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Clause 1—(Raising Of Compulsory School Age And Provision Of Maintenance Allowances)

Volume 245: debated on Monday 24 November 1930

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On a point of Order. Through an oversight on my part, an Amendment, which was really a supplementary Amendment to the two Amendments which are on the Paper in my name—in page 1, line 14, to leave out the word "and," and to insert instead thereof, the word "but"; and, in line 19, to leave out from the word "if," to the end of the Sub-section, and to insert instead thereof the words, "this Act had not been passed "—and which would have had the effect of substituting for the words "less than fifteen," in line 18, the words "more than fourteen," was not put down. May I ask whether, in view of the Amendment which was overlooked, you would be willing to reconsider calling my two Amendments, which raise very vital points that are not raised anywhere else in the Bill.

I do not quite understand what the hon. and gallant Member means. As a. matter of fact, I called an Amendment on the last day of the Committee dealing with line 20, and, therefore, these two Amendments are ruled out. In any case they are not selected.

I beg to move, in page 1, line 20, at the end, to insert the words:

"Provided that, in the areas of county councils, the parent shall have the right of interrupting the period of school attendance after the age of fourteen years for the purpose of sowing, setting, cleaning, or harvesting a crop, or for the purpose of receiving instruction in agriculture or handicrafts for a period of not more than sixty school attendance days in any one year, not including holidays, under arrangements to be made by the local education authorities."
This Amendment is of considerable interest to the rural community. The Bill is so drawn that the question of total exemption cannot be dealt with at this time. This is not an Amendment dealing with total exemption. It is divided into two parts, of which the first may be said to deal with the rights and duties of the parents, whereas the second part, which deals with receiving instruction in agriculture or handicrafts, might be described as a matter appertaining to the local authorities. I should like to call the Committee's attention to the experience that other countries have had as to the period for which children are compelled to go to school, because being very largely rural countries—

The hon. and gallant Member must stick to the Amendment, which deals with interruptions for a specific purpose.

I knew there would be a difficulty in keeping in order, but I would like to point out that this is the first Amendment dealing with purely rural matters, and for the first time we have the principle of extending the school age from 14 to 15 at a time when the children are accustomed to learn rural occupations which they will have to adopt afterwards. Without discussing the experience obtained in foreign countries, it is very hard to get the Committee to come to a fair decision. I think I should be in order in saying that, under our system, we do keep our children at school longer in the year than any other country. We keep them about 200 days in the year, compared with Norway's 89 days. We keep them longer than rural countries like Canada and the United States.

If it is the intention of the Government to keep them for the 200 days between 14 and 15 years, I suggest we must, in the interest of the children and of the parents, have a guarantee in the rural areas that the children will have a chance of learning their job. The difficulty of learning their job under the present system is rather intensified by the high standard of attendance that is kept in this country. The average is about 88 per cent. of 200 days, which leaves little time to learn the ordinary rural pursuits. It is rather interesting to note that in the United States, out of 44 States, all keep their children at school for less time than we do. In Norway, the time is very short, so much so that while the older children are getting something like 14 weeks, the younger children only get something like 12 weeks. Of course, in those countries it is not necessary for them to interrupt their vacation, because the total attendance is so short that they have opportunities of learning their rural pursuits.

It has always been an arguable point, as far as the education authorities are concerned, whether the parents have any rights at all. We seek to give them rights during the period between 14 and 15 years. There is considerable apprehension in the minds of those parents, first, as to their children going to school between 14 and 15, and, secondly, as to whether between those years they are going to get any kind of rural education, and, if so, whether it is to be under direct county council arrangements. This Amendment, if it be accepted in whole or in part by the Government, will allow the parent to give instruction himself or to arrange with the farmers or smallholders to give the necessary instruction at suitable times in the year.

There is the second point. In many of the smallholding areas the question of harvesting is an extraordinarily difficult one. Harvesting is not confined to corn crops. There is the harvesting of fruit or any vegetable produce. Naturally, harvesting time extends to any time practically in the summer or even in the late autumn. Therefore, the school holidays, as such, do not necessarily coincide with the time when the children are required to harvest the crops. Some of us have had experience of smallholdings and seen the father and mother worked to death in their attempts to get the harvest in before the weather changes. Of course, it has been impossible for them to draw upon their children when at school. This Amendment also seeks to alter that very serious state of affairs.

There is a third point which I would ask the Government to consider carefully. Between 14 and 15 a child's whole psychology, outlook, and physical wellbeing changes completely, and, perhaps, alters to such an extent that the parents will be able to say what sort of training is most suitable for the child. That, at any rate, gives the parents a chance to go to the local authority and say, "I want my child brought up with this kind of training." It gives them a definite say in what the child's future is to be. This deals with the question of handicrafts, and I venture to say that it is most important to allow the parents to have a say in the child's education between 14 and 15. The right hon. Gentleman himself has been at Harrow, and there are many hon. Members on both sides who have been at Eton, Harrow and other public schools. Their parents have had a definite voice in what the education of their children is to be with a view to fitting them for their future careers. We say that the parents of poor children should also have this say, and as we are mainly interested in rural areas, I have put this Amendment down specially for the purpose. We have not had an Amendment accepted so far. The drafting of Amendments is always difficult to Members of the Opposition, but I hope very much that the principle that I wish to bring forward is clearly stated in this Amendment. That it is controversial none will deny, but, that it has good will behind it, equally both sides will agree. For that reason I am very glad to move this Amendment in the interest of the rural community.

I am not quite sure that the hon. and gallant Member was very happy in his last words, because he suggested that at public schools at the age of 14 we were learning something which had to do with our future careers. As far as I recollect, we were doing Latin verse and Greek prose and translating the speeches of Thucydides. That may have had something to do with what I am doing now. The Amendment proposes to release children up to 14 years for agricultural work for not more than 60 days. The House has decided, by passing the Second Reading of the Bill, that it is right to raise the school age to 15. That does not preclude the possibility of some kind of exceptions and exemptions, if the House thought proper, but I suggest that this particular form of exemption or exception is about the worst that could be designed. I could understand a proposal for allowing exemptions for children in order that they might go into industry to learn the industry in that way, but this is only a proposal for 60 days in the year, which is quite inadequate for properly learning an industry. Moreover, it is undesirable, educationally. To take a child out of school for 60 days in the year would break his educational career to such an extent that in all probability he would not gain any advantage from it. It would also create chaos in the arrangements of the school to have children coming in and out of the classes. I should have thought that, administratively, it was about as bad an arrangement as could be designed.

It is not the case that children in school at the present time are necessarily divorced from the industries which surround their homes. The older children can be taken from the schools under the Board's Regulations to farms, and can see what is going on there. In a good many parts of the country they are so taken in order that they may learn something of the industry. Seasonal occupations are mentioned in the Amendment. The local education authorities can and do frequently arrange for the holidays of the schools to suit the seasonal activities in the countryside. A week is sometimes arranged for closing the schools actually in the middle of the term. That does not break the educational processes of the school, because the whole school has its holiday then. There are such seasonal holidays as the hop-picking holidays in the London schools. In the London schools the holiday is sometimes taken in September instead of August. Therefore, these opportunities for children to have a chance of seasonal occupation do exist. I ask the Committee to resist the Amendment, because I am sure that the majority of the Committee would not want to curtail the number of days of teaching which the children get in the school, as is proposed in the Amendment.

I support the Amendment very heartily in the interests of agriculture and of agriculturists, including the farmer and labourer. The speech of the right hon. Gentleman indicates that he does not fully appreciate the difficulties of the situation. Representing the rural areas and particularly those of us who represent agriculture, we do not like this Bill at all as it applies to those areas. In the event of the Minister not accepting a proposal to delete the rural areas from the Bill, the Amendment is designed to remedy as far as possible the evil which the Bill will do to agriculture and the rural areas. I often think that this House does not fully appreciate the difficulties under which agriculture is being carried on. There is no unemployment in agriculture, but there are seasonal occupations, such as harvest time, potato planting and picking, hop picking, etc., which require extra labour. Since there is no unemployment in agriculture, there is no additional labour to supply the increased seasonal demand. The unemployed from the towns cannot be used in the country because there is no housing accommodation, and we as agriculturists have to look for the increased labour required to carry out the seasonal occupation. There is only one source of supply and that is the wives of the men and the young persons, boys and girls.

