HL Deb 28 June 1993 vol 547 cc591-615

3.11 p.m.

The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Baroness Chalker of Wallasey)

My Lords, I beg to move that the House do now again resolve itself into Committee on this Bill.

Moved, That the House do now again resolve itself into Committee.—(Baroness Chalker of Wallasey.)

On Question, Motion agreed to.

House in Committee accordingly.


Clause 1 [Treaty on European Union]:

Lord Beloff moved Amendment No. 37:

Page 1, line 9, after ("II") insert ("except Article 3(p)").

The noble Lord said: The burdens on the noble Lord, Lord Stoddart, in dealing with the Bill have been heavy and I have agreed on this occasion to relieve him of his burden. I do so with pleasure. Remarks have been made by some noble Lords opposite in particular about many of the amendments being designed merely to promote debate and to have no specific thrust to them. Amendment No. 37 is an amendment which actually seeks to do something. It seeks to eliminate one of the major usurpations which the Commission seeks to make through the treaty. It is an area which was not covered or envisaged by the original Treaty of Rome and one can see no good reason for bringing it today within the ambit of the Community's institutions.

The area of education and culture is, of course, a matter of great general European interest. The contacts between the cultural activities and those who pursue them in various European countries, and equally in the spheres of science, scholarship and education, have been of importance for centuries. There is no obvious reason why those should now form the focus of activity by the Commission. It is not that there are no aspects of machinery which can facilitate the movement of persons in education or cultural activities across the borders of our respective countries. But that movement is not, and should not be, confined to the membership of the European Community, even were that membership to be increased.

Indeed, the main responsibility for oiling the wheels of education and cultural activity, as indeed is admitted in the text of the treaty, from the beginning has been a matter for the Council of Europe. There is no evidence that it has failed in those activities, that it needs replacing or that further activities of that kind require an administrative substructure.

On the educational side, there are certain points to emphasise. One is that, although in our different countries we all do much the same thing—we teach children; we hopefully teach students—we do it in many different ways. Our systems are much more different in that field than, let us say, our systems in industry or commerce. Therefore there is a particular delicacy about trying to mesh those systems.

Furthermore, in all our countries, and most notably in this country, there are major changes in progress at almost every level of education, in particular but by no means exclusively, in higher education. We have run into some difficulties, as the Committee is aware, partly because the burden upon our Ministers in the Department for Education has been so considerable. I sometimes wonder how my noble friend Lady Blatch can summon up the energy that has been required to pilot successive Bills through the House. I see therefore no argument for, and very considerable argument against, imposing the further burden which falls on Ministers whose activities are in some way related to the activities of the European Community. The last thing that we want at a time of major change in our own education arrangements is to see Ministers for Education follow the flight-path of Ministers of Agriculture and of the Environment backwards and forwards to Brussels, Luxembourg and Strasbourg, scarcely touching ground in the country for whose destinies in that field they are responsible.

Therefore we require an argument which has not been put forward in any detail or concrete manner as to why the Commission should suddenly arrogate to itself powers in this field. I know that. as usual., we shall be told that there are limitations which it accepts on its powers that there shall be no forcible harmonisation by regulation or even by directive, arid that it is all to be done gently through incentives. However, I believe that those words, like so much else in this unfortunate treaty, are so vague and so general that they do not give us the reassurance that we seek.

What are to be the incentives? Let me take a concrete instance. We are exhorted in the treaty, arid by some of its supporters - I believe it is justifiable —to say that we are not doing enough about studying European languages. That charge, unfortunately, is one which sticks, even though some of those who make it are not notably fluent in many other languages than their own. However, perhaps they hope that their children will do better. What is to be the incentive for improvement in that area? Will children who pass GCSE in French, German, Italian. Portuguese, Danish or whatever it may be be summoned to Brussels and given a piece of cake, a T-shirt or something else by M. Delors in some great ceremony which can be televised and given greater public presence? We should like to know those incentives. I hope that when the Minister replies to the debate she will explain exactly what should be done, how much money it is to cost and whether the burden is one that it is reasonable to accept for our education budget at a time when we are so pressed for necessary and immediate expenditure on school buildings and so forth. We need assurances there.

Furthermore, despite the disclaimer about harmonisation, we need assurances that no attempt will be made to insist, for purposes of recognition of our degrees, that our academic university years and programmes be assimilated to those of the Continent. They are different, more intensive and therefore shorter. We have a wholly different tradition of looking after students, which is why there is such a demand from students from the European Community to come here. We would like to know that nothing will impede the autonomy of the British university system which we have been defending against other proposals from Her Majesty's Government over recent years. Nothing should come out of the accession to the treaty which will in any way interfere with that autonomy.

As regards culture, I feel that the argument hardly needs making. Everyone knows what official culture means: that some city will become the city of culture and M. Delors will visit it; some other exhibition will be put on, relevant or irrelevant to some great anniversary in the history of Europe. There are always ways in which money can be spent on manifestations, when what is primarily needed is the kind of society in which culture is reckoned as a value for its own sake. The further it is kept from official intervention and, above all, the further from international intervention —which is almost bound to be homogenising—the better. I beg to move.

Lord Elton

I intervene briefly, tempted by the amendments on the Marshalled List which appear to me to focus an approach to the treaty which ought to be spoken to. It seems to me that many people in this country do not sufficiently know what goes on outside it. In support of that, I plead that in spite of the fact that the Stock Exchange, for example, has spent £40 million on the installation of a system which proved to be worthless and had to be scrapped, there are people who feel that we can tell Europe all it needs to know about financial systems. In spite of the fact that Lloyd's of London appears to be in the process of beggaring a great many of its members, there are people who think that Europe has everything to learn from us about insurance. In spite of the fact that our national football team was beaten in Oslo by a country whose population is smaller than that of London, while its supporters merrily wrecked the bars of the capital, there are people who feel that this country is the Mecca forall true sportsmen and football players. In spite of the fact that we were incapable even of getting the Grand National race started, there are people who feel that England is still the only true home of horseracing.

Baroness Trumpington

Hear, hear!

Lord Elton

Encouraged by that, I shall add a paragraph to my otherwise short intervention to say: in spite of the fact that we have a Press that delights in the destruction of privacy and personal reputation and appears to be trying to shake most of the major institutions of the country, we still feel that the freedom of that press is the model on which the whole of Europe should base its own institutions.

All that argues either great pride or a considerable ignorance of what goes on elsewhere on the Continent. I merely ask that Members of the Committee will observe that the amendments would be directed at removing, among other things, the ERASMUS scheme and other schemes under which 70,000 students have been able to conduct their studies for a considerable time in other European Community countries, to the considerable increase of their understanding of the mechanism and culture of those countries.

I believe that this should not be a Little England looking inward at the sceptred isle, but a sceptred isle as part of the great concourse of nations with shared but differing cultures. I wholly oppose the intention behind these amendments.

Lord Thomson of Monifieth

I wish to join the noble Lord, Lord Elton, in taking up the points made by the noble Lord, Lord Beloff. The latter is a distinguished educationist, but I was saddened to hear him speak in such a patrician and disdainful way of the efforts of people to learn other European languages. He himself may be fluent in many of them, but I do not believe that he should lightly pour scorn on the efforts that are made by parents to encourage their children to a fluency that they themselves do not enjoy.

