Institute of Education Sciences

Last updated
Mark Schneider, current director Mark Schneider official photo.jpg
Mark Schneider, current director

The Institute of Education Sciences (IES) is the independent, non-partisan statistics, research, and evaluation arm of the U.S. Department of Education. IES' stated mission is to provide scientific evidence on which to ground education practice and policy and to share this information in formats that are useful and accessible to educators, parents, policymakers, researchers, and the public. [1] It was created as part of the Education Sciences Reform Act of 2002.


The first director of IES was Grover Whitehurst, who was appointed in November 2002 and served for six years. Mark Schneider is currently the Director of IES. [2]


IES is divided into four major research and statistics centers:

National Board for Education Sciences

The National Board for Education Sciences serves as an advisory board for IES and has 15 voting members, who are appointed by the President of the United States. The Board also includes several ex-officio, non-voting members, including the director of IES, the commissioners of the four centers, and representatives of the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, the U.S. Census Bureau, the U.S. Department of Labor, and the National Science Foundation. The Board advises and consults with the director and the commissioners to identify research and organizational priorities for IES. Dr. Larry Hedges, of Northwestern University, is currently the chairman of the National Board for Education Sciences. [6]


In the winter of 2020–2021, after the election of President Biden but before his inauguration in January, the Trump administration carried out numerous eleventh-hour appointments including filling out the board of the NBES, positions which had remained open for several years. Many of these appointment choices were harshly criticized by education organizations for a lack of academic or educational research credentials. [7] [8] [9] [10] In May 2021, two of the new NBES appointees, Steve Hanke and John Yoo, both professors, published a commentary in The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) claiming that their Board commission documents (as well as those of others) had been duly signed and certified during the Trump administration and sent to the office of the Secretary of Education, yet the new Secretary, Miguel Cardona refused to acknowledge the appointments, deliver the credentials, or facilitate statutorily required Board meetings. [11] In the WSJ letter, the professors asserted that these circumstances mirror those of the landmark 1803 U.S. Supreme Court case of Marbury v. Madison. In July 2021, The Pacific Legal Foundation (PLF) claimed that they had obtained emails from White House officials confirming that Department of Education officials were in possession of the credentials and that PLF had sent a demand letter on behalf of Hanke and Yoo. [12] In August, the PLF, on behalf of Hanke and Yoo, filed suit in the U.S. District Court for The District of Columbia against Secretary Cardona and the Department of Education. The suit acknowledged that NBES Board members can be removed by the administration, but argued that it must do so transparently and cannot withhold credentials or obstruct the Board's statutorily required duties. [13] On September 3, 2021, the Biden administration acknowledged the validity of the appointments and formally terminated them, leading to a withdrawal of the suit. [14] [15]

See also

Related Research Articles

The ABET is a non-governmental organization that accredits post-secondary education programs in applied and natural sciences, computing, engineering and engineering technology.

The Early Childhood Education Act is the name of various landmark laws passed by the United States Congress outlining federal programs and funding for childhood education from pre-school through kindergarten. The first such act was introduced in the United States House of Representatives by Congresswoman Patsy Mink of Hawaiʻi in the 1960s. The theory behind the act is that the years before a child reaches kindergarten are the most critical to influence learning. Many children do not have access to early education before entering kindergarten. The goal of the act is to provide a comprehensive set of services for children from birth until they enter kindergarten.

The National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES) is an American non-profit organization dedicated to advancing professional licensure for engineers and surveyors. The Council’s members are the engineering and surveying licensure boards from all 50 U.S. states, the District of Columbia, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. These boards are divided into four geographic zones: Central, Northeast, Southern, Western. It is headquartered in Greenville, South Carolina.

The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) is the part of the United States Department of Education's Institute of Education Sciences (IES) that collects, analyzes, and publishes statistics on education and public school district finance information in the United States. It also conducts international comparisons of education statistics and provides leadership in developing and promoting the use of standardized terminology and definitions for the collection of those statistics. NCES is a principal agency of the U.S. Federal Statistical System.