Under the present arrangement one week can be allowed in which the school is entirely closed for the seasonal occupations, but that week is absolutely insufficient to meet the demand. Harvest time is carried on for a month, and potato picking goes on for quite a time. Potato planting is also an important seasonal occupation. There is one proper time to plant potatoes, and that is let April. Within a fortnight before and after the 1st April are the time limits within which the potato can be planted. If the farmer had to depend upon his ordinary men he could not carry on the occupation of potato farming for six weeks or two months. He depends upon the employment of women and young persons for that purpose. I appeal to the President of the Board of Education to make this concession to agriculture. I ask him to think of the agricultural labourer, who is an underpaid individual and whose weekly wage is supplemented very considerably by the earnings of young people between 14 and 15 years of age. All we are asking for in the Amendment is that they should be able to do this seasonal occupation, when the wages obtained by these young people may be 4s. or 5s. per head.

I make this appeal also from the point of view of agriculture generally. The right hon. Gentleman is an educationalist, but he is also a member of the Government and as such is responsible for suggestions that are made to help all industry; including agriculture. It is said that agriculture must he made to pay, and millions are to be spent in a way which we suggest will not make agriculture pay, but that is no reason why the President of the Board of Education should come here with a Measure which is going to cost further millions of money, not to make agriculture pay but to make it even more difficult to carry on the processes of agriculture. The agriculturist is a law- abiding citizen; he does not desire to break the law. It is the last straw which breaks the camel's back; and I ask the right hon. Gentleman in the interests of this Bill not to place an impossible burden upon rural areas and upon agriculture. I can tell him that a farmer is not going to see his crops ruined in order to obey the dictation of, shall I say, educational sentimentalists. We want to be law-abiding citizens in the rural areas, and I hope it may be possible for the President of the Board of Education to reconsider this matter and at any rate give agriculture this one demand we are now making in order that we may apply this Bill with as little harm as possible.

On behalf of the agricultural industry I should like to join with my hon. Friends who have spoken from this side of the Committee on this Amendment. One of the most unpopular features about this Bill, which is thoroughly unpopular everywhere and particularly in the country districts, is the compulsion. Compulsion, after all, means ignoring the wishes of the parents, and this Amendment, was put down in order to try and mitigate that objection in some small degree. It is essential that extra labour should be available at seasonal times upon the land; and I make the plea really more on behalf of the children themselves. It is essential that they should acquire a certain dexterity in their work and it is only by beginning young in agricultural work that they can ever acquire the dexterity. My industrial friends divide workers into those who are skilled and unskilled, and they classify as unskilled those who work on the land. If they would only stop and think how these men deal with one operation after another, most diverse in character, at different seasons of the year, they would realise that although they may be classified as unskilled they really are very highly skilled men.

At certain seasons of the year farmers want to put on extra hands and they apply at the Employment Exchange. If they are fortunate enough to get anyone at all they get a man who hopelessly tires after a few hours, or shows such a lack of power to deal with the particular work to which he is put that he is not of much value on the farm. All that arises from the fact that the man has not acquired the dexterity which is necessary. The townsman going out into the country and looking at the various agricultural operations will think perhaps that the worker is going rather slow and that the job is rather easy. But the fact is that the real land worker is getting through an enormous amount of work because he conserves and uses his strength to the best advantage, and the degree of dexterity he shows makes the work look easy. When any townsman or people from the Employment Exchange try their 'prentice hand everything seems to go wrong. We are justified in asking the right hon. Gentleman to consider this Amendment favourably, not only for the reasons I have given but also because the educational facilities which they get at present are quite inadequate for fitting rural children for work upon the land.

During recent years we have heard a great deal about rural bias and agricultural bias. As a matter of fact, we do not get it at all. Rural schools are not equipped to give the sort of training which will help the children to acquire a rural bias. Except in a few isolated cases it has not been done up to the present: and there is no immediate prospect, as far as I can see, of it being done. There were not enough teachers—

The hon. Member is getting far away from the Amendment, which is to allow children under 15 years of age to work on the land.

I was arguing that we are justified in asking for the Amendment because it is essential that children should get an opportunity of working upon the land at an early age, and although the Government sometimes holds out the hope that they will have that training while they are at school they have not in fact secured it up to the present. However, I do not wish to take that point further, because I have already said what I wished to say. But I do urge that until the Government are in a position to carry out this education with a rural and agricultural bias they ought to be generous in the matter of concessions so that the children can gain practical experience.

I suggest to the Committee that they will have found the reasons given by the Minister for rejecting the Amendment neither satisfying nor satisfactory. I took a note of three of them, and, supporting this Amendment, as I do most cordially, as a result of information given to me by my constituents, I cannot help feeling that they are hardly likely to think that the Minister has shown ally particular confidence in the good sense of local education authorities in the country districts. The Minister's first point apparently was that as a result of the Amendment children between 14 and 15 would find themselves out of school for a period of 60 days. The Minister apparently has not appreciated that under the Amendment arrangements have to be made by the local authorities, and that there is nothing in the Amendment which compels children to he out of school for 60 consecutive days.

The Minister's second point I found even more extraordinary than the first. It was that the effect of the Amendment would be that classes in country districts would be upset by the withdrawal of some of the children for harvesting. I do not know whether the right hon. Gentleman expects children who are to benefit by this education to be in classes scattered throughout the small schools in the country. Speaking as one who has some small knowledge of these matters, I should imagine that as a general rule the children between 14 and 15 would be found in the upper classes of the schools. Those are two of the points on which the Minister, in a rather summary way, rejected the Amendment. The right hon. Gentleman further appears to have lost sight of the fact that one of the things proposed by those who support the Amendment is that there shall at least be given an opportunity for some form, of instruction in agricultural subjects. I could not help feeling that. what is being aimed at by the Minister and by those who think with him is neither more nor less than what I describe as book learning, irrespective of whether it is educating a child for certain employments as distinct from others. This is not the proper occasion on which one would be in order in discussing the question of the benefit of vocational training for children between 11 and 15, but, speaking for myself and my constituents, I feel that the Minister has overlooked the fact that in the Amendment it is proposed expressly that part of the 60 days' period should be or may be devoted, under regulations to be made by the local education authority, to instruction in agriculture or handicrafts.

One other point of view is worthy of a few moments' attention. In the towns there is a great danger of children getting into what are called blind-alley employments. That danger does not exist to anything like the same extent in the country districts. If a child has had the advantage, between the ages of 14 and 15, of getting some instruction in agriculture and of watching agricultural pursuits, it is likely to be all the more fitted at 15 years of age to undertake that industry from which it is most likely to derive employment, and is much more likely not to drift into a blind-alley occupation.

10.0 p.m.

I will endeavour to answer the hon. Member who has interrupted with so much courtesy. We are dealing here not only with the farm labourer's child. If the hon. Member would come down to my part of the country he would find there a considerable number of people who are working extremely hard on smallholdings. They might be described by some people as well-to-do farmers, but when. you go into their houses and know the hours they work, and how their wives and children help, it becomes obvious that they are living on an extremely narrow and small margin. These people will be faced with great difficulty if the Bill passes.

It was not my intention to intervene, but, knowing something of agriculture, I could not listen to so much nonsense as has been talked by Conservative Members, without saying something in reply. One would assume that these children in the country were kept in school the whole of the time, whereas for a few days a week they are there only four or five hours a day. What do hon. Members think that the children are doing the rest of the time? [An HON MEMBER: "Travelling to and from school."] I can only say that, as far as the farm with which I am associated is concerned, the children of five or six and upwards, from the moment they are out of school are on the farm with the horses or the implements; they grow up with them and know all about them. To talk about their receiving vocational training in farming from the age of 14 to 15 is absolute nonsense. It is mere pretence and make-believe. It is far better and more honest for hon. Members to say that they object to the Bill on the ground that it will withdraw so much cheap labour from agriculture. That is the plain and straightforward thing to say; that is what hon. Members mean. All this other nonsense that is being talked must be laughed at by people who know anything about agriculture. It makes me cross to think that there are so many Members who are prepared even to exploit children merely for the purpose of getting 60 days' cheap labour.

Precisely the same arguments were produced against raising the school age from 13 to 14 and also against raising it from 12 to 13. The time has gone by when any decent agriculturist would care to have the case put as it has been put by hon. Members above the Gangway. There are enlightened people in agriculture who would scorn to think of depriving children of the advantage of another year's school for the purpose of saving a few shillings a week. I know that a great many of my own friends in agriculture would not think of withdrawing their own children from the public schools between the ages of 14 and 15 in order to help on their farms. Would hon. Members above the Gangway withdraw their children from public schools to help to get in the harvest? All we ask is that children in the country districts shall have a fair and equal chance with other children to make their way in life. There are other grounds upon which one could proceed in this matter but they do not arise on this Amendment. At the proper time, it can be pointed out that burdens are placed on country people by the Bill, but I hope that the Committee will reject with scorn the Amendment now before it.

