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Family Notices


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Detailed Lists, Results and Guides

SHOTTON SCHOOL ACCOMMODA- TION. CANON DREW SUPPORTED. I Sir,-I should be very glad if you could find space in your columns for the following com- ments upon the report in your issue of Satur- clay last of the discussion of the question of school accommodation at Shotton, at the meet- ing at Mold, ktot week, of the Flintshire Educa- tion Committee, which I feel it my duty to make as a manager of some 20 years standing of the eight Hawarkn Voluntary schools and the representative on the Flintshire County Council for the Saltney division for the past 13 years. A careful study of the figures will, I think, convince anyone giving them unprejudiced consideration that there is at all events a sufficient element of doubt as to the necessity of the large expenditure proposed by the Edu- cation Committee, to justify the claim that the matter shoukl be deferred for a time except as regards the building of a school for infants and standard 1.; and this is all that Canon Drew's resolution asks. Much stress was laid, by those who spoke in opposition to Canon Drew's resolution, upon a circidar which was issued in support of the petition which was presented to the committee, against the proposal to build a full standard school for 500 children, and it is much to be regretted that Mr. Summer (whopt.-intercut, in the educational needs of the county are fully recognised) should have spoken of thoso who had promoted the petition, wh oee intentions from their point of view are no less honest than hia own, as having made uso of "falsa pretences." This circuLar, with the issue of which I had nothing to do and which I did not see until it was in print, appears to me to contain an absolutely accurate statement of the facts of the case, namely, that (1) "The Flintshire Educa- tional Authority propose to erect a full standard school for 500 scholars close to the existing school of St. Ethel wold, in the Shotton district." This statement is based on a resolution passed by the Shotton School Accommodation Sub- committee on the 19t.h of February last. (2) '• They projx>se to add to this new oohool a Higher Standard Schoot." This statement is presumably characterised as a "false pretence" beoauTC the lioard of Education have been asked, by a resolution of the same committee, passed on tne 16th of April, 1907, to defer con- sideration of the matter for a period of (say) two years, a fact which I had forgotten when this point was under discussion. It must be noted, however, that one of these two years has already pacr^d. and in faco of the fact that some members of the committee have made up their minds that such a school shall sooner or Later be built, I fail to aoo any inacouracy in the statement upon the circular. (5) "This must mean an outlay from ten to twelve thousand pounds at least, of which the ratepaycrs of Hawarden Parish (except SeaLatid) will nave to find practically three-quarters of the cost." In defence of this figure, may I give the following figurerJ an being, I believe, a fair estimate? A full standard school for 500 children at Ell per ohitd. 5,500 Furnitihitig and fcneing, ew. 500 Land—Z acres at 5s. per yar,4 2,400 Hig-her standard school (roughly), 2,500 £ 10,900 ini-t jo, if anything, an under estimate, as at Queen's Ferry the cost worked out at over .Ell a ohild. Two acres of land is necessary, and has been applied for under this soheme, and the figure quoted does not include legal charges. I'll is is the scheme as proposed by the education authority. They have already (in 1904) obtained an order to bui!d a school for 200 infants. They have now applied for powers to build a school of full standard for 500 children (300 mixed and 200 infants). They have already in the tem- porary building- 350 chiJdren-O Standard I. and 260 infants. They must therefore. provide per- manent aooomm-odation for 300 infante and 100 taiidard I. children, leaving a small margin in each case. Roughly, therefore, a school ia needed for 400 infants and Standard I. ohildrcn. Canon Drew, and thooe who plead the causo of economy, admit that while this is necessary, it is all that is required at present, while there are 90 places empty at St. Ethelwoid's School for children of Standard II. to VII. without the additions contemplated hy the managers. Wo tnat the Council shou!d take one Bt-ep at a time, and wo say that this is aU that, if, needed Our estimate, therefore, would be: Sohoo! for infants and Standard I. for 400 children at £10 a child 4.000 Land-one acre .I. 1,200 Furlli",hing- 100 £ 5,300 In tn;s case, being infants, the oost is £1 less I per child, half the land is required, a very little furniture, because of the infants' furniture at present in the temporal-y building, and the Higher Wo think that this sum better corresponds with the present need and the present circumstances than the £ 10,000— £ 12,000 of the Council, an expenditure which if once launched upon may lead to other unknown and even greater extravagance. Such are the impressions of one who was more an interested spectator than a participator in tho remarkable discussion which took place at Mold last week, and I hope anyone who is sufficiently interested to read through so long' a letter will be, after impartial consideration of the question, led to see that the charges laid against Canon Drew of associating himself with the use of "false pretences," with ".hitting below the belt," and of an intolerance, which those who have the privilege of his friendship know his nature is incapable of, are as unjust to him as they are unworthy of those who made thent. --I remain, (icar sir, yours faithfully, E. SYDNEY TAYLOR. Little Aston, Hawarden. May 7th, 1908.