Page 9, 25th August 1939

25th August 1939
Page 9
Page 9, 25th August 1939 — SCHOOL ADMINISTRATION TO BE "IMPROVED" Catholic Authorities Should Watch Out
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Organisations: Board of Education
People: Kenneth Lindsay

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SCHOOL ADMINISTRATION TO BE "IMPROVED" Catholic Authorities Should Watch Out

Front Our Educational Correspondent IN the course of the debate on the estimates for the Board of Education Mr Kenneth Lindsay, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Board, indicated that the Board will have to take action on the " unit of administration."

At present there are many and various units of administration with a finger in the pie of public

education, all lumped together under the general designation of local education authority.

The proble»t of standardising these units is one uthich must be tackled very carefully and the Catholic voice should be heard when the inquiry is being made because the issue is of vital interest to Catholics.

It is to be feared that with its passion for grandiose schemes the Board may seek to have a few large units of administration and to abolish the smaller unitswhich are not amongst the least efficient.

What interests Catholics is, not so much the size of an administrative unit but the manner in which it carries out Its administrative duties.

During recent months we have had members of the Hierarchy compiaining that they had been misled, bamboozled and cheated in regard to schemes in which Catholic schools were concerned.

DIFFERENCES OF TREATMENT

We have seen wide differences in treatment of Catholic schools by the local authorities; an ostensibly administering Acts of Parliament which give Catholics specific rights in the education of their children within the framework of the public education system.

These variations in administration, under which one authority assists Catholic education while another hampers it—both within the terms of the same laws—argue that what is wrong is not the size and number of local education authorities but their composition and attitude.

Mr Lindsay regretted that in the centenary year of State grants to education more time could not be devoted to debating the subject—and more members present to take part in the debate, He expreased the wish that on some occasion " we might have a full House and ask ourselves; Are we getting value for the money: are we building the sort of system in this country that we really want?"

NEED OF CODIFICATION The answers to those questions would be interesting, but it would also be well to ask: Do the Education Acts need codifying to prevent wide and contradictory variations in the administration amounting in some cases to denial of rights?

Catholic M.P.6 could be well primed to take part in such a debate and Catholic voters to educate the Members to represent their interests mieelintelv.




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