Column 262charge. Again I ask my right hon. Friend to persuade the Treasury to be more generous with a pay settlement this year than in the recent past.
I draw my right hon. Friend's attention to the amendment in his name and in the names of his ministerial colleagues. It is significant that my right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer put his name to that amendment. I hope that he understands and appreciates the need to increase the funding available for teachers. There is another reason why the Treasury should loosen the purse strings. Teachers are no longer able to negotiate pay or conditions. That option has been removed, so a pay settlement should be more generous. We should show teachers that they have not lost through the abolition of Burnham--rather they should be seen to have gained. In regard to numbers of teachers, the pupil-teacher ratio of 17 : 1 is the best ever and there have been improvements in class size, with the number of pupils taught in classes of 31 or more having fallen by an average of more than 10 per cent. Having said that, local education authorities are increasingly able to help themselves. My own local education authority of Warwickshire is doing a great deal to keep in touch with inactive teachers and seeking to bring back to the profession those women who left it to have families. That point was made by my right hon. Friend in his opening speech. However, those returning to the profession need more support and training. When the Minister of State replies to the debate, she may wish to refer to that specific point.
Clearly, there is a substantial reservoir of teacher talent in society which should be brought back into the schools where it can do most good. But it is important to get teacher numbers into perspective. We should remember that last year only 1.5 per cent. of all primary posts and 1 per cent. of all secondary posts were unfilled. That is fewer than in 1987. I was interested that the Universities Funding Council said earlier this year :
"It is pleasing to note that in 1988, after a slight dip in 1987, the figure for qualified students known to have obtained a teaching post in the United Kingdom returned to its normal level (75.1 per cent.) : this was despite the increase in output."
The Opposition believe that they have discovered an issue out of which they might make some cheap political advantage. Not for the first time, they are wrong--they were wrong last time and they are wrong again today.
Mr. Win Griffiths (Bridgend) : Having heard the Secretary of State's speech, once more we can give him 10 out of 10 for complacency, but when it came to recognising the nature of the problem, he attempted to brush it aside as something of little or no consequence. According to the Secretary of State, if there was a problem, the ultimate responsibility lay with the local education authorities. He told us grandly that he trained the teachers and it was up to the local authorities to employ them. Rather like the way in which the Secretary of State for Employment has reduced unemployment artificially, and the Chancellor of the Exchequer would dearly love to take mortgage calculations out of the retail price index, the Secretary of State for Education and Science is fiddling with the problem.
The problem first became serious in London, but there is plenty of evidence that it is spreading to other local authority areas. In Oxfordshire and Devon, local education authorities are experiencing serious shortages,
Column 263although hon. Members might think that those places would have sufficient attraction for teachers. The city of Birmingham has more than 600 vacancies in September--350 in the primary sector and 264 in the secondary sector, of which more than 40 are for English. Those places probably will not be filled in September. There is a great likelihood that the problem in Tower Hamlets and Southwark, where pupils are not getting full-time education, will spread to other parts of the country.
The problem is not simply particular areas suffering teacher shortages ; it is much more widespread in certain subjects. The Secretary of State boasted that it was his duty to provide training for teachers and that there were more teachers entering training than ever before. But he did not tell us that, in certain subjects, the DES targets in 1988 were well below the requirement for the subjects in which the shortages were most serious. For example, in mathematics there was a 27 per cent. shortage of students entering the PGCE course. In physics, the figure was 23 per cent., in chemistry 42 per cent., in craft, design and technology 22 per cent., and in modern languages 14 per cent. There may be more graduates entering teacher training but in certain critical subjects the DES targets are not being met, and, by definition, the existing problem is bound to become worse.
Mr. Dalyell : Figures from the Royal Society of Chemistry suggest that in July 1987 there were 669 applications and in July 1989 there were only 540. The Royal Society of Chemistry has every reason to be extremely concerned.
