State schools get $50 mil­lion more in emer­gency fund­ing

Chicago Sun-Times - - TOP NEWS - BY CLARE PROC­TOR, STAFF RE­PORTER cproc­tor@sun­ | @ce­proc­tor23

Pub­lic schools across the state will re­ceive an ad­di­tional $50 mil­lion from the gov­er­nor’s emer­gency ed­u­ca­tion re­lief fund, Gov. J.B. Pritzker an­nounced Tues­day.

The money will go to­ward clos­ing the dig­i­tal di­vide and train­ing ed­u­ca­tors and fam­i­lies to as­sist stu­dents in us­ing tech­nol­ogy.

It also will help launch a stu­dent care depart­ment within the State Board of Ed­u­ca­tion, equip­ping school dis­tricts to sup­port stu­dents who’ve ex­pe­ri­enced trauma.

The $3 bil­lion gov­er­nor’s emer­gency ed­u­ca­tion re­lief fund was es­tab­lished as part of the coro­n­avirus stim­u­lus bill. The U.S. Depart­ment of Ed­u­ca­tion granted the money to gover­nors to sup­port schools dur­ing an emer­gency. Illi­nois was al­lot­ted about $108.5 mil­lion from that $3 bil­lion and has one year to award the funds; un­spent money will be re­turned to the fed­eral gov­ern­ment.

To date, the state has awarded more than $100 mil­lion to school dis­tricts this fall from the emer­gency fund. Dis­tricts also re­ceived $512 mil­lion di­rectly from the coro­n­avirus re­lief bill, Pritzker said at a news con­fer­ence Tues­day an­nounc­ing an ex­pan­sion to the state’s ap­pren­tice­ship pro­gram.

“De­spite the ex­tra­or­di­nary chal­lenges of COVID-19, I re­main com­mit­ted to a fun­da­men­tal prin­ci­ple about ed­u­ca­tion,” Pritzker said. “Ev­ery Illi­noisan, no mat­ter the color of their skin, no mat­ter where they live, no mat­ter what their in­come level is, de­serves a high-qual­ity ed­u­ca­tion from cra­dle to ca­reer.”

With the Trump ad­min­is­tra­tion press­ing for stu­dents to re­turn to class­rooms this fall, Pritzker said his No. 1 pri­or­ity is the health of stu­dents, teach­ers, para­pro­fes­sion­als and par­ents.


Gov. J.B. Pritzker on Tues­day an­nounces money for state pub­lic schools to help as­sist stu­dents with tech­nol­ogy.

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