We asked. Connecticut families answered. Add your voice to the hundreds who shared input about how districts should prioritize federal education funding. Take the survey here. Read what others have to say below.

A link to the full survey report can be found here: _2021 Federal Education Relief Fund Survey Report

“Decisions should be based on the needs of each district and should be apportioned to the financial needs of the community. Not all monies should be split, as some districts can support the financial gap.”

“Replicate educational programs that have proven to be successful. Professional development for educators without accountability is misuse of funds.”
–Bridgeport and 6to6 Inter-district in Trumbull

“Students need people to help with remediation, we could use more paras/interventionists/teachers to help support student learning.”

“Special education students need more support! Less fighting with schools to get testing and supports for students who are clearly struggling! More TRAINED Specialists to help classroom teachers.”

“PPE for educators. We are supplying our own masks filters. Schools need better ventilation as well. Extra subs are needed when teachers quarantine. Also vaccinate teachers NOW!”

“These funds should not be used to supplant, only to supplement, a school budget.”

“Please let us parents still have a choice of distant learning.”
–Derby Public Schools

“Put in to place supports for children emotionally, socially instead of punishing kids. most things students do are because of their potential home lives and lack of support and punishing them instead of nourishing them is detrimental.”
East Hartford

“Online learning is not good for all students and those who have fallen behind, are having difficulties, or are going through more mental health issues due to the current educational setups should be given help, assistance, guidance, and reassurance that they have not been forgotten and will succeed.”

“Hopefully this money will also help private schools. We pay for our daughter to attend a Catholic high school. They have done a phenomenal job educating and keeping my child engaged through this entire pandemic. She is held accountable for her work and teachers and administrators are wonderful. They deserve help also. My child matters as much as public school student. And we should benefit from state or federal funds as well. I pay state and local taxes and should be entitled to school funding due to pandemic.”
–Stratford but attends school in Fairfield

“These chrome books and wifi is trash the kids need better.”

“People that have enrolled into educational programs and lost their privileges due to defaults that stem from an inability to become employed or their tutoring needs were not accommodated which contributed to failures, dropouts and other issues (lack of necessary supports). There should be a way to support reengagement and second chances, especially considering job losses re: COVID. Furthermore, online school is not offering enough academic work and the children of Hartford need engagement that will enhance their social skills and employment readiness (behaviors, insights, public speaking, people skills). Hopefully this initiative is not just for K-12.”

“Particularly sensitive attention needs to be focused upon those who have been even more marginalized by the COVID-19 Crisis, namely students of immigrants and undocumented, who are otherwise ineligible for all other support.”

“Be good to teachers!”

“Focus on in person instruction (at least meeting 900 hours of instruction). Focus on closing the achievement gap, especially on the basics. Support students in all aspects of academic success.”
–Litchfield Co.

“Students need to be back in school, and teachers need to get back to what they trained, achieved advanced degrees for and likely spent lot so of money on. Facilitating learning in the classroom, face to face with students. I am not opposed to flipped learning, remote learning, but it HAS to be balanced with genuine opportunities to learn in person. My kids have been in school only 8 hours a week all year. The learning is not truly flipped, as teachers don’t have the training to do this by and large. BACK TO SCHOOL (SAFELY) NOW!!!!”

“Special education – particularly for students with autism. Bcba’s, OT, speech, social skills.”

“The money should go directly to families for learning supplies such as educational games, workbooks, educational posters and charts in their area for reference, manipulatives, etc. But seeing first hand how little importance some parents regard their children’s education, I can understand the hesitation. Next best thing would be a voucher to Lakeshore learning store. Another solution is to have the individual teachers select those items for their class and set up a pick up time for families.”

“Career training.” –Milford

“I think in Naugatuck, we most need money to ready the middle school and high school to return to in-person school. They go only 2 days a week and every other Friday. And Fridays are half day. It’s awful for them. The district is concentrating on keeping elementary school students in-person and completely forgetting about the older students.”

“Just because each district and the state ‘set’ standards, that is NOT and should NEVER be the quota nor should these standards be what every child should met and the time administrators determined. No child can be measured for learning now (state tests don’t measure how much you can learn, but what you have learned and how good you are at taking tests); therefore, no child can be measured for learning loss. Children need to learn resiliency, adapting and overcoming obstacles, and an understanding that you need the rain to see the rainbows/this too shall pass/nothing lasts forever/every set back is a learning opportunity/you learn from making mistakes.”

“Fully reopen all the schools without “safety” measures in place. Enough is enough.”
–New Hartford

“Save (help) the parents in order to save (help) the children.”
–New Haven

“Students need the emotional support counselors plus tutors.”
–New Haven

“To develop more responsive metrics for school connectedness.”
–New Haven

“We opened in feb 9 and 12 schools have cases positives. I dont understand why continue open and want open until grade 8 in march 4. Thats numbers will up. And the have the options to leave the kids in home ok but the teachers and staff no have options to stay safe in home.”
–New Haven

“Pandemic Ebt should have been completed already for 2021 school year people are struggling to put food on the table and CT is taking their time getting this done.”
–New Haven

“Yes they should also consider money for all schools in sports like baseball, basketball and others.”
–New Haven

“The state should have come up with a real plan rather than leaving it up to districts. For towns that are open and have been all year, remote learning option should be taken off the table or allowed only if there’s a documented weakened immune system in the house. Tracing shows little to no spread due to schools and the negative impact remote has on students, teachers and classroom community is growing.”
–New Milford

“The Governor’s suggestion that ESSER II funds supplant the scheduled increase of ECS is unconscionable. His own SDE says the funds must be used to address covid and learning loss, especially among most vulnerable populations.”

