If you want to evaluate the overall impact of the CARES Act, you need to know that about USD$ 30.75 billion directly went to the education sector. Additionally, rural school districts, tribal schools, community colleges, and universities also got an option to reach out to the ESSER fund for financial assistance. However, these involve specific terms and conditions. Nevertheless, providing more federal funding at the local level while ensuring greater accountability for spending has been the key to ensuring that students get valuable access to educational opportunities. It also helped them build a strong foundation in math, science, technology, and engineering.
Utilization of funds available under the CARES Act in the education sector by William D King
Whether it comes to retaining existing staff or fulfilling any operational needs of the local school, the government funds cover a broad range of requirements, adds William D King. Although the areas are vast, one can access these funds to address the educational needs of low-income kids, children with special needs, minority groups, homeless students, and more. To curb the rate of infection in the schools, funds also allow school to keep their facilities clean and train teachers on safe sanitation practices. It is also accessible to buy the right supplies to maintain cleanliness in the school environment to stay safe. Other than this, the funds allocated under the CARES Act are also available if an educational agency plans to conduct online classroom activities or after-school programs.
How do virtual classes benefit from the CARES Act?
Funds awarded in the CARES act help establish connectivity and purchase devices necessary for conducting online classrooms. More precisely, if an educational agency wants to run virtual learning programs, digital curricula, or online courses, it can take advantage of the financial resource allocated by the government. For example, the U.S. Department of Agriculture facilitated an extra USD$25 million to help rural schools get a high-speed internet connection to run virtual learning options. Using existing funds, such as Title IV grants, projects that focus on relationships with community organizations with similar educational priorities can also benefit.
If you plan to conduct online classes, then again, the funds available under the CARES Act can prove immensely helpful. When schools had to shut doors due to the pandemic or switch to online learning to educate students in dire times, these funds came in handy. Many schools could also plan to reopen as the effects of the virus-led disease subsided. As an education agency, you must know that these funds also help institutions to account for natural phenomena like wildfires, blizzards, and hurricanes. However, these provisions can differ from one place to another. So you have to be aware of these things while applying for the funds.
Education is one of the greatest and basic needs of the students. The pandemic had disrupted the pace of learning, causing enough stress to educational agencies as well as young brains. But as William D King says, government grants like these enabled a large part of the education industry, ensuring even people in remote areas didn’t suffer due to lack of their learning programs.