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Congressman Jim Himes on Wednesday joined Mayor Joe Ganim, Superintendent of Schools Michael Testani and several members of the City Council to announce funding for Bridgeport that is included in the American Rescue Plan. The legislation provides more than $127 million for primary and secondary education and over $113 million in municipal assistance to support critical services.
See below, some instances the money can be spent, per Congressman Himes’ office:
— Bridgeport will receive roughly $113.85M
— $85.16M in direct local aid
— $28.69M in county aid that is redistributed based on population<
— For costs incurred by December 31, 2024 This funding can be used to:
–to respond to the public health emergency or its negative economic impacts, including assistance to households, small businesses, and nonprofits, or aid to impacted industries such as tourism, travel, and hospitality
— to respond to workers performing essential work during the COVID–19 public health emergency by providing premium pay to eligible workers of the metropolitan city, nonentitlement unit of local government, or county that are performing such essential work, or by providing grants to eligible employers that have eligible workers who perform essential work;
— for the provision of government services to the extent of the reduction in revenue of such metropolitan city, nonentitlement unit of local government, or county due to the COVID–19 public health emergency relative to revenues collected in the most recent full fiscal year of the metropolitan city, nonentitlement unit of local government, or county prior to the emergency
— make necessary investments in water, sewer, or broadband infrastructure
— Funding cannot be used for pensions
Elementary and Second School Emergency Relief Fund
— Rough estimate is Bridgeport will receive $127.349M.
— Funds must be used by September 30, 2023
— School districts are required to use not less than 20 percent of the funds to address learning loss through programs such as:
— summer learning or summer enrichment
— extended day
— comprehensive afterschool programs, or
— extended school year programs
— The rest of the funds have to be used for:
— Any activity authorized by
–* Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965
–* Individuals with Disabilities Education Act
–* Adult Education and Family Literacy Act
–* Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act of 2006
— School facility repairs and improvements to enable operation of schools to reduce risk of virus transmission and exposure to environmental health hazards, and to support student health needs.
— Inspection, testing, maintenance, repair, replacement, and upgrade projects to improve the indoor air quality in school facilities, including mechanical and non-mechanical heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems, filtering, purification and other air cleaning, fans, control systems, and window and door repair and replacement.
— Activities to address the unique needs of low-income children or students, children with disabilities, English learners, racial and ethnic minorities, students experiencing homelessness, and foster care youth, including how outreach and service delivery will meet the needs of each population.
— Purchasing supplies to sanitize and clean the facilities of a local educational agency, including buildings operated by such agency.
— Planning for, coordinating, and implementing activities during long-term closures, including providing meals to eligible students, providing technology for online learning to all students, providing guidance for carrying out requirements under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and ensuring other educational services can continue to be provided consistent with all Federal, State, and local requirements.
— Purchasing educational technology (including hardware, software, and connectivity) for students who are served by the local educational agency that aids in regular and substantive educational interaction between students and their classroom instructors, including low income students and children with disabilities, which may include assistive technology or adaptive equipment.
— Providing mental health services and supports, including through the implementation of evidence-based full-service community schools.
— Planning and implementing activities related to summer learning and supplemental afterschool programs, including providing classroom instruction or online learning during the summer months and addressing the needs of low income students, children with disabilities, English learners, migrant students, students experiencing homelessness, and children in foster care.
— Addressing learning loss among students, including low-income students, children with disabilities, English learners, racial and ethnic minorities, students experiencing homelessness, and children and youth in foster care, of the local educational agency, including by—
–* administering and using high-quality assessments that are valid and reliable, to accurately assess students’ academic progress and assist educators in meeting students’ academic needs, including through differentiating instruction;
–* implementing evidence-based activities to meet the comprehensive needs of students;
–* providing information and assistance to parents and families on how they can effectively support students, including in a distance learning environment; and
–* tracking student attendance and improving student engagement in distance education.
— Developing strategies and implementing public health protocols including, to the greatest extent practicable, policies in line with guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for the reopening and operation of school facilities to effectively maintain the health and safety of students, educators, and other staff.