LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders signed an executive order on Jan. 19 making changes to education regulations.

The executive order aims to “limit government overreach, reduce red tape, and improve education.”

According to the order, the Secretary of the Department of Education will develop a unified system that streamlines applications for all state and federal funding programs away from multiple plans and budgets into a single application that will be operational for the 2024-25 budget cycle.

The order says before the application launches, the Secretary of the Department of Education will review state laws, regulations, reporting requirements, and processes that apply to public schools, officers, and employees it deems “out-of-date, unnecessary, or otherwise burdensome”.

According to the order, the Department of Education will recommend to the governor or the State Board of Education executive orders, statutory changes or regulatory reforms to “empower schools, reduce bureaucracy, and improve student achievement,” before the application launches.

The order also says before the app launches, the Department of Education will establish a process where school districts may submit feedback to the department for any “overburdensome and redundant state laws, regulations, reporting requirements, or processes,” as part of the annual planning and application process.

In the order, Sanders calls the method in which Arkansas public school districts plan and apply for state and federal funds “burdensome, fragmented, and inefficient”.

“Arkansas’ existing academic and financial planning processes create significant administrative burdens for local school districts, encourage inefficient spending, exacerbate bureaucratic waste, and detract school officials from more critical education priorities,” the order states.

Sanders says in the order that consolidating the processes into a single application and planning framework will lead to higher student achievement.

“Intelligent planning can help identify specific state laws, regulations, bureaucratic rules, and red tape that needlessly complicate school district operations and hurt students,” the order states.

On Jan. 13, Sanders issued an executive order repealing multiple previous executive orders pertaining to COVID-19 that she deemed “obsolete.”

The executive order cited five specific, previous executive orders issued in 2020.