Education, United States Department of, executive department of the federal government responsible for advising on educational plans and policies, providing assistance for education, and carrying out educational research. It was established (1867) as an independent government agency and then transferred (1869) to the Dept. of the Interior as the Bureau of Education. In 1939 the bureau, by executive order, was transferred to the Federal Security Agency, which in 1953 became the Dept. of Health, Education and Welfare. It became an independent department in 1979. Within the Dept. of Education are offices of elementary and secondary education, postsecondary education, special education and rehabilitative services, bilingual education and minority languages, vocational and adult education, civil rights, and educational research and improvement. The department also administers funds for Gallaudet and Howard universities, the National Technical Institute for the Deaf, and the American Printing House for the Blind.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.