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Education, Scotland

Volume 526: debated on Tuesday 6 April 1954

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Technical College Grants (Apprentices)


asked the Secretary of State for Scotland what financial considerations he applies which prevent an apprentice in the county of Peebles from qualifying for a grant to attend the Heriot Watt or any other technical college for the purpose of improving his trade knowledge.

Education authorities are empowered to give grants towards fees, travelling expenses and incidental costs of attendance at technical colleges, but an apprentice may not qualify for grant if he, or a relative on whom he is dependent, is able to meet the whole cost.

Are we to take it that there are stringent rules or a means test applicable to these regulations?

The hon. Member will know that the bursary regulations previously applied and now applied, necessarily take account of the parents' means; that is an old-established custom.

Nursery Schools, Glasgow


asked the Secretary of State for Scotland the annual cost of nursery schools in Glasgow; and what is the amount recovered in charges.

It is estimated that the total cost for the year ending on 15th May, 1954, will be about £123,000; of this sum, about £7,700 will be recovered in charges for meals.

Is the hon. Gentleman quite satisfied that this is a satisfactory sum to be contributed by the parents?

Education in these schools is like education in other schools; it is a free service, and we have no means of recovering the cost, except for meals.


asked the Secretary of State for Scotland the average daily attendance of children at nursery schools in Glasgow during March; what is the number of nursery schools; and what is the total staff employed in this service.

The average daily attendance during March was 1,175; the number of schools is 41; and the total staff employed 243.

Teachers (Status)


asked the Secretary of State for Scotland whether, in view of the increasing anxiety among parents and teachers concerning overcrowded classes, the lowering of teaching standards, and the decline in the status of the teaching profession, he will seek to make an early broadcast explaining present and future prospects in the educational field.

As my right hon. Friend has already shown in a statement to the Press and in answer to Parliamentary Questions, he does not accept the allegations contained in this Question. No doubt opportunities will present themselves in the future for broadcasts or other statements relating to educational progress in Scotland.

How can the Minister possibly be so much out of touch with Scottish opinion? Does he not realise that, if the personality of the Secretary of State for Scotland were allowed to ooze over the ether, the effect upon the morale of the teachers would be absolutely devastating?