Serial No. 106-84


Printed for the use of the Committee on Education

and the Workforce

Subcommittee on Early Childhood, Youth and Families

Hearing on "Title VI - Providing Flexibility For Innovative Education"

Wednesday, February 9, 2000

2175 Rayburn House Office Building

Washington, D.C.





Good Morning. I am Allison Kaplan, the coordinator of the School Library Media Specialist Program at the University of Delaware. I am pleased to be able to testify before you this morning on the benefits of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act Title VI on behalf of the American Association of School Librarians and the American Library Association. *








Subcommittee on Early Childhood, Youth and Families

Hearing on "Title VI - Providing Flexibility For Innovative Education"

Wednesday, February 9, 2000

2175 Rayburn House Office Building

Washington, D.C.



The subcommittee met, pursuant to notice, at 10:37 a.m., in Room 2175, Rayburn House Office Building, Hon. Michael N. Castle, Chairman of the Subcommittee, presiding.

Present: Representatives Castle, Petri, Roukema, Ballenger, Schaffer, Hilleary, Kildee, Roemer, Scott, Woolsey, Romero-Barcelo, McCarthy, Ford, and Wu.

Staff present: Pam Davidson, Legislative Assistant; Victor Klatt, Education Policy Coordinator; Patrick Lyden, Professional Staff Member; Deborah Samantar, Office Manager; Rich Stombres, Professional Staff Member; Holli Traud, Staff Assistant; June L. Harris, Education Coordinator; Alex Nock, Legislative Associate; Roxanna Folescu, Staff Assistant; Mark Zuckerman, Minority Counsel; Cedric Hendricks; Marshall Grigsby.

Chairman Castle. [presiding] Good morning, ladies and gentlemen. The Subcommittee on Early Childhood, Youth & Families will come to order. We welcome those who are here today.

We are holding this hearing to hear testimony on providing flexibility for innovative education under Title VI of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act.

Under committee rule 12-B, opening statements are limited to the chairman and the ranking minority member of the subcommittee, Mr. Kildee of Michigan, immediately to my right. This will allow us to hear from our witnesses sooner and to help members keep to their schedules. Therefore, if other members have opening statements, they may be included in the hearing record.

With that, I ask unanimous consent for the hearing record to remain open for 14 days to allow members' statements, witnesses' written testimony, and other material to be submitted for the record, meaning all of your statements will be submitted for the record as well. Without objection, so ordered.

Let me welcome our witnesses, and let me explain one thing today before I go forward, and that is that today is sort of a unique today. Congress is not actually in session. That will probably impact the attendance at this hearing somewhat. Carl Albert, a former Speaker of the House, passed away, and many members are attending his funeral in Oklahoma. Since this hearing has been rescheduled several times, we decided to go ahead with it or none of you would ever speak to us again. Therefore, we are going to move ahead today with this hearing.

The process hear is that each of you will have five minutes to testify, which means you probably won't want to read your whole statement; in fact, we would prefer it if you didn't. We would rather just talk to you. But you have little machines there in front of you that, if you are wondering what they were, that will show a green light for four minutes, a yellow light for one minute, and then a red light to show you that five minutes has expired.

Then, hopefully, when the yellow light comes on, you will start to think about summarizing, and when the red light comes on, you will sort of think about finishing. That will allow all of us to ask you questions, which we do in five-minute increments. All that adds up to a little more time than you might think. We would like, if at all possible, to give all members the opportunity to ask questions.

So, that is the basics of hearing logistics. Let me talk a little about the hearing, and we obviously would like to welcome everybody here to what is another hearing in a continuum to learn more about the Elementary and Secondary Education Act.

Today, we will review Title VI, the Innovative Education Program Strategies Block Grant, from national, state, local and private school perspectives. Title VI is the only K-12 education block grant in the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. By allowing recipients to use its funds to benefit any and all student populations in any and all schools, Title VI enables state and local educational agencies to implement promising educational reform programs and provides a continuing source of innovation for our students.

These funds are allocated from the Department of Education to state educational agencies based on the population of children age 5 - 17. At the state level, Title VI funds are used to provide technical assistance, award direct grants to local educational agencies, and carry out statewide reform efforts.

At the local level, school districts are given tremendous flexibility to, among other things, use Title VI funds to purchase technology related to the implementation of school-based reform programs, support programs to combat literacy, provide for the educational needs of gifted and talented children, and support the acquisition and use of library services and materials.

In my home State of Delaware, Title VI funds have been used in several promising ways in both the public and private non-profit schools. For instance, the Colonial School District developed a teacher learning center that provides professional development to all levels of staff in the district. The Milford School District uses Title VI funds to help students gain greater proficiency with education technology.

Title VI is the ``innovation money'' needed to help schools implement broad-based accountability plans that are so important to education reform. In addition, there is broad support for this program, as demonstrated by our witnesses here this morning.

Still, the administration requests zero funds for the Title VI program, because they believe, and I am quoting from they stated, ``The program is not well designed to support the kinds of State and local efforts most likely to result in real improvements in teaching and learning.'' According to the fiscal year 2000 budget plan, evaluations of the program concluded that ``The overall purpose of the program, supporting school reform, was not achieved because of the broad, vague, and overlapping nature of the activities eligible for funding.''

However, a recent study by the Title VI National Steering Committee found that Title VI funding has been effective in enabling state and local educational agencies to implement promising education reform programs. In sum, they concluded that 82 percent of the districts that used Title VI funds to increase scores on norm-referenced tests reported improved scores, and 79 percent of the districts that used Title VI funds to increase scores on criterion-referenced tests reported improved scores.

Simply, Title VI enables states and localities to implement promising educational reforms without the usual restrictions and red-tape, and it is working. I am anxious to hear from our expert panel of witnesses, but at this time, I will yield, as is customary, to the ranking member for any statement he may wish to make, Mr. Kildee.

See Appendix A for the Written Statement of the Honorable Michael Castle


Mr. Kildee. Thank you, Mr. Chairman, and good morning. I am pleased to join my colleagues at this hearing today.

I would like to acknowledge the presence of some Palestinian legislators in our audience. We welcome you here this morning.

My Chief of Staff is Palestinian-American, and I am very proud to have him as my Chief of Staff. I welcome you here this morning, salaam malecam, malecama salaam.

Also, I would like to acknowledge the presence of Sister Suzanne Bellenoit, SSJ, Sister of Saint Joseph. For over 16 years of my life, 12 years in elementary and secondary school and four years in a seminary, Sisters of Saint Joseph helped in my formation. So, I have great concern and care for the Sisters of Saint Joseph and welcome you here this morning, Sister.

Sister Bellenoit. Thank you, sir.

Mr. Kildee. Title VI of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, once referred to as Chapter 2, is the source of funding that many public and private schools utilize to respond to local needs, and I think members on both sides of the aisle ensure that children in both public and private schools benefit from these programs.

Title VI funds are used to acquire technology, provide teacher training, purchase instructional materials, and support and strengthen school library programs. I am sure that we will hear today from all of you about unique projects that Title VI funds have made possible.

While states allocate these funds to school districts mainly on the basis of population, they are required to adjust their per-pupil allocations based upon concentrations of poverty and sparsely populated areas. I'm pleased to say that my home State of Michigan has made one of the strongest efforts to target Title VI funds to the areas most in need.

This program's broad focus means that very few federal requirements are imposed. But that can lead to a lack of understanding of the program's mission and objective. One only needs to recall the consequences of the 1981 consolidation of numerous educational programs into the Chapter 2 program, to see the effect of intentionally removing accountability from federal education programs.

But this is a good program. Title VI is a program where we find a great deal of support. We want to explore ways to make Title VI more accountable and result-oriented, and we look forward to hearing your testimony this morning.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

Chairman Castle. Thank you very much, Dale.

I will now briefly, and I stress the word ``briefly,'' because I will not be able to do justice to your bios. I will briefly introduce all of you, and then we will go back to Dr. Martin and start with her testimony.

