Mrs. CHISHOLM. Just one question. You have indicated that many of the Italian youth have dropped out of school. I was wondering about this because I am finding it is pertinent to other matters that some of these youth are dropping out of our school system, not necessarily because of the language barrier but because of the school system itself. The sense of attunement and sensitivity of needs of these youngsters causes tremendous frustrations and causes many of them to leave school.

In your community, can you establish for this committee that the dropping out of the American-Italian youth is based primarily on the language difficulty which has not been given its due attention or is it a combination of other factors which have to do with the lack of the kind of teachers necessary to address themselves to the youth?

Mr. MASTORELLI. I would be a liar if I said anything else. It is not primarily a language situation. It is part of the curriculum, the heritage. I will be fighting for this, but until lately, I hated the word "discrimination," and I notice strangely our youngsters who come here not knowing anything about this. I am addressing myself to Italio Americans at this point. They are feeling the effect of the media, the newspapers and everything else. As soon as he has "i-o-u" in his last name, he is not a good boy, belongs to the Mafia, or what


Mrs. CHISHOLM. Mr. Biaggi and myself come from New York and he has been one of the leading Italians who has been trying to do a great deal insofar as this type of discrimination, as to the ending of people's names. I understand what you are saying.

Mr. BIAGGI. The chairlady shares my views and has been a sympathetic supporter of our views because what we are talking about is something fundamental.

Mr. MASTORELLI. I am just sorry there are only two people here to hear this. We all know about discrimination and I want to compliment the two of you for your views in the past and your assistance and everything else. If you keep that up, it will make for a better America.

Mrs. CHISHOLM. We want to thank you very much for your appearance before this committee, Mr. Mastorelli.

The committee stands adjourned.

[Whereupon, at 12:10 p.m., the subcommittee was adjourned until Thursday, March 19 at 9:30 a.m.]






Washington, D.C.

The subcommittee met at 9:55 a.m., pursuant to recess, in room 2175, Rayburn House Office Building, Hon. Carl D. Perkins [chairman of the committee] presiding.

Present: Representatives Perkins, Meeds, Chisholm, Bell, and Benitez.

Staff members present: Jack Jennings, counsel; Eydie Gaskins, special assistant; and John Lee, minority legislative assistant.

Chairman PERKINS. The committee will come to order. A quorum is present.

First, let me state that it is a great pleasure to welcome our distinguished witnesses here this morning. I am particularly pleased that the State school superintendent of California is present. Wilson Riles is one of our great educators in America.

Back in 1967, when I took over as chairman of the House Committee on Education and Labor, I was in search for someone whom I felt had the best compensatory education program throughout America. I had known and observed Wilson Riles in 1965 and 1966 through his appearances before this committee. I decided that he was the man that I needed to assist me in running this committee, and I called on Wilson Riles to come to Washington. I not only called him once, but I called him numerous times. He finally flatly turned down Carl Perkins. I thought his contributions to the country were so great that no one could take his place here at that time. I was delighted that he was later elected State school superintendent of the great State of California. I have watched his record there over a period of years and, in my judgment, it is unsurpassed anywhere in America.

It gives me great pleasure at this time to welcome Dr. Riles. I am not going to make the introduction of Dr. Riles, though, I am going to yield to my colleague here, Al Bell. But, as I have stated, he is one of the best state school superintendents in America and I believe that his efforts in behalf of those children needing bilingual education are the best efforts of any State superintendent in the country. Since Wilson Riles became State superintendent, he has lent hist strong support to the State legislation in California which now provides $5 million for bilingual education. This year he has given the support of the State department of education to new legislation which would provide $15 million for bilingual education. He has also

formed the first bilingual education task force within the State of California to develop State leadership in bilingual education and to provide technical assistance to selected California school districts. Other States look to California for its leadership in behalf of bilingual education and they, in particular, look to the strong leadership of Wilson Riles.

