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Teach For America Bill Passes South Dakota House

February 29, 2012, 6:00 AM

PIERRE, SD -

South Dakota House members support a bill that establishes a matching funds system to shore up the state's Teach For America program.

The bill creates a grant program with the Department of Education that expands funding for four years starting in July. Under this measure, the state would match private donations 3-1 over the four-year period.

Since its 2004 South Dakota start, Teach For America has placed 57 teachers in the state's most rural communities. With more money, the number of educators is expected to grow to 100 by 2015.

Supporters say there aren't enough teachers from South Dakota universities willing to live on reservations, and the program helps fill education gaps between Native American and non-tribal students.

The House voted 61-9 Tuesday, sending it back to the Senate.

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