Dr. Earin Martin has been with the Texas Education Agency since 1987. She is currently the senior director of Contracts and Grants Administration and has served as a State Title VI coordinator since 1990. In addition, she served as the chairperson for the Title XI National Steering Committee from 1996 to 1998. Dr. Martin will testify on a national perspective and a broad overview of issues associated with Title VI.


Mrs. Valerie Woodruff is the acting Secretary of Education for the Delaware Department of Education. For over 30 years, she has been involved in the field of education. Mr. Woodruff has experience as a teacher, a guidance counselor, assistant principal, principal, and associate secretary. Her involvement in the field of education is exemplary and unfortunately too extensive to detail. She will testify on a state perspective and broad overview of issues associated with Title VI.

Mrs. Allison Kaplan is a coordinator for the School Library Media Specialist Program at the School of Education at the University of Delaware. She currently serves on the Board of Directors for the International Association of School Librarianship, the American Association of School Librarians and is liaison for Professional Development for the Delaware School Library Media Association. Mrs. Kaplan will testify on a local perspective of Title VI and how public school libraries will benefit from the program.

Sister Suzanne Bellenoit is assistant superintendent for Government Programs at the Archdiocese of Newark in Newark, New Jersey. She is also a member of the Federal Assistance Advisory Commission of the United States Catholic Conference. Sister Bellenoit will testify on the various ways that private schools benefit from Title VI funding.

I take some pride in having perhaps the highest percentage of Delaware representation ever to testify before Congress here today, and being 50 percent of this panel, I hope the other members will excuse my civic pride in that, but these are two wonderful Delawareans that we have here, but we also, of course, welcome, just as equally, Dr. Martin and Sister Bellenoit, too, who are also outstanding witnesses.

As I explained earlier, we will just go in order from Dr. Martin on down to Sister Bellenoit. You will each have five minutes uninterrupted, and when you are all done, then we will each take five minutes to ask questions and obtain your answers.

Let me just say one other thing: Sometimes when people come here, some members aren't here. What you have submitted in terms of statements is distributed amongst all of our offices and analyzed and looked over very carefully by our staff, so it has an importance beyond even what happens here. So, that is something I think it is important to understand. We treat these hearings seriously; it helps formulate the policies that we follow later on, and that is why we appreciate all of you being here.

With that said, Dr. Martin, the floor is yours.



Ms. Martin. Thank you. It is my pleasure to be here this morning to discuss Title VI from a national perspective on behalf of the Title VI National Steering Committee.

I would like to address three major points, the first of that being that the Title VI statute, as currently written, provides for services that no other formula education program can provide. Everyone is familiar with the rhetoric about the flexibility of Title VI, and it is important not to forget that.

It is only the formula entitlement program that allows recipients to benefit, any and all student populations in any and all schools. It is the only formula education program that allows a school to serve the entire range of a student population, from the gifted and talented, to the students at risk, to the limited English-proficient students, to the students with disabilities.

It is the only formula education program that may service the ``slightly below average`` child, the child that doesn't qualify for Title I, the child that maybe is between failing and satisfactory, the child that often falls between the cracks of the educational system. It is often that the child that parents must resort to other means to assist the child, such as private schools or additional tutoring, and those kinds of things.

Title VI is the only formula program that will allow the nation to meets its educational goals, to allow all students to achieve to high standards, all students to have access to technology, all students to be able to read by the end of the third grade, all schools to implement comprehensive reform initiatives, because all the other programs are specifically targeted for specific purposes or may be even competitive whereby all schools aren't allowed to participate.

Title VI and its predecessor, Chapter 2, were ahead of its time with the notion of flexibility and local decision-making, and Congress was wise to retain that flexibility with the reauthorization of Title VI, recognizing that it is critical in meeting the needs of all students on any campus.

Point number two is that based on a survey recently conducted that Mr. Castle mentioned, all states were required to conduct an evaluation of effectiveness of Title VI in the fiscal year 1998. Forty-four states participated in a voluntary national project whereby states sent surveys to districts across the nation. The results of that survey are published in the National Summary of the Evaluation of Effectiveness, which the Executive Summary is attached to the testimony.

The results of that survey shows that Title VI does provide flexibility to meet local needs; it does promote reform; it does provide funding for critical activities, and it does contribute toward the improvement of student performance.

Some specific examples of that are that where districts used Title VI funds to address student attendance, attendance increased, drop-out rates decreased, suspension and expulsion rates improved, SAT scores and ACT scores improved, and as you mentioned, Mr. Castle, norm-referenced test scores and criterion-references test scores improved. In Texas alone 98 percent of the districts that use Title VI to impact our top scores, our criterion-referenced tests. Title VI had an impact on improving those scores.

The study also evidenced that professional development improved instructional services in schools for students. There were continued pleas for increased funding and retaining the flexibility to meet the local needs with the reauthorization of Title VI.

The third major point is obviously, given all this information, that the elimination of Title VI would severely impact the ability of schools and districts to continue and complete their reform initiatives. You may recall from the former reauthorization of the administration's proposal, the Improving America's Schools Act, that the administration eliminated the former Chapter 2. Yet the notion of that Improving America's Schools Act was the notion that all children would reach high standards and all teachers would teach the high standards.

But in spite of the fact that the President called for the elimination of Chapter 2, Congress, in its wisdom, realigned Chapter 2 to focus more on reform through Title VI and retained it. Once again, the Clinton Administration's proposal is calling to eliminate Chapter 2 but yet retain the same foci for enabling all students to achieve the high standards and all teachers to teach the high standards. But how can a district or a school be expected to do that in the absence of a program like Title VI?

The current administration continues to zero it out year after year in the budget. Most recently, with the recision that the Department of Education was required to make among education programs, Title VI took the most serious cut of all the education programs in their effort to eliminate it.

In summary, Title VI is the only program in which every student in every school in every district in every state can benefit from. Only with a program like Title VI with sufficient appropriations can the districts and states be provided with resources to enable all students to achieve to those high standards that are expected.

See Appendix B for the Written Testimony of Dr. Earin Martin



Chairman Castle. Well, thank you very much, Dr. Martin; we appreciate your testimony.

Dr. Martin. Thank you.

Chairman Castle. I appreciate your trying your best to stay within the five minutes, which is always difficult, because I know you have a lot more you could tell us, and hopefully that will come out when we have a questions and answers.

Secretary Woodruff is next.



Mrs. Woodruff. Chairman Castle, members of the Subcommittee on Early Childhood, Youth & Families, good morning. I very much appreciate the opportunity to be here today to address your very important deliberations regarding the reauthorization of ESEA, Title VI.

As you are aware, and as Dr. Martin has indicated, Title VI has served as a key discretionary funding component to school districts throughout the nation, and in Delaware this is absolutely the case. Delaware's Title VI allocation for last school year, over $1.7 million, benefited thousands of public and private school children and provided staff development for over 3,000 public and private school educators. In Delaware, Title VI funds, together with Goals 2000, Title I, Eisenhower professional development, and the federal technology programs, have been instrumental in supporting Governor Carper's educational reform initiatives that began when Mr. Castle was our governor, I might add, in local districts and schools across the state.

Individual districts enjoy the flexibility that is provided by Title VI and they have been targeted in four major areas in Delaware. One is library initiatives, which I know Mrs. Kaplan is going to talk about in a bit, school climate and discipline programs, technology acquisitions, and innovative programs aimed at targeting and improving student achievement.

Our Department of Education has also been able to expand and strengthen our technical support to districts in terms of professional development services to local teachers and school leaders. Our innovative programs have impacted the implementation of standards, have resulted in a modest but definite increase in student achievement at this moment. Title VI programs have increased student access to standards-based library services which we believe are important and must be integral to the implementation of standards-based reform.

A teacher learning center, which Mr. Castle referenced a moment ago, provides an array of professional development resources and services to teachers, administrators, and instructional staff in one of our largest districts. Data collected from that teacher resource center shows that classroom instruction is improving and as a result of the changes in improvements in classroom instruction that student achievement is also benefiting.

Title VI is currently viewed by our local districts as a source of revenue that can be targeted to address the highest priority educational needs that are not met by other programs. In Delaware, we have a consolidated application process that requires districts to target student achievement and to then address their goals by utilizing various components of funding.

A couple of examples, Mr. Castle mentioned in Milford, the Title VI funds have been used to provide a mechanism for their students to achieve the computer proficiency standards that are required by State Board of Education regulation. In Brandywine School District, Title VI provides a library paraprofessional in every school. In the Colonial School District, Title VI funds have been used to establish a teacher professional development center that has become a model for professional development across our state.

In addition to the 85 percent of Title VI funding that is allocated directly to local school districts, the remaining 15 percent that is available to us at the state level is vitally important to Delaware’s educational reform. Our calls from school districts for assistance have increased significantly over the last several years, and very often the concern is that we do not have enough funding to provide the support that our local districts need.

We have used these funds in a number of ways that I think are very innovative. The first is we really want to try to train school principals, assistant principals and teachers to be better educational leaders. We have supported the Delaware Center for Education Technology, which has wired all of our schools to help them provide professional development. We have also utilized the funds to support the development of a web-based system whereby our local school districts can apply for funds at the department, and we are trying to really develop a paperless system, if you will.

Title VI is indeed a unique and innovative funding stream that is without question making a difference in Delaware. We believe that it is important to maintain certain categorical funds, such as Title I and Title II, but we also believe that need that flexibility. I have often referred to Title VI money as glue money. It is the funding that we can use to attach one piece of funding to another.

I respectfully recommend the following for the Title VI reauthorization: Reauthorize and enhance the target programs such as ESEA Title I, Title II, and Title III, which is our technology literacy challenge, by maintaining a substantial, flexible funding stream in Title VI to bring high standards, new assessments, and improved instructional practice into classrooms. Secondly, maintain the state set-aside portion of funds available under Title VI to support statewide leadership and delivery of services to local districts and schools, which are of high quality, responsive to local needs, and efficiently use the economy of scale in specific state development and program improvement initiatives.

Thank you again for allowing me this opportunity; it has been my pleasure.

See Appendix C for the Written Testimony of Mrs. Valerie Woodruff


Chairman Castle. Thank you very much, Secretary Woodruff, and we will now go to Mrs. Kaplan.



Mrs. Kaplan. Thank you.


Good Morning. I am Allison Kaplan, the coordinator of the School Library Media Specialist Program at the University of Delaware. I am pleased to be able to testify before you this morning on the benefits of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act Title VI on behalf of the American Association of School Librarians and the American Library Association.

I would like to thank Members of the House of Representatives and many members of this committee, particularly Mr. Castle, for your continued support of the ESEA Title VI. On behalf of the American Library Association I would like to express our appreciation for your strong support in the recent budget battle, where the Department of Education reduced the program by $14.25 million, for a total of $81 million for fiscal year 2000.

I work with a lot of the school librarians in the State of Delaware, and I hear a variety of stories about Title VI funding. I would like to share just three examples with you this morning.

A librarian in the middle of the state depends heavily on Title VI funding to keep her collection current. She has a budget of $12,000 for a high school of over 1,400 students. That works out to about $8.60 for her to spend per student. Now, I would like you to think about that $8.60. When was the last time you bought a quality book for $8.60?

Add to that the fact that she also has to include in her library budget the expense of electronic resources, and the result is a deficient library, a library collection that is incapable of supporting the lifelong learners that are so urgently needed in our society today.

A librarian from the southern end of the state asked me to pass on this message to you. She said, ``The last time I received Title VI money was in October of 1997. I was budgeted $437.00 for a multicultural collection. Unfortunately, I did not receive any money in 1998-1999 or in 1999-2000. When I checked with the district office, I was told that that money had been spent elsewhere.'' She asks, ``Is that money specifically labeled for libraries or can it be used for something else? In your report please ask them to specifically label money for libraries or the districts will spend it, and we will never see it. Despite my efforts, the average publication age of my collection is 1973.''

Finally, from the northern part of our state and most populous, a librarian told me she hasn't seen Title VI money since the 1980's. She said that the regulations are too broad with too many choices as to where the money can be spent, and her collection has suffered for this. She says in spite of her beautiful row of 15 computers, her fiction collection is comprised of books published between 1950 and 1975.

Today, the school library media specialist is more than a dispenser of books. Our mission is to ensure that students and faculty are efficient and effective users of information. Our goal is the same as every other educator -- student achievement. In many urban areas with large school populations and rural school districts, school library collections are aging, out-of-date, and inaccurate. School libraries need help from Congress to bring those neglected school libraries up to standards. We all have high expectations for the achievement of our students, but it is not fair to have those expectations without giving the students the proper tools. It is not fair to have those expectations while making school libraries have to choose between technology and books.

Education reform leader, Dr. Theodore R. Sizer at Brown University said the way to develop, in his terms, the essential school is ``to plan a library and let its shadow shape the rest.'' Supporting the adequate funding of ESEA Title VI, targeted specifically for school libraries, will ensure that the shadow is one of a library with a current book collection, a professional trained certified staff, working technology, and free and open access to all information in whatever forms it may take.

We all have a big stake in ensuring that the next wave of workers can read, can understand what they read, can use technology, can make informed decisions, and can help their own children achieve to the fullest extent of their potential.

Representative Major Owens and 17 other House Members have introduced H.R. 3008, a bill that if passed and funded, would help provide dedicated funds for school library media resources. We strongly urge you to consider this legislative approach as you continue deliberating on the ESEA authorization. If you choose to reauthorize Title VI as a block grant, we ask that you narrow its focus to provide more funds for school libraries.

As an educator and a parent, I have experienced directly the wonder and excitement that occurs in a good school library when a student connects with reading materials that inspire, interest, inform, or just plain entertain.

I have to tell you that I was reading to some children in a classroom the other day, and it is a school for children with learning disabilities, and there is one little girl, Elizabeth. She comes down every week and sits in the corner sucking her thumb, listening to the stories. She never ever checks out a book, and I read to her, we read some stories yesterday, and she stopped sucking her thumb, and when we were finished, she asked if she could check out that book. It was the first time in the whole year that she has ever taken any interest. I have high hopes that her interest will expand and help her to come out of her shell.

So, I ask you to imagine the satisfaction of providing a student, such as Elizabeth, with an entrance to a lifetime of education and the sustained joy of reading. Then imagine this student without that opportunity. It is not only that student who loses out; we all lose out. I thank you for your time.

See Appendix D for the Written Testimony of Mrs. Allison Kaplan

Chairman Castle. Thank you very much, Mrs. Kaplan.

Our final witness for today is Sister Bellenoit.



Sister Bellenoit. Good morning, Chairman Castle and members of the subcommittee.

My comments today will be based on my experiences with the Catholic schools of the Archdiocese of Newark located in the densely populated northeastern corner of New Jersey, that would include Bergen, Essex, Hudson, and Union Counties, and as a member of the Federal Assistance Advisory Commission.

The Advisory Commission gathers local practitioners from across the country to advise the United States Catholic Conference regarding the implementation of federal programs that have an effect on over 2.6 million students, over 150,000 professional staff, and millions of parents from over 8,200 catholic elementary and secondary schools across the country.

While I am specifically here today as a representative of the United States Catholic Conference, the Archdiocese of Newark, and the general catholic school community, I believe that my comments in support of the reauthorization and increased funding of Title VI also reflect the general position of other private and religious school administrators and staff, as well as many of our public school counterparts.

The Archdiocese of Newark enrolls over 60,000 pupils in its 180 Catholic elementary and secondary schools. All of our students benefit from numerous federally sponsored programs, including specifically, Title VI.

When ESEA was first passed and signed into law in 1965, the original Title II provided library resources, textbooks and instructional materials to improve the education of children enrolled in public and private and religious schools. Over time, in a number of reauthorizations, the program was expanded to include the concepts of educational innovation and improvement.

In 1981, when Congress consolidated 28 previously funded federal programs into one, it was designated as Chapter 2, more affectionately known by our principals and teachers as the block grant; they love it. The decision on how these funds were to be used were made locally based on identified local needs. In a very real sense, Chapter 2 was years ahead of its time in this approach.

