The Federal American Rescue Plan Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund, also referred to as ARP ESSER or ESSER III, is the last of the federal relief funds meant to assist with COVID-19 recovery. The goal of ARP ESSER is to support local educational agencies in preparing for, and responding to, the impact of COVID-19 on educators, students and families. ARP ESSER funds must be obligated by September 2024 and completely spent by October 2024.

In an advisory, the New Jersey Department of Education followed up on a January 2024 advisory in which it highlighted amendments to its ARP ESSER state plan to share training sessions and resources related to ARP ESSER funds.

  • ARP ESSER Amendment Process Video: This video was created by the Office of Grants Management and explains the step-by-step process of creating an amendment in the electronic web-enable grant system.

ARP ESSER “Spend” Sessions:

  • Maximizing federal funds sessions will provide information on how different federal funds may be used to meet students’ specific, identified needs through guidance shared in the NJDOE’s web resource.  Each March session will highlight a different LEA’s plans for sustainability and its decision-making process: March 12, 2024 and March 28, 2024. Forthcoming April sessions will introduce new funding tables focusing on inclusive practices and arts education.
  • In collaboration with the NJDOE, on March 8, 2024, the New Jersey School-Age Child Care Coalition, an afterschool and out-of-school time professional network, will present on its ESSER Toolkit “A Guide for New Jersey’s School and District Leaders.” Join this session to learn how to use federal funds to partner with quality afterschool, out-of-school time and summer programs to address the impact on students from the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • ARP ESSER Roundtable Series: Join the next session March 20, 2024, “Making the Most of Your ARP ESSER Dollars: Ensuring Fiscal Responsibility.” This session is part of the series that features school district leaders who share best practices and lessons learned.
  • Review Amend Spend Webpage: The website is a guide to help school districts spend ARP ESSER dollars in ways to best support students.

For general ESSER information and resources, please see the ESSER webpage, and for questions, reach out via email.