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U.S. Department of Education: Promoting Educational Excellence for all Americans

Public agency (Sec. 300.33)

Comment: One commenter stated that the term public agency is not in the Act and noted that no State has created a new type of public education agency beyond LEAs and SEAs. The commenter stated that including the definition of public agency in the regulations, therefore, raises concerns regarding the responsibility and authority for future special education services.

Discussion: The definition of public agency refers to all agencies responsible for various activities under the Act. The terms "LEA" or "SEA" are used when referring to a subset of public agencies. We disagree that the definition raises concerns about the responsibility and authority for future educational services because the term public agency is used only for those situations in which a particular regulation does not apply only to SEAs and LEAs.

During our internal review of the NPRM, we found several errors in the definition of public agency. Our intent was to use the same language in current Sec. 300.22. We will, therefore, correct these errors to be consistent with current Sec. 300.22. Additionally, we will clarify that a charter school must be a nonprofit charter school. As noted in the discussion regarding Sec. 300.28(b)(2), we clarified that a charter school established as its own LEA under State law, must be a nonprofit charter school.

Changes: We have removed the phrase "otherwise included as" the second time it appears, and replaced it with "a school of an" in Sec. 300.33. We have also changed "LEAs" to "LEA" and "ESAs" to "ESA" the third time these abbreviations appear in Sec. 300.33.