What is ESSER III?
ESSER (Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief) is the education part of the American Rescue Plan (ARP) Act passed in March of 2021, which gives school districts additional federal money to help them to reopen and function safely over the next 3 years as they recover from the COVID-19 pandemic. ESSER III funding is intended to support the safe reopening and sustaining safe operations of schools while meeting students' academic, social, emotional, and mental health needs resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic.
Community Input Process
Through surveys, targeted focus groups, community canvassing, and direct one-to-one outreach in multiple languages over the course of several weeks, Somerville Public Schools gathered input from students, parents/guardians, and staff that informs the key focus areas for the use of ESSER III funding. The plan put forth to the School Committee reflects priorities identified through this community engagement process.
Somerville Public Schools Plan
ESSER III funding will be used to support 5 targeted areas over the grant period (FY22 through FY24). Districts were required to allocate at least 20% of ESSER III funding to address "learning loss" due to the pandemic. We have budgeted 25% under "learning loss".
- Social Emotional Learning / Mental Health: $2,477,590
- Special Education: $1,170,256
- Learning Loss: $2,090,307
- Multilingual Support: $1,072,044
- Enrichment including Out of School Time Programming: $1,553,355