Disparities in CARES Act Funding for West Virginia Schools

Submitted by mellissa on Wed, 01/06/2021 - 10:19
Over 5,400 private schools across the country received loans from the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), amounting to an estimated $4.5 billion—approximately $833,000 per school. West Virginia follows this trend with 18 private schools receiving an estimated $5.8 million in PPP loans, or $322,000 per school.
CARES Act funding for public education, however, was not as generous. West Virginia was allocated $78 million in grants for its 768 Title I public schools through the Elementary and Secondary Schools Emergency Relief Fund (ESSER). Although the ESSER program is primarily for public schools, private schools with Title I-eligible students are also entitled to a portion of these funds. ESSER disclosures indicate that participating private schools received more than $3.3 million in ESSER grants, reducing the funding for public schools to $75 million, or $97,000 per school, only a third of what the average private school received through the PPP loan program.
At the student level, PPP loans to private schools amount to approximately $1,137 per pupil. Meanwhile, only $603 was allocated for each Title I public school student, or $578 after the distribution of equitable shares to private schools.
Visit our CARES education page for more information about education funding in the CARES Act.