out in strong relief in certain parts of England, and that is that you give to the richest parts of the country and withhold from the poorest. It is a necessary consequence of the principle on which the system is conducted. You give so much to aid those who subscribe in particular localities. In the richer localities the local subscriptions come forth freely and maybe very large; but, in the poorer localities, where the population is much scattered and very poor, you cannot get local subscriptions, and although very often these are the very localities in which the State ought to give the greatest amount of assistance, they are precisely those in which the least help is given by the State. This is a defect inherent in the Privy Council system of grants; you cannot get rid of it so long as that principle is retained. Now, in Scotland, in a very large part of the country, the parishes are very large, the rental is very small, and the population is very poor. The result has been that you find all over the Highlands and the Hebrides of Scotland where the population is in the condition I have described, that the Privy Council system gives very little help; whereas in the richer counties, and amongst the richer population, who do not require so much assistances, a very large amount of Privy Council grants has been absorbed. I will not trouble the House on this occasion with statistics, but I may inform the House that, from the evidence produced before the Commission, it was quite apparent that this inherent defect in the Privy Council system of grants is very remarkable in the case of Scotland, and. is especially evidenced, in such a town as Glasgow. That city is cut in two, as your Lordships are aware, by the river Clyde, and the northern portion of Glasgow is comparatively the richer, almost all the wealthier inhabitants of the city living north of the river, and the population on the south side is very poor. Even in that small area the bad operation of the Privy Council grants has been most remarkable. A very large proportion of assistance given by the Privy Council has been absorbed by the wealthier part of the town, and hardly any has gone to the poorer suburbs. We wish to get rid, as far as Scotland is concerned, of this inherent defect in the Privy Council system—a defect which does not apply to our ancient national system, which was one intended to adapt the educational system of the State to the requirements of the various localities. But, although we desire to get rid of this defect, it is not so easy a matter to do so. A great many of the religious bodies have been enabled by these grants to build schools, and Parliament is pledged to them to a certain extent. It might happen—and probably would happen—that if you gave those schools an unlimited power of throwing themselves upon the ratepayers, they might be very glad to do so; but, on the other hand, where they are not really required by the parish it would be very hard to allow them to do so. The ratepayers might not be willing to take those schools from off the hands of the local managers: they have a right to say, "Oh, no, gentlemen; you put up these schools for your own sectarian purposes, and you have no right now to throw them upon the ratepayers of the parishes. We do not want them; they are not required by the population; and we decline altogether to take your schools from you." Under these circumstances, we again have recourse to the powers of the Board, and we give to the Board the power of looking over the whole of Scotland, and of selecting those denominational schools which are really required for the education of the people, and of adopting them—the effect of which adoption would not be necessarily to throw them upon the rates, but to secure to them the continuance of their Parliamentary grants. But then we go further, and would offer them the power to say, "We desire to be thrown upon the rates; we desire to give up our peculiar or sectarian management, and we desire to throw them upon the common management of the parochial schools." That, also, is a proposition which requires the assent of the other party; and several very important clauses in this Bill are intended to give the Board the power of consulting the two parties, and, where they are both agreed, of allowing those schools to be put upon the footing of parochial schools, under the management of a school committee, which is the representative of the ratepayers. In that way we hope for the future to avoid the waste of money which the Privy Council system of grants has undoubtedly occasioned in Scotland, and to apportion such funds as we may have from the Imperial taxation to the real wants and requirements of the country. There is a provision also for the future. This evil is to be stopped. There are to be no more denominational schools in Scotland after a given date—a date calculated with the view of keeping good faith with those who may have already applied for assistance and have had the promise of a subvention from the Parliamentary grant. We also propose—and this is very important—to give the central Board a very large power over the school buildings in Scotland. There is no defect in the existing system in Scotland which was more prominently brought under the notice of the Commissioners than the very great defect which exists in many parts of Scotland in regard to school building. We empower the Board to deal directly with the local parties, and to require that the school buildings in all cases shall be sufficient for the wants of the population, and the purposes for which they sire built. We also propose to give to the Board full and I may say even arbitrary power with regard to the dismissal of the parochial teachers. This power is absolutely required. All previous Acts of Parliament have been practically useless for the purpose of getting rid of inefficient and bad masters. No doubt if a man is guilty of positive immorality—if you can prove him an