Madison - All students deserve the opportunity to succeed regardless of their background, zip code, or family's income.
On Friday, State Senator Alberta Darling (R-River Hills) unveiled a bi-partisan bill that creates an education savings accounts program for low-income gifted and talented students. Senator Darling says those accounts can help parents pay for textbooks, curriculum, tutors, lessons, fees, and tuition for their gifted and talented child.
"Who knows how many scientists, engineers, musicians, artists, and community leaders we are missing out on because their family can't afford additional educational opportunities," Darling said, "This is another way to make sure our best and our brightest get the opportunity they need to succeed."
Students enrolled in any public, charter, or private school who are identified as gifted and talented also satisfy the income limits for the free and reduced lunch program set forth by the federal government are eligible for the program. The current threshold for the reduced lunch program is $45,510 annually for a family of four.
Under the bill, 2,000 scholarships could be awarded in the amount of $1,000. These scholarships would be housed under the education savings account program and would allow for a parent to use the funds on eligible, state-authorized expenses.
"Wisconsin is a national leader in ensuring every child has access to a quality education," Darling said, "It's time we make sure every gifted and talented child also has the resources they need to reach their highest potential."
Senator Darling is currently seeking co-sponsors for the legislation.
Senator Darling represents portions of Milwaukee, Ozaukee, Washington and Waukesha Counties.