Statement on Sept. 30 Pandemic Recovery Spending Deadline

WASHINGTON, Oct. 03, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Today, Collaborative for Student Success Director Jim Cowen shared the following statement on the September 30th deadline for spending the first wave of the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund (ESSER I).

Sept. 30 was the deadline to draw down $13.2 Billion from the first of three historic investments in America’s schools under the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund (ESSER I). It is a moment to pause and acknowledge the tremendous work that education leaders, teachers and families have done to help schools return to learning after one of the most detrimental events in modern history.

While we applaud the application of ESSER I, we now turn to the next step of ensuring the $176.3 billion from ESSER II and ESSER III are used as wisely and expeditiously as possible to address the academic, social, and emotional needs of students.

Recent results from the National Assessment of Education Progress (NAEP) reinforce the need for these investments. Overall, average scores for 9-year-olds in 2022 declined five points in reading and seven points in math compared to pre-pandemic in 2020. This is the largest average score decline in reading since 1990, and the first-ever such decline in math since the assessments started in the 1970s.

We encourage state leaders to ensure remaining federal dollars are spent on the most promising practices – such as those highlighted on platforms like the EduRecoveryHub. We further hope that states set up systems to track how these funds are being spent since families and communities deserve the most transparent picture possible. The following states are leading the way in this effort:

As the country continues to rebound after the pandemic, we are inspired by these examples and excited to continue supporting them and other partners and allies as we all help are schools recover.

CONTACT: Josh Parrish Collaborative for Student Success (208) 392-7245 jparrish@forstudentsuccess.org