Rep. Sherrill Attends Event with First Lady Dr. Jill Biden at Burlington Elementary School

March 15, 2021
Press Release

Burlington, NJ — Representative Mikie Sherrill (NJ-11) joined First Lady Dr. Jill Biden, Governor Phil Murphy, Senators Bob Menendez and Cory Booker, and Representatives Frank Pallone (NJ-06) and Andy Kim (NJ-03), at a visit to Samuel Smith Elementary School in Burlington. The event was part of the White House’s “Help Is Here” tour, highlighting the recently passed American Rescue Plan’s impact on American families across the nation and the New Jersey delegation’s crucial role in helping get it passed.

In Burlington, the event highlighted the need to get kids back to in-person learning and how the funding included in the American Rescue Plan for K-12 schools aims to help communities reopen their schools safely. The event included a tour of the school, which outlined the additional COVID mitigation strategies employed to ensure the safety of students and teachers and a classroom greeting with students.

Rep. Sherrill has called attention to the importance of getting students back in school. In December, she led members of the New Jersey delegation on a bipartisan letter to Governor Murphy encouraging him to prioritize teachers and school employees in the allocation of COVID-19 vaccines. She will introduce a resolution in the House of Representatives this week highlighting the detrimental effect school closures have had on students, how the pandemic has exacerbated existing achievement gaps, and the need to utilize American Rescue Plan funding to safely reopen schools for in-person learning in accordance to CDC guidelines and prioritizing vaccinations for teachers.

“As a parent of four New Jersey students, I’ve dealt first-hand with the overwhelming impact this pandemic has had on students and their families for over a year,” said Rep. Sherrill. “Our children have had their lives and education uprooted during this pandemic. From worsening mental health issues to growing achievement gaps and the exacerbation of existing disparities, school closures are a crisis for our kids. We have to prioritize getting them back in the classroom — and we have to do it in a way that prioritizes the safety of students and teachers alike. The funding we fought for in the American Rescue Plan ensures we can.”

Additionally, the American Rescue Plan also includes two Sherrill-led provisions to keep healthcare affordable for working families by pausing the IRS clawback of Advanced Premium Tax Credits (APTC) and to provide direct aid to New Jersey’s counties and municipalities. Rep. Sherrill introduced the bipartisan SMART Act in 2020 to provide state and local funding and pushed leadership to keep this in the final package. Under the American Rescue Plan, counties and municipalities in the 11th District will receive an estimated $475 million in direct support, double the amount provided under the CARES Act.