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South Carolina Department of Education Announces $39 Million in Emergency Assistance to Non-Public Schools

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Press Release

State Superintendent of Education Molly Spearman today announced the funding of $38,702,511 in COVID-19 reimbursements and future expenditures to 111 non-public schools from the Emergency Assistance to Non-Public Schools (EANS) program created by the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations (CRRSA) Act.

“Every South Carolina student and family has been impacted by the coronavirus pandemic,” said State Superintendent of Education Molly Spearman. “These funds were appropriated by Congress specifically to address the needs of our private and parochial schools who have faced similar challenges to our public education system. The South Carolina Department of Education was pleased to work with our non-public partners from around the state to ensure their needs were met so that they can provide a safe environment for students, educators, and families.”

The CRRSA Act provided $2.75 billion for the nationwide EANS program, which is part of the Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Fund. The CRRSA Act requires the U.S. Department of Education to allocate funds reserved for EANS based on each state’s relative number of children aged 5 through 17 at or below 185 percent of poverty who are enrolled in non-public schools in the state. Under these guidelines, South Carolina was awarded $39,981,327 in EANS funding after Governor Henry McMaster submitted an application, which was approved by the U.S. Department of Education. As the state educational agency, the South Carolina Department of Education (SCDE) is responsible for administering the SCEANS program to eligible non-public schools to address the impact that COVID-19 has and continues to have on non-public school students and teachers in the state. Non-public schools submitted an application for review and approval by the SCDE for allowable activities for reimbursement or for future services. As required by the EANS program, priority was given to non-public schools that enroll low-income students and are most impacted by COVID-19. The full SCDE’s EANS approval methodology can be found here.

“We’ve been immensely impressed by the Department and its devoted team for delivering these emergency funds to our Catholic and non-public schools,” said Michael Acquilano, Director of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Charleston. “The children of South Carolina suffered through a difficult and trying pandemic that affected everyone. Our non-public schools were integral to our continued recovery as a state and worked to meet the needs of their students to the best of their ability. We hope to continue this working relationship with the Department as we all toil in the service of our beloved students.”

“We appreciate the attention and devoted work of the Department to facilitate the delivery of the EANS emergency funds to the non-public schools of our state,” said Edward Earwood of South Carolina Association of Christian Schools. “The non-public schools have continued serving students and parents during a fifteen-month period of increased challenge and difficulty that affected all South Carolinians.  We have appreciated the good working relationship with the Department to serve students—the future of our state.”

In order to be eligible, the non-public school requesting services or assistance must:

  • be a non-profit school

  • be accredited, licensed, or otherwise approved to operate in accordance with State law

  • have existed and operated prior to March 13, 2020

  • not and will not apply for and receive a loan under the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) (15 U.S.C. 636(a)(37)) that is made on or after December 27, 2020.

“SCISA remains grateful for the efforts put forth by Congress, Governor McMaster, and Molly Spearman to ensure that all students and families of South Carolina receive this funding to promote academic growth,” said South Carolina Independent School Association Executive Director Dr. Spencer Jordan.  “Their willingness to support students in need, regardless of where they attend school, has been a great benefit to all South Carolinians.”

Allowable activities under EANS relate to safely reopening schools, continuing instruction, addressing learning loss, supporting educational technology and reimbursing for certain coronavirus-related costs. The full list of allowable uses can be found here.

Available amounts for services to non-public schools range from $1,058 to $1.7 million. A listing of schools who applied for funding and how much they were awarded can be found here. 

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