91.7 Ann Arbor/Detroit 104.1 Grand Rapids 91.3 Port Huron 89.7 Lansing 91.1 Flint
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Detroit public schools plan for more than $1 billion in federal aid

Creative Commons http://michrad.io/1LXrdJM

Detroit's public school system is investing much of its $1.3 billion in federal COVID-19 relief aid to improve learning for its students and help fix what has been broken for decades.

Nationally, pandemic relief to schools in the U.S. totals $190 billion. High-poverty areas got the most per student.

Detroit received the highest rate among big districts, getting about $25,000 per student.

The Detroit school system is putting much of its relief money toward tutoring, after-school programs and other efforts to shore up student achievement. District leaders hope the money will not only help students catch up on what they missed during the coronavirus pandemic, but also fix some of what has been broken for decades.

Superintendent Nikolai Vitti said now is the first time he feels the district has equitable funding, but "unfortunately, it had to come during a pandemic."

The money needs to be used within the next 18 months. Vitti said the district's needs are long-term.

"We certainly have extremely bright, capable students that are able to do so much more if we're providing them with the consistency of a public education system that they deserve," Vitti said.

The Associated Press is an independent global news organization dedicated to factual reporting.
Katheryne Friske is the weekend morning host and producer for All Things Considered.