Mondale one-ups Reagan with education remarks

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In an example of political one-upmanship, presidential candidate Walter Mondale held a news conference four hours before President Reagan was due to arrive here.

Former Vice-President Mondale, the early front-runner for the Democratic presidential nomination, declared that Mr. Reagan ''has failed the test of national leadership'' in education. Reagan flew to Mr. Mondale's home state to promote his policy of improving education with a minimum of federal help, but Mondale beat him to the punch.

Reagan arranged to participate in a public forum on the National Commission on Excellence in Education report that found a ''rising tide of mediocrity'' in the nation's educational system.

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