On May 24, the New Jersey Department of Education (NJDOE) issued a special broadcast bulletin to all school leaders providing information about how to apply for federal coronavirus relief funds.

The full text of the NJDOE broadcast is available here.

An excerpt of the broadcast follows:

Today (May 24), the NJDOE is announcing the release of the following:

  1. The NJDOE’s draft American Rescue Plan (ARP) Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) State Plan for public comment (Deadline: June 3, 2021)
  2. The NJDOE’s LEA Safe Return Plan Template (Deadline: June 24, 2021)
  3. ARP ESSER allocations and grant application (Deadline: November 24, 2021)

Background The ARP Act provides an additional $122 billion in Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ARP ESSER) to States and school districts to help safely reopen, sustain the safe operation of schools, and address the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the nation’s students. To provide guidance for school districts on the allowable uses and the differences between the three ESSER funds, the NJDOE created an ESSER Fact Sheet.

Allocations The ARP ESSER allocations for eligible LEAs are now available on the ARP ESSER website. The allocations announced today include only those subgrants federally required to be made to LEAs based on the LEA’s share of funds received under Title I, Part A in the 2020-2021 school year. The U.S. Department of Education (USDE) structured the release of ARP ESSER funds such that LEAs will first be provided access to two-thirds (2/3) of their ARP ESSER Fund awards and will gain access to the remaining one-third (1/3) of the allocation after the USDE approves the NJDOE’s ARP ESSER State Plan. As detailed below, today the NJDOE is making available for public comment its ARP ESSER State Plan, which includes its proposal for additional projects or subgrants funded by the ARP ESSER State set-aside.

ARP ESSER grant applications for eligible LEAs are now available through the Electronic Web Enabled Grant (EWEG) system. The deadline to submit an application is November 24, 2021. ARP ESSER funds are available for obligation beginning May 24, 2021; LEAs may submit applications any time before November 24 and begin requesting reimbursement upon submission of a substantially approvable application. Please note that, as described above, at this time the application will provide access to 2/3 of the total amount of those subgrants federally required to be made to LEAs based on the LEA’s share of funds received under Title I, Part A in the 2020-2021 school year. As additional ARP ESSER funds become available, LEAs will be able to access those funds via the same application.

For further information, see the full text of the NJDOE’s bulletin which is available here.

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