Elite vs. Mass Education

Archive Report

Mass Education and Waste of Brainpower

Orbiting of the first Russian sputnik last October awakened the people of the United States to the fact that this country's advanced position in scientific research and technological accomplishment was open to effective challenge by its chief rival for world leadership. Government officials and study groups for years had been sounding warnings about the short supply of American scientists and engineers in contrast to an impressively large annual turnout of scientists and engineers from Soviet universities and technical schools,1 But it took the spectacular Russian “firsts” with earth satellites to arouse and alarm the American public.

The Eisenhower administration moved to meet the Soviet challenge by proposing a program of federal aid to strengthen teaching facilities—particularly in science and mathematics—and ...

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