Senator Clausen Statement on Inadequate Funding for School Safety

ST. PAUL, MN – The Minnesota Department of Education has requested $275 million in federal Coronavirus Relief funds to assist schools in their fall reopening. Legislation was introduced today to provide $25 million in funding; far short of what is necessary to ensure the safe reopening of our schools for students, faculty, and staff. In response, Senator Greg Clausen (DFL-Apple Valley) released the following statement:

“The bill introduced today provided woefully inadequate funding to protect our schools, children, teachers, and school employees. The Minnesota Department of Education has requested $275 million to adequately fund the safe reopening of schools to sufficiently protect students, teachers, and staff. Schools need more than $25 per student to take the necessary precautions. This funding shortfall could lead to insufficient access to badly needed PPE, disinfectant, and other necessary expenses.

It is disappointing that the Senate Majority have refused to hold any hearings on how to safely reopen our schools. This has shut out school districts, administrators, teachers, and parents from a conversation on the safety of their students. In order to keep our students, teachers, and staff safe, we must listen to those being affected. Our students deserve better. Our teachers and workers deserve better. Our schools deserve better.

Additionally, the bill provides funding only to schools that re-open buildings for in-person instruction of students. There are schools in need of funding to provide distance learning or a hybrid of in-person and distance learning options. This is not a fair distribution of education funds.”

Senator Greg Clausen
Greg Clausen lives in Apple Valley and represents District 57 in the southern Twin Cities metropolitan area.

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