27 JANUARY 1900, Page 29



am glad to see the Spectator return to this question. I hope it is true, as you say, that "Churchmen are increas- ingly ready to accept, and even to propose, arrangements by which the special grievances felt by Nonconformists in the country districts under the present system may be mitigated or removed." Those grievances, as you know, Sir, are mainly :—(1) that, if the Nonconformist parents wish for religious education in a national school, they have no guarantee that it will be such as they approve; (2) that Non- conformists are boycotted from the teaching profession in those schools. Churchmen, on the other hand, complain that in Board-schools sufficient consideration is not paid to the religions views of parents. It seems, however, invariably for- gotten in this controversy that the National Society is still working with trust deeds which enact religious education "without regard to the religions sentiments of the parents." I am quoting from the trust deed of the Swaffham National Schools, 1838. The National Society has power either to alter suo motu, or to recommend on each body of trustees the removal of enactments like this which savour of religious persecution. And till that Society takes up the question candidly in the huge numbers of schools under its authority, it cannot honestly appeal to Parliament for the alteration of a similar grievance in Board-schools.—I am, Sir, Sul,