Let me say in conclusion that Wilson Riles helped us formulate from the national level the adult basic education program and many other educational programs, including the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965. No one made greater contributions than he. It is a great pleasure for me, Congressman Bell, to have you welcome your State school superintendent here. I now yield to you to introduce your distinguished school superintendent.

Mr. BELL. Mr. Chairman, you just made my speech. But I concur in everything you said about our great superintendent of public instruction, Wilson Riles, and I want to say that he certainly is the leading educator in the Nation, and I must also say that he is one of the major political figures in our State. He is a major governmental figure in California and is one that we all look toward for leadership in all areas of education and in many other things, too.

It gives me a great pleasure, Mr. Chairman, to introduce to the committee our great educator, Wilson Riles.

Chairman PERKINS. I notice you have a prepared statement. Without objection your statement will be inserted in the record and you may proceed in any manner you prefer.



Dr. RILES. Thank you, Hon. Chairman Perkins, members of the committee. I would like to proceed by saying that I have a great admiration for Chairman Perkins as one of the fairest, most persistent and convincing chairmen that we have had in this field of education. I am honored to be able to testify before this committee.

Of course, Congressman Bell has been a supporter of education for a long time and I just want to give you my thanks and appreciation.

Chairman PERKINS. Likewise Gus Hawkins.

Dr. RILES. And I think Mr. Burton also is a very strong supporter from California.

Chairman PERKINS. I want to mention Phil Burton likewise.

Dr. RILES. I would like to introduce a member of my staff, Dr. Xavier Del Buono, who is associate superintendent of public instruction in California, and he will share with me and pick up any specific questions or detailed questions that the committee may have.

I want to thank you for this opportunity to testify on the issue of bilingual education. The knowledge and the experience we have gained over the past 7 years of Federal support for bilingual education, plus our own State program, have given us some insights which we believe are relevant to these proceedings.

I would like first to call your attention to the background of this problem as it exists. The U.S. Civil Rights Commission has recently released its report on the survey it conducted. That survey gives a rather grim picture of the need for bilingual education. Highlights from the Commission's report indicate:

The limited or non-English-speaking child has not fared well in this country in his educational career. For example, the reading levels of Spanish-speaking children have been consistently lower than those of Anglo children.

Thirty-seven percent of Mexican-American children in California will fail to graduate from high school. Six percent of these students have already left school by the eighth grade.

The enrollment of non-English background students in institutions of higher education is also disproportionately below their percentage of the population.

In the California State University and college system only 5 percent of the student body is Mexican-American despite the fact that this group comprises 19 percent of the State's population.

California has a deficiency in educational personnel prepared to teach the non-English-speaking child. Institutions of higher education have for years ignored the needs of this particular student population in their student training program. Only 2 percent— 3,500-of California's teachers have Spanish surnames.

Until recent years there was an inordinately large number of nonor limited-English-speaking children in classes for the mentally retarded and educationally handicapped due to the language-related tests used for screening and placement.

These examples reflect past mistakes in addressing the educational needs of those who speak a language other than English-mistakes we are now attempting to correct.

We are vitally concerned that we have accurate assessment of the extent and characteristics of the limited or non-English-speaking population. We recently developed a language dominance index to facilitate reporting by school districts of the exact numbers of children who speak a language other than English.

While the figures may be adjusted in future years when greater sophistication in determining language dominance has been developed, they currently indicate that we have approximately 50,000 children in our public schools with no comprehension at all of the English language and approximately 150,000 more with but limited comprehension of English. The majority of these children speak Spanish, Portuguese, Tagalog, Cantonese, or Japanese at home and are unable to function in the English environment of the classroom. Every day in California additional non-English-speaking people enter the State from Mexico, Hong Kong, and other areas. To ignore the educational needs of these children is to deny them that which is the fundamental right of every child-equal educational opportunity. While the Mexican-American child is the one who comes first to mind when we speak of those who have little or no fluency in English, our language dominance index verifies our belief that there are many children of other backgrounds who come to us with on comprehension of the English language.

For example, the recent unanimous decision of the U.S. Supreme Court in the case of Lau v. Nichols highlights the tragic situation of

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