N.C. seeks DOD help in e-commerce support

The U.S. Department of Education recently launched a World Wide Web site (www.ed.gov/inits/construction) containing information on the Clinton Administration's $25 billion school modernization proposal. U.S. schools are overcrowded and in need of repair, the White House said in its proposal to fund renovations with $25 billion in tax credits. Those tax breaks could be applied to local bonds floated to renovate up to 6,000 schools. Most of the qualified schools serve large numbers of low-income students.

Education Secretary Richard Riley last year advised education leaders to plan for telecommunications and technology needs when building new schools. Other considerations include how schools' physical design supports new approaches to teaching and learning; how environments can be expanded to accommodate growing populations; and how schools can be designed to promote safety and discipline.

The pending school modernization effort also wraps in a 1997 effort -- the Qualified Zone Academy Bonds program -- that provides tax credits for educational outlays in designated Empowerment Zones. Also proposed is a new component that would allocate $400 million in modernization funding for schools serving American Indian children.

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