US Department of Education Principal Office Functional Statements
Office of Postsecondary Education



The Assistant Secretary for Postsecondary Education administers programs for postsecondary education, both public and private, and serves as the principal adviser to the Secretary on matters affecting postsecondary education. The Assistant Secretary is assisted by three Deputy Assistant Secretaries who have leadership and oversight responsibilities for higher education, international and foreign language education and postsecondary education policy development and implementation.

An Executive Office reports to the Assistant Secretary.

Executive Office

The Executive Office, headed by an Executive Officer, provides general administrative and management support services to the Office of Postsecondary Education. The office provides technical assistance to the Assistant Secretary, Deputy Assistant Secretaries, and program directors on general administrative and management issues. The office serves as an interface and liaison with staff units within OPE and throughout the Department to assure that requirements and support needs are met.

The Executive Office

  • Formulates administrative budget requests and justifications;
  • Executes program and administrative budgets;
  • Manages and coordinates travel, printing, contracts and procurements;
  • Manages the employee travel and purchase card program;
  • Grants administration functions, including monitoring plans and risk assessments;
  • Monitors internal control;
  • Manages select contracts that support OPE-wide operations;
  • Manages and coordinates human resource services;
  • Manages staffing allocations and position ceilings;
  • Manages and coordinates an employee awards program;
  • Manages employee payroll matters;
  • Oversees workforce and succession planning;
  • Monitors leadership development activities;
  • Negotiates personnel related matters, in conjunction with the Union, Labor Relations, and other Departmental Offices;
  • Performs management evaluations, manpower utilization, and organizational planning studies;
  • Develops and monitors an affirmative action and equal employment opportunity programs and services as the Office of Postsecondary Educations EEO Liaison;
  • Manages and coordinates employee performance agreements;
  • Provides administrative services including space and logistics;
  • Manages control correspondence;
  • Manages and coordinates Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) responses;
  • Coordinates and manages personnel, physical and information technology security;
  • Coordinates and manages information technology and telecommunications services;
  • Manages information technology and telecommunications assets;
  • Manages business continuity plans; and
  • Manages general administrative and support services.


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Last Modified: 10/21/2010