The American Rescue Plan (ARP) Act, the third federal COVID-19 relief law, passed in March 2021, provides districts one-time funds through the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) III grant program.
We are inviting our stakeholders to share ideas and priorities for using the funds. Please know:
- KUSD is expected to receive $45 million in ESSER III funding.
- Funds must be spent no later than Sept. 30, 2024.
- Funds are intended to help sustain the safe operation of schools and address the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the nation’s students.
KUSD must use a minimum of 20%, or $9 million, to implement evidence-based interventions to address learning loss, for example:
- Intensive small group instruction in reading and/or math to address significant skill gaps during the school day, after school and/or summer school
- Professional learning for teachers on differentiating instruction and deepening content knowledge
- Intervention materials for reading and math
Additional priority areas may include:
- Outreach and Services for Special Populations
- Professional development for staff to better serve English Learners; technology support for parents/guardians; etc.
- Increase translation service available at schools to connect with families
- Mental Health Services and Supports
- Continuation of additional school-based mental health supports; etc.
- Additional counselors, social workers, therapists
- Access to community-based mental health services for students and families
- Education Technology
- Support for student instructional technology devices and platforms; etc.
- Internet access
- Preparedness and Response
- PPE; hand sanitizer; improving indoor air quality; etc.
- Addressing Long-term School Closure
- Additional professional learning to support virtual instruction; etc.
- Staffing Needs
- Continuation of building substitutes; etc.
Districts must ensure that interventions respond to students’ social, emotional, and academic needs and address the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on underrepresented student subgroups, including major racial and ethnic groups; children from low-income families; children with disabilities; English learners; gender; migrant students; students experiencing homelessness; and children and youth in foster care.
We are using a new online platform called ThoughtExchange that allows us to gather feedback from all stakeholders while also allowing our stakeholders to rate the feedback received.This online platform is designed to allow us to easily see common themes as well as differing opinions.
Our first use of this tool will be for Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) III funds. This exchange was open Monday, Nov. 29, through Friday, Dec. 17.
KUSD will use the feedback in discussions with focus groups to develop a spending plan for these stimulus funds. We are using this tool to ensure everyone has a chance to share perspectives and understand what is most important to our stakeholders.