Lord Beloff

I am grateful to the noble Lord for giving way. I made no such reference. I strongly approve of the efforts of parents—often thwarted but made nevertheless—to get their children to learn more languages. All I was asking is: what kind of incentives are proposed under the treaty to render their task easier? To that, I require a reply.

Lord Thomson of Monifieth

If tomorrow the noble Lord, Lord Beloff, examines the record of what he said, he may find that he has a manner of saying things, of which perhaps he is not always aware. I do not think my remarks were at all unjust. The answer I give him as to what incentive those people have who seek to improve the linguistic skills of the new generation in the country is that they have the best of all economic incentives. Like the United States, we have the tremendous advantage in this country of a language which has become a world language. However, we do not make the most of that advantage. If we are doing business in the rest of the European Community, it is not necessary to have a fluency in French, German, Dutch or Italian, in order to engage in the final negotiations, to do a deal on behalf of this country. But—my goodness! —it helps to make the deal possible to engage in some kind of civilised conversation over the dinner table. I put the matter no higher than that.

Despite having the advantage—or perhaps because of it—of being the home of a world language, we are the most linguistically illiterate of the nations in the European Community. It is in our national interest to seek to do something about that. The moves that are made within the European Community, signalled back in the original Treaty of Rome but set out in more precise detail now in the text of the Maastricht Treaty, are moves in our national interest. It is a major —perhaps the major—challenge for the nation to try to make itself more commercially and industrially competitive within the European Community. For that, education and training, including a greater awareness of what happens in other countries, are very much needed.

Within the European Community, the Government are absolutely right—though I disagree with some of the consequences they draw from their social chapter policy—to emphasise not only the need for Britain to be competitive educationally within the European Community, but for the European Community to be increasingly competitive in terms of education and training within the global world community. That is what lies behind these moves on which the European Community has now embarked.

The noble Lord, Lord Elton, mentioned the ERASMUS programme which is still modest, covering about 2 per cent. of the students within the European Community who might enjoy it. However, it is a very important development, as are the associated programmes. For example, the TEMPUS programme enables the European Community to try to serve the urgent educational needs of the countries of Eastern and Central Europe. It also deserves our imaginative support and understanding. The motive behind this particular series of amendments stems from the worst kind of British insularity and nationalism.

3.30 p.m.

Baroness Seear

In support of my noble friend, I should like to remind the Committee of the very wise remark that while the Germans sell in English they buy in German, which can be a very useful guide. In the days of the Treaty of Rome, training was one of the subjects covered by the treaty and for which funds were available for schemes. Those of us who have collaborated in those schemes at one time or another have been well aware that there is a great illogicality and indeed a weakness in having training included but nothing for education. It means that the whole approach has to be geared in a way that one would not choose. Education and training should surely be so closely related that schemes do not have to be devised in order to make it clear that they are in some narrow sense "training", when what is required is a broader educational approach combining both conventional education and vocational training.

Baroness Carnegy of Lour

The noble Lord, Lord Thomson of Monifieth, recently instigated a short debate on the subject of a report entitled Education without frontiers, in which he had been personally involved. Noble Lords who listened to that debate or read about it will know that he put forward many interesting proposals for students in various countries to study in other countries. In that debate, I had the opportunity of saying a word about how the British Open University now recruits increasing numbers of students who live in member states of the Economic Community.

The rules of the Community at the moment make it very difficult for a university in one member state to charge more to students from another member state to cover the extra costs that that involves (for the Open University it involves extra costs). I need not go into that. But this is an example of how co-operation within the Community on educational matters might sort out the charging anomalies that make this kind of highly desirable operation very difficult. I therefore believe that a small—not enormous —gradual development of co-operation on the universities front at least has much potential. I would be very sorry indeed to see this amendment carried.

Lord Desai

The amendments before us refer to the education of youth as well as co-operation. Some of the measures covered by Article 3(p), which Amendment No. 37 wishes to delete, are already in effect. Its main aspect is ERASMUS, which some Members of the Committee have mentioned. ERASMUS, looked at from the point of view of students, is a very good thing. I am involved at the London School of Economics in tutoring many ERASMUS students; and some of my children are about to enjoy ERASMUS. ERASMUS has a problem and we ought to note it. At this moment our balance of trade in ERASMUS is that lots of people come here while very few of our students go to other countries. To some extent therefore we are benefiting the Community at large. We ought to find ways of encouraging more of our students to go abroad—or, if that is not possible, to find a way of recovering the costs of training those extra students, moneys which at the moment the universities do not get.

There is also the problem of co-operation among educational institutions which is also a very important aspect. There is a programme called SPES, which I know that many of my colleagues have used. The whole discussion of the economics of transition in Eastern Europe is very much a co-operative effort among economists of many countries. These are just two examples. We are looking upon activities such as foreign languages, training, education and research in a much more European context. That cannot but be good. The fact that it can be financed from what is a very modest advance, as the noble Lord, Lord Thomson of Monifieth, has pointed out, is a good thing.

Lord Annan

I am sure the Committee will agree with me that it is always a pleasure to listen to the noble Lord, Lord Beloff, on education. Not only does he speak with such brilliance, but he always takes the line that on the whole our educational system is as good as it possibly can be and no change is really needed. That was certainly his view at the time of the Robbins Report of which he was a stalwart opponent.

I wonder whether we should not listen to the Continent when they advise us that our system is not always as good as it might be. It is now well over 100 years since Matthew Arnold besought this country to learn something from the French about their educational system. We did not do so and I believe that we have lost tremendously as a result. At that time the French had compulsory secondary education. We did not. In that respect, one has only to read the kind of essay which a boy or a girl in a French lycée has to serve up if he or she is reading Philo in the baccalauréat to see how disciplined it is: introduction, first thesis, development, second thesis, development; conclusion.

If one took an A-level essay in any arts subject, I doubt whether one would find that discipline. It is true that the French are not interested at that stage in education in originality. They leave that to develop later, sometimes with fatal results in the Ecole Normale. But in the schools they are drilled in this way. That is why the French develop their great gift of logic which in our expositions we could do well to imitate.

I wonder too whether, in the debate which continues in this country about A-levels, we should not look more favourably than we do at the international baccalauréat. This is a way in which we get that spread of subjects in the sixth form which forces people to keep on doing mathematics however much they may dislike it; and it keeps on making them do languages, even though they are scientifically inclined, whereas under our system we still allow children to give up at the age of 15, and even earlier sometimes, because they are naturally inclined to drop subjects which will not be of use to them in the sixth form.

But I very much agreed with the noble Lord, Lord Beloff, when he spoke of the need for us to retain our own conception of university education. It is interesting that the educationists in France and in Germany look with envy at our system and very often say that they must reform their own system of higher education. It is at something like the age of 37 when in Germany a student—if one can call him that—is able to move towards Habilitation, which thereby enables him to teach in a university in a full professorial, or lower professorial level. Again, it is exactly the same in France, where the Doctorat de l'Etat is far too long and exacting.

