Broward County School District is calling on the state to provide the COVID-19 funding made available by the federal government.
“We’re all struggling with the loss of loved ones, the loss of coworkers, the loss of friends and family”, said Broward School Board Chair Dr. Rosalind Osgood.
Interim Superintendent Vickie Cartwright echoed the concerns saying the most recent impact is the death of another teacher. The district implemented a mask mandate in an attempt to protect other teachers, staff, and students, but their requirment of masks has officials are not releasing about $630 million in funding from the CARES Act.
“About 125 million approximately at your moms for charter schools within the Broward County School Board district our allocation specifically for the American rescue plan $509.9 million these are funds that have not been available to any district within the state of Florida,” said Cartwright.
The Superintendent wants that money to purchase smaller vehicles to help with the bus driver shortage, and contact tracing assistance to free up school administrators and nurses who are doing that job instead of performing their normal duties.
The state is also not releasing additional $256 million funds from the American Recovery Plan Act, signed by President Biden.
“All of these funds that are coming in have to go to the state of Florida. So it flows through the Department of Education and then it’s released out to us, at this point in time we are asking the dependent Education, our state, to create a process for us to be able to apply for these funds,” said Cartwright. “We don’t even have a process to ask to ask for these funds.”
The Miami-Dade County School Board approved a one-time stipend for employees receive the COVID vaccination.
Full-time and part-time employees have 60 days to submit proof of vaccination in order to receive $275.
"Obviously, we are targeting two groups. The first ones are the ones who have already been vaccinated. We are going to reward them for what they did. Secondly, those who are not vaccinated. We are going to quickly incentivise and motivate them to get the vaccine," Miami-Dade County Public Schools Superintendent Alberto Carvalho said, as 84% of Miami-Dade public school teachers are vaccinated. "We need more. We need all layers and levels of protection in place," Carvalho said.
On Wednesday night, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis' administration filed an emergency motion asking an appeals court to reinstate a stay on school mask mandates after a circuit judge allowed school districts to continue the mask requirements.
President Joe Biden announced new federal vaccine requirements in an all-out effort to increase COVID-19 vaccinations and curb the surging delta variant.
The White House's "Path Out of the Pandemic" plan, are expansive rules that will be enforced by the U.S. Department of Labor mandate that all employers with more than 100 workers require them to be vaccinated or test for the virus weekly. The 17 million workers at health facilities that receive federal Medicare or Medicaid also will have to be fully vaccinated.
Biden is also signing an executive order to require vaccination for employees of the executive branch and contractors who do business with the federal government.