I beg to ask leave to present a petition on behalf of Stockwell College of Education, Bromley. The prayer of the petition is as follows:
To the Honourable the Commons of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland in Parliament assembled. The Humble Petition of the undersigned sheweth.
The House divided: Ayes 58, Noes 89.
That a meeting at Stockwell College of Education, held on Wednesday 23rd February 1977, and attended by teachers from throughout the South East of England, as well as Members of Parliament, prospective parliamentary candidates, Bromley councillors, college staff and former students, unanimously passed the following resolution:
This meeting deplores the proposal of the Secretary of State to end initial training at the Bromley Institute of Higher Education (Stockwell College) and urges her to reconsider the proposal on the following grounds:—
(i) The closure of the initial training unit at Bromley, together with its in-service facilities would cause disadvantage to a large area of South East London and Kent. (ii)At a time of increasing public concern about educational standards, it would be irresponsible to close a college of such high professional standing and with well-established links with schools. (iii)The loss of initial teacher training courses would seriously impair the planned development of the Bromley Institute of Higher Education.
Wherefore your Petitioners pray your Honourable House to acknowledge the wide support for this resolution and actively to resist the said proposal in every possible way.
And your Petitioners, as in duty bound, will ever pray, &c.
The signatures on the petition are those of the Mayor of the London borough of Bromley, the President of the Bromley National Union of Teachers, the President of the South-East Branch of the Association of Headmistresses, the Vicar of Bromley, a professor of mathematics at London University and the Chairman of the Education Committee of the London borough of Bromley.
I hope in a few moments to be able to dilate a little more upon the points made in the petition, but at present I confine myself to saying that although it covers only the names to which I referred it is similar to a petition that was widely circulated throughout the area and attracted 11,500 signatures.
To lie upon the Table.