ALBANY — Sen. Rachel May, D-53, Syracuse, is lauding passage of a 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 passed the Senate on Wednesday.
While school districts across the state are closed for in-person instruction, many districts continue to work daily to deliver meals and homework to their student populations with district staff and bus drivers perform the majority of these deliveries. Under the current funding framework, schools do not anticipate this meal and homework delivery function to be an allowable expense for state reimbursement. The legislation would make these expenses reimbursable.
“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,” he added.