immoral man in his life—he may be removed. But with regard to drunkenness, that is an offence exceedingly difficult to prove in Scotland. The difficulty of obtaining evidence upon that point is almost insuperable. You may ask a great many witnesses if they ever saw a certain man drunk, and their answer will be "No," but they will qualify it by such explanations as that "You would have kenn'd he had been tasting." It is extremely difficult to get any evidence upon that point. And so with regard to ill treatment of the children: if you can prove a master is cruel to them you can dismiss him; but for any other kind of inefficiency, complete idleness, such conduct as to estrange the affections of the people, as to prevent them from sending their children to school, you have practically now no remedy whatever. We propose to remove this, which is a great and crying evil in Scotland. I have known many cases where for years and years the highest and best interests of the population have been sacrificed to this absurd notion of some right of fee simple in the property of their offices enjoyed by schoolmasters in Scotland. We propose that the Board, in communication with the local authorities, and on receiving complaints from them, shall, as regards the wasters appointed for the future, have an absolute power of dismissal for in competency—allowing, of course, wherever the incompetence arises from physical inability or any causes not connected with moral delinquency, retiring allowances of sufficient amount. We propose also, that so far as regards the inspection of the schools, the Privy Council shall retain the power of appointing the Inspectors. We believe that the system works admirably at present, and it would be inconvenient that it should be altered. I apprehend it will be quite enough that copies of the Reports of the Inspectors should be sent to the Board in Scotland, and also that the Board should, at all times, have the power of appointing Special Inspectors with respect to any special defects which may be brought before them from particular localities. I now come to a point of great importance—I mean to certain modifications in the application of the New Code in Scotland, which, I think, we may be able to arrange with my noble Friend at the head of the Privy Council if this Bill should pass. The arrangements which are now in progress in the Office of the Privy Council must, in a great measure, depend upon the success of this measure, for, if this measure is passed by Parliament, we intend to introduce some important modifications in the application of the New Code to Scotland, based entirely on the peculiarities of our national system, and especially upon our adoption of the system of rating. The first main; principle of the New Code is one which I, for my part, cordially adopt, and that is the payment by results. I think this fundamental principle is perfectly right. I think the masters and managers of schools ought to be paid according to the results of their teaching, as shown in the examination conducted by the In- specters. This, which is the main principle of the New Code, is in no case to be departed from in Scotland. But there is another principle connected with the New Code in England which is altogether inapplicable to our peculiar condition in Scotland, and that is the distinction made between different classes of society. The theory of the New Code is, that their assistance is given only for the education of the poor, and for elementary branches of instruction only. But it has never been our habit in Scotland to divide society for educational purposes. On the contrary, it is the universal custom all over Scotland that men in very different classes of society should be educated together in the parochial schools. You will have the children of the poorest labourer sitting beside the children of the farmer who employs him, the children of the clergyman of the parish, and even in some cases of the landed gentry, sitting on the same bench and learning from the same master the same branches of instruction. It would be most injurious to the educational system of Scotland, and most unjust and inexpedient as regards the habit of the people, to make any distinction between the different classes of society. Therefore the payments of the Privy Council, measured by results, will be applied equally to all the scholars of the school, without reference to, or distinction between, the class of society to which they belong. The second modification I hope to see adopted is that some recognition should be given, within reasonable limits and under proper restrictions, to the higher branches of education. In the parish schools of Scotland we have never been accustomed to limit education to "the three R's." It has always been the custom of the parochial schoolmasters to teach geography, history, and very often Latin and Greek, even to the children of the poorest. I am much afraid that the proportion of the children who have gone on to those higher branches has of late years been a diminishing one; but that is still the case to a great extent, and it would be most injurious that any discouragement should be given to the practice. The third modification which we contemplate is that in regard to pupil teachers; their appointment should not be made contingent necessarily upon their attendance at normal schools, but that their attendance at the Universities, under certain restrictions hereafter to be agreed upon, should be taken as equivalent to their attendance at the normal schools. That will be a great boon to many of the poor scholars in Scotland. A very large proportion of the persons educated at the parish schools go direct from them to the University, and, while obtaining their education there, eke out their subsistence by teaching schools in the evening, after working hard all day in the University classes. Provided some guarantee is given that they really intend to pursue the profession of