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This means that the number of additional classrooms required to meet the growth in enrollments will be smaller than in recent years. These figures leave no doubt that the peak period of need for additional elementary and secondary school classroom capacity is already behind us and that the need for additional classrooms will be declining in the future, at least through 1970. (3) The number of additional classrooms needed in public elementary and seo
ondary schools has been decreasing steadily during the past 6 years The U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare has prepared tabulations showing the number of additional classrooms reported to be needed in each State. These tabulations, which are the most reliable estimates available, demonstrate clearly that the number of additional classrooms needed in public ele mentary and secondary schools has been decreasing steadily during the past 6 years :
In 1952 it was estimated that 312,000 additional classrooms were needed.
In 1956 it was estimated that 159,000 additional classrooms were needed (80,000 to accommodate excess enrollment and 79,000 to replace unsatisfactory facilities).
In 1957 it was estimated that only 140,400 additional classrooms were needed (63,200 to accommodate excess enrollment and 77,200 to replace unsatisfactory facilities).
Thus, in the 5-year period from 1952 to 1957 the estimated number of needed classrooms (to accommodate excess enrollment and to replace unsatisfactory facilities) was cut from 312,000 to 140,400. Particularly important is the fact that the estimated number of classrooms needed to accommodate excess enrollment was reduced to 63,200 in the fall of 1957.
The U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare estimated, based on State reports, that 68,600 classrooms were completed during the school year 1956–57 ; that 71,600 classrooms were completed during the school year 1957-58 (this exceeded the advance estimate of the number that would be completed during that school year); and that over 68,000 additional classrooms are scheduled for completion during the 1958–59 school year. Some of these additional classrooms are necessary to keep abreast of increased enrollment, but many of these additional classrooms are rapidly reducing the shortage of needed classrooms.
The tabulation by the U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare for the fall of 1958 estimated that 140,500 additional classrooms were still needed at that time (65,300 to accommodate excess enrollment, 75,200 to replace unsatisfactory facilities) ; but some rather strange figures in these estimates suggest the possibility that some estimates of the number of classrooms needed may have been exaggerated to create an apparent need for Federal aid.
Comparing the figures reported for one State in 1956 and 1958, the total number of pupils enrolled in public elementary and secondary schools increased 148,190; but the number of classrooms available increased 9,375, so that during the 2-year period a new classroom was built for about every 15 pupils in increased enrollment. However, in 1956 the report estimated that the State needed only 3,300 additional classrooms (2.250 to accommodate excess enrollment and 1,050 to replace unsatisfactory facilities), while in 1958 the report estimated that the State needed over 11,100 additional classrooms (over 6,000 to accommodate excess enrollment and over 5,100 to replace “unsatisfactory” facilities). Something is inconsistent when, despite the construction of classrooms at a rate exceeding the increased pupil enrollment, the reported additional classrooms needed increased from 3.300 in 1956 to over 11.100 in 1958, even after observing that over 4.000 classrooms apparently suddenly became "unsatisfactory" during the period from 1956 to 1958.
Similarly, in another State the number of additional classrooms needed to replace "unsatisfactory” facilities reportedly increased from 1.760 in 1956 to 10 037 in 1958. so that over 8.000 classronms apparently suddenly became "unsatisfactory" during the period between 1956 and 1958.
The needed classrooms are rapidly being provided without Federal aid. Furthermore, the continued high volume of sales of school bonds (summarized above) during 1958 assures that large numbers of additional classrooms will be constructed during the next several years.
The great success with which the needed classrooms rapidly are being pro vided without Federal aid, the decreasing rate of growth in public school enrollment, and the large classroom construction programs presently underway and financed for the next several years (demonstrated by record sales of school bonds and approval of a high percentage of school bonds at recent bond elections) lead us to conclude that State and local educational agencies can and will provide the needed classrooms without Federal aid.
