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Personal Explanation

Volume 221: debated on Thursday 30 July 1874

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I wish, Sir, to inform the House of the names of the gentlemen who have been appointed to the vacant post of Endowed Schools Commissioners, and I hope I may be allowed to do so without waiting for the Order of the Day for the Third Beading of the Bill, lest I should be precluded from entering into any debate if it should occur. The additional Charity Commissioner is Mr. Longley, at present Chief Inspector of the Local Government Board in the Metropolitan District. The two Endowment Commissioners are—first of all, Canon Robinson, member of the former Commission, who will, therefore, be able to afford to the new Commission all that experience by which he is distinguished; and the second Commissioner is Lord Clinton, formerly, as Mr. Trefusis, a Member of the House, who has served Her Majesty as Under Secretary of State for India, and was one of the University Commission. As I am on my legs, perhaps I may be allowed to refer to a personal matter—not personal to myself, but to my noble Friend the Vice President of the Committee of Council on Education (Viscount Sandon). A very precise statement has been made, visiting my noble Friend with what is called the responsibility of having devised and drawn up the Endowed Schools Acts Amendment Bill. There is not the slightest foundation for that statement. The Endowed Schools Bill was a Government measure; it was prepared by the Cabinet; the Cabinet are responsible for it, and they are not disposed to shrink from that responsibility. My noble Friend brought it forward at my desire as the organ of the Government, and on the principle which influences me in the management of the Business of this House—namely, that of giving the rising generation of statesmen every legitimate opportunity of distinguishing themselves.