The federal governments allocated three rounds of relief funding to public schools during the course of the pandemic. Its most recent allocation, the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 was enacted on March 11, 2021 will provide $4.5 billion to Ohio school districts. These monies, commonly referred to as ESSER III or ARP ESSER can be applied to needs arising between March 13, 2020 and September 30, 2024. The purpose of this funding is to help safely reopen and sustain the safe operation of schools and address the impact of COVID-19 on the nation’s student’s academic, social, emotional and mental health needs. Grand Valley Local Schools has been awarded $3,112,464.47 in ARP ESSER III funds. To date the district has previously been awarded ESSER I and ESSER II funds of $383,642.70 and $1,384,885.15 respectively to safely reopen schools, sustain school operations and to meet student needs.
Funds from ESSER I and ESSER II have been allocated for the following uses:
· Summer Intervention Programs, before and after school programs
· Cleaning and sanitizing equipment and supplies including 360 sanitizing machines, hand held sanitizers and various sanitizing supplies
· PPE including masks, gloves and hand sanitizer
· Staffing needs including Intervention tutors, Teachers/Aides for online learning, Classroom teachers, Middle School Principal, staff retention payments
· Technology hardware and software to establish a 1:1 device for every student
· Software for online learning
· Math, Science, Reading, Career Tech curriculum, both hard copy and electronic
· Student temperature monitors for entrances
· Water bottle filling stations throughout the buildings
· Staff and supplies for meal distribution
· District vehicles for student transportation
· District vehicle for equipment transport
· Assessment software to aid in monitoring student progress
· Additional classroom technology devices
· HVAC repairs/monitoring
· Wi FI Hotspots
· Student reengagement efforts
· Drive through and outdoor graduation supplies (Drive in graduation celebration)
ARP ESSER III funds will be allocated by the Grand Valley Local Schools as follows:
1. How will ARP ESSER funds be used to implement prevention and mitigation strategies that are, to the greatest extent practicable, consistent with the most recent CDC guidance on reopening schools, in order to continuously and safely open and operate schools for in-person learning?
The ARP ESSER III funds will be used by the district to meet proper social distancing requirements while in school and while being transported in accordance with CDC guidance, local health department recommendations/requirements and ODE requirements. Proper cleaning and sanitizing procedures and protocols will be adhered to. To meet these protocols, additional equipment, student furniture/tables, PPE, cleaning supplies, various medical supplies will be necessary for students to be able to attend in person. Additional hand held sprayers for proper sanitization of classrooms, school buses and additional 360 sprayers for classrooms and indoor facilities will be purchased. The protocols learned during over the past year the past 15 months for in person learning will be expanded upon to the extent possible to assure student/staff safety.
2. How will the LEA use the funds it reserves under section 2001(e)(1) of the ARP Act to address the academic impact of lost instructional time through the implementation of evidence-based interventions, such as summer learning or summer enrichment, extended day, comprehensive afterschool programs, or extended school year?
The district will use ARP ESSER III funds to address learning loss during the pandemic by hiring at least the following number of tutors for specialized intervention: 2 math and science tutors, 1/2 FTE ELA tutor, 2 elementary tutors, providing summer and/or before and after school interventions, purchasing additional software to assist teachers to track student progress, purchase additional textbooks, classroom software/ support supplies, classroom technology needed to provide effective instruction. The district will provide necessary teacher professional development, return the In School Suspension program to keep students in school and engaged, provide motivational speakers with engaging topics for students, provide student incentives and hire an additional 1st grade teacher to address learning issues at both the Kindergarten and 1st grade levels to allow for workable class sizes at that grade level. Additional strategies will be addressed as needs arise.
3. How will the LEA spend its remaining ARP ESSER funds consistent with section 2001(e)(2) of the ARP Act?
The remaining ARP ESSER III funds will used to provide improved technology to aid teachers and students, incentives for staff, school vehicle purchases to maintain proper distancing to and from school, cleaning/sanitizing supplies, to continue to fund the Middle School Principal position (a position that had been eliminated prior to the pandemic), support for new family liaison position to include supplies and equipment , floor sanitizing machines, cleaning/sanitizing supplies, HVAC repairs, cafeteria tables (to address proper distancing for all in person students), advisor stipends for expanded student opportunities (a result of a district survey indicated the desire for additional engagements with more clubs), student motivation opportunities, textbooks, summer transportation or summer/before and after school programs, additional tech support for additional technology purchases and technology needs. Additional items not included here may be included as needs arise.
4. How will the LEA ensure that the interventions it implements, including but not limited to the interventions implemented under section 2001(e)(1) of the ARP Act to address the academic impact of lost instructional time, will respond to the academic, social, emotional and mental health needs of all students, and particularly those students disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, including students from low-income families, students of color, English learners, children with disabilities, students experiencing homelessness, children in foster care and migratory students
The LEA will ensure that the interventions it implements address the needs of students by examining baseline data taken in May 2021 and September 2021 in the areas of academic achievement, attendance, discipline, visits to the clinic, requests to speak with counselors, participation in counselor/CPST led student support groups, student hospitalizations, homelessness, students in foster care and family attendance at school activities. Data will be collected throughout the year and reviewed by administrators, DLT, BLTs, TBTs and stakeholders to measure effectiveness and determine courses of action.
5. Briefly describe how the LEA determined its most important educational needs as a result of COVID-19.
The LEA determined needs by administering the MAP assessments to all K-11 students in May 2021, surveying all stakeholders (community, staff, families, students) in May 2021, collecting data from the 2019-20 and 2020-21 school years. Seeking input from community agencies including mental health and public health agencies. LEA staff was surveyed and administrator, DLT, BLT and TBT discussions reviewed data to determine needs.
6. Briefly describe the LEA's proposed timeline for providing services and assistance to students and staff with these funds.
Services have already began with previous ESSER I and ESSER II funding sources. A summer program was conducted for all grade levels at the conclusion of the 2020/2021 school year. Efforts will be ongoing year round through the expiration of this source of funding (and beyond) to monitor progress with students, teachers, families with interactions, surveys, family nights, assessments, etc.
7. Briefly describe the extent to which the LEA intends to use ARP ESSER funds to promote remote learning
It is anticipated that the district will return to 100% in person learning for the 2021/2022 school year. A remote learning program, if necessary, is anticipated to be conducted county wide by the Ashtabula County ESC for interested students. The district will, however, have a 1:1 ratio of devices for students should the need arise to become remote at any time during the school
year. The district will maintain this ability by purchasing necessary updated technology to enhance the existing technology and/or repair or replace any outdated or damaged devices.
8. Describe the LEA's plan for addressing learning loss by: administering and using high- quality assessments to assess students' academic progress and meet students' academic needs, including through differentiating instruction; implementing evidence-based activities to meet the comprehensive needs of students; providing information and assistance to parents and families on how they can effectively support students, including in a distance learning environment; and/or tracking student attendance and improving student engagement in distance education.
LEA's plan for addressing learning loss:
-Hiring 4.5 academic tutors who will meet with teachers regularly to determine the type and extent of intervention needed.
-Establishing a School/Community Liaison who will work with families and community agencies to address student, family and community needs as they relate to student achievement and social emotional learning.
-Using data from MAP and IXL as well as curriculum based assessments regularly to determine academic progress.
-Reviewing data from attendance, discipline, student and family support, stakeholder surveys, Multi-Tiered Systems of Support (MTSS) in all buildings, special education every 4.5 weeks.
Establishing GRITT (Getting Results in Tough Times) days once each month as a time when students and staff will review data, set and modify goals in order to ensure an educational and social/emotional path forward.