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NEA: Congress should grant Census Bureau an 120-day extension due to the COVID-19 pandemic

WASHINGTON - April 28, 2020 -

National Education Association President Lily Eskelsen García released the following statement in response to the U.S. Census Bureau’s request to Congress to push back the statutory deadlines for reporting census data.

“The census makes visible the strength of our communities, which includes every student, parent, and family in our country. An accurate census is key to getting our public schools and communities the resources they need to serve all students for the next decade—regardless of where they live, what language they speak at home, or whether they are black, brown, or white. And it will be used to reapportion the 435 seats in the U.S. House of Representatives, as well as to redraw legislative and school board districts around the country. The COVID-19 pandemic has made it unsafe right now to have census takers go door-to-door, a key component to ensuring that everyone, especially people in the hardest to count communities, are included in the 2020 census. That is why Congress should pass legislation granting the U.S. Census Bureau an 120-day extension to ensure every person is counted, while also providing the 2020 census with the funding necessary to safely complete an accurate and equitable count. With so much at stake, it would be wrong to let the current health crisis make students and communities suffer for a decade because the count was incorrect.”


The National Education Association is the nation's largest professional employee organization, representing more than 3 million elementary and secondary teachers, higher education faculty, education support professionals, school administrators, retired educators and students preparing to become teachers. Learn more at



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