§ 73. Mr. KING
asked the President of the Board of Education the reason why a fee of 3d. a week payable by infants has been sanctioned in Halton Bank Council School, Pendleton; how many infants in this school are now paying school pence; and whether, in view of the increase in the cost of living, he will consider the abolition or reduction of school fees?
§ Mr. REA
The fee of 3d. a week, to which the question refers, is payable only by children in Standard I., taught in the infants' department. Standard I. children were formerly taught in the senior 1022 departments, where a fee of 3d. is payable, and when, for educational reasons, it was decided to group Standard I. with the infants' department the Board, on 13th August, 1914, sanctioned the continuance of the same fee. On 31st October, 1915, the end of the last school year for which the Board have returns, there were no children in the infants' department paying this fee. Two hundred and fifty-three children in the infants' department were paying the fee of 2d. a week which was sanctioned in 1904 for this department. With reference to the suggestion made in the last part of the question, I have no evidence that there is any deficiency of public school accommodation without payment of fees, or that the parents who send their children to feecharging schools desire relief from such fees.