Funds to enhance training for 196 rural school districts, 172 rural public libraries
OCONTO FALLS – Governor Scott Walker today announced $1.5 million in Technology for Educational Achievement (TEACH) grant awards have been awarded to help 196 rural school districts and 172 rural public libraries to strengthen the information technology knowledge and capacity of educators.
“We are investing more actual dollars into public classrooms than ever before, and TEACH training grant awards provide opportunities for teachers and librarians across the state to acquire information technology knowledge that will help them be even more effective as professionals,” said Governor Walker. “Expanding technological tools and capacity for educators will strengthen learning experiences for students as they develop the educational and career skills they need to win the 21st century.”
Governor Walker highlighted the TEACH program during a tour at Oconto Falls High School, whose district received $9,152 as part of a 10-district consortium that received $56,725 in TEACH Educational Technology Training grant funding.
Since 2016, 786 training grants to rural schools and 172 grants to public libraries totaling nearly $6 million ($5,995,785) have been awarded. Each year of grants has allowed district teachers and now librarians to attend, arrange, and provide training activities to build the information technology knowledge and capacity of teachers.
TEACH educational technology training grants for state fiscal year 2019 totaling $1,499,854 have been awarded to 23 consortia comprised of 196 rural school districts and nine consortia comprised of 172 rural public libraries.
The grants provide support for participating school districts and libraries to attend, arrange, and administer educator training activities that help expand digital learning and usage. Eligible applicants include consortia of three or more eligible rural school districts for the purpose of training teachers on the use of educational technology. Grants are available for districts that have fewer than 13 students per square mile.
Fiscal year 2019 is the first year with expanded eligibility for TEACH to include rural public libraries. Each public library must be located in a rural territory as defined by the U.S. Census Bureau and the population of the municipality within which the library or branch of the library is located is 20,000 or less. The expanded eligibility was made possible through 2017 Wisconsin Act 142.
In fiscal year 2019, average funding per school district consortium grew to $61,601 from $55,541 the previous year. Rural library consortiums will receive an average of $9,227 per consortium.
The training grants are one of three grant programs in TEACH Wisconsin, which was designed to advance education into the 21st Century through investment in educational technologies in Wisconsin through schools, cooperative educational service agencies (CESAs), and libraries The program, administered in collaboration with the state Department of Public Instruction, seeks to enable eligible institutions to take advantage of gains in technology and communications, to improve teaching and learning, and to provide students with the skills necessary to live and work in a complex world. TEACH Wisconsin also awards grants for infrastructure and curriculum development.
A list of 2019 TEACH Educational Technology Training Grant Awards is available online.