§ 2. Mr. Dudley Smith
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science if he will make a further statement on his policy regarding the future of the direct grant schools in England and Wales.
§ The Secretary of State for Education and Science (Mr. Edward Short)
Not before I have received and considered the second report of the Public Schools Commission.
§ Mr. Dudley Smith
But in view of the excellence of the vast majority of direct grant schools, would the Secretary of State agree that they should be sustained and encouraged rather than penalised? As they are perhaps the best example of democratic and progressive education in this country, would the Minister, as an enlightened man, be their friend rather than their enemy?
§ Sir E. Boyle
Will the right hon. Gentleman acknowledge what does not always seem to be fully recognised, namely, the essential contribution made by these schools, particularly in the North of England, to the total provision, especially for many parents wanting a denominational education for their children?
§ Mr. Short
I agree that these schools make a first rate educational contribution and also make a contribution to the provision of denominational education. At the same time we want these schools to become integrated in the general reorganisation on comprehensive lines. We cannot allow the injustice of selection to continue.