same terms as to Protestants, and that the teach- is no system of instruction which, in its ers have been directed not to press on the Roman original aim, goes more directly to the Catholic children any instruction to which their true purpose of education than that of the priests or their parents may object, as interfering with the principles of their own religion. They meet, accordingly, in the Assembly schools, in most cases, without jealousy or reluctance, and have every branch of literary instruction in the same classes with the Protestants, in the same schoolbooks, and without distinction between the two denominations. At the same time the Committee have specially directed that the religious instruction given in the schools, whatever may be

the number of Roman Catholics in attendance,

shall be always accommodated strictly and exclusively to the principles of the Established Church."

parochial schools of Scotland. If this be so, why seek to subvert it. Now, an authority to which hon. gentlemen opposite, professing the most liberal opinions, will be disposed to defer, thus defines the true purpose of education-Milton says, "the end of learning is to repair the ruins of God aright, and out of that knowledge to our first parents by regaining to know love Him, to imitate Him, to be like йim, as we may the nearest by possessing our But you further object to leaving the parish souls of true virtue; which, being united to schools as they are, because it would inter- the heavenly grace of faith, makes up the fere with the uniformity which you consi- highest perfection." Now, the distinder essential to a national system. I con- guishing characteristic of our parochial fess I am at a loss to perceive the advan- school education is, according to its first tages of this nominal uniformity, I think design and true practice, that it is religiit would prove opposed and adverse to real ous. That such is its character was acuniformity-the uniformity of object-and knowledged by a high authority on the seeing that we do not object to your trying Liberal side of the Scotch Church-one another system as regards your new schools whose name and memory will command in the towns, I should rather expect that respect even among the adherents of the the difference in their constitution would Free Church, and persons professing the give rise to a healthy rivalry by which both most liberal political opinions, the late Dr. might be stimulated into increased activity. Andrew Thomson, who, in drawing up a But after all, what is this uniformity; constitution for the local day-school instiwhat does it mean? Uniformity means tution in the parish of St. George's, in centralisation, centralisation means Govern- Edinburgh, founds it expressly on this, ment interference, Government interfer- "that the object of the school shall be in ence, especially under Governments of a conformity to the spirit and intention of certain character, means jobbing, a mis- our national establishment of parochial management, failure-the weakening of schools, to give the children of the parish the healthful influence of local self-govern- a religious education;" and that he justly ment-the drying up of the sources of in-appreciated that spirit and intention is dividual generosity and individual Christian proved by reference to the first book of benevolence. The price is too high for an discipline in setting forth the necessity of article of such questionable utility. Hav- schools. The work, as hon. Members ing now touched on what seem to me the know, is attributed to John Knox. It remain objections urged by the right hon. fers to the purpose of God that His and learned Lord against the parisli schools, Church should be taught by Him, and not will the House allow me to tell them what by Angels ;" "and because men are born this mischievous parochial system is, against ignorant of all godliness, and God has which the right hon. and learned Lord thinks ceased to illuminate them miraculously, it his duty to direct his exterminating at- suddenly changing them as He did the tack, and I will observe, first, that while Apostles and others; therefore it is most we assert that the whole of these schools necessary to be most careful for the virtuare in a state of high efficiency, of which ous education and godly upbringing of the I shall by-and-bye offer large proof, nei- youth of this realm;" and, in pursuance ther the right hon. and learned Lord, nor of these views, the parish school was atany of those Members who support his tached as an appendage and necessary attacks on them, have cited one single in- part of the parish church, and placed in stance of either failure or inefficiency close and intimate connection with it. which can be fairly assigned to the system Now, so long as that connexion exists, we of their institution. But we must look for have a guarantee for the maintenance in a moment to what the main objects of our parochial schools of the union of reeducation really are, or ought to be,-and ligion with secular education. In your I have no hesitation in asserting that there Bill we look in vain for any such guaran


