Lesson 1: The Structure of the U.S. Public Education System

Lesson Overview: The U.S. education system is made up of various complex governance and accountability structures at Federal, state, local, and district levels. Within these, there are significant laws and policies that impact how education is funded and how the needs of special student populations are to be addressed. A basic understanding of the U.S. public education system and relevant policy will provide School Liaisons with information needed to support military-connected students and their families.

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Learning Objectives: Upon completing this lesson, School Liaisons will be able to:

  • Describe the structure of the U.S. public education system, including governance structures.
  • Describe the nature of funding for public education in the U.S.
  • Explain how Federal policy addresses special student populations such as special needs students and English learners.
  • Describe the policies and provisions for support of military-connected student education abroad.