asked the President of the Board of Education whether he had been officially informed that the money due for salaries to teachers in the school at Mortomley had yet been paid by the local education authority.
No, sir, not officially, but I am happy to tell the noble Lord that I have communicated to the managers of the schools that the local education authority have agreed to pay.
May I ask whether if the money is not paid by the end of the session the right hon. Gentleman will apply the Defaulting Authorities Act?
I cannot give an undertaking of that sort. I must first know the reason why the money was not paid. I imagined that the only reason why the money has not yet been paid is that the officials were away on holidays.
said that considering the very unsatisfactory reply of the right hon. Gentleman, he had no alternative but to ask leave to move the adjournment of the House for the purpose of discussing the failure of the Government to secure payment of the salaries.
pointed out that no attempt had been made to establish that he had any authority in the matter.
said he had asked the Question repeatedly for more than a fortnight, and the salaries still remained unpaid. He maintained that the right hon. Gentleman had the power to enforce payment.
I know there is some confusion on this point. This case is not like the Merioneth case. The school in question had not been recognised, but we have now recognised it, and informed the local education authority of that fact, so that the salaries will now become payable.
I really am not in a position to judge between the two hon. Members on this point. I think I am bound to take the assurance which has been given by the right hon. Gentleman that the county council have assured him that they are prepared to pay and are about to pay.
said that he wanted payment to be enforced.
I do not think even if the noble Lord was successful and the House was to adjourn that would enforce payment.
Can the right hon. Gentleman name a date by which the education authority will pay?
said he had written to the managers of the school informing them that he was satisfied with the condition of the playground, and that he was, therefore, prepared to put the school on the grant list, and the local education authority had informed him that they would raise no objection, but would give rate-aid to the school. No more than that could be done.
Cannot the right hon. Gentleman tell the education authority that they must pay at once?
said he had no doubt the clerks were away on holidays, but the money would be paid.
Someone must be there to transact business.
The money will be paid in the ordinary way.
Are the whole of the education authority and all the clerks away on holidays?
said he was informed that this money had been due for four months.