The two speeches which we have heard in opposition to the Amendment from the President of the Board of Education and from the hon. Member for Ashford (Mr. Kedward) show very little understanding of the reason for this Amendment. To take first the speech of the Minister, I own that I have some doubts as to the practicability of the latter part of the Amendment but I support the Amendment because the first part of it seems to deal with a matter of very great importance which, I think, received too cursory treatment at the hands of the right hon. Gentleman. The right hon. Gentleman's speech seemed to show that he did not realise the importance of this issue to the country districts. May I point out to the Committee, in the first place, that other countries where the school age has been raised above 14, understand its importance, because one and all have arranged, either by a system of exemption or by a system of less school attendance during the summer months, for the absence of children for the very purposes mentioned in the Amendment. The right hon. Gentleman supplied me the other day with a Memorandum, giving the conditions of school attendance in all countries other than this, and also in the provinces of the Dominions where the school age has been raised above 14.

References have already been made to certain information contained in that Memorandum. Let me supplement what has been said by a reference to the case of Switzerland. Throughout the cantons of Switzerland, while there is no system of exemption such as obtains in Canada and South Africa, there is the very system advocated in the Amendment of the withdrawal of children from school at certain periods. In one canton we find that during the summer months the hours of school attendance range from 15 to 21 per week while there is a standard 27½ hours for all children above the infant classes. In another canton the hours range from 12 to 27 a week. In another canton there are only half-days in school during the summer for certain children. In other cantons only 10 or 12 or even six hours attendance in the week is required during the summer months. That is a deliberate system of lessening the amount of school attendance required during the summer in order that the children may help in agriculture.

In Norway, as we have been reminded, the younger children in the rural areas need not attend more than 12 weeks in the year, and the older children need not attend more than 14 weeks in the year. And, in Norway, a rural local authority has not power to require attendance for more than 21 weeks of the year—while there are schools in this country where the required attendance is not less than 40 hours. It is not only in the countries where the school age has been raised above 14 that the importance of this question of allowing lesser school attendance in summer is recognised. We have only to look at the case of our greatest agricultural competitor, Denmark, to see how that principle has been clearly recognised in Denmark's education system. It has been recognised right from the beginning of the Danish national education system in the eighteenth century. It was laid down there that farmers must not be deprived more than was necessary of the help to which they were accustomed from young people. Therefore we find that the minimum number of hours of attendance is not more than 18 exclusive of hours spent in gymnastics. We find that in some cases the children may go to school for three hours a, day for six days a week, which means that they devote the other hours of the day to helping in the work of the farm. In other cases, they may attend for six hours every other day, or the older children may attend four days a week in the winter, and not more than two days a week in the summer.

I mention these details because I think that comparatively few people in this country realise the extent to which this part-time system operates for the express purpose of allowing the children to help in agricultural work. We are accustomed to hear a great deal about the excellence of Denmark as an agricultural country, but I do not think we realise how much the part-time system in education is involved, or the extent to which the need of agriculture for some help from the older children is recognised. It is said, also, that because the children have not so much school attendance in the summer—I am speaking of the older children—that they return to steady attendance in November very keen and anxious to make up for lost time. There is the actual fact that Denmark, our keenest rural competitor, has a definite system of part-time in order that the older children shall be able to give some time to helping in farm work. We do not suggest in this Amendment anything so radical as a change to the systems of the countries which I have mentioned. We do not suggest a school attendance limited to two or three or four days in the week. We merely ask the President of the Board of Trade to recognise that in rural areas there are seasonal occupations which depend largely on climate. We know how very uncertain our climate is, and the cruel anxiety which it often causes to those engaged in agriculture. Because of that uncertainty a sudden need may arise for considerable additional labour, an urgent need may arise on one afternoon, and, if help is not forthcoming, the opportunity of sowing a crop or of weeding a crop may be lost for ever.

I would remind hon. Members opposite who may not be as well acquainted with conditions in our rural areas as I, and many of those who support this Amendment, happen to be, that in spite of all the unemployment, it is still often very difficult to get the necessary adult labour suddenly in the country. Instances are frequent of farmers applying at Employment Exchanges where there are unemployed men and finding it extremely difficult to get the labour that they need. I do not want to see children employed in this way on adult labour. I would like to see adult labour coming forward for all these harvesting operations. I want to see the men employed, but I saw that if you cannot get the men, and if you cannot get enough women, it is better to take some of the older children away from school for a few days than to lose a crop. The loss of a crop is too big a price to pay.

I shall never forget, when I was chairman of a school management committee under a Scottish education authority a few years ago, how I was taken aback when a parent, who had come to see me on some other business, a man whom I knew well and with whom I bad always been on the most friendly terms, suddenly turned on me and accused me of having nearly been the cause of his losing the whole of his potato crop. I said, "What do you mean? What have I to do with your potato crop?" He said, "Because the school management committee did not allow the children to come and help." I tried to placate him by reminding him that no request had been put forward to that effect; but that incident impressed itself very much on me as showing how the whole crop in a neighbourhood might depend on getting a sufficient supply of labour at the right moment, and how very much education might be prejudiced in the eyes of parents in the country unless local education authorities are ready reasonably to grant the needs of agriculture in this way.

I would point out to the hon. Member for Ashford (Mr. Kedward) that what he said about children helping to look after the horses is not the point. It is a question of the sudden demand for labour in a seasonal occupation. It is not enough just to get a child in for an hour or two at the end of the school day. They want a child to have two or three days just when the crop is being gathered.

I was dealing with the point of vocational instruction, and I say that they have that from the earliest time, because most of their time is spent on the farm.

I am sorry if I misunderstood the hon. Member, but I do not think he really paid any attention to the first part of this Amendment.

I was dealing directly with a speech that was made on one of the benches above the Gangway, and that is why I intervened.

I am interested to think that the hon. Gentleman, with his great knowledge of rural areas, has not said anything against the main purpose of this Amendment.

How can it be exploiting child labour when it is a case of boys and girls going out with their fathers and mothers to pick berries for a day or two? I should have been extremely glad if anybody had exploited me in that way. It would have been a very welcome change from the work I had to do, and I think most hon. Members would have been very glad to have been exploited in the same way. It is a very important point in this matter that this is outdoor work and, therefore, healthy work. We have to keep that clearly in mind. An hon. Lady, one of the medical Members in this House, spoke the other day about the possibility of children being overworked, and we have to keep that in view, but these occupations are healthy work in the open and work of a light character.

Finally, an hon. Member behind me referred to a smallholder and how important the labour of his older children might be to him. I need hardly remind the right hon. Member opposite that his colleague, the Minister of Agriculture, is by way of largely increasing the number of smallholders in this country. Does it not seem rather a mockery for him to increase the number of smallholders in this country at the very moment when the right hon. Gentleman the President of the Board of Education will be depriving them of the opportunity of having their older children to help them?

If this Bill passes without any allowance being made for the withdrawal of children for seasonal occupations, it will undoubtedly add to the difficulties which smallholders already have to face. Therefore, if the Government are sincere in their desire to put more smallholders on the land, as I believe they are, and if they do not want to place difficulties in the way of their making good, I hope that the right hon. Gentleman will really look into this question. I do not say that the form of this Amendment is the last word on the subject, but I ask the right hon. Gentleman to realise that this is a very real and important question in the rural areas, and, if he will not make any provision either in this way or through exemptions for meeting the needs of the rural areas, he will greatly increase the unpopularity which education already suffers in too many rural areas, and will further increase the gloom that hangs over those areas which are in any way responsible for agricultural production.

I find it difficult to understand why hon. Members opposite seek to remind us all the time that this is an Education Bill, and yet move an Amendment designed to look after the interests of one particular trade or industry. There are two parts to this Amendment. The first is designed to enable children to be exempted from school for not more than 60 days per year in order that they may be able, to attend to certain seasonal occupations like sowing, reaping, cleaning, harvesting and so on. The second part of the Amendment deals with instruction in agriculture or handicraft. It has been urged in the discussion that my right hon. Friend the President of the Board is forgetful of the needs of agriculture, especially from the point of: view of the fact that it is in a special sense a seasonal occupation. As a teacher at school I was acquainted with one form of this seasonal employment, namely, hop-picking. I lived in a mining area, and children left my class about September and went into Herefordshire to follow hop-picking. They happened to go at the beginning of the educational year, and were away for about a month, or five or six weeks. It created absolute chaos in my class for weeks and months on end, for the obvious reason that some children were at school from the beginning of the term, and others were not. [An HON. MEMBER: "They were all ages!"] They were not all ages. They were children in my class, and therefore approximately of the same age. I submit it is a fair point to make, that on educational grounds it is an injustice to the children to have six weeks' leeway to make up in comparison with their school mates who have been at school continuously from the beginning of the term. I hope the Committee will think it worth while. to take that experience of mine into account.

