What is keeping the districts from spending the Covid Relief Fund?

2020 and 2021 েন্ট 190 billion goes to schools through the Federal Relief Fund through the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund (ESSER).

But why aren’t schools spending money? The answer অথবা or, more precisely, the answer কো gives a glimpse of the complex state of post-covid education.

Districts have received funding based on their Title I funds, and ESSER funds must be spent by September 2024. Although many districts have planned how they will use their funds, they have not actually spent it to date.

Covid continues to throw a wrench at the plan

New COVID variants creating new waves of transmission continue to complicate district planning.

According to a report from AASA, superintendents must collaborate with many stakeholders as they plan spending. While they are able to reconsider spending decisions, it is complicated – many districts may wait until the end of spring when they need to finalize local budgets to reconsider or adjust their ARP spending priorities.

The AASA report noted that “the Delta and Omicron variants have complicated many districts’ plans to potentially change gears in the 2022-23 school year as labor recovery efforts in the fall and winter of 2021, short-term school closures and other PPIs were complicated. “We need to continue investing heavily in related supplies and needs.”

The constant wave of transition has forced many districts to become alternatives between private, hybrid and full-online education. Many districts have yet to fully assess where learning gaps exist and what students need to do academically, emotionally and socially. Until a clear picture emerges করা spending COVID relief funds to close a picture-learning gap that is constantly changing with the change of Covid remains unexpected.

“We’ve spent the whole year looking at gaps, what our kids did or didn’t learn when they were off, what they need now, what the social and emotional issues are and where their learning challenges are,” said Dr. Kenny Rodrজguez, superintendent of the Grandview C-4 School District in Missouri. .

“We had a good plan, and a nice idea, but we had to constantly plan and adjust based on what we saw with our kids. You’re making a plan for something that’s constantly moving and constantly changing,” he said.

Supply chain problems make it difficult to raise funds before the September 2024 deadline

The AASA report further noted that districts were having difficulty spending their relief funds on HVAC and improving capital in school and district buildings. Most district leaders say they plan to use the funds for such improvements, but more than half say it will be difficult to use the funds for infrastructure and HVAC upgrades due to supply chain problems, labor and material shortages, and current deadlines and project speed.

States are slow to get money in districts

Funding comes with requirements and following and documenting those requirements can be an involved process.

“Dollars have a lot of regulations and record-keeping – they can only be spent in a certain way, so all oversight must be coordinated,” said Dr. Curtis Finch, superintendent of the Dear Valley Unified School District in Arizona.

Laura Assion
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