In 1994, Congress rejected the Clinton Administration's attempt to eliminate Chapter 2 and designated the program as Title VI. A broad-based coalition of public, private and religious school groups worked as diligently then as we are working now to oppose the elimination of Title VI, as they worked for Chapter 2.

Title VI, as it currently exists, is also being suggested as putting aside 50 percent of its funding for competitive grants. To take 50 percent of the funding in Title VI and put it in the category of competitive grants would badly affect all of the smaller private schools in the country. It stands to reason that private schools that are generally smaller are much less likely to have on-staff professional grant writers who could compete with their larger public counterparts to gain that 50 percent which would be put over in competitive grants. We are definitely opposed to that movement. USCC and other public, private and religious school groups again oppose this proposal as basically bad education policy for all of our children and all of our schools.

As Chairman Castle described in his summary, Title VI supports a broad range of activities. My experience has convinced me that local discretion is essential to the process of identifying particular student needs and that Title VI consistently allows a generous amount of this needed flexibility within the targeted objective areas.

In the Archdiocese of Newark, Title VI funds have enabled many of our urban schools to pool their allocations to provide at risk students with the services of licensed school social workers. Obviously, the modest operating budgets of inner city parochial schools could never sustain the expense of these professional services. Without Title VI, the children of the poor would again be deprived of a necessary support system that enables them to become successful learners. Over the years, through Title VI, all of our schools have invested heavily in the improvement of their library services and materials, especially in software and reference materials that are tied to high academic standards. Smaller suburban schools form regional consortia to make more effective use of their funding to purchase science equipment, math manipulatives, art supplies and, again, library hardware.

Our recommendations are specifically that Title VI should be reauthorized. Its elimination would be a significant negative impact on student performance and teachers' ability to teach effectively. Section 6402, which refers to the participation of students and staff in private and religious schools, should be retained without change. We recommend that you retain the current program flexibility, that funding for Title VI should be increased, and to consider restoring the pre-1994 Chapter 2 State Level Advisory Committee in order to increase accountability through consultation, planning, development, support, implementation, and evaluation of the Title VI programs.

Thank you, Chairman Castle, for the opportunity to testify.

See Appendix E for the Written Testimony of Sister Suzanne Bellenoit


Chairman Castle. Thank you, Sister Bellenoit.

We appreciate the testimony from all of you. The time has now come for us to try to engage you in a little bit of conversation here. I will yield to myself first for my five-minute segment.

Let me just make a generalization, which is always a huge mistake usually when you are running one of the committees. But I think, frankly, that Title VI is supported by both political parties as represented on this committee and probably in the Congress of the United States, both the House and the Senate, at least by and large. There may be some that dissent from that notion. Perhaps the amount of money is not always appropriate.

The funding is there. It is hard to change funding, but we have the job before us of authorizing the ESEA and Title VI. That is going to happen this year at some point. I don't think there is any problem with the reauthorization, so we are really talking about fine-tuning the language.

Now, if I had to guess, and I don't know, but if you had Secretary Reilly and President Clinton testifying before us, that would be an interesting combination to have here, that they would probably be somewhat supportive as well. But having said that, we have heard from the Department of Education and from the White House. You may have noted in my opening comments, some somewhat negative comments. I want to ask this of Dr. Martin. The Department of Education said in their budget plan last year that the reviews of the old Chapter 2 program concluded that the overall purpose of the program supporting school reform was not achieved because of the broad, big, and overlapping activities eligible for funding. I did not hear that from all of you, but Mrs. Kaplan would like to see it more specialized towards libraries or some other program for libraries. But I believe that I heard support, basically, for Title VI as it is now.

So, Dr. Martin, who has sort of a broad perspective on this issues, do you believe that this is a case with Title VI as it is currently configured? That it is too broad or big? I would also like your comments on what Mrs. Kaplan said as well. She would like Title VI to be more targeted towards libraries. She said Representative Major Owens has introduced a bill that would permit libraries to be considered separately, which you may or may not support, and mention any comments about this so we can consider all options as we decide upon how to do this reauthorization?

Dr. Martin. With regard to the first question about the broad perspective of Title VI, I think we mentioned before, or somebody mentioned before, that that has both its advantages and disadvantages. It is advantages certainly for the district and being able to determine how to meet the local needs. The disadvantage is that it does become so broad in many instances that it is hard to figure out in some cases exactly what is happening with it and the difference that is making, the impact that it is having.

I think that the other Title VI coordinator would agree with me in that we probably would not like to see it any broader than it already is, because to us, the way it is written, you can do with Title VI what you can do with any of the other formula programs already and the other discretionary programs already, so there is really no need for additional innovative program areas. There is no real need for additional programs at this point, as far as the way we see it.

With regard to Mrs. Kaplan's remarks, I agree with her 100 percent that library resources and today's librarians contribute to the improvement of students and are there to help with the same goal of improving student achievement. I am not quite sure that I would agree with putting any kind of required set aside in the statute that so much must be spent on library books. I do know for a fact that in the majority of the states that the majority of the school districts that receive only a few hundred dollars or a few thousand dollars use those monies for library materials, and that is evident in their reports.

Chairman Castle. Thank you, Dr. Martin. I understand what you are saying. I didn't mean to put you in a position of saying you are not supportive of a set aside for libraries. So, we are all for libraries. It is a question of what we are doing with the public funding and how we are doing it. We support Mrs. Kaplan's desire, but my concern is where we are doing it.

I am running out of time rapidly here, so I am going to turn to Secretary Woodruff. Quickly, you indicated that in Delaware you are looking at four program areas, or doing four program areas: library initiative, school climate, discipline programs, the technology acquisitions and innovative programs aimed at an enhancing student achievement. I am interested from the perspective of somebody running a state school system, how those were chosen. There is some concern here about is it broad, too vague, or whatever, but how were those chosen and do you feel comfortable with that, and is that working to enhance students' education in Delaware?

Mrs. Woodruff. Well, actually, those four areas are the four areas that most of our districts and private schools are targeting with Title VI funding, and so it is not something that we…

Chairman Castle. So, it is coming from the bottom up?

Mrs. Woodruff. It is not what we decided how the money would be used, but these are the things that most of the local districts are using the money for -- the libraries, school climate discipline, technology acquisition, and innovative programming. So, we decide both. They decide how they are going to spend the money, and then we decide together what state technical assistance need is to be provided for them either in these areas others that they tell us they need open.

Chairman Castle. A quick follow-up question. Is that generally the way, as far as you know, from your national experience is that the way it is done generally in most states?

Mrs. Woodruff. Yes, and actually…

Chairman Castle. The state provides the assistance to what the local areas choose?

Mrs. Woodruff. Yes. I think it is interesting with Delaware, as you know, we are so small that we can all come together by driving to the capital. We are there in one hour.

Chairman Castle. Delaware works that well, right?

Mrs. Woodruff. That absolutely right. It is the beauty of our ability to get together on a regular basis.

But I think in other states that are larger, what they very often do is to regionalize their technical assistance and support, and I think that is the case in most of the other larger states across the country, and then smaller states do what we do.

Chairman Castle. Thank you, Secretary. Unfortunately, I would like to ask some more questions, but the time has come to yield to Mr. Kildee for his questions.

Mr. Kildee. Mr. Chairman, you are very kind on the use of time.

The administration has not been supportive of this program. They have recommended zero funding again. They have done that for several years, but this Authorizing Committee, along with David Obey and John Porter on the Appropriations Committee, have seen the real value of this program. I think what you have done today and need to continue to do is to demonstrate the mission and the purpose and the uses of Title VI. We have good bipartisan support on this committee, but we need your input on a regular basis.

If I may address a question to Sister Suzanne? I am aware that many school districts use these funds for various needs. Do you believe that you schools are consulted sufficiently for the use of Title VI funding in Newark? If not, how could the consultation process be improved?

Sister Bellenoit. It is the funding that is difficult. The flexibility of the program is very easy to work within. The allocation in, say, for example, in Newark, Jersey City, or Elizabeth is probably around $16 or $17 per child. The allocation in the suburban schools is closer to $2 or $3 per child. Now, multiply that by the smaller enrollments we have; there isn't much to work with, but they do miracles with it anyway.

