South Carolina schools receive another $84M in state funding to support reopening needs


South Carolina will provide an additional $84 million for public school districts to support reopening schools for in-person learning, the South Carolina Department of Education has announced.

Each of the state’s 81 public school districts will receive state funds based on the number of students enrolled. Allocation of funds will be weighted for students in poverty.

“Our teachers, nurses and school staff have gone above and beyond to support students throughout the COVID-19 pandemic,” State Education Superintendent Molly Spearman said. “These funds are to be used to maintain and support their efforts to welcome additional students back safely for face-to-face instruction and meet the needs of those that are struggling both online and in the classroom.”

The funds may be used for four purposes, including purchasing personal protective equipment, hiring school nurses, hiring staff for one-on-one instruction and student support, and purchasing equipment to support online learning. School districts will be required to report how they use the funds to the SCDOE.

Funding is drawn from the state’s allocation of the Coronavirus Relief Fund, designated for education by the South Carolina Legislature earlier this year. Funds can be used for expenses incurred between July 1, 2020, and Sept. 30, 2021.

The $84 million is in addition to $50 million in personal protective equipment and safety supplies already purchased by the state and delivered to school districts. It adds to the $195 million allocated to school districts through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act to be used for COVID-19-related expenses.

As of last month, South Carolina had spent 39 percent of federal COVID-19 relief funds allocated to education through the Education Stabilization Fund, according to the U.S. Department of Education.

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