Education Department approves Michigan plan to use rescue funds, distributes $1.2 billion

Posted at 12:00 PM, Oct 08, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-08 12:00:13-04

(WXYZ) — The U.S. Department of Education has approved Michigan's plan to use American Rescue Plan funds to support schools.

With the approval, the feds have distributed the remaining $1.2 billion to the state, which it will use to reopen and sustain the safe operation of schools and expand opportunities to students who need it most.

Under the plan, the state will have collaborative partnerships between districts and health departments for COVID-19 vaccine clinics and also COVID-19 testing to help keep kids in school.

The state health department is also providing over $24 million in federal funding to hire 220 health resource advocates to help support COVID-19 testing and reporting.

According to the education department, school districts can also get state funds to help address academic and social-emotional needs of student populations most affected by the pandemic.

“It is heartening to see, reflected in these state plans, the ways in which states are thinking deeply about how to use American Rescue Plan funds to continue to provide critical support to schools and communities, particularly as we enter the upcoming academic year," Education Secretary Miguel Cardona said in a release. "The approval of these plans enables states to receive vital, additional American Rescue Plan funds to quickly and safely reopen schools for full-time, in-person learning; meet students’ academic, social, emotional, and mental health needs."

“Our state ARP plan will help Michigan students better rebound from the disrupted learning that they experienced during the past year,” Michigan’s State Superintendent Dr. Michael Rice added in a release. “I am very pleased that Secretary Cardona and the U.S. Department of Education approved our state plan and released the remaining $1.24 billion in federal funds for Michigan schools to improve our schools in myriad ways for children.”