I agree that Europe is looking to us to give a lead on this question. But there is one concomitant. If we moved to a broader-based subject in the sixth form, it is inevitable that we shall have to lengthen our university course which is the shortest in Europe for the very good reason that our children become more specialised and have a head start in the universities studying subjects which in other countries they could only begin to study when they get to university. I implore the Minister when she comes to reply to give a favourable answer to the fact that we could make some changes in our system of education which would bring us more into line with the European Community.

Lord Hamilton of Dalzell

I am at the age when my children, aged 20, are just getting to the stage of university education—some of them have been through it. They, and an enormous number of their contemporaries, have learnt foreign languages. They did so not because they were told to do it by Brussels but because they see a commercial interest in doing so.

There is compulsion in these articles which raises a certain fear. The French know perfectly well that if every person in the member states has to learn to speak another language, that second language will be English. Therefore there is a great fear that people will be forced to learn two foreign languages in order to preserve French as a European language. That will rule out the possibility for a large number of children of learning Japanese, Chinese or some other language —perhaps Portuguese for South America—in which they see greater economic opportunities (I think correctly so) than they see in Europe.

Lord Monson

I should like to concentrate on that part of Article 3(p) which enjoins the Community actively to make: a contribution … to the flowering of the cultures of the Member States". That is an extraordinary phrase. After all, European culture has been blossoming and flowering fruitfully for over 2,500 years without the need of any assistance from a European superstate. The phrase "flowering of the cultures of the member states" sounds like a cross between Pseud's Corner and Orwell's 1984. The latter is not so fanciful since state directed culture is a feature of authoritarian and even totalitarian states. Unlike the French, and above all unlike the Germans, we do not often use the word "culture" in Britain or English-speaking countries because it sounds a little pompous in English. But when we do use it the kind of adjectives that spring to mind are "spontaneous", "individualistic", "voluntary", "innate" and so on. Culture is as much bottom up as top down. It is not something to be provided or fostered by bureaucrats.

It is interesting that Mr. Jacques Attali, until last week the president of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, who dreamt he dwelt in marble halls—and indeed ensured that for a short period he dwelt in marble halls of unparalleled opulence—spent £1.25 million on works of art to reflect "Europe's cultural and intellectual diversity". Phrases like "flowering of cultures" often go hand in hand with empire building.

There is nothing wrong with German municipalities subsidising uneconomic opera houses, if German ratepayers, in these days of severe economic recession, are still prepared to foot the Bill; but it is quite inappropriate for that to be done at Community level where European taxpayers have no say in how their money is spent. One suspects that this article has very little to do with culture as we normally understand it and more to do with the ridiculous plans to force unwilling British television viewers to watch Eurosoaps on their television screens as a substitute for American soaps such as "Dallas". We have already seen one Euro-soap in the shape of "Eldorado", with its actors from many different parts of Europe. Surely one "Eldorado" is enough. The British viewers have given their verdict upon it and do not want it overridden.

I turn briefly from culture to education. My noble friend Lord Annan made an extremely good case for more ad hoc co-operation in matters of education. But, so far as I could see, he made no case at all for a rigid, institutionalised co-operation. I agree with him on the matter of foreign languages, which was referred to by a number of noble Lords, including the noble Lord, Lord Hamilton. It would be marvellous if we all spoke western European languages better. But commercially and from a hard-headed practical point of view, it is often much more practical and advantageous to learn Japanese, Arabic, Russian and so on.

Finally, I turn to Article 57, which is the subject of Amendment No. 64. Under Article 57, which deals with mutual recognition of diplomas and degrees, would not Oxford and Cambridge Universities be obliged to accept that a first-class degree from some second rate university is equivalent to a good second-class degree from Oxford, Cambridge, or some equally fine university? Presumably those universities would be in breach of Community rules if they refused an applicant with what they regarded as an unsatisfactory degree, but a degree which the Commission regarded as satisfactory, a place to undertake postgraduate research. I should be very interested to have a reply from the noble Baroness on that point.

3.45 p.m.

Lord Stoddart of Swindon

We all know what a politically hot potato education is. In this country we have had our fill of disputes between one party and another and between this party and that party and the Government and so on. It is a very important issue. It can move people to take all kinds of actions and to make all kinds of noises. I noticed that the head of co-operation in education, Dr. Lenarduzzi, proudly said at the conference at Madrid that the Commission had already been dabbling in education even though the Treaty of Rome did not give it sufficient authority to do so. But now, under Maastricht, he could influence education Europe-wide for he would now have the funding to do so.

The question is—this point has been raised by the noble Lord, Lord Beloff—do we want the Commission and commissioner to intervene directly in out education process? Many of us—probably most of us—are very concerned about the increase in bureaucracy. It seems to us that here is another opportunity and another avenue for the intrusion of further bureaucracy into our education process.

looked at yesterday's Sunday Telegraph—I always read the Sunday Jrelegraph; I hope that I am a person who looks at all sides and weighs up all the arguments before making any decision—and was amazed to see an article which appeared to show that it was no longer elected Ministers, let alone an elected parliament, that was making decisions about education. It seems that decisions are not being taken by elected Ministers and our Parliament but by a bureaucratic conspiracy meeting regularly and secretly in All Souls. My noble friend finds that very amusing and so, too, do I. But the article is there in all seriousness in the Sunday Telegraph. As it mentions that permanent secretaries attend those meetings—I am sure that the noble Baroness will have seen the article—I feel that we are entitled to know whether or not there is any truth in the article. Perhaps the noble Baroness will mention it when she winds up.

Article 126, as we heard, requires the Community to develop the European dimension in education. We do not yet quite know what that means. It mentions languages—other noble Lords have also mentioned languages—but how far are we going in the process of insisting that languages are taught? Does it involve Welsh? I sincerely hope it does. Does it involve Gaelic? Are those languages to be compulsory in the Community? I should also like the noble Baroness to tell me what is meant by the expression "distance education" in Article 126. For example, does it mean the Open University? If so, does it mean that the Commission will be able to intervene directly in the operation of that body? Perhaps the noble Baroness can answer that question.

I have read the communique issued at Copenhagen. Presumably, it was a document adopted by that conference. Paragraph 6 of Annex I to that communiqué reads: 6. Profound changes in our education systems. The priorities here are: learning how to keep on learning throughout our lives; combining knowledge with know how; developing each individual's creativity and initiative; this is the most important one— establishing the right of each individual lo lifelong training (all young people would be given vouchers entitling them to initial education and/or training later on)". Does it mean what it says, that we will issue vouchers to all young people which they can use for either education or training at any particular time of their lives? Is that an area into which the Commission, EC—or the European Union as it will be—should seek to intervene? Are we all in favour of training vouchers?

Lord McIntosh of Haringey


Lord Stoddart of Swindon

I did not know that everyone in the Chamber was in favour of training and education vouchers. It is important to learn from the noble Baroness what the Government's view on this matter is and whether the annex to the communique means that it will be adopted by them because they are in favour of it.

These are questions that need to be answered. My noble friend appears to find it amusing that I ask these questions. The fact of the matter is that, if these questions are not asked and later on we find that they have gone by default, we shall be criticised. I do not believe it right that Parliament should be criticised for asking questions that should be asked at the time when they should be asked—that is, before the Bill passes through its final stages. I hope that the noble Baroness will be able to answer the questions I have put and will be able to satisfy me. I assure her that they are not catch questions but serious queries in my own mind, and they will be in the minds of other people.

