Gibbons Sponors Bill To Help Rural Schools

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Rep. Jim Gibbons, R-Nev., introduced legislation Friday to ease some requirements of rural schools set by the No Child Left Behind Act.

The proposal would give teachers in rural counties a one-year deferment to gain state certification in their subject of instruction.

Currently the act requires teachers to be certified in all subjects they teach. Gibbons said that his bill would introduce "flexibility" to No Child Left Behind Act.

"Most rural schools are limited by the amount of interested applicants," Gibbons told the Daily Sparks Tribune. "They face the tremendous challenge of recruiting teachers."

Gibbons said that the new legislation will allow teachers in rural counties without certification to continue teaching.

"It allows them to keep teaching those subjects without mandatorily imposing a mandate," Gibbons said. "This is an effort to modify the legislation to meet the needs of rural school districts throughout the country."

The legislation would apply to 13 of Nevada's 17 counties.

The congressman said that his bill would make it easier for rural schools to keep teachers that they presently employ.

"It's very difficult to find teachers," Gibbons said, "let alone teachers who are qualified in every subject that they teach."