Mr. Griffiths : I thank my hon. Friend for those figures, which underline exactly what I have been saying about the failure of the DES to get teachers into training in certain critical subjects. That is not the end of the story. More graduates and more students are taking the BEd route into teacher training, but a large number of them are not completing the courses. There is a 25 per cent. drop-out rate for the BEd. Thankfully it is lower for the PGCE--only 10 per cent.--but there is a drop-out rate. The Secretary of State expressed no concern about that and boldly trumpeted the fact that more men and women were entering teacher training of one sort or another. When those teachers are trained, one third of them in the first year do not go into teaching, so that is a further dampening of the glowing reports on those going into training by the Secretary of State. Let us not divert ourselves from the fact that, whatever figures the Department of Education and Science comes up with, the problem is getting worse.
The Secretary of State did not have a great deal to say either about pay in the profession. We need to examine that point specifically. After all, his Interim Advisory Committee on School Teachers' Pay and Conditions said in its last report, when it had been given a limit of £385 million :
"we have found the £385 million limit on the Committee's recommendations for 1989-90 to be gravely constraining."
The committee realised the problem and knew then that the limit would cause problems in arriving at a settlement.
In its report last year, the Committee told the Secretary of State :
"We can do no more than urge the Secretary of State to consider further how much he is prepared to make available to secure the willing co-operation of all teachers."
Column 264Conservative Members should not be asking us how much we shall pay the teachers. We are not able to pay them now. It is their own Secretary of State who has that role and duty, and he is the person who should be asked how much he is prepared to pay teachers in the coming year.
Mr. Griffiths : Although the Minister says that the Secretary of State has already done it, I have heard no global figure or promise of a percentage. If there are such figures, I should be interested to learn of them afterwards.
We are told in glowing terms that teachers have received a 30 per cent. increase in real terms in the past few years. As my hon. Friend the Member for City of Durham (Mr. Steinberg) pointed out, it is not how much teachers have received, but the comparison with other graduates that counts. The Financial Times recently carried out a survey, dividing the professions and industry into 11 different sectors. In 1988, the starting pay for the public services, which included teachers, was at the bottom of the scale. At the end of the first year, it was still at the bottom, as it was at the end of the third year. At the end of the fifth year, graduates in the public service had, on average, managed to pull themselves up to eighth place in the league.
As for the development of salaries, a graduate in teaching after five years would expect his salary to be 40 per cent. higher, whereas a graduate outside teaching would expect his salary to be 70 per cent. higher. After 10 years, the salary of a graduate in teaching would be 56 per cent. higher, whereas a graduate outside teaching would have more than doubled his salary. Pay is critical and fundamental for such reasons.
The interim advisory committee said in its last report : "We continue to be impressed by teachers' commitment and their high professional standards ; but morale appears to be low as we judged it to be last year. We believe pay to be a critical factor in morale." The committee spelled out its views clearly, and I hope that the Secretary of State will respond.
I want to refer to my own local education authority, the county of Mid Glamorgan, and the problem of teacher shortages in the context of the introduction of the national curriculum. Although the Secretary of State has announced several initiatives which should make some small impression on the problem, there will still be significant problems in Wales in, for example, the introduction of the teaching of the Welsh language. My own local authority is well known in Wales as one of the foremost promoters of bilingual education. It found, in a survey of its schools, that almost 500 teachers were unable to teach Welsh, but many of them were willing to undertake training so that they could teach the language. However, the amount provided by the Welsh Office for in-service training for Welsh language teaching in the county of Mid Glamorgan was about one quarter of what the county hoped to receive. Obviously, there is a need for an increased commitment of resources for the challenges to be met.
The Minister of State, Welsh Office (Mr. Wyn Roberts) We are spending some £233,000 this year on in-service teacher training in the Welsh language. We shall be spending a total of £1.2 million over the next three years.
