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US Department of Education Principal Office Functional Statements

Functional Statements > Office of the Secretary & Deputy Secretary

Sections

  1. Mission and Responsibilities
  2. Organization
  3. Order of Succession
  4. Functions and Responsibilities of OS/ODS Components
    1. Office Of The Secretary
    2. Office of the Deputy Secretary
    3. Office of the Under Secretary
  5. Primary Delegations of Authority

I. Mission and Responsibilities

The mission of the Department of Education is to ensure equal access to education and to promote educational excellence throughout the nation.

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II. Functions of the Office of the Secretary/Office of the Deputy Secretary

The Secretary is responsible for the overall direction, supervision, and coordination of all activities of the Department and is the principal adviser to the President on Federal policies, programs and activities related to education in the United States. The Secretary serves as Chief Operating Officer for the Department under the President's Memorandum of July 11, 2001.

The Deputy Secretary focuses on the development and implementation of policies, programs, and activities relating to elementary and secondary education matters. This mission addresses a wide spectrum of interests ranging from safe and drug free schools, special education and rehabilitative services to education of linguistically and culturally diverse students, and promotion of educational interventions, and reforms.

The Under Secretary focuses on higher and adult education policy, postsecondary policy, college aid, and the President's financial aid reforms for the Pell Grant program.

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III. Order of Succession

In the event that the Secretary dies, resigns or is otherwise unable to perform the functions and duties of the office, and the office is thereby deemed to be vacant, the Deputy Secretary shall temporarily perform the functions and duties of the office in an acting capacity.

  • Deputy Secretary
  • Under Secretary
  • General Counsel
  • Chief Financial Officer

In instances where the office is not vacant, but all of the above principal officers are unable to perform the functions and duties of the office, the functions and duties of the offices shall be performed by the remaining principal officers in an order of seniority determined by date of appointment. Further, in the event that all of the Department’s principal officers are unable to perform the functions and duties of the office, the following individuals shall perform the functions and duties of the office in the order listed:

  • Secretary’s Regional Representative – Region VIII ( Denver)
  • Secretary's Regional Representative – Region III (Philadelphia)
  • Secretary's Regional Representative – Region IV (Atlanta)
  • The remaining Secretary's Regional Representatives, in seniority order as determined by the date of appointment.

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Last Modified: 07/24/2007