Biden-Harris Administration to Announce New Actions to Help Schools Reopen Safely and Meet Students’ Needs

Biden-Harris Administration to Announce New Actions to Help Schools Reopen Safely and Meet Students’ Needs

President Biden will announce $81 billion in funding from the American Rescue Plan to be released today to states for school re-opening
March 24, 2021

Today, at the National Safe School Reopening Summit hosted by the U.S. Department of Education (Department), President Biden and Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona will announce additional steps the Biden-Harris Administration is taking to help schools safely and quickly reopen and meet the needs of all students.

President Biden will announce that $81 billion of American Rescue Plan (ARP) funds will be released today to all 50 States, the District of Columbia, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico to support their efforts to get students back in the classroom safely for in person learning, keep schools open once students are back, and address the academic, social, emotional, and mental health needs of all students. Secretary Cardona also will announce the launch of a new Summer Learning & Enrichment Collaborative, a partnership between the Department and the Council of Chief State School Officers and the National Governors Association, to help states use ARP funding to develop high-quality summer learning and enrichment programs for all students, with a focus on addressing the needs of student groups disproportionately affected by COVID-19.

Today’s announcements are part of the Biden-Harris Administration’s broader effort to provide states, schools, and communities with the resources and support they need to return to in-person learning safely and quickly, and achieve the President’s goal of reopening the majority of K-8 schools within the first 100 days of the administration. Secretary Cardona also will announce that as part of this effort, he will travel to local school districts over the coming weeks to listen and learn from them, and to help more schools and districts in their efforts to reopen and stay open. The Secretary will then report back to the White House on what he learns.

“It is my top priority to get students back in the classroom for in-person instruction safely and quickly,” said Secretary Cardona. “I continue to hear from students and educators across the country who are eager to get back to in-person learning, and these resources will help schools not only reopen safely, but also to support students who were falling behind even before the pandemic. As states and schools use American Rescue Plan funds to reopen their doors, the Department of Education is committed to helping them build successful programs that will reach students most in need this spring, summer, and into the fall.”

More details about the announcements include:

President Biden to Announce $81 Billion in American Rescue Plan Funding Available Today

President Biden will announce that $81 billion in American Rescue Plan funds will be made available for states today to support their efforts to safely return to in-person instruction as expeditiously as possible this spring and meet the needs of all students. The American Rescue Plan’s Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ARP ESSER) fund provides $122 billion in relief for Pre-K-12 schools to reopen safely and address the academic, social, emotional, and mental health needs of their students. As of today, two-thirds of the funds—$81 billion in total—will be made available to states immediately. The Department of Education is encouraging states to develop and implement plans to immediately utilize that funding to get more schools opened safely this spring and work to close the gaps in education equity that the pandemic has exacerbated. The remainder of ARP ESSER funds will become available after states submit the plans they are developing and implementing for using ARP ESSER funds to safely reopen schools and meet the needs of students to the Department.

Specific state allocations are listed below:

State

ARP ESSER Fund Allocation Available March 24, 2021

Total ARP ESSER Fund Allocation

 

 

 

