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Statement on behalf of the
National Advisory Council on
Extension of The Elementary and Secondary Education Act
Subcommittee on Education Committee on Labor and Public Welfare
United States Senate
Wednesday, September 12, 1973
Chairman Pell and Members of the Subcommittee on Education:
My name is Arthur Ballantine, and I am Chairman of the National
Advisory Council on Supplementary Centers and Services.
The Council is
mandated by the Eleme
tary and Secondary Education Act to advise the
President and the Congress concerning Title III of that Act, which pro
vides funds for innovation in education.
I appreciate the opportunity of
appearing before this Committee.
The members of the National Advisory Council have asked me to
express our support for the efforts of this Committee to stimulate discus
sion of the problems which confront us in education.
We concur with
Senator Pell's desire expressed in his comments introducing s. 1539, to
bring about a fundamental reassessment of what we are, what we have done,
and what we ought to do.
Indeed, this is what we believe the function of
an advisory council to be.
We are honored to participate in this effort
with the members of this Committee, all of whom we know to be dedicated
to the improvement of American education.
I am from the state of Colorado
and I have great respect for the ability and dedication of the member of
the Committee from my home state, Senator Dominick.
We believe Title III to be a well-written and effective piece of
legislation which accomplishes what Congress intended it to do.
convinced that federal encouragement of innovation in education has been
invaluable during the past ten years and is indispensable for the future.
For these reasons, we support the extension of Title III of the Elementary
and Secondary Education Act as provided in S. 1539.
Most of us who serve on this Council had little or no contact with
Title III before becoming members.
Our observations about the program
are made as educators and lay persons and are based on what we have seen
and heard during our terms of service on the Council.
We would like to
convey to this Committee our reasons for recommending continuation of
First, we have seen that Title III has a very important leadership
role in American education.
Every Title III project must be innovative;
that is, it must take an approach which is new in its locality.
may be unique, or it may be a creative adaptation or expansion of proven
ideas, and all are expected to take account of the research findings in
Funds appropriated for Title III go directly into projects where they
affect the daily learning and teaching experiences of children and teachers.
This is educational development inrough the application of research, and for
most school districts, the money available from Title III is the only money
from any source for this purpose.
Local schools are hard-pressed for basic
funds to support their traditional programs, and it is a rare superintendent
who has at his command the fiscal resources to implement innovation.
The contribution of Title III to the continuing renewal of American
what Senator Pell referred to in his remarks introducing
S. 1539 in the Senate, when he said:
Educational practices and methods have changed more rapidly in the last decade than during any previous 10-year period in the history of education. As a result, a greater proportion of our children are learning more and more quickly than ever before. The Federal stimulus has been, in part at least, responsible for these improvements.
We believe the case can be made even more strongly.
We believe that
the federal interest in and support for innovation has been the crucial
factor in educational change in these ten years.
In perfor: ing its leadership role, Title III is aided by several
characteristics of the legislation.
One is its flexibility. Title III
funds can be used in any area of the elementary and secondary curriculum,
and they are not targeted to any one specific student or teacher population.
Title III has therefore been able to respond across-the-board to new educa
tional needs as they have arisen during the past ten years.
hardly an area of federal concern for education, as expressed in recent or
proposed legislation, in which you will not find Title III pilot projects
This is true in such fields as career education,
mental education, programs for the gifted and talented, education of the
handicapped, preschool education, ethnic studies, reading, and bilingual
If these resources of active, ongoing experience were effec
tively utilized, they could serve as a reservoir of tested expertise for
other federal education programs.
Another feature of the Title III legislation, and one about which I
have some personal knowledge, is the requirement that each state appoint an
advisory council as a prerequisite to receiving funds.
I have had the honor
of serving on the Colorado State Advisory Council, and I am well aware of
the value of this citizen participation in education decision-making.
state councils review the application proposals which are received by the
state education agency from local schools for Title III funds, they oversee
the projects during their operation, and they pass on continuation proposals. 4
In all these activities, the state council represents the view of the
community as to the value and contribution of the Title III project. I
consider the contribution made by state advisory councils to be one of
the most significant parts of Title III, and I urge that this concept be
protected in any future legislation.
Through the requirement that projects respond to identified learner
needs and that they subject themselves to continuing evaluation, Title III
is in the forefront of the new educational interest in accountability.
Title III is therefore in a leadership position in the management and
administration of education, as well as in teaching. Many states report
that the Title III administrative staff serves in a consultant capacity to
other divisions of the state education department which are incorporating
the concepts of evaluation and accountability into their programs.
In another--and one of the most difficult--areas of educational
practice, Title III is also in a position to exercise leadership and to
This is the area of dissemination, of getting good
ideas from one place or one teacher to another.
A Title III project normally receives federal funding for three years,
with the expectation that the local district will continue to support
successful programs with local resources.
The ultimate goal, however, is
to have good ideas and programs widely adopted and/or adapted.
states, the staffs of projects evaluated as being exemplary are asked to
develop statewide dissemination plans to provide other school districts
with training services and materials in order to replicate the projects.
In a number of states, the legislatures have provided specific funds for
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