A teacher-librarian or school librarian or school library media specialist (SLMS) is a certified librarian who also has training in teaching.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">National Assessment of Educational Progress</span> Assessment

The National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) is the largest continuing and nationally representative assessment of what U.S. students know and can do in various subjects. NAEP is a congressionally mandated project administered by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), within the Institute of Education Sciences (IES) of the U.S. Department of Education. The first national administration of NAEP occurred in 1969. The National Assessment Governing Board (NAGB) is an independent, bipartisan board that sets policy for NAEP and is responsible for developing the framework and test specifications.The National Assessment Governing Board, whose members are appointed by the U.S. Secretary of Education, includes governors, state legislators, local and state school officials, educators, business representatives, and members of the general public. Congress created the 26-member Governing Board in 1988.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study</span> Study of international math and science skills

The IEA's Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) is a series of international assessments of the mathematics and science knowledge of students around the world. The participating students come from a diverse set of educational systems in terms of economic development, geographical location, and population size. In each of the participating educational systems, a minimum of 4,000 to 5,000 students is evaluated. Contextual data about the conditions in which participating students learn mathematics and science are collected from the students and their teachers, their principals, and their parents via questionnaires.

The National Center on Education and the Economy (NCEE) is an American not-for-profit education research, advocacy, and educator professional learning organization based in Washington, DC, that first formed in 1988 as the Carnegie Forum on Education and the Economy.

Engineer in Training, or EIT, is a professional designation from the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES) used in the United States to designate a person certified by the state as having completed two requirements:

WestEd is a San Francisco-based nonprofit organization. The organization's mission states, "WestEd, a research, development, and services agency, works with education and other communities to promote excellence, achieve equity, and improve learning for children, youth, and adults."

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Brett Giroir</span> American physician-scientist

Brett P. Giroir is an American pediatrician and a former four-star admiral in the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps. Dr. Giroir currently serves as CEO and a member of the Board of Directors for Altesa BioSciences, Inc, a clinical stage biopharmaceutical company focusing on developing new treatments for respiratory viruses and global viral threats. He is also a co-founder and independent director for Revelar Biotherapeutics, and an independent director for OncoNano Medicine. His non-profit activities include Board service on the Global Virus Network and Remote Area Medical (RAM), and he remains active in global humanitarian initiatives in Latin America and Sub-Saharan Africa. He previously served as the 16th assistant secretary for health during the Trump administration from February 15, 2018, to January 19, 2021. He concurrently served as the secretary's principal public health and science adviser, the senior adviser for the Health Resources and Services Administration, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration as well as the senior adviser to the secretary for Opioid Policy. From 2020 to 2021, he served additionally as the director of the U.S. coronavirus diagnostic testing, and as the U.S. representative on the World Health Organization Executive Board. As COVID-19 testing czar, he was part of the White House Coronavirus Task Force.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">National University (California)</span> Private university in the United States

National University (NU) is a private university with its headquarters in San Diego, California. Founded in 1971, National University offers academic degree programs at campuses throughout California, a satellite campus in Nevada, and various programs online. Programs at National University are designed for adult learners. On-campus classes are typically blended learning courses, concentrated to four weeks or on weeknights with occasional Saturday classes. The university uses asynchronous learning and real-time virtual classrooms for its online programs.

According to the United States Office of Government Ethics, a political appointee is "any employee who is appointed by the President, the Vice President, or agency head". As of 2016, there were around 4,000 political appointment positions which an incoming administration needs to review, and fill or confirm, of which about 1,200 require Senate confirmation. The White House Presidential Personnel Office (PPO) is one of the offices most responsible for political appointees and for assessing candidates to work at or for the White House.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">David Bernhardt</span> 53rd United States Secretary of the Interior

David Longly Bernhardt is an American lawyer who served as U.S. Secretary of the Interior from 2019 to 2021 during the presidency of Donald Trump. From 2017 to 2019, he served as the deputy secretary of the interior. Before serving in the Trump administration, he was a shareholder at the Colorado law firm Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck, where he was an oil and energy industry lobbyist and natural resources attorney. He began working for the United States Department of the Interior (DOI) in 2001, and served as the department's solicitor from 2006 to 2009, among other roles.