tee, you pay us off in your preamble with your education to mere instruction in readcertain general expressions of respect for ing and writing, and what are called the the principle involved in this union, but higher branches of knowledge, if you negwe all know what is the value of a pre-lect to impress on the mind of the child amble unsupported by a single enacting the sense and habitual influence of responclause in your Bill-you keep the word of sibility to a tribunal higher than any human promise to the ear, and break it to the authority, and the habit of referring every sense. I cited to the House last year an uestion of conduct to a law which prejuinstance of something much more likely to dice and favour cannot change. To procommand the respect of a late posterity duce this impression, to form this habit, is than the words of any preamble-the last the primary object of our parochial schools advice offered to his countrymen by Wash--and, till very lately, they were allowed ington, in which he exhorts them to main- to have so far succeeded as to merit the tain the religious character of their schools, general approval of all classes and denomibut which, in the absence of positive en- nations amongst us. Has any such change actment, has failed to prevent their pub- taken place in them as to justify the sublic schools slipping down, to use the ap- version of that part of their constitution propriate expression of my right hon. which, by connecting them with the EstaFriend the Member for Oxfordshire (Mr. blished Church, gives us a practical assurHenley), into a purely secular system; and ance that this object shall not be lost sight if you shrink from encountering the diffi- of? Quite the reverse. The living and culties which you suppose to exist in ap- advancing character of these schools may plying this principle in its full extent to be proved by the increased degree in which your new schools, if you are sincere in the they enjoy the public confidence. I will respect you profess for it, you should give the House some facts connected with rather desire to maintain it where it al- the schools in some northern counties, with ready exists, and keep your parish schools which I am familiar, which will bear me intact as examples to guide your new ones out in this. I take them from the excelin the right path-as buoys to indicate lent report of Mr. Menzies, Secretary to the channel in which they may steer with the Dick Bequest-you do not deny the effisafety. Now, our parochial schools em- cient state of the schools subject to its brace these two objects, as was stated by operation-but I can cite others as efficient Mr. Menzies-religious culture and culture in other counties; besides, there is nothing for life for its duties and pursuits. They in the operation or management of that cannot be separated without depriving the bequest which might not easily be applied most important part of education for life to all schools. I take 124 parochial schools for life extending to an existence beyond this in the counties of Aberdeen, Banff, and world, but indissolubly connected with it- Moray-a large and fair induction. There moral habit and duty, of the authority and are now in each of the parochial schools of influence of their Divine origin. The right those counties, on an average, thirty more hon. and learned Lord and others have pupils than there were in 1833. The enurged on us the fearful amount of crime, tire number of schools, parochial and priwhich they attribute, with some truth, I vate, in these counties, excluding burghs, doubt not, to ignorance-though the Aus- which in 1833 was 528, has risen during trian statistics of the right hon. Member the same period to 731, an increase equal for Oxfordshire might warrant the conclu- to ten new schools in each year. In 1833 sion that false knowledge was quite as only one in nine of the population attended prolific of it as brute ignorance-and they school; in 1853 the number was one in urge the paramount obligation which lies six. The average number of scholars aton us no longer to delay the consideration tending each parochial school in 1832 was of this question of the education of the eighty-five; in 1852 it was 115, being people. They tell us that the very exist- thirty more than in 1832. The total numence of our social system is endangered, as ber enrolled shows an increase since 1832 reposing on a volcano which may, at any of 5,197, a much larger increase than can moment, burst forth, and leave nothing be assigned to the increase of the popubut desolation and ruin behind it; and, lation; the increase in the number of undoubtedly, we have sufficient proof of the pupils being as 308 to 146 of the populainsufficiency of mere penal laws, and of the tion, and this simultaneously with a large dread of punishment to deter from crime. increase in the means of education geneBut you will fail of your object if you limit rally, there being of schools, parochial and

non-parochial, excluding the burghs, which I have described does not call for, or jushave no parochial schools, 203 more than tify legislative interference, such as is proin 1833. The increasing appreciation of posed in this Bill with the parochial schools. the parochial schools is further shown by It proves that they are in a high state of the increase in the amount of fees received efficiency, and in the enjoyment of the by the teachers. In 1833, the fees re- public favour and approval-but if there ceived by the parochial schools amounted be one circumstance more than another to to 1,8671.; in 1842 they had risen to which this state of things is to be attri2,8671.; in 1852, they were 3,110.; the buted, it is to the connection existing beaverage amount of fees being now to each tween them and the Church, and to the teacher 251. 7s. 4d., or 91. 9s. 10d. more superintendence and watchful interest of than in 1833; and this although the num- the parochial clergy and Presbyteries of ber of pupils taught gratis in 123 parochial the Church arising out of that connection. schools is 3,406, or one in five of the whole scholars enrolled, and four times the number taught gratuitously in 1833. My right hon. Friend the Member for Droitwich expressed an opinion unfavourable to the payment of any fees by the scholars, but he will scarcely quarrel with the cost to each pupil for an education including, besides reading and writing, arithmetic, mathematics, Greek, Latin, French (in many cases), geography, history, and drawing. The cost of fees to each of 31,745 pupils is 7s. 4d. for all branches of education. The cost of each, including the salaries and expenses of buildings to the heritors, is only 12s. 10d. Then, with regard to the general state of education in these counties, there are returns for forty-nine parishes, in which they show that there was no person above six years of age unable to read-in upwards of thirty parishes, none unable, also, to write. In the parish in which I reside the number attending school during the past year was one in four of the population. Then, as regards the emoluments of the teachers, it is satisfactory to know that they are such as to hold out sufficient inducement to persons well qualified for the office. In the last twenty years they have increased from 551. 12s. 6d. to 1017. while the accommodation afforded by the proprietors, which then was limited to three rooms, now averages five rooms. These salaries are doubtless augmented to the average extent of some 201. by the payments from the Dick Bequest, but in some of the southern counties to which it does not extend, and with one of which I am connected, the emoluments are even higher; Larbert, in Stirlingshire, has for