“I want schools to reopen with full safety protocols in place, and I want staff to do everything possible to assist in recovery, including missed opportunities.”

“Special education student more time in school.”

“I think we need to help our students to once again feel like part of a community.”

“Summer Programs for the arts. This is one area that has been highly neglected during the pandemic.”
–Region 15

“There should be school choice and the money for the children that go to private schools should be given to those parents since they are not using that my money on that child.”
–Sacred Heart Academy

“Teacher needs to be more supportive to the parents who are the ones teaching their children while also working at home as well.”

“I suggest that state and local policymakers make sure that these funds are utilized properly. I don’t trust our mayor or his hand picked BOA to use these funds properly. The mayor will use it on the city side and deprive our children if they are not forced to use them properly and for education.”

“Get teachers vaccinated NOW. They should be the priority.”
–Simsbury Public Schools

“No more masks for our children! They have been psychologically traumatized.”
–South Windsor Public Schools

“Allow children to go private schools as an option.”
–South Windsor

“Social emotional needs of staff AND students need to be taken care of first. School counseling and social workers have been overworked and underfunded for years – money should go there first.”
–Stafford Public Schools

“Stamford needs a reopening plan – or several scenarios A, B, C. I listened to this week’s CORE meeting and even though everyone was excited that Gov. Lamont put teachers as a priority for vaccinations, I was shocked at how little progress the committee has made over the course of months. There were no action steps, no substantial decisions that would actually lead to in-person learning. Rather people were getting lost in the semantics of “re-opening” and the better word to use. Stop. We get you want everyone’s voice at the table, but you’re hearing so many community voices asking for help, allowing at least elementary students in person full time. To me, the leadership had no answers. The committee members all had varying thoughts – which would have been expected at a meeting months ago. Not mid February 2021.”

“Learning loss should be a priority!”

“Academic and emotional support is priority for students who are at a loss due to distance learning.”

“Yes-2 years ago Stamford converted the old Pitney bowes building into a school while west over elementary was shut down for mold.. our BoE states we cannot go back to 5 day in person learning due to space, why can’t we use that converted space at Pitney Bowes as well as convert some empty offices into schools?”

“More advanced students are not being challenged in Stamford elementary schools. Funds need to go to enrichment programs and honors programs to remain on par with neighbor schools.”

“It should go directly to the families who have been teaching their kids in their home, paying for internet and doing everything anyways.”

“Open schools 5 days now!”

“Term limits of elected board of education members.”
–They graduate

“How can we make sure our special education students are not being just passed along through the grades? How can we be sure they are actually meeting their IEP goals.”

“Money should go to students NOT teachers.”

“My children have suffered and are currently suffering from the educational inequalities. Bridgeport schools have been failing and underfunded for over 23 years. I know this because that is when I purchased my home on the North End of Bridgeport because that was where the better schools and neighborhoods were. With the exception of 2 schools, all of the other schools in my district, neighborhood and city were failing and that has been the case for at least 23 years. I have to send my children outside of the school district, to predominantly white school districts. They receive a great education, but we also make great sacrifices. My children have to wake up much earlier than their peers to be bussed out of the district. I often skip out on parent activities because I don’t feel safe driving in predominantly white, upscale neighborhoods at night. I experience racism, that everyday racism that has nothing to do with being racist but more about racism being a common societal behavior.I do not get to create the parent/teacher/school experience that I deserve. In 12 years my children have only had TWO Black History projects. They have never had a Black History anything at their schools, imagine how that makes a child feel.”

“Focus on moving forward and not what was “lost” let the past be gone and help kids and families feel good about school, community and our futures.”

“Please cancel standardized tests, there are so many mitigating factors that will skew data that they’re a waste of time this year. Get the teachers vaccinated and then let them choose which professional development makes sense for them.”

“Distribute to taxpayers.”

“Virtual teacher need mental help they sometimes have a lot stress and not have patience with children’s.”

“Proper ventilation for older buildings that have poor systems.”

“School all year long with built in week long break.”

“Stop using education funds to hire more administrators. Go into schools and see what they look like. Why should students have to sit in antiquated desks in lime green cinderblock rooms from the 60’s and 70’s while administrators have new furniture and offices. The learning environment is just as important as the content.”

“Help with food for kids who are still at home doing online and not receiving school lunch.”

“Funds should be used for our students and not the administration.”
–Watertown CT

“Making sure the busses are as safe as the classrooms – any help for our college students???”
–West Haven

“Black, Indigenous, and Asian American history should be mandatory teachings in all schools, not electives; students need to learn about all Americans. Also, SEL should include more mental health awareness and coping skills, and all teachers and administrators should have mandated mental health first aid training.”

“600 Million is a LOT OF MONEY. Do NOT pocket this money!!! OUR KIDS NEED THIS MONEY AS MOST ARE SUFFERING FROM NORMALCY THANKS TO THIS PANDEMIC!! Please do what’s right to help our kids with their educational needs met. Thank you.”
–Windham Public School

Link to survey.


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