Federal Agencies and Congress Address Impact of COVID-19 on Education and Research
Federal Agencies and Congress Address Impact of COVID-19 on Education and Research
 
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March 2020

During March, priorities on Capitol Hill dramatically shifted to address the spread of COVID-19 and the economic impact of practicing social distancing to stem the spread of the virus. On March 27, President Donald Trump signed into law a third bill containing an economic stimulus package of $2 trillion to provide assistance to those impacted by COVID-19.

Although many of the provisions are not tied directly to education research, the bill includes $76 million for the National Science Foundation (NSF) for RAPID research grants and $945.5 million for the National Institutes of Health for research related to COVID-19.  Provisions for the Department of Education include giving the secretary of education the authority to grant waivers to states on assessments and accountability under the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), given the disruption to the educational system.

Federal agencies are providing guidance and flexibility for researchers during the coronavirus crisis.

NSF Director France Córdova issued an update on the agency’s efforts to provide flexibility to NSF grantees, grant applicants, and reviewers. NSF has provided guidance on a page dedicated to COVID-19 with information on deadlines for grant applications; FAQs for grant proposers and awardees, and peer review panels; and NSF implementation of guidelines from the White House Office of Management and Budget focusing on administrative relief. The page also includes information on grant opportunities through the RAPID research program for studying COVID-19.

The National Institutes of Health has also provided guidance on proposal and award management, funding opportunities addressing COVID-19, and an FAQ on flexibilities for grantees and potential applicants.

 
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