Reopening Schools for the 20-21 Academic Year
Governor Ned Lamont and Education Commissioner Miguel Cardona today announced details of the framework to allow all students – in all school districts statewide – the opportunity to have access to in-school, full-time instruction at the beginning of the 2020-21 academic year, as long as public health data continues to support this model. While Connecticut has determined reopening schools for in-person instruction can be achieved based upon the state’s successful COVID-19 containment efforts, this model will be supported with more intensive mitigation strategies and specific monitoring, containment, and class cancellation plans.

In addition to the framework released today, SDE plans to release a more detailed guidance document next week that will provide more comprehensive information for school districts.

Download Executive Summary of CT's 20-21 School Planning
Download Presentation on CT's 20-21 School Planning

According to an article in the Hartford Courant, " Connecticut school districts, who have just 11 weeks to prepare to return to the classroom, are already anticipating millions of dollars in expenses in order to implement new safety protocols. Districts are anticipating needing to hire more teachers to keep class sizes small, more custodians and more bus runs to minimize the numbers of students on each bus."

Approximately $99 million in federal CARES Act funding will be distributed to local school districts to help mitigate the costs of reopening, according to Commissioner Cardona. In addition, the state is also applying for grants under the Rethink K-12 Education Models program, which assists families in accessing technology and educational services.

The state has indicated that FEMA funding may be available to local and regional school districts to pay for personal protective equipment and modifications to classrooms and school buildings to accommodate social distancing and safe practices.

COST will be following up with the Governor's Office to address funding questions.

COST Associate Member Spotlight
KS Engineers (KSE) hopes that all COST members and their families are safe and well and remain resilient during this unprecedented challenge. While we manage this principal challenge, Mother Nature continues to stress our infrastructure and many of you are also dealing with these challenges head on. KSE’s licensed, insured and certified inspectors stand ready to inspect bridges or culverts that may have been damaged during the winter or by recent spring flooding. Our CT licensed professional engineers can provide designs for emergency repairs to structures that just cannot wait until the pandemic passes by.
If you wish to discuss your challenges with a concerned COST Associate Member, please Email George Jacobs, PE at gjacobs@kseng.com .
COST's Associate Members  - firms and professionals that provide a wide range of products and services to meet the needs of Connecticut’s municipalities – have highlighted some of the resources that they can provide to you and your community during this difficult time. We encourage our members to “shop first” with COST’s Associate Members whenever possible.

If your firm would like to be included in COST's COVID-19 Municipal Resources listing, please contact James.berardino@gmlobbying.com. We will be highlighting the firms in our electronic bulletins.