School closures and online learning during the pandemic have led to many students falling behind in their schoolwork. To help K-12 schools, states received Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) grants totaling $189.5 billion. The states are distributing the funding as part of the Education Stabilization Fund to public, private, and charter schools to address students needs.
Schools can use the funds for a range of activities, including:
- Summer school classes
- Extended school day or school year programs
- Laptops and other electronic devices, and educational software
- Mental health services and support, and
- Improvements to indoor air quality
ESSER funding by legislation
- $13.2 billion, from the CARES Act, March 2020.
- States have until September 30, 2022, to spend the money
- $54.3 billion, from the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act, December 2020.
- States have until September 30, 2023, to spend the money
- $122 billion, from the American Rescue Plan, March 2021.
- A total of $80 billion was made available to states immediately. To receive the rest of the funding, each state had to submit a spending plan
- States have until September 30, 2024, to spend the money