Rep. Ron Kind introduces bill to assist Wisconsin rural schools expand educational opportunities

U.S. Rep. Ron Kind has introduced the bipartisan Investing in 21st Century Schools Act, which renews a program that assists eligible Wisconsin rural schools with accessing funds for projects from developing new curriculum to upgrading facilities.

“One of the smartest investments we can make is in providing a high-quality education for young Wisconsinites. Funds are tight for many of our rural schools which leads them to have difficulty getting the new tools and resources they need to help our students get the best education they can. This Investing in 21st Century Schools Act helps level the playing field for students in rural and underserved schools by providing access to funds to help expand education programs, purchase new technology, and upgrade facilities,” Rep. Kind stated.

This bill would extend the Qualified Zone Activity Bonds program for schools. This bond program provides 10-25 year loans that the federal government pays interest on. Loans may be used for facilities renovation, energy efficiency, renewable energy, equipment, curriculum development, or teacher training. Because the federal government provides the interest payment, the district then is typically only responsible for repaying the value of the bond.