School donds sold during 1958 to finance construction of public elementary and
15 184 21
2, 868,000 16, 296, 000
45, 000 342, 938,000 24, 260, 000 78, 214,000 30, 045, 000 33, 046, 000 13, 334, 000
4,030, 000 101, 953,000 35, 205, 000 22, 244, 000 20, 970, 000 18, 193, 000 62, 803, 000
2, 110,000 63,066,000 52, 946.000 121, 431, 000 54, 661, 000 36, 288, 000 39, 698, 000 5,731, 000 8,004,000
2, 314, 458, 000
STATEMENT BY LOUISE STITT, VICE CHAIRMAN, BOARD OF DIRECTORS, NATIONAL
CONSUMERS LEAGUE Your committee has heard much expert testimony showing that the pheno menal rate of advancement in public education in Russia provides a serious threat to our national security and a challenge to us all to take immediate steps to raise the standard of education for every child and youth in America.
We in the National Consumers League agree that the need to meet Russian competition in education is urgent, but we also believe that, were there no Russia, the fate of our democracy would still depend on the quality and extent of education we provide our young people, and we are convinced that the educational system of the United States today is inferior to that which the Nation needs and can afford. The success of self-government is determined by the character of de cisions made by the majority of the people day by day. We all suffer from the ignorance and indifference of the few. If we are to produce adults capable and willing to bear their share of the responsibility necessary to build and maintain a free society, training to that end must begin the first day a child enters school. He must receive the education and guidance that will develop to the full his potential capabilities and talents. We as a Nation can be satisfied with nothing less.
But abundant evidence has been presented this committee to show that we have neither the quantity nor quality of teachers nor the physical school facilities necessary to provide for all our children the standard of education our times require. We will not repeat the testimony presented to you by experts that demonstrates the financial inability of most of our local school districts to raise tax funds sufficient to pay qualified teachers and to erect appropriate school buildings. From the evidence presented, the conclusion is inescapable that if
we are to meet the existing crisis, Federal financial aid to our public schools is imperative. For this reason, the National Consumers League supports the Murray bill (S. 2) believing, after studying other proposals, that this bill more nearly than others will meet the financial requirements of our schools.
Although we support the entire bill, we should like to call your special attention to one section of S. 2, which has singular interest for members of the National Consumers League and for many other groups and individuals concerned with the welfare of children. Section 6(2) of the bill provides that a State education agency which desires to use a portion of its Federal allotment for teachers' salaries shall distribute three-fourths of that portion among the school districts of the State in the same proportion that the number of teachers in those districts bears to the total number of teachers in the State. The basis on which the fourth share of the allotment for teachers' salaries is distributed is left to the discretion of the individual States.
The opportunity this provision offers States to supply much needed educational services to children of large numbers of migratory farm workers employed within their borders each year has significant possibilities, it seems to us. These children are truly the neglected children of our land. The President's Commission on Migratory Labor in 1951 said, “They are children of misfortune. They are the rejects of those sectors of agriculture and of other industries undergoing change * * *
Migratory farm laborers move restlessly over the face of the land * * *. They pass through community after community, but they neither claim the community as home nor does the community claim them * * * The public acknowledges the existence of migrants, yet declines to accept them as full members of the community. As crops ripen, farmers anxiously await their coming; as the harvest closes, the community, with equal anxiety, awaits their going.”
If we are concerned about the kind of future citizens the children of today may become, then these migrant children deserve our gravest attention. Nobody knows how many there are. The United States Office of Education has estimated “that every year as least 600,000 children are being denied the privileges of a public school education simply because they are always on the move." They have the lowest educational attainment of any group in the Nation and constitute the largest single source of illiterates.