Bridget Terry Long is the 12th Dean of the Harvard Graduate School of Education, and the Saris Professor of Education and Economics. She is an economist whose research focuses on college access and success. Long is a Faculty Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research and a member of the National Academy of Education.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Miguel Cardona</span> 12th United States Secretary of Education

Miguel Angel Cardona is an American educator and is currently serving as the 12th United States Secretary of Education under President Joe Biden since 2021. A member of the Democratic Party, he was confirmed by the U.S. Senate by a vote of 64–33 on March 1, 2021. Cardona previously served as commissioner of the Connecticut State Department of Education from 2019 to 2021.

Carol McDonald Connor was an educational psychologist known for her research contributions to the field of early literacy development in diverse learners, in particular for work on individualized student instruction interventions and the lattice model of reading development. She held the position of Chancellor's Faculty and Equity Advisor in the School of Education at the University of California, Irvine.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Cabinet of Joe Biden</span> Members of President Joe Bidens Cabinet

Joe Biden assumed office as President of the United States on January 20, 2021. The president has the authority to nominate members of his Cabinet to the United States Senate for confirmation under the Appointments Clause of the United States Constitution.

Douglas H. Clements is an American scholar in the field of early mathematics education. Previously a preschool and kindergarten teacher, his research centers on the learning and teaching of early mathematics, computer applications for mathematics teaching, and scaling up successful educational interventions. Clements has contributed to the writing of educational standards including the Common Core State Standards, the NCTM's Principles and Standards for School Mathematics and the NCTM's 2006 Curriculum Focal Points for Prekindergarten through Grade 8 Mathematics.


  1. "Institute of Education Sciences (IES) Home Page, part of the U.S. Department of Education". Retrieved November 17, 2015.
  2. "Secretary DeVos Welcomes New Leadership to IES, NCES". April 25, 2018. Retrieved May 11, 2018.
  3. "Higher Ed Researcher Matthew Soldner to Lead Evaluations at IES". June 25, 2017. Retrieved August 28, 2018.
  4. "Albro Appointed IES Commissioner of NCER" . Retrieved August 28, 2018.
  5. "NCES Blog | NCES Welcomes a New Commissioner". Retrieved April 25, 2018.
  6. "National Board for Education Sciences, Institute of Education Sciences (IES)". Retrieved January 17, 2017.
  7. "Trump Appointments to NBES Raise Serious Concerns on Appropriate Expertise on Education Research". American Educational Research Association. December 2020. Retrieved September 29, 2021.
  8. "President Trump Appoints Eight Members to NBES". Federation of Associations in Behavioral & Brain Sciences. December 15, 2020. Retrieved September 29, 2021.
  9. Sparks, Sarah D. (December 14, 2020). "Researchers Balk at Trump's Last-Minute Picks for Ed. Science Board". Education Week. Archived from the original on January 26, 2021. Retrieved December 18, 2020.
  10. Mervis, Jeffrey (December 11, 2020). "Researchers decry Trump picks for education sciences advisory board". Science | AAAS. Archived from the original on January 7, 2021. Retrieved December 18, 2020.
  11. Hanke, Steve H.; Yoo, John (May 24, 2021). "Marbury v. the Education Department". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved September 29, 2021.
  12. Thompson, Jessica (July 16, 2021). "Agency bureaucrats can't ignore Marbury v. Madison" . Retrieved September 29, 2021.
  13. "Hanke and Yoo v. Secretary Cardona Case 1:21-cv-01913" (PDF). Pacific Legal Foundation. July 15, 2021. Retrieved September 29, 2021.
  14. "HANKE et al v. CARDONA et al" . Retrieved September 29, 2021.
  15. "Nine months late and facing a federal lawsuit, Dept. of Education complies with law". September 3, 2021. Retrieved September 29, 2021.

Coordinates: 38°53′00″N77°01′39″W / 38.883333°N 77.0275°W / 38.883333; -77.0275