Broward County Public Schools is Awarded Federal Project Safe Grant for State Sanctions Related to COVID-19

Broward County Public Schools (BCPS) has been awarded $420,957 in federal funding from the U.S. Department of Education (USDOE) Project Safe grant. The USDOE notified Broward County School Board Chair Dr. Rosalind Osgood and Interim Superintendent Dr. Vickie L. Cartwright on Tuesday, September 28, that the District’s grant application has been approved.

The Project Safe grant reimburses school districts that are financially penalized by state governments for implementing strategies to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in schools, such as requiring masks. The Broward County School Board voted to uphold its current Facial Covering Policy on July 28, 2021, due to the rise in

COVID-19 conditions across the community at that time. 

In August 2021, the Florida Department of Education began withholding $35,080 each month from the District’s funding allocation. This amount represents 1/12 of all nine Broward County School Board members’ annual salaries. To date, $70,160 has been withheld by the state, with the most recent funding withheld on Friday, September 24.

“We are grateful for the support of the federal government in helping us continue to protect our students and staff from COVID-19,” said Interim Superintendent Dr. Cartwright. “I support our School Board for their focus on doing what is in the best interest of our families to ensure our schools continue to provide safe and healthy learning environments.”

“Every student across the country deserves the opportunity to return to school in-person safely this fall, and every family should be confident that their school is implementing policies that keep their children safe,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona. “We should be thanking districts for using proven strategies that will keep schools open and safe, not punishing them. We stand with the dedicated educators doing the right thing to protect their school communities, and this program will allow them to continue that critical work of keeping students safe.”

To date, BCPS is one of two Florida school districts to receive the Project Safe grant

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