Members of the Biden administration have repeatedly stressed that money for infrastructure — not vaccination — is the crucial factor in reopening American schools for in-person learning. But according to a new report from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), tying in-person learning to infrastructure and safety spending could leave kids out of classrooms until 2023, as only a fraction of existing coronavirus relief funds for schools is slated to be spent in 2021.
“President Biden’s relief bill currently includes $130 billion for public K-12 schools. The biggest chunk of the spending would go to districts to avoid layoffs and hire more personnel,” National Public Radio reported earlier in February, alluding to the administration’s plans to spend its way into a five-day, in-person school week.
Just Wednesday morning, Vice President Kamala Harris, acknowledging that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) does not believe vaccinating teachers against COVID-19 must be a prerequisite to returning to classrooms, reiterated the administration’s
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