Louisiana in line to get $331M for higher education as part of COVID-19 aid

Louisiana is expected to receive an estimated $331.1 million for higher education through the most recent COVID-19 federal aid package, The Center Square reports. However, the exact amount and rules about how the money can be spent have not yet been determined.

The total does not include an estimated $22.2 million for a fund Gov. John Bel Edwards will control, part of which can be spent on colleges and universities.

Altogether, Louisiana’s share of The Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act is anticipated to be about $268.5 million in direct infusions for schools and an additional $62.6 million for institutions that largely serve minorities.

Though details about how the dollars can be used remain uncertain, Kim Hunter Reed, the state’s higher education commissioner, assured the board the money would be used to help accelerate college completion—a goal that comes on the heels of a master plan the board adopted in 2019 that called for more than doubling the number of degrees and credentials awarded annually.

What officials do know: Some of the money must be used on emergency student aid, and it can’t be spent to build athletics facilities. Read the full story.