ABSTRACT

This chapter reviews the contrast between political rhetoric on aid to education and federal programs that rendered direct aid to schools, notably the Works Progress Administration. Various alphabet agencies such as the Civilian Conservation Corps, National Youth Administration Works Progress Administration (WPA) and Public Works Administration either had educational components, or worked in conjunction with public schools. The schools appeared unwilling or incapable of extending the mantle of legitimacy beyond their traditional programs for a select age group: the young. In similar fashion, the American Association of School Administrators went on record in 1939 opposed to federal controls or to the existing “emergency” educational agencies with the likelihood of “two public school systems.” If the WPA educational programs came close to implicitly articulating a family and school social policy, there was one program that appeared to be a curiosity. William Allen White’s Emporia Gazette was more than a trifle miffed at the national ruckus over Kansas schools.