If this funding and this program were to disappear, in our system alone, in the cities of Newark, Elizabeth, and Jersey City, we would have to simply retract the entire school social service program which is funded partly by Title I, partly by Title VI, but no Title is capable of funding the entire program. No Title provides enough funding for something that is such a critical need for the children.

Mr. Kildee. In all three of these cities you mentioned, there is a high concentration of poverty.

Sister Bellenoit. Obviously in the public school system I believe it is very high. In the private schools in those three cities, it is probably closer to 40 percent, much higher, obviously, in the public school sector.

Mr. Kildee. Let me address a question to Secretary Woodruff. If you use Title VI funding in Delaware for professional development, are those efforts coordinated with your Eisenhower Professional Development funding under Title II, and how do you do that coordination?

Mrs. Woodruff. Yes, they are, and they are also coordinated with funding that is provided by our state legislature for professional development. As I mentioned in my testimony, we have a consolidated plan and grant process in Delaware where we require districts to look at what their goals are for student achievement, to lay out what their activities are what they believe they need to do, and then to determine where their funds can be applied to accomplish that.

As a part of that, we also require them to evaluate whether or not what they said they were going to do worked, and if it didn't, to adjust and to make improvements as we move forward. We have what we call a quality review process in Delaware where we go out to every district on a period basis to have those conversations, to look at real data about what is happening.

Mr. Kildee. Let me ask a follow-up question. If we were to leave this language basically as we reauthorized it in 1994, would it basically still meet your mission and your need and uses for these funds?

Mrs. Woodruff. When some of my friends in the districts heard that I was coming here today, what they said was, ``Please, ask that Title VI remain as it is.'' The flexibility is important, and we know that we have to be accountable through our planning and our reporting processes for how we use it, but the flexibility at the local level is very, very important to them.

Mr. Kildee. Dr. Martin, would you agree?

Dr. Martin. Yes, I would agree with that. I think even more importantly we might switch to language, such as continuous improvement, because even the word ``educational reform'' is sort of becoming outdated. We are supposed to be constantly be in a state of reform, and it is long-term plans, and so I would almost prefer some language that referred to continuous improvement type of language, because that envelopes to me much more than just reform.

Mr. Kildee. Ms. Kaplan?

Mrs. Kaplan. Well, now, I think that we would request some further emphasis on materials for school libraries specifically. I have found on the local level that the money sometimes gets diluted.

Mr. Kildee. Sister Bellenoit?

Sister Bellenoit. The flexibility of the program, I will also say, is the most important aspect. Title II, the Eisenhower Grant, Title IV, the drug-free programs are much more limited in their application. It is in Title VI that each individual non-public school can look at its own needs and almost certainly find some help from Title VI in meeting those needs.

In terms of the library concern, I can understand that and I am not sure how it works in other states, but in New Jersey it is the local district that decides what to do with the total allocation within its boundaries. For the non-public schools, it is each individual non-public school that decides, that administrator and faculty, on how to expend those funds. So, I would think that the pressure, for want of a better word, would have to be local.

Mr. Kildee. I thank the entire panel. Thank you very much.

Chairman Castle. Thank you, Mr. Kildee.

Next is the distinguished gentleman from Wisconsin, Mr. Petri.

Mr. Petri. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Thank you all for your contribution to our reauthorization process.

Just to close the circle, I wonder if, Mrs. Kaplan, if you remember the name of the book that caused Elizabeth to stop sucking her thumb and decided she wanted to check it out?

Mrs. Kaplan. It was called ``Jump Again.'' It was the stories of Uncle Remus.

Mr. Petri. Oh, yes. Uncle Remus has some interesting stories.

Mrs. Kaplan. There is nothing like a good trickster to get kids interested.

Mr. Petri. Yes. Well, we are hoping not to throw anyone into the Briar Patch up here.

But just to be a little more specific, we have kind of touched on this. I think you have each touched on it, and a number of you have asked questions about it. But it is my understanding that the president just submitted his budget, and it entitled certainly bipartisan serious consideration and, if possible, support. He is the President of the United States, and he has recommended eliminating Title VI and using the money for other needs in education. Could you comment specifically on that?

Title VI may be a great program, but are there other needs that are even greater? Should we try to support the administration in this regard or do you feel that this should be, as someone has said, dead on arrival? That is this particular recommendation. I would like each of you to comment on it.

Mrs. Woodruff. I would be happy to comment. I believe that there are certainly many meritorious proposals in the president's budget. However, I think that there are some that need adjusting, and Title VI is indeed one of them. We certainly need Title I; we certainly need the Eisenhower Professional Development funding, but one of the things that we find, both at the federal and the state level is that as funds are allocated, there are usually strings that are attached, that you must do this, this, or this, with them.

One of the things that we all look for, both at the local level and certainly at the state level, is the discretion to use some funds in the places where the need needs to be bumped up, if you will, enhanced. Programs need to be enhanced or certain supports need to be put in place that we don't have the capacity to do in other ways. So, this one I would respectfully tell the president we need to rethink Title VI.

Dr. Martin. I will add to that. I would reiterate what she said, and I find it sort of escapes me how the administration can continue to want to eliminate Title VI in the environment in which they want all students to achieve the highest standards and all teachers to teach the highest standards. Like I said in my testimony, it is a little bit hard for me to understand how we can get there without a program like Title VI, because the others are more narrowly focused, and I do believe that we need the other programs. But yet Title VI, as I said before, is the one program that can do what all the other programs do. So, if you are going to eliminate any programs, we might think about eliminating some of the others but not Title VI.

Mrs. Kaplan. I would like to say I attended a workshop once where we were talking about library advocacy, and a question was raised, ``Well, what do I say to my administrator when he or she says well, we can have lunch program or we can have a school library; which would you like?"

The answer is that it is not an either/or question and that in fact perhaps there are some places where shelves can be moved around a little bit, but if you think in long-term rather than short-term, supporting Title VI and education programs can help reduce the need for money in other areas.

Sister Bellenoit. I think there are as many answers to your question as there are states in the union, because I think an accurate evaluation of what Title VI does or doesn't do has to be looked at in the light of what a particular state government does for its schools.

I will give you one example from New Jersey. We have both public and non-public schools that have a $40 per pupil per year allocation for technology purposes. Now, that program is two years old, so ever since that program has kicked in, everyone has shied away from using Title VI for that purpose, and now they are funneling it into other causes.

Without repeating everything that has just been said, the ability to make that choice is critical; that needs change, and needs are different from one town to the next, from one school to the next.

So, to ask are there other needs out there that are not being met or could be better met with that money, I have no idea. There will be five new ones tomorrow morning. There were 10 new ones last month. We can't chase the needs quite that way. I think the individual states and the local districts are the ones in the best position to make those decisions.

Chairman Castle. Thank you, Mr. Petri. The distinguished gentleman from Virginia, Mr. Scott, is recognized.

Mr. Scott. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

Sister Bellenoit?

Sister Bellenoit. Yes, sir?

Mr. Scott. How do you pronounce your last name, I am sorry?

Sister Bellenoit. That is fine. You can say Bellenoit or you can say Bellenoit. Either one is fine.

Mr. Scott. Okay. Sister.

Sister Bellenoit. That is best.


Mr. Scott. I have a resolution from the National Catholic Education Association from 1992 that says that if we have any choice program, it must respect civil rights laws. Within the debate about whether we ought to have choice or not, there are some that suggest that if you have choice, civil rights laws ought to be respected, and others apparently feel that the civil rights laws need not apply. Do you support the position taken by the National Catholic Education Association that says that civil rights laws should apply?

Sister Bellenoit. Absolutely.

Mr. Scott. Thank you.

Dr. Martin, in your testimony, you point out that Title VI is a formula that has the capacity to enable all students to have access to technology, enable all students to read at the end of the third grade, enable children to achieve challenging standards. You indicate that those funds have resulted in a reduction in dropout rate, improvement of test scores.

