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Forecasted elementary and secondary school enrollments and professional per
sonnel needed in the public schools of Pennsylvania for the school years 1958–59 through 1968–69, together with increases or decreases for the school years 1959–60 through 1963–64 and the school years 1964–65 through 1968-69
1 Projections for the number of teachers needed are based upon estimated enrollments and normal turnover.
NOTES.-(1) Information relative to enrollments and professional personnel are taken from the publication Bureau of Research, "The Enrollment Picture for the Decade Ahead,” Harrisburg, Pa., Department of Priblic Instruction, 1958, pp. 8–15.
(2) All forecasts are based upon tendency for larger proportions of school-age children to enroll in nonpublic schools.
Source: Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Department of Public Instruction, Bureau of Research, Harrisburg, Feb. 26, 1959,
Senator YARBOROUGH. Thank you, Dr. Boehm. We congratulate you on your very thorough knowledge of conditions in your State, as well as your fine presentation.
Dr. BOEHM. Thank you for this opportunity.
Senator YARBOROUGH. The next witness is Mr. Thomas D. Bailey, superintendent of public instruction for the State of Florida, Tallahassee, Fla.
STATEMENT OF THOMAS D. BAILEY, STATE SUPERINTENDENT OF
INSTRUCTION FOR THE STATE OF FLORIDA
Mr. BAILEY. Mr. Chairman and members of the committee, I am Thomas D. Bailey, state superintendent of public instruction for the State of Florida. In appearing before this subcommittee, 1 speak not as a representative of any group or organization, but as an individual chief State school officer faced with insurmountable problems in financing quality public education from financial resources that are currently available to State and local systems of my State.
From my experience as State superintendent of public instruction over the past 10 years and as a local school administrator before that, I believe that the State of Florida has reached the practical limits of educational improvement that are possible through State and local tax resources. From my position of educational leadership in the
. State of Florida, I am convinced that substantial Federal financial support for public elementary and secondary education is an absolute necessity if we are to provide the type of high quality education that the space age demands for our vigor and survival as a nation. Florida is proud of its growing population. For the past 3 years
3 Florida's population has jumped, on the average, over 5,000 persons each week. We are particularly proud of our growing school enrollment which has jumped some 50 percent over 5 years ago and which is expected to reach 1 million students in 1959–60.
In spite of excellent State and local financial support of public education in Florida, we have found it increasingly difficult to provide the funds that are necessary to educate the children of our State properly. This situation has grown so serious that in my judgment Florida cannot continue to provide its children with the necessary education that they must have to become contributing citizens of our Nation.
The problems of financing schools in my State are most acute in two large areas of expenditures: (a) funds to pay salaries sufficiently high to secure and retain enough competent teachers and (b) funds to construct adequate classrooms.
I would like to illustrate briefly some of the school finance problems that Florida is facing. We have a need for approximately 3,000 ad- ditional teachers per year just to take care of enrollment increases if we are to keep the size of our classes at an efficient level. At our minimum salary of $4,000 for teachers on permanent contract this would mean that we are incurring a need of about $12 million annually just to
the salaries of additional teachers needed to care for enrollment increases. I am sorry to say that we are not meeting this need.
Although in Florida we built an average of six and a half classrooms each day of last year, our shortage of classrooms was greater in the fall of 1958 than it was a year before. Dade County alone needs the equivalent of an eight-classroom school every Monday morning to keep pace with pupil increases.
Under one of its State aid programs for school construction, Florida has spent more than $100 million in the past 4 years. The 1957 session of the State legislature, realizing the critical need for additional school facilities, appropriated approximately $23 million for the biennium in another State aid program which allocated $200 for each pupil in average daily attendance over the ADA of the previous year, on condition that the counties would match the sum out of local funds. In addition to these State aid and local matching programs, many counties on their own have voted local bond issues to be supported by local property taxes. In spite of all these efforts, our chronic classroom shortage persists.
At the national level we hear much talk about no new taxes and balanced budgets. I understand fully the political appeal of such economy formulas, and, Mr. Chairman, I assure you that they have even stronger appeal in State politics. Our State legislators in Tallahassee are perplexed with the dilemma of how to meet the rising cost of educating our portion of the Nation's children without raising taxes. And frankly, Mr. Chairman, it cannot be done adequately even with substantial tax increases. It is only reasonable and right for the Congress and administration to face the hard fact that a great deal more money will have to be made available for the education of our Nation's children, even if it means raising Federal taxes.
The State legislators in Florida are having to face the hard fact that for the next biennium the increase required in the State's share of our minimum foundation program will be, we estimate, $38,669,000, or an increase of about 14 percent. This increase is necessary just to hold our present level of education. Furthermore, it does not include increased expenditures needed in our State's emergency school construction fund, junior college program, and similar school finance programs.
Recently I prepared for a Florida legislator, who was deeply concerned about the situation, the following estimates of increases in educational funds requested for 1959–61 over estimated expenditures for the current biennium. Total increase, all budgets.
$65, 249, 380 Available from trust funds..
16, 645, 942 Balance from general revenue
48, 603, 438 Of which the major items are: Minimum foundation program to counties--
$38, 668, 917 Minimum foundation program to junior colleges.
5, 530, 012 Textbooks for pupils--
3, 661, 493 Vocational rehabilitation for casework, out of general revenue---- 222, 380 Total_---
48, 082, 802 which is facing the legislature.
Mr. Chairman and members of the subcommittee, I do not have to tell you that such increases constitute a real and genuine crisis in school finance in my State. The outlook for additional tax increases for schools at either the State or local levels in Florida in the foreseeable. future is extremely dismal. Yet our growing numbers of children continue to need more classrooms and more and better teachers.
