educationOn March 11, 2021, the American Rescue Plan (ARP) Act was signed into law. The United States Department of Education (USDOE) is providing an additional $121.9 billion for the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund (ESSER III Fund). These grants will be awarded to provide local educational agencies, like The School District of Lee County, with emergency relief funds to address the impact that COVID-19 has had, and continues to have, on our students and schools. The School District of Lee County will receive $189,170,730 and must reserve at least 20% of that to measure and address the impact of lost learning time and evidence-based interventions. Those interventions must respond to students’ academic, social, emotional, and mental health needs.

The District is currently building its plan on how to spend those dollars to meet the individual needs of students while supporting employees and the community. In addition, they are creating an Instructional Continuity Plan to ensure the continuation of educational operations during periods of disruption to in-person learning.

The District is asking the community to participate in how to prioritize this funding.

There are many ways to participate:

  1. Head to the website to read about the allowable expenses for ESSER III and our Instructional Continuity Plans and submit a comment: https://www.leeschools.net/our_district/arp_esser. Take a short survey by December 15, 2021: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/39QKVS3
  2. Attend the School Board Briefing on Tuesday, December 7th at 1pm at the Lee County Public Education Center: 2855 Colonial Boulevard to provide public comment;
  3. Attend one of two virtual information sessions about ESSER III and the ICP. Thursday, December 9th at 5pm: https://bit.ly/3xPmrh3 Friday, December 10th at Noon: https://bit.ly/2ZWGkWY

We appreciate your input in determining the best use of these funds and the best ways to provide instructional continuity. You are an important partner in the school community as we all work to maximize the educational experience for Lee County students.

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