Many local school districts across the United States include within their boundaries parcels of land that are owned by the Federal Government or that have been removed from the local tax rolls by the Federal Government, including Indian lands. These school districts face special challenges — they must provide a quality education to the children living on the Indian and other Federal lands and meet the requirements of the No Child Left Behind Act, while sometimes operating with less local revenue than is available to other school districts, because the Federal property is exempt from local property taxes.
Since 1950, Congress has provided financial assistance to these local school districts through the Impact Aid Program. Impact Aid was designed to assist local school districts that have lost property tax revenue due to the presence of tax-exempt Federal property, or that have experienced increased expenditures due to the enrollment of federally connected children, including children living on Indian lands. The Impact Aid law (now Title VIII of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA)) provides assistance to local school districts with concentrations of children residing on Indian lands, military bases, low-rent housing properties, or other Federal properties and, to a lesser extent, concentrations of children who have parents in the uniformed services or employed on eligible Federal properties who do not live on Federal property.
Nearly 92 percent of the $1.19 billion appropriated for FY 2003 is targeted for payment to school districts based on an annual count of federally connected school children. Slightly more than 5 percent assists school districts that have lost significant local assessed value due to the acquisition of property by the Federal Government since 1938. Slightly less than $27 million is available for a competitive discretionary construction grant program for which certain Impact Aid-eligible school districts can apply.
The Impact Aid law (now Title VIII of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965) has been amended numerous times since its inception in 1950. The program continues, however, to support local school districts with concentrations of children who reside on Indian lands, military bases, low-rent housing properties, and other Federal properties, or who have parents in the uniformed services or employed on eligible Federal properties. The law refers to local school districts as local educational agencies, or LEAs.
In FY 2014, 67 Montana school districts received more than $38.5 million in Impact Aid payments.
Montana Regional Education Service Areas
Regional Education Service Areas (RESA's) support improved student achievement through providing state supported high-quality professional development in core academic areas and education related topics.
- Increase the subject-matter knowledge of teachers;
- Increasing teacher understanding and use of effective, research-based instructional strategies;
- Increasing teacher competency in the use of educational technology.
Julia Cruse, Regional Education Service Area Specialist, 406.444.0769
Click regions for RESA contacts/websites
Montana North Central Educational Services Region
Vacant; contact Julia Cruse at OPI (406) 444-0769
Web Site: www.mncesr.org
Montana Regional Education Service Area 3
Marsha Sampson, Director
John Keener, MRESA3 Coordinator
College of Education
1500 University Drive, Billings, Mt 59101
Web Site: www.msubillings.edu\smart