teachers and are keeping up some practice in teaching powers, attendance at the Universities may, I think, be taken as equivalent to their attendance at a normal school. The general principles upon which these modifications of the Privy Council Minutes are founded will be found in very general terms in the Schedule of the Bill which I now lay upon the table of the House. The first sentence of the Schedule is so important that I will read it— The Committee of Council, within—months after the passing of this Act shall issue a Code of Minutes and Regulations according to which the sum of money voted by Parliament for public education shall be distributed in Scotland; and the Committee in the course of each year, as occasion requires, may cancel or modify any articles of the said Code, or may establish new articles, except as hereinafter mentioned; but"— And this is the important passage— But the said Code, or any alterations which shall be made thereon, shall not have any effect or operation until the same shall have been submitted to Parliament and laid on the tables of both Houses, for at least one calendar month; and such Code of Minutes and Regulations in force for the time being shall contain no directions or impose no conditions at variance with the regulations. Now the first regulation is the important one— Rule 1. The object of Parliament in voting such sum is to defray part of the cost of educating these scholars (without distinction of classes) in the national schools of Scotland, and in framing a Code of Minutes and Regulations for the distribution of such sum due care shall be taken by the said Committee that the standard of education which now exists in the parochial schools shall not be lowered, and that, as far as possible, as high a standard shall be maintained in all the national schools of Scotland. That Schedule regulates the spirit in which the New Code shall be framed in its application to Scotland—no distinction between classes of society, and no discouragement, but rather encourage- ment, to the high standard of education which has hitherto existed. There is another point to which I must refer respecting a subject of general interest, both as regards England and Scotland. Your Lordships must have been struck with the very great difference which exists between the condition of public opinion in Scotland and in England upon this great subject of popular education. I think it cannot but surprise some Members of this House to be told that a Commission, consisting of men of all political parties and of all religious denominations in Scotland, have unanimously recommended the giving to a central Board such large and arbitrary powers of imposing additional rates for educational purposes—enabling it to go to great cities like Glasgow, having an important municipal body, and direct the erection of a school in any particular street or ward. How has this great difference of feeling arisen? Your Lordships will recollect the terms in which, last year, when the noble Duke opposite (the Duke of Marlborough), then President of the Council, introduced his Bill, he referred to permissive rating, the strong objections he urged to it, and how impossible he thought permissive rating in England. I really believe that if we were to propose a Bill for England, with powers of compulsory rating such as these, each particular hair on the noble Duke's head would stand on end, and I do not believe it would receive the assent of anything like the same proportion of men of all political parties in this country. The question naturally arises, how has this great difference of opinion between the two countries arisen? How is it that the people of Scotland are so anxious for education that they are willing—men of all parties and all Churches—to ask for such powers as these to be given to a central Board? The answer to the question is that this state of opinion is due to some of the great leaders of the Reformation in Scotland. The parochial system in Scotland was founded by John Knox, who laid down the principle, which has never faded from the popular mind in Scotland, that it is the duty and the function of the State to insist upon the education of the people. In language of singular eloquence and fervour, which even at this distance of 300 years, it is impossible to read without emotion, he insisted before the Par- liament of Scotland that it was their absolute duty, if they desired that the light of the Reformation should be maintained in Scotland, to found a great system of national education. Nor was it a mere vague, suggestion. Every part of the scheme—even that which we are now only about to adopt—was laid down in that address by Knox. He provided for the establishment of parish schools; he desired to see burgh schools for the middle classes; he desired the erection of great Colleges and Universities for the higher education to be given to the highest classes. Nay, more, he provided for annual and continual inspection, and he laid down a principle which only very lately has been acknowledged in our legislation, but which I strongly suspect is about to play an important part in the legislation of the country—that education in certain cases must even be made compulsory. That principle has been adopted by Parliament in all the Factory Acts, and in other Acts for the employment of children; it has been adopted bit by bit, slowly and quietly, and I believe there are many persons who are not at this moment aware of the extent to which our legislation is committed to that principle in England. That principle was laid down by the great Reformers of Scotland; the advantages which she has derived from her parochial system have all sprung from that source, and it is due to the memory of these men to say that this system of general education was laid down by them alone, and, so far as I know, in no other country to which the Reformation extended was it adopted in the same degree or the same importance