From Recovery to Thriving: How the American Rescue Plan is Supporting America’s Students

The Department of Education and the National Public Education Support Fund are excited to share the various commitments that the philanthropic and summer learning communities are standing up at the 2022 From Recovery to Thriving: How American Rescue Plan is Supporting America’s Students Summit!

We know it takes both public and private partnerships to support our students, communities and districts as they continue to leverage their federal funds in support of learning recovery, mental health, and addressing school labor shortages.

Thank you to all who are standing up for our students!

  • Supporting Learning Acceleration with American Rescue Plan Funds- PDF
  • Addressing the Teacher Shortage with American Rescue Plan Funds – PDF
  • Supporting the Mental Health Needs of All Students with American Rescue Plan FundsPDF
Opening Session: From Recovery to Thriving: How the Education Ecosystem Can Support America’s Students
Closing Remarks: Youth Spoken Word Artist, Ahmad Woodard, and US Deputy Secretary of Education, Cindy Marten
Learning Recovery Strategies
  • A deep dive into Community School Efforts in Boston and Batesville
  • Tutoring – A Key Strategy to Learning Recovery
  • Instructional Strategies to Support Learning Acceleration
  • Leveraging ARP to support equitable and effective Afterschool and Summer Learning Experiences

Addressing Labor Shortages Strategies
  • Grow Your Own & Support: Teachers and Counselors
  • Strategies to Address Staff Shortages

Mental Health Support Strategies
  • Comprehensive Mental Health Supports
  • Supporting Student Wellness and Mental Health
The philanthropic community has always been a key ally in meeting the challenges that face our communities and when our country was faced with the pandemic, they continued to ramp up and deepen support and resources for the urgent needs, offering technical assistance, capacity building, tools and resources in an effort to help districts leverage ARP funds to deepen impact over time.  Below are highlights from their commitments to our students, districts and families.
  • $17 million investment from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation for high-impact tutoring. The Gates Foundation is investing $17 million over the next four years (2022-2025) to foster learning acceleration through high-impact tutoring, building out tools and resources so state and district leaders can more easily identify, select and implement evidence-based tutoring programs.
  • $14.4 million in grants from the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation throughout 2022 to support afterschool across the country. Funding priorities include $7.5 million to support the 50 State Afterschool Network to ensure effective implementation of ARP funds, nearly $2 million to support increased capacity for statewide afterschool networks to reach out to local districts that need help implementing afterschool programs using ARP funds, over $2 million to support Mizzen, an innovative online tool that deliver high-quality content for afterschool programming, and $2.4 million to support the Afterschool Alliance, among other priorities.
  • $10 million investment from the Raikes Foundation to support organizations aimed at accelerating learning and expanding access to mental health supports. Raikes is investing to support the BELE Network, the Resource Equity Funders Collaborative focused on addressing inequities made worse by the pandemic, the Science of Learning and Development Alliance, and other organizations helping school districts to see, understand, and deploy resources to meet the unique needs of each and every student.
  • Over $9 million investment from the Stuart Foundation to support summer learning, learning recovery, educator workforce, and mental health initiatives. The Stuart Foundation has committed over $9 million to organizations that provide technical assistance to school districts in effectively utilizing ARP funds, implement and support the development of new community schools, and invest in student, family and community engagement to ensure students have the academic, summer, and mental health supports they need to recover.
  • $9 million investment from Overdeck Family Foundation to accelerate students’ academic recovery and address the teacher shortage. The Foundation invested over $7 million in grants to organizations to help students recover academically from the pandemic and $2 million in grants to help increase teacher retention efforts by scaling programs that are successful in retaining effective teachers, promote teacher diversity, and differentiate teacher roles.
  • $4.25 million investment from the William + Flora Hewlett Foundation to provide support and technical assistance to districts on how to effectively use ARP funds and sustain recovery efforts beyond the life of ARP. The Hewlett Foundation plans to invest $1.25 million to help districts plan on how to use ARP funds, over $2 million to stand up an Improvement Network focused on recovery and evaluating the impact of various recovery strategies, and $1 million to provide tools to districts to help them analyze and implement effective recovery strategies, among other investments.
