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College CARE funding private schools

Students of West Virginia private nonprofit colleges and for-profit colleges will, similar to public college students, be eligible for federal financial relief due to the coronavirus shutting down schools.

We reported on funding amounts for public colleges last week.

U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos wrote to college presidents last week that each school will get to decide how to distribute these funds to their students, “which may include distributing the funds to all students or only to students who demonstrate significant need.”

The total amounts for these other schools aren’t generally as large as for the public colleges. But, at a minimum, the University of Charleston will have to give out about $611,000 to its students, West Virginia Wesleyan College will have to give out $621,000 and Alderson Broaddus University will have to give out $563,000.

Also, while vocational centers like Kanawha County’s Carver Career and Technical Education Center are run by primarily prekindergarten-12th grade school systems and serve pre-college students, they also serve adults. Several of those will also have money they must give to students — Carver will have to distribute at least $154,000.

Briana Warner, spokeswoman for the Kanawha school system, wrote in an email Tuesday that the money for these schools will be distributed “to adult program students based on financial need as determined by estimated family contributions for financial aid eligibility. The full distribution plans are being developed, but first we must complete the initial paperwork.”

“No money has been released to the schools to distribute yet,” she wrote. “Kanawha County Schools adult program students will be notified by their school when funds are available.”

Each college and vocational school will receive about twice the previously mentioned amounts, but the half that must be given to students is supposed to arrive earlier. Colleges could also decide to give the other half to students, according to the U.S. Department of Education.

The federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act is providing this money. Jessica Tice, spokeswoman for the state higher education oversight agencies, said schools that were already fully online before the coronavirus didn’t get any funding.

Schools must give roughly half of the money they’re getting from the CARES Act directly to students for, as DeVos put it, covering “expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to coronavirus.”

These expenses could include food, housing, course materials, technology, health care and child care, DeVos wrote.

Reach Ryan Quinn at

ryan.quinn@wvgazettemail.com, facebook.com/ryanedwinquinn, 304-348-1254 or follow

@RyanEQuinn on Twitter.