The States have their own independent systems of education. And naturally, different States have different systems of education.
The people in U.S.A. did not favour Federal control on education as well as uniform pattern of education. They were afraid that it might encroach upon their traditional rights and freedom. And in spite of all financial help and grants from the Federal Government, the responsibility of education remained with the State Governments.
The State Governments feel satisfied by transferring educational administration and organisation to the local boards. Thus local boards, also known as Public Boards, are free to make educational provisions.
They establish institutions according to the needs, interest and traditions of the people. The State-governments however, exercise some control on their working, i.e. the State Board of Education has been established for the determination of educational policies, approval of budget, distribution of grants, and general supervision.
In U.S.A. schools were established in the colonies according to the needs and traditions of European immigrants. Changes in the organisation of schools and their curriculum were brought about according to American atmospheres, mutual contact of different European communities and with increase in population.
Local Boards which organised education according to social needs, interests and traditions freely were established for managing the schools.
Federal Government and State Governments looked after these schools only under special circumstances. Connections with Federal Government were only on moral grounds as a member state of the federation.
The Federal Government and the State Governments provided all possible help to the Local Boards for running independent schools freely. Thus the Local Boards got legal approval for the development of an independent spirit.
There could be no doubt that the local boards carried out educational development plans according to the changing social and political atmosphere but they had very limited resources which obstructed their plans of development.
On request, the State Governments gave financial help on the condition that the Local Boards shall maintain a minimum standard of education prescribed by the Government.
When the Federal and State Governments began to give financial assistance to the Local Boards and other local institutions, they became active in fulfilling their financial obligations.
The grants were given in proportion to the collections of the Local Boards and schools. This improved the situation making local institutions self-sufficient, but along with it, the control of State Governments on them increased.
During the third decade of the nineteenth century (1820 to 1830), there was an important educational change. At that time, the number of European immigrants was on the increase. As a result, the number of children seeking admission in schools went up so much that the schools with their limited resources were unable to meet the situation.
Besides, the difficulty of transport facilities from home to school for the children, forced the public to demand educational facilities from the State Government. They considered it as their right and the responsibility of the State Governments.
The State had begun to give help on the condition that the school should maintain a minimum standard of education. Thus, a good number of schools and institutions came under the control of State Governments. The control benefited the Local Boards to the extent that they got legal approval in the bargain.
The historical development of education in U.S.A. clearly proves that education is the responsibility of State Governments. State Government is the largest unit for education.
For the first time in 1784, Rezents Board was established at State level for the purpose of presenting educational policy and framing rules. But it did not make significant contribution alone.
In 1812 the first Superintendent of Education was appointed in New York. His work was to distribute the grant given by the State Government to the schools and local institutions. Afterwards, within some years, Superintendents of Education were appointed in the States of Massachussets and Connecticut.
Secretary of Education Horrace Man and Henry Bernard did much work for the expansion of education in these States. They brought about public awakening in the field of education through the publication of articles and journals.
The good results of the above efforts led to the establishment of units of educational control and by 1850 Education Control Offices were established both in Northern and Southern States. Superintendents of Education were appointed in all the States. The constitutional struggle helped the State Governments in getting the right of control on schools and educational institutions.
In 1890 for the first time, the Superintendent of Education in Indiana State was given the right of selecting good books for school curriculum. In 1897, the judgment of New York High Court confined the right of establishing schools on the Superintendent of Education also.