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specific jobs is like telling the young man preparing to take instruction in automobile driving, "Son, it's all right for you to drive a car but you must learn to do so using only gasoline or lubricating oil. You cannot use both." To continue legislative authority for the Administrator to effect unsound and illogical procedures of this sort would be to encourage frustration for the earnest sincere veteran bound for a career in aviation and loss of valuable manpower in the Nation's civil aviation base.
History has established firmly the worth of pilot training in civil schools. In the field of pilot training alone during World War II the late Gen. H. H. Arnold was able to gain for his country the services of 25,000 more combat airmen by using civilians. The average age of civilian flight instructors in USAF contract flight schools in World War II was about 34 years. It is higher than that in the current cadet training program in basic contract schools some sampling studies indicate. While VA's position has been that national defense is not its mission, its training program has definite impact on national airpower and preparedness. If it is permitted to deny men who have fought in one war the right to obtain complete training to fit them for jobs as airline copilots, pilots of executive-type aircraft or flight instructors-younger men of combat age and physical qualifications will have to be used in future emergencies for assignments thạt might better be performed by older men or those with limited physical handicaps.
It is apparent to all students of government that at the Federal level, arms of government in the same matter often move in different directions. This is understandable in minor matters but people in aviation wonder how at a time when the Defense Department is putting major emphasis on building up the varied elements of national airpower, VA should dismiss flight training as something akin to ballroom dancing, barkeeping, and skiing and propose legislative provisions, the obvious intent of which is to restrict and sharply curtail flight training. We suggest that Congress in its wisdom ought to reject again, as it has several times in years past after due consideration, VA's assumption that flight training is in essence avocational.
If VA were to appoint a qualified competent aviation training advisory committee consisting of persons of recognized industry standing in the transport, manufacturing, fixed-base operator, executive pilot and training school phases of aviation to aid in determining what a realistic and useful training program should consist of, the taxpayer would get his money's worth and the veteran would be more practically and directly qualified for working jobs.
Too often the GI program is looked at alone from the standpoint of the boy who wants academic education. We cannot all be lawyers or government economists or college professors. We need in peace and war men trained to work with their hands. We need men to fly airplanes and men to keep them flying. Yet S. 1940 (p. 12, sec. (b)) wants to raise the full-time course requirement for trade schools on clock-hour basis "below the college” level to 36 hours a week. Full-time courses for college students in most academic institutions is 15 to 18 hours of classroom work. Why 36 hours in an aviation technical school for example? The first 21/2 pages of the April 1, 1951, CAA list of certificated mechanic schools (the latest published list) contains names of 27 schools. Names of seven of those schools have been crossed out in red ink indicating they have closed their doors. More tech and flight schools are closing every month. This is no time to raise sharply the number of hours required for classifying as fulltime instruction. Those CAA-approved airplane and engine mechanic schools which are now on a 30-hour basis should continue to be regarded as giving full-time instruction.
The shortage of airplane and engine mechanics is best Illustrated by the fact that the personnel man of a major airline went into Boston recently with orders to try to employ 300 mechanics. He spent $800 in newspaper advertising and managed to get four. In spite of the great demand, airplane and engine schools closing their doors because the draft, the lack of civilian students and the difficulties of continuing under the VA program. They need no needless new problems.
We thank you and your committee for consideration of this letter and if we can be of any further assistance in digging up facts on anything pertinent to aviation problems, we shall be delighted to try to aid. Sincerely yours,
WAYNE WEISHAAR, Secretary.
LETTER FROM ASSOCIATION OF LAND-GRANT COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITIES ENCLOSING
STATEMENT OF THE ASSOCIATION IN RE A VETERANS' EDUCATIONAL PROGRAM FOR THE FUTURE
SEPTEMBER 18, 1951. Mr. Ray RODGERS, Committee on Labor and Public Welfare, United States Senate,
Washington 25, D, C. DEAR MR. RODGERS : In Mr. Thackrey's absence from the office I am forwarding to you the enclosed statement entitled "A Veterans' Educational Program for the Future,” which was prepared by a special committee of this association. President Milton S. Eisenhower, of the Pennsylvania State College, chairman of the association's legislative committee, requested that this be sent you in connection with the current hearings on this subject. Sincerely yours,
Secretary to Mr. Thackrey.
