ABC Philadelphia: Philly schools superintendent reveals how district will use $1.2 billion of stimulus funding

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) — A vast majority of the $1.2 billion coming to the Philadelphia School District under President Joe Biden’s stimulus recovery plan will go toward modernizing schools and enhancing educational programs over the next several years.

“Nothing is more important than education for the future and wellbeing of this city and this society,” said US Rep. Dwight Evans.

Evans was joined by local leaders Friday at the Fitler Academic Plus School in Germantown.

They spoke on the importance of receiving the massive amount of money for Philadelphia schools and said it’s long overdue.

“Good things don’t just happen on their own. They require work and they require resources,” said Philadelphia Councilmember Cindy Bass.

One focus will be on getting students caught up as school buildings slowly reopen for hybrid learning after being closed for more than a year.

“We will invest $350 million from the American Rescue Act over the next four years to improve summer learning opportunities,” said Philadelphia Schools Superintendent Dr. William Hite.

Hite also said the district will also commit $325 million toward continuing efforts to modernize aging buildings.

“We owe a debt to them to make sure that when they return to school we can provide them something better than when they left,” said Pennsylvania Sen. Sharif Street.

Hite said that more than $150 million will be used to increase counseling and social work programs with the remaining funds planned for additional educational advancements.

“It’s our time to step up, do better, be better and continue to work together so they can have what they rightfully deserve as children,” said Pennsylvania Rep. Darisha Parker.