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Francis Keppel '38, dean of the Faculty of Education, may be the Kennedy Administration's next Commissioner of Education, CRIMSON sources in Washington indicated yesterday.
Contacted late last night, Keppel denied any knowledge of an appointment. Asked about the rumor. Keppel pointed out that "there are rumors about lots of people." He said he couldn't comment on this sort of matter, but that his "hesitancy to comment doesn't indicate anything."
The post has lain open since the middle of the summer, when Sterling M. Murrin resigned to return to teaching duties as a philosophy professor at the University of Utah. Murrin had left Utah to become commissioner in early 1961.
Before Murrin was appointed, the position of Commissioner of Education had been primarily ceremonial. Murrin, however, attempted to turn the post into an active one, and he worked energetically for reform in several different aspects of the country's educational system. Though not always successful, he won extensive praise in Washington and was generally considered to be the best Commissioner of Education since the '40's.
Murrin left the position because he preferred teaching to working in a bureaucracy.
Keppel is a member in the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and of Century Association, as well as Phi Beta Kappa. He served as assistant Dean of the College from 1939 until 1941, before entering the armed services. He has held his present position with the School of Education since 1948.
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