What Does the U.S. Department of Education Do?
The U.S. Department of Education (ED) is responsible for maintaining policies related to education and improving the educational system. Find out more about this department, including its specialized areas of focus below.
U.S. Department of Education Responsibilities
The U.S. Department of Education (ED) operates with the goal of ensuring education in the United States is of a good quality and fairly accessible by everyone. The ED has specific areas that it focuses on in order to reach its main goal. These areas include creating policies about financial aid and distributing financial aid, collecting data on education in the U.S., bringing attention to key education issues and preventing discrimination.
1. Provides Financial Aid
The ED provides federal aid to different programs based on merit or individual financial need (www.ed.gov). It also provides funds to unique populations, such as those of Native American descent and those with special needs and set regulations that determine how these funding programs will run. The money can go to different programs or specific individuals, including students applying for college.
2. Collects Educational Data
When schools undergo educational reform, it's generally initiated by the Department of Education, which studies educational trends and techniques to determine what works. Some of the areas that the ED collects data on include effective teaching techniques and educational innovations. The ED also explores ways of improving education in specific subject areas, such as mathematics. The research and statistics are sent to teachers, parents, policymakers and the public.
3. Identifies Education Issues
The U.S. Department of Education recognizes issues in education, makes them public and works to find potential solutions for them. This helps other education-related organizations decide which issues are the most important, so they can be researched and trends can be studied. Through the ED, you can read about the condition of education in the U.S. and analyze education statistics. In this area, the ED collaborates with other professionals in education and makes improvements in both programs and policies.