WASHINGTON, D.C. (JUNE 7, 2021) — Education Reform Now National President Shavar Jeffries released the following statement on today’s deadline for states to submit plans for how they will use their COVID-relief funds from the American Rescue Plan Act to support student achievement:
“When the US. Department of Education begins to review states’ plans for how they intend to allocate their remaining American Rescue Plan funding after plans are submitted by the June 7th deadline, we urge the Department to keep equity top of mind.
The American Rescue Plan Act’s historic investment of $122 billion in K-12 education provides states with the opportunity to target significant resources to the students most impacted by the pandemic and those who have historically been underserved by our public school system. We cannot squander this opportunity.
To best serve students, state plans must detail how they will:
- authentically engage stakeholders, including parents, grandparents, and students;
- accelerate learning through evidence-based strategies like tutoring; and
- demonstrably serve students from historically disadvantaged groups, including BIPOC students, those from low-income families, students with disabilities, English learners, children in foster care, and those experiencing homelessness.
We understand that some of these processes may delay finalization of some aspects of state plans past the June 7th deadline. Nonetheless, we need states, sooner rather than later, to be as specific as possible as to what they intend to do to address unfinished learning and social and emotional health for this summer and for the first few months of the 2021-22 school year.
We hope the Department will be stringent in upholding critical equity guardrails to ensure that all of our students not only have the academic, social, and emotional supports necessary to recover from the pandemic, but to excel in school and in life.”