Rehberg Sponsors Legislation Increasing Education Funding for Military and Tribal Students Across Montana
Montana's Congressman, Denny Rehberg, announced today he is sponsoring legislation increasing education funding for students located on or near an Indian reservation or military base.
"Montana kids deserve the best education no matter where they live," said Rehberg, founder of the Congressional Rural Education Task Force. "School districts located near Malmstrom or one of Montana's seven reservations often lack the funding that typically comes from property taxes. This legislation would give a much-needed boost to these school districts."
The Government Reservation Acceleration Development for Education Act (GRADE-A) would make it mandatory for funds to be directed to eligible school districts who meet the requirements of the Impact Aid program. Eligible districts include areas where 10% of the school district resides on federally-owned land or the student body is made up of 3% or 400 students residing on federally-owned land.
School districts use Impact Aid for a wide variety of expenses, including: salaries of teachers and teacher aides, textbooks, computers, after school programs, remedial tutoring, advanced placement classes, and special enrichment programs.
"The intent of the Impact Aid program was to provide vital funds to qualifying school districts on a consistent basis," said Ivan Small, Superintendent of Poplar Public Schools. "This legislation would ensure that intent is accomplished."
"Quality education for all Montanans is a top priority of mine," said Rehberg. "With seven Indian reservations and Malmstrom Air Force Base, it's critical to Montana this program gets funded."
Montana Impact Aid facts:
· Since 2001, Impact Aid funding for Montana has increased 18.4%.
· In 2005, Montana school districts received $42,174,541 in Impact Aid.
· 72 Montana school districts receive Impact Aid funds