The right hon. and learned Lord may tell me that he leaves the superintendence practically with the parish minister; then, why interfere with the Presbyteries, supposing the parish minister neglects his duty-a possible case, among so large a number-Quis custodiet ipsos custodes—we require the Presbytery to keep him up to his work. But, in regard to the connection with the Church generally, Mr. Menzies tells us, in the Report already referred to (page 133), "That the trustees have always attached a high value to the connection between the parish schools and the Church," and the Report points out how fitting it is that institutions designed to train and mould the young should be under the guidance of those whose office is conversant with man's highest interests, where it connects the teacher with what his neighbourhood possesses of learning, intelligence, and respectability. He says further, that, so far from showing any jealousy of lay interference, the Reports of the Presbyteries are regularly transmitted to the Trustees of the Bequest, and that this communication has proved in the highest degree beneficial in directing attention to points of general interest and importance affecting the welfare of the schools; and he adds that in time of need the minister is the prop of the school, and that the records of the Trustees exhibit many instances of schools being taught for weeks-in one case for months-by the minister personally, when there was a vacancy, and difficulty in finding a qualified teacher. Why, then, should you endeavour to terminate a connection acting thus beneficially? Experience has shown that the sectarian

two years averaged 1241. In two neigh-spirit, of which you express so much dread, bouring parishes the teachers have ave- has really no action in these schools. The raged 150l. There are doubtless many principle involved in it is approved by all cases of retired parishes where the salaries the Episcopalian community, as may be should be increased, but we have offered inferred from the unanimous declaration of ourselves to increase them. Now, what I the Scotch bishops. The proprietors, by contend is, that the state of things which whom the schools are paid, protest against

the change you propose. The maintenance | cussed when it was before the House, but of the present system in its integrity will the form in which they were about to legisnot interfere with your extending the late was extremely objectionable, and he means of education where extension may was the more inclined to oppose it because be required. The separation of the parish he saw from a notice that had been given, schools from the Church is protested what was intended to be adopted in the against by all the ministers and congrega- Council of New South Wales. In 1850 a tions of the Church, as well as by almost Bill was passed, giving to the Legislative all the present schoolmasters, because it Councils of the Australian Colonies power would involve the virtual withdrawal of all to frame new constitutions for themselves. guarantee for the religious character of Under that statute the Legislative Council education in Scotland, while it dealt a of Victoria had passed a Bill, the preamble heavy blow and great discouragement to of which recited that power had been given the Church itself. I implore the House to it to do so by the statute of 1850, but consent to the instruction which I now beg then the Bills passed by the Legislative leave to move, Council overleaped and transcended the powers contained in the Act of 1850, presuming to repeal numerous Imperial statutes, and also to invest the Council with a great many powers which it did not now possess, and which nothing but an Act of Parliament could confer upon it, while it likewise in many respects altered the relation of the Legislative Council to the Imperial Legislature. This Bill the Legislative Council of Victoria had no more authority to pass than had any small knot of persons assembling together in a room in the colony and calling themselves a public meeting. The Legislative Council, however, took it upon itself to pass this Bill, reciting the limited powers given to it by Parliament; and then, being conscious that it had exceeded those powers, it sent home, together with this Act, a short Act, which it suggested that Parliament should pass, in order to legalise what it had done, Now, it would be most inconvenient, as well as not very creditable, for the British Parliament to accede to such a request, while it would also be most inexpedient as an example to the other colonies. Certain limited powers having been granted to the Legislative Council, it ought to have confined itself strictly within its authority; and whatever was wanted beyond those constitutional powers should take the form of a gift and concession from the Imperial Parliament to the colony, instead of the colony taking it in a shape that was illegal and void, and then sending its Act home, accompanied by another short Act, asking Parliament to confirm and ratify its irregularity. If this Motion had been for a Bill to assent to the Act of the Legislative Council of Victoria, the course pursued by the Government would have been sufficiently objectionable; but it was more objectionable still, because it was not merely a Bill to enable Her Majesty to grant Her

Amendment proposed, to leave out from the word "That" to the end of the Question, in order to add the words "it be an Instruction to the Committee to divide the Bill into two Bills; the one relating to the Parochial Schools, the other to the New Schools contemplated by the Bill," instead thereof,

Question proposed, "That the words proposed to be left out stand part of the Question.'


THE EARL OF DALKEITH moved the adjournment of the debate.

THE LORD ADVOCATE said, at that late hour (it being half-past twelve o'clock), he would not oppose the Motion, as there seemed no likelihood of ending the discussion that night.

