US Department of Education Principal Office Functional Statements
Office of the Secretary & Deputy Secretary

Functional Statements > Office of Elementary and Secondary Education

I. Office of Indian Education

The Office of Indian Education (OIE) administers the Indian Education Program of ESEA, as amended, (Title VII, Part A), which establishes policies and provides financial and technical assistance for supporting LEAs, Indian tribes and organizations, post- secondary institutions and other entities in meeting the special educational and cultural related academic needs of American Indians and Alaska Natives, 20 U.S.C. 7401 et. seq. OIE is headed by a Director who reports to the Assistant Secretary and who advises the Assistant Secretary on matters related to the programs administered by OIE. The Indian Education Programs include:

  • Formula grants to LEAs;
  • Discretionary grant programs including:
    • Professional development for teachers;
    • Demonstration grants to improve the opportunities and achievement of Indian students; and
    • National research activity grants.


OIE administers approximately 1,300 formula and discretionary grants each year. A White House appointed National Advisory Council on Indian Education (NACIE) provides advice and counsel on program policies and implementation strategies of the Indian Education Program.

The Director of OIE is responsible for establishing policies and for providing overall leadership. The Director is also responsible for the coordination of all activities in the Department that relate to Indian education and serves as the Designated Federal Official to the NACIE. The Director promotes cooperative efforts among various Federal departments on matters involving Indian education and establishes cooperative working relationships with the Department’s Institute for Education Sciences (IES) for administration of the national research activity grants. The Office of the Director also develops policies, procedures, and regulations to support overall program management and operations, develops and coordinates national evaluation, technical assistance, and dissemination activities.

OIE staff are organized into two teams of program specialists. A Group Leader who is responsible for work assignments, quality assurance, and staff development heads each team.

Team 1 is responsible for approximately one-half of the formula grants and for the administration of the discretionary grant programs. Formula grant administration is assigned to individual program specialists on a geographic basis. This team also supports the program budgeting and contracting activities.

Team 2 is responsible for the remaining formula grants. Program specialists are assigned administration responsibilities on a geographic basis. Grant administration includes monitoring of technical reports, financial draws, and technical assistance. This team also supports the office’s administrative and information dissemination activities and provides a liaison to the NACIE.

Since Indian Education Formula Grants are provided directly to LEAs without the direct involvement of State agencies, the program monitoring and evaluation for OIE grants involves a very large number of individual grants. A portion of OIE funding is also set-aside for schools administered by the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA). OIE facilitates the transfer of all funding from Department programs to BIA that is set-aside for administration by BIA. OIE also maintains close communication with BIA to ensure that policies and regulations governing transferred funds are consistent with legislative requirements and ED policies.

OIE works closely with IES to develop a long-term research agenda for improving Indian education. OIE and IES jointly administer the National Activities research funding to support innovative strategies for Indian education, development and analysis of empirical statistical data on Indian student achievement, technical assistance for grantees, and program monitoring of grants.

OIE also facilitates ED implementation of the American Indian and Alaskan Native Education Executive Order 13336. Executive Order 13336 (April 30, 2004) created a Working Group made up of all federal employees to oversee implementation of this Order. This Order suggests a consultation process to be utilized by the Working Group in the planning and implementation of policies and program strategies that may affect Indian students, Tribal governments, or Indian organizations. The Working Group will conduct a multi-year study of American Indian and Alaska Native education.


Print this page Printable view Bookmark  and Share
Last Modified: 02/24/2012