Sen. Chuck Schumer on Sunday said if the Trump administration wants schools to reopen safely in New York and across the country this fall, the federal government will have to boost funding to help with some of the costs.
“Everyone wants our schools to reopen, but the federal government must lead the way by funding the safety measures that would open the doors of New York and the nation’s schools in a way that helps ensure the coronavirus does not needlessly spread or infect teachers, kids or staff,” the New York Democrat said during a briefing.
Schumer wants the feds to fork over $175 billion for the effort. Without the funds to help cover the costs of Personal Protection Equipment and cleaning supplies, local governments could be hit with sky-high expenses that would devastate their budgets, he argued.
In that case, “local taxes could rise and some schools might simply stay closed — and we do not want that. That’s why we need to take action in ‘COVID-4’ and commit $175 billion to the goal of safely reopening K-12 schools for all,” Schumer, the Senate minority leader, said.
Schumer, along with Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.), proposed a legislative package — called the Coronavirus Child Care and Education Relief Act — that he says would “substantially” cover the costs of reopening K-12 schools.
It would also provide help for child care, tuition relief, efforts to prevent child abuse and neglect, and implement public health measures.
“The bottom line here is that the coronavirus brought with it unprecedented health and economic challenges for students, families, educators, and learning institutions across the country — challenges disproportionately felt by students of color, students from low-income families, students with disabilities, and more,” Schumer said.
“So action is needed now to save teaching jobs, preserve millions of child care slots, and ensure every student has access to a safe, quality education,” he said.
Source: Newzandar News