It is suggested that the children should be allowed 60 days in the year. Already they get something like 12 weeks' holiday a year. Sixty days, reckoning five days to a week, will give them another 12 weeks. That is to say, we are to guarantee for these children, if their parents so desire it, nearly six months' absence from school every year. [interruption.] Absence during a year. I accept the correction. That would reduce the educational value of that year to those children almost to nothing. It would ruin the whole educational efforts of the teacher for that year. In the course of this discussion we have heard arguments which have a very old and familiar ring. I do not want to speak unkindly, but it does require a little patience to listen to some of them. The hon. Member for Leominster (Sir E. Shepperson) said there was so little unemployment hi agriculture that the only resources on which farmers could fall back in these exceptional cases were the wives and children of agricultural labourers. To advance the argument that agriculture in this country cannot live except by resort to child labour is, in these enlightened days, the severest condemnation of the state of our agriculture.

There is another argument, at least 100 years old, that we must allow these children to engage in agricultural work in order to supplement the family income. That was the argument used in the days when attempts were made to prevent cotton operatives starting work at too early an age in the mill. And as if that were not enough we have had the hon. Member for Stamford (Mr. Smith-Carington) advancing an older argument still, the argument about dexterity. It used to be argued in the case of children in Lancashire who were going to work in the cotton mills that if they stayed too long at school their fingers would lose all suppleness and they would no longer be dexterous. Today we are told that if we prevent children going into the fields at an early age they will lose the dexterity of their fingers. Really, it is almost impossible to be patient with an argument of that sort. The hon. Member for Bridgwater (Mr. Groom-Johnson) argued that the 60 days would not necessarily be taken consecutively. That is so; but from the educational point of view that is a worse argument still. If we put the whole holiday into one stretch, without any break, it would be far less deleterious to a child's educational interest than to have a break of seven days, then four days, then five days, and so on, which is hopeless from an educational point of view. The same argument is advanced on the ground that it is necessary to give these children instruction by way of practical acquaintance with agricultural conditions and agricultural work. The hon. Member for Ashford (Mr. Kedward) dealt with that point quite adequately. After all these children, from their very earliest days, are on the farm with their parents, and they are in close and constant touch with these things, and all that they can be taught on the land.

Therefore it seems to me, as far as practical acquaintance is concerned, they get as much education naturally as they are likely to have if they were taken for 60 days, or whatever the term may be, into the fields. [interruption.] I would like to make this observation. I beg hon. Members to believe that it is not intended that these children should be in any way given a sort of feeling that work on the land is infra dig, to them. Far from it, indeed I hope to see in the rural schools of the future far more adequate attention given to practical instruction so that the children may equip themselves more adequately for the vocations of the countryside. It seems to me that, in any case, the school is the natural place for these children, just as it is for the boys and girls of industrial parents. I do not want to introduce a class bias into this business, but it is fair to make a reference to what was challenged by the hon. Member for Ashford, and to what was reasserted by the Noble Lady the Member for Kinross (Duchess of Atholl), that it is far better that these children should be taken away from the school so as to save the crop. Very good. What is the answer to that argument? Do hon. Members opposite ever take their children out of school? [interruption.] Well, you do not. It is no use the children—

On a point of Order, Mr. Speaker, may I ask if it is not the usual custom that when the representative of the Government replies to an Amendment he should give way to the Mover of the Amendment if he wishes to put a question.

In that ease the representative of the Government would be giving way nearly all the time.

The Noble Lady the Member for Kinross said in the course of her speech that it is far better that these children should be taken from the school into the fields rather than allow the crops to be wasted.

I accept that proposition, and I simply reply: "Do hon. Gentlemen opposite propose to take their children away from school to save the crops?"

We are told that it depends where they are at school, and no doubt "distance lends enchantment to the view." The point I want to make is that there is creeping through the whole of this discussion a half suggestion that the children of agricultural workers are destined by nature to do this job

"To plough and sow,
To reap and mow,
To be a farmer's boy."
That is the idea, and we challenge absolutely that concept. I said on the Second Reading, and I repeat here, that I hope that this party will never accept the proposition that the children of the workers, because they are the children of the workers, are destined to do this particular work. If this challenge be accepted, very well. But, if they are not so destined, we must give to them, so far as we can, as full and complete an educational opportunity in the countryside as we give to the children in the towns. That full and complete opportunity can only be given by rejecting this Amendment, and applying the same law to the child in the country as we apply to the child in the town. Therefore, I hope that the Amendment will be rejected.

I regret that the debate has taken on the tone that it has, especially during the last few minutes. There has been far too much use of the words "work," "employment," and "exploiting," and it did not start on this side of the House. It started in the first speech of the President of the Board of Education, when he spoke of children being released from school for agricultural work. The word "work" does not occur in this Amendment. The Amendment says:

"for the purpose of receiving instruction in agriculture"—
[HON. MEMERS: "Read on!"]—the next word is "or." [interruption.] If the hon. Member does not know what agriculture is, I shall be very pleased to give him what information I can, but not at this moment. Reference has been made to the needs of the industry, but the need of work for the industry is not the strong point of this Amendment. It is the need of the industry if it is to give the industry skilled workers later on.

An almost deliberate attempt has been made to create prejudice by suggesting that the sole object of those who are supporting this Amendment is to obtain cheap labour. What is education after all? [HON. MEMBERS: "Sowing!"] In agriculture it is sowing wheat, but education, really, is training to fit a person for after life. That is the only true education that there is, and the ground for this Amendment is that the training necessary for a very great deal of agricultural life cannot be given within four walls. It is all very well to say that children should remain at school, but there is a certain type of education which cannot be given within four walls; they must get out into the fields to receive it. The Minister and the Parliamentary Secretary have both said that 60 days is a tremendous time for which to take children away from school. The Minister, in the first place, said that it was not long enough to receive practical education for an agricultural occupation, but he probably did not understand that the object is to give training in seasonal occupations, and seasonal occupations do not last that length of time. The right hon. Gentleman said also that it is the custom already to take children out and give them rural instruction. That is an admission of the principle which underlies this Amendment. [interruption.] Those who know about agricultural education know that teachers take their children, as much as they possibly can, outside into the rural areas to see actually what is being done. They also have their school gardens, where they not only tell them what should he done but see that they do it. That is an admission of the principle of the strength of this Amendment.

I have it on the authority of some of the best teachers that the children who are being taught theory only get very weary of it. If they can once get out into the fields and practically apply some of their theory, they go back to school, not tired of it but anxious to get some more theory which they can put into work later on. That is all we are asking for, to give them an opportunity of going into the fields, and to increase their aptitude and appetite for the education that they will receive later on. It was said by one speaker that education was very unpopular in rural areas. It is in one sense, and again it is not. Education is not unpopular, but the type of education that is given is unpopular. If you give them the right type of education, there is no one more anxious that their children shall receive education than the people in the rural areas. I support the Amendment most heartily because I believe, not that it is in the interest of the farmers but that it is in the true interest of the children themselves.

I wonder if it would be possible to invite the Committee to come back to the real merits of the Amendment, because, listening to some of the previous speeches, I think we may be liable to be carried away by emotional statements which have very little relevance to the Amendment. I cannot help feeling that some of those who have put their names to this Amendment are really living in days that have long gone by. When they seek to emphasise the importance of getting the assistance of children of the age of 14 on the work of sowing, setting, clearing and harvesting crops, they are forgetting the developments in agricultural machinery in the last few years which, fortunately, have largely made unnecessary the employment of the cheap labour and the juvenile labour that was necessary in days gone by. Then they talk about receiving instruction in agriculture. If this Bill passes and is put into operation, under the schemes of local education authorities instruction in agriculture in rural areas will be one of the things to be secured.

