HC Deb 13 November 1952 vol 507 cc95-6W
137. Sir H. Williams

asked the Minister of Education if she is aware that despite an increase in the grants to local education authorities from £173,678,000 in 1951–52 to £183,953,000, those who, three years after leaving school, join Her Majesty's Forces, are to the extent of one in five in need of re-education so as to enable them to perform their duties in the Armed Forces; and what steps she is taking to avoid this in future.

Mr. Pickthorn

My right hon. Friend is aware that about one in five of the National Service men who joined the Army in the year ending June, 1952, were classified as backward, but not illiterate, though these young men, most of whom left school at least three years ago, cannot be affected by an increase in the level of grant-earning expenditure incurred by local education authorities this year. As she has explained to my hon. Friend "backward" is a relative term, but she is constantly endeavouring to raise the general standard of education in the schools.

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