An infrastructure stimulus plan for the COVID-19 recession

How can Congress design an infrastructure stimulus that responds to today’s recession while still making forward-looking investments? This brief uses historical data and the earliest indicators from the COVID-19 downturn to make the case for a people-first approach to federal infrastructure stimulus. We specifically recommend that Congress:

For schools to reopen, Congress must include broadband funding in the stimulus bill

Every K-12 school must have a 21st-century remote access plan to complement the CDC guidance and  Congress must direct the necessary funding for bringing broadband access to all public schools in the next coronavirus stimulus bill.

In Michigan, closing the digital divide can unite the ‘red’ and the ‘blue’

Among the many truths COVID-19 has exposed about Michigan’s economy and society is the state’s stark digital divide, which is limiting educational opportunity in both highly segregated urban “blue” communities and rural “red” areas as well.

Unequally disconnected: Access to online learning in the US

A new weekly Household Pulse Survey from the US Census Bureau offers a rich opportunity to quantify the impact of COVID-19 on children’s education during this time. It includes questions about the availability of digital devices and the internet in homes across the US, which allow us to explore the concern that access to distance learning is out of the reach of many of the most vulnerable students. Based on four weeks of data, our findings are bleak: