Overview and Mission Statement
The Department of Education’s mission is to promote student achievement and preparation for global competitiveness by fostering educational excellence and ensuring equal access.
ED was created in 1980 by combining offices from several federal agencies. ED’s 4,400 employees and $68 billion budget are dedicated to:
- Establishing policies on federal financial aid for education, and distributing as well as monitoring those funds.
- Collecting data on America’s schools and disseminating research.
- Focusing national attention on key educational issues.
- Prohibiting discrimination and ensuring equal access to education.
Budget and Performance
- Budget Office
- Annual Reports
- Strategic Plan
- Open Government Initiative
What We Do
- The Federal Role in Education
- An Overview of the U.S. Department of Education
- ED Initiatives
- ED Programs
- Recursos en español
- ED Publications Online
- Order ED Publications
- Research Publications and Reports
- Education Resources Information Center (ERIC)
Laws & Guidance
Legislation, regulations, guidance, and other policy documents can be found here for the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), and other topics.
Please note that in the U.S., the federal role in education is limited. Because of the Tenth Amendment, most education policy is decided at the state and local levels. So, if you have a question about a policy or issue, you may want to check with the relevant organization in your state or school district.
Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA), as amended
- Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) Information page
- ESEA Flexibility: Information about flexibility from certain No Child Left Behind requirements that ED is offering to states.
- Text of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, as amended by ESSA and the National Defense Authorization Act, 2017:
Introductory materials — Title I — Title II — Title III — Title IV — Title V — Title VI — Title VII — Title VIII
- Text of No Child Left Behind Act: For certain ESEA programs, the requirements of NCLB apply through the 2016-2017 school year.
- Guidance and Regulations
FERPA (Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act)
- Disability Discrimination (Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act)
- Sex Discrimination (Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972)
- Race and National Origin Discrimination (Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964)
- Dear Colleague Letters and Other Policy Guidance
IDEA (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act)
WIOA (Workforce Innovation and Opportunities Act)
Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended through P.L. 114–95
- Text of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (PDF, 505KB)
Higher Education Act
- Text of the Higher Education Opportunity Act
- Higher Education Opportunity Act Information Page
- Postsecondary Policy Initiatives
- Dear Partner/Colleague Letters
- Negotiated Rulemaking
Regulations and Rulemaking
- Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review
- Electronic Code of Federal Regulations (eCFR), Title 34, Education
- Recent Federal Register Documents