Lord Annan

Before the noble Lord sits down, perhaps he will explain why he believes that the very first question that he asks is a serious one. Is he aware that for years I have been attending clandestine and secret meetings—that is, they would have been clandestine and secret except that nobody from the press was interested in them? They were totally open meetings to discuss educational matters. Sometimes civil servants attended, but the last meeting of that kind that I attended in that subversive college All Souls was organised by the Under-Secretary of State for Education, and he was there. I ask whether this is really a serious question.

Lord Stoddart of Swindon

I have asked the question and now I have the answer from the horse's mouth. That shows how good and proper the debate is. One asks questions and gets the answers. The Sunday Telegraph—from which I quoted—next Sunday will be able to quote the noble Lord, Lord Annan, and reassure its readers that there is no conspiracy going on and the Government are in full charge of education. I believe that this afternoon I have carried out a service to the House in getting an unqualified answer from one of the powers that be.

Lord Harris of High Cross

In the interests of further enlivening the debate, perhaps I may speak to Amendment No. 37, moved by the noble Lord, Lord Beloff. Perhaps I may take as an example the observations made by the noble Lord, Lord Stoddart, who in some respects is my old friend. He raised the question of whether we were in favour of training vouchers and got a reply from his Front Bench with which he did not agree. For me, the difficulty is that this is entirely a question for national governments. I happen to believe strongly in education vouchers more or less as a replacement for state secondary education. That is a battle I would like to fight out here and make progress upon, at times perhaps slowly and at other times more rapidly. But it seems to me to be quite pathetic to hear some speakers talk of good ideas that will improve European co-operation and also our competitiveness and then resort to compulsion. Let us embody these in this great statute. We are passing legislation, and it is a very solem n business. In dealing with the Maastricht Treaty we do not have infinite space and have to put into it those things which are of such overriding importance that not only can we get wide agreement on them—a consensus, if you will—but also we can give the proper time, attention and financial resources to support them.

The other day I noted that someone had rendered "acquis communautaire" as "le ragbag" in Franglais. We throw into the treaty everything that a pressure group comes along and tries to persuade us to entertain. As the noble Lord, Lord Beloff, has said —how irresistible he is when he holds forth on education, compared with when he holds forth on matters such as the smoking of tobacco—ministerial time is overloaded. Ministers are overstretched. They give an appearance of distraction and occasionally —indeed frequently—incompetence, but, if you raise a question with them, they will invite you to look at their diaries. Those diaries are kept by civil servants and are partly a reward and punishment system to keep them house-trained. Nevertheless, Ministers are overstretched, and we lightly throw in yet another activity so they can be called forth to meetings in Brussels to discuss what is perhaps a good scheme or a totally crackpot scheme. Ministers must be there to try to kibosh it. Perhaps time is the most limited of all resources as far as Ministers are concerned.

The noble Lord, Lord Annan, frequently admires the orations of the noble Lord, Lord Beloff. I hate to have a disagreement with the noble Lord, Lord Annan, particularly on matters of education. He is right to make observations about the inadequacy of our efforts particularly in the teaching of languages and about how we can learn from the way things are done on the Continent. He said that it was partly a matter of competitive efficiency as well as educational competence. It is clear that nations do things differently. There are reasons in history and in their culture and political systems. Above all, the whole understanding of competition is, as Hayek said, a discovery procedure whereby we watch the way other people conduct their affairs and we may learn lessons from watching them. Then we can develop our enthusiasms and win support for those views.

I find one of the most depressing features of debates in your Lordships' House on matters of this kind is the resort to coercion, which, after all, is what government is—government is coercion; it is compelling people, and compelling them now from rather further afield than we have been accustomed to in the past—rather than the development of the great voluntary tradition and enthusiasms that led to much of our own welfare systems being created by individual enthusiasts.

We should look meanly at this new item (p) of extending the competence, or incompetence, or whatever it is, of the Brussels Commission and we should get some idea of what expenditures are involved. If great outcomes are to be anticipated, that sounds rather expensive. If minor improvements are to be anticipated, I suggest that we drop it from the treaty and think of other ways of advancing our ideas.

4 p.m.

Lord Aldington

The noble Lord, Lord Harris of High Cross, made two points which I would venture to suggest to the Committee are not quite right. First, he said that the introduction of education into the Community sphere of activity is quite new. That to the knowledge of many of us and to most of your Lordships is simply not correct. For some time I have been a trustee of, and I am now chairman of, a little trust called the European Educational Research Trust, of which a number of your Lordships have been or are trustees. We have been very conscious of the assistance that we have had from the Community for many, many years—in the exchange of visits and in the learning of languages.

In fact, if I look at Article 126.2 I find an almost exact account of what the European Educational Research Trust in this country, set up at the time when the European movement was created, has been trying to do. We are no doubt matched in a lot of other countries. It is not correct to say that it is new. The reason why it is here is the same reason as my noble friend Lord Cockfield has given us as affecting a number of activities of the Community over the years which were started under Article 235. The Council of Ministers and the European Council, on the initiative of the Commission, have decided that there ought to be more specific and exact legislation setting out exactly the scope of the competence. That is what has come here.

The noble Lord's second point—I hope that the Committee has not been misled by the noble Lord —is that there is an element of coercion in this article. There is absolutely no element of coercion. The objectives are set out. Paragraph 4 states: In order to contribute to the achievement of the objectives referred to in this article, the Council:—acting in accordance with the procedure referred to in Article 1896, after consulting … shall adopt incentive measures, excluding" — excluding, not including— any harmonization of the laws and regulations of the Member States". I am very sad to hear the noble Lord, Lord Harris of High Cross, at whose feet I have sat on some economic matters for some time, making such gross errors. I hope that the Committee will take no advice from the noble Lord.

Lord Harris of High Cross

Before the noble Lord sits down, perhaps I may ask him to carry my education a little further forward. At the end of my remarks I asked the Minister to tell us what expenditure, if any, is involved. If she tells me that there is no expenditure, I shall make a full retraction for the noble Lord, Lord Aldington. If she tells me that there is expenditure which is financed by taxation, that comes slap into the middle of my category of coercion. Taking money from people to do things that someone thinks are in their interests is to me coercion. Therefore I assume that no expenditure will be involved in this matter.

Lord Aldington

The Minister will answer the noble Lord's question, but if the Community has been conducting activities over a number of years, I should be very surprised if there has been no expenditure at all. All I can tell the noble Lord is that that expenditure seems, in my opinion and in the opinion of my colleagues who work with me, to have been very well justified.

Baroness O'Cathain

Most of the comments on this series of amendments have been about education but I must take issue with my noble friend Lord Monson about the flowering of culture. Culture knows no national boundaries. Culture is international and the European Community has done an enormous amount over many years to encourage the visual arts and particularly music.

