Jon believes public education is the foundation of America's democracy. As a former public school student, teacher, and school board member, Jon knows how important access to a quality public education is to Montana's rural way of life—and that begins as early as pre-kindergarten. From Glendive to Ravalli County, Jon has secured millions of dollars to support Montana’s Head Start programs, ensuring that Montana kids have the tools they need to thrive right out of the gate.
Jon is committed to ensuring schools in Montana and across rural America can recruit and retain top-notch teachers. In order to boost teacher recruitment in rural Montana, Jon introduced the Rural Educator Support and Training (REST) Act and the Native Educator Support and Training (NEST) Act. These bills work to address the shortages of educators in Montana, both in Indian Country and at large. The REST and NEST Acts strengthen teacher workforce by providing scholarships, loan forgiveness, and professional development opportunities to educators who commit to work in rural schools. Montana’s future leaders deserve the best of the best when it comes to their education, and getting America’s brightest teachers in rural classrooms is the first step.
He is also working with teachers, parents, school board members, and administrators to ensure that policies coming out of Washington D.C. don't stifle creativity in the classroom. He helped roll back provisions of No Child Left Behind, has passed legislation to strengthen local control over our state's schools, and has pushed back against efforts to privatize public education and divert critical resources away from schools with limited resources.
Jon believes education doesn’t stop at high school, and he is working to make it easier for Montanans to continue learning. He knows to achieve this, we’ve got to make college more affordable and ensure job training and apprenticeship programs stay up and running. By restoring year-round Pell Grants, supporting the Perkins Loan and Public Service Loan Forgiveness Programs, and continuing investments in to programs like Job Corps and TRIO, Jon is fighting to ensure that a price tag does not determine anyone’s opportunity to learn.
April 2, 2021| View More
Tester Brings in More Than $12 Million in Critical Support for Montana Counties Through Secure Rural Schools Program
Following his years long effort to revive and protect the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act (SRS), U.S. Senator Jon Tester is announcing that Montana will receive $12,197,140.10 as part of the program, helping to fund critical county-run services like law enforcement, schools, and roads.
March 30, 2021| View More
In Kalispell, Tester Talks Benefits of COVID Relief with Small Business Owners & Community Leaders, Stops By Kalispell VA Vaccine Clinic
While in Kalispell today, U.S. Senator Jon Tester visited Kalispell Brewing Company to discuss how the American Rescue Plan-the recent COVID relief package-will directly benefit small businesses, schools, and the local Flathead community. He also stopped by the Kalispell Veterans' Administration (VA) vaccine clinic to speak to volunteers and staff …
March 24, 2021| View More
Tester Reintroduces Bipartisan Bill to Boost First-Generation, Low-Income Students Through Improvements to TRIO
Continuing his efforts to bolster educational opportunities for underserved Montana youth, U.S. Senator Jon Tester is joining bipartisan colleagues Susan Collins (R-ME), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), and Shelly More Capito (R-WV) in the push to strengthen TRIO programs through the reintroduction of the Educational Opportunity and Success Act.
March 22, 2021| View More
U.S. Senator Jon Tester today announced that Bozeman's Human Resource Development Council will receive $1,665,637 in U.S. Department of Health and Human Services funding to continue providing Head Start early education opportunities and child care services for families in Gallatin Valley.
March 12, 2021| View More
U.S. Senator Jon Tester congratulated Billings' Nate Dewar today on his appointments to the U.S. Air Force Academy.