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Volume 414: debated on Thursday 18 October 1945

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asked the Minister of Education if the provision of text-books for secondary grammar schools will be speeded up, observing that the King's School Macclesfield, has only just received 50 per cent. of the books ordered to be put into use at the beginning of this Michaelmas term.

The speeding up of the production of school text-books is in the hands of the publishers who, however, are themselves dependent upon supplies of labour and materials. So far as the supply of paper is concerned, my right hon. Friend the President of the Board of Trade has already announced that the quota for books, which was raised from 42½ per cent. of the 1939 figure to 50 per cent. at the end of June last, is to be raised again to 65 per cent. as from the 28th of this month. As regards labour, apart from the speed-up in the release of members of the Forces, I understand that high priority is being given to the return of printers to their trade from their other war-time civilian occupations. I have every hope, therefore, that a definite improvement in the supply position of school text-books will become observable before very long.