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Published in Print: December 15, 1999, as Before Their Time

Before Their Time

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In 1959, the National Education Association asked the nation's governors to prophesy about education at the dawn of the new millennium. Below are excerpts from some of those leaders.

Alaska Gov. Hugh J. Wade:
"Polar research will be of increasing importance to the world. Alaska has the location and the resources."

Arkansas Gov. Orval E. Faubus:
"The real solution of educational problems will lie in a return to hard work on the part of the student."

California Gov. Edmund G. "Pat" Brown:
"There will be increasingly higher standards of selection and training for teachers, and an increasingly higher standard of service will be rendered by those on the job."

Colorado Gov. Steve McNichols:
"I am sure that by 1999 we will have one of the top half-dozen school systems in the country."

Delaware Gov. J. Caled Boggs:
"The school day may be longer to shorten the span of years for the accomplishments of one's life's purposes."

Guam Gov. Richard Barrett Lowe:
"Universal use of English language in all homes will enable all schoolchildren to make stateside educational progress."

Iowa Gov. Herschel C. Loveless:
"It may be expected that the standards ofpreparation required of teachers will be substantially higher in the State than at present; however, it may be expected also that the type of preparation will tend to place increased emphasis on content rather than methods."

Kentucky Gov. Albert B. Chandler:
"I firmly believe that our educational system will resist all collectivist tendencies and will be strengthened in a manner consistent with the finest of American democratic traditions and will exist to serve a democracy and not an omnipotent national state."

Maryland Gov. J. Millard Tawes:
"Greater use of visual aids will take place in our methods, and television will undoubtedly play a major role."

Massachusetts Gov. Foster Furcolo:
"Perhaps the most significant change will be the necessary increase in the number of students anticipating a college education and the number of students who will be accommodated in the next three or four decades."

Minnesota Gov. Orville L. Freeman:
"We can expect more vocationally oriented high schools, curriculums which equip the handicapped child to contribute substantially to the good of his community and curriculums which develop the talents of vigorous growth of higher education, based on an expanded system of junior colleges integrated into a highly developed senior college program."

Montana Gov. J. Hugo Aronson:
"If control of education is still in the hands of the people at home in 1999, then the 21st century will be better off for it."

Nebraska Gov. Ralph G. Brooks:
"Transportation by anti-gravity machine, or a similar device, will permit students to participate in interplanetary travel, thus making the Universe the new classroom."

Nevada Gov. Grant Sawyer:
"Looking to this future, we know that our most pressing obligation will be to provide a large number of new schools of modern and adaptable design in order to keep pace with population increases."

North Dakota Gov. John E. Davis:
"In spite of the fact that during the last forty years education has not progressed as far or developed as much as some other institutions, such as transportation and communication, I anticipate that during the next forty years public education will parallel strides forward along with transportation, communication, war missiles and disease control, to mention a few."

Pennsylvania Gov. David L. Lawrence:
"The National Defense Education Act will have a tremendous impact upon modern foreign languages. Long before this capsule is opened, perhaps more than one-third of the citizens of the State will be bilingual."

South Dakota Gov. Ralph Herseth:
"Much progress in school district reorganization is hoped for. This should reduce the number of school districts and create larger districts that are capable of offering better educational privileges to the students of the state."

South Carolina Gov. Ernest F. Hollings:
"In the broader scope of international affairs and the struggle with militant communism, it is the particular duty of each state to move ahead to the utmost in preparing the young people for their individual and collective roles in the preservation of our free way of life."

Washington Gov. Albert D. Rosellini:
"School books will be better written and, thus, easier to understand."

West Virginia Gov. Cecil H. Underwood:
"In many respects, the learner of the future will be his own teacher."

Vol. 19, Issue 16, Page 7

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