asked the Minister of Education whether he is aware that the school dental service in North and South Lewisham is so understaffed that each child has to wait a year before receiving attention; and what steps he proposes to take to improve the position.
I am aware that the school dental service in Lewisham is seriously understaffed. I understand, however, that although children may have to wait for periods of up to a year for routine treatment, the local education authority have arranged for children to have emergency treatment at short notice. I hope that the present negotiations on the Dental Whitley Council will result in a satisfactory settlement which will substantially improve the position in the school dental service.
asked the Minister of Education if any decision has yet been reached on the salaries of school dental officers; and if he will make a statement regarding the present condition of school dental service.
No. Negotiations on the establishment of salary scales for dental officers employed by local authorities are still proceeding through the Dental Whitley Council. The latest figures I have show that there were at the beginning of June the equivalent of 734 full-time dental officers employed by local education authorities in the School Dental Service. This compares with figures of 738 at the beginning of this year and of 866 at the beginning of 1949.