But apart from that, think of the administrative difficulties which the incorporation of an Amendment of this character will involve. It says the parent shall have the right of interrupting the period of education. Is the parent to be the judge of whether that is right or not? It is true that in the last line the Amendment says:
"under arrangements to be made by the local education authorities."
It does not say the local education authority is to be the judge. In fact, this Amendment as it stands is one of the most futile things that I have ever seen on the Order Paper. No Government Department could ever give any meaning to it. It says that the parent shall have the right of taking the child away for a certain number of days in the course of the year. It does not say who is to decide whether the parent is right in taking the child away. It does not say who is to be the judge of whether the parent is right or wrong in taking the child away. The Amendment, administratively, is an absolutely impossible one. My hon. Friend the hon. Member for Ashford (Mr. Kedward) made a speech which, I consider, represented the opinion that is felt in a very large number of the counties and rural areas of the country. He explained the difficulties—and he knows them as well as any Members of this House—which will confront local education authorities in rural areas in putting the Act into operation, and, at the same time, he pointed out that this Amendment is really a thing to which the Committee should not give serious consideration for more than a few minutes. All he met with was an insult from one hon. Member above the Gangway who made an offensive remark.

If hon. Members above the Gangway are really opposed to the principle of raising the school age say so, and have the courage to say so, but for heaven's sake do not pretend at one moment that you are in favour of raising the school age and at the same time try and sidetrack the question by Amendments of this character. The thing is administratively impossible, and from the, educational point of view it is hopeless, and I cannot imagine that anybody who has thought out the matter could have put his name to an Amendment of this character. If hon. Members want to oppose the Bill, do so in every genuine way, but to put down a thing like this, which educationally is hopeless and administratively impossible, is, I think, playing with the time of the Committee.

It is evident from the Liberal Benches that we a-re not going to get arguments, but only abuse.

Does the Noble Lord adhere to what the hon. Member behind me said? [interruption.]

Is there no protection in this House for a Member who puts his views from another Member who comes to his place and deliberately insults him before his colleagues? He used an offensive term to me that was slung across the Gangway. Is there no protection?

If there was an offensive term, the hon. Member should have called my attention to it at the moment, and not now.

From the speeches we have heard from the Liberal benches, hon. Members have confined themselves exclusively to saying that this is a dishonest Amendment, and would not be approved by anyone who knew anything about the country or did not, wish to wreck the Bill. To come to the arguments which the hon. Member for the University of Wales (Mr. Evans) thinks are good enough against this Amendment, he says, in the first place, why should you release children for sowing and that kind of thing in these enlightened days when there is machinery, especially on smallholdings? Then he proceeds to say that we are providing this instruction in the schools themselves. What, instruction in. the use of agricultural machinery?

If the hon. Member will do me the courtesy of devoting his attention to what I am saying for a moment, I want to point out to him, that if machinery is becoming of such universal use in the countryside, the agricultural education which he says is to be given in the schools will be of very little use. There is precious little mechanical instruction given in rural schools.

I would ask the Noble Lord to try to deal fairly with my speech. The Amendment does two things. The first part of it refers to children who are kept at home

"for the purpose of sowing, setting, cleaning or harvesting a crop."

The second part deals with receiving instruction in agriculture. That is the part to which I was referring.

The hon. Member is very anxious to lay stress on the mechanisation of agriculture when it suits his object, and very anxious to deny the mechanisation of agriculture when it does not suit his object. The hon. Member went on to say that this was a purely wrecking Amendment, that it was totally impossible to carry it out, and that it was administratively impossible. How can you give a parent the right to keep his children away from school? he asks. Has the hon. Member never heard of the "reasonable excuse" which a parent can now plead? What is there in this Amendment to prevent this being made, as is intended, a "reasonable excuse" on the part of the parent? The hon. Member says it would create confusion and would be administratively impossible. Next we come to the hon. Members opposite and to the Parliamentary Secretary, who, in a most provocative speech, said that this was administratively impossible. I want to ask the President of the Board of Education where we stand, because he said, in opening the debate, that we were entirely in error if we supposed that these seasonal occupations were not already provided for since the local authorities already arranged school terms to suit hop-picking and so on. The Parliamentary Secretary, however, said that, in the experience of every school teacher, it was a most terrible thing to allow children to go hop-picking, and he was cheered by the hon. Member for South Shields (Mr. Ede), who represents an education authority which is notorious for having in the past thrown difficulties in the way of children wishing to go hop-picking.

The Noble Lord must be fair to me, because he knows that not very far from where he lives the schools have their holidays specially arranged so that the children can go hop-picking in one of the finest hop-growing districts. We do, however, strictly enforce the employment of children by-laws when children are taken away—I do not like to use the word "exploited"—to be used at any odd time by farmer who would sooner take on a couple of children than one man.

That indicates the danger of the argument that things are administratively difficult, if not impossible. It is an argument which is used by administrators of all parties and quite as much by Tories as by Socialists. I only mention the Surrey County Council, because I have a strong recollection of a dispute some years ago when there was some difficulty about arranging the school holidays. I want to know, as between the President of the Board of Education and the Parliamentary Secretary, if we are to understand that these arrangements, which are now made, will not be made by any proper progressive local authority, and that any local authority can put as many obstacles as possible in the way of letting children off for this work.

It is all very well for hon. Members below the Gangway on this side and hon. Members opposite to talk about it Being administratively impossible and educationally undesirable. This Committee has been given a good deal of facts from every agricultural country in Europe and America, and especially every country where there has been any successful policy of smallholdings. I want to drive home the point that was put by

Division No. 25.]


[10.58 p.m.

Adamson, Rt, Hon. W. (Fife, West)Bentham, Dr. EthelCape, Thomas
Adamson, W. M. (Staff., Cannock)Bevan, Aneurin (Ebbw Vale)Carter, W. (St. Pancras, S.W.)
Addison, Rt. Hon. Dr. ChristopherBirkett, W. NormanCharleton, H. C.
Altchison, Rt. Hon. Craigle M.Blindell, JamesChater, Daniel
Alexander, Rt. Hon. A. V. (Hillsbro')Bondfield, Rt. Hon. MargaretChurch, Major A. G.
Alpass, J. H.Bowen, J. W.Clarke, J. S.
Ammon, Charles GeorgeBowerman, Rt. Hon. Charles W.Close, W. S.
Angell, NormanBroad, Francis AlfredClynes, Rt. Hon. John H.
Arnott, JohnBromfield, WilliamCocks, Frederick Seymour
Aske, Sir RobertBromley, J.Compton, Joseph
Attlee, Clement RichardBrothers, M.Cove, William G.
Ayles, WalterBrown, C. W. E. (Notts, Mansfield)Cowan, D. M.
Baker, John (Wolverhampton, Bliston)Brown, Rt. Hon. I. (South Ayrshire)Daggar, George
Baldwin, Oliver (Dudley)Brown, W. J. (Wolverhampton, West)Dallas, George
Barnes, Alfred JohnBurgess, F. G.Dalton, Hugh
Batey, JosephBurgin, Dr. E. L.Denman, Hon. R. D.
Bellamy, AlbertBuxton, C. R. (Yorks. W. R. Elland)Duncan, Charles
Bennett. William (Battersea, South)Caine, Derwent Hall-Ede, James Chuter
Benson, G.Cameron, A. G.Edmunds, J. E.

my Noble Friend the Member for Perth and Kinross (Duchess of Atholl), that you are starting out on a smallholdings policy, and you propose to start out on that policy by rejecting out of hand and with scorn the experience of every country which has made a. success of smallholdings. Anyone on this side who suggests, for instance, that the great economic strength of the smallholder is that he does not have to employ other labour but depends upon the work of his family, and that therefore you have to have a considerable degree of flexibility in the administration of your school attendance laws, is laughed to scorn. Anyone who says that on this side of the House is immediately laughed down by hon. Members like the hon. Member for Claycross (Mr. Duncan), who is well known for his interruptions. That sort of hon. Member is always attacking us on this side because, although they talk about smallholdings and agricultural policy, they are really quite determined to rule out of consideration altogether any measures which have been found necessary in countries which are, as this country unfortunately has ceased to be, great agricultural countries providing work alone for hundreds of thousands of smallholders. The treatment of this Amendment shows that whatever else this Government may be able to do it will never be able to create an agricultural policy.

rose in his place, and claimed to move, "That the Question be now put."

Question put, "That the Question be now put."

The Committee divided: Ayes, 258; Noes, 134.

