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Friday, 8 June 1928


Sir NEVILLE HOWSE - The answers to the honorable member's questions are as follows: -

1.   Classes and courses of instruction are held regimentally for candidates for commissions. The training instructions provide for a training cadre in each unit. Appointments are made as the result of the competitive examination held half-yearly.

2.   Although it is desirable, from a military stand-point, that an officers' training corps should be established and so improve the standard of military knowledge of officers and aspirant officers, it is doubtful if sufficient candidates for commissions in the Citizen Forces could afford additional time to attend an established officers' training corps to warrant the expenditure. The time available for military study is limited, since the aspirant officer must consider his civil avocation; but such time as he is able 'to devote is already utilized to the fullest extent.

On the 6th June, the honorable member for Brisbane (Mr. D. Cameron) asked the following questions: -

Referring to the question asked by the honorable member for Brisbane on Oth December, 1927, regarding the physical standard of senior cadets entering the Citizen Forces, and the Minister's reply of 12th December, will the Minister supply the following further information ? : -

1.   What was the percentage of senior cadets rejected as medically unfit for admission to the Citizen Forces for the year ending 31st December, 1927, in (a) the Commonwealth, and (b) the State of Queensland?

2.   What was the percentage of rejections for admission to the Senior Cadets, on the grounds of medical unfitness, for the year ending 31st December, 1927, in (o) the Commonwealth, and (6) the State of Queensland.

3.   In view of the very high percentage of medically unfit, as shown by the figures supplied in answer to previous questions on this subject, will the Minister extend the scheme of physical training in schools, which is at present very limited in scope, particularly as it is understood that all of the Education Departments of the States and all school authorities outside of State control are at present requesting additional help in the training of their teachers in this national work.

I am now in a position to furnish the following replies: -

1.   Percentage of senior cadets registered as medically unfit for admission to the Citizen Forces for the vear ended 31st December, 1927:-

 

2.   Percentage of rejections for admission to the Senior Cadets on the grounds of medical unfitness for the year ended 31st December, 1927: -

 

3.   The present scheme of physical training in schools is in accordance with an agreement entered into during 1923 with State Governments, under which the Department of Defence provides a limited number of physical training instructors for the training of teachers. The staff employed is small, but as additional expenditure in this direction could not be incurred except at the expense of other urgent defence activities, an increase in the numbers of the physical training staff is not possible. The medical authorities at Army Headquarters consider that physical training in schools alone would probably not reduce the percentage materially, as physique depends largely on heredity, ante and post-natal care, feeding, environment, medical inspection, care of teeth, hygiene of the home, and public health.







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