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Commissioner MARLAND. Definitely no. It should decrease by substantial numbers the staffing requirements at the State level.
Mr. BELL. Could State transfer funds from five broad areas be arbitrarily transferred to another?
I understand they can be.
Commissioner MARLAND. With the exception of those funds declared for disadvantaged children, there is a permissiveness concerning some transfers up to 30 percent of the amounts.
Mr. BELL. I am not quite clear on one point.
It goes directly to the qualifying school district, where children live on Federal property.
Category B is transferrable. It will become general funds for the State.
Mr. Bell. Up to 30 percent of it?
Commissioner MARLAND. Yes. Thirty percent may be transferred to districts not enrolling category B pupils.
Mr. BELL. Will educational interest groups have an influence on the use of Federal funds, and I am sure that the Advisory Council
Commissioner MARLAND. Our design calls for a clearly established State plan, to be widely circulated, and inspected, and the very real presence of a widely representative Council, Advisory Council to give surveillance to this problem.
Mr. Bell. As I understand it, the civil rights feature will adequately be protected because of the very nature of its being Federal funds, with the understanding, it is Federal funds.
I think it is very important that the civil rights be protected, because, of course, some of these moneys will go to the Southern States, or other States, that may have civil rights problems.
Mr. KURZMAN. Yes, Mr. Bell.
The bill makes specific reference to the Civil Rights Act of 1961, and also requires specific auditing, with regard to all the Federal priorities so that there will be a full accounting of how the funds are spent in this regard. The civil rights priority of course is the first on that list.
Commissioner MARLAND. It can be withheld in the absence of Civil Rights compliance, Mr. Bell.
Mr. BELL. What effect would revenue sharing have on the disadvantaged?
You are certain that under these programs the disadvantaged school districts would get the proper amount of money?
Commissioner MARLAND. As nearly as we could see, it would be quite equivalent to title I as it is now established, but it probably would be more refined. The local conditions, assessed by the State and local school district, would have given sharper definition on the qualifying pupils, as distinct from what we have to do across the country with very blunt measures.
Chairman PERKINS. Mr. Brademas.
Gentlemen, I have great respect for you both, but I should be less than candid if I did not tell you that in 13 years on this committee, rarely have I heard such weak and contradictory and inaccurate testimony on education from the executive branch.
I think in your criticism of the categorical programs, you have set up an army of strawmen, and have mowed them down.
I think under the guise of pleading for coordination and decentralization, you have centralized power for decisionmaking, and placed education in this country in the hands of appointed bureaucrats, who would operate through guidelines.
Commissioner Marland, you said in your prepared statement, that in the main, these categorical elementary and secondary education laws in their time were right and good.
That almost suggests to the uninformed person that we have had these laws for decades and decades, but you know as well as I do, that most of the major laws we have had only a very short time in this country, laws like the Elementary and Secondary Act, which, for example, was signed in 1965.
Or, I can refer to categorical programs in my own subcommittee, the Environmental Education Act, the Drug Abuse Education Act, which were only passed last year, both good examples of categorical programs. So I think your representations are not really fully candid.
I would add that the so-called categorical programs, which you attacked, are not being forced on the people by appointed bureaucrats, but are the products of the effect of the elected representatives of the people in the House and the Senate, who are making judgments on important national needs. I know that your administration opposed education about the environment and I know that your administration opposed legislation providing help to schools to teach children about the dangers of drug abuse. I know that because both of these measures were written in my subcommittee.
You complain about red tape, but you are the ones in this administration who with respect to title I, ESEA, pressed for comparability, which certainly imposes red tape on local school districts, and it is your administration that is pressing for the Federal Government to impose leverage for reforms in higher education through the so-called Foundation for Higher Education.
You talk about wanting to give more assistance to the States.
I have seen revenue sharing in the State of Indiana, under the law enforcement assistance program, where my Governor has taken Federal funds. under a block grant program, and used these tax dollars to get an airplane and fly his family around the State.
I do not observe any school officials in my State, at the State level, or local level, pouring into my office--and they know I am on the Education Committee —complaining against these categorical programs.
Those officials rather want more money under the categorical programs. They are not coming in here and saying that Federal bureaucrats are commanding them and telling them what to do with the money.
I do not hear that kind of complaint.
And I am sure I would hear that kind of complaint if your charge Tere a true one.
You are talking about State education priorities. What about local education priorities?
Look at the differences in percentages of State aid to local school districts in this country, and you will see that the figures for State aid run all the way to 78 percent in North Carolina to 64 percent in
another to 41 percent to 37 percent, and they vary from Illinois to Indiana to California and down to 21 percent in Oregon.
The amount of State aid to meet the cost of local public schools is only 10 percent in New Hampshire, and here you are talking about taking Federal money, a drop in the bucket, some 7 percent of all of the elementary and secondary school costs in this country, and you want to take more Federal tax dollars and send them out to the States, to distribute in that kind of an inequitable pattern.
Now, Commissioner Marland, I applauded your endorsement of the Serrano decision in California, and it seems to me there might have been something in your testimony about the implications of that possibly historic decision for the patterns of financing of public education in this country. But I heard nothing from you about that, so I do hope that we would not have quite such sweeping and inaccurate statements from you about Federal education programs. I must say that I believe you have terribly misrepresented the historic facts of the development of categorical education legislation as well as the present pattern of decision making with respect to these programs.
I have been on this committee for 13 years and participated in these decisions.
Others on the committee may have a different pair of spectacles than I have, but I simply do not recognize that you have given us a true and honest picture of the facts of life.
