HC Deb 08 March 1920 vol 126 c932W

asked the President of the Board of Education whether, under the Education Act, 1918, it has been ruled that a local education authority is bound to meet the total cost of sending school children to holiday or school camps; that school journeys have been conducted for nearly 20 years by the voluntary efforts of the teachers, in some cases the parents of the children bearing the expense, and in others the cost being defrayed from funds raised from concerts, bazaars, subscriptions, &c.; whether he is aware that in consequence of this ruling the number of children to be taken on school journeys in the London area is to be limited to a very low percentage, although there are funds collected for the purpose of sending many more children, and in a great many other cases parents are willing to pay; and whether ho can take any action which will enable the work of former years to continue at least for this year?


The Board of Education are not responsible for any such ruling as is referred to. The principle of Section 26 of the Act is that all children attending Public Elementary Schools, whatever their parents' means, should have equal opportunity of enjoying the educational advantages afforded by the schools. The Section prohibits the making of charges on the parents for these advantages, but it does not appear to my right hon. Friend to prohibit the collection of funds in the various ways suggested and their application to augment the funds which the Local Education Authority is willing to provide out of the rates for special purposes. My right hon. Friend hopes most sincerely that the good work which has been done in London will not be restricted, but he has no authority either to interpret the Act or to override its provisions.