Federal Funding Explained

In 2020 and 2021, Congress passed three stimulus bills that provided nearly $190.5 billion to the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) Fund. Funds are provided to SEAs and LEAs to address the impact that COVID-19 has had, and continues to have, on elementary and secondary schools.

- ESSER 1: The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act, passed on March 27, 2020, provided $13.5 billion to the ESSER Fund.

- ESSER II: The Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2021 (CRRSA), passed on Dec. 27, 2020, provided $54.3 billion in supplemental ESSER funding. Funding must be obligated by 9/30/2023.

- ESSER III: The American Rescue Plan Act, passed on March 11, 2021, provided $122.7 billion in supplemental ESSER funding. Funding must be obligated by 9/30/2024.

General Uses of Federal Funding

  • Conducting activities to address the needs of students from low-income families, children with disabilities, English learners, racial and ethnic minorities, students experiencing homelessness, and foster care youth
  • Purchasing PPE and the supplies needed to clean and disinfect schools
  • Improving indoor air quality and ventilation
  • Repairing and improving school facilities to reduce risk of virus transmission and exposure to environmental health hazards
  • Purchasing educational technology (including hardware, software, and connectivity as well as assistive technology or adaptive equipment)
  • Mental health services
  • Implementing public health protocols including policies in line with guidance from the CDC

Learn More About Federal Funding with Dr. Ray Heipp

In this four-part video series, Dr. Ray takes an in-depth look at the federal funds available to schools and facilities through ESSER, the American Rescue Plan, and other current funding.

Watch our Federal Funding Explained series

  • Gain a better overall understanding of available funding.
  • Learn how different departments within your school or facility can utilize the funding, including Purchasing Departments, Health Services Professionals, Libraries, Special Education Directors, Health and P.E. Coordinators, and more.

Want to learn how you can use your federal funding? Download our supply list with products to keep your students safe and help them succeed at school.

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