Brown calls for more support for schools during pandemic

Published 12:00 am Saturday, September 19, 2020

Senator says Republicans continue to stall

WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, hosted a news conference on Wednesday in which he demanded President Donald Trump, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, and Senate Republicans act to help schools educate students amid the pandemic.

Brown said, right now, many schools across Ohio are reopening, both in-person and virtually, and are facing the challenges of not having enough funding and support to adequately protect and support teachers, schoolchildren and school administrators as they seek to provide a high-quality education for students.

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Brown has called for at least $175 billion to help support K-12 students and schools during the pandemic and has also been urging Senate Republicans to pass the Heroes Act, which the House passed months ago.

Brown said this legislation includes $90 billion for public schools, K-12 and higher education, to reopen safely and that the funding also does not condition federal dollars on reopening in-person instruction.

Brown said he believes school districts need to make the right decision for their students, educators and staff, and Trump’s and Senate Republicans’ efforts to condition aid on in-person classes and shift federal funds to school privatization efforts would hurt students and undermine public education.

Brown said the bill also includes critical funding for state and local governments, so communities can help replace the revenue they have lost as a result of the pandemic. He said the federal government needs to help make these communities whole, or they could face a devastating choice of having to lay off teachers, first responders, public works officials and more.

Brown said he is also pressing Republicans to stop stalling relief efforts and help Democrats pass critical assistance for grandparents and other relatives who are caring for school-aged children in a guardian capacity.