  • $240,000 investment from the W. Clement and Jessie V. Stone Foundation to support projects to address the impacts of the pandemic on children, students and educators, and address inequities made worse by the pandemic. The Stone Foundation is investing tens of thousands of dollars in efforts to address the teacher shortage through bonuses and scholarships, improve access to mental health services for young men and boys of color, and create pathways for early childhood educators to access degrees and higher wages.
The American Rescue Plan requires at least $2.4B across all states to support high-quality afterschool and summer learning and enrichment programs through two set asides at the state level.  In addition, states may use the 5% set aside ($6.1B across all states) and districts may use their 20% set aside ($24.4B across all states) to address lost instructional time using evidence-based interventions which includes summer learning and enrichment and comprehensive afterschool programs.  Below is just a sampling of summer learning programming and supports from across the nation, leveraging ARP funds, as well as supporting implementation! New Grant Funding to Support School-Community Partnerships
  • The American Camp Association (ACA) and the National Summer Learning Association (NSLA) are launching a new camp-school partnership program to create ten new summer learning programs, in collaboration with ten public school districts, for low-income students as they prepare for the next school year. The camps will receive $25,000 grants and ask schools to match the camp financial contribution using their ARP funds. ACA and NSLA will provide camps and school districts with coaching, training, planning, convening and assessment support.
New tools to help families identify summer learning and enrichment opportunities for their children.
  • The National Summer Learning Association is launching an updated and a $3 million public service announcement (PSA) campaign to encourage families to identify summer learning and enrichment opportunities in their communities. The new and updated site will include over 30,000 summer learning and enrichment programs in a searchable database, many of which have been funded or expanded from American Rescue Plan funds.
  • National League of Cities will partner with Clear Channel Outdoor, the National Summer Learning Association, and the Afterschool Alliance to promote the importance of summer learning programs during National Summer Learning Week in July by showcasing summer learning messages across more than 1000 digital billboards across the nation.
  • National League of Cities will launch an effort to raise the visibility and celebrate National Summer Learning Week by challenging mayors and city councilmembers to issue mayoral proclamations, pass city council resolutions, and visit program sites to encourage media coverage of the great work summer programs do to support and enrich the lives of students and families.
New Technical Assistance offerings and Resources for States, Districts, Community Based          Organizations and Program Providers
  • The National Comprehensive Center launched a Community of Practice for State Teams focused on the “Strategic Use of Summer and Afterschool Set Asides.” This Community of Practice supports state teams and their partners who are working together to address individualized problems of practice related to accelerating learning through summer and out of school time (OST).  Using a continuous improvement approach, the Community of Practice provides a combination of live State team planning activities and off-line peer learning opportunities, as well as thought leadership from national leaders and experts. The goal of the Community of Practice is to provide State teams and their partners with an opportunity to solve high-priority problems of practice and build capacity for general problem-solving in the future. Participating states include Florida, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, Texas, Virginia, and Wyoming.
  • The Afterschool Alliance provides strategic support to the 50 state afterschool networks and additional allies and partners resulting in at least $2.75 billion dollars in ARP funds directed to quality afterschool and summer learning programs run by local school districts and their CBO partners to help address the equity and opportunity gaps.
  • The 2021-22 State Summer Learning Network is a two-year initiative launched March 2021 by the National Summer Learning Association (NSLA) and Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) to support state education agency leaders committed to implementing a broad vision for equity in summer learning – one that moves beyond remediation/credit recovery and engages more students and community partners to boost academic achievement, social and emotional learning goals while influencing teaching and learning throughout the year.  States participating in the SSLN include Alabama, Arizona, Michigan, New Jersey, Ohio, Oregon, Tennessee, Virginia, and Utah.
