Blog

Your Education Road Map

Politics K-12®

ESSA. Congress. State chiefs. School spending. Elections. Education Week reporters keep watch on education policy and politics in the nation’s capital and in the states. Read more from this blog.

Federal

Trump Team May Combine Innovation, K-12 Offices, Advocates Say

By Alyson Klein — January 23, 2018 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

The Trump administration is seriously considering incorporating the office of innovation and improvement into the U.S. Department of Education’s broader office of elementary and secondary education, advocates say.

This isn’t a sure thing yet. But it seems like a strong possibility for a number of reasons. First off, the White House has made it clear that it wants to reorganize federal agencies to get rid of unnecessary or duplicative offices.

President Donald Trump hasn’t yet tapped anyone for the post of assistant secretary of innovation and improvement yet. But he did nominate Frank Brogan, a former Florida state chief and lieutenant governor, as assistant secretary of elementary and secondary education. It’s easy to imagine someone with Brogan’s background being put in charge of both K-12 policy and innovation.

And, given U.S. Secretary of Education DeVos’ focus lately on “rethinking education,” it’s also easy to imagine her making the case that innovation shouldn’t be sectioned off into a single office—it should be infused throughout the department.

Unlike other offices within the Education Department, the office of innovation and improvement isn’t enshrined in legislation. It was created back in 2002 by then-U.S. Secretary of Education Rod Paige to help promote the Bush administration school choice agenda. Nina Rees, who is now the executive director of the National Alliance of Public Charter Schools, was the first head of the office. There was speculation that its influence would decline when Rees left the department in early 2006.

But when the Obama administration came into office in early 2009, the office was tasked with implementation of some marquee programs. Those included the Investing in Innovation grants, which helped nurture promising ideas at the district level, and the Race to the Top District grants, which focused on personalized learning. Obama’s first leader for the office, Jim Shelton, a former Gates Foundation official, later went on to serve as deputy secretary. (He’s now heading up K-12 work at the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative.)

Right now, the office is in charge of programs dealing with parent involvement, charter schools, private schools, teacher quality, and the Education Innovation and Research program. (That’s the successor to i3). More here.

Photo: Swikar Patel for Education Week.


Follow us on Twitter at @PoliticsK12.

Related Tags:

Commenting has been disabled on edweek.org effective Sept. 8. Please visit our FAQ section for more details. To get in touch with us visit our contact page, follow us on social media, or submit a Letter to the Editor.


Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Teaching Webinar
What’s Next for Teaching and Learning? Key Trends for the New School Year
The past 18 months changed the face of education forever, leaving teachers, students, and families to adapt to unprecedented challenges in teaching and learning. As we enter the third school year affected by the pandemic—and
Content provided by Instructure
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Curriculum Webinar
How Data and Digital Curriculum Can Drive Personalized Instruction
As we return from an abnormal year, it’s an educator’s top priority to make sure the lessons learned under adversity positively impact students during the new school year. Digital curriculum has emerged from the pandemic
Content provided by Kiddom
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Equity & Diversity Webinar
Leadership for Racial Equity in Schools and Beyond
While the COVID-19 pandemic continues to reveal systemic racial disparities in educational opportunity, there are revelations to which we can and must respond. Through conscientious efforts, using an intentional focus on race, school leaders can
Content provided by Corwin

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Federal Feds Add Florida to List of States Under Investigation Over Restrictions on Mask Mandates
The Education Department told the state Sept. 10 it will probe whether its mask rule is violating the rights of students with disabilities.
3 min read
Surrounded by lawmakers, Florida Gov.Ron DeSantis speaks at the end of a legislative session on April 30, 2021, in Tallahassee, Fla.
Surrounded by lawmakers, Florida Gov.Ron DeSantis speaks at the end of a legislative session on April 30, 2021, in Tallahassee, Fla.
Wilfredo Lee/AP
Federal How Biden Will Mandate Teacher Vaccines, Testing in Some States That Don't Require Them
President Joe Biden's COVID-19 plan will create new teacher vaccination and testing requirements in some states through worker safety rules.
4 min read
Nurse Sara Muela, left, administers the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine to educator Rebecca Titus at a vaccination site setup for teachers and school staff at the Berks County Intermediate Unit in Reading, Pa., on March 15, 2021.
Nurse Sara Muela administers a COVID-19 vaccine to educator Rebecca Titus at a vaccination site for at the Berks County Intermediate Unit in Reading, Pa.
Matt Rourke/AP
Federal Biden Pushes Schools to Expand COVID-19 Testing, Get More Teachers Vaccinated
President Joe Biden set teacher vaccine requirements for federally operated schools as part of a new effort to drive down COVID's spread.
7 min read
President Joe Biden speaks in the State Dining Room at the White House, Thursday, Sept. 9, 2021, in Washington. Biden is announcing sweeping new federal vaccine requirements affecting as many as 100 million Americans in an all-out effort to increase COVID-19 vaccinations and curb the surging delta variant.
President Joe Biden in a speech from the White House announces sweeping new federal vaccine requirements and other efforts in an renewed effort to stem the COVID-19 pandemic.
Andrew Harnik/AP
Federal Education Department Opens Civil Rights Probes in 5 States That Ban School Mask Mandates
The move on behalf of students with disabilities deepens the fight over masks between the Biden administration and GOP governors.
4 min read
Kindergarten students sit in their classroom on the first day of in-person learning at Maurice Sendak Elementary School in Los Angeles on April 13, 2021.
Kindergarten students sit in their classroom on the first day of in-person learning at Maurice Sendak Elementary School in Los Angeles in April 2021.
Jae C. Hong/AP