Commissioner MARLAND. May I reply, Mr. Chairman?
I testified, Mr. Brademas, on a good many of the very important pieces of categorical legislation as an enthusiastic supporter before this committee over the years.
Mr. BRADEMAS. I remember that.
Commissioner MARLAND. And when I say that I do include such legislation as the Smith-Hughes Act of 1917, and subsequent legislation surrounding vocational education.
Mr. BRADEMAS. Did you support the 1963 Vocational Education Act?
Commissioner MARLAND. Indeed I did.
Commissioner MARLAND. That is what I have testified to, and I have applauded the leadership of this committee and Mr. Brademas for the wisdom he has brought to education.
When you speak of categorical education legislation, such as drug abuse legislation, which we are working very hard on, and environmental education, these are not the types of categorical support that we are talking about.
Mr. BRADEMAS. What are you talking about then?
Commissioner MARLAND. We are talking about formula grants for elementary and secondary education.
The illustrations you have used are program grants. They are different. They are not part of the package of revenue sharing.
Let me go on further. You spoke of the Serrano question.
Perhaps when you were out of the room, I dealt with Serrano in response to a question.
Mr. BRADEMAS. I was in the room. I heard your entire statement.
Commissioner MARLAND. Very good, then, because you must not have heard me speak to the Serrano issue.
Mr. BRADEMAS. Not in depth.
Commissioner MARLAND. Very good. It was not the subject of today's testimony, that is why it was not in the written record.
It came up as a question about broader financial problems of which it is very much a part.
Mr. BRADEMAS. Then we are in agreement.
Commissioner MARLAND. Absolutely, and I hope we are in agreement on our attitude towards the history of great legislation which has come out of this committee, which I have testified to year after year, not as necessarily a part of the administration. But I still hold, where we reach the point, where these categories now being put together
Chairman PERKINS. Mr. Hansen.
I might say with all due respect to my good friend from Indiana, I think I do have a different pair of spectacles as I read and listen to the same testimony.
I would commend both of the witnesses for what I think is a very excellent statement, and a statement that does face up to the issues that we will have to deal with in the future.
Now, as I read your testimony, it is not so much an indictment of the categorical approach in past years, as it is a judgment that it is not going to work in the future in the same pattern that we have seen it in the past.
Now, I happen to be one of those who believe very strongly that the Federal support of education must increase.
I think the Serrano decision makes it very clear that we are going to have to undertake some basic changes in the support of education across this country, and the Federal role will have to increase, so the question then becomes through what kind of delivery system, through what kind of vehicle, through what kind of mechanism, can we channel the Federal resources into education, and obtain the best results. It seems to me, also, that one of the strengths of the revenue-sharing concept is that it preserves the principle of the local school which is threatened as more and more of the funds are channeled through complicated and complex redtape coming from the Federal Government to the local school district.
think it is important that we retain that local identity which the flexibility implicit in revenue-sharing promises.
Let me ask two brief questions, if I have an opportunity within my time limit.
The first one is a followup of a question raised by my friend from California, Mr. Bell.
It is with respect to the effect on State departments. It was pointed out that it would not necessarily increase what was termed the bureaucracy at the State level.
Does this mean, on the other hand, that there will be wholesale termination, or shifting or transfers within the State educational organization?
Commissioner MARLAND. I would think not, Mr. Hansen, any more than there would be in the Office of Education.
It would mean the talented and competent professional people would be able to turn their energies to teaching and learning, as distinct from administration and paperwork. There should be certainly no termination of such people.
Their freedom from paperwork should be obtained, and they should be permitted to be truly professional people, Mr. Hansen.
Mr. HANSEN. You also spoke of full comparability on basic expenditures as a precondition of a State being eligible to receive funds.
Could you explain that in a little more detail, and talk about the kinds of standards and criteria that might be applied to meet the test of full comparability?
Commissioner MARLAND. I would be pleased to.
I think it may help to respond to Mr. Brademas earlier charges, that comparability is unnecessary and unintended by the Office of Education.
We felt that title I in all of its very important priority, its concerns, as a product of this Congress, should go to the children for whom it was intended, and that it be a sum of added money to that school district, deroted to the needs of those children qualifying.
This is what comparability means. We found throughout the country there were delinquencies in the ways in which the moneys appropriated by Congress, and the laws passed by Congress, were truly not always reaching the child intended, and that those moneys were either substituted for local moneys or moneys that were spent in other ways than intended.
I would ask Deputy Commissioner Mattheis to add his experience on that subject.
It is an important subject.
Dr. MATTHEIS. I think we have had many cases, Mr. Hansen, and members of the committee, where school districts have been spending unequal amounts of dollars for education of given children within a given school district.
What comparability does, is simply to start at a base line where an equal amount of dollars is spent on all of the children, and then add title I to the education programs, to give them a better program, a greater program.
There is one exclusion, which is with regard to salaries paid to teachers because of longevity. Including teachers' salaries, based on longevity. That would have provided for a compounding factor that would have been intolerable.
Comparability is simply a matter of trying to get equal dollars spent on children, and then adding title I funds to those programs, so they could have more of a program.
Mr. HANSEN. Thank you very much.
This legislation before us now really does not offer the school districts across the country any immediate meaningful assistance to deal with the problems of keeping their schools open.
I would not want anyone to get the impression that it does somehow or other.
Commissioner MARLAND. Not at all. It was never intended to do that.
Mr. Pucinski. The additional $200 million, that would be merely to beef up the existing categorical programs?
Commissioner MARLAND. Only to hold harmless in the event of a formula that could not precisely equate present levels. It is not intended to be an increase.