  • The District Summer Learning Network (DSLN), funded by The Wallace Foundation, provides coaching and technical assistance to 41 districts to help them design summer programs that nurture students’ social, emotional, and mental health needs while preparing them for academic success. Through DSLN, FHI 360 provides each participating district with professional development, individualized technical assistance, and an array of tools to build more effective summer learning programs. Partner districts are defining a transformative vision for summer programming using evidence-based practices that promote equity, community partnerships, and whole child development. We are launching a pilot initiative with SEAs, who will select 3-8 districts in their state to receive significant individualized support to develop and implement summer learning programs. Interested SEAs can learn more during an informational meeting on May 3, 2022 at 11:00 AM.
  • The National Center on Afterschool and Summer Enrichment (NCASE) is facilitating a five-part virtual Peer Learning Community on Strengthening Equity in Out-of-School Time System Building, for cross-sector teams from nine states (CO, NC, NE, NJ, NV, NY, OR, WI, WV) that are working to strengthen existing and build new out-of-school time (OST) systems with an equity focus. This is an opportunity for system planners to implement the American Rescue Plan Act funds designed to rebuild the early care and OST systems within states. Each state team is creating a system-level action plan through identifying priorities and policies based on data analysis that will close disparities in access to resources for children, families, and the workforce.  NCASE is a project of the Office of Child Care, Administration for Children and Families, U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. The goal of NCASE is to ensure that school-age children in working families of low income have increased access to high-quality afterschool and summer learning experiences that contribute to their overall development and academic achievement.
  • The Tactile Group, a federal contractor of the U.S. Department of Education under the Title IV-b, 21st Century Community Learning Centers program, works with ED to conduct monitoring and provide technical assistance to the state educational agencies (SEA) on various topics, including summer learning and enrichment, afterschool programming, coordination of funding sources, and other topics as needed.
  • EducationCounsel, in partnership with the Wallace Foundation, is developing a publication intended to help out-of-school time (OST) providers, district leaders, and state policymakers better understand the wide variety of federal funds that can be used to support the improvement, expansion, and delivery of high-quality summer and afterschool learning programs. Specifically, the publication employs a synthesized framework of the “critical elements” of summer and afterschool learning programs to map these elements (and their essential activities) to the allowable uses within 20 federal programs, ultimately providing a crosswalk and roadmap to inform how federal funds can be blended and braided together. The publication was informed reviewing research on evidence-based practices, and through conversations with several national, state, and local leaders. The publication is expected to be released later this spring and will be available on the Wallace Foundation website.
  • The National Comprehensive Center curated a new resource collection “Accelerating Learning Through Summer and OST.”  Understanding the challenge posed by an overwhelming amount of information related to summer and OST, National Comprehensive Center experts reviewed and organized a collection of over 40 summer and OST resources with ease-of-use in mind. Resources are curated and organized by the following topic areas: getting oriented, school-community partnerships, learning and enrichment strategies, attracting and supporting staff, addressing a range of student needs, student recruitment and attendance, and finance and budgeting. This resource collection is intended to reduce the burden on practitioners as they work on strategies, partnerships, and programs designed to accelerate learning. The resource collection can be found here.
  • EdResearch for Recovery released a brief last May on evidence-based summer learning programs to support districts engaged in summer planning. More recently, the initiative developed a series of facilitator’s materials that are designed to prompt key questions and discussions as districts work to implement evidence-based summer learning programs that can support a wide range of student social, emotional, and academic outcomes. These materials were produced in partnership with Tennessee SCORE and TNTP and are the product of action-planning sessions with districts in Tennessee and Rhode Island.
States, Cities, Districts and Programs are committing to serve exponentially more students     because of ARP Funds.
  • National League of Cities has collected examples of city-level investments from their ARPA State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds to support summer programming and will be working with partners to amplify these examples.
    1. The National League of Cities and the Afterschool Alliance, along with partners nationwide, are populating  an interactive map highlighting how districts and municipalities are investing in afterschool and summer programming using various ARP funding streams (ESSER, GEER, state dollars, and SLFR) as well as previous rounds of federal pandemic relief funds.
    2. National League of Cities has collected examples of city-level investments from their ARPA State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds to support summer programming and will be publishing a brief and blog to amplify these examples.