The liveliest orchestra in the world is the European Community Youth Orchestra, which is directly sponsored by the European Community. It has the youngest musicians. It has musicians from all 12 member states. It has to limit the number of British players, I am told, because there is a preponderance of them. But it does us no harm at all, although we are the musical centre of the world—I say that advisedly —to listen to orchestras from other countries. The European Commission has made that infinitely possible, particularly through the grants it has given to allow the orchestras from the erstwhile Eastern European Communist states to come to this country and to other European Community countries. No one involved in the arts in this country would say that we do not want to see or hear these people. They play music in a different way. We learn from them. It is one area where the European Community has worked and worked extraordinarily well. I think that scathing comments about European Community inervention in or messing around with the flowering of culture come amiss.

It is also the position with the visual arts. Some of the most exciting paintings from parts of the European Community have been gathered together by each member state into a collection of the European Parliament. The collection travels around the Community under the terms of the Twelve Stars exhibition. It is stunning and we all learn from it. It is an area where we ought to say that the Community has done a great job and we hope that it will continue to do so.

Lord Monson

Before my noble friend sits down, I too would agree that it is an admirable and pleasurable activity to listen to young musicians from other countries. However, does she not agree that this is already happening without any need for the Maastricht Treaty and with no mention of the flowering of cultures? Indeed, it could happen without the need for any Community participation. As it happens, the Community funds it, but it could well be funded from other sources. So although I agree with the excellence of the idea, it is not something that the Bill has anything to do with.

Baroness O'Cathain

I must reply. That is not true. When one finds that national governments, local authorities and companies which are the main sponsors of the arts are finding it increasingly difficult to find the large sums required to pay the salaries of the musicians, their travelling costs and their hotel costs, it is absolutely essential to have Community intervention in this area. Without the European Community the cultural life of this city would have been a good deal poorer over the past few years.

Lord Wedderburn of Charlton

The noble Baroness appears to have encapsulated one of the difficulties of this discussion. I have not previously intervened in the debates on this Bill, but on reading them it seems to me that they are so often couched in a yes/no answer to the question of whether what is in the treaty will be good for us without there being a great deal of evidence. The Community already provides support in various ways—not merely through the Commission —to, in my case, higher education. I am well aware that British higher education has been internationalised to a remarkable degree in the past 10 years. I agree with the noble Lord, Lord Annan, that there are a good many things that need to be put right. He mentioned the sixth-form spread of subjects. There is the problem of the admission of students both from overseas and from this country. What the Government have to do in the face of these problems and this paragraph of the treaty is to say in what manner this part of the treaty will lead to an effective answer to or amelioration of those problems. It seems to me to be a pragmatic matter which is why I am opposed to the treaty without the social chapter. In my judgment it will be less than useful to the citizens of this country. It is a pragmatic issue.

It is true, as the noble Lord, Lord Annan said, that higher education, for all its problems—many of which have been created by the Government—is something to which those in France and Italy, about which I can speak with some experience, look with a certain degree of envy and sometimes affection concerning the exchange of scholars which is growing in number and continuing. It is true, for example, that the ERASMUS scheme has provided great support in money which otherwise would not have been there for the exchange of students and staff. It is also true that more people have come here than have gone to other countries.

But in what particular manner will all those problems be addressed by what follows in the treaty without—and this is a genuine doubt—undue bureaucratisation which, frankly, is something which the Commission itself knows very well holds up on occasions the ERASMUS scheme as much as our failings here?

The other feature of the debate which was expressed in response to the speech of the noble Lord, Lord Beloff, when moving this amendment, is highly extraordinary. I agree only rarely with the noble Lord, but in full only from time to long time. But to suggest from what he actually said that he was speaking as a little Englander was an atrocious misrepresentation and one which, when we read Hansard, we shall discover is not true. Therefore, it is necessary both for those noble Lords moving amendments and for those whose eyes are on the Community and sometimes on that alone, to give pragmatic answers and to put forward genuine proposals about what they believe will happen. I look forward with interest to what the Government can say in a really pragmatic way about this part of the treaty which seems to have been the subject of very little discussion prior to this debate.

Lord Monson

As it is Committee stage I believe that I have the right to speak again. The noble Lord, Lord Aldington, told us that no coercion was involved in the group of amendments to which we are speaking. I revert to Article 57 which is the subject of Amendment No. 64 and part of this group. That article provides that there shall be directives enforcing mutual recognition of degrees and professional qualifications. I have already given instances of the kinds of problems that these directives might impose on universities.

But what about professional qualifications? I wish that I did not have to speak to this matter because I thought that some other Member of the Committee might do so. Under Article 57 Brussels will alter the training requirements of the various professions and alter access to them. Will the lawyers, doctors, architects and engineers of this country accept that their professional body should now be overruled by a directive from Brussels? Surely not. The only way to stop that is to exclude from the law this part of the treaty.

As I understand it, is it also the case that an English doctor will be entitled to practise anywhere in Europe even though he cannot speak a word of the local language? Conversely, will a foreign doctor from another part of the EC be able to practise here even though he cannot speak or understand English? We deserve answers to those questions.

4.15 p.m

Lord Cockfield

I had not intended to intervene in this matter until I heard the intervention of the noble Lord, Lord Monson, which is of course completely and totally inaccurate as usual. When we speak of education, what is needed is education in your Lordships' House about the provisions of the European treaties and the policies and practices concerned. I was directly responsible for the directives providing for the freedom of practice of the professions in the European Community. They arise under the specific provisions of the Treaty of Rome itself either under the right of establishment or under the right of the provision of services.

They have been enormously successful. They have opened up for this country great opportunities for professional men, trained in this country, to practise in the European Community. To the extent that we take pride in the level of professional competence in this country—and I am sure that we all do, including the noble Lord, Lord Monson—we should support these measures enabling our professional people to exercise their skills throughout the Community to the great advantage both of this country and of the countries in which they practise.

Lord Monson

I was not making allegations, but asking questions which I thought the noble Lord might answer thereby relieving the noble Baroness of the burden, but he has not done so. He has not answered my questions about language ability, for example, so I shall wait to hear from the noble Baroness the answer to my questions.

Baroness Elles

I had not intended to speak on this amendment, but in view of the comments of the noble Lord, Lord Wedderburn, for whom I have the greatest respect, perhaps I may respond to them. As an MEP of the Thames Valley and chairman of an organisation called Target, which was set up under the COMETT programme of the European Community to study across the Community the question of skill shortages and to look for best practises throughout those countries linking industry, universities and other training providers, I must say that from our side we have had the greatest co-operation and help from the officials of the EC and in particular from DG V. I make a particular point of that because the members do not necessarily belong to my political party. We have had nothing but good co-operation and help. Very productive studies have been carried out in the light of these particular problems.

Lord McIntosh of Haringey

I decided over the week-end to establish a prize which would be a small, non-monetary token, for the xenophobic remark of the day as this Bill proceeds through its various stages in your Lordships' House. Unfortunately, there has not been any candidate so far. I have decided to set up a second prize for the conspiratorial theory of the day. Without prejudice to whatever might happen later on today, I say to my noble friend Lord Stoddart, that he is a strong candidate for the award from the start. If he from these Benches begins to take his conspiratorial theories from the Sunday Telegraph, then he really must be aware of the All Souls group to which he refers. It was founded by R.A. Butler in 1942. It has consisted of a distinguished and not particularly closed group of educationists working in schools, colleges and universities, education departments of local authorities, central government, journalists and education theorists, which is also a bad thing. They met not in All Souls, but more recently at Rhodes House, Oxford. That body has never been a secret and its membership has never been secret. The idea that the Sunday Telegraph should have discovered it yesterday and my noble friend today is a little disappointing. I will bear my noble friend's name in mind and unless something better comes along he shall have my prize for Monday 28th June.

