All About the US Office of Education

Posted on Apr 22 2019 - 8:40am by Mark Ryan

The US Office of Education or also known as the Bureau of Education and the Department of Education was a small unit in the federal government of the United States of America within the US Department from 1867 to 1972. But now, it is a cabinet-level department of the US government. This US Department of Education started operating on May 4th, 1980. It was created as the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare. But then, it was split into the Department of Education and the Department of Health and Human Services.

The US Dept of Edu is managed by the US Secretary of Education. This department has under 4000 employees. The 2019 budget supports $129,8 billion in the form of new postsecondary grants, student loans, and work-study assistance in order to help around 11.5 students and their families in order to pay the college fee. Do you want to know more about the US Department of Education? Keep reading.

Inception and Development of The US Department of Education

The US Department of Education was created in on March 2nd, 1867, as the US Department of Education. It uses the same title as another unit it has replaced. An educator named Zalmon Richards played a big role for the Congress to create this US Department of Education. While Henry Barnard was appointed as the first US Commissioner of Education in 1867. On June 30th, 1869, this US Department of Education lost its independent status and became the US Office of Education within the US Department of Interior. It was temporarily renamed as the Bureau of Education from 1870 to 1929. But it remained as the Bureau of Education until 1939 when it was moved to the newly built FSA or Federal Security Agency.

The US Department of Education was in the program called New Deal created by the US 32nd president, Franklin D. Roosevelt, until the setting-up of the Presidential Cabinet-level, the United States Department of Health, Education and Welfare in April 1953, under 33rd President Harry Truman and his newly inaugurated successor, Dwight D. Eisenhower, the 34th chief executive. The personal book collection of Henry Barnard which then was purchased by the US Bureau of Education was the core of what would become the National Library of Education. Henry Barnard resigned on March 15th, 1870. He was replaced by John Eaton who remained as a commissioner until 1886.

In 1870, this unit started to be named as the US Bureau of Education. But in 1929, it was brought back to its original name the Office of Education. In 1979, under the government of the US 39th President, Jimmy Carter, the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare was split and became the Department of Education and the Department of Health and Human Services.

The Functions of the US Department of Education

The original non-cabinet-level US Department of Education was built in order to provide educational information for the state and local education authorities. Many of which had been built and developed for decades on the state, city, town, and county levels. The collecting of education statistics had already started in several parts of Europe. The US Office of Education was built in order to fulfill the needs to collect statistical information on the educational institutions which are growing fast in the United States of America. Moreover, histories and descriptive articles, pamphlets, reports, and books also coordinate with the universities.

The reformers, especially the radical republicans and progressive and liberal democrats wished that the office of education would become a powerful and strong federal agency. But they were frustrated in every chance by the Congress, that did not or want to trespass on rights of the states and local jurisdictions in the city, town, and county levels. At that time, the states’ rights were still powerful, despite the recent Civil War. Several other domestics and foreign crises would be needed in the next decades and national policy to the forefront to make up for increasingly embarrassing shortfalls in a comparison between America and overseas educational programs, especially in Europe.

The Office Education was a unit of the US Department of Interior. This is why this office was under the supervisory of the Secretary of the Interior. The Office of Education did not have any power to control the actions of the education institutions. Sometimes, during the first decades of the office’s existence, some attempts were made in order to be able to change the name. Several names such as board, office, department, and bureau were considered to use. But in 1873, a bill was introduced that then changed the name of the office into the US Bureau of Education and Statistics. The Commissioner of Education was required to prepare an annual report that was printed and given to the US Senators and Representatives which are the members of the Congress.

In 1875, 20.000 copies of the report for 1874 was printed, which 5.000 copies for the use of the Senate members, 10.000 copies for the use of the House of Representative members, and the other 5.000 copies for the use of the Commissioner of Education and their Office. The US Office of Education collected information about various educational facilities, such as the ones being built. For example, the popular Carlisle Indian Industrial School at Carlisle, Pennsylvania in the east and near western reservations. It is purposed to give education and agricultural or vocational training to American Indians in which there had already been historically developed a direct and prominent national Federal role and obligation towards the treatment and education of Indians as well as all of the facilities in all of the other places.

Dissolution and Legacy of the Office of Education

In 1972, the public law gave the repeal of the law that had built the US Office of Education. The repeal started to be applied on July 1st, 1972. This office of education had a unifying impact on various educational institutions in the US. For you who are interested to work in this office, you can look for the department of education recruitment online or department for education jobs.

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