The origin of the Education Department of Manipur dates back to 1903 when Rev. Pattigrew an educationist and a philanthropist became the first honorary inspector of schools under the Education Department of Assam. Prior to 1950 there was no separate Department of Education in Manipur. A separate Department of Education was created for the first time in Manipur on the 20th January 1950 with Shri T.Kipgen as Asstt. Secretary to the Government of Manipur. He was responsible for all education policies and programmes with regard to all types of schools in the hills and plains. In the year 1951-52 a new set up in the general administration of the then Union Territory of Manipur came into existence with the setting up of the Territorial Council. Till 1960 the Manipur Administration and the Territorial Council had full control over the educational activities. In 1960 when Imphal Municipality was established a part of primary education, particularly in the municipal areas was transferred to this local body.
The nomenclature and responsibilities of the Department have undergone changes from time to time. Since 01-03-1974, for the purpose of control and management, all primary schools in the hill districts of Manipur were transferred to concerned autonomous district councils. The Department of Education however retained the power of supervision and inspection, framing of curriculum and syllabi and selection of textbooks.
At present, the Education Department of Manipur has been divided into 4 (four) different entities viz.
(1) Department of Education (University and Higher Education)
(2) Department of Education (S)
(3) State Council of Educational Research and Training, Government of Manipur and
(4) Department of Adult Education.