The Community’s public school is the greatest discovery, and the cornerstone of our democratic society – Horace Mann

Good Morning,

I hope the summer is going well for all of you. Please let me know if you have had any changes with your Guidance staff so I can update our scholarship email list.

WiRSA Welcome

Welcome to Arcadia School District as a new WiRSA member. We look forward to working with you.

WiRSA Office Closed
This will be the last Update until mid-August, but I will continue to send out pertinent information when needed. Also, note that the WiRSA Office will be closed from July 19-29.

WiRSA “Diversity in Rural Schools” Conference Registration is Open

The 2019 WiRSA Conference will be held again this year at the Glacier Canyon Lodge Conference Center in Wisconsin Dells October 28-29. Please note the program outline will be out next week.  Register here.         More details here..

 WiRSA Rural Awards – New Category added for Principals
WiRSA is now taking applications for the 2019 WiRSA Rural Awards. The WiRSA Rural Awards are a way to recognize the great people you have in your district and community for the outstanding things that they do for your school and rural education. The deadline for nominations is September 13.  Click here for more information.

WiRSA Conference Vendor Booth / Sponsorship Registration is Open (Booths are almost gone)

Information for securing one of the 26 vendor booths for the 2019 WiRSA Conference is now available. Please see attached flyer for more details. Priority will be given to our Business Partners, formerly known as Associate Members, then vendors from last year, followed by new requests.

We will be using a new registration process this year, so please read all information carefully. Vendor/Sponsor Registration Form.

WiRSA – WREA Job Connection Reminder

WREA and WiRSA have joined forces to connect school districts with hard to fill partial positions and long-term substitute positions with retired educators looking to get back into the workforce part time to share their knowledge and love of education with the students of rural Wisconsin.  website

District Administrators and or HR personnel can complete the form below to post a partial position or long-term substitute position for posting on the WREA website. There is no cost for the posting, this is a service of WREA and WiRSA.

Please send or email completed form to Diane Wilcenski, WREA Executive Director, 6405 Century Avenue, Middleton, WI  53562 or email Diane at WREA and WiRSA Job Connection Fillable Form

 Legislative Update for the Week of July 15
Nothing scheduled on the calendar at this time.

National Level Legislative Update From NREAC/CEF
Policy Intelligence and Education News

  • Fiscal update – Congress is back in session with the September 30thdeadline to pass fiscal year (FY) 2020 appropriations bills approaching faster than it seems, and possibly a more pressing deadline to raise the federal debt limit that may occur in early to mid-September.  Democrats have wanted a comprehensive budget deal that would include both the needed increase in the debt ceiling, or a suspension of the existing debt ceiling, as well as an increase on the sequester-level caps on defense and non-defense discretionary (NDD) spending that currently require deep cuts to both categories of spending for the upcoming fiscal year.  The Administration had been arguing to just increase the debt ceiling, but as of yesterday talks between Administration negotiators and Republican Congressional leaders seem to acknowledge that some adjustment of the caps will be needed for a deal to be passed. Some proposals are listed below:
    • Administration’s current proposal –Based on what we’re hearing, the Administration wants to increase the debt ceiling before the August congressional recess, and Senate Majority Leader McConnell concurs.  One Administration proposal was to freeze appropriations at the FY 2019 level for all of next year – a full-year continuing resolution (CR) – with a one-year debt-ceiling increase, presumably until sometime after the 2020 elections.  Freezing funding at the 2019 level would require raising the FY 2020 defense and NDD caps, but not as high as the levels that the House has already approved.  Congress never wants to approve a full-year CR, and certainly not so far before the fiscal year begins.
    • Administration’s original budget proposal –The President’s FY 2020 budget submitted in February cut NDD funding down to the sequester cap – a $54 billion or 9% cut from FY 2019 levels – but provided large defense increases with spending that is not controlled by the caps and that is supposed to be reserved for war funding.  Neither the House nor the Senate has supported this approach.
    • House proposal –The House has approved increases in funding that are supported by the 10 appropriations bills it has already passed: a $34 billion increase over the FY 2019 level for NDD funding and a $17 billion increase for defense,  which reflect equal $88 billion increases over their sequester-level caps set in current law.  Speaker Pelosi does not want to approve a debt ceiling increase without also increasing the caps.
    • Senate –the Senate has not acted on any FY 2020 appropriations bills while waiting to see what budget agreement is reached about the caps.

From US Department of Education
This week’s Update has information on CTE and Perkins grant, Civil Rights, IDEA, Higher education and Funding Opportunities. Read more here.

From the DOJ
No update this week.

From the NREA
The 111th Rural Research and Conference Symposium hosted by NREA & BFK.
The #RuralEdForum brings together rural #edleaders from across the country to advance #21stcenturylearning. Join our community of bold, courageous educators on Oct. 24–26 in Louisville, KY!  Register today to save.

Rural schools need career counselors, too   Article

The Education Deserts of Rural America
The college-completion gap between rural and urban residents is widening.   Article


From IES
NCES Releases: The Costs of Childcare: Results From the 2016 Early Childhood Program Participation Survey
In 2016, among children ages 5 and younger in at least one weekly nonparental care arrangement, 25 percent received only relative care, 12 percent received only nonrelative care, 42 percent received only center-based care, and 20 percent received multiple types of care.  To view the full report, please visit.

 Director Events from Last Week
July 8 – Weekly Stakeholder Meeting

July 10 – Quarterly WiRSA Board of Director Meeting – (See attached agenda)

July 11-12 – Redefining Ready Workshop

Director Events for the Upcoming Week

July 15 – Meeting with UW and WiRSA Researcher Katie McCabe
July 15 – Weekly Stakeholder Meeting

July 16 – Meeting with We Are Many – United Against Hate

July 16 – Meeting with Marion College Representative

July 22 – Interview for the Morgridge Summer Science Camp

July 19-29 – Vacation

Resources and Grant/Scholarship Reminders

  • Save the Date: 2019 WiRSA Conference, October 28-29, Glacier Canyon in Wisconsin Dells.


 Thank you Sponsors!

Alliant Energy, CESA Foundation, Ehlers, Jostens, McKinstry,

Mid-State Technical College, National Insurance Services, Nexus Solutions,

The Insurance Center, TRICORE Insurance, UW Colleges Online,

WEA Member Benefits and Wisconsin Farmers Union