Edwards. E. (Morpeth)Lawther, W. (Barnard Castle)Rosbotham, D. S. T.
Egan, W. H.Leach, W.Rothschild, J. de
Elmley, ViscountLees, J.Salter, Dr. Alfred
England, Colonel A.Lewis, T. (Southampton)Sanders, W. S.
Evans, Capt. Ernest (Welsh Univer-)Lindley, Fred W.Sawyer. G F
Foot, IsaacLloyd, C. EllisScott, James
Freeman, PeterLogan, David GilbertScrymgeour, E.
Gardner, B. W. (West Mars, Upton)Longbottom, A. W.Scurr, John
George. Major G. Lloyd (Pembroke)Longden, F.Sexton, James
George, Megan Lloyd (Anglesea)Lowth, ThomasShakespeare, Geoffrey H.
Gibbins, JosephLynn, WilliamShaw, Rt. Hon. Thomas (Preston)
Gibson, H. M. (Lancs. Mossley)MacDonald, Rt. Hon. J. R. (Seaham)Shepherd, Arthur Lewis
Gillett, George M.MacDonald, Malcolm (Bassetlaw)Sherwood, G. H.
Glassey, A. E.McElwee, A.Shield, George William
Gessling, A. G.McEntee, V. L.Shiels, Dr. Drummond
Gould, F.McKinley, A.Shillaker, J. F.
Gray, MlinerMacLaren, AndrewShinwell, E.
Greenwood, Rt. Hon. A. (Colne)Maclean, Sir Donald (Cornwall, N.)Short, Alfred (Wednesbury)
Grenfell, D. R. (Glamorgan)Maclean, Nell (Glasgow, Govan)Simmons, C. J.
Griffith, F. Kingsley (Middiesbro' W.)MacNeill-Weir, L.Simon, E. D. (Manch'ter, Withington)
Griffiths, T. (Monmouth, Pontypool)McShane, John JamesSinclair. Sir A. (Caithness)
Groves, Thomas E.Malone, C. L'Estrange (N'thampton)Sinkinson, George
Grundy, Thomas W.Mansfield, W.Smith, Frank (Nuneaton)
Hall, F. (York. W. R., Normanton)Marcus, M.Smith, Rennie (Penistone)
Hall G. H. Marthyr Tydvil)Marley, J.Smith, Tom (Pontefract)
Hall, Capt. W. G. (Portsmouth, C.)Marshall, FredSmith, W. R. (Norwich)
Hamilton, Mary Agnes (Blackburn)Mathers, GeorgeSnell, Harry
Hardle, George D.Matters, L. W.Snowden, Thomas (Accrington)
Harris, Percy A.Messer. FredSerensor, R.
Hartshorn, Rt. Hon. VernonMiddleton, G.Stamford, Thomas W.
Hastings, Dr. SomervilleMills, J. E.Stewart, J. (St. Rollox)
Haycock. A. W.Morgan, Dr. H. B.Strachey, E. J. St. Loe
Hayday, ArthurMorley, RalphStrauss, G. R.
Hayes, John HenryMorrison, Herbert (Hackney, South)Taylor, R. A. (Lincoln)
Henderson, Rt. Hon. A. (Burnley)Morrison, Robert C. (Tottenham, N)Taylor, W. B. (Norfolk, S.W.)
Henderson, Arthur, Junr. (Cardiff, S.)Mort, D. L.Thomas, Rt. Hon. J. H. (Derby)
Henderson, Thomas (Glasgow)Moses, J. J. H.Thurtle, Ernest
Henderson, W. W. (Middx., Enfield)Mosley, Lady C. (Stoke-on-Trent)Tilett, Ben
Herriotts, J.Muggeridge. H. T.Toole, Joseph
Hirst, G. H. (York W. R. Wentworth)Nathan, Major H. L.Tout, W. J.
Hirst, W. (Bradford, South)Naylor, T. E.Townend, A. E.
Hoffman, P. C.Newman, Sir R. H. S. D. L. (Exeter)Trevelyan, Rt. Hon. Sir Charles
Hollins, A.Noel Baker, P. J.Vaughan, D. J.
Hopkin, DanielNoel-Buxton, Baroness (Norfolk, N.)Viant, S. P.
Hore-Bellsha, LeslieOldfleld, J. R.Walkden, A. G.
Horrabin, J. F.Oliver, George Harold (Ilkeston)Walker, J.
Hudson, James H. (Huddersfield)Oliver, P. M. (Man., Blackley)Wallace, H. W.
Isaacs, GeorgeOwen, Major G. (Carnarvon)Wellhead, Richard C.
Jenkins. W. (Glamorgan, Heath)Paling, WilfridWatkins, F. C.
John, William (Rhondda, West)Palmer, E. T.Watson, W. M. (Dunfermline)
Johnston, ThomasPerry, S. F.Wellock, Wilfred
Jones, Henry Haydn (Merioneth)Pethick-Lawrence, F. W.Welsh, James (Paisley)
Jones, Rt. Hon. Lelf (Camborne)Phillips, Or. MarionWest, F. R.
Jones, Morgan (Caerphilly)Picton-Turbervilt, EdithWestwood, Joseph
Jones, T. I. Mardy (Pontypridd)Pole, Major D. G.White, H. G.
Jowitt, Rt. Hon. F. W.Potts, John S.Whiteley, Wilfrid (Birm., Ladywood)
Jowitt Sir W. A. (Preston)Price, M. P.Whiteley, William (Blaydon)
Kedward, R. M. (Kent, Ashford)Pybus, Percy JohnWilkinson, Ellen C.
Kelly, W. T.Quibell, D. J. K.Williams, Dr. J. H. (Llanelly)
Kennedy, ThomasRamsay. T. B. WilsonWilliams, T. (York, Don Valley)
Lambert, Rt. Hon. George (S. Molton)Rathbone, EleanorWilson, C. H. (Sheffield, Attercliffe)
Lang, GordonHaynes, W. R.Wilson, R. J. (Jarrow)
Lansbury, Rt. Hon. GeorgeRichards, R.Winterton, G. E.(Leicester,Loughb'gh)
Lathan, G.Richardson, R. (Houghton-le-Spring)Wright, W. (Rutherglen)
Law, A. (Rossendale)Riley, Ben (Dewsbury)Young, R. S. (Islington, North)
Lawrence, SusanRiley, F. F. (Stockton-on-Tees)
Lawrie, Hugh Hartley (Stalybridge)Ritson, J.TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—
Lawson, John JamesRomeril, H. G.Mr. Allen Parkinson and Mr.
Charles Edwards.


Albery, Irving JamesBourne, Captain Robert CroftCayzer, Maj.Sir Herbt, R. (Prtsmth,S.)
Allen, Sir J. Sandeman (Liverp'l., W.)Braithwaite, Major A. N.Cazalet, Captain Victor A.
Astor, Maj. Hon. John J.(Kent,Dover)Brass, Captain Sir WilliamChamberlain, Rt.Hn.Sir J.A.(Birm.,W.)
Atholl, Duchess ofBriscoe, Richard GeorgeChurchill, Rt. Hon. Winston Spencer
Baldwin, Rt. Hon. Stanley (Bewdley)Brown, Col. D. C. (N'th'I'd., Hexham)Colfax, Major William Philip
Ballour, Captain H. H. (I. of Thanet)Brown, Brig.-Gan.H.C.(Berks, Newb'y)Colville, Major D. J.
Bainiel, LordBullock, Captain MalcolmCourthope, Colonel Sir G. L.
Beamish, Rear-Admiral T. P. H.Butler, R. A.Cranborne, Viscount
Beaumont, M. W.Cadogan, Major Hon. EdwardCrichton-Stuart. Lord C.
Betterton, Sir Henry B.Campbell, E. T.Croft, Brigadier-General Sir H.
Birchall, Major Sir John DearmanCarver, Major W. H.Crookshank, Capt. H. C.
Bird, Ernest RoyCastle Stewart, Earl ofCroom-Johnson, R. P.
Boothby, R. J. G.Cautley, Sir Henry S.Culverwell, C. T. (Bristol, West)

