(FOX NEWS) – More than $700 million of K-12 funding did not reach the students it was intended for, and in many states, it is being used as a slush fund for other priorities, according to a study conducted by the National Opportunity Project (NOP), which conducts public policy and issue advocacy work on behalf of liberty-based principles.
As of March 2023, three years after the start of the pandemic, $736 million of federal aid has not reached the nonpublic schools and students it was set aside for and at least $157 million that states didn’t allocate to nonpublic schools has ended up back in the hands of governors who reallocated the money to "pet projects," according to the NOP report.
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In 2020, Congress allocated almost $200 billion in government relief to aid in the reopening of K-12 schools amid the COVID-19 pandemic, of which about 97% went to government-run public schools, according to the report. But, after a push from stakeholders detailing the harm from government-mandated closures on private schools, Congress created the Emergency Assistance to Nonpublic Schools (EANS), which allocated an additional $5.5 billion in aid for private, independent and parochial schools with low-income students who were severely impacted by the pandemic.