City Commitments collected by the National League of Cities
    • These programs will be hosted at 5 locations across the city and will provide project based and social/emotional learning opportunities, along with recreational activities
    • Those children who are most vulnerable can attend these programs for free
  • Baltimore, MD is allocating $8.4 million for the Youth Works summer youth employment program
    • The program will operate over the summer for 5 weeks, with youth working 5 hours per day
    • All Baltimore City youth ages 14-21 can apply
  • Champaign, IL city council is proposing that $261,000 of ARPA funds be invested into the Driven to Reach Excellence and Academic Achievement (DREAAM) Academy in an effort to curb gun violence in the city
    • The non-profit DREAAM Academy works to reduce achievement and opportunity gaps by providing pipeline programs to college, as well as mentoring and career opportunities
    • With this grant, DREAAM will expand to provide year-round free or low-cost programming for 100 youth as well as create a drill team to teach children about health and social emotional learning
  • Chicago, IL plans to invest $65 million into youth programs
    • this includes investing in the My Chi. My Future. database, which outlines all afterschool and summer programs available to Chicago youth
    • The city also plans to create and expand their programs connecting Chicago youth to early career opportunities
  • Chico, AZ has so far allocated $150,000 in grants to youth programs, including $75,000 to the Boys and Girls Club, $50,000 to the Salvation Army, $17,201 to a local nonprofit Girls on the Run, and  $7,799 to the local North State Composite Mountain Bike Team
    • However, the city has appropriated $500,000 in total for “children’s programs”
  • Cincinnati, OH allocated $30,000 for the SCLC Rites of Passage Summer Day Camp
    • The SCLC Rites of Passage Summer Day Camp is a community-based free summer camp for youth in the low-income neighborhood of Evanston, where 88.4% of children live at or below the poverty line
    • The Christ Temple Baptist Church served as the provider of this camp, which included educational enrichment opportunities
    • The camp served 30 youth over a 9-week program in 2021
  • Columbus, OH has allocated in total $15.6 million for summer youth engagement and anti-violence efforts
    • $800,000 of this will be allocated to the Columbus Recreation and Parks Department, much of which will be used to support nonprofit organizations that provide youth programming
    • An RFP process for the disbursement of these funds has already been completed
  • Lexington, KY has allocated $960,000 for a summer youth employment program
    • this money will be allocated over 2 years (FY23 and 24), with $360,000 being allocated each year, and the program expanding by $100,000 each year
  • Madison, WI is allocating $1.15 million in ARPA funds for the expansion of their summer youth employment program
    • Over Summer 2021 the city also utilized $120,00 in ARPA funding for a summer youth reengagement program which provided drop-in summer activities for youth in city parks
  • Memphis, TN will invest $2.8 million into summer internships and apprenticeships for youth
  • Milwaukee, WI is investing $3.8 million into their Earn and Learn Program
    • The Earn and Learn program is a summer youth employment program run by Milwaukee’s federally funded workforce development agency
    • The program provides direct work experience, professional development seminars, and skills workshops for disadvantaged youth ages 14-24
  • Phoenix, AX is investing $1 million into their College Depot Assistance Program, which provides students with access to laptops and Wi-Fi hotspots over the summer so that they can participate in online enrichment programs and continue their college applications
  • Washington, DC has allocated $2 million in ARPA funds for the expansion of city-run Boost Camps and the creation of Summer Plus camps. Both of these camps provide low-cost academic assistance and recreational activities for DC youth.
State Examples:
  • Afterschool for Children and Teens Now (ACT Now), the Illinois affiliate to the 50 state Afterschool Network, has begun an initiative to inform school districts across Illinois of the opportunity to partner with community-based organizations using ARP/ESSER III funding. Through targeted outreach to school districts with access to various funding streams, ACT Now has provided information and resources for school districts to supplement and further enrich their afterschool and out-of-school time programs. This includes a webinar and training series on how to partner with community-based organizations and how to start afterschool programs. In addition, ACT Now is offering one-on-one strategizing meetings between LEAs and ACT Now’s Afterschool Resources and Support Specialist for School Partnerships to brainstorm possible community partnerships, summer and OST program planning, and offer additional resources to support programmatic efforts.  For additional inquiries, or to set up a meeting with ACT Now, please reach out to Nikki Gillani.