Mr. Griffiths : I thank the Minister for that intervention. However, he will be aware that he provided me with those figures in a written answer only the other day. Despite the £233,000, and despite the £1.2 million over the next three years, there will be barely enough to touch the real problem. That problem is repeated throughout education in England and Wales. The resources do not meet the problems. A survey of science teaching in Mid Glamorgan secondary schools showed that that one county alone needed about 80 more teachers. If that figure were repeated across the United Kingdom--the position in Mid Glamorgan is likely to be better than in most other places, because the problem of teacher shortages is not as severe in Wales--one would see that the Government are not providing sufficient resources to deal with the problem. I hope that the Minister of State will outline clearly what she considers the nature of the problem to be and how the Government's resources will deal with it.
Mr. David Evennett (Erith and Crayford) : I am always delighted to follow the hon. Member for Bridgend (Mr. Griffiths), with whom I serve on the Select Committee on Education, Science and Arts ; but, together with his hon. Friends the Members for City of Durham (Mr. Steinberg) and for Sheffield, Hillsborough (Mr. Flannery), who also serve on the Select Committee, his analysis is wrong and his solutions, precious few though they are, are also wrong. I also want to correct the hon. Member for Southwark and Bermondsey (Mr. Hughes), who said that the Select Committee was about to publish a report. The report has not yet been agreed, so he can believe it to be critical only as a result of press speculation, not fact. Until the report has been agreed by the members of the Select Committee, it cannot be critical.
We can all agree that there is a problem of teacher supply. The reasons for that are many and varied and the blame cannot be put at any one door. The Opposition motion and the support for it are far too negative and simplistic. We know that there is a shortage of teachers in certain parts of Greater London and we know that there are shortages in certain key subjects. But emotive words such as "crisis" are not only untrue, but do not help. We are not numerically short of teachers. If one considers the number in the pool of inactive teachers, we would have no problem if we could bring them back into the profession. We should be exploring the possibilities of job sharing or part-time work. We should consider packages to encourage people to move into teaching shortage areas.
The reasons for the shortages are many and varied. We have discussed them at great length in the Select Committee and in the Chamber today. Morale, pay, career structure, professionalism, the constant re-organisation of schools in the 1970s and the decline in the value that the public give to education and the education service all play a part. The Government, especially my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State, are to be congratulated on several important innovations during my right hon. Friend's term of office. He has put education back in the centre of national life. He has stressed its importance and brought about radical reforms to enhance education provision.
Mr. Evennett : The national curriculum, local management at schools, opting-out proposals and CTCs are all important in improving the relevance of education, thereby enhancing the status of teachers. Such reforms should be welcomed, but Labour does not do so--it merely condemns and criticises.
My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State disbanded the Burnham system, an outdated and unworkable piece of machinery for determining teachers' salaries. Now he proposes new ideas to deal with the annual salary awards of teachers. A better negotiating machinery will enhance the status of teachers. The innovative proposals to increase the number of teachers by the articled and licensed teacher routes are to be welcomed. They offer opportunities for well-qualified people to go into the profession and ensure that there is more on-the-job training in schools rather than in the ivory towers of the colleges.
Merely increasing salaries will not encourage more people to be teachers. We must ensure that we get the right people for our children, for the taxpayer and the ratepayer, and for the future of the country. Children are our future and teachers have an important and special role to play. Most teachers do a good job in difficult circumstances, and Conservative Members praise them, but the profession and the trade unions must change some of their attitudes. More money is needed--not across the board, but selectively. I should like to highlight the position of the middle-range teachers, who have been in the profession for 10 to 15 years and who are aged between 35 and 45 and underpaid.
We need to consider housing for teachers in Greater London, where house prices are astronomical and a disincentive to teacher mobility. Teachers cannot move into Greater London and the home counties for promotion because they cannot afford to buy a house. When determining teachers' salaries, more emphasis should be placed on market forces with greater regional differences to take account of the different regional costs of living. Only then will there be greater staff mobility and an influx of people into the teaching profession. Local management of schools will be of great value, as will the other Government-sponsored reforms which are designed to increase value for money in education and provide a better quality education service. Better schools with better educational emphasis would generate more and better teachers and a vocation to teach could again be in vogue. This has been an interesting debate. We have heard little from the Opposition about what they would do if they ever returned to power. They have no idea what to do, other than just throwing money at a particular problem. Putting in money across the board will not solve the problems in the shortage areas. Other measures are needed, and Conservative Members have made constructive suggestions.