A VETERANS' EDUCATIONAL PROGRAM FOR THE FUTURE
On request of the chairman of the House Select Committee To Investigate the Veterans' Educational Program (Representative Olin E. Teague, of Texas), an inquiry was sent to the heads of all land-grant institutions inviting their suggestions as to a future educational program (if any) for veterans. From these replies a suggested program was developed by an ad hoc committee of the association, and sent to all member institutions for their comment.
The response indicated a very substantial majority approval of the soundness of the proposed program.
Responses indicate that in the initial discussions in member institutions, and in those of the program as formulated, a wide group of educators experienced in the veterans program and in general educational administration were consulted.
The United States of America is about to embark on a program of universal service and training involving nearly all the young men of the country as they come of military age. Young women also will be involved, to an increased extent, on a voluntary basis. The program promises to include about 800,000 young men entering annually, for periods of training and service up to 26 or 27 months.
Barring full-scale war, most of these young men will not be in combat, will be furnished subsistence and clothing by the Government, and paid at a rate which will enable those who care to anticipate the future and are encouraged to do so to make substantial savings.
The GI bill of rights of World War II, as embodied in Public Law 346, was adopted by a grateful Nation at the end of 4 years of full-scale war. Whatever its intent, it has embodied several principles in its operations: Readjustment to civilian life, aid to make up for lost opportunities by the individual, provision by the Nation to “fill the gap" of essential trained leadership created by the war, and ailditional compensation for service to the Nation. It was adopted after a period in which service was not universal, but selective. It is universally agreed that it accomplished great good for the Nati: n, was a constructive step in advance over former programs; and that it also involved excessive cost, some unsound principles, and unwarranted profit by many who were in no sense the intended beneficiaries of veterans' legislation.
At the level of higher education, the problems raised by a long-range veterans' educational program under a system of universal service and training are radically different from those raised by the World War II program. At the end of World War II higher education for men had been drastically curtailed for several years. There had been little or no expansion of facilities, and college staffs were scattered. Millions of veterans were released from service in a short period of time, many of them with the desire to continue or start their education under the GI program. Neither the facilities nor the staffs of the colleges and universities were adequate to the emergency, without help from other than their own normal resources. Public institutions were in many instances operating under budgets fixel for 2 years by legislative bodies, to meet war conditions.
Through provision for payment of established fees, private educational institutions were generally able to recapture a higher portion of their educational costs than were public institutions with low fees. Private institutions with limited enrollments were not faced with the acute problem of plant expansion which faced institutions with public responsibilities; although many of the private institutions accepted responsibility of expansion for the veterans program, and the severe financial burden involved. Amendments to the law and regulations to provide for payments of the cost of actual teaching personnel and supplies to institutions with low customary fees was necessary and just, and to some extent reduced the differential treatment accorded public as distinguished from private institutions in the aid given to meet the xpansion problem. A new problem
The situation created by a universal military training and service program will (short of full-scale war) result in the long run in an even flow of students who have completed their service requirements, to the colleges and universities. Under these circumstances, we believe the Federal Government is no longer justified in making direct payments to any educational institution as part of a veterans program, except as special administrative or counseling services are requested. ayment of fees, furnishing of books and supplies and the like, should (so far as the institution is concerned) be the responsibility of the student. Public policy so far as the support of institutions as such should be determined entirely independent of a future veterans program not involving a sudden and excessive demand on institutional facilities. Should the country be involved in full mobilization, and another pent-up demand for educational services result, direct institutional compensation may again be necessary. If so, all institutions should be on the basis of compensation of costs or their equivalent. A new approach
Since the Nation now faces a situation entirely different from what it faced at the end of World War II, it is time to adopt a new approach to the problem of legislation for those in universal military service, based on these principles: (1) Continued full aid or compensation to those individuals, and their families, who suffer physical or other handicaps through military service, (2) abandonment of postservice rewards for military service as such, except those normally provided for unusual acts of heroism or devotion to duty, (3) elimination of profiteering from any veterans program, (4) action to minimize the loss of highly skilled leadership involved in the enforced interruption of education at a critical period.