An Arizona report states, “most migrant children entering classes were retarded in achievement up to 50 percent in comparison with their age level.” According to a report from Colorado, “82 percent of all migrant school-age children were retarded from 1 to 8 years. Practically all children 11 years of age and over were retarded 3 years of more.” “Thirty-five percent of the children of school age had left school or had never been in school.” The education subcommittee of the Governor's committee on migrant labor of my own State of Ohio found in the fall of 1957 that more than one-half of the 728 children of Texas migrants enrolled in northern Ohio schools, while their parents harvested the crops, were retarded, and half of these were retarded by two years or more.
Facts of this kind could be multiplied many times, but they would only repeat the story that children of migrant farmers are deprived of the educational opportunities they so desperately need. These needs are not new nor have they recently been discovered. Private citizens and organizations have been working with this problem for over 30 years. Experimental schools supported by private funds have been organized in nearly every State in which migrant farmers work.
The National Consumers League and our State leagues have done much in this area. For two summers, 1957 and 1958, the National Consumers Committee for Research of Education, Inc. financed experiments in two Wisconsin counties. The work was carried on in cooperation with the Agriculture Extension Service of the University of Wisconsin. Classes were organized for mothers and recreational programs provided for children. Even the farm owners, who at the opening of the project were quite skeptical, admitted at the close of the season that the experiment had been a great success.
The Elizabeth S. Magee Foundation for Education and Research, an off-shoot of the Consumers League of Ohio
carried on an exceedingly successful school for migrant children last summer. This project was conducted in cooperation with the State Department of Education, the Ottawa County Board of Education and the United Church Women of Ohio. At the end of the summer, one of the teachers described the procedure as follows:
"These first summer sessions have been a combination of orientation and education. We have taught reading, writing and arithmetic, but we have also tried to give the children a variety of experience.
""We've had singing, painting and modeling activities, and we had a number of specialists come to work with the children” * *
"All of the children will be graded and receive report cards * * *. The report card will serve chiefly as a basis of information for the teachers in other schools these children may attend and help in class placement."
The hope of those planning and financing these projects is always that when the value of such experiments, not only to the children but to the whole community, is demonstrated, local authorities will take them over and make them part of their regular school systems. But this seldom happens. In the spring of 1956, after several years of private experimenting with summer schools for migrants, the New York legislature did appropriate funds for two schools. However, in 1958 after the schools had operated with great success for two years, a bill to appropriate funds to make the program permanent was cut from $30,000 to $10,000. Appreciative as a community may be of the work that has been done, the reason for letting the projects drop is always the same. Lack of funds sufficient to maintain adequate schools for the children of permanent citizens makes provision for migrant children impossible. There can be little doubt, whatever the responsibility of the Federal Government is for aiding all public education, that it has a clear-cut obligation for the education of these migrant children who cross and recross State lines many timese during a school year.
This brings us back to section 6(2) of S. 2. Our friends in the Department of Rural Education of the National Association of Education assure us that the unassigned one-fourth of the Federal allotment for teachers' salaries may be used in any way the state agency decides is proper, such as additional teachers for that part of the school year when migrants are in the community; for paying teachers for special remedial classes for these and other children who may need special programs; or in a number of other ways.
Quite properly, S. 2 does not stipulate that a State shall use funds for these or any other programs. It does, however, give the States an opportunity to determine their own special needs and designates the portion of the Federal allotment which may be used to finance the remedies.
This, in our opinion, is the most constructive proposal for financing education for migrant children contained in any current education bill. For this reason and others presented in this statement, the National Consumers League earnestly hopes that the subcommittee on education will give the Murray bill its favorable consideration, and that the Senate Committee on Labor and Public Welfare will report it to the Senate with recommendations for passage.
NATIONAL CHILD LABOR COMMITTEE,
New York, N.Y., March 11, 1959. Hon. JAMES E. MURRAY, Chairman, Subcommittee on Education, Senate Committee on Labor and Public
Welfare, Senate Office Building, Washington, D.O. DEAR SENATOR MURRAY: You are to be commended for your sponsorship of legislation that will provide Federal aid for school construction and for teachers' salaries. The National Child Labor Committee has long recognized that States and local communities need assistance in providing adequate education for all our children. In the light of critical needs for such help now, we strongly endorse the Murray-Metcalf education bill (S. 2, H.R. 22).