There is a problem, and more action is needed--we all accept that. The Government are aware of the problem and are actively working to reduce the shortages. Teaching remains a fine career, which interests many young people, and also many older people. We have a duty to encourage more entrants to go into the profession and to ensure that they are well rewarded and have a good career structure. Much has been done, but there is more to be done, especially in the shortage subjects and in the home counties and Greater London. We look for a partnership of trade
Column 267unions, teachers, Government and local education authorities to solve the problem. I believe that we can and will solve it. 6.35 pm
Mr. Derek Fatchett (Leeds, Central) : We have made substantial progress since the last debate on this subject on 2 May. In that debate, almost all the Conservative Members who spoke tried to argue that there was not a problem of teacher supply and teacher shortage. The ground has shifted substantially since then. The hon. Member for Berkshire, East (Mr. MacKay) made a number of references to the problems of teacher supply and shortage in his constituency. The hon. Member for Sevenoaks (Mr. Wolfson) made a telling contribution about the problems facing the Kent local education authority. He said that he noticed the differences between the earlier comments by Ministers and their comments now, and that point struck home. The hon. Member for Erith and Crayford (Mr. Evennett) said that there was now a problem of teacher supply and shortage.
The consensus is growing, and it is now so strong that we have taken the Secretary of State with us, although not all the way. Perhaps, if I were writing his end-of-term report, I would say that he had made some improvement in terms of understanding the problems of teacher supply and shortage. He admitted that there was a problem. He defined it as a regional problem and limited it to London and the home counties. He was right, but he told only half the tale. There is a more substantial problem, of which the right hon. Gentleman is fully aware and about which his Department provided great detail in its evidence to the Select Committee on teacher supply and teacher shortage.
It is worth reminding ourselves of the likely shortages by the mid-1990s, according to the Government's current projections. They predict shortages of 1,000 teachers out of a total demand for 20,000 in mathematics ; 1,500 and 2,000 respectively out of a total demand for 11,000 teachers each in physics and chemistry ; 6,000 out of a total demand for 22,000 in technology ; 2,500 out of a total demand for 19,000 in modern languages ; and 2,000 out of a total demand for 7,000 in music. It is not just a regional problem ; it is also very much a subject problem, and the Secretary of State was wrong not to refer to that.
The Secretary of State was wrong also not to draw the attention of the House and the country--although parents already recognise this, as I am sure do teachers--to the substantial hidden shortages in terms of the delivery of the school curriculum. The most recent available figures are for 1984. The Department of Education and Science seems to be reluctant to collect figures on teacher supply and teacher shortage. According to the Department's evidence to the Select Committee, 13 per cent. of timetabled tuition in mathematics and 18 per cent. in physics were provided by teachers with no higher education qualification in those subjects. There is not only a regional shortage but a hidden subject shortage.
Mr. Harry Cohen (Leyton) : The Secretary of State said that east London is a particularly bad area for teacher shortages, and it has been confirmed by parents in my own constituency that there will be a big shortage. Does my hon. Friend agree that, apart from one small pilot project in Newham to get ethnic minority teachers, the Secretary of State has outlined no action to tackle that problem in east London?
Mr. Fatchett : My hon. Friend makes a telling point from his own experience. Perhaps I can refer back to it later in my speech. Conservative Members have given a number of explanations of why we have a problem. The hon. Member for Rugby and Kenilworth (Mr. Pawsey) made a speech that was unusually disloyal to the Government. Presumably it had not been vetted-- for the first time ever--by the Whips. He said that he would like the Treasury to loosen the purse strings on teachers'pay. He is not alone in saying that. Perhaps the hon. Gentleman gets most of his political ideas from the Daily Mail --that would come as no great surprise to those of us who have watched his intellectual development over the years.