The numbers I have seen on the amount of money we put into Title VI is about $1.50 per individual in the population. I mean it is 300 and some million dollars, which is about a $1 per person. In Virginia, we spend, in round numbers, about $1,000 per person in our school system. My question is what are you doing with this $1.50 per person so you can achieve all those results that schools apparently aren't able to do with $1,000?

Dr. Martin. Well, two comments with regard to that. One is by the time you calculate the figures as far as the actual numbers of students that the program is serving versus the number of students that the allocation is based upon, the figure goes up a little bit. I know in Texas, for us, it goes up to between $5 and $6 a student as far as the allocation, but once that gets to the district, the district would, in all likely cases, select fewer numbers of students to serve as well as at the private schools. So, I think that would go up a little bit.

Even given so, though, $5 or $6 a student still doesn't seem like much. I think what we have to look at is that Title VI contributes toward all of these things, just like Title I does and Title II and Title III technology and Goals 2000, all those. It is simply one piece of the pie that contributes to the achievement in addition to the local funds and the state funds that go to school districts.

Mr. Scott. One of the things you mentioned is that it targets the money where it can do the most good. Should we adjust the targeting formula to target even better than we are targeting now? I understand that the states have flexibility in how they target the money. Some target towards low-income, some just by population. Should we require them to focus better on where the need is most acute?

Ms. Martin. My belief is that the formula flexibility, as currently written in the statute, is adequate, and it is meeting the needs of the states, because it provides the allocation based on the enrollment of the students in or based on the children ages 5 to 17, and once the money gets to the states, they base their allocation on the enrollment of the students in public and participating private schools. They must add the additional factor based on one of those three factors that you mentioned. To me, that is an adequate way for getting it to the district, then retain the flexibility for the district to be able to decide how to use those funds, which student populations to target.

Mr. Scott. Now, Ms. Kaplan, if you look at all the money spent in Title VI, a disproportionate amount is actually spent towards libraries. Some spend it on libraries; some don't. If spending on libraries is so successful in improving education, why shouldn't we have a direct library funding stream? In terms of a general federal role for education, we want to provide funding for worthy things that the local school systems cannot or are not spending money on low-income students, disabled students, bilingual students. Within the normal political debate, they don't do well. Should we have a direct targeted funding for libraries, since we aren't doing as well in funding them?

Mrs. Kaplan. Well, there are the House bill, H.R. 3008, and the Senate bill, S. 1262, that are targeting funding specifically for school libraries. We feel the support for the school libraries is to actually broaden the base of what is available to the students so that they can go beyond what is being introduced to them in the classroom and can expand and delve deeper into subjects if they want to or change subjects according to their desires. So, we do support the two bills. Is that your question?

Mr. Scott. Yes.

Chairman Castle. Thank you, Mr. Scott.

Next is the gentlewoman from New Jersey, Ms. Roukema.

Ms. Roukema. I appreciate Delaware's contribution here, as well as Texas, but being from New Jersey and the Archdiocese, I do welcome the Sister here and express appreciation for all that you do…

Sister Bellenoit. Thank you very much. It is my pleasure.

Ms. Roukema. …in approving the educational programs in New Jersey.

I have heard what you have all said, and I don't disagree with it. I certainly understand and perhaps it is the former schoolteacher in me and certainly I agree with you as to the educational values here. Maybe I wasn't listening carefully enough or maybe again it is my own direct focus is again on improving the professional standards and improving increasing the numbers of teachers in the classroom.

Many of us are concerned that perhaps we should be putting more stress on that in the Title VI and through other means. Could you please associate yourselves with the question, of course understanding, as we all do, that the discretion should be at the state and local level for this. But are we providing enough opportunity or enough options in Title VI to improve the professional status and training of the teachers, as well as getting more teachers into the classroom?

Who would like to help me with that?

Dr. Martin. I will start.

Ms. Roukema. How do you evaluate it, yes, on a priority basis?

Dr. Martin. I believe that Title VI is contributing strongly toward that. I am going to assume that we didn't directly address that, because as far as increasing the numbers of teachers is being addressed through the Title VI class size reduction program with additional teachers with the goal of putting 100,000 teachers in the schools over a period of six years.

All along, though, until that program came along in Texas, as well as in many other states, a big portion of that money, as a matter of fact the majority of those funds, are used especially in districts where there is enough to pay for the salary of a teacher. In many instances that is used to put additional teachers in the classroom to reduce the class size already or to provide supplemental assistance in reading or in math or wherever they are having difficulty, very similar to many of the Title I programs that are occurring.

The professional development piece used to be a target area alone in Chapter 2, and when Title VI was reauthorized, it was removed. The Department of Education clarified, however, that within all of those innovative programs areas, that certainly professional development was a piece of it. I would like to see it added, to be honest with you, again, as an area so that districts don't perhaps have to struggle so hard with whether or not it is allowable and whether it is, because, to us, whether it pertains to classroom management, multidisciplinary curriculum, reading techniques, whatever, needs to have professional development in those areas.

Ms. Roukema. Thank you.

Anyone else, please, your priority?

Mrs. Woodruff. We certainly are delighted with the federal assistance on class size reduction. It is an initiative we began with state funding and then have been able to add with the federal allocations in that regard, so we are very pleased with that.

In terms of Title VI, there is some money in the class size reduction funds that do allow for professional development, and I think that what our districts are saying is let us add then out of the Title VI allocations as well as what we can use out of Title I and others to make sure that as we are bringing these new teachers on, that we are also making sure that we provide the kinds of supports that they need in terms of classroom management, which is very often something that is neglected in pre-service programs, quite frankly, in terms of instruction for new teachers, and also to make sure that we get them up to speed on the pedagogy that is necessary to meet the diverse needs of the children in our schools.

Ms. Roukema. But you are saying that we could supplement what we are doing in Title I and Title II.

Mrs. Woodruff. Sure, and that is exactly what our districts do.

Ms. Roukema. Thank you.

Anyone else, Sister Bellenoit?

Sister Bellenoit. That is precisely the way we use the funding when it is used for that purpose. But because professional development is such an ongoing and central need to quality education, most of the private schools at least, and I speak only for them, incorporate that into their regular budgets simply because we can't wait or be sure or expect to have enough to meet our needs from year to year. Some schools have quite a bit of turnover, have a great deal of professional development catching up to do with their staffs. Others have much more stable staffs and can go a year or two with the minimal expenditure in that area.

A complication in using federal money for in-service and religious schools is that it has been, in the past, very difficult for us to get permission to use that money to pay a sub while the teacher is released to go get the professional in-service because of church-State complications. It has been less useful to us in that regard. Asking the teachers to do all of their in-service after hours because of that is also a rather unfair burden.

So, do we need funding for that purpose? Yes. Is Title VI the way to do it for the private religious schools? I am not sure it would be as effective unless some of these other complications could be cleared up.

Ms. Roukema. Thank you. That is helpful, and we will look at all of those aspects of this as we go along and determine whether or not we are going to expand Title VI.

Thank you very much.

Chairman Castle. Thank you, Ms. Roukema.

Next is the distinguished congresswoman from California, Ms. Woolsey.

Ms. Woolsey. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Thank you for being such good witnesses on this issue and doing so much with a lot less than you were provided for these same programs 20 years ago.

I think you are aware that when 40 programs were collapsed into one under Title VI, Chapter 2, over the last 20 years, the funding for these programs decreased by 51 percent.

So, let us talk about the politics of it. I hear you asking for flexibility; I understand it; I appreciate it, but it is much more difficult to cut a good program that has been focused and targeted than it is to cut a conglomeration of programs that is very hard to measure.

I know you are going to tell me that you want the flexibility, but if it would save Title VI, Chapter 2, which programs would you, in your districts, focus on, in order to get more money and in order to ensure that Title VI is funded.

Let us start at the beginning, and if you want to tell me that you prefer the open flexibility, that is fine too, but remember the politics.

Dr. Martin. I am assuming that this question is easy, if we had to narrow Title VI in order to get it through again, I think we would want to retain the focus on technology and broader than just instructional technology but technology to enable the teachers to have access to the Internet and all kinds of other technologies, satellite, distance learning, all of those kinds of things.