  • Beyond School Bells, the Nebraska Afterschool Network, is strengthening existing and building new public-private partnerships to increase access to OST programming, especially for underserved rural communities. Through stimulus funding from both the Office of Child Care through the state Child Care and Development Fund Lead Agency (CARES) the NE Department of Health and Human Services, and from the NE Department of Education (American Rescue Plan), Beyond Schools Bells is helping to expand access to enriching afterschool and summer programming beyond the estimated 28,000 young people currently served by OST programs. Beyond School Bells, a program of the Nebraska Children and Families Foundation, will offer grants to summer program providers to supplement core learning with components that reflect youth interests and build skills. These grants will help youth thrive in the wake of COVID impacts, with the added support of local businesses, community-based organizations, and state and local government.
  • Texas Education Agency (TEA).  In June 2019, the passage of House Bill 3 by the 86th Texas Legislature added half-day formula funding for school systems that add up to 30 instructional days to any of their elementary schools starting in the 2020-2021 school year. This initiative is called Additional Days School Year (ADSY). Funding for ADSY is available to campuses that meet a specific set of requirements. The ADSY Planning and Execution Program (PEP) Voluntary Summer Learning grant (ADSY PEP Summer) allows LEAs to take part in a four-year grant where they receive grant funds in exchange for planning and executing a high-quality summer learning program. TEA is using funds from the American Rescue Plan to provide ADSY PEP Summer LEAs with additional resources to plan their research-based summer program aligned to RAND research and the National Summer Learning Project evidence base. The 2020-2021 ADSY PEP summer cohort included 5 districts serving 770 students.  In the 2022-2023 school year TEA will have nearly 70 LEAs participating in the ADSY PEP Summer grant serving more than 40,000 public school students across Texas. The Wallace Foundation provides funding for ADSY PEP Summer LEAs to partner with a technical assistance provider to help plan their high-quality summer program. The Wallace Foundation also provides funding for ADSY PEP Summer LEAs to hire a project manager to manage the planning and execution of the ADSY PEP Summer grant. ADSY PEP Summer LEAs participate in a year-round learning community where the LEA project managers attend trainings and workshops to learn best practices for planning a high-quality summer program. The LEAs also participate in breakout sessions with LEAs of similar sizes so that they can be exposed to best practices for LEAs in comparable situations.
District Examples:
  • Bloomington School District 87 is planning to run a summer enrichment program using their ESSER III funding in collaboration with several different CBOs in their area. Their district has formed a “Community Educator” group with over 30 organizations represented in which they troubleshoot and idea share and have planned this program within that group. The day-long program will run through the summer and engage a more structured academic approach during the day, utilizing school day teachers, and then transition to “informal” learning opportunities facilitated by community partners in the afternoon. Each community organization (i.e., the Children’s Discovery Museum, Illinois State University for Math and Science, local Boys & Girls Clubs, etc.) will be assigned a specific grade to work with throughout the program.
  • Evolve502, originally formed in 2018 based on the Say Yes to Education model, providing all Jefferson County Public Schools (JCPS – the largest school system in KY with 95K+ students, 67% free and reduced lunch) graduates the opportunity for a tuition-free two-year college degree, has also been working diligently throughout the duration of the pandemic to partner with JCPS to connect at-risk students with the necessary support and resources within the community. This work has included being the advocate and intermediary for more than $7.5 million in CARES Act dollars and ESSER funds ($750K in CARES Act through Louisville Metro Government and the remaining through JCPS’s ESSER funding), beginning in April of 2020.   By partnering with more than 70 community-based organizations (primarily out-of-school time providers) as “community learning hubs” during non-traditional instruction during the school year (and moving to after school once schools returned to fully in-person in August of 2021) as well as the summer months, Louisville’s community organizations have received additional staffing (teachers, substitute teachers, college students) and funding support and thousands of students have received aligned curriculum, intensive tutoring, mental health support, technology resources, enrichment opportunities, nutritious food, and a safe environment throughout traumatic and challenging times.  This work has been truly instrumental in building the foundational and structural pieces for continued community-wide collaboration and ensuring that students most in need have the adequate supports to be successful academically and social-emotionally.
