Trump signs or­der to get govern­ment out of schools

Cam­paigned on re­turn­ing K-12 over­sight to states

The Washington Times Daily - - POLITICS - BY S.A. MILLER

Pres­i­dent Trump signed an ex­ec­u­tive or­der Wednesday to start pulling the fed­eral govern­ment out of K-12 education, fol­low­ing through on a cam­paign prom­ise to re­turn school con­trol to state and lo­cal of­fi­cials.

The or­der, dubbed the “Education Fed­er­al­ism Ex­ec­u­tive Or­der,” will launch a 300-day re­view of Oba­maera reg­u­la­tions and guid­ance for school dis­tricts and di­rects Education Sec­re­tary Betsy DeVos to mod­ify or re­peal mea­sures she deems an over­reach by the fed­eral govern­ment.

“For too long the govern­ment has im­posed its will on state and lo­cal govern­ments. The re­sult has been education that spends more and achieves far, far, far less,” Mr. Trump said. “My ad­min­is­tra­tion has been work­ing to re­verse this fed­eral power grab and give power back to fam­i­lies, cities [and] states — give power back to lo­cal­i­ties.”

He said that pre­vi­ous ad­min­is­tra­tions had in­creas­ingly forced schools to com­ply with “whims and dic­tates” from Wash­ing­ton, but his ad­min­is­tra­tion would break the trend.

“We know lo­cal com­mu­ni­ties know it best and do it best,” said Mr. Trump, who was joined by sev­eral Repub­li­can gov­er­nors for the signing. “The time has come to em­power teach­ers and par­ents to make the de­ci­sions that help their stu­dents achieve suc­cess.”

Ms. DeVos and Vice Pres­i­dent Mike Pence were on hand for the cer­e­mony, which was at­tended by about 25 peo­ple, in­clud­ing teach­ers, law­mak­ers and the gov­er­nors.

The ex­ec­u­tive or­der is not ex­pected to have an im­me­di­ate im­pact on school dis­tricts. Pol­icy changes will follow a re­port on the find­ings of the re­view.

The re­view will be spear­headed by the Depart­ment of Education’s Reg­u­la­tory Re­view Task Force, ac­cord­ing to the or­der.

Ms. DeVos al­ready has au­thor­ity to mod­ify or re­peal reg­u­la­tions that are deemed a vi­o­la­tion of fed­eral law. The or­der, how­ever, cre­ates a re­view for iden­ti­fy­ing those ar­eas and makes clear her man­date from the pres­i­dent to take ac­tion.

Re­duc­ing the fed­eral govern­ment’s role in K-12 is part of Mr. Trump’s re­form agenda, which also in­cludes the ex­pan­sion of school choice pro­grams.

Among those at the signing cer­e­mony were Govs. Kay Ivey of Alabama, Gary Her­bert of Utah, Paul LePage of Maine, Brian San­doval of Nevada and Terry Branstad of Iowa, who also is Mr. Trump’s nom­i­nee for am­bas­sador to China.

Also in at­ten­dance were Sen. Lamar Alexan­der of Ten­nessee and Rep. Vir­ginia Foxx of North Carolina, the Repub­li­can chairs of the two cham­bers’ education com­mit­tees.


Pres­i­dent Trump signed an ex­ec­u­tive or­der di­rect­ing Education Sec­re­tary Betsy DeVos to mod­ify or re­peal mea­sures she deems an over­reach by the fed­eral govern­ment on mat­ters of K-12 education. Mr. Trump aims to give such over­sight back to the states.

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