Cuddio Rhestr Erthyglau

9 erthygl ar y dudalen hon



EDUCATION IN ENGLAND AND r WALES. In tbe Houst of Commoi s, on Friday nio-ht, S.r John Gorst ( Vice-P.-esideiit of tue Couacil 0: Education), in making the annual statement 'm education, said tie amount of the vote wis £ B,75S;5i6, an mcr-ase of £ 180,000 over that cf lust year. Tl ere had been in the past year a satisfactory j rcgrfcs-s in public opinion on the subject c' educa- tion. The first, and greatest, wstacxe which he mentioned last year was tl e early age at which c^idren left school. Reform 1 in this matter was not only necessary m it- « tI self, but without it all other reforms in edu- cation would be most unsatisfactory. He was very sorry to say that the proportion of children who were kept at school aftei the ca compulsory limit in the absolute number had increased, but the relative number re-- mained stationary. With regard to regul- arity of attendance it was of very little use amending the law unless local authorities and local opinion would sanction it beirg put into force. The claims ot labour in many cases seemed to b- very much more urgent than the claims of education. Un- doubtedly. there was an im-i-neuse number of cases 111 which children who ought- to be attending school as full-time scholars were employed to such an extent in labour that they came to school quite urfit to receive any intellectual instruction at all. With reference to the supply of teachers, the de- ficiency was a very serious difficulty in the elementary education cf the country, and if the attdanc should become greater and the age be raised so as to bring mere children into the schools, the pressure for the of teachers would become still greater. He had endeavoured to follow Mr AcUnid's policy of attracting more teach- ers intc the profession. Mr hooed something would be clone fyr tL protection cf t'sc ttrMren who had t J work while attsndi;g scliccl. M II. Lewis advecatcd: a completed State system of education, with fairpiay to every class and ev-.jry interest. Mr Birrell, iir Cripp*, and Major Rasch, j having spoken, Mr T. O'Conncr pleaded the cause of Catholic maintenance of their own schools. Mr Lloyd-George protested against the observation of the last speaker, who blamed hon. members on that side of the Hou-o who had resented the action of Irish members in fighting for their cwn schools. What they objected to was that Irish mem- bers should think fit, in the interest of their own schools, not merely to support- the grant of os to poor and necessitous schools, but toi support a system which forced Nonconformist children to go into school where they suffered great injustice. He i'vlr Lloyd George) instanced a case in the Rhonuda Valley where the Protestant sections agreed as to the fcrm of the re- ligious taaching in the State schcol, and desired to know why on earth the same thing could not be-adopted in other parts of the United Kingdom. There was nothing taught in the board schools to which th2 noble lord the. member for Ro- chester (Lord Cranborne) could object, ¡ cept that there was nothing so objectionable as not having your own creed taught at the expense of everybody else and forced upon eveiycody else. "W hile pleading for his own schools, the noble lord was seeking to force two or three millions of Dissenters' children into those schools, where they were treated worse than the Mahommedians in Inuia. ("Oh, oh."). He complained of the manner in which school boards were treated by the Education Department, and said that over and over again the interests of the children had been sacrificed to the interests of a sect. When, protection was claimed on religious ground, it was the duty of the Vice-President to administer the law, and ..e ad not done it. Wuen children claimed the protection of the conscience clause, they were held up to con- t tempt in the parish church. Mr J. G. Talbot ijid the parents fail to obta n the protection of the conscience clause? (hear, hear). Mr Lloyd George said that was not his point at all, but they were now getti- me answer from the quarter which was really the ) authority (cheers). The Education Depart- ment was not under the direction of the Vice-President, but under the junta of clerical members who managed the Educa- tion Department and he Government (cheers). He contended that Sir J. Gorst had done nothing to carry out the great pro- posals which he had embodied in magazine articles and referred to elsewhere, and that the Education Department was working purely and simplv in the interests of clerical supporters. Sir John Lubbock urge.- that more atten- tion should be paiei to history and element- ary science. Mr Yosall condemned the present pupil teacher system, and insisted that teachers should be more adequately paid. Mr Bryce pointed out -at our elementary schools fell far short of the standard reached in Scotland, Germany, and Switzerland, and suggested that sufficient effort was not made to lay a sound educational basis. Mr J. G. Talbot thought an amendment of the present state of things could only be brought about, not "y strong speeches in that House, but by the education of the people of tne country. Mil Samuel Smith suggested that children in rural districts might oe allowed to leave school for the summer months, when they were needed for agricultural work, at the age of eleven, on the understanding that they should attend for two years longer du- ring the winter. Mr Herbert Roberts agreed that no real porgress was likely to be made with the education of the country till the House realised the necessity of making every volun- tary school absolutely efficient. After further discussion, Sir John Gorst, in a brief review of the debate, denied that the Committee of Coun- cil had been influenced by any members of the House outside their own body, and de- clared that the code in its present form was the work, not of the Education Department, but of the House of Commons itself, which had carried various amendments to it. He also admitted that there was a nee.. for some alteration in the present system of teachers employment, but intimated, amid much laughter, that on the subject of Liverpool catechism he would rather not speak ti 1 • had had an opportunity o. consulting wi the President of the Committee. With re- gard to the charges of tyranny against ^on" conformist pupil teache/s, he had been absolutely unable to get any concrete case. The Committee dividing, there voled For the amendment. 71 Against 155 Mr Lloyd George moved to report pro- gress, on the ground that other educational matters should be discussed, but the Chair- man did not put the motion, and Mr A. J. Balfour just before midnight, proposed the closure. There was loud protests from l-üe Opposition benches, but tne proposal was carried by 153 to 63. xiie Education Vote was then agreed to without a division, and progress was reported.





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