Education Resources

When rural schools thrive, so do the towns and regions around them.

Read more about the organizations supporting rural education as well as grant opportunities available to educators.


Wisconsin Rural Schools Alliance

Wisconsin Rural Schools Alliance (WiRSA) provides a unified voice for rural schools at the local, state, and federal levels, celebrates the achievements of rural schools and curates research, news, events, and resources for rural educators, including the annual WiRSA conference.

Rural Schools Collaborative

The mission of the collaborative is to build sustainable rural communities through a keen focus on place, teachers, and philanthropy. That mission is realized through four signature efforts: The Place Network, Rural Teacher Corps, Grants in Place, and Impact Philanthropy.

Rural Education & Research Implementation Center (RERIC)

RERIC conducts rigorous, sophisticated, and interdisciplinary research responsive to needs identified by rural schools and communities; promotes implementation of evidence-based practices in rural school settings; and facilitates engagement among researchers, practitioners, families, and youth to maximize educational outcomes and general well-being.

National Rural Education Association

The National Rural Education Association helps rural educators by finding and helping them use resources needed to educate today’s students.  Consider joining them in Chattanooga, Tenn., in November for their national conference.


Full-Service Community Schools Program

This program supports planning, implementation, and operation of full-service community schools that improve the coordination, integration, accessibility, and effectiveness of services for children and families. It focuses particularly on children attending high-poverty schools, including high-poverty rural schools.

McCarthey Dressman Academic Enrichment Grants

These grants fund programs that nurture the intellectual, artistic, and creative abilities of children from low-income households. The McCarthey Dressman Education Foundation awards grants to individuals in amounts up to $10,000 per year for a maximum of $20,000 over two years, provided the eligibility requirements are met.

Association of American Educators Classroom Grants

Provides grants of up to $500 for classroom materials and projects. Application deadlines are March 1 and Oct. 1. Association members receive priority.

Wisconsin Improving Teacher Quality Grants

This UW System grant program provides large-scale grants for professional development across subject areas.

Compeer General Use Grants

This grant program, through Compeer Financial, funds programs and organizations whose work aligns with the mission of “enriching agriculture and rural America.”

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    Health Care Resources

    During public forums in 2020, hundreds of rural residents told the Governor’s Blue Ribbon Commission on Rural Prosperity that they need the state to make health services more accessible to them. Their suggestions are included here.

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    Agricultural Resources

    Read more about the organizations supporting rural agriculture as well as grants and other programs providing financial assistance those that feed us.

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    Placemaking resources

    Placemaking is a strategy that utilizes a local community’s assets, inspiration, and potential with the intention of creating public spaces that promote people’s health, happiness, and well-being.