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Approved Schools For Girls

Volume 530: debated on Thursday 15 July 1954

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asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what regulations govern punishments in approved schools catering for girls; whether these regulations require records to be kept of punishment involving solitary confinement; and what provision is made for the regular inspection of such records.

Punishments in approved schools for girls are governed by the relevant provisions of the Approved School Rules, 1933. The headmistress is responsible, under the Rules, for recording all serious punishment in the punishment book, which is required to be examined, and signed by the chairman, at each meeting of the school managers, and shown to the school doctor at least once a quarter, and which is examined by inspectors of the Home Office Children's Department during visits. The inspectors also examine quarterly returns from the schools of all punishments other than those of a trivial nature.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department the names of approved schools which take girls of secondary school age; where they are situated; and for how many girls each school caters.

All the 39 approved schools for girls in England and Wales, which are classified according to age on admission, accommodate some girls of secondary school age. Particulars of the schools are contained in the Directory of Remand Homes, Approved Schools and Probation Hostels and Homes in England and Wales, a copy of which I am sending to the hon. Member.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department why detention cells are sanctioned in approved schools catering for girls of secondary school age; in how many schools they are provided; what records are required of their use; and how often these records are inspected, and by whom.

Approved schools for girls generally have a room—sometimes the sick room—in which a hysterical or particularly refractory girl may be isolated for a time, subject to the safeguards provided in the Approved School Rules. At one school accepting specially difficult senior girls there are three detention rooms, the use of which is required to be in accordance with the Rules. With regard to records of use, I would refer the hon. Member to the reply given to his earlier Question.