Colorado has received $121 million from the $2.2 trillion CARES Act to distribute to school districts dealing with the fallout from the coronavirus pandemic.
“As Colorado schools prepare for an unpredictable future due to the coronavirus, this money will support students and staff in the coming months,” said education Commissioner Katy Anthes. “While we all are working hard to open schools this fall as safely as possible, we don’t really know what the next school year looks like at this point.”
Under the federal legislation, $13 billion total was set aside for schools. Colorado will distribute 90% of the money, or about $109 million, directly to districts based on the percentage of low-income students. Denver Public Schools will receive the largest share at $28.4 million, which amounts to 2% of the district’s annual revenue. Allocations over $5 million will also go to Aurora Public Schools with $10.4 million, Jefferson County R-1 with $8.1 million, Colorado Springs 11 with $7.3 million and Pueblo City 60 with $5.8 million.
The state will decide how to spend the remaining 10%.
Allowable uses of school districts’ money include delivering services to at-risk youth or students of color, purchasing cleaning supplies, coordinating meals or technology during long-term school closures and providing mental health services.