Congress has passed COVID-19 response legislation that provides more than $30 billion in emergency education funding for students, educators, schools, and institutions across the country. With most elementary and secondary schools closed and college students faced with closed campus, this funding will help displaced students afford basic essentials, help educators adapt to long-term school closures, fund purchases for online learning materials, and provide a lifeline to cash-strapped institutions.
SUPPORT FOR STUDENTS
- Student Loans Payment Support
- Suspends loan payments and prevents interest from accruing on all federal student loans through September.
- Halts all involuntary collection of federal student loan debt, including wage garnishment and tax refund offset, through September.
- Encourages employers to implement student loan repayment programs by excluding up to $5,250 in qualifying student loan repayments paid by the employer on behalf of the employee from income for tax purposes through Dec. 31.
- Current Student Support
- Allows colleges to continue paying students using Federal Work Study even if the student is unable to work during the crisis.
- Ensures that any semester that a student is unable to complete as a result of the crisis is not counted against their Pell Grant or subsidized loan eligibility limit. Additionally, students will not be required to repay federal loans taken out the semester that is interrupted by COVID.
- Allows American students who are studying at a foreign institution to continue their education during this crisis by taking courses via distance ed or at a partnering U.S. based institution.
SUPPORT FOR PARENTS
- $3.5 billion for child care
- Supports child care providers through the crisis, even if providers are forced to close, and ensures that workers in the health care sector, emergency responders, sanitation workers, and other essential workers have access to child care to enable them to work.
- $750 million for Head Start
- Ensures children and families enrolled in Head Start continue receiving services, to the extent possible, and provides funding for summer programming in areas of the country that will be ready to reopen by then.
SUPPORT FOR SCHOOLS
- $13 billion to support school districts
- Covers a wide range of activities, including cleaning and sanitizing schools, purchasing educational technology such as laptops and hotspot devices, training educators to use online learning tools, ensuring access to education for students with disabilities, and providing students emergency funding for food, housing, and other basic essentials. Funds are available through formula-grants to states, which will then distribute at least 90 percent of funds to local educational agencies
- $14 billion for higher education emergency relief
- Provides funds for institutions of higher education to prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus. The funds may be used to defray expenses for institutions of higher education, such as lost revenue, technology costs associated with a transition to distance education, and grants to students for food, housing, course materials, technology, health care, and childcare. Of this amount, $1 billion will provide support to Minority Serving Institutions.
- $3 billion total for State Governors
- Provides funding to Governors to allocate at their discretion as emergency support grants to local educational agencies that the State educational agency deems have been most significantly impacted by coronavirus. The funding will support the ability of such local educational agencies to continue to provide educational services to their students and to support the on-going operations of the local educational agency; and provide emergency support through grants to institutions of higher education serving students within the State.
- $308 million in grants to States
- Provides states with the highest coronavirus burdens.
- $100 million for Project School Emergency to Violence (SERV)
- Supports Project SERV with targeted grants to elementary and secondary schools and colleges and universities to respond to the immediate needs of coronavirus and the impact on students.
SUPPORT FOR VOLUNTEER CORPS
Ensures that AmeriCorps volunteers whose service has been disrupted by COVID-19 can still earn their education awards and that National Civilian Community Corps (NCCC) volunteers can re-enroll if their service if it is interrupted by COVID-19 up to the age of 26, and creates additional flexibilities for grantees and the Corporation of National and Community Service to fulfill their financial obligation.