Section 313 of the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations (CRRSA) Act, 2021.
Period of Funds Availability
Same as ESSER Fund (CARES Act): May be used for pre-award costs dating back to March 13, 2020, when the national emergency was declared. Available for obligation by SEAs and subrecipients through September 30, 2023
Use of Funds
Same as ESSER Fund (CARES Act): Note that the “additional” LEA allowable uses of funds under the CRRSA Act (addressing learning loss, preparing schools for reopening, and testing, repairing, and upgrading projects to improve air quality in school buildings) already are permitted under the CARES Act.
The CRRSA Act includes a separate program of Emergency Assistance for Non-Public Schools for which eligible non-public schools may apply to an SEA to receive services or assistance. Consequently, LEAs are not required to provide equitable services under ESSER II.
Maintenance of Effort (MOE)
Under the CRRSA Act, a State that receives ESSER II funds must maintain support for elementary and secondary education and higher education in FY 2022 based on the proportional share of the State’s support for elementary and secondary education and higher education relative to the State’s overall spending averaged over FYs 2017, 2018, and 2019.
Under the CRRSA Act, each SEA that receives ESSER II funds must meet the CARES Act reporting requirements that apply to ESSER funds and submit a report to the Secretary within six months of award that contains a detailed accounting of the use of ESSER II funds, that includes how the State is using funds to measure and address learning loss among students disproportionately affected by the coronavirus and school closures, including: low-income students, children with disabilities, English learners, racial and ethnic minorities, students experiencing homelessness, and children and youth in foster care.
Tracking of Funds
ESSER II funds must be tracked separately from ESSER funds and ARP (ESSER III) funds.
Allowable Use of Funds
Expenditures for these funds must be necessary and reasonable. Use of Funds by LEAs under the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund for ESSER I and ESSER II LEAs may spend their funds on a wide variety of activities as identified under the CARES Act (Section 18003(d) of the CARES Act and the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 (Sec. 313 (d)). This section reads as follows: “A local education agency that receives funds under this title may use the funds for any of the following:
- Any activity authorized by the ESEA of 1965, including the Native Hawaiian Education Act and the Alaska Native Educational Equity, Support, and Assistance Act (20 U.S.C. 6301 et seq.), the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (20 U.S.C. 1400 et seq.) (‘‘IDEA’’), the Adult Education and Family Literacy Act (20 U.S.C. 1400 et seq.), the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act of 2006 (20 U.S.C. 2301 et seq.) (‘‘the Perkins Act’’), or subtitle B of title VII of the McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act (42 U.S.C. 11431 et seq.).
- Coordination of preparedness and response efforts of local educational agencies with State, local, Tribal, and territorial public health departments, and other relevant agencies, to improve coordinated responses among such entities to prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus.
- Providing principals and others school leaders with the resources necessary to address the needs of their individual schools.
- Activities to address the unique needs of low-income children or students, children with disabilities, English learners, racial and ethnic minorities, students experiencing homelessness, and Ensure FLEXIBILITY + EFFECTIVENESS foster care youth, including how outreach and service delivery will meet the needs of each population.
- Developing and implementing procedures and systems to improve the preparedness and response efforts of local educational agencies.
- Training and professional development for staff of the local educational agency on sanitation and minimizing the spread of infectious diseases.
- Purchasing supplies to sanitize and clean the facilities of a local educational agency, including buildings operated by such agency.
- Planning for, coordinating, and implementing activities during long-term closures, including providing meals to eligible students, providing technology for online learning to all students, providing guidance for carrying out requirements under the IDEA and ensuring other educational services can continue to be provided consistent with all Federal, State, and local requirements.
- Purchasing educational technology (including hardware, software, and connectivity) for students who are served by the local educational agency that aids in regular and substantive educational interaction between students and their classroom instructors, including low-income students and children with disabilities, which may include assistive technology or adaptive equipment.
- Providing mental health services and supports.
- Planning and implementing activities related to summer learning and supplemental after-school programs, including providing classroom instruction or online learning during the summer months and addressing the needs of low-income students, children with disabilities, English learners, migrant students, students experiencing homelessness, and children in foster care.
- Addressing learning loss among students, including low-income students, children with disabilities, English learners, racial and ethnic minorities, students experiencing homelessness, and children and youth in foster care, of the local educational agency, including by:
- a. Administering and using high-quality assessments that are valid and reliable, to accurately assess students’ academic progress and assist educators in meeting students’ academic needs, including through differentiating instruction.
- b. Implementing evidence-based activities to meet the comprehensive needs of students.
- c. Providing information and assistance to parents and families on how they can effectively support students, including in a distance learning environment.
- d. Tracking student attendance and improving student engagement in distance education.
- School facility repairs and improvements to enable operation of schools to reduce risk of virus transmission and exposure to environmental health hazards, and to support student health needs.
- Inspection, testing, maintenance, repair, replacement, and upgrade projects to improve the indoor air quality in school facilities, including mechanical and non-mechanical heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems, filtering, purification and other air cleaning, fans, control systems, and window and door repair and replacement.
- Other activities that are necessary to maintain the operation of and continuity of services in local educational agencies and continuing to employ existing staff of the local educational agency. LEAs receive Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Funds based on their relative share of Title I-A funds, but these funds are not Title I-A funds. These funds may benefit any school in an LEA regardless of a school’s Title I-A status. Funds may be used on districtwide activities and/or to benefit any individual school.
The USED generally does not consider the following to be an allowable use of funds:
- Bonuses, merit pay, or similar expenditures, unless related to disruptions or closures related to COVID-19.
- Subsidizing or offsetting executive salaries and benefits of individuals who are not employees of the school district.
- Expenditures related to state or local teacher or faculty unions or associations.