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ESSER/GEER Extra, Volume 15

This week's volume of ESSER/GEER Extra includes a reminder of the November 29, 2021, deadline for submission of the ARP ESSER 7% set-aside application to PDE; new U.S. Department of Education (USDE) guidance on ESSER funds for transportation; PDE's public comment on USDE's proposed ESSER Maintenance of Equity requirement; and USDE's revised ESSER reporting template and public comment request.

All editions of ESSER/GEER Extra are archived on PDE's website.

ARP ESSER 7% Set-Aside Applications Due November 29
School districts and charter schools eligible to receive an allocation of the ARP ESSER 7% set-aside for learning loss, summer enrichment, and afterschool programs (as defined by the ARP Act and Act 24 of 2021) must submit applications to PDE no later than Monday, November 29, 2021. The deadline is a requirement of Act 24, and extensions cannot be granted.

For LEAs with questions, a few more PDE virtual Office Hours remain. Please register in advance for these one-hour sessions, which will allow you to ask questions and receive assistance from PDE staff.

NEW USDE Transportation FAQs
USDE recently released additional guidance for LEAs on using ESSER funds to provide student transportation. The new FAQs include guidance on how ESSER funds can be used for transportation to and from afterschool and enrichment activities and how ESSER funds can be used to address bus driver shortages. Access the USDE guidance on ESSER funds for student transportation.

PDE Comments to USDE on Maintenance of Equity Proposed Requirements
In response to USDE's proposed requirement for the implementation of the Maintenance of Equity component of the ARP Act, PDE submitted public comments outlining concerns about the timing of the requirement, the validity of the data to be used for the calculation, and the inability of PDE to verify the accuracy of the data without a significant new data collection requirement. USDE will review public comments and will adjust the Maintenance of Equity requirements as necessary. Access PDE's public comments on the proposed ARP ESSER Maintenance of Equity requirement.

USDE Releases New ESSER Reporting Template
USDE released a proposed ESSER reporting template last summer, identifying the possible ESSER-related data collection relevant to LEAs and PDE. PDE submitted public comment on the initial proposal in late August 2021, focusing concerns on the scope and volume of data to be collected. Access USDE's responses to public comments submitted last summer.

USDE has since revised the proposed ESSER reporting template and is requesting public comments on this revision by November 29. LEAs can submit comments to USDE at Access the revised proposed USDE ESSER reporting template.

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