The U.S. Government provides support for English learners (ELs) through the U.S. Department of Education and also through programs housed in the Department of Health and Human Services. U.S. Government offices exist to disseminate funding, enforce policy and legislation, and monitor for compliance. They also provide technical assistance as part of their role in implementing federal legislation and policy.
The United States Department of Education (ED) is funded by Congress to promote student achievement by establishing policies, disseminating funding, monitoring the use of the funds, collecting data and overseeing research in education. ED also enforces federal laws prohibiting discrimination in educational programs.
The Office of English Language Acquisition (OELA) 400 Maryland Avenue, SW Washington, DC 20202 OELA provides national leadership to help ensure that ELs and immigrant students attain English language proficiency and academic achievement and assists in building the nation’s capacity in critical foreign languages.
The Office for Civil Rights (OCR) 400 Maryland Avenue, SW Washington, DC 20202 OCR enforces several federal civil rights laws that prohibit discrimination in programs or activities that receive federal financial assistance from the Department of Education.
The Office of Elementary and Secondary Education (OESE) 400 Maryland Avenue, SW Washington, DC 20202 OESE assists state and local education agencies to improve the achievement of elementary and secondary school students through the administration of federal education programs. While OESE serves ELs in all programs in which they qualify, there are a number of programs that more specifically address the needs of ELs:
The Office of Indian Education (OIE) OIE supports local educational agencies, Indian tribes and organizations, postsecondary institutions, and other entities in meeting the unique educational and culturally related academic needs of American Indians and Alaska Native students so that they can achieve the same challenging state standards as all students.
The Office of Migrant Education (OME) OME provides leadership, technical assistance, and financial support to improve the educational opportunities and academic success of migrant children, youth, agricultural workers and fishers, and their families. The OME administers grant programs that provide academic and supportive services to the children of families who migrate to find work in the agricultural and fishing industries.
Division of Adult Education and Literacy The Division of Adult Education and Literacy (DAEL) promotes programs that help American adults get the basic skills they need to be productive workers, family members, and citizens.
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Offices
The Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) ORR provides funding and services for organizations that assist with refugee resettlement. Funding through the ORR Refugee School Impact Grants goes for K–12 education.
The Office of Head Start Head Start is a national program that promotes school readiness by enhancing the social and cognitive development of children through the provision of educational, health, nutritional, social and other services to enrolled children and families.
White House Offices
White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanic Americans The objectives of the Initiative, located within ED, are to increase educational opportunities, improve educational outcomes, and deliver a complete and competitive education for all Hispanic Americans. The Initiative advances a strategic policy and outreach agenda to tackle these critical education challenges: improving availability of and access to high quality early learning programs for Hispanic children; dramatically increasing the number of Hispanic high school graduates; and ensuring more Hispanics students enroll in and more importantly, complete college.
White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for African Americans The Initiative, located wihin ED, supports the President’s desire to restore the country to its role as the global leader in education, to strengthen the nation by improving educational outcomes for African Americans of all ages, and to help ensure that all African Americans receive an education that properly prepares them for college, productive careers, and satisfying lives.
White House Initiative on American Indian and Alaska Native Education The Initiative, located within ED, seeks to support activities that will strengthen the Nation by expanding education opportunities and improving education outcomes for all American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) students. It is committed to furthering tribal self-determination and ensuring AI/AN students, at all levels of education, have an opportunity to learn their Native languages and histories, receive complete and competitive educations, preparing them for college, careers, and productive and satisfying lives.
White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders The Initiative works collaboratively with the White House Office of Public Engagement and the designated Federal agencies to increase Asian American and Pacific Islander participation in programs in education, commerce, business, health, human services, housing, environment, arts, agriculture, labor and employment, transportation, justice, veterans affairs and economic and community development. The Initiative seeks to highlight both the tremendous unmet needs in the Asian American and Pacific Islander communities as well as the dynamic community assets that can be leveraged to meet many of those needs. The Initiative focuses on crosscutting priority areas that may reach across all issue areas and agencies, including, for example, advancing research, data collection, analysis and dissemination for Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders, and ensuring access, especially linguistic access and cultural competence, for Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders and encouraging Asian American and Pacific Islander involvement in public service and civic engagement opportunities.
National Clearinghouse for English Language Acquisition (NCELA)