Responding to the needs of U.S. schools faced with the risk of learning loss resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, the federal government passed the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), which provides $123B for K–12 public schools, the largest single stimulus funding ever directed to K–12 education.
Learning A-Z is here to help teachers, curriculum directors, and school or district decision-makers by providing vital information to help leaders make the most of this unprecedented funding opportunity.
- Adds additional funds to the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund (ESSERF) program created by the CARES Act (March, 2020) and supplemented by CRRSA (December, 2020)
- Provides $123B for K–12 public schools
- Funds must be used by September 2023
- 90% of funds sent directly to local education agencies within 60 days of state disbursement
- $22B to address learning loss
- An additional $2.75B for private schools
- Schools to receive an average of $2,500 per student
- Low-income districts may receive up to $8K per student; high-affluence districts less than $1K per student
Permitted Uses for ARPA Funds:
- Activities allowed by the Every Student Succeeds Act (2015)
- Evidence-based programs addressing learning loss, including: summer learning; supplemental after-school programs; classroom instruction or online learning during summer months; and addressing the needs of low-income students, students with disabilities, English language learners, migrant students, students experiencing homelessness, and children in foster care
- Resources for in-person learning (hiring/layoff prevention, PPE, social distancing support, and more)
- Improvements in Wi-Fi and broadband access
- Educational technology purchases aiding in regular substantive educational interaction between students and their instructors, especially low-income students and students with disabilities
- Discretionary funds for school principals to address the needs of their individual schools
- Other activities necessary to maintain the operation and continuity of services
- Schools may also purchase multi-year subscriptions with ESSR II funds!
Check out these references for more information on ARPA:
- EducationWeek: The Summer Learning & Enrichment Collaborative will assist states, school districts, and others in planning how to use new relief funds
- EducationWeek: See What the Huge COVID-19 Aid Deal Biden Has Signed Means for Education, in Two Charts
- Learning Policy Institute: An Unparalleled Investment in U.S. Public Education: Analysis of the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021
Help Bridge the Learning Gap
We hope this information is useful to you. We’re honored to be able to support you and the work you do! With access to these new funds, we hope you can help address learning loss, close gaps, and enable each student to succeed.