I think we need to retain the focus on school reform but maybe switch that language to a continuous improvement kind of language, anything that assists the districts in improving the educational environment, the learning environment, addressing student achievement, those kinds of things. If you retain that piece, then it allows them to still address any of the student populations that still have special needs.

I think one of the things that have been missing from the statute is requiring that they identify in the application as to what their needs are. It is alluded to that they conduct a needs assessment, but it has never been required to be described in the application. I think that that would require them to focus more and might help in the long run with accountability and strengthening the purpose of the program.

Ms. Woolsey. Ms. Woodruff?

Mrs. Woodruff. My comments will tell you exactly why I think flexibility is needed. While Dr. Martin is saying that Texas could use the money for technology that may not necessarily be a continuing priority in Delaware because of the work that we have done in that regard.

So, I would say that we need to maintain the flexibility, but I also believe that it would certainly be appropriate for us to say when you apply these funds to enhance another program or to develop something that is innovative, then provide us the data that tells us whether or not it indeed make the difference that you expected it to make. Sometimes Title VI perhaps has not been reported as showing improvements, because the questions have not been asked.

Ms. Woolsey. Ms. Kaplan?

Mrs. Kaplan. I am not really sure I am very qualified to answer that question.

Ms. Woolsey. I assume your answer would be libraries. You are very qualified.


Mrs. Kaplan. We are asking for a lot of accountability from our classroom teachers and from our schools, and I think I would agree with Secretary Woodruff on the ability of demonstrating or the requirement to demonstrate success.

I would also have to say, being married to a statistician who researches education reform, that it takes a long time to realize change and successful change in education, and I think that the problems that we are having with the funding of education programs is that it has been kind of a long, neglected area. Suddenly we are trying to infuse money into a neglected area that is dependent on human behavior.

So we are saying, ``Okay, we have given you this money for a couple of years; it is not working. Now we are asking you to focus more or we are going to take it away completely.'' We are just zeroing it out when in fact we haven't actually had the opportunity to realize the change.

So, in a long winded way, I am saying, yes, libraries, of course, but perhaps focusing it more on something, say, for example, technology is not really the way to go but to let us work with people and let us realize the change.

Ms. Woolsey. Mr. Chairman, do I have time for a follow question?

Chairman Castle. We have time for a brief follow-up.

Ms. Woolsey. You have to be brief.

Sister Bellenoit. I shall be brief.

I will suggest that if we really needed to narrow the focus of Title VI, I would approach it from the perspective of the portions of Title VI that are underutilized already. Why are they underutilized, and if it is because the districts regularly choose not to use the funding in those areas, then that is a message that says this is not where we need it, unless of course one of those areas is libraries, then you ignore that.


For example, school reform efforts linked to Goals 2000 is one of the areas. I believe Goals 2000 is expiring or has expired. I think you could trim the list by removing the underutilized portions of it.

Ms. Woolsey. Thank you very much.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

Chairman Castle. Thank you, Ms. Woolsey.

The distinguished gentleman from Colorado, Mr. Schaffer, is next.

Mr. Schaffer. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

Madam Secretary, the 15 percent, the $14 million for administrative costs is below the five percent cap state administrative fees that we typically utilize or reference in most education programs. Why is it that we are able to have less expensive administrative costs under Title VI?

Mrs. Woodruff. Well, let me just address the issue of state set-aside funding altogether, if you don't mind, and that is that very often we receive funds, and we are to administer them, but we get no money to provide that support, and that is problematic, and I think that in Title VI we have an allocation that is provided to the state for technical assistance and state administration. I think that the state administration portion we try to use to our best advantage, but I think the technical assistance component that goes along with that is how we get a lot more for the money that is really invested.

Mr. Schaffer. In terms of that figure that is set, $14 million, for 1999 is that too low, too high, or about right? What are your thoughts?

Mrs. Woodruff. Well, I would be foolish if I told you that we could do more for less. We would certainly welcome additional funding for state administration. It is not my goal to grow a larger department, but essentially to be able to provide the support that our districts are asking us to provide to them. As I mentioned earlier, right now they are asking us for more support than sometimes I can even have my staff provide for them, in terms of this continuous improvement effort, and that is exactly how we have been looking school reform in Delaware.

Mr. Schaffer. Dr. Martin, one of your suggestions for the committee was to enhance the accountability under Title VI. It is a great word, and I am all for accountability, but that usually means that we have passed more rules and more reporting requirements and so on and so forth, and I just want you to speak to that a little bit more.

Having been a state legislator, I know what these accountability things look like as we end up spending a lot of money trying to be accountable to the federal government, which I can't name anybody in Colorado as far as kids go and names of the people, but principals, administrators, teachers, and even folks in Denver, Colorado where the capital of my state is, a little closer to the real world of education, and I think have a better handle on what works and what doesn't. More accountability usually means more paperwork. Am I wrong?

Dr. Martin. In a way it does, yes. But I think there are ways that we can get at that that it wouldn't be quite so burdensome as it might sound. For instance, the suggestion earlier to require in the local application that they, we know that they have done a needs assessment of some sort, or at least we hope they have, because it is alluded to in the statute, that they simply describe in that application what were the results of the needs assessment, and based on that, how are they going to target Title VI funds to use for those areas so that we can kind of get an up-front view that they really have conducted an appropriate needs assessment? I think that would strengthen the accountability.

Then at the end, rather than the very minimal reporting that they usually do, which is in terms of dollars allocated for the different areas and numbers of students served and numbers of teachers trained, that has been one of the downfalls of the program, and that is why we have had to argue year after year after year for appropriations and reauthorization, and that is why we voluntarily now for four years have done what we call this national compendium where we give a bird's eye view of how the funds are being used and specific examples that cite exemplary programs and practices that are going on. So we have done that on a voluntary basis anyway, and the local districts a lot of times contribute knowledge and experiences on a voluntary basis.

So I think we could just strengthen the end of the year report by asking for some descriptive kind of information that tells us that based on your report, ``You said on your needs assessment you were going to do this. We could also ask, how did it work for you? If it didn't work for you, how are you going to improve your practices for next year?'' I think it would be some minimal kinds of things, provided that it is structured in the language right and provided that the U.S. Department of Education does not go overboard on their interpretation of that language and hopefully request our assistance in interpreting that language.

Mr. Schaffer. Time is about to expire here. If anybody else has anything to add I would just ask your watchful observation and assistance as our legislation moves forward because I am for accountability too, but if we can end up drafting the language that is useful but not burdensome, that is our goal obviously.

Dr. Martin. Ours as well.

Mr. Schaffer. Passing these accountability provisions, in general terms, we do in the law, tends to be often expounded upon by the Department of Education in a way that results in big headaches for states and not a lot of results or usefulness with the data that ends up coming here to Washington. So, any guidance that you all can provide as we go through this process would be useful and instructive.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

Chairman Castle. Thank you, Mr. Schaffer.

Next is the distinguished gentlewoman from New York, Ms. McCarthy.

Ms. McCarthy. Thank you, Mr. Chairman, and I apologize not being here for all of your testimony. We are still in the habit here of scheduling two committee hearings at the same time, so I was on the other side of the building.

Being in the District the last couple of months and hearing from everybody, from the librarians, from the teachers, we have our new bishop that just came from Jersey, so we have been visiting with the diocese, the one thing I keep hearing is the flexibility, and I think it is extremely important, and I would love to see if we could even increase the funding a little bit, mainly because I found that once we start taking away a title, which in this case would be Title VI, and it goes into a block grant, you are all going to lose, because it is just not going to get down to you. I think that is why we try and go into those different titles so there is flexibility for all of you to work on everywhere that you see fit, because each district is different. Even in my own district each school, actually, uses the monies in different ways. So, I think we have to fight for that.

I am sorry that the libraries are the step-child of everything, and they are. I am totally…

Mrs. Kaplan. I am sorry too.

Ms. McCarthy. I am totally embarrassed when I walk into my schools and see their libraries. The only thing I can say is that the towns that I go into that have my schools in it, their libraries are getting better and better. My own town or Mineola is just investing in a brand new library, finally coming up to date. It was a disgrace. So, people do care about libraries, but unfortunately in the school system it is still the step-child.

