I should like to make a few remarks with reference to the observations of the hon. member for Broadview and the hon. member for Davenport. I assume that this discussion is really not in order, because it relates rather to national selective service regulations than to the Department of National Defence. I think I know the situation in Toronto pretty well, and I am astonished that the hon. member for Broadview is concerned about a disruption of the educational system in Toronto. He cited the leading public schools there as being affected. I know of no eighteen or eighteen and one-half year olds that are in the public schools unless they are mentally defective. The public schools are not affected at all by the order which calls for men of eighteen years subject to the draft. They are not called until they are eighteen years and six months old.
So far as the situation of the university of Toronto is concerned, I have studied it very carefully, and I want to congratulate the government upon the system which prevailed up to this year. All faculties except arts trained in the Canadian Officers' Training Corps, the university training companies. The engineering faculty is not subject to the draft. They take their basic training in the university companies but they cannot enlist without consent. So far as the medical profession is concerned, the hon. member for Parkdale knows the system which prevails under the medical procurement and assignment board, whereunder students are very grateful to this university for the opportunity extended to them of joining the army medical corps while they are taking their medical training at the university. They are getting paid around, I believe $75 or $80 a month, which enables them to pursue their studies, and immediately after their intemeships are enlisted in the army medical corps. I want to congratulate the government up.on the arrangement which was made.
So far as the arts course is concerned the system prevailing is this, that all the students take their basic training in the university
training companies. Those who are successful in their examinations are permitted to complete their full arts course, that is three years pass course or four years as an honour course in political science. Those who fail in the commencement examinations have their names submitted to the mobilization board and they are called up for service. Could there be any fairer system? In other words, what earthly use is there to permit a student who is a complete failure at the examination to go on at the university, perhaps to fail again the next year? I think he could do his duty far better in some branch of the services.
The hon. member for Broadview talks about competition at the universities. So far as the training companies are concerned, there is no competition at all at the university of Toronto. We have a Royal Canadian Air Force training company, an army training company, and a naval company. The students are given the option of joining any of the services. For instance, my boy, who is in his third year at the university of Toronto, has joined the Royal Canadian Air Force company and is taking his training, which will enable him to gain sufficient knowledge to expedite his initial training at the school.
In my opinion the statements on this matter made by the hon. member for Broadview are very much exaggerated. I have heard of no complaints. There may be the odd pupil in the high school who is somewhat backward at eighteen and one-half, who is still in the high school and is subject to the call; but so far as my experience in the city of Toronto is concerned the system which prevails was one of the best.
I want to say a word about the new regulations. I have seen them only in the press, but I have heard some objections to the regulation which lays down that fifty per cent, I think, of the successful pupils may continue their courses. It is said that the university authorities are going to have great difficulty in administering that regulation. I suggest to the government that this phase of the problem be reviewed.
Topic: OTISES EDITION