Serving Gogebic, Iron and Ontonagon Counties

GOISD to provide funds for pandemic prevention efforts


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Bergland — The six members of the Gogebic-Ontonagon Intermediate School District will be receiving funds for supplies to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 this fall after the GOISD board voted Wednesday to provide $172,000 in financial assistance.

“The members of the GOISD Board of Education recognize that each of our local districts will be facing additional costs related to the requirements of reopening under the Michigan Return to School Roadmap. As a result, the GOISD Board of Education met for a special meeting … to approve a plan to provide $172,000 in direct financial assistance to local school districts to offset costs associated with the COVID-19 pandemic,” a GOISD spokesperson said in the announcement. “GOISD Board members are encouraging local districts to use the funds to purchase cleaning supplies, technology to support in-person and distance learning, additional custodial staff, or any other needed materials, staff, or supplies to ensure that students continue to receive high quality educational opportunities.”

Although he hasn’t had a chance to decide what specifically the money will go towards, Wakefield-Marenisco Superintendent Jason Gustafson said he appreciates the funding.

“There’s just so many extra cleaning and personal protection things that we have to pay for coming up to prepare our schools to be ready for our students and our staff, it’s really going to help us out with that,” Gustafson said. “It’s things we had bought anyway because we need them, but it’s one of those things where you buy them and you’re thinking afterwards, ‘Where’s that money going to come from?’ This helps to answer that question.”

Along with the funds, the GOISD board committed $65,000 to support the member districts’ efforts to develop makerspaces and fabrication labs next year.

Each district will have access to funds to purchase equipment and utilize consultants as they implement the program in their districts, the spokesperson said.