Public, private education associations respond to COVID-19 response bill

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The National Education Association – the nation's largest union representing more than three million teachers and other educators working in U.S. public schools, colleges and universities – today released the following joint statement with 16 other public and private education associations on the latest phase of the COVID-19 stimulus package moving through the U.S. Senate:

“As representatives of the K-12 public and private schools, administrators, educators, parents and students who are attempting to continue teaching and learning during this national emergency, we are shocked and dismayed by recent reports that suggest that Congress will not provide direct funding for remote and distance learning in this bill. While we appreciate that connectivity and devices to facilitate remote and distance learning will be allowable uses — along with numerous other items — of the Education Stabilization Fund included within it, we cannot understand Congress’ reluctance to provide adequate direct funding for hotspots, connection devices and mobile wireless service through the long-standing and very effective E-Rate program.

“We view the potential outcome of this bill as a missed opportunity for Congress to address the real and urgent problem of the homework gap, which denotes the between 7 and 12 million K-12 students, many of who live in rural areas or are from low-income families, that lack Internet access at home. We urge Congress to include in the final bill the robust remote and distance learning provisions found in the House’s version of this bill and ensure that all students can continue their education online for the duration of this national emergency.”

The statement was signed by:

  • AASA: The School Superintendents Association
  • American Federation of School Administrators
  • American Federation of Teachers
  • Association of Education Service Agencies
  • Association of School Business Officials International
  • Consortium for School Networking
  • International Society for Technology in Education
  • National Association of Elementary School Principals
  • National Association of Independent Schools
  • National Association of Secondary School Principals
  • National Catholic Educational Association
  • National Education Association
  • National PTA
  • National Rural Education Association
  • National Rural Education Advocacy Consortium
  • National School Boards Association
  • State Educational Technology Directors Association

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