Large federal government-funded programs can be confusing and daunting; the American Rescue Plan Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief, also known as ARP ESSER, is no exception. The ESSER was created as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act in March 2020. The CARES act addresses multiple macro issues. Providing ongoing support to elementary and secondary schools across the nation is placed alongside healthcare as an initiative of paramount importance. While there seems to be many resources available on this funding, most of those resources focus primarily on people navigating within state-based departments of education and local education agencies.
At Pearl, we regularly get asked questions by private companies about how they can participate in their state’s ARP ESSER-funded tutoring initiatives. Several of our clients are private companies stepping up to help mitigate COVID-19 related learning loss. If your tutoring company is prepared to scale quickly and you have a host of great instructors, you may qualify to be a sub-recipient of this funding.
How does the ARP ESSER fund work?
The most recent update to the ARP ESSER makes available $130 billion for K-12 schools. The funds are granted to the individual states for distribution to districts. The districts are given quite a bit of flexibility as needs in K-12 education vary widely: from foundational issues (like the need for more teachers) to specific COVID-elated concerns like significant learning loss. Even though districts generally have flexibility around how funds are applied, in some cases the ARP ESSER funding can dictate specific requirements. For example, districts must meet a benchmark of using at least 20% of their ARP ESSER funding towards mitigating COVID-related learning loss.
How can tutoring companies benefit from ARP ESSER funds?
This significant earmark for learning loss is allocated for evidence-based programs, especially 1-on-1 or small group tutoring initiatives. This is where private tutoring companies or organizations can come in and shine. Tutoring companies are eligible as a “subrecipient” because they can help support or supplement staffing tutor positions with qualified instructors.
The ARP ESSER allows for a wide range of entities to be included as potential subrecipients, including the actual Local Education Agencies, tutoring companies, academic support organizations, and any entity that meets the standards set forth to receive a subgrant per the federal government and individual state’s subgrant and procurement standards. In most cases, inquiries to participate as a subrecipient can be made directly to the State Education Agency (i.e the Department of Education).
To learn more about how to benefit from ARP ESSER funds as a tutoring company, register here for our upcoming webinar on Demystifying ARP ESSER Funding for Tutoring Companies at noon EST on Nov 5, 2021.
How Pearl can help educational institutions and tutoring companies take advantage of ARP ESSER funds
At Pearl, we focus on being the technical partner for ARP ESSER fund recipients implementing tutoring programs at scale. Our mission is to provide technical infrastructure and services for these programs via our tutoring management software which includes capabilities like: scheduling sessions, administrative tools, a virtual classroom experience optimized for tutoring, data collection, and robust reporting to track program effectiveness and overall impact.
Pearl will evolve quickly over the next couple of months. Between Q42021 and Q12022, we will be announcing partnerships with a state initiative and several prestigious universities to innovate:
- A new 1-to-small group online classroom
- Much more robust data reporting
- Enhanced post-session reports
- CRM (HR) capabilities to manage large cohorts of tutors more efficiently
If you are interested to learn more about these exciting projects, reach out to Pearl’s CRO Nate Casey at firstname.lastname@example.org.