Davies, Maj. Geo. F. (Somerset,Yeovll)Law, Sir Alfred (Derby, High Peak)Sassoon, Rt. Hon. Sir Philip A. G. D.
Davison, Sir W. H. (Kensington, S.)Lewis, Oswald (Colchester)Savery, S. S.
Dawson, Sir PhilipLlewellin, Major J. J.Shepperson, Sir Ernest Whittoms
Duckworth, G. A. V.Macdonald, Capt. P. D. (I. of W.)Simms, Major-General J.
Eden, Captain AnthonyMacquisten, F. A.Sinclair, Col. T. (Queen's U., Belfst)
Edmondson, Major A. J.Makins, Brigadier-General E.Skelton, A. N.
Erskine, Lord (Somerset,Weston-s-M.)Margesson, Captain H. D.Smith. R. W.(Aberd'n & Kinc'dine, C.)
Everard, W. LindsayMarjorlbanks, EdwardSmith-Caringten, Neville W.
Falle, Sir Bertram G.Merriman, Sir F. BoydSomerville, A. A. (Windsor)
Fielden, E. B.Monsell, Eyres, Com. Rt. Hon. Sir B.Somerville, D. G. (Willesden, East)
Forestler-Walker, Sir L.Moore, Sir Newton J. (Richmond)Southby, Commander A. R. J.
Fremantle, Lieut.-Colonel Francis E.Moore. Lieut.-Colonel T. C. R. (Ayr)Spender-Clay, Colonel H
Ganzonl, Sir JohnMorrison, W. S. (Glos., Cirencester)Stanley, Lord (Fylde)
Gilmour, Lt.-Col. At. Hon. Sir JohnMuirhead, A. J.Sueter, Rear-Admiral M. F.
Gower, Sir RobertNicholson, O. (Westminster)Thomson, Sir F.
Greene, W. P. CrawfordOrmsby-Gore, Rt. Hon. WilliamTinne, J. A.
Gretton, Colonel Rt. Hon. JohnPeake, Capt, OsbertTitchfleid, Major the Marquees of
Gunston, Captain D. W.Penny, Sir GeorgeTodd, Capt. A. J.
Hacking, Rt. Hon. Douglas H.Percy, Lord Eustace (Hastings)Train, J.
Hannon, Patrick Joseph HenryPeto, Sir Basil E. (Deven, Barnstaple)Tryon, Rt. Hon. George Clement
Hartington, Marquess ofPower, Sir John CecilVaughan-Morgan, Sir Kenyon
Harvey, Major S. E. (Devon. Totnes)Ramsbotham, H.Ward, Lieut.-Col. Sir A. Lambert
Henderson, Capt. R.R.(Oxf'd, Henley)Remer, John R.Wardlaw-Milne, J. S.
Heneage, Lieut.-Colonel Arthur P.Richardson, Sir P. W. (Sur'y, Ch't'sy)Waterhouse, Captain Charles,
Hennessy, Major Sir G. R. J.Roberts, Sir Samuel (Ecclesall)Wells, Sydney R.
Herbert, Sir Dennis (Hertford)Rodd, Rt. Hon. Sir James RennallWindsor-Clive, Lieut.-Colonel George
Hills, Major Rt. Hon. John WallerRoss, Major Ronald D.Withers, Sir John James
Hudson, Capt. A. U. M. (Hackney, N.)Ruggles-Brise, Lieut.-Colonel E. A.Womersley, W. J.
Hurd, Percy A.Russell, Alexander West (Tynemouth)Young, Rt. Hon. Sir Hilton
Iveagh, Countess ofSalmon, Major I.
Jones. Sir G. W. H. (Stoke New'gton)Samuel, A. M. (Surrey, Farnham)TELLERS FOR THE NOES.—
Lamb, Sir J. Q.Samuel, Samuel (W'dsworth, Putney)Captain Wallace and Sir Victor
Lane Fox, Col. Rt. Mon. George R.Sandeman, Sir N Stewart Warrender.

Question put accordingly, "That those words be there inserted."

Division No. 26]


[11.9 p.m.

Albery, Irving JamesEdmondson, Major A. J.Newton, Sir D. G. C. (Cambridge)
Allen, Sir J. Sandeman (Liverp'l., W.)England, Colonel A.Nicholson, O. (Westminster)
Astor, Maj. Hn. John J.(Kent, Dover)Erskine, Lord (Somerset,Weton-s.-M.)Ormsby-Gore, Rt. Hon. William
Atholl, Duchess ofEverard, W. LindsayPeake, Capt, Osbert
Baldwin, Rt. Hon. Stanley (Bewdley)Falle, Sir Bertram G.Percy, Lord Eustace (Hastings)
Balfour, Captain H. H. (I. of Thanet)Flelden, E. B.Pete, Sir Basil E. (Devon, Barnstaple)
Balniel, LordForestier-Walker, Sir L.Power, Sir John Cecil
Beamish, Rear-Admiral T. P. H.Fremantle, Lieut.-Colonel Francis E.Ramsbotham, H.
Beaumont, M. W.Ganzonl, Sir JohnRemer, John R.
Betterton, Sir Henry B.Gilmour, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir JohnRichardson, Sir P. W. (Sur'y, Ch't'sy)
Birchall, Major Sir John DearmanGower, Sir RobertRoberts, Sir Samuel (Ecclesall)
Bird, Ernest RoyGreene, W. P. CrawfordRodd, Rt. Hon. Sir James Rennell
Boothby, R. J. G.Gretton, Colonel Rt. Hon. JohnRoss, Major Ronald D.
Bourne, Captain Robert CroftGunston, Captain D. W.Ruggles-Brise, Lieut.-Colonel E. A.
Braithwaite, Major A. N.Hacking, Rt. Hon. Douglas H.Russell, Alexander West (Tynemouth)
Brass, Captain Sir WilliamHannon. Patrick Joseph HenrySalmon, Major I.
Briscoe, Richard GeorgeHartington, Marquess ofSamuel, A. M. (Surrey, Farnham)
Brown, Col. D. C. (N'th'l d'., Hexham)Harvey, Major S. E. (Devon, Totnes)Samuel, Samuel (W'dsworth, Putney)
Brown, Brig.-Gen.H.C.(Berks,Newb'y)Henderson, Capt. R. R (Oxf'd,Henley)Sandeman, Sir N. Stewart
Bullock, Captain MalcolmHeneage, Lieut.-Colonel Arthur P.Sassoon, Rt. Hon. Sir Philip A. G. D.
Butler, R. A.Hennessy, Major Sir G. R. J.Savery, S. S.
Cadogan, Major Hon. EdwardHerbert, Sir Dennis (Hertford)Shepperson, Sir Ernest Whittome
Campbell, E. Ttills, Major Rt. Hon. John WallerSimms, Major-General J.
Carver, Major W. H.Hudson, Capt. A. U. M. (Hackney,N.)Sinclair, Col. T. (Queen's U,, Belfast)
Castle Stewart, Earl ofHurd, Percy A.Skelton, A. N.
Cautley, Sir Henry SIveagh, Countess ofSmith, R. W.(Aberd'n & kinc'dine, C.)
Cayzer. Maj.Sir Herbt. R.(Prtsmth,S.)Jones, Sir G. W. H. (Stoke New'gton)Smith-Carington, Neville W.
Cazalet, Captain Victor A.Lamb, Sir J. Q.Somerville, A. A. (Windsor)
Chamberlain,Rt.Hn.Sir J.A.(Birm.,W.)Lambert, At. Hon. George (S. Molton)Somerville, D. G. (Willesden, East)
Churchill, Rt. Hon. Winston SpencerLane Fox, Col. Rt. Hon. George R.Southby, Commander A. R. J.
Cohen, Major J. BrunLaw, Sir Alfred (Derby, High Peak)Spander-Clay, Colonel H.
Colfax, Major William PhilipLewis, Oswald (Colchester)Stanley, Lord (Fylde)
Colville, Major D. J.Lleweilln, Major J. J.Sueter, Rear-Admiral M. F.
Courthope, Colonel Sir G. L.Macdonald, Capt. P. D. (I. of W.)Thomson, Sir F.
Crichton-Stuart, Lord C.Macquisten, F. A.Tinne, J. A.
Croft, Brigadier-General Sir H.Makins, Brigadier-General E.Titchfield, Major the Marquess of
Crookshank, Capt. H. C.Margesson, Captain H. D.Todd, Capt. A. J.
Croom-Johnson, R. P.Marjoribanks, EdwardTrain, J.
Culverwell, C. T. (Bristol, West)Merriman, Sir F. BoydTryon, Rt. Hon. George Clement
Davies, Maj. Geo. F.(Somerset,Yeovll)Monsell, Eyres, Com. Rt. Hen Sir B.Vaughan-Morgan, Sir Kenyon
Davison, Sir W. H. (Kensington. S.)Moore. Sir Newton J. (Richmond)Ward, Lieut.-Col. Sir A. Lambert
Dawson, Sir PhilipMoore, Lieut.-Colonel T. C. R. (Ayr)Wardlaw-Milne, J. S.
Duckworth, G. A. V.Morrison, W. S. (Glos., Cirencester)Warrender, Sir Victor
Eden, Captain AnthonyMuirhead, A. J.Waterhouse, Captain Charles

The Committee divided: Ayes, 137; Noes, 256.

