Posted by Rei Murray on May 31, 2021
Have you heard of ESSER (Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief)?
In 2020 and 2021, Congress passed three stimulus bills, providing approximately $190.5 billion to the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund.
Two of these stimuli were distributed in 2020, and the third, the American Rescue Plan Act, was issued on March 11, 2021. This Act provided $122.7 billion in supplemental ESSER funding to help safely reopen and sustain the safe operation of schools and address the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the Nation’s students.
Here are some helpful links:
Here are some basics about the American Rescue Plan Act:
⦁ The State Educational Agencies (SEAs) are required to reserve their allocations to carry out activities: 5% to address learning loss, 1% for afterschool activities, and 1% for summer learning programs.
⦁ The Local Education Agencies (LEAs) must reserve at least 20% of the funding they receive to address learning loss.
⦁ Two-thirds of ESSER funds are immediately available to states, while remaining funds will be made available after states submit ESSER implementation plans.
Generally, in determining whether an activity is an allowable use of funds, a State or LEA must determine:
• Is the use of funds intended to prevent, prepare for, or respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, including its impact on the social, emotional, mental health, and academic needs of students?
• Does the use of funds fall under one of the authorized uses of ESSER or GEER funds?
• Is the use of funds permissible under the Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards (Uniform Guidance, 2 CFR Part 200)? In particular, is it necessary and reasonable for the performance of the ESSER or GEER award?
The following music education activities/equipment are eligible for ESSER funds:
⦁ Purchasing protective equipment for use in the music room (allowable - #3, #5)
⦁ Supporting training for music educators on strategies to conduct safe in-person music instruction (allowable - #6)
⦁ Purchasing sanitizing supplies (allowable - #7)
⦁ Purchase technology devices for instruction and assessment through virtual applications (allowable - #9)
⦁ Paying for additional instructors to offer remediation in music (allowable - #11)
⦁ Purchasing materials to allow for more physical distance including purchasing equipment to make music mobile (allowable - #12)
An LEA may use ESSER funds for the broad range of activities. The activities that are listed in section 18003(d) of the CARES Act, section 313(d) of the CRRSA Act, and section 2001(e) of the ARP Act that an LEA may support with ESSER funds are:
To see the funds available for your state, visit the Education Stabilization Fund website.
The U.S. Department of Education has also compiled a list of frequently asked questions that you can view here:
Frequently Asked Questions Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Programs Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Programs