§ MR. WEDGWOOD
I beg to ask the Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department whether he will say how many of the twenty-six persons committed in 1906 to reformatory schools for begging, and of the thirty-nine persons so committed for sleeping out, were of an age to be committed to an industrial school; and whether he will move to add to Clause 96 of the Children Bill a sub-section to prohibit persons under the age of fourteen being committed to reformatory schools for such offences as begging and sleeping out.
§ MR. GLADSTONE
I regret that I cannot accept my hon. friends suggestion in the last paragraph of the Question. Of the young persons sent to reformatories in 1906 for vagrancy, which includes sleeping out, six boys, and of those sent for begging, one boy and one girl, were under fourteen. The remainder were over that age. I have no doubt that the magistrates, when choosing the class of school to which a young person should be sent, that is to say, whether he should mix with children bigger or smaller than himself, take into consideration other things than the actual charge, and a certain amount of discretion must be left to them.