attached to it. So far as I have been able to ascertain, no one of the English Reformers laid stress upon the education of the people, but the Reformers of Scotland alone. I believe the secret of the difference is this—that in Scotland the Reformation came from below, while in England it came from above; and hence the interests of the people were always foremost in the minds of the Scottish Reformers, and hence they derived their singular clear-sightedness on this question. It is from that source the Scottish people have derived their strong appreciation of the blessings of education. But, at the same time, I am bound in honesty to point out to this House that this Bill, in many respects, widely diverges from the principles laid down by our early Reformers. It is unquestionably true that in their time the education of Scotland was designed to be what is now called a denominational system. It was to be both national and denominational—that is to say, it was to be strictly national, but it was also to be strictly religious. Such a system was possible at that time. In the view of John Knox the whole population of the country was to be of one Church, and under these circumstances it was natural and perfectly right that the national system should be strictly denominational; that is to say, when the people were all of one religion and one Church it would be perfectly natural, and in my opinion perfectly right, that Parliament should connect education with the teaching of that Church. But, unfortunately, we are not now in the position in which John Knox was, or in which he hoped Scotland would be. For though we are not much divided in as regards doctrine, yet we are keenly divided on points of ecclesiastical discipline, and we can no longer hope for the establishment of a united system of education under any one Church. Under these circumstances I think a great step is now proposed by the system provided by this Bill—to cut off the connection between education and the conduct of particular religious bodies. The Inspectors are no longer to be necessarily members of any particular denomination, and they are not to be confined to the inspection of schools connected with any particular denomination. Above all, it is expressly provided that they are to take no cognizance of religious instruction unless the managers of the schools themselves desire such cognizance to be taken. This is an important part of the measure, and without it we could not possibly have had that assent to our measure which we have received from all parts of the country. We have full confidence that the ratepayers will conduct the new schools in respect of religious instruction much in the same way as the parish schools have been conducted. There really is no difference in the management of the different denominational schools in Scotland. It has been proved over and over again that parents do not care a halfpenny what is the religious connection of the school to which they send their children. They send them to the best school, whether that school be an Established Church school or a Free Church or an United Presbyterian school. We propose, therefore, to take no cognizance of religion in these schools. In point of principle this course is rendered all the more easy by the example set last year by the noble Duke opposite (the Duke of Marlborough) in recognizing, for the first time, secular schools in England as entitled to a share in the Privy Council grants. We take no notice of the religious instruction taught in any of these schools, except this, that we impose upon all the schools a stringent Conscience Clause. No public money is to be given to any school that does not submit to such a clause. But the truth is, that here also, I am glad to say, we are not met with the difficulties which prevail in England. In Scotland it has always been the custom that Roman Catholics may obtain the advantages of secular instruction at the parish schools without being compelled to go through the religious teaching. The same system has been universally adopted in the Free Church, and in every other—except, as I have been informed, though I hope it is not true, that the Episcopal Church will not allow secular instruction to be given in their schools without the pupils going through the catechisms of their Church. But, having thus given a general view of the principles of the Bill, I will not go further into details at present. At the proper time, and at a future stage—which I hope, as the Bill has received the assent of men of all parties, may be on going into Committee, which I propose to do after the Easter holidays—I shall be able to explain it more in detail, and I hope that the measure will finally receive the sanction of Parliament. In the meantime I would make one earnest appeal to the different religious bodies of Scotland to lay aside their minor differences, and to accept of this measure as on the whole a very favourable compromise. I know my countrymen well; I know the importance they attach, I think honourable, to abstract principle,—principles often so abstract, that it is difficult to get Englishmen to understand the importance attached to them. I know the tenacity with which they hold to their peculiar views, and I know that the Bill will not altogether coincide with the opinions of the extreme voluntaries or of the extreme supporters of the Estab- lished Church. I lay it on the table as a Bill embodying a reasonable compromise, and earnestly trust it will be received in the same spirit in Scotland. My firm belief is, that if it is adopted we shall confirm and extend the inestimable benefits we have already derived from our parochial system, and shall be erecting the best monument that we can raise in grateful memory of immortal names.

A Bill to extend and improve the Parochial Schools of Scotland, and to make further provision for the education of the people of Scotland—Was presented by The Duke of ARGYLL; read 1a. (No. 11.)