ALABAMA

$1,346,713,644

$2,020,070,466

ALASKA

239,138,089

358,707,134

ARIZONA

1,721,399,131

2,582,098,697

ARKANSAS

835,485,222

1,253,227,833

CALIFORNIA

10,045,923,031

15,068,884,546

COLORADO

777,552,421

1,166,328,632

CONNECTICUT

737,279,916

1,105,919,874

DELAWARE

273,822,643

410,733,965

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA

257,544,769

386,317,154

FLORIDA

4,692,164,292

7,038,246,438

GEORGIA

2,832,914,163

4,249,371,244

HAWAII

274,885,843

412,328,764

IDAHO

293,294,694

439,942,041

ILLINOIS

3,369,992,036

5,054,988,054

INDIANA

1,329,822,704

1,994,734,056

IOWA

516,344,144

774,516,216

KANSAS

553,723,455

830,585,182

KENTUCKY

1,389,848,771

2,084,773,157

LOUISIANA

1,736,975,550

2,605,463,325

MAINE

274,202,188

411,303,282

MARYLAND

1,300,757,868

1,951,136,802

MASSACHUSETTS

1,220,085,382

1,830,128,073

MICHIGAN

2,479,888,752

3,719,833,128

MINNESOTA

880,430,601

1,320,645,901

MISSISSIPPI

1,084,798,569

1,627,197,854

MISSOURI

1,304,352,810

1,956,529,215

MONTANA

254,679,491

382,019,236

NEBRASKA

363,939,079

545,908,619

NEVADA

714,665,595

1,071,998,392

NEW HAMPSHIRE

233,667,755

350,501,633

NEW JERSEY

1,843,058,469

2,764,587,703

NEW MEXICO

652,704,171

979,056,256

NEW YORK

5,992,520,557

8,988,780,836

NORTH CAROLINA

2,399,461,137

3,599,191,706

NORTH DAKOTA

203,511,253

305,266,879

OHIO

2,981,378,065

4,472,067,097

OKLAHOMA

995,721,713

1,493,582,570

OREGON

747,352,489

1,121,028,734

PENNSYLVANIA

3,331,302,101

4,996,953,151

PUERTO RICO

1,977,292,507

2,965,938,760

RHODE ISLAND

276,677,073

415,015,610

SOUTH CAROLINA

1,408,034,325

2,112,051,487

SOUTH DAKOTA

254,679,491

382,019,236

TENNESSEE

1,658,425,387

2,487,638,081

TEXAS

8,279,059,186

12,418,588,778

UTAH

410,350,713

615,526,070

VERMONT

190,109,425

285,164,138

VIRGINIA

1,406,327,167

2,109,490,751

WASHINGTON

1,235,000,714

1,852,501,071

WEST VIRGINIA

507,611,952

761,417,928

WISCONSIN

1,027,189,903

1,540,784,854

WYOMING

202,472,927

303,709,391

TOTALS

81,316,533,333

121,974,800,000

 

Secretary Cardona to Launch the Summer Learning & Enrichment Collaborative

Too many students have experienced interruptions in learning over the past year of the pandemic and have experienced effects on their social and emotional wellbeing through time apart from friends and community. Summer presents a key opportunity to accelerate learning for students and provide new avenues for students to safely engage with each other and in fun activities centered around their growth and development.

During the Summit, Secretary Cardona will announce the launch of the Summer Learning & Enrichment Collaborative and call on states to use ARP funding to build effective summer programs to help address the lost instructional and extracurricular time students may have experienced as a result of the pandemic, particularly for underserved communities. The Summer Learning & Enrichment Collaborative is a professional learning community that brings relevant stakeholders to the table to discuss how to build effective plans for high-quality, evidence-based summer learning and enrichment. The Collaborative, in partnership with the Council of Chief State School Officers and the National Governors Association, will launch in April 2021 and bring education leaders and experts together as they develop their plans for this summer, with a focus on students who have been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic. The Collaborative will help build capacity for states and school districts, in partnership with other key stakeholders, to use ARP ESSER funds to identify and implement evidence-based summer learning and enrichment strategies that meet the needs of all students. The Collaborative will build and deepen partnerships across states, districts, and among educators, parents, philanthropy, and non-profit partners to scale up and sustain successful programs. More than $1.2 billion of the ARP ESSER funds will be used by states, school districts, and schools to offer evidence-based summer learning and enrichment programs, and states and districts may use billions of dollars more for these vital programs.

Secretary Cardona to Launch School Reopening Tour

Secretary Cardona will also announce that he will travel to local communities in the coming weeks as part of the Department’s ongoing efforts to support states, schools, students, parents, and educators as they navigate returning to in-person learning. In the weeks following the Summit, Secretary Cardona will visit schools that have successfully reopened and stayed open to listen and learn from their experiences; he will also visit schools that are facing roadblocks and challenges as they work to reopen to provide support and technical assistance. He will meet with educators, students, and district leaders during the tour and discuss reopening strategies including implementing CDC’s recommended mitigation measures for K-12 schools, ensuring reopening efforts are advancing equity, and supporting students and communities most impacted by COVID-19.

Secretary Cardona will share what he is hearing and learning on the visits with other states and districts and across the Biden-Harris Administration to help more schools reopen quickly and safely and reach the President’s goal of reopening the majority of K-8 schools within the first 100 days of his administration.

His engagement with schools will help to highlight what’s working in school reopening across the country, share out key lessons with other schools who are engaged in the same effort, and help to leverage the Administration’s whole-of-government approach to COVID-19 response to make sure we are rapidly and safely accelerating toward reopening all schools.

These announcements are part of a series of steps the Biden-Harris Administration has taken to help schools reopen, including releasing Volume 1 of the COVID-19 Handbook, creating a “Safer Schools and Campuses Best Practices Clearinghouse” that will be released next month, calling on states to prioritize vaccinations for Pre-K-12 teachers and staff, and directing billions in funding to states for COVID-19 screening testing for educators, students, and staff in schools.