Chairman Defends Report Of Expansion Committee

McCloskey Explains Disagreement

Even if it could not present a unified policy recommendation, the Faculty Committee on the size of the College did dispel "all uneasy feeling" that an important issue was slipping by without being noticed. Robert G. McCloskey professor of Government and chairman of the committee, said yesterday.

In his informal report to the Faculty two days ago, McCloskey emphasized at the committee had been unable to agree on the basic question of whether the College enrollment should be raised. But he said yesterday that " the range of disagreement was small"--that not even the most firmly pro-expansionist members of the committee had wanted to enlarge the College by more than 500 undergraduates in the next ten years.

Disagreement in the committee, McCloskey said, had focused on the "ineligible" aspects of expansion: such issues as a possible deterioration in the "atmosphere and tone" of the College if it grew any larger.

The "tangible" aspects of expansion--shortages of classrooms and laboratories, crowding in the libraries--would not be so troublesome, according to McCloskey, who pointed out that the College could dispose of these difficulties simply by building more facilities.

It was concern over the "intangibles" that led McCloskey to speak against expansion before the faculty. He brought out another recommendations yesterday: that the Committee on Educational Policy devote a full meeting each year to cutting the size of the incoming freshman class. He felt this procedure would ensure that continued Faculty attention to given to the problem.

Dean Picks Size Now

At present, the Dean of the Faculty picks the target size for each incoming class. Several months ago President Pusey, as acting Dean, set the target figure for next year's freshmen at 1185, which was 15 lower than the previous year's figure. He mentioned at the time of his decision that the decrease was "a concession to the Masters." Since then, however, an abnormally high rate of acceptances has increased the size of the class to 1220. McCloskey's committee was created in November of 1960, during a meeting in which the Faculty rescinded a 27-year old recommendation limiting the size of any coming freshmen class to 1000 students.

Although no one objected to rescinding to specific limit, many professors fearing that the possible effects of a graduate increase in the size of the College had not been thought through. It was for this reason that McCloskey moved that a Committee be formed.

Report Held UP

The committee met periodically that winter, and hoped to report back to the Faculty during the spring of 1961. But differences of opinion sprang up, and in fall the committee was still meeting. During January and February, several of the members who felt strongly one way or the other about expansion exchanged written drafts explaining their views, but since "no one seemed to be persuading anyone" McCloskey decided that the best course would be to throw the question before the Faculty for general discussion.

The members of the committee, besides McCloskey, were David D. Perkins associate professor of English; Elliott Perkins '13, Master of Lowell House; Seymour Slive, professor of Fine Arts; Richard T. Gill '49, Allston Burr Senior of Leverett House; Seymour E. Harris '10, Lucius N. Littauer Professor of Political Economy; Samuel H. Beer, Professor of Government; Mrs. Bunting; and Dean Monro.