Wells, Sydney R.Womersley, W. J.TELLERS FOR THE A YES.—
Windsor-Clive. Lieut.-Colonel GeorgeYoung, Rt. Hon. Sir HiltonHir George Penny and Captain
Withers, Sir John James Wallace.


Adamson, Rt. Hon. W. (Fife, West)Grundy, Thomas W.Morrison, Robert C. (Tottenham, N.)
Adamson, W. M. (Staff., Cannock)Hall, F. (York, W.R., Normanton)Mort, D. L.
Addison, Rt. Hon. Dr. ChristopherHall, G, H. (Merthyr Tydvil)Moses, J. J. H.
Aitchison, Rt. Hon. Craigle M.Hall, Capt. W. G. (Portsmouth, C.)Mosley, Lady C. (Stoke-on-Trent)
Alexander, Rt. Hon. A. V. (Hillsbro')Hamilton, Mary Agnes (Blackburn)Muggeridge, H. T.
Alpass, J. H.Hardie, George D.Nathan, Major H. L.
Ammon, Charles GeorgeHarris, Percy A.Naylor, T. E.
Angell, NormanHartshorn, Rt. Hon. VernonNewman, Sir R. H. S. D. L. (Exeter)
Arnott, JohnHastings, Dr. SomervilleNoel Baker, P. J.
Asks, Sir RobertHaycock, A. W.Oldfield, J. R.
Attlee, Clement RichardHayday, ArthurOliver, George Harold (Ilkeston)
Ayles, WalterHayes, John HenryOliver, P. M. (Man., Blackley)
Baker, John (Wolverhampton, Bilston)Henderson, Right Hon. A. (Burnley)Owen, Major G. (Carnarvon)
Baldwin, Oliver (Dudley)Henderson, Arthur, Junr. (Cardiff, S.)Paling, Wilfrid
Barnes, Alfred JohnHenderson, Thomas (Glasgow)Palmer, E. T.
Batey, JosephHenderson, W. W. (Middx., Enfield)Perry, S. F.
Bellamy, AlbertHerriotts, J.Pethick-Lawrence, F. W.
Bennett, William (Battersea, South)Hirst, G. H. (York W. R. Wentworth)Phillips, Dr. Marion
Benson, G.Hirst, W. (Bradford, South)Picton-Turbervill, Edith
Bentham. Dr. EthelHoffman, P. C.Pole, Major D. G.
Bevan, Aneurin (Ebbw Vale)Hollins, A.Potts, John S
Birkett, W. NormanHopkin, DanielPrice, M. P.
Blindell, JamesHors-Belisha, LesliePybus, Percy John
Bondfield, Rt. Hon. MargaretHorrabin, J. FQuibell, D. J. K.
Bowen, J. W.Hudson, James H. (Huddersfield)Ramsay, T. B. Wilson
Bowerman, Rt. Hon. Charles W.Isaacs, GeorgeRathbone, Eleanor
Broad, Francis AlfredJenkins, W. (Glamorgan, Neath)Haynes, W. R.
Bromfield, WilliamJohn, William (Rhondda, West)Richards, R.
Bromley, J.Johnston, ThomasRichardson, R. (Houghton-le-Spring)
Brothers, M.Jones, Henry Haydn (Merioneth)Riley, Ben (Dewsbury)
Brown, C. W. E. (Notts. Mansfield)Jones, Rt. Hon. Leif (Camborne)Riley, F. F. (Stockton-on-Toes)
Brown, Rt. Hon. J. (South Ayrshire)Jones, Morgan (Caerphilly)Ritson, J.
Brown, W. J. (Wolverhampton, West)Jones, T. I. Mardy (Pontypridd)Romeril, H. G.
Burgess, F. G.Jowett, Rt. Hon. F. W.Rosbotham, D. S. T.
Burgin, Dr. E. L.Jowitt, Sir W. A. (Preston)Rothschild, J. de
Buxton, C. R. (Yorks. W. R. Elland)Kedward, R, M. (Kent, Ashford)Salter, Dr. Alfred
Caine, Derwent Hall-Kelly, W. T.Sanders, W. S.
Cameron, A. G.Kennedy, ThomasSawyer, G. F.
Cape, ThomasLang, GordonScott, James
Carter. W. (St. Pancras, S.W.)Lansbury, Rt. Hon. GeorgeScrymgeour, E.
Charleton, H. C.Lathan, G.Scurr, John
Chater, DanielLaw, A. (Rossendale)Sexton, James
Church, Major A. G.Lawrence, SusanShakespeare, Geoffrey H
Clarke, J. S.Lawrie, Hugh Hartley (Stalybridge)Shaw, Rt. Hon. Thomas (Preston)
Cluse, W. S.Lawson, John JamesShepherd, Arthur Lewis
Clynes. Rt. Hon. John R.Lawther, W. (Barnard Castle)Sherwood, G. H.
Cocks, Frederick SeymourLeach, W.Shield, George William
Compton, JosephLees, J.Shiels, Dr. Drummond
Cove, William G.Lewis, T. (Southampton)Shillaker, J. F.
Cowan, D. M.Lindley, Fred W.Shinwell, E.
Daggar, GeorgeLloyd, C. EllisShort, Alfred (Wednesbury)
Dallas, GeorgeLogan, David GilbertSimmons, C. J.
Dalton, HughLongbottom, A. W.Simon, E. D. (Manch'ter, Withington)
Denman, Hon. R. D.Longden, F.Sinclair, Sir A. (Caithness)
Duncan, CharlesLowth, ThomasSinkinson, George
Ede, James ChuterLunn, WilliamSmith, Frank (Nuneaton)
Edmunds, J. E.MacDonald, Rt. Hon. J. R. (Seaham)Smith, Rennie (Penistone)
Edwards. E. (Morpeth)MacDonald, Malcolm (Bassetlaw)Smith, Tom (Pontefract)
Egan, W. H.McElwee, A.Smith, W. R. (Norwich)
Elmley, ViscountMcEntee, V. L.Snell, Harry
Evans, Capt. Ernest (Welsh Univer-)McKinley, A.Snowden, Thomas (Accrington)
Foot, IsaacMacLaren, AndrewSorensen, R.
Freeman, PeterMaclean, Sir Donald (Cornwall, N.)Stamford, Thomas W.
Gardner, B. W. (West Ham, Upton)Maclean, Nell (Glasgow, Govan)Stewart, J. (St. Rollox)
George, Major G. Lloyd (Pembroke)MacNeill-Weir, L.Strachey, E. J. St. Loe
George, Megan Lloyd (Anglesea)McShane, John JamesStrauss, G. R.
Gibbins, JosephMalone, C. L'Estrange (N'thampton)Taylor, R. A. (Lincoln)
Gibson, H. M. (Lancs. Moseley)Mansfield, W.Taylor, W. B. (Norfolk, S.W.)
Gill, T. H.Marcus, M.Thomas, Rt. Hon. J. H. (Derby)
Gillett, George M.Marley, J.Thurtle, Ernest
Glassey, A. E.Marshall, FredTillett, Ben
Gossling, A. G.Slathers, GeorgeToole, Joseph
Gould, F.Matters, L. W.Tout, W. J.
Gray, MilnerMesser, FredTownend, A. E.
Greenwood, Rt. Hon. A. (Colne).Middleton, G.Trevelyan, Rt. Hon. Sir Charles
Grenfell, D. R. (Glamorgan)Mills, J. E.Vaughan, D. J.
Griffith, F. Kingsley (Middlesbro' W.)Morgan, Dr. H. B.Viant, S. P.
Griffiths, T. (Monmouth, Pontypool)Morley, RalphWalkden, A. G.
Groves, Thomas E.Morrison, Herbert (Hackney, South)Walker, J.

Wallace, H. W.White, H. G.Winterton, G. E.(Leicester, Loughb'gh)
Wallhead, Richard C.Whiteley, Wilfrid (Birm., Ladywood)Wright, W. (Ruthergien)
Watkins, F. C.Whiteley, William (Blaydon)Young, R. S. (Islington, North)
Watson, W. M. (Dunfermline)Wilkinson, Ellen C.
Wellock, WilfredWilliams, Dr. J. H. (Llanelly)TELLERS FOR THE NOES
Welsh. James (Paisley)Williams, T. (York, Don Valley)Mr. Allen Parkinson and Mr. Charles Edwards.
West, F. R.Wilson, C. H. (Sheffield, Altercliffe)
Westwood, JosephWilson, R. J. (Jarrow)

It being after Eleven, of the Clock, the CHAIRMAN left the Chair to make his Report to the House.

Committee report Progress; to sit again To-morrow.

The remaining Orders were read, and postponed.