  • In Spring 2021, Great Public Schools Now (GPSN) launched the LA Education Recovery Fund (Education Recovery Fund), a collective philanthropic effort that directs urgently needed resources to Los Angeles students to help them overcome the unprecedented educational, mental health and social impacts of the pandemic. The Education Recovery Fund’s primary effort in 2021 was its Summer of Joy initiative, which was a partnership with Los Angeles Unified, over 70 nonprofit organizations, and philanthropists to provide children in every Los Angeles low-income community the opportunity to access free in-person summer programs. As a result, 34,595 students across 737 sites experienced a summer of joy after a historic year of isolation. GPSN funded nonprofit organizations such as LA’s BEST, Woodcraft Rangers, and After-School All Stars to run full-day enrichment programs on district sites that offered students the opportunity to engage in art, STEM, music, and sports. These programs emphasized social-emotional support to help address the mental health challenges from the pandemic. GPSN also funded organizations like the Natural History Museum of LA County, Roundhouse Aquarium, and P.S. Arts to bring their engaging programs to district campuses. Los Angeles Unified opened over 500 of its Title 1 elementary and middle school campuses for in-person summer programs and invested significant funding (including ARP funds) and notable additional resources from its Beyond the Bell (after-school and summer enrichment) department. The Education Recovery Fund invested a total of $7.1 million across 72 nonprofits to run programs on district, charter, and nonprofit sites. For Summer 2022, partners are working together to leverage public and private funds to provide even more students with access to academic and enrichment programs. We expect our summer collaboration to continue annually to ensure every student can recover and thrive post-pandemic and beyond.
  • Madison (WI) Out-of-School Time, currently serving 16,000 students -through their network of community-based partners- in the Madison metro area with afterschool and summer programming, is using district-level, municipal level and state level funds from the American Rescue Plan – leveraged with other private and public local sources – to increase equitable access to high-quality out of school time programming.  In partnership with community-based organizations who provide culturally relevant OST programming in their neighborhoods, Madison Out-of-School Time is ensuring that more students have access to these opportunities for learning, community engagement, and fun, so that young people can develop to their full potential.
Program Examples:
  • Breakthrough Houston: Houston Independent School District will grant Breakthrough Houston $200,000 of its ESSER allocation to support Breakthrough’s summer and school year program that serves over 600 students in the Houston community.
  • Breakthrough Atlanta: The Georgia Statewide Afterschool Network is administering funds from the Georgia Department of Education via the Building Opportunities in Out-of-School-Time grants program made available through the American Rescue Plan. Breakthrough Atlanta will be awarded $96,500 per year for three fiscal years on a reimbursement basis, beginning in summer 2022. Funds will support Breakthrough Atlanta’s summer program and specifically, 10 Teaching Fellows, meals for 120 students, and 8 bus drivers annually.
  • Camp EDMO, a California based program dedicated to making equitable high-quality STEAM and SEL programs accessible to all communities, has experienced a 250% growth in district partnerships for Summer 2022 and are planning to serve 180% more students (more than 6,000 up from 2,500 in 2019). They are also projected up to 1000% growth in after school programs for the Fall (they project serving 1,200 students in Fall 2022 up from 185 students in Fall 2021).  Their expansion includes working with rural and traditionally underserved districts where they will be providing summer and/or after school services to about 3,500 students.
  • Generation Teach is committed to ending racial injustice and inequity in education. Generation Teach co-creates loving communities where generations of students, teachers, and leaders learn, grow, and develop. Operating in Colorado, Rhode Island, and Massachusetts, Generation Teach provides high-quality summer learning programs for elementary- and middle-school students, AmeriCorps Summer Teaching Fellowships for undergraduate and high-school students, and multi-month leadership residencies for professional teachers. Generation Teach is a 2018 National Summer Learning Association Award Winner and is in the process of preparing to serve 1,850 students this summer, which is an 80% increase, as a result of American Rescue Plan funds.