A few headlines from a recent internet search on K-12 relief funding in schools include “What Congressional Covid Funding Means for K-12 Schools,” “States Scramble to Disburse K-12 Relief Funds Ahead of Deadline,” and “States are Waffling Over Billions in K-12 Federal Relief. Schools Are Getting Antsy.” Clearly, educators want clear-cut information on funding including how much, ways to use it, and when to expect it.
In late December of last year, Congress approved the Consolidated Appropriations Act 2021 in response to the challenges the Covid-19 pandemic has created. In the CAA, over $54 billion is available for K-12 schools to use, which is in addition to what was provided in the CARES Act ($13.2 billion). The purpose of these funds includes purchasing materials and education technology to address learning loss and improve school facilities and infrastructure to reduce the risk of transmitting the coronavirus. Funding will be available through September 2022. There will be instructions from both the federal government and each state to explain the process the overall process of using the funding.