§ Captain WARING
asked the Secretary for Scotland whether he is aware that the amalgamation of the Banff Landward and 1330W Ord and the burgh school boards has been in operation for six months and that none of the Landward board members have yet attended a meeting of the new board; that their abstention is approved by the whole of the Landward community, who opposed the amalgamation as being against the educational interests of the parish; that the children from the Landward parts are unable to attend the burgh school on account of the distance and the impassable condition of the roads; and that the school rate has been raised by 4d. per £, for which they receive no educational or other advantage; and whether he will cause an inquiry to be made into the facts stated and order a reversal to the status quo ante?
Mr. McKINNON WOOD
I have been informed within the last few days that no Landward members of the Banff School Board have yet attended a meeting of the Board, but it is in their option to do so or to resign their positions. I may refer my hon. Friend to Section 16 of the Education (Scotland) Act, 1878. There are schools in the Landward portion of the parish as heretofore, and there is no obligation on the children in these parts to attend the burgh school unless they find it to their advantage to do so, as a considerable number have always done. The amalgamation of the two previous school board districts was effected under Section 22 of the Education (Scotland) Act, 1908, after full inquiry at which the views of both boards and their constituents were fully considered, and I am not prepared to hold a further inquiry or to reverse the decision arrived at.