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This question was asked of State directors of special education. Twelve responded that it would result in inequitable distribution. Three have a neutral response. One felt it would be equitable, and I would add that this individual has a very strong position politically in the State, in addition to being the director of special education. Senator Pell. That doesn't add

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to 50. Mr. BRADDOCK. We polled only 16. Senator Pell. Just a random sample? Mr. GEER. Yes. Senator PELL. Good. (The prepared statement of William C. Geer follows :)

STATEMENT OF

WILLIAM C. GEER

EXECUTIVE SECRETARY

THE COUNCIL FOR EXCEPTIONAL CHILDREN

TO THE

SUBCOMMITTEE ON EDUCATION

OF THE

COMMITTEE ON LABOR AND PUBLIC WELFARE

UNITED STATES SENATE

REGARDING S. 1669,

EDUCATION REVENUE SHARING ACT OF 1971

October 28, 1971

Additional Witness:

Mr. David Braddock, The Council for Exceptional Children Mr. Chairman, Members of the Subcommittee:

The Council for Exceptional Children, representing over

40,000 professionals involved in the education of the handi

capped, is delighted to have this opportunity to present our

statement regarding the "Education Revenue Sharing Act of

1971."

We are, however, saddened by the recent death of your

esteemed colleague and long-time advocate of programs for the

[blocks in formation]

are to be commended for including specific provisions for the

handicapped in the proposed legislation.

Such inclusion is in

consonance with the call of Commissioner Sidney Marland of the

Office of Education for full educational opportunity for the handicapped by 1980. Approaches which simplify administration and enhance the stimulative role of the federal government are

to be applauded.

The federal role in the education of the handicapped is

severely restricted by insufficient funding. Present support is $115 million, of which $37.5 million goes to the states for

modeļ programs.

Additional support is earmarked under specific

sub-parts of Title I and Title III of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act and under the Vocational Education Act. Com

bined federal support comes to about $215 million, which compares to $3 to $4 billion in state costs and amounts to only $26

per child for seven million handicapped children.

And still,

60 percent of these children do not receive the educational

services they need.

Senate Bill 1669 repeals and consolidates this legislation,

and, while it simplifies the administration of funds, it increases the likelihood that an inequitably small share of education monies will serve the handicapped. This should be of particular concern to this committee since it initiated the

earmarks in the aformentioned legislation.

Using the proposed formula in the Bill and applying it to a $3 billion total appropriation figure, only $171 million is provided for the education of handicapped children. This figure, which is a reduction of $44 million in earmarked fed

eral support, could further be reduced by 30 percent. Consequently, many of our members in leadership positions in state agencies have expressed anxiety that removing these earmarkings would jeopardize the movement of the handicapped child into the

mainstream of education.

Fewer children would be afforded

fewer services than they now receive.

In a poll conducted by our organization among our members, most respondents felt that the handicapped would lose the 30 percent discretionary allotment. Yet 70 percent of the state directors of special education polled indicated they could effectively spend increments from double to nine times present expenditures under the aid to states provision (Title VIB) of the Educa

tion of the Handicapped Act.

Title VIB of the Education of the Handicapped Act is basically an education revenue sharing provision. Its level of funding, although it has gradually increased to $35 million, indicates the unwillingness of this Administration and previous administrations to adequately fund it. Yet, education of the handicapped is cost beneficial. Costs of institutionalization often exceed $4000 per year and, like welfare costs, can be avoided for the vast majority of the handicapped by providing appropriate education.

The states use federal funds to stimulate local and state

support by demonstrating the effectiveness of new educational

programs and initiating programs with federal funds that are subsequently continued under state funding. Even with the

limited level of federal funding, Title VIB has achieved admir

able results.

Unfortunately, all we envision Senate Bill 1669

doing is reducing the level of federal support through a Title

VIB approach.

We are not opposed to the concept of education revenue

sharing.

We are opposed to any federal posture which provides

illusory program growth for the education of handicapped chil

dren.

Although we express no general disapproval of the concept

embodied in Senate Bill 1669, we implore recognition of two

facts:

1.

Handicapped children are a minority in education, and programs of substance have not emerged until legislative statutes specified their existence.

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