The noble Lord, Lord Beloff, in introducing this amendment, made a robust defence of Amendment No, 37 which he said was not merely a token amendment but one which contained something because it took out particularly objectionable words. I acknowledge his concern for the wording of the amendment and I wish to look at the amendments in this group. The meat of the amendment is not particularly in Article 3(p) which is simply a preamble to later articles. Neither is the meat in Article 57. That article, curiously and historically, is almost entirely about self-employment and the recognition of qualifications which would be helpful in encouraging self-employment. Much of Article 57 appeared in earlier treaties and is not new to the Maastricht Treaty.

The meat of this group of amendments is in Article 126 dealing with education; in Article 127 on vocational training and Article 128 on culture. I have to disappoint —or relieve the minds of—a number of noble Lords as regards what the articles actually say because the noble Lord, Lord Annan, has hopes from them while many others, including my noble friend Lord Wedderburn, have fears. In fact, paragraph 1 of Article 126 states that the Community recognises the responsibility of member states for the content of teaching, for the organisation of education systems and for the preservation—or whatever the word is —of "cultural and linguistic diversity". So all noble Lords who have spoken on the assumption that the Community will take responsibility either for the content of teaching or for the organisation of education systems are in for a sad disappointment because that is not what is intended.

Paragraph 2 of Article 126 refers to, the teaching and dissemination of the languages of the Member States". It then refers to encouraging the mobility of students and teachers and the necessity, for that purpose, of the recognition of academic qualifications across national boundaries. It refers also to promoting co-operation between educational establishments and to the development of youth exchanges and "distance education". That phrase caused some difficulty to my noble friend Lord Stoddart but distance education is, I hope, one of the leading areas in which we are developing, and in which we need to develop, because one of the main problems of inequality of opportunity in education and of inequality of access to education is the lack of a coherent and universal availability of distance education.

The Open University is a distinguished example of that and I am sorry that the noble Baroness, Lady Carnegy, with her distinguished role on the council of the OU, is no longer in her place. The Open University is one such example among many others, including our traditional higher education institutions and many outwith those institutions. As all involved in distance education will recognise, national frontiers have no place in distance education. The support of European institutions right from the days of the 1950s and 1960s in the Council of Europe has been a major contribution to the development of distance education. It is only this Government, with their reluctance to ensure funding, particularly for adult education, who fall behind some of the praiseworthy experiments and developments which have been taking place in Europe.

Article 127 relates to vocational training. Again, I must disappoint those noble Lords who expect major and expensive initiatives from the European Community because paragraph 1 states that its function is to, support and supplement the action of the Member States ' Paragraph 2 refers to the need for training and retraining in order to adapt to industrial change, and for access, mobility and co-operation.

I confess that I am more doubtful about some aspects of Article 128 which relates to culture. I think that we all like to think of this article as relating to the arts. That is what, in normal English terminology, we mean by "culture". I have some doubts about whether European action can encourage, as the article states, artistic and literary creation, including in the audiovisual sector". I do not think that artistic and literary creation are suitable objectives for government, whether European-wide, nationwide or even local.

The noble Lord, Lord Beloff, described those provisions as "usurpations" because he said that they were not in the Treaty of Rome. Turning to his area of expertise—I speak very delicately—I wonder whether he would recognise that since the Middle Ages there have been two models of university education in Europe and therefore throughout the world. One has been the Oxford model, which has been centred on individual institutions recognising their own qualifications, with lesser recognition of the qualifications of others. The other has been the Bologna model, which then developed in Germany and to a lesser extent in France. It has been predicated on the transferability of knowledge by the movement of students and teachers throughout the civilised world. I hope—it is no more than a hope—that these articles in the Maastricht Treaty will help us not to supplant the Oxford model with the Bologna model, but to recognise the virtues of greater co-operation and of movement and understandingetween peoples. I hope that the Committee will not see fit to approve the amendments.

Baroness Chalker of Wallasey

As we have already heard from the noble Lord, Lord McIntosh, Amendment No. 37, which seeks to leave out the references to education, training and culture in Article 3(p) of the treaty, is perhaps less of a key amendment in this group. However, I should point out to the Committee that Article 3(p) limits the Community to making a contribution in these fields, thus leaving the primary responsibility to member states, which is exactly where that primary responsibility should lie.

Under the existing pre-Maastricht Article 128 of the Treaty of Rome (on vocational training), policy decisions are taken by a simple majority vote. On occasions, that article has been used as a legal base for Community activity on education. However, under the Maastricht Treaty that will be replaced by separate articles on education and training, each of which sets a clearer and narrower focus for Community activity in those areas, yet Amendments Nos. 148 and 149 seek to leave out new Articles 126 (which deals with education) and 127 (which deals with vocational training).

Before I answer noble Lords' questions, perhaps I may just say a few words about new Article 126. It sets out six areas for Community action: the European dimension in education; student and teacher mobility and mutual recognition of academic qualifications; co-operation between educational establishments; exchanges of information and experience; youth exchanges; and distance learning. I believe that that means real opportunities for UK education. As the noble Lord, Lord Annan, said, we have things to learn from others, just as they have much to learn from us. The article will help to foster better co-operation between member states because it will give students and school children alike a European dimension to their education which I believe to be vital if we are to meet the challenges of the single market and all that that entails.

There has been frequent comment about one of the EC's education programmes, ERASMUS. Others include LINGUA and COMETT, which was mentioned by my noble friend Lady Elles. They have been adopted under the existing Articles 128 and 325 of the EC treaty to the great benefit of the United Kingdom's universities. Besides the excellent example which was given by my noble friend Lady Elles, COMETT has helped to link UK universities with industry across Europe. To my mind, that is a vital development in ensuring that all our universities teach the skills that are needed in industry. LINGUA has assisted the teaching of foreign languages and, as the noble Lord, Lord Desai, said, ERASMUS has also helped greatly. More than 25,000 UK students have spent part of their time at university studying in the Community. That has been a real bonus for language training. The UK is a leading—often the leading—participant in all those programmes. One has only to look at the number of UK students who have benefited from those courses to know just how good they have been for Britain.

The advantage of setting out the EC's education target in a new article is that Article 126 makes it clear that the Community's role in the education field is to encourage co-operation between member states. It states that the Community, "shall adopt incentive measures"—I shall come to those in a moment—and recommendations, but not measures to harmonise member states' laws and regulations. If Members of the Committee would care to look at any of the articles involved here they would read the words "excluding any harmonization". That is right.

The noble Baroness, Lady Seear, spoke about the importance of vocational training. Article 127 specifies five areas. We believe it to be an improvement on the existing Article 128 of the Treaty of Rome for two reasons: first, the voting basis will change the simple majority to a qualified majority voting; and, secondly, again the new article rules out harmonising measures.

