ARP ESSER III
American Rescue Plan Act
Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ARP ESSER III)
On March 11, 2021, the American Rescue Plan (ARP) Act was signed into law. In it, the U.S. Department of Education is providing an additional $121.9 billion for the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund (ARP ESSER Fund). This legislation awards grants to state educational agencies for providing school districts with emergency relief funds to address the impact of COVID-19.
Florida will receive $6,339,033,137 in ARP ESSER funds from the ARP Act, with 90 percent being awarded to school districts. The remaining funds will be used for state-level activities to address issues caused by COVID-19.
The School District of Manatee County (SDMC) will receive $88,870,732.
Part I: Implementation Plan
Activity 1 - Addressing Learning Loss (at least 20% of total allocation).
Of the total amount allocated to an LEA, the LEA must reserve at least 20 percent of funds to address learning loss through the implementation of evidence-based interventions such as summer learning or summer enrichment, extended day, comprehensive afterschool programs, or extended school year programs, and ensure that those interventions respond to students’ social, emotional, and academic needs and address the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on underrepresented student subgroups (each major racial and ethnic group, children from low-income families, children with disabilities, English learners, gender, migrant students, students experiencing homelessness, and children and youth in foster care).
The School District of Manatee County (SDMC)’s mission is to educate and develop students for success. Located in an area experiencing exponential growth, the district evaluates its student population, services, location of its programs, and capacity on a regular basis. To this effort, SDMC proactively develops strategies and interventions that will meet the needs of all of its students – especially those who are underserved or at-risk. Of its nearly 52,000 students, 54.6% identify as a minority, 57.7% are eligible for free or reduced lunch, 15.9% students with exceptionalities (non-gifted) and 11.6% are English Language Learners.
The background knowledge of its students and rich history of serving this community is what buoyed SDMC’s efforts as administration, staff and teachers quickly reinvented the delivery of education to ensure that students could stay on track to meet critical benchmarks. These actions went beyond pivoting to online learning, providing technology and digital access throughout the county, and ensuring that no child went hungry. However, even with this monumental effort, the impact of the pandemic highlighted gaps in services and areas of need that were especially true for Manatee’s underserved, disadvantaged and underrepresented student subgroups.
ARP ESSER funds will be used to provide effective and efficient instruction and services for disadvantaged and underrepresented students as well as additional support to address tiered academic support.
These evidence-based interventions will extend learning during the school day, after school and summer months with innovative and engaging programming.
Third Grade Reading Academy
Stronger Learning Environments
Professional Development Supporting the Reimagine Academy Program
Volunteer Pre-Kindergarten Summer Booster
Diagnostic Assessment for PreK – 12th Grade
Districtwide Gifted Screening
Leading, Teaching and Learning
Activity 2(A) - Any activity authorized by the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965.
ESEA supports equitable primary and secondary education with funds authorized for professional development, instructional materials, resources to support educational programs, and the promotion of parental involvement. ESEA encompasses a number of Title Programs that guide the School District of Manatee County (SDMC)’s work and required direction of its resources. Specific activities funded through this application are noted in the following ARP ESSER Fund LEA Plan details and include Title I, C Migrant Education, Title III, Title IV, and Title IX. This plan includes a number of activities that can be tied to ESEA including Activity 2(M).
Activity 2(B) Any activity authorized by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act.
To meet the needs of its most fragile students, the School District of Manatee County (SDMC) aligns to IDEA, which “ensures that all children with disabilities are entitled to a free appropriate public education to meet their unique needs and prepare them for further education, employment and independent living.” Specific activities funded by ARP ESSER are noted in the following plan, including Activity 2(F).
Activity 2(C) Any activity authorized by the Adult Education and Family Literacy Act.
The School District of Manatee County (SDMC) offers programs to support students who have aged-out of school with GED support and career counseling. The Manatee Technical College also offers a wealth of programs that support adult learners. Specific activities funded by ARP ESSER are noted in the following plan, including Activity 2(F).
Activity 2(D) Any activity authorized by the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act of 2006.
