The Miami-Dade county school board approved an item that would give teachers the opportunity to purchase hygiene and sanitation supplies for their individual classrooms.
The item, proposed by school board member Mari Tere Rojas, requested a waiver from the Department of Education to provide flexibility when it comes to the Florida Teachers Classroom Supply Assistance Program. It also seeks to allocate up to $175 from CARES ACT funds for PreK-12 grade public school teachers, regardless of if they are teaching online or face-to-face. Teachers will be able to purchase things such as plexiglass shields and portable air purifiers.
“The board has listened to teachers, parents, students, and members of this community throughout the pandemic. From the moment schools were closed back in March, the challenges have and continue to be immense," said Rojas. "The school house model has reopened, and while a lot of work has been done to ensure that schools and classrooms are as safe as possible, I know how anxious our teachers feel; I have seen how dedicated and committed they are to ensure that students learn in a safe environment."
The school board also unanimously approved reviews of all COVID-19 related procurement purchases from March 1 to Oct. 20. These reviews will ensure that there was compliance with all required state and local policies and administrative procedures. The school board will be discuss this on the December 2 meeting.
“Ensuring compliance with all district policies, procedures, and processes is a priority of this Board and this unanimous vote reflects the Board’s unwavering commitment to transparency, accountability, and financial integrity,” said Dr. Steve Gallon III, who proposed the plan. “We have an obligation to ensure, protect, and maintain the public’s trust, especially when it comes to the expenditure of public funds.”