Section 2001 of the American Rescue Plan (ARP) Act
The American Rescue Plan Act (ARP), passed on March 11, 2021, provided $122.7 billion in supplemental Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) funding, known as the ESSER III Grant. This Act followed the Coronovirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES) that was passed on March 27, 2020 (known as ESSER I) and the Coronovirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriation Act (CRRSA) that was passed on December 27, 2020 (known as ESSER II).
- Woodridge 68's estimated allocation for ESSER I was $308K, for ESSER II was $1.25M and for ESSER III was $2.80M
Funds may be used for pre-award costs dating back to March 13, 2020, when the national emergency was declared, and are available for obligation through September 30, 2024. All expenditures must be linked to an allowable use under the grant.
School Districts that receive ESSER III funding are required to develop a Plan of Use to address the academic, social, emotional and mental health needs of its students, and work to close gaps that were exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Required/Allowable Use of Funds
School districts must reserve at least 20% of its total ESSER allocation to address learning loss through the implementation of evidence-based interventions, such as summer learning or summer enrichment, extended day opportunities, comprehensive after-school programs, or extended school year programs, and ensure that such interventions respond to students’ academic, social, and emotional needs and address the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on underrepresented student subgroups.
The remaining ARP ESSER funds may be used for the same allowable purposes as ESSER I and ESSER II, including hiring new staff to either reduce class size and mitigate the impact of learning loss and/or to avoid layoffs and ensure continuation of needed services.
Planned Use of Funds
School districts that receive ESSER III funding are required to develop a plan for how they are going to use said funds to address the academic, social and emotional needs of their students, especially those most at-risk for failure, who were impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Some general uses of funds are as follows:
- Provide supplemental summer learning opportunities for students in need
- Hire additional temporary school year staff to reduce class sizes in grades K-5
- Hire an additional behavior interventionist and a bilingual liaison to assist students needing support
- Expanded after-school programming to support the academic needs of impacted students
- Complete HVAC upgrades at John L Sipley Elementary & Willow Creek Elementary
- With any leftover funds, provide additional technology and curricular support for students most at risk
More specifically, Woodridge 68's use of funds plan addresses the following:
The extent to which, and how, the funds will be used to ensure that interventions will address the academic, social, emotional and mental health needs of all students, and particularly those students who were disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Engaging in meaningful consultation with stakeholders, including students, families, staff, administration, other school leaders, the staff unions and the community at large.