NEWS: Summary

Officials of the National Education Association say they will seek legislation which would increase by 50 per cent the amount of federal aid alloted for education, and which conceivably could result in aid to private and parochial as well as public schools.

Under the proposal, the bulk of a $1.5 billion annual increase would go directly to the states, with no federal strings attached, provided the funds were used for education.

NEA spokesmen state that under these circumstances, those states that wished to aid parochial schools to some degree would be free to do so. In effect, this would lower from federal to state level the controversial question of government aid to church-related schools.

In the meantime, another plan, announced prematurely last fall by a member of a presidential study group on education and embodying a proposal much the same as the one supported by NEA, is considered dead by the White House, at least for the time being.

Strong controversy developed after the announcement, with many feeling the states might misuse the funds intended for among other things, education.

The proposal would have created a sort of a trust fund of federal money made up of 1 or 2 per cent of the annual federal income tax money. While in part the money would be intended for education in the states, as the states saw fit to use it, it also could be used for health programs and for highways. The unknown and possibly inequitable usage of the funds laid the plan open to controversy.

The NEA plan covers funds for educational purposes only. At least $1.25 billion of the annual $1.5 billion increase would be spent at the sole discretion of the states using the resources, under the NEA proposal. Out of this, spokesmen point out. states that already use some of their locally collected taxes for aiding non-public schools—usually in the form of transportation and textbooks—could apply the federal funds to augment the program without the federal government’s becoming directly involved.

Robert E. McKay, chairman of an influential NEA legislative commission, says the approximate $250 million balance would be intended for the federal impact aid program, whereby school districts affected by the proximity of military installations receive aid for federally connected children using the district’s schools.

He says the NEA urges that the federal funds be divided in this way: 75 per cent to the states according to population; 15 per cent to the most needy states; 10 per cent to states with special needs.

Included under special needs might be assistance to urban and rural slum-area schools, according to McKay. He adds that the NEA would urge that the states use the money for teachers’ salaries, classroom construction, and employment of more teachers to reduce class size.

Protestant Panorama

Southern Baptist Home Mission Board plans pilot projects in high-rise apartments in Atlanta, Chicago, and Dallas. Projects will be church-sponsored, with a minister and his wife placed in an apartment complex and space for a chapel and library rented.

The Salvation Army in the United States will begin a national Centennial Evangelistic Crusade this year on the occasion of the Army’s 100th anniversary.


The Roman Catholic archdiocese of Santa Fe, New Mexico, is becoming a member of the New Mexico Council of Churches, the first such American body to join an interdenominational church council. In Grand Rapids, Michigan, St. Andrew’s Catholic Cathedral joined the area council of churches on an associate basis. First to affiliate on a local level was the Church of the Madalene in Tulsa, Oklahoma, which became a member of the Council of Churches of Greater Tulsa last April.

A Milwaukee theater dropped the scheduled showing of Kiss Me, Stupid, first major Hollywood movie condemned by the Roman Catholic Legion of Decency since the 1950s. Residents of the Soviet zone of Germany will be required to state their religious affiliation for a 1965 general census.

The Eighth Congress of the Yugoslav Communist Party rescinded a long-standing rule that party members must not practice religion, according to reports from Belgrade.

Christian Education

Alaska Methodist University, which admitted its first class of students in 1961. has received full accreditation by the Northwest Association of Secondary and Higher Schools.

Houston Baptist College will dedicate a new library this month in memory of astronaut Theodore C. Freeman, killed in a plane accident October 31.

Andrews University, Seventh-day Adventist school, is building an airport to train missionary pilots near its Berrien Springs, Michigan, campus. The field will be named for the late Tom Dooley, who became famous for his medical work in Laos.

A $2,000,000 science center now under construction at North Park College, Chicago, will be named for the late Dr. Paul Carlson, medical missionary of the Evangelical Covenant Church who was slain by Congolese rebels.

A Nigerian court overthrew the conviction of a Baptist missionary who was charged with “insulting and inciting contempt of the Muslim faith.”

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Dr. James Muilenburg of San Francisco Theological Seminary will serve as Harry Emerson Fosdick Visiting Professor at Union Theological Seminary this year.

Dr. Albert Schweitzer, theologian, philosopher, musician, medical missionary to Africa, and winner of the Nobel Peace prize, celebrates his ninetieth birthday this week.

Dr. H. Wilbert Norton, formerly president of Trinity College, has been appointed professor of missions and church history at the Graduate School of Wheaton College.

They Say

“When a sower goes forth to sow, he does not crowd as many plants together as would be physically possible. Instead, he considers the spacing necessary for healthy plants to grow. Surely the same intelligence and concern is due the human family.”—Methodist Bishop John Wesley Lord, in Together

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