Mr. C. I. Orr-Ewing:
asked the Minister of Defence whether he will consider starting the recently-announced education allowances for Service children at nine years of age in place of 11 years of age in order to give such children adequate continuity of schooling before taking the 11-plus examination.
Is my right hon. and learned Friend aware that frequent changes of schools, which these grants are intended to avoid, represent a serious difficulty to children when they come to the 11-plus examination, other children being more fortunate in this respect?
It is, of course, in order to avoid the disadvantages of these frequent changes that the scheme of allowances has been introduced. We had better wait and see how it works before we consider possible modifications.
As only half the rate is being paid in respect of children of men in the Services compared with that in respect of the children of men in the Foreign Service, does not the right hon. and learned Gentleman think there should be ample scope for a reduction in the age limit in these cases?