Albany, NY -- Senator Rachel May (D-Onondaga, Madison, Oneida) announces the passage of her bill to allow schools to use existing transportation funds to pay for the additional unexpected costs of delivering food, homework, and other materials to students during COVID-19. The bill (S.8585A) passed the Senate Wednesday night.
While school districts across the state are closed for in-person instruction, many districts continue to work every single day to deliver meals and homework to their student populations. School district staff and bus drivers perform the majority of these deliveries. Under our current system, schools do not anticipate this meal and homework delivery function to be covered under school funding from the state. This bill allows school districts to use state transportation aid to cover the expenses of such deliveries.
“In this unprecedented time, our school districts and their staff have gone above and beyond to continue serving their students and families,” said Senator May. “My bill will take some of the uncertainty and burden off of our schools by allowing them to get reimbursed for these unexpected expenses with transportation aid funding. I want to thank my colleagues in the Senate for voting to advance this legislation and the advocates for working hard to support our schools.”
“Schools districts across New York have performed the Herculean task of continuing to provide essential services for students and families, and we can’t thank them enough for making sure students don’t lose those connections or access to meals during this pandemic,” NYSUT President Andy Pallotta said. “The flexibility this legislation provides is essential for districts to be able to continue providing these services moving forward without having to scale back or shift funds from other important programs. We thank Senator May for recognizing this important need and working with her colleagues to take the right action.”
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