NCLC is particularly interested in your bill because it will strengthen educational opportunities for the children of migratory farm workers. These children ---there are probably as many as 100,000 of them of school age are the most deprived educationally of any of our children, according to the U.S. Office of Education. One of the main reasons for this is the widespread lack of funds to provide schooling for them in local school districts where they live, both in their "home base" States and in States "up to road.”
Your bill will relieve this lack of funds and will help us stop short-changing 'these youths at a time when our Nation can ill-afford manpower waste.
I would like you to include a copy of this letter in the record of hearings being conducted by your subcommittee. Respectfully,
ELI E. COHEN, Executive Secretary.
NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF SOCIAL WORKERS,
SANTA CLARA CHAPTER,
San Jose, Calif., March 8, 1959. Hon. JAMES E. MURRAY, Chairman, Subcommittee on Education, Senate Committee on Labor and Public Welfare.
DEAB SENATOR MURRAY: The Santa Clara Chapter, National Association of Social Workers, is the professional organization of social workers whose members are
ged in governmental and private family and child care agencies, medical and psychiatric clinics and hospitals. We see constant evidence, even in a more favored State (from an income standpoint) like California, of the inability of our local and State government to keep up with the growth in our child population. We heartily approve of both sections 5 and 6 of S. 2.
Our national platform statement endorses Federal aid to education, based upon relative educational need, fiscal capacity, and the universal availability of such education to all qualified applicants.
We are very pleased with the provision in your bill allowing the State agency to use one-quarter of the Federal allotment in any way that the agency considers proper. Santa Clara County has an extremely large number of migrant agricultural workers, the children of whom have the lowest educational attainments of any group in the Nation. Even in this wealthy State the local school funds are to inadequate to assume this additional financial burden. Therefore it is essential that some Federal financial aid be provided in this area.
We hope very much that the Murray-Metcalf education bills will be enacted into law. We feel very strongly that since all States are faced with large growth of child population, funds sufficient should be appropriated in a way that will encourage higher income States to do a better job of providing classrooms for all children and to raise the level for facilities in the lower income States. This will undoubtedly cost more than the proposals in the administration bills but it would be an investment in the future of America that is certainly worthwhile.
We are grateful for this opportunity to state our views on this important subject. Yours very truly,
(Mrs.) LEAH H. LACHENBRUCH, Legislative Chairman, Santa Clara Chapter, National Association of Social
Workers, Menlo Park, Calif.
NATIONAL COUNCIL OF JEWISH WOMEN, INC.,
New York N.Y., March 12, 1959. Senator JAMES E. MURRAY, Chairman, Subcommittee on Education, Senate Committee on Labor and Public
Welfare, Senate Office Building, Washington, D.C. DEAR SENATOR MURRAY: Once again, the National Council of Jewish Women would like to express its continuing grave concern about the inadequacies and shortages in the Nation's educational facilities. We urge immediate congressional action to provide critically needed Federal help for improved schooling for America's children.
At the NCJW national biennial convention, which met in Los Angeles 2 weeks ago, delegates representing our nationwide membership of 110,000 women took a close look at the urgent problems facing our youth today, and called for "no further delay in taking long overdue action on education, juvenile delinquency, recreation and job training." To help meet school and teacher shortageswhich the council's local sections have found in recent surveys of community needs in every part of the country—the convention called for "immediate passage of Federal legislation to grant funds to the States for school construction and for teachers' salaries.
In response to the current Government economy drive, the assembled representatives of 240 council sections across the Nation declared : "The drive to balance the budget at all costs is a threat to the objectives of the United States. * * * Recognizing that sound fiscal policies are essential, we believe that they must encompass the services required for the Nation's strength and well-being. As citizens, we are willing to make whatever sacrifices are required for the future of our country.”