This assumes that defense service is the duty of every citizen, and that when it is universal no reward should be expected or given. If special hazard is involved, it should be recognized by the military services during the period in which it is incurred. Universal extension of the principle of reward for national service, in our opinion, involves too high a monetary and moral cost for the Nation.
We do, however, face the hard fact that we are a Nation whose high stage of advancement and future progress depends on skilled technical and social leadership. Our greatest strength has been the fact that the opportunity for advancement is open to all, that our society is not stratified, that the poor man's son along with the rich man's son has had opportunity before him for advancement, based on ability. We have been far from perfect in this respect, and the rising costs of education in recent years have caused opportunity to be less abundant for young people with ability but without money. The effect of an interruption of two or more years in education will fall hardest on this group. Advanced age and maturity, the desire for normal family life, and the lack in many instances of a strong educational tradition, make it likely that the potentialities of many more of these young men will be lost to the Nation unless corrective steps are taken.
The United States as a Nation cannot afford this loss. Our remarkable progress as a Nation has been based on the fact that a relatively high percentage of those with unusual ability, whatever their economic status, have been able to get the advanced education which permits maximum use of those abilities in scientific, professional, political, and community life. As our society becomes more complex, our standard of living higher, and our international responsibilities greater, we need an increasing-not a decreasing-percentage of able people with the knowledge to use their ability most effectively. This is the real basis, and the only basis, for a program based on the interruption of normal life for extended military service.
A LONG-RANGE PROGRAM
We therefore recommend a permanent program to meet the conditions of the foreseeable future. We believe its elements to be in the national interest, and not in the selfish interest of either institutions or individuals. They apply specifically to higher education, as this is the field of our competence, and the most critical field affected by universal training and service. Specific elements of the program are these :
1. That there should be a continued, adequate, and permanent educational program for those disabled or handicapped as the result of military service. Public Law 16 provides the present framework for such a program. It is unsatisfactory in some respects, but these can be considered separately at the appropriate time.
2. Assistance should be given, on the basis of demonstrated ability regardless of location of service, to those whose education is substantially interrupted by military service. This assistance should not cover the full cost of education or be differentiated as to dependency, but should make it possible for any young man to go on with his education with the aid of his own work and resources. This would involve: Finances
(a) Payments at the rate of $800 to $900 for an academic year of 9 months, going to the veteran-student on satisfactory evidence that he is enrolled in an accredited college or university of his choice and making satisfactory educational progress.
(b) These payments would be available for four academic years (36 months) to all completing 24 or more months of military training and service. For those completing only the basic training period, no payments would be made. For those completing more than the basic period, but less than 24 months, benefits would be proportional to service beyond the established basic period (4 to 6 months under proposed law). There would be no additional benefits for those serving more than 24 months.
(c) For those desiring to continue education beyond the period above, there should be established a system of low-interest loans, repayable in a reasonable period after completion or termination of work.
(d) Students would be eligible for educational payments only on furnishing satisfactory evidence of carrying substantially a full-time program and being in good standing as a student at an accredited college or university.
(e) The above payments would constitute the entire subsidy. No direct payments would be made to institutions, or extra payments to anyone for books, supplies, fees, and the like. These would all be the responsibility of the veteran student. If educational institutions are called on to perform administrative services (such as payment of checks to veterans and certification of their good standing or provision of special counseling) they should be compensated for those special services by the Government, but only for those special services required by the Government.
(f) While these recommendations are limited to higher education, we believe that no other veterans' education or training program of any character should be established by the Congress, which calls for or permits compensation to the individual or the institution in excess of the above, except for handicapped veterans.
