What Is the Role of Government in Education?

The government pays for schooling in the United States up to grade 12, therefore, it sets the standards that are considered acceptable for how the school is run and what type of curriculum the students will focus on. This is mostly done at a state level with about 87.7 percent of school funding provided by state and local governments, while the federal government only provides about 10.8 percent, according to the U.S. Department of Education.

However, the federal government has taken a more active role with the 2001 “No Child Left Behind Act.” The act authorizes the federal government to spend money on K-12 programs, which means it has a say in how schools operate. In most cases, this results in federal standardized testing. Schools that do not meet the required standardized test minimums could lose their federal funding, which impacts the community and the students.