He will have noticed, no doubt, that there have recently been two articles on the subject in the Daily Mail . Last Tuesday, 11 July, its education correspondent made the important point that this year's pay rise will be less than the current rate of inflation. He added : "That simply is not good enough."
Today, a Daily Mail editorial says that a recent survey showed that many young graduates are drawn towards teaching as a career and concludes :
"it is only the poor pay that puts them off."
The Government say that there have been increases in real pay for teachers since they came to office, and that that makes teaching more attractive as a profession but, as hon. Members on both sides of the House have said, it is the comparison with other graduate professions that is crucial. The growth of average earnings in other graduate professions is better than the growth of average earnings in teaching.
I shall illustrate that point with some figures. During the 10 years that the Government have been in office, average real earnings for teachers have increased at an annual rate of 3.9 per cent. We should compare that with the figure for accountancy--which must be dear to many Conservative Members --which is 4.1 per cent. For the financial, insurance and taxation sector, the figure is 6.4 per cent., for computer programmers it is 4 per cent. and for medical practitioners it is 4.8 per cent. Despite all the Government's claims about teachers' pay, it has grown more slowly than the comparable all-graduate professions that I have referred to.
Mr. George Walden (Buckingham) rose --
Mr. Fatchett : I will not give way, because of the shortage of time. I am sure that the hon. Gentleman will appreciate that. The Government's argument on teachers' pay does not hold up. As the Daily Mail and many hon. Members have said, there is clearly a need to look again at teachers' pay.
There has been substantial reference to low morale in the teaching profession. The Secretary of State says that the Labour party does not like to make proposals on how to deal with the crisis of teacher shortage and supply. Let me offer him three or four points about morale that would have a very positive impact on teacher supply. First, it is important for the Government, and any future Government, to restore to teachers the right to bargain over their pay and conditions. The loss of that right was a deep blow to morale in the teaching profession, and the longer the Government go on imposing their own pay increases on teachers, the further morale will collapse.
Secondly, is it not the case that, when the Government introduced the Education Reform Act 1988, and when the
Column 269Secretary of State has talked about his reform of education, until recently, he has never thought it necessary to take the teachers, their professionalism and their experience with him in the process of change? Throughout, the Secretary of State has denigrated the teachers' contribution and their professionalism and tried to impose change without taking them with him.
Perhaps I visit more schools than the Secretary of State--that would not be a great achievement--but when I visited a secondary school in north Yorkshire the other day, the head teacher told me that the school's science teachers were training and offering advice, out of school and without pay, to primary teachers in feeder schools so that they had some feel for, knowledge of and involvement in the development of primary science and the national curriculum.
Mr. Fatchett : Yes, it is well done by those teachers, but how often are they criticised by Conservative Members, and how often is their commitment recognised by the Government? If the process of change under the Education Reform Act 1988 had taken teachers with the Government and with the reforms, we would have had a very different situation in relation to morale.
Thirdly, there are roughly 400,000 people in the pool of inactive, qualified teachers, yet we rarely hear any proposal from the Secretary of State or Conservative Members to try to attract them back into teaching. Why does he not find out more about that pool of inactive teachers and their child care needs, so that they can go back into the teaching profession? Why do the Government not provide more refresher courses so that some of those teachers can go back into the classroom, do the job that they trained for and make the contribution that they want to make?