My noble friend Lord Beloff asked me a number of questions when he moved the first amendment. He asked what Community co-operation would cover. It will cover the European dimension in education, particularly of language learning; the mobility of the students and teachers; co-operation between educational establishments; and the exchange of information and experience. I add, in response to my noble friend Lady Carnegy of Lour, that distance education and youth exchanges feature specifically as targets for Community action. I re-emphasise that member states will retain responsibility for the organisation of education systems and the content of teaching. The Community's role will be to support and to complement the action.

My noble friend Lord Beloff asked about the word "contribution". The key words in Article 3(p) are that the Community shall make, a contribution to education and training". All that is meant by that is that the Community will continue the type of programmes that it undertakes currently such as ERASMUS. He asked me about the budget for ERASMUS. For 1993, the total budget is £54 million. The noble Lord, Lord Harris of Highcroft, also referred to that topic. ERASMUS, which has so well promoted student mobility from which we have benefited more than anyone else, is considered to be good value for money. There is no question of the harmonisation of academic years. I believe that it was my noble friend Lord Beloff, or it may have been another Member of the Committee, who asked me that question.

There is no question of forcing the teaching or learning of any particular language. As the noble Lord, Lord Thomson of Monifieth, said, it is useful when one can converse in other European languages, not just in Council meetings but alongside them. I say to my noble friend Lord Hamilton of Dalzell that I have been grateful to those teachers who for many years, before ERASMUS and all the other schemes, forced me to learn languages which I use literally weekly and frequently daily in my work. I was one of those who perhaps had the luck to go to Heidelberg as a youngster. That has seen me through many difficult circumstances because I could understand what I was not supposed to understand. I could also ensure that I spoke with a little more knowledge to those of my colleagues who had not had the good fortune from which I had benefited.

I was much amused by the comments of the noble Lord, Lord Stoddart, about the Sunday Telegraph. I can assure him, as did the noble Lord, Lord Annan, that there is no conspiracy. Distance education is the Open University for us. But there is also one other scheme which is not essentially a European scheme. It is the Commonwealth distance learning scheme, which is just getting off the ground. There is no boundary to those schemes, but it seems to me to be common sense that other students within Europe should benefit from all distance learning schemes. I know that the noble Lord, Lord Stoddart, as the noble Lord, Lord McIntosh, said, has a conspiracy theory about all matters emanating from Brussels. But just let me tell him that there is no conspiracy emanating from the Copenhagen conclusions about which he asked me. He referred to Annex 1 to those conclusions. It was a paper presented by the President of the Commission to the Council. The Council's conclusions, to which the noble Lord referred, welcomed the presentation arid asked the Commission to present a White Paper on the medium-term strategy for growth, competitiveness and employment before the December Council. The Council did not decide to implement the Commission President's proposals. So it is not true that we have agreed a voucher system, as the noble Lord suggested.

There is a rolling programme of training credits. I believe that the UK was one of the first to try to ensure that young people could benefit from a variety of training opportunities. We are happy to share what seems to us to be good practice with others in the Community. There is no truth in what the noble Lord said about a voucher scheme being agreed across the Community. I give way to the noble Lord.

Lord Stoddart of Swindon

I was not stating that; I was asking the Minister what the status of the document was. I am obliged to her for explaining it.

Baroness Chalker of Wallasey

I am grateful to the noble Lord. I apologise, but my shorthand is not as good as it used to be. I might need to go back to distance learning to improve it. One further point on distance learning was raised. It was whether the Commission would have any scope to intervene in the operation of the Open University. I can assure the noble Lord, Lord Stoddart, that the treaty does not give the Commission such scope.

There were many other interesting contributions. I must tackle one which was not answered by my noble friend Lord Cockfield when he put right the noble Lord, Lord Monson, on a number of points. It related to what languages would be necessary to practise with a mutually recognised qualification. I can tell the noble Lord, Lord Monson, that it is not just doctors who have to be able to speak the language of the country in which they practise. It applies also to veterinary surgeons, because it is most important that a dog that understands commands in English should be spoken to in English. I hope that puts the noble Lords mind at rest.

A number of other points were made. The noble Baroness, Lady O'Cathain, answered the noble Lord, Lord Monson. I must say that I agreed with everything that the noble Baroness said, and I shall not repeat it. I found it amusing for Commission officials in Brussels to be blamed for "Eldorado". I doubt whether they, like the rest of us, have ever had time to see it. There were other comments about other languages. I have found there to be a great welcome not just for the learning of European languages but of Russian, Japanese and Arabic, because the most important thing is that we can communicate across borders: certainly education knows no boundaries.

The noble Lord, Lord Annan, made some interesting comments about the schools system and the important discipline contained in the baccalaureate. I shall bring all his comments to the notice of my noble friend Lady Match because I suspect that she, like I, will agree with much of what he had to say. The question of how to get the very best out of education is the one that we must address, and I know that that is something that he does at ad times.

Amendment No. 150 which was dealt with by the noble Baroness, Lady O'Cathain, is not quite the hotbed of trouble that I think the noble Lord, Lord Monson, believed. I agree that some of the language is not the language that we would choose, but I believe that Article 128 provides a clear definition of what it is appropriate for the Community to do in the cultural field. It contains some sensible areas: for example, the improvement of the knowledge of European culture, the conservation of the cultural heritage of European significance and so on.

The final point that I make is that not only is harmonisation of member states' laws and regulations ruled out but also the recommendations must be adopted by unanimity. That is very important.

The noble Lord, Lord Monson, asked about Article 57, the subject of Amendment No. 64. I assure the noble Lord that it deals with the activities of self-employed persons. It provides for the mutual recognition of qualifications in order to help the free mobility of workers, something which the British Government and Her Majesty's Opposition have supported all along. It will not prevent Oxford and Cambridge giving whatever weight they choose to first class degrees, whether obtained at other universities in Britain or elsewhere in the EC. It is not the problem which the noble Lord perceives it to he.

The articles with which the amendments deal are ones where the Maastricht Treaty brings about a useful improvement in the existing situation. They set out the limits on Community action in areas that were previously too vague and elastic. Harmonising measures are specifically ruled out. That is one of the advantages which the Maastricht Treaty will bring. I urge the Committee to reject Amendment No. 37 and all that goes with it.

Lord Beloff

Because amendments are grouped together, the debate has ranged over a rather large number of issues. However, we can return to the central issue. First, there is general agreement that contact between the educational systems of different countries and the mobility of students, scholars and pupils are and always have been a part of the European scene. If time were no object I might engage in a long and interesting discussion with the noble Lord, Lord McIntosh, as to whether or not there were different models of that in the Middle Ages. The fact is that it exists and we all approve of it.

The only question is whether this is the appropriate machinery for conducting such activity or giving it support. The claim which I made—and so far it has not been challenged, and indeed it was echoed to some extent by the noble Lord, Lord McIntosh—was that the Council of Europe, with its much wider membership, has always been a more appropriate body than the Community to sponsor those matters. If the noble Lord would look at the report that I prepared for the Council of Europe in 1957, Europe and the Europeans, I think that he will find that argument set out at that time.

The difficulty is that, although I naturally accept the assurances of the Minister when she points out that there is no question of undue harmonisation were the Commission to take up these matters, there is within that organisation an instinct towards conformity. Indeed, one example was given by my noble friend Lady Carnegy of Lour; that is, that the Open University is handicapped in spreading its offerings, which are of high quality, because the Commission insists that students living further away, whose tuition under the system is bound to be more expensive, may not be charged more than those who live within a mile or two of Milton Keynes.