To expand student knowledge and access to fields supported by career and technical education, Manatee is developing an interactive field exploration tours program for students in 4th grade through 8th grade. Students will travel to the Manatee Technical College (MTC) and participate in guided tours of 16 career clusters that are offered on campus. Students will interview current career technical students, instructors, and program directors to learn about the opportunities and requirements for careers in this area. Lesson plans and activities will be aligned to the B.E.S.T. Standards. MTC will provide lessons and activities that will be developmentally appropriate for each grade level. It is expected that 40 school sites will engage these career exploration activities. Note that the cost for transportation is included within this proposal.
Activity 2(E) Coordination of preparedness and response efforts of local educational agencies with State, local, Tribal, and territorial public health departments, and other relevant agencies, to improve coordinated responses among such entities to prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus.
Through a coordinated comprehensive and strategic plan, the school district leveraged its existing partnerships with local agencies, such as the Manatee County Health Department, to implement procedures and protocol critical for student and staff safety. Moving forward, the school district continues to evaluate its plan regarding the processes and outcomes of each activity.
Additionally, through ARP ESSER funds, the district will take actions to further improve the coordination of preparedness and response efforts through the implementation of the SNAP Health Center. This web-based system will manage student health data that is critical to pinpointing possible COVID-19 outbreaks and will connect the efforts of school nurses to district personnel to the Health Department. This information is included under Activity 2(G).
Activity 2(F) Activities to address the unique needs of low-income children or students, children with disabilities, English learners, racial and ethnic minorities, students experiencing homelessness, and foster care youth, including how outreach and service delivery will meet the needs of each population.
Serving nearly 52,000 students district wide, the School District of Manatee County (SDMC) employs a vast array of strategies, services, and activities to meet the needs of this community’s most at-risk population to include students who are disadvantaged, impoverished, homeless, English language learners or enrolled in Exceptional Student Education. The need for culturally appropriate and impactful outreach and service delivery is critical as more than half of SDMC’s students identify as a minority, 11.6% are English Language Learners – a percentage that has demonstrated steady growth, and 15.9% are students with varying exceptionalities. With the assistance of ARP ESSER, SDMC can create, support, and expand services that will impact the lives of this district’s most at-risk and underserved students.
Addressing Learning Loss for Underrepresented Students
At-Risk Students: Mentoring and Objective Reflection & Restorative Education (MORRE) Program
Career Advisory & Readiness Training (CART) Program
Low-Income Emergent Learners: Soar In 4
Students Experiencing Homelessness
Activity 2(G) Developing and implementing procedures and systems to improve the preparedness and response efforts of local educational agencies.
Over the past two years, the School District of Manatee County (SDMC) has worked tirelessly to respond strategically to the COVID-19 crisis through a coordinated effort that included local agencies, the community at-large, local business owners, and stakeholders.
As part of this effort, Manatee’s school clinics have developed procedures consistent with the CDC and Florida Department of Health guidelines to protect students and staff during the COVID-19 emergency. The district also increased communication efforts through a number of channels to students, staff and families with messages aligning to CDC guidelines. An online COVID-19 CASES DASHBOARD was created that listed the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases that directly impacted the schools and district facilities. SDMC updates this page as needed based on information received from the Florida Department of Health. ARP ESSER funds will specifically support the following:
Activity 2(H) Training and professional development for staff of the local educational agency on sanitation and minimizing the spread of infectious diseases.
The School District of Manatee County (SDMC) provides a robust professional development program to its teachers and staff. Regarding COVID-19 and sanitation, ARP ESSER funds will support the training of its custodial staff. A qualified trainer will provide onsite professional development focusing on new cleaning techniques that will minimize the spread of infectious diseases and align to CDC guidelines. SDMC’s custodians will receive overtime so that training can occur outside normal work hours so as not to disrupt the current workload.
Activity 2(I) Purchasing supplies to sanitize and clean the facilities of a local educational agency, including buildings operated by such agency.
To ensure that learning environments are clean and safe, the School District of Manatee County (SDMC) has earmarked ARP ESSER funds to support the purchasing/reimbursement of supplies to clean and sanitize the district’s school sites and buildings