Here’s a state-by-state breakdown of education stimulus funds

$122 billion in ESSER funds will become available to state educational agencies this month
By: | March 24, 2021
Students eat lunch separated by dividers in Wisconsin's School District of Waupaca.Students eat lunch separated by dividers in Wisconsin's School District of Waupaca.

The U.S. Education Department will be making nearly $122 billion in ESSER funds allocated as part of the American Rescue Plan Act available to state educational agencies this month according to a letter from Education Secretary Miguel Cardona.

“We will move quickly to get these vital resources to you,” Cardona wrote in a letter to chief state school officers. “It is with this same sense of urgency that state educational agencies (SEAs) and school districts should plan to expend these funds to safely reopen schools as expeditiously as possible this spring, sustain their healthy operations, and address the significant academic, social, emotional, and mental health needs of their students.”

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The department also released a state-by-state allocations table with the methodology used to calculate the allocations, based on the proportional share of FY 2020 Title I, Part A funds, as well as a fact sheet on what the department is calling the ARP ESSER fund.

Cardona said the funds will enable SEAs, LEAs, and schools “to support students who have been most severely impacted by the pandemic, which has even further exacerbated the inequities in our education system.”

He said the funds will expand opportunities for “students from low-income backgrounds, students of color, students with disabilities, English learners, students experiencing homelessness or trauma, and students without access to technology.”

ED officials said guidance will be forthcoming on ARP ESSER requirements for state and local maintenance of equity calculations.

Charles Hendrix covers education funding and other Title I issues for LRP Publications.