That is the kind of problem which we shall continue to face in anything with which the Commission has to do. It seems to me that our principal need is not contacts with other members of the Community: the really important bridges to build at present are bridges with Eastern Europe and in particular with the countries now emerging from the Soviet Union. I believe that the accent of the narrow and inward-looking group of 12 is upon its own affairs. By all means let everybody learn French and German; but what about learning Russian? I believe that to accept that assumption of responsibility by the Commission is to repudiate the wider arena in which we need to act. I need not refer to our Commonwealth and American links on the education and academic side. Therefore, I feel bound to test the opinion of the Committee on Amendment No. 37.

4.45 p.m.

On Question, Whether the said amendment (No. 37) shall be agreed to?

*Their Lordships divided: Contents, 30; Not-Contents, 207.

Division No. 1
Belhaven and Stenton, L. Hamilton of Dalzell, L.
Beloff, L. Harris of High Cross, L.
Bruce of Donington, L. Jay, L.
Cross, V. Jenkins of Putney, L.
Dacre of Glanton, L. Molloy, L.
Dormand of Easington, L. Monson, L.
Galpern, L. Moran, L.
Gray, L. Morris, L.
Halsbury, E. Onslow, E.
Orkney, E. Sudeley, L.
Parry, L. Swinfen, L.
Pearson of Rannoch, L. Tebbit, L.
Rankeillour, L. Tonypandy, V.
Sandys, L. Wedderburn of Charlton, L.
Stoddart of Swindon, L. [Teller.] Willoughby de Broke, L. [Teller.]
Ackner, L. Gladwyn, L.
Addison, V. Goschen, V.
Aldington, L. Graham of Edmonton, L.
Alexander of Tunis, E. Gray of Contin, L.
Allen of Abbeydale, L. Grey, E.
Annan, L. Gridley, L.
Archer of Sandwell, L. Hacking, L.
Ardwick, L. Hailsham of Saint Marylebone, L.
Arran, E.
Astor, V. Hampton, L.
Attlee, E. Han worth, V.
Auckland, L. Harding of Petherton, L.
Aylestone, L. Harmar-Nicholls, L.
Barber, L. Harmsworth, L.
Bellwin, L. Harris of Greenwich, L.
Belstead, L. Harvington, L.
Bethell, L. Hayhoe, L.
Birdwood, L. Henderson of Brompton, L.
Blatch, B. Henley, L.
Blyth, L. Hesketh, L. [Teller.]
Boardman, L. Hilton of Eggardon, B.
Bonham-Carter, L. Hirshfield, L.
Borthwick, L. Holderness, L.
Boston of Faversham, L. Hollis of Heigham, B.
Boyd-Carpenter, L. Holme of Cheltenham, L.
Bridges, L. HolmPatrick, L.
Brightman, L. Hood, V.
Brigstocke, B. Hothfield, L.
Brougham and Vaux, L. Howe, E.
Bruntisfield, L. Hughes, L.
Butterworth, L. Hylton-Foster, B.
Cadman, L. Inglewood, L.
Caithness, E. Jenkins of Hillhead, L.
Caldecote, V. Johnston of Rockport, L.
Campbell of Alloway, L. Kintore, E.
Campbell of Croy, L. Knollys, V.
Carmichael of Kelvingrove, L. Lane of Horsell, L.
Carnegy of Lour, B. Lauderdale, E.
Carnock, L. Lawrence, L.
Carr of Hadley, L. Leigh, L.
Carter, L. Listowel, E.
Cavendish of Furness, L. Liverpool, E.
Chalfont, L. Lloyd-George of Dwyfor, E.
Chalker of Wallasey, B. Long, V.
Charteris of Amisfield, L. Lucas of Chilworth, L.
Chelmsford, V. McIntosh of Haringey, L.
Clark of Kempston, L Mackay of Ardbrecknish, L.
Clinton-Davis, L. Mackay of Clashfern, L.
Cockfield, L. [Lord Chancellor.]
Constantine of Stanmore, L. Macleod of Borve, B.
Craigavon, V. Macpherson of Drumochter, L.
Cranborne, V. Mancroft, L.
Cullen of Ashbourne, L. Manton, L.
Cumberlege, B. Marlesford, L.
Davidson, V. Mason of Barnsley, L.
Denham, L. Mayhew, L.
Denton of Wakefield, B. Merrivale, L.
Desai, L. Mersey, V.
Elibank, L. Milner of Leeds, L.
Elles, B. Montgomery of Alamein, V.
Elliot of Harwood, B. Morris of Castle Morris, L.
Elliott of Morpeth, L. Mottistone, L.
Elton, L. Mulley, L.
Ennals, L. Murton of Lindisfarne, L.
Fanshawe of Richmond, L. Napier and Ettrick, L.
Ferrers, E. Nathan, L.
Flather, B. Nelson, E.
Foley, L. Nicol, B.
Fraser of Carmyllie, L. O'Cathain, B.
Fraser of Kilmorack, L. Ogmore, L.
Gilmour of Craigmillar, L. Oxfuird, V.
Palmer, L. Slynn of Hadley, L.
Park of Monmouth, B. Stedman, B.
Pender, L. Strafford, E.
Peston, L. Strathcarron, L.
Peyton of Yeovil, L. Strathclyde, L.
Pitt of Hampstead, L. Strathmore and Kinghorne, E. [Teller.]
Plant of Highfield, L.
Plumb, L. Taylor of Blackburn, L.
Porritt, L. Terrington, L.
Pym, L. Thomas of Gwydir, L.
Reay, L. Thomas of Swynnerton, L.
Redesdale, L. Thomson of Monifieth, L.
Renton, L. Thurlow, L.
Richard, L. Tordoff, L.
Rippon of Hexham, L. Torrington, V.
Robson of Kiddington, B. Trefgarne, L.
Rodger of Earlsferry, L. Trumpington, B.
Rodney, L. Turner of Camden, B.
Roll of Ipsden, L. Ullswater, V.
Romney, E. Vaux of Harrowden, L.
Russell, E. Wakeham, L.
Sainsbury, L. [Lord Privy Seal.]
St. Davids, V. Wallace of Coslany, L.
St. John of Bletso, L. Walton of Detchant, L.
Saltoun of Abernethy, Ly. Waverley, V.
Sanderson of Bowden, L. Westbury, L.
Seccombe, B. White, B.
Seear, B. Whitelaw, V.
Shackleton, L. Wilberforce, L.
Shepherd, L. Williams of Mostyn, L.
Sherfield, L. Wilson of Tillyorn, L.
Shrewsbury, E. Winchilsea and Nottingham, E.
Simon of Glaisdale, L. Wise, L.
Skelmersdale, L. Wynford, L.
Slim, V. Young, B.

[*The Tellers for the Not-Contents reported 207 names. The Clerks recorded 208 names.]

Resolved in the negative, and amendment disagreed to accordingly.

4.55 p.m.

Baroness Trumpington

I beg to move that the House do now resume.

Moved accordingly, and, on Question, Motion agreed to.

House resumed.