US Training Secretary Cardona to go to SC HBCU subsequent week

US Training Secretary Miguel Cardona is making his first go to to South Carolina, stopping at a traditionally Black college, the place he’ll hear instantly from college students about how the pandemic disrupted their lives and their studying simply days earlier than a brand new college yr is about to start.

The Aug. 15 journeys will take Cardona to Orangeburg, the place he’ll go to SC State College alongside US Home Majority Whip Jim Clyburn, an alumnus of the varsity and the very best rating Black member of Congress.

The journey was first introduced by SC State College, and later confirmed by Clyburn’s workplace. Along with a roundtable dialogue with college students and a tour of the campus, Cardona’s go to may even embrace a gathering with leaders of South Carolina’s traditionally Black schools and universities.

The journey is supposed to point out how funding from President Joe Biden’s American Rescue Plan is continuous to assist HBCUs like SC State get well from the a number of results of the pandemic.

The coronavirus pandemic had a devastating affect on HBCUs and different minority-serving establishments across the nation. Not solely do HBCUs function with fewer sources than most different establishments of upper training, the African American inhabitants they serve is at excessive threat of contracting COVID-19.

Congress responded by tossing these faculties a virtually $5 billion lifeline underneath the American Rescue Plan, the place South Carolina’s eight HBCUs have been awarded practically $112 million in funding. Final month, SC State and Clinton Faculty have been awarded an extra $5 million.

In keeping with the Division, the ultimate spherical of grant funding was awarded to private and non-private nonprofit schools and universities “which have the best unmet wants, together with neighborhood schools and rural establishments that serve a excessive share of numerous scholar populations and low-income college students, and those who have skilled enrollment declines for the reason that begin of the pandemic, amongst different classes.”

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In an announcement on the time, Cardona stated, “The establishments that serve our highest-need college students weren’t solely hit exhausting by the pandemic, however in lots of circumstances have additionally struggled with persistent underinvestment and funding inequities.”

The vast majority of establishments that obtained these federal {dollars} are additionally required to distribute roughly half of all grant funds on to college students with the best want, offering extra help for housing, tuition help, meals insecurity, and different fundamental wants.

“After we put money into stronger helps for our college students, we assist take away obstacles to their success in order that they’ll keep on observe with their research, full their levels, and in the end, construct rewarding careers,” Cardona stated.

Monday’s cease shall be Cardona’s first official journey to the Palmetto State since his Senate affirmation in March 2021.

In August 2021, Cardona wrote a letter to South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster and State Faculty Superintendent Molly Spearman, saying that the state proviso to ban college masks mandates was placing college students’ return to the classroom in danger and will violate federal legislation. The US Division of Training later opened a civil rights investigation in South Carolina and in 4 different states over the problem of masks prohibitions in public faculties.

Feds open civil rights investigation in SC over law prohibiting mask mandate in schools

After a collection of court docket challenges, the 4th US Circuit Courtroom of Appeals denied McMaster’s request to overturn a earlier court docket order blocking state officers and sure college districts from implementing the Normal Meeting’s college masks ban.

A former public college instructor, Cardona went on to change into Connecticut’s training chief earlier than Biden appointed him to guide the US Division of Training. Each of South Carolina’s Republican US Senators voted towards Cardona’s affirmation.

Attain Caitlin Byrd at 843-998-5404 and observe her on Twitter @MaryCaitlinByrd.