The implementation process is what happens after the bill becomes a law. There are many different agencies that are tasked with implementing these laws. Often times these laws are vague, so the agency is responsible for interpreting them. Federalism plays a large role in implementation through cost shifting and mandates. As described in the ESEA case study, the federal government will help implement polices, but state and local agencies must sacrifice control with federal mandates.
The case study, The Elementary and Secondary Education Act discusses its attempt to provide federal financial aid to support education to disadvantaged children in poor areas. Many cases of misdirected funds were reported. Those who passed the legislation were not actively involved in implementation. This implementation was left up to the Office of Education. They did not actively police how these funds were being used, and found it difficult to control the state and local agencies priorities.
Changes occurred in the 1970’s when other agencies and interest groups became involved in this act, and offices devolved to ensure proper use of the funds. This support and strengthened implementation proved successful, and disadvantaged student’s performance was affected. The NCLB act was an expansion of the ESEA, and increased requirements for schools to receive federal aid. The involvement of federalism can be seen by the government’s requirement for schools to improve quality of education to receive grants. Some schools complain about these requirements, but need the federal money, so they must abide by these rules.
There have been demands to update or amend the act, but it is low on the agenda. According to our book, “…successful implementation requires coordination and cooperation among a web of national, state, and local governments and agencies” (Anderson, 2016, p. 231). The federal government took control of the implementation of the ESEA policy. The requirements for the policy increased and changed with federal interests and mandates.
According to our book, “…evaluation of public policy is usually focused upon what governments actually do, why, and with what material effects” (Anderson, 2016, p. 295). Many times this evaluation is performed by nongovernmental agencies. This evaluation is influenced by many factors such as outside agencies the media, special interest groups, pressure-groups and official actors congressional oversight, presidential commission activities.
There are many different types of policy evaluation: process evaluation, systematic, and experimental design. This is the most common type, and is influenced by partisan values, and creates conflict. One of the largest problems in policy evaluation are the many different opinions by agencies, the public, and the media. These opinions can influence policy evaluation and change how the public views a policy. For example, if there is a policy that the media does not support (gun control), then the public’s evaluation can shift as well.
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