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Two Views of the Federal Role in Education

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President Carter's

Findings

(1) education is fundamental to the development of individual citizens and the progress of the Nation;

(2) there is a continuing need to ensure equal access for all Americans to educational opportunities of a high quality, and such educational opportunities should not be denied because of race, creed, color, national origin, or sex;

(3) parents have the primary responsibility for the education of their children, and States, localities, and private institutions have the primary responsibility for supporting that parental role;

(4) in our Federal system, the primary public responsibility for education is reserved respectively to the States and the local school systems and other instrumentalities of the States;

(5) the American people benefit from a diversity of educational settings, including public and private schools, libraries, museums and other institutions, the workplace, the community, and the home;

(6) the importance of education is increasing as new technologies and alternative approaches to traditional education are considered, as society becomes more complex, and as equal opportunities in education and employment are promoted;

(7) there is a need for improvement in the management and coordination of Federal education programs to support more effectively State, local, and private institutions, students, and parents in carrying out their educational responsibilities;

(8) the dispersion of education programs across a large number of Federal agencies has led to fragmented, duplicative, and often inconsistent Federal policies relating to education;

(9) Presidential and public consideration of issues relating to Federal education programs is hindered by the present organizational position of education programs in the executive branch of the Government; and

(10) there is no single, full-time, Federal education official directly accountable to the President, the Congress, and the people.

Purposes

sec 102. The Congress declares that the establishment of a Department of Education is in the public interest, will promote the general welfare of the United States, will help ensure that education issues receive proper treatment at the Federal level, and will enable the Federal Government to coordinate its education activities more effectively. Therefore, the purposes of this Act are--

(1) to strengthen the Federal commitment to ensuring access to equal educational opportunity for every individual;

(2) to supplement and complement the efforts of States, the local school systems and other instrumentalities of the States, the private sector, public and private educational instutitions, public and private nonprofit educational research institutions, community-based organizations, parents, and students to improve the quality of education;

(3) to encourage the increased involvement of the public, parents, and students, in Federal education programs;

(4) to promote improvements in the quality and usefulness of education through federally supported research, evaluation, and sharing of information;

(5) to improve the coordination of Federal education programs;

(6) to improve the management and efficiency of Federal education activities, especially with respect to the process, procedures, and administrative structures for the dispersal of Federal funds, as well as the reduction of unnecessary and duplicative burdens and constraints, including unnecessary paperwork, on the recipients of Federal funds; and

(7) to increase the accountability of Federal education programs to the President, the Congress, and the public.


President Reagan's

Findings and Purposes

sec 101. (a) The Congress finds that:

(1) parents have the primary responsibility for the education of their children, and States, localities, and educational institutions have the responsibility for supporting that parental role;

(2) as reflected in the constitutions of the States, the primary public responsibility for education belongs to the States, local school systems, and other instrumentalities of the States;

(3) a Cabinet-level Department of Education threatens to preempt the role of localities and the States in determining policy for education;

(4) the role of the Federal Government in education should be minimal;

(5) there is a need for efficient administration and coordination of Federal education programs to support more effectively State, local, and private institutions, students, and parents of students in carrying out their educational responsibilities; and

(6) there is a need for a single Federal official responsible solely for Federal education programs and directly accountable to the President.

(b) It is the purpose of this Act to terminate the Department of Education, to provide for a Foundation for Education Assistance responsible for administering programs of assistance to education, and to transfer particular programs and authorities to other Federal agencies.

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