The Congressional CARES Act includes Higher Education Relief Funding aimed to provide grants for students needing to cover housing, food, healthcare, and course materials, but many colleges and universities are seeking aid to address their own coronavirus-related institutional losses, according to a report in Refinery 29.
“We’re projecting losses of around $49 million through August as a result of student housing refunds, meal plan refunds, paid sick and family leave, and other losses,” said Mark Schlueb, the University of Central Florida’s Director of Strategic Communications.
According to the article, many universities are reporting financial losses from the spring term, and a 15% drop in enrollment is predicted for the upcoming academic year. More than 70 academic institutions recently sent a letter to members of congress and the senate requesting that the next coronavirus stimulus package include at least $175 million for nationwide education, with $50 million earmarked for higher education.
“We can’t forfeit America’s future – that’s why we’re urging Congress to take up and pass a $250 billion package for education funding in the next COVID bill,” the American Federation for Teachers president, Randi Weingarten, says. “Congress has a choice – it can stand with Donald Trump, who cares only for his wealthy friends, or it can stand with teachers and nurses, who are getting us through this crisis and will continue to do so in its aftermath.”
Read more about the need for coronavirus higher education aid funding here.