MR. COWAN said, he hoped the Government would allow the debate to be continued on Monday next, which was agreed to.

Debate adjourned till Monday next,


LORD JOHN RUSSELL moved for leave to bring in a Bill to enable Her Majesty to assent to a Bill, as amended, of the Legislature of Victoria, "to establish a constitution in and for the colony of Victoria."

MR. LOWE said, he was very sorry to be obliged to trouble the House at that late hour with two or three observations, but the great importance of the question, and the novelty, as well as the very undesirable nature of the course about to be adopted, must be his excuse for doing so. The noble Lord gave notice of a Bill to enable Her Majesty to assent to an Act of the Legislative Council of Victoria as that Act had been amended. This was a very extraordinary Motion. He would say nothing now of the Bill, which could be dis

consent, but really a Bill to enable the
Legislative Council to pass that which it
had set up, though utterly void of law.
The House was therefore asked, in fact,
to give validity to a law which the Legisla
tive Council had no authority to make,
and which Her Majesty had no power to
agree to. The matter, however, did not
stop there.
The Legislative Council of
Victoria, having passed an Act which it
had no power to pass, and then sent
home to be made valid, the noble Lord
(Lord John Russell) did not approve of
certain portions of this Colonial Act, and
thought it not advisable to adopt them;
and, therefore, he had amended the Colo-
nial Act by striking out those objectionable
portions of it and inserting others in their
place; and then he asked Parliament to
pass a Bill to enable Her Majesty to as-
sent, not to the Act which the Colonial
Legislature had adopted, but another one
which the noble Lord had devised. An
Act when thus altered was no longer the
same measure, but must be regarded as an
entirely new one, and therefore the Act
now proposed to be legalised could not be
considered as the Bill that was passed by
the Legislative Council of Victoria. As
the noble Lord had amended this Act, he
presumed that the House of Commons could
also amend it. If not, the simple effect
would be to deprive the House of the power
of amending an Act of its own, because
the Act would be as much the Act of that
House as if it had never passed the Legis-
lature of Victoria, that Legislature never
having had power to pass it. They were,
therefore, involving themselves in a mass
of inextricable confusion, difficulty, and
anomaly, and they were placing the House
of Commons in a situation in which it ought
not to be placed—namely, in the situation
of submitting to the dictation of a colonial
assembly as to what laws it should pass.
He objected, therefore, entirely to the
course which the noble Lord proposed to
pursue, but he would suggest two courses,
either of which would be free from any
objection in principle. The noble Lord
might stand upon the Act of 1850, and
say to the Legislative Council of Victoria,
"You have exceeded your powers; you
have done that which you had no right to
do, and I therefore send back the Act, in
order that you may amend it." But, as
the case was one of emergency, the noble
Lord might also introduce a Bill vesting
in the Governor General of the Austra-
lian Colonies power to assent to the

Act so amended at once in the name of Her Majesty. That Bill might also be coupled with another making such concessions to the Colonial Legislature as the Legislature had assumed to itself without the authority of Parliament, and giving to it the land fund, and anything else which the noble Lord thought it ought to have. The other course would be to do in effect what we were now asked to do in substance it-namely, to sweep away the machinery of enabling Her Majesty to assent to a Bill which the Colonial Legislature had never passed, and to legislate directly on the subject. If the noble Lord thought the House ought to make a constitution for the colony, let them do it, but let them have the question brought fairly before them, so that they might know what they were about. He protested against the plan of passing a Bill to enable Her Majesty to assent, not to a Bill that had been passed by the Legislature of Victoria, but to another and a different Bill which, even had it been passed by that Legislature, had been passed by it ultra vires.

LORD JOHN RUSSELL said, he did not think that either of the courses proposed by the hon. Gentleman would be preferable to that which the Government desired to adopt. The hon. Gentleman was mistaken in supposing that it was proposed to insert in this Bill provisions which the Legislature of Victoria had not sanctioned, but the hon. Gentleman was quite correct in stating that the enactments of the Legislature of Victoria were ultra vires, that they interfered with certain Imperial Acts, and that they touched upon matters which were strictly within the province of Her Majesty and Parliament. He proposed, therefore, to take generally the Bill of the Legislature of Victoria as far as concerned its own constitution, but to omit certain proposals which would limit the power vested in the Crown of disallowing the Acts passed by the colonies. The Bill, therefore, although it would certainly not contain all that the Legislature of Victoria had proposed, would not contain anything to which it had not given its assent, and thus, in his opinion, would be within the powers given by Parliament to the Australian colonies to form constitutions for themselves. It must be recollected that both of these constitutions arrived in this country during the last recess. If they had been sent back they could not have arrived in time to give validity to these Bills in the course of this Session. The hon.

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