Columbus, OH—RuralOrganizing.org is demanding that President Donald Trump and Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos immediately reverse their decision to alter eligibility requirements for the Rural and Low-Income School Program in light of new reporting from the New York Times that the change will cut thousands of dollars in aid to some of the poorest, most isolated schools in the country.
The following is a statement from Matthew Hildreth, Executive Director of RuralOrganizing.org.
The Trump administration is pursuing another policy that hurts rural communities. This time, their target is rural kids who deserve equal access to education, whether it's K-12 or college. This bureaucratic bookkeeping decision is heartless and inept. President Donald Trump and Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos must immediately reverse their decision to alter eligibility requirements for RLIS and refocus on helping small rural schools.
Congress created the Rural Education Achievement Program in 2002. It's the only dedicated federal funding stream for rural school districts. As the New York Times notes “Rural school districts, which serve nearly one in seven public-school students, have long been considered the most underfunded and ignored in the country.” These districts rely on the funding that’s being cut to supplement the costs of services that are far less accessible to rural students, like technology, mental health and guidance counselors, and full-day kindergarten.
RuralOrganizing.org is circulating an online petition urging the Trump administration to immediately reverse course on their decision to alter eligibility requirements for the Rural and Low-Income School Program. You can view the petition here.
The mission of RuralOrganizing.org is to rebuild a rural America that is empowered, thriving, and equitable. Follow us on Twitter @RuralOrganizing.