The Government seem to have written off totally those inactive teachers, but they are an important pool of expertise and it is about time that the Government came forward with proposals for them. One of the most notable elements of the debate was the Secretary of State's refusal to answer the question put to him by my hon. Friend the Member for Blackburn (Mr. Straw). It was a simple, important and potent question for parents throughout the country. Will the Secretary of State give parents a guarantee that no child will be without a teacher, and so be sent home from school, this autumn? Will he give that guarantee? The Secretary of State refused to answer that question. He can fiddle with his papers now in embarrassment, but he knows that the answer is that he does not have the ability or the policies to deliver the duties that are placed upon him in the Education Reform Act 1988. Nor does he have the ability or the policies to deliver the moral responsibility placed upon him to ensure that all our children have equal access to education. During the debate, every Conservative Member, in lines presumably provided by the Department of Education and Science, said that responsibility lies with the Labour Opposition, as they called the debate. I remind the Government that they have been in office for 10 years, and that they are the cause of the problem. The time will come, very shortly, when the Conservative party is out of office. Meanwhile, the Government have to stand up to their
Column 270responsibilities. While they fail to stand up to those responsibilities, the education of thousands of children is being endangered and the standard of their education is being reduced. It is time that the Government stood up to those responsibilities and made sure that there is a real guarantee to parents and children that there will be teachers in our classrooms this September.
The Minister of State, Department of Education and Science (Mrs. Angela Rumbold) : I have listened with care to the remarks of hon. Members on both sides of the House. I have accepted some of the points made by my hon. Friends and I congratulate them on making some sensible suggestions. I was saddened by the remarks of the hon. Member for Sheffield, Hillsborough (Mr. Flannery), whose very tone served only to exacerbate the problem by reinforcing the views repeatedly expressed by the media and by Opposition Members about low teacher morale. One almost has the feeling that Opposition Members want that to continue--[ Hon. Members :-- "It is true."]--although I know that that cannot be true because many Opposition Members have the interests of children at heart.
Opposition Members should listen more often to speeches such as that made by my hon. Friend the Member for Erith and Crayford (Mr. Evennett). Instead of repeatedly endorsing low morale and referring to difficulties in teacher supply and so on, my hon. Friend rightly paid tribute to my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for the way in which, during his three years in office, he has raised the level of public interest in education to such an extent that teachers now begin to feel that they are appreciated as members of our society because of the job that they are doing in schools and for children. Teachers also have much to achieve by implementing the national curriculum. In that regard, I was surprised to hear the hon. Member for Hillsborough attacking the national curriculum, which, after all, was a direct response to the long-standing debate about the standards of education in this country, that had been going on since 1977, when a Prime Minister of the hon. Gentleman's own political persuasion raised the subject.
Mr. Flannery : I did not make any formal attack on the national curriculum--I attacked the Secretary of State, and, indeed, the Minister, because they will not give us enough teachers to deliver the national curriculum.
My hon. Friend the Member for Berkshire, East (Mr. MacKay) made a thoughtful speech. He started by saying that he was
disappointed--rightly so, in my view--at the level of this debate. He rightly identified the serious problems which arises from high housing costs in some parts of the country. Ministers are fully aware of that problem. We take the point that it has a bearing not only on teachers but on all those who work in areas which have experienced astronomical increases in house prices over the past few years. I share my hon. Friend's view that it is a good thing that house prices in badly affected areas are now beginning to fall.
My hon. Friend also made the valid point that it is important to be able to attract men as well as women into our primary schools. We need the right balance of good
Column 271men and women teachers in our primary and secondary schools and Ministers have some sympathy with the view that we should consider how to tackle the regional differences.
In parenthesis, I want to ask a question, to which I am sure I shall get an answer. The hon. Member for Blackburn (Mr. Straw) referred to Labour's policy of a national housing allowance for teachers. Like my hon. Friend the Member for Berkshire, East, I have a little difficulty with, and certainly distaste for, the idea that taxpayers should subsidise such a policy. Perhaps the hon. Member for Blackburn will take this opportunity to tell us what Labour's national housing allowance means, how it will be applied and to whom and how much he would expect it to cost. That information would be most interesting.
Mr. Straw : I am delighted to accept the Minister's invitation. Almost every Conservative Member who spoke in the debate referred to the problems caused by high housing costs in some parts of the country. The answer to that problem is not regional pay--it is to deal with the high cost of housing through a nationally funded allowance which would vary from area to area according to variations in housing costs.
