California Challenges Federal Rule Diverting Coronavirus Relief To Private Schools

Betsy DeVos Demands Schools Fully Reopen -- No Distance Learning, No Part-Time Classrooms

Michigan AG Nessel takes legal action against US Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos over CARES Act interpretation

DeVos also criticized many schools' attempts at distance education after the pandemic prompted them to move classes online last spring. Trump applauded Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis for his state's recent order to open public schools this fall. "There is nothing in the law Congress passed that would allow districts to discriminate against children and teachers based on private school attendance and employment".

"Private schools that cease to exist will just create an added burden for public schools", he said.

She says schools must be "fully operational" even amid the pandemic and anything less fails students and taxpayers. "This is unacceptable, particularly in the midst of a pandemic and given a significant decline in state revenue".

"And now this fall they are suggesting that as a way to start school again you can choose zero days a week for your child to be in school or two days a week", she continued.

"Secretary DeVos has made a decision to use this public health crisis as another opportunity to advance her personal privatization agenda", Nessel said. At a time when MI schools are facing an unprecedented crisis, every single child deserves the chance to succeed.

"Michigan kids simply can not afford for Betsy DeVos to play politics with their education and that's why I am committed to using all of the resources at my disposal to fight for and on behalf of our students, teachers, and schools", said Nessel.

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The money is supposed to be for specific coronavirus related expenses such as the purchase of PPE, professional development, and technology for remote instruction. Congress directed that the money be distributed to the nation's low-income districts, through the federal Title I formula for determining student poverty.

Low-income students in private schools by law are entitled to Title I money for "equitable services", such as transportation and tutoring. The policy outlined how districts should distribute CARES Act funding to private schools based on student populations.

At one point Cavuto brought up concerns from teachers worried about reopenings because they're more vulnerable to the virus, adding, "Tthere are a lot of parents listening to us right now and they might be anxious about, especially in areas where there are spikes, whether their kids are safe".

Nessel, with support from Governor Whitmer, filed as the State of MI a complaint for declaratory and injunctive relief in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California on Tuesday, over the rule which requires local education agencies (LEAs) to choose between two methods for allocating CARES Act funds rather than distributing the money based on Title One, Part A allocations as required in the act.

The legal complaint filed with the United States' District Court System asks that DeVos' rule is deemed unlawful.

California Attorney General Xavier Becerra and Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel announced the lawsuit, which was joined by Maine, New Mexico, Wisconsin and the District of Columbia.

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