I am convinced that without substantial Federal financial support for teachers' salaries and school construction our public school program in Florida is in serious jeopardy. In my opinion, as State superintendent of schools, the Murray bill is well designed to provide funds for these two major purposes without in any way injuring our established State minimum foundation program for public education. If funds are made available under the Murray bill, on the basis of research, my State will quickly allocate these funds to local school units consistent with our school needs.
I would like to state clearly and emphatically to the members of this subcommittee that I see absolutely nothing in the Murray bill that would constitute or lead to Federal control over schools in Florida or
any other State. In my opinion, there is nothing in this bill except substantial Federal financial support to help educate the children of our Nation today who will be the citizens of our Nation tomorrow.
And, Mr. Chairman, may I add this statement, which is not included in the presentation ?
Senator YARBOROUGH. Without objection.
Mr. BAILEY. I have this morning heard Dr. Fuller emphasize the amendments which he has brought forth here, and I am constrained to believe that on the basis of the information that I heard and on the basis of the description or definition that he has given between "verify" and "certify," so to speak, I can see that those amendments, superficially, now, would do no injury to the real purpose and intent of the Murray bill if the committee in its wisdom saw fit to incorporate those changes.
I would say immediately that if in the wisdom of the committee the incorporation of those suggested changes would do injury to the purposes and the intent of the Murray bill as written, then I would support the bill as it is now written.
I want to make this further statement: that I believe that every child in America should have as his heritage an adequate educational opportunity. And I do not believe that any geographical area in this Nation of ours should be allowed to continue where it becomes an educational liability for a child to be born. And the only way that that condition can be eliminated is for substantial Federal support of children wherever they are in this Nation of ours.
And I urge the Congress to promptly enact the Murray bill.
Senator CLARK. Mr. Bailey, I think that is a splendid and indeed an eloquent statement of your point of view.
I wonder if you could help the committee rebut the argument which I am sure we will meet, that perhaps a growing State like Florida, which is acquiring not only many new people but a good deal of additional wealth and has become one of our prosperous States, can make a substantial additional effort at the local and State level to remedy its educational deficiencies, and need not, therefore, call on the Federal Government for help.
Mr. BAILEY. Well, Senator Clark, I think that that is naturally a very easy statement for people to make who do not know the real problems and do not actually have the facts before them.
Senator CLARK. I just hope it is not going to be made by one or both of your very distinguished Senators from Florida.
Mr. BAILEY. Well, I would certainly hope not, either. And I will promise to do what I can to be of help to them.
Senator CLARK. Of course, we have a sort of special situation in Pennsylvania, because we have all this unemployment, and we have right on the record the fact that we are going to have to raise $400 million in additional taxes in the next 2 years, and we have the fact that we have had to impose a very much heavier tax burden both at the local and State level since 1972. I wonder if you have had any similar situation in Florida.
Mr. BAILEY. I would say, Senator Clark, not to the degree you refer to in Pennsylvania, but certainly to some extent. When you stop to realize that more than 60 percent of all of our State revenue
from the general revenue fund now goes to education, you can begin to understand the problem of adequately financing our schools from State and local funds. Now this does not mean that the local units have not been responsive, too; they have continued their contributions. But at the local level I suppose it is pretty nearly true all over the Nation that tax resources are dependent upon property taxes. And I am more convinced every day I live that to condemn our children to adequate education supported by a property tax anywhere is to condemn them to second-rate education. I mean, I think we might as well face that fact realistically.
Senator Clark. Do you have any rough idea of the property tax rate in Dade County? Of course, I realize that is a hard question to answer, because
you have got to think in terms of whether your assessed valuation is anywhere near the market value, and you may have other complications; but is there any way in which we can get a figure in the record which might indicate the extent of your local effort and whether you have the same variation in Florida which we have in Pennsylvania between relatively wealthy school districts and relatively poorer ones?
Mr. BAILEY. Senator, I am sorry. I would not care to estimate that at the present time. But certainly in a general way I could say that,
a as you would reasonably expect, there is quite a difference in the taxable wealth in an area like Miami and many other parts of our State. And I would have to say, furthermore, that we have a State foundation program which has a heavy equalization formula in it. And we have, since 1947, as a matter of fact, taken the position that every child in our State, regardless of where he lives, should be guaranteed at least minimum financial support for his education.
Now in order to do that you have to tax wealth where it is and spend it on children where children are. And I think we have to do the same thing nationally.
But the fact remains, even with that, that we do not allow assessed valuations to enter too much into the formulas we devise for the allocating of State money. If we did, of course, as you understand, it would b? an inequity. But in Dade County, I would say we would provide for current operating expenses there possibly in the neighborhood of maybe 48 percent from State funds, where in other places in the State we would provide 90 percent of all the money they use.
So there is that variation.
Senator CLARK. Mr. Bailey, do you know the average annual salary for secondary teachers in Florida?
Mr. BAILEY. Well, Senator, the average I would say for secondary teachers in Florida today is approximately $5,000.
Senator YARBOROUGH. That would be $200 or $300 under the national average, then?
Mr. BAILEY. Yes. That is right. We are. We are below the national average for secondary school teachers, I am sure; even though we had substantial increases in the last session of the legislature, Senator, in teachers' salaries.
Senator YARBOROUGH. Have you had an opportunity to study the administration's bill, S. 1016?
Mr. BAILEY. No. I am sorry. I have not given it an analytical study.