American Rescue Plan Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER)
What is ESSER Funding?
Along with the illnesses and tragic losses brought on by COVID-19 over the past year and a half, the pandemic also presented significant financial challenges to school districts around the country, including ours. The Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund, also known as the ESSER Fund, was created by the federal government to make up for some of the losses and to help us meet some of the new demands created by COVID-19.
The federal government sends the money to the states, and the states distribute it in three major installments -- ESSER I, ESSER II and ESSER III -- with specific rules on how it can and cannot be spent. We spent ESSER I funding on Chromebooks, software for classroom and distance learning, personal protective equipment, additional cleaning services, temperature scanners for schools, extra nurses, and more. We are spending ESSER II funding on summer programs and preparations for the beginning of the current school year, software to keep students connected, additional instructional support, additional VPK classrooms, custodial supplies, cleaning services and more. We have convened a committee of stakeholders, including parents, students and district employees, to determine how to spend ESSER III funding.
A committee of stakeholders including district leaders, staff, parents, and student representatives met on Nov. 5, 2021, to learn more about ARP ESSER and brainstorm ideas for how best to spend the money. View the presentation in two parts here. Download a copy of the presentation at THIS LINK.
Take Our Surveys
UPDATE: Thank you to everyone who participated in our surveys. The deadline has passed and our surveys are now closed.
Our ESSER III stakeholders committee members are sharing ideas about how they think the funding should be spent. We want to hear you, too! Take the three surveys below and tell us your priorities for each category -- Facility Improvements, Learning Losses and Other Expenditures. Deadline: 6 p.m., Sunday, Nov. 14.
ESSER III Proposed Spending Plan
The project list created at the stakeholder meeting, the priorities from the public survey, and the cost of each project as identified by staff all form the basis for the ESSER III Proposed Spending Plan.
Download a copy of the plan at THIS LINK.