As one of the cabinet-level department, the Education department plays an important role in shaping the future generation of the United States. Being established in the era of President Jimmy Carter, this US Dept of Edu now is operated by more than 40,000 employees. The department also receives a budget that reaches $68 billion per year. But what is the department actually do? And how was it established?
The History of the US Department of Education
The history of the United States Department of Education can be traced back to 1867. The department was previously called the US Office of Education. Being demoted to an office back in 1968, the department was only considered as an agency. It was only a minor bureau under the Department of the Interior and had no representation in the president’s cabinet. That makes the department only has a relatively small role in the country. It was in 1979 when the former US president, Jimmy Carter, decided to split Department of Health, Education, and Welfare with the Department of Education stood alone as an independent department. The act was signed by President Carter and changed it into law on October 17, 1979. From the time being, the US Dept Edu plays a more significant role in the president’s cabinet.
The Functions of the Department
The United States Department of Education comes with a lot of functions. However, the main function of the department is to establish policy for administering. The department also has a responsibility to coordinate most federal aids to education. It also has a task to enforce federal education laws related to civil rights and privacy, as well as gather data on the United States’ schools. However, the duties of the department do not include establish colleges or schools. In addition, the department does not have direct public jurisdictional control either to the accreditation of the schools in the US. This is because the educational system applied in the country is highly decentralized. In this way, the Department of Education can’t contribute in determining the educational standard or curricula in the country. As a result, the accreditation of educational institutions in the United States is determined by using an informal private process. Another primary function of the US Dept of Edu is making sure that runaway and homeless youth in the country will get a proper education. That is why the department works with federal partners and becomes a member of the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness.