from CAPE December 22, 2020

Congress approved massive new COVID relief legislation late Monday night that includes a $2.75 billion set-aside for private schools.  President Trump is expected to sign the bill in the coming days.

State Education Agencies will administer the private school funds with a mandate to prioritize schools “that enroll low-income students and are most impacted” by the pandemic.

The bill is written such that a public agency will maintain control of funds in much the same way as occurs with existing equitable services programs.  This should in theory insulate private schools from becoming recipients of federal financial assistance.

Private schools will not be allowed to accept aid both under this program and the new round of the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) that the bill authorizes: they will have to choose one or the other.  Schools that participated in a previous round of PPP will still be eligible.

The January edition of CAPE Outlook will have more details.  Thank you to all who contacted Congress on behalf of private schools!