(9) No duplication of subsidy.-No student whose education has already been substantially subsidized at Government expense, or who is currently receiving such a subsidy from other governmental programs, should receive a duplicate subsidy under this program. Concurrent subsidy under this program and another governmental program should be denied, and eligibility for assistance under this program reduced by a time period equivalent to that covered by a previous program involving full or substantial governmental subsidy. Thus those fully subsidized under the NROTC Holloway plan or its equivalent, those detailed to educational institutions by the military for study, recipients of substantial scholarships under nonmilitary Federal programs, would be covered by the above bar against duplication. A distinction should be made, however, between such programs and minor forms of aid related to duties currently performed (example, the small payments made under current Army-Air ROTC and Navy Contract ROTC programs).
Administration, differentiation of programs, policies
(a) General.—The general administration of a program involving veterans as veterans, including an educational program, should remain the responsibility of the Veterans' Administration. Certification of the eligibility of veterans and arrangements for financial payments to them can clearly be handled most efficiently only through this agency which has the responsibility for record keeping under all types of veterans legislation.
(b) Administrative differentiation between educational programs.—The most serious difficulties in relationships between colleges and universities and the Veterans' Administration in the World War II program arose out of the fact that basic legislation for the entire program resulted in an “across the board" set of administrative, regulatory, and approval standards for all types of institutions and programs. Experience brought specific amendments to the law covering certain situations (i, e., the ban on avocational and recreational training) but basically the situation was that regulations or administrative decisions were made under the assumption that all kinds of educational institutions and programs are alike and must be subject to the same set of regulations. This flies directly in the face of reality. Nonprofit colleges and universities, whether public or private, have known and established methods and standards of accreditation. There are different, but equally well established and known, standards set by State laws and regulatory bodies for the regular classroom programs of nonprofit elementary and secondary schools, whether public or private. The problems involved in setting of standards and approval for institutional on-farm training, on-the-job training, and other programs are of an entirely different nature. Policy for higher education
The following recommendations are made for the program as it affects higher education :
(a) That there be established in law a national advisory board or commission to the Administrator of Veterans Affairs, to consist of nine members named by the President of the United States for overlapping terms of 6 years each. The Commissioner of Education, or the head of the Division of Higher Education, ex officio, should be a member of the Board. The other eight members would be named by the President from panels of three names submitted by each educational organization national in scope, whose membership is based on institutional affiliation, with the proviso that not more than one nominee shall be chosen from the panel submitted by any such organization unless the name of the nominee also appears on the panel of another such organization.
(6) This Board or Commission would have the following responsibilities:
(1) To establish policies and procedures under which selection of veterans for educational payments would be made, on the basis of (a) demonstrated ability, (b) assurance of equitable distribution by States and as between racial groups. Such specifications for the program as are considered essential could be written into law. Otherwise, the decision of the Board as to policies to be followed in selection should be binding on the Administrator, who could contract with or transfer funds to other Federal agencies or State agencies for the necessary administrative expenses of this part of the program.
(2) To review and pass on, prior to their promulgation, any proposed regulations affecting the veteran as a student or in his relationships as a student to institutions of higher education. This extends to such matters as required standards of attendance and progress, interruptions in training, change of course or curriculum or educational objective, transfers between institutions, and the like; but shall not extend to regulations for determining the initial eligibility of the veteran in terms of military service, or covering required evidence of bona fide status as a student in an accredited institution as a requirement for receipt of payment. Regulations within the purview of the Board could be promulgated without prior Board approval only on certification by the Administrator that the regulation in question was considered by him to be essential to the administration of the law, that it had been submitted to the Board with reasonable time for action, and either that it had been rejected by the Board or that the Board had failed to act within a reasonable time.
Promulgation by the Administrator of any regulation on which the Board had voted negatively when it was submitted for approval shall be considered prima facie evidence of intent by the Administrator to nullify the intent of Congress that he shall not interfere in educational matters, and appeal to the Federal courts for determination of the validity of the regulation in the