(Washington, D.C.) – U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), the top Democrat on the Senate education committee and a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, announced new funding that she helped to secure in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act that will help support primary and secondary education across Washington state. The funding, totaling $216.9 million, will be distributed to schools across the state, with $195.2 million being distributed on a formula basis to school districts.
“As we all work to stem the spread of this virus, I applaud our students and educators who have been working hard to adapt to the constraints of social distancing,” Senator Murray said. “The federal government has a responsibility during this pandemic to support educators and help put children in Washington state and across the country in the best position to learn and succeed, and I’m going to continue fighting to make sure Congress is doing its part in this effort.”
Specifically, the funding comes to Washington state through the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund (ESSER Fund) established in the CARES Act to allow states and local school districts to flexibly support schools and students working to address the many education challenges that have arisen due to the COVID-19 pandemic and response. During negotiations for the CARES Act, Senator Murray successfully pushed to include more than $30 billion dollars for K-12 schools and higher education so that educators and students have the resources and tools they need to adapt to the limitations of distance learning and the current global health crisis.