U.S. Department of Education: Promoting Educational Excellence for all Americans

Fiscal Year 2011 Budget Summary — February 1, 2010


Section III. F.  Institute of Education Sciences


The Institute of Education Sciences (IES) supports sustained programs of research, evaluation, and statistics to provide solutions to the problems and challenges faced by schools and learners.  Investment in research and statistics activities is critical in order to identify effective instructional and program practices, track student achievement, and measure the impact of educational reform.  Through its four centers—the National Center for Education Research, the National Center for Education Statistics, the National Center for Education Evaluation and Regional Assistance, and the National Center for Special Education Research—IES ensures that the Federal investment in education research, statistics, and evaluation is well-managed and relevant to the needs of educators and policymakers.

For 2011, the Administration is seeking $738.8 million for IES activities, an increase of $79.8 million over the 2010 level.  This request would enable IES to invest nearly $45 million more in research and development projects in early learning and elementary, secondary, and postsecondary education and to support significant evaluation activities begun in 2010 and an evaluation initiative to be conducted in collaboration with the National Science Foundation.

The request also would maintain the Administration's commitment to supporting high quality statistics and assessment programs, including implementation of 2011 reading, mathematics, and writing assessments under the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) and an equating study between NAEP and The International Mathematics and Science Study.  The request also includes funding to help States improve the quality of longitudinal student data systems.  Finally, the request would be used to extend the contracts for the Regional Educational Laboratories (REL) so that new contracts may reflect and support any significant changes in the upcoming reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act.

Research, Development, and Dissemination

  2009 2010 2011
B.A. in millions $167.2 $200.2 $260.7

The request includes an increase of $60.5 million, or 30 percent, to support critical investments in education research, development, dissemination, and evaluation that provide parents, teachers, and schools with scientifically based information on effective educational practice.  The request would enable IES to invest in new grants to support evaluations at the State and district level to evaluate whether reforms undertaken with funds awarded under the Race to the Top program are producing the desired improvements on student achievement and other critical outcomes, research on using data to improve K-12 and postsecondary education and inform education policy, and assessment projects to support the development of reliable and valid measures of kindergarten readiness.  This request also would allow IES to continue to fund more high quality applications under existing programs of research, development, and dissemination in areas where our knowledge of learning and instruction is inadequate.  As part of the Administration’s government-wide initiative to strengthen program evaluation, the request also includes significant new resources for the evaluation of education reform efforts under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and for a study of the impact of professional development in mathematics for elementary school teachers, part of the Administration's efforts to improve Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education.


  2009 2010 2011
B.A. in millions $98.5 $108.5 $117.0

This request would support the collection, analysis, and dissemination of education-related statistics in response both to legislative requirements and to the particular needs of data providers, data users, and educational researchers.  The Department’s statistics programs—operated primarily through competitively awarded contracts administered by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES)—provide general statistics about trends in education, collect data to monitor reform and measure educational progress, and inform the IES research agenda.

The request would allow NCES to make strategic improvements to the statistics program, including conducting an equating study between the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) and The Third International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMMS) that would allow States to compare their students' 8th grade mathematics achievement to that of students in other countries.

Regional Educational Laboratories

  2009 2010 2011
B.A. in millions $67.6 $70.7 $69.7

The requested funds would be used to extend the current 5-year REL contracts for one additional year to enable IES to reflect changes from the upcoming reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act in the competition for the next round of REL contracts.  This extension would also enable the RELs to complete studies currently underway that otherwise could not be concluded within the time and funding available under the current contracts.  The request includes a decrease of $1 million, which reflects the completion of funding for the program evaluation in 2010.


  2009 2010 2011
B.A. in millions $138.8 $138.8 $143.8

The request would fund the ongoing National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) and the National Assessment Governing Board.  NAEP measures and reports on the status of and trends in student learning over time, on a subject-by-subject basis, and makes objective information on student performance available to policymakers, educators, parents, and others. NAEP is the only nationally representative and continuing assessment of what American students know and can do, and has become a key measure of our Nation's educational performance.  NAEP activities are conducted through competitively awarded contracts.  The increase would pay for the NAEP portion of the NAEP-TIMSS equating study.

At the request level, the Department plans to conduct 2011 national and State reading and math assessments at grades 4 and 8; a national writing assessment at grades 4, 8, and 12; a State grade 4 writing assessment; and 2011 assessments in a small number of large urban districts. 
The request also would fund preparations for future assessments and for continued analysis and reporting of assessments conducted prior to 2011.

Research in Special Education

  2009 2010 2011
B.A. in millions $70.6 $71.1 $71.1

This program supports discretionary grants and contracts for research to address gaps in scientific knowledge in order to improve special education and early intervention services for infants, toddlers, and children with disabilities.  The request would support continuation and new awards under ongoing programs of research, including research intended to improve the developmental outcomes and school readiness of infants, toddlers, and young children with disabilities; to improve educational outcomes in core subject areas for children with disabilities; and to improve social and behavioral outcomes.

Statewide Data Systems

  2009 2010 2011
B.A. in millions $65.0 $58.3 $65.0

This program supports competitive awards to State educational agencies to foster the design, development, and implementation of longitudinal data systems that would enable States to use individual student data to enhance the provision of education and close achievement gaps. Funding in 2011 would support continuation costs for grants awarded in 2009.  The request also would fund improved data coordination and quality as well as technical assistance to enable better use of the information to improve educational outcomes

Special Education Studies and Evaluations

  2009 2010 2011
B.A. in millions $9.5 $11.5 $11.5

This program supports competitive grants, contracts, and cooperative agreements to assess the implementation of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and the effectiveness of State and local efforts to provide special education and early intervention programs and services to infants, toddlers, and children with disabilities.  The request would provide continued support for a new study of transition and learning outcomes for students with disabilities initiated in 2010, as well for as the required national assessment of activities supported with Federal special education funds and other ongoing studies and evaluations of special education.

Higher Education Programs  Table of contents  Programs Proposed for Consolidation or Elimination

For further information contact the ED Budget Service.

This page last modified—February 1, 2010 (mjj).