Hopefully, we can work all together, because it is bipartisan. I am sorry to see that the president wants to eliminate that. I think there are enough of us hopefully, to make sure that doesn't happen. You are on the forefront. We listen to all of you when you come in and talk to us, and we will fight for your causes, and I am pretty sure most of us will.

Thank you.

Mrs. Kaplan. Thank you.

Chairman Castle. Thank you.

Mr. Scott. Mr. Chairman?

Chairman Castle. Yes, Mr. Scott?

Mr. Scott. May I ask one additional question?

Chairman Castle. Yes, please go ahead, sir.

Mr. Scott. I would like to ask Secretary Woodruff if there would be any support for increasing the state's share so that you could do statewide programs, best practices, or something similar that could be disseminated to the various school divisions rather than have the school divisions have to reinvent the wheel as they go along? It may even be developing software so that each locality could share in that research as to which software ought to be obtained. Have you looked at that to determine whether or not it is appropriate?

Mrs. Woodruff. I believe that it would certainly be helpful for the state to have some additional funds that we could use to provide support for districts. I would hate to see that come at the expense of the funds that go to the district and to the…

Mr. Scott. This would not be for administration. This would be for actual statewide programs.

Mrs. Woodruff. For technical assistance, yes, we would welcome it. I believe our districts would welcome it too.

Dr. Martin. Could I make one comment on that? I am glad that you mentioned that, because at a meeting last October, the Title VI coordinators were meeting with some of the Department of Education staff, and some of their directors had set aside some national funds, held back some of the allocation to use for evaluation purposes. Well, they didn't use it for evaluation, so they said, ``What would you like for us to do with it?''

We recommended exactly what you are talking about but at the national level, to take that money and develop a national clearinghouse, so to speak, that districts and states could contribute toward a bank of information of successful and innovative and exemplary practices that teachers could draw from, because at this moment there is nothing like that that exists.

Chairman Castle. Thank you, Mr. Scott.

Mr. Ford, the distinguished gentleman from Tennessee has rejoined us and may wish to ask questions.

Mr. Ford. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

I won't be long, because I don't like coming into hearings when I have missed all of the testimony and pretend as if I know everything that was said and railing for or against what might have been said.

But I would like to make the point, I’m sure some of the points have been made as a result of some of the things I have heard my colleagues say in the back room and from even my staff, but I do want to thank all of the panelists for being here today.

As the Chairman mentioned, I am from Tennessee, from the southwest corner, Memphis, and we are struggling, as many school districts are, to figure out the right balance between flexibility and accountability. I supported and continue to support providing states with more flexibility. I believe that many of these challenges and problems are being confronted at the local level and oftentimes we at the federal level ought to give them autonomy to do certain things.

But by the same token, I also think it is only fair that we have some way of accounting for tax dollars, or shall I say taxpayers' dollars. It amazes me when I hear my colleagues, and others criticize and ridicule Washington, and even ridicule ourselves, almost suggesting that we are so irresponsible and callous that we can't be trusted, that we can't even trust ourselves to do what is right.

I believe that there is room for a national role or some form of national participation in our local schools. I certainly don't mean to suggest that the federal government ought to usurp or trample the rights or the authority over the jurisdiction of local officials.

But I think that we at the federal level have an interest in knowing that kids in Minneapolis and Memphis can add and that they can read. I don't think there is anything wrong with the federal government setting some minimum standards as to what we should expect from local school districts, particularly when we are here appropriating taxpayer dollars for these initiatives and for these efforts.

As long as states don't shrink the rights that are guaranteed under the federal Constitution I don't think anything is wrong with states playing a huge, if not exclusive roles in education. Nor do I think anything is wrong with the federal government asking for some accountability as to how federal dollars, taxpayer dollars are being spent.

I don't know of a bank in America that I can go in and (based on some of the statistics and studies that they discriminate against African-Americans and women-owned businesses) say, ``My business has failed for the last 20 years, but if you give me another $2 million line of credit, I promise you I will do it right this time, and I will be able to pay my loans on time, and I will pay back the loan in full.''

Although as real and as sincere and as genuine as I might be, the bank is going to ask for some records, they are going to ask for some documentation to show that I have a new plan and some new way of going about doing things and implementing some regime of accountability.

So, I would hope that this committee keeps that in mind. I know that there are different feelings on my side of the aisle about Title VI I would hope that we could find the right balance here on this committee that continues to empower you and legions of others around the country who are interested in seeing the quality and the delivery of education improve at the elementary and secondary level.

Mr. Chairman, I don't have any questions. I think much has been asked, and I want to have that statement inserted into the record. I would like to have a few days to insert a written statement into the record as well.

A Written Statement from the Honorable Harold Ford, Jr. was not provided.



Chairman Castle. Thank you, Mr. Ford, for your brilliant statement, especially the part about fairness; we appreciate it.

Mr. Ford. Mr. Kildee is not bad either.


He is definitely the fairest ranking member in the House.

Chairman Castle. I think obviously, we have concluded with all of the members, and this is the only panel of the day. We are not going to have a second round of questioning so that concludes this hearing.

I would just like to say one or two things, and I am sure Mr. Kildee would like to say one or two things as well.

First, I want to thank all of you for being here today. It is always an inconvenience to come here to Washington, DC. I know it chews a better part of your schedules, even when you come from a close distance. But we really appreciate your being here and presenting your testimony. It is important even to those who are not here in attendance.

I thought that Congresswoman Woolsey made an interesting point that sort of frustrates me. As you may recall, the point she made was that sometimes when you have a specific targeted program with a specific targeted population or methodology of education and you can prove that that program is working in a certain way, you develop a constituency for it. Therefore, it is easier to protect.

This is the same committee in the same Congress that almost unanimously believed in education flexibility. That is, giving all of you more flexibility in terms of how you run these programs. Some, as a matter of fact, believe that we should go even further by taking most of the federal programs and almost block granting them, turning them back to the states. Others of us are a little more cautious about doing that.

But it is hard to believe that we sort of get put in a catch-22 situation where we have to protect a Title VI program that all of us support, because we have seen generally in our home areas what you have done with Title VI funding. We think it improves things a great deal. Because it doesn't have necessarily a particular constituency or you can't demonstrate that this improved test scores by 10 points, whatever it may be, some would question it. Well, I don't.

I feel that this program works very, very well. In fact, I am disappointed that funding has not increased commensurately, even with the cost of living, much less other things we should be doing in education. It is just like when we fund the National Institutes of Health. People who are suffering from a particular disease obviously would like all of the money to go to whatever their particular disease is, just as Mrs. Kaplan would like to see it all go to libraries. She knows and I know it is not quite that simple. In fact, there is even a question of what should be done on a state and local level for that as well as how we deal with it at the federal level.

But I think fundamentally you have made this program work well, and I do think the support is extensive in Congress on both sides of the aisle. However, we will have to look at the language carefully and address the various concerns of members as we go through the authorization process. But you have helped reinforce that support here, and for that I am very appreciative. Again, thank you for your attendance here today.

With that, I will yield to Mr. Kildee.

Mr. Kildee. Thank you, Mr. Chairman, and thank you for having this hearing today. We had four outstanding witnesses.

I would like to keep Title VI in place. I think it has served the children of this country very well. I would like to see it better funded. Furthermore, I would like to see a separate stream of funding for libraries.

I think Title VI has served this nation well, and I would like it to receive more funding. The administration, which I support from time to time since I am a Democrat, at least I pose as one from time to time, is wrong on this one. I think we have to work together in a bipartisan way and preserve Title VI, basically as it is now. We have heard some good ideas from you today, and I certainly would like to support Representative Major Owens' bill on libraries as an additional stream of funding for libraries.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

Chairman Castle. Thank you, Mr. Kildee. Again, I want to thank the witnesses for being here today and to inform us of any additional comments or ideas you may have as the authorization process forges ahead.

With that, we stand adjourned.

[Whereupon, at 12:07 p.m., the subcommittee was adjourned.]