Mrs. Rumbold : I am afraid that the worst fears of my hon. Friend the Member for Berkshire, East have been realised. Not only do we not know how much the allowance would cost--we know that it is to be nationally funded and we must therefore assume that it will be financed from the taxpayer's pocket.
The hon. Member for Southwark and Bermondsey (Mr. Hughes) was concerned about the Inner London education authority and the cost of teachers. Similar problems apply in many other high-cost housing areas. The hon. Gentleman welcomed my right hon. Friend's initiative to enable teachers from New Zealand and Australia to gain qualified teacher status after one term. As the hon. Gentleman knows, we discussed that this morning. It is an unfortunate condemnation of ILEA's policies that the young woman concerned is contemplating leaving its employ because she is not being paid as a qualified teacher although qualified teacher status has been granted to her by the Department of Education and Science. I should like an explanation from ILEA of its policies on employing teachers.
In my view, we need to take a hard look at the way in which some local authorities operate a ring-fence, no-redundancy policy, which means that good, well-qualified new teachers cannot find jobs. In the north, for example, some teachers trained in the secondary shortage subjects about which we have heard so much, and who have already received our £1,300 bursary, cannot find jobs locally. I am told that other authorities will not employ probationary teachers. People are being turned away from teaching because local education authorities are not interested in using their services.
In other parts of the country, early retirement is virtually an open door--
The policy on early retirement is a crazy policy at a time when some schools and authorities cannot recruit teachers to take the place of those whom they are letting go. The
Column 272hon. Member for Southwark and Bermondsey will agree with me that it is extremely important that we should address ourselves to that problem.
It has also been suggested that under the present system teachers from overseas have to be paid as instructors, and at a lower rate, pending the successful outcome of their application for qualified teacher status. That is simply not true--under the present regime, and under the new licensed teacher regime starting in September, those people can be paid as qualified teachers. If London authorities have a real problem in that regard, the solution now lies in their hands. I am grateful to my hon. Friend the Member for Sevenoaks (Mr. Wolfson) for his thoughtful speech and I was interested to hear of his support for our licensed and articled teachers policy, about which we heard nothing from the Opposition.
The hon. Member for City of Durham (Mr. Steinberg) made a sad little speech largely based on inaccurate information. He claims, for example, that we have fewer graduates now than in 1979. In fact, we now have 200,000 more students coming into higher education than in 1979. The hon. Gentleman must be amazingly out of step to say such things.
I am delighted to support the excellent speech made by my hon. Friend the Member for Rugby and Kenilworth (Mr. Pawsey), who made the very good point that local education authorities can be active in helping teacher recruitment. My hon. Friend said that the extra money granted by my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State in the education support grant should be used to help recruit people back into teaching.
Mr. Straw rose in his place, and claimed to move, That the Question be now put.
Question, That the Question be now put, put and agreed to. Question put accordingly, That the original words stand part of the Question :--
The House divided : Ayes 220, Noes 302.
Division No. 306] [6.59 pm
Abbott, Ms Diane
Adams, Allen (Paisley N)
Archer, Rt Hon Peter
Ashdown, Rt Hon Paddy
Ashley, Rt Hon Jack
Banks, Tony (Newham NW)
Barnes, Harry (Derbyshire NE)
Barnes, Mrs Rosie (Greenwich)
Beith, A. J.
Benn, Rt Hon Tony
Bennett, A. F. (D'nt'n & R'dish)
Bray, Dr Jeremy
Brown, Gordon (D'mline E)
Brown, Nicholas (Newcastle E)
Brown, Ron (Edinburgh Leith)
Bruce, Malcolm (Gordon)
Buckley, George J.
Campbell, Menzies (Fife NE)
Campbell, Ron (Blyth Valley)
Campbell-Savours, D. N.
Carlile, Alex (Mont'g)
Clark, Dr David (S Shields)
Clarke, Tom (Monklands W)
Clwyd, Mrs Ann
Cook, Frank (Stockton N)
Cook, Robin (Livingston)
Cunningham, Dr John