Florida Isn't Getting Its 'Stimulus Check' from the Government

Florida Isn't Getting Its 'Stimulus Check' from the Government

There's funding on the line that won't arrive until Florida's plan is approved. 


According to the news service of Florida , Florida is one of twenty-one states that missed a recent deadline to submit plans to the Department of Education (DOE) laying out how it plans to distribute federally passed stimulus plans.

On June 14, the Department posted the state plans that were submitted from twenty-nine states plus the District of Columbia. The plans posted by the Department laid out how the money will be spent from the American Rescue Plan Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ARP ESSER), which made $122 billion available, DOE said, to “support the nation’s schools in safely reopening and sustaining safe in-person operations while meeting the social, emotional, mental health and academic needs of students impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.”


The announcement also stated that fifty-nine percent of the country’s K-8 schools were offering in-person instruction as of April, up from forty-six percent in January.

Two-thirds of the allocation from the ARP ESSER funds were sent to the states in April, with the rest arriving once the Department approves each state’s plan.

The states that submitted the plans in time included Arkansas, Connecticut, the District of Columbia, Georgia, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Montana, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Washington, West Virginia, and Wyoming. The plans include everything from setting up the safe return of in-person schooling in places where it isn’t yet returned, to coronavirus mitigation efforts, to summer programs.

What of the states that didn’t submit the plan by the deadline? The Department of Education announced said that the DOE is “working closely with remaining states that did not submit by the deadline, the vast majority of which were due to state board of education or legislative review requirements.”

DOE said that Florida was late with the approval “due to (the) legislative session and required State Board review.” Florida’s own education department did not respond to a request for comment from the News Service of Florida.

“We’re thrilled to see that states are directing the unprecedented resources from the American Rescue Plan toward addressing student needs and quickly and safely reopening our schools, so we can give every student the opportunity to learn full-time, in-person,” U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona said in the announcement.

“These state plans make clear that the American Rescue Plan is providing much-needed support to states and districts as they work to not only bring students back to in-person learning, but also to address inequities made worse by the pandemic and make sure every student has the social, emotional, and mental health support they need to create a strong foundation for academic success.”

Stephen Silver, a technology writer for The National Interest, is a journalist, essayist, and film critic, who is also a contributor to The Philadelphia Inquirer, Philly Voice, Philadelphia Weekly, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, Living Life Fearless, Backstage magazine, Broad Street Review and Splice Today. The co-founder of the Philadelphia Film Critics Circle, Stephen lives in suburban Philadelphia with his wife and two sons. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenSilver.

Image: Wikimedia Commons, Gage Skidmore