Schools across New York are set to receive $ 3 billion in federal aid to help students, parents and teachers deal with the challenges of returning to the classroom after more than a year of hiatus from the COVID-19 pandemic.
The federal government on Thursday backed the state Department of Education’s plan to help schools with academic assistance, early learning, and mental health needs as schools set a goal for classroom teaching.
Education officials expect major challenges, including catching up with students who have struggled with distance learning and may have fallen academically as a result. At the same time, schools will have to enact rules in the next month to prevent the virus from spreading and specify the wearing of masks indoors.
Funding is coming to New York and other states through the American Rescue Plan, a pot of money previously approved by Congress as part of a wider effort to recover from the pandemic.
“It is encouraging to see how these state plans reflect the way states are giving careful thought to how to use the American Rescue Plan’s funds to continue providing critical support to schools and communities, especially as we are in go the summer and look ahead. “To the coming academic year,” said US Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona.
There are 398 districts in the state that have state high needs status that receive grants to help students affected by lost class time and allow schools to spend more money on summer classes.
The state is also distributing $ 195 million for full-time pre-kindergarten programs for children ages 4 and up.