The White House Office of the Press Secretary
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 28, 2020

PRESIDENT DONALD J. TRUMP IS EXPANDING EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITY FOR AMERICA’S CHILDREN AND FAMILIES IMPACTED BY THE PANDEMIC

“All families should be empowered to make the decision that is right for their own circumstance.”

President Donald J. Trump

EMPOWERING PARENTS AND STUDENTS: President Donald J. Trump is taking action to expand K-12 educational options for disadvantaged children impacted by the pandemic.

Today, President Trump signed an Executive Order offering flexibility to provide certain disadvantaged children with emergency K-12 scholarships to access in-person learning opportunities.

The Order allows States and eligible entities to use available Federal Community Service Block Grants (CSBG) funds to provide life-changing scholarships to families whose children cannot access in-person learning. + CSBG funds totaled nearly $1.7 billion in FY 2020.

Scholarships provided with CSBG funds can help families pay for private school tuition, home schooling, micro schooling, learning-pod expenses, special education services, or tutoring.

FIGHTING FOR OUR CHILDREN’S WELL-BEING: President Trump is protecting America’s children who need an in-person learning option from prolonged school closures.

Despite providing $13 billion in Federal support for K-12 schools this spring to safely resume in-person learning, more than half of all public school students began school remotely this fall.

A lack of in-person learning most harms low-income students and students with disabilities. + Research shows that during school closures this spring, students’ math progress in low-income neighborhoods decreased by nearly 50 percent and those from middle-income neighborhoods fell by almost a third. + According to surveys, children with special needs were twice as likely to receive little or no virtual instruction and to be dissatisfied with the virtual instruction they received.

A recent survey of educators found student absences have doubled during the pandemic.

Analysts project that if in-person classes do not fully resume until January 2021, low-income students will lose over a year of learning. + Projections also show that an average student could lose between $61,000 to $82,000 in lifetime earnings, or the equivalent of a full year of full-time work.

EXPANDING EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITY: President Trump continues to help each child have a fair shot at the American dream through school choice.

President Trump has led a national conversation on expanding school choice and introduced the most transformative education funding proposal ever, Education Freedom Scholarships.

President Trump has twice signed legislation re-authorizing the D.C. Opportunity Scholarship program.

The Trump Administration has invested nearly $1.5 billion in the development of public charter schools, helping this innovative sector grow to 7,500 charter schools serving more than 3 million students.

Because of the President’s historic tax reform, parents across the nation can now withdraw up to $10,000 tax-free per year from 529 education savings plans to cover public, private, or religious K-12 schooling costs.

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