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Deregulation occurs when rules, regulations, and/or oversight are eliminated or reduced in an organization or a system. In the educational context, deregulation generally refers to reducing or eliminating the federal, state, or local constraints that limit the choices of educational decision makers. Although distinct, deregulation may be related to and overlap with other concepts, including decentralization, privatization, and (in the opposite direction) standardization.

Applying the taxonomy developed by Joseph Stiglitz, there are four types of educational regulations: (1) disclosure requirements, (2) restrictions, (3) mandates, and (4) ownership restrictions. Disclosure requirements force school districts to reveal information about the educational process and its outcomes. Restrictions prohibit school districts from engaging in particular behaviors (e.g., increasing class sizes or hiring uncertified teachers). Mandates require school districts to take ...

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