Michigan Governor Signs Bill to Fund Schools’ COVID Recovery Efforts
LANSING. Mich.— Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer joined students and staff on Wednesday at Ojibwa Elementary in Macomb county to sign a bill that appropriates $4.4 billion in federal COVID relief funding to schools.
According to a release, House Bill 4421 represents bipartisan work completed last June and will support schools across Michigan to help students and teachers recover from the pandemic through federal funding. It is meant to address a range of needs such as reopening schools safely, sustaining safe operations, and addressing students’ social, emotional, and academic needs resulting from the pandemic.
“Our actions today prove that Republicans and Democrats in Lansing can work together to enact budgets that are laser-focused on helping Michigan take full advantage of the unprecedented opportunity we have right now to make transformative investments in our schools that will have positive impacts for generations,” Whitmer said.
The funds will be distributed to districts based on their Title I, Part A allocation, which means more money will get to districts that serve students with the highest need.
Kevin Polston, superintendent of Kentwood Public Schools and chair of the Student Recovery Advisory Council, said these resources would ensure students, parents and schools have what they need to “experience success.”
“With these vital funds, recovery plans have the resources to provide the academic, physical, mental, emotional, and community support students need to thrive,” Polston said. “We are grateful to Governor Whitmer and the bipartisan legislators who came together to get these crucial federal recovery dollars into our schools. Now we can all get to work putting the needs of Michigan’s kids first.”
The bill distributes over $4 billion from the federal Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief to fund schools’ efforts to get children back on track after the pandemic. A total of $841 million comes from ESSER II funding from December, and $3.3 billion comes from ESSER III funding through President Biden’s American Rescue Plan.
State Rep. Regina Weiss, a Democrat, said she was proud to have partnered with the governor on the bill to support teachers and support staff as they help students through the pandemic, according to a release.
“This bill will send billions of federal COVID relief dollars directly into our schools and classrooms for PPE, support staff, academic intervention, mental health services, air quality improvements, and more,” Weiss said. “This critical support will help students across Michigan return to learning and sets a strong foundation moving forward for what meaningful investments in education should look like.”
The bill provides supplemental funding for the current school year budget, while legislation for the next fiscal year budget beginning Oct. 1 is currently being reviewed.
In The News
In The States
FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear's veto of a bill aimed at transgender health care puts the state in the... Read More
FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear's veto of a bill aimed at transgender health care puts the state in the middle of a national fight, but with more immediate consequences as the state's looming election offers an early test on the state-by-state assault on gender-affirming care... Read More
ROLLING FORK, Miss. (AP) — Powerful tornadoes tore through the Deep South on Friday night, killing at least 23 people... Read More
ROLLING FORK, Miss. (AP) — Powerful tornadoes tore through the Deep South on Friday night, killing at least 23 people in Mississippi, obliterating dozens of buildings and leaving an especially devastating mark in a rural town whose mayor declared, “My city is gone.” The Mississippi Emergency... Read More
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — In Florida, Republican lawmakers have introduced a bevy of new legislation that will, if passed, restrict certain... Read More
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — In Florida, Republican lawmakers have introduced a bevy of new legislation that will, if passed, restrict certain health educational materials used in state schools. One such bill, House Bill 1069, would limit children below sixth grade from discussing their menstrual cycles in school. ... Read More
RAVENSWOOD, W. Va. — Like a lot of communities in America’s heartland, Jackson County, West Virginia, was built on natural... Read More
RAVENSWOOD, W. Va. — Like a lot of communities in America’s heartland, Jackson County, West Virginia, was built on natural resources. Timber and energy wrought from the ground helped sustain and grow its population, and the arrival of manufacturing in the mid-1950s — in the guise... Read More
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — A South Carolina barbecue chain known for its pro-segregation stance in a landmark 1960s case and... Read More
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — A South Carolina barbecue chain known for its pro-segregation stance in a landmark 1960s case and its embrace of the Confederate flag in 2000 is facing allegations of racism and sexual harassment by the fired general manager of one of its restaurants.... Read More
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — A Medicaid expansion deal in North Carolina received final legislative approval on Thursday, ending a decade of debate... Read More
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — A Medicaid expansion deal in North Carolina received final legislative approval on Thursday, ending a decade of debate over whether the closely politically divided state should accept the federal government's coverage for hundreds of thousands of low-income adults. North Carolina is one of several... Read More