Private School Support in CARES Act
The CARES Act provides each governor with a discretionary “Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Fund” to provide financial assistance to local education agencies, institutions of higher education, and education-related entities that have been greatly impacted by COVID-19.
Join us as we respectfully ask Governor Baker to consider allocating a portion of the funds provided to him through the Fund for relief to private schools across the state. Read the letter and fill out the form below.
Dear Governor Baker,
The COVID-19 impacts on the State of Massachusetts have placed stresses on nearly all of the state’s capacities. While it’s too soon to quantify the full extent of the recovery effort that will be necessary, we are thankful the federal government has stepped forward to provide much needed assistance, through the CARES Act, to those most impacted by COVID-19.
As you know, the CARES Act provides each governor with a discretionary “Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Fund” to provide financial assistance to local education agencies, institutions of higher education, and education-related entities that have been greatly impacted by COVID-19.
Private schools in Massachusetts serve over 80,000 students statewide across hundreds of schools. Many of them are small and independent. Despite common belief, the vast majority of these schools serve the poor and the lower middle class. Like public schools, private schools in the state have continued to provide meals to needy students and families as well as remote learning (including for families without home internet and technology). They have done so while continuing to help their own staff members meet family obligations. But unlike public schools who continue to receive state funding through the Evidence Based Formula, private schools rely almost exclusively on the generosity of the donor community as well as family tuition payments.
COVID-19 has exacerbated the difficultly in raising needed financial support for schools. Many private school parents have found themselves laid off entirely; many more find themselves hard-pressed to make tuition payments.
Private schools are in a crisis of uncertainty. Families struggling to provide a private school education to their children, some of whom work two and three jobs to do so, are in a crisis of uncertainty. As Governor, you have the opportunity to provide schools and families assurance and resources so that they are not waging this fight alone.
We respectfully ask that you consider allocating a portion of the funds provided to you through the “Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Fund” contained in the CARES Act for relief to private schools across the state. We will continue to serve our communities, families and students no matter what. But our resources are limited, and our ability to support and strengthen Massachusetts’ social safety net will be far stronger with your help.
CC: James Peyser, Secretary of Education and Jeffrey C. Riley, Commissioner of Education
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