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COE Applauds the Senate for Introducing a COVID-19 Proposal with $450 Million for TRIO

June 30, 2020

Today Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) and colleagues introduced the Coronavirus Child Care and Education Relief Act (CCCERA), a proposed COVID-19 emergency education funding bill to provide $450 million in emergency support for federal TRIO programs to serve low-income/first-generation students, unemployed adults, and students with disabilities.

The bill would provide $250 million for TRIO capacity increases to help serve additional students facing educational disruption, unemployment, and poverty in the COVID-19 crisis. The bill would also provide $200 million for technological connectivity through the TRIO programs to help low-income students continue coursework, apply to college and financial aid, and continue advising services online.

“Students and families are facing significant disruption as COVID-19 closes schools, and unemployment and poverty skyrocket,” said Maureen Hoyler, President of the Council for Opportunity in Education. “Without action, we could see a lost generation of college-bound students. Thank you, Senator Murray and colleagues, for hearing the TRIO community’s strong cry for help, and proposing this emergency relief to help vulnerable students enter and complete college to improve their economic situation.”

Thanks to the advocacy of the TRIO community nationwide, last month 40 bipartisan senators Document is available for download (.pdf) asked Senate leaders to include funding for TRIO in the next COVID-19 relief bill. This followed similar requests from 108 bipartisan House members Document is available for download (.pdf) (covered in Politico) and the Congressional Black, Hispanic, and Asian Pacific American Caucuses.

The Council for Opportunity in Education’s detailed request for emergency COVID-19 funding for TRIO can be found here Document is available for download (.pdf).

To read more about Senator Murray’s bill, view the press release, fact sheet Document is available for download (.pdf), and bill text Document is available for download (.pdf). In addition to TRIO funding, the bill would also provide:

  • $345 billion to the Education Stabilization Fund, similar to the CARES Act signed into law in March 2020. This additional funding would include:

    • More than $132 billion for students and institutions of higher education, including emergency financial grant aid for immediate student needs, and funding for colleges to address COVID-19 costs. The formula to colleges would count part-time and full-time students equally, thus providing relatively more to community colleges than the CARES Act. The bill would allow student grant aid for DACA recipients and others who have not completed a FAFSA. Funding would also include grants to Historically Black Colleges and Universities and Minority-Serving Institutions.
    • $175 billion for K-12 education, via grants to state and local education agencies using the Title I-A formula for low-income students. The funding would be used for reopening safely, using distance education if needed, meeting students’ social and emotional needs, and recovering learning loss.
    • Over $33 billion for governors to use flexibly on early childhood through higher education, based on greatest need due to COVID-19.
  • $4 billion for broadband internet connectivity for schools and libraries through the E-Rate program (in addition to TRIO connectivity funding).

  • $50 billion for child care and $500 million for child abuse prevention and treatment.

  • Nearly $12 billion for the Individuals with Disabilities in Education Act.

  • Career and Technical Education formula grants and new Community College career training grants.

  • Formula funding for Migrant, Homeless, Neglected and Delinquent, and English Learner students.