Colorado Catholics urged to voice support for equitable distribution of school relief funds
DENVER. The Colorado Catholic Conference issued an “Action Alert” on June 9 asking people to contact their state legislators to request that the Colorado Department of Education release COVID-19 relief funds for nonpublic schools based on federal guidelines.
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) included an Education Stabilization Fund for both elementary and secondary schools, and required equitable services for nonpublic schools under both grants.
However, the Colorado Department of Education is disregarding federal guidance on the distribution of relief funds by basing its distribution to nonpublic schools on the number of students whose families are at or below the federal poverty line, the conference said. The policy effectively excludes most Catholic schools from receiving relief funds, even though that was not the intent of CARES.
“Without a fair share of relief funding, our already financially- stretched Catholic schools will be faced with an additional hardship in trying to absorb the expenses needed to ensure schools can reopen safely and continue to provide a quality education to students,” the conference stated.