First round of funds to be received next week.

The U.S. Department of Education (ED) announced today plans to distribute $800 million to help support the needs of students experiencing homelessness under the American Rescue Plan Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief – Homeless Children and Youth (ARP-HCY) fund. ED announced the state allocations for the $800 million total allocated in the American Rescue Plan and will distribute $200 million in funding on Monday.

Mississippi is set to receive $10.7 million, with $2.7 million set to be handed down next week.

Alongside the announcement, the Department issued a letter to Chief State School Officers underscoring the urgent need to use this funding to identify homeless children and youth, provide wraparound services in light of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, and provide assistance to enable homeless children and youth to attend school and participate fully in school activities, including in-person instruction this spring and upcoming summer learning and enrichment programs.

The remaining funds will be allocated to states as soon as June.

“The pandemic made the inequities in our education system even worse, especially for students experiencing homelessness,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona. “As districts and schools return to in-person learning, we must act with urgency to provide all students, including students experiencing homelessness, equitable access to high-quality learning environments and the resources to help meet their basic needs which schools often provide.”

The Department’s letter to Chief State School Officers provides additional information and recommendations to support states and school districts in putting these resources to work to support students experiencing homelessness, particularly for student groups who have been historically underserved.

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From a release from the U.S. Department of Education.