20 USC 3402 - Congressional declaration of purpose

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 chapter 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 institutions, 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;

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(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.