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News > Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico: 47% Of Funds for Education Are Not Used

  •  Emergency Support Fund for Elementary and Secondary Schools. Jul. 18, 2023.

    Emergency Support Fund for Elementary and Secondary Schools. Jul. 18, 2023. | Photo: Twitter/@Educacion_Ec

Published 18 July 2023 (6 hours 9 minutes ago)
Opinion

The Federal Department of Education in Puerto Rico highlighted the lack of commitment of the government institutions to cooperate in the efficient use of the funds.

The Government of Puerto Rico must return by September 30 the 37% of the Emergency Support Fund for Elementary and Secondary Schools (ESSER) that was not used due to the pandemic.

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The fact was revealed through a letter sent by the Federal Department of Education:

"The department is concerned about the lack of substantial progress by Puerto Rico and the Puerto Rico Education Department (PRDE) in complying with Section II of the specific conditions," according to the document.

The letter from the Federal Department of Education refers to the lack of commitment of the government institutions to cooperate in the efficient use of these funds. It also emphasized that the measures through which these institutions have tried to correct these deficiencies have not had the expected effect.

A few days before the publication of the letter, the PRDE promised to comply with the requirements of the Federal Department of Education. It expressed its commitment to spend all the funds, although they have not yet spent the funds that expired in September 2022. They even lost the opportunity of the extra deadline date they were given until June 30, consisting of the sum of 23 million dollars, according to the Puerto Rican media.

The tweet reads, "That letter really doesn't come as a surprise to me," governor says of missive from federal Education Department over lack of progress on a series of signaling.

The deadline for disbursement of the funds earmarked for 2023 is September 30. The figure in question is about US$626 million, which had not been used by the end of May.

In the midst of this situation, the Secretary of the Department of Education, Yanira Raices Vega, announced last Thursday the creation of a digital platform that includes information regarding the use of these federal funds for the development of education in the country.

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