ANNAPOLIS, MD—Governor Larry Hogan and the Maryland State Department of Education on Wednesday announced $10 million in grant awards to support Maryland schools, both public and nonpublic, as they continue to address the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. The funding provides $1 million grants to 10 programs that address the needs of at-risk students.
“An essential part of Maryland’s recovery depends on giving every single child in Maryland the ability to safely return for in-person learning,” said Governor Larry Hogan. “These funds will help provide support for our students who have suffered most in the pandemic, and help address learning loss experienced during virtual learning.”
“During this unprecedented time, we are focused on keeping classrooms safe and accessible to all students and addressing the academic and socio-emotional challenges that have arisen due to COVID-19,” said Karen B. Salmon, Ph.D., State Superintendent of Schools. “We are happy to support these innovative efforts by our partners to maintain connections between educators and students as we move forward.”
Awarded through the federal Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act (CRRSA), the funding provides grants to local school systems and nonpublic schools that demonstrate unique strategies to address academic accessibility as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Governor Hogan directed a portion of the funding to at-risk students through the Governor’s Emergency Education Relief II (GEER II) Fund.
Grant recipients were selected for presenting creative strategies to support disengaged students, students with disabilities, teachers, and families in need. Projects include initiatives such as mentor and mental health programs, personalized academic support, and expanded re-engagement.
Grant recipients include: Baltimore City Public Schools; Carroll County Public Schools; Children’s Guild; Harford County Public Schools; Montgomery County Public Schools; Prince George’s County Public Schools; Queen Anne’s County Public Schools; Reid Temple Christian Academy; Wicomico County Public Schools; and Worcester County Public Schools.
With its grant, for example, Worcester County Public Schools will launch “Worcester on Wheels, Bringing the Classroom to our Community.” This new project will provide academic, outreach and family focused events with proactive visits by two recreational vehicles. Each recreational vehicle will be customized with fully stocked tutoring and interventional materials, social and emotional learning activities, needed technology, capability for outdoor tutoring services, an outdoor kitchen, and built-in Wi-Fi access. These vehicles will travel to communities to support our students and families.
The State of Maryland has provided more than $1.2 billion in emergency funding for education related to COVID-19 response and recovery. In February, Governor Hogan submitted a supplemental budget that included $931 million in funding for local school systems in support and targeted assistance for the safe reopening of public schools. Last week, the governor and the presiding officers of the General Assembly announced that more than $600 million from the American Rescue Plan Act will be dedicated to supporting the safe reopening of Maryland schools.