To J. W. Lubbock 11 October 
Down Bromley Kent
Dear Sir John Lubbock
I am much obliged to you for your note received this morning.— My ideas of the proper management of schools, would I am pretty sure from what I have occasionally heard you say, quite accord with your own; but under the present circumstances I cannot but think, that if the Privy Council deed is altered, the whole thing will fall to the ground, which will be a great loss to the parish of Down.—1
I have heard from Mr Innes2 that you do not object to the school being a National school,3 in accordance with the Resolutions passed at the time when your Family & others subscribed the large sum, you now hold in trust. And if the School is to be a National school, the Society, as I have heard stated on other occasions, absolutely require one of its trust-deeds to be used; & I presume it admits of no doubt, that the one issued by the Privy Council (though having the obnoxious clause) is the most liberal one.
Moreover it strikes me from the tenor of the Poor Law Commissioners letter to Mr Innes, that there would not be much chance of their allowing the site to be granted to any school except a national one. Further, I presume, we should deprive ourselves of aid at any future time, if not in connection with the National Society. Under these circumstances the best course appears to me to be to accept the Privy Council Trust-deed; but if you object to it, I do not believe there would be even any attempt to carry it through in Vestry, & the whole affair will fail.—
I should have hoped, that the power of appeal to the Government Inspectors4 & our individual power of withdrawing our subscriptions, would in effect have rendered the Managers sufficiently independent of the Minister for the time being, i.e. as far as the whole secular part of the education was concerned. Mr Innes says he is willing to put on written record, his willingness to admit the children of dissenters, & not enforce on them any religious doctrine, obnoxious to their parents.—5 I heartily hope that you may see some way out of the present difficulty.
Pray believe me | Dear Sir John | Your’s very faithfully | Charles Darwin Sir J. W. Lubbock Bart.
Gives his opinion on some difficulties that have arisen in connection with the establishment of the school for the poor at Down.
Please cite as
Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 1536,” accessed on 23 March 2017, http://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/DCP-LETT-1536