asked the President of the Board of Education the total number of mentally deficient children in Great Britain now receiving education in special schools; whether he is considering further developments of such institutions in the near future; and whether the teachers are required to have special qualifications?
§ Sir C. TREVELYAN
The number of mentally deficient children attending certified special schools in England and Wales for the year ending 31st December, 1928, was 15,339. For information in regard to Scotland I would refer the hon. Member to the Secretary of State for Scotland. As regards the second part of the question, the hon. Member will be aware that a Joint Committee of the Board of Education and the Board of48W Control have recently presented a Report which is receiving my careful consideration. I am sending the hon. Member a copy of a memorandum indicating the requirements in regard to teachers in schools for mentally defective children.
asked the President of the Board of Education the comparative cost of educating a normal child, a blind child, a deaf child, and a mentally-defective child, respectively; and whether part of this cost could be saved in future years by a judicious health expenditure in infant years by the development and extension of infant-welfare centres?
§ Sir C. TREVELYAN
The cost per child in an ordinary elementary school in 1927–28 was £11 15s. 4d. According to the latest statistics available, the cost (excluding loan charges) of educating a blind child is approximately £29 in a day school and £88 in a residential school, the corresponding figures for the deaf being £43 and £82, and for the mentally defective £25 and £71. The second part of the hon. Member's question raises issues which it is difficult to deal with in the limits of an answer to a question.