Public schools face a number of challenges in ensuring that all students have access to a safe, high-quality education.
The U.S. Department of Education and other federal agencies work to ensure that 50 million students in K-12 public schools have access to a safe, quality education. However, there are ongoing concerns about disparities in educational quality for low-income and other vulnerable students, as well as issues related to the safety and well-being of all students. Also, as COVID-19 affects schools with closures and transition to distance learning, stay informed about our ongoing oversight of the response to the coronavirus pandemic.
Low-income students, minority students, and students with special needs face challenges in accessing a quality education. These challenges include:
- Low-income students’ lack of access to college preparatory courses;
- Disparities in discipline for students with disabilities, boys, and black students;
- State variations in how students with disabilities receive educational support services; and
- Inaccuracies in federal data on the use of restraint and seclusion—practices that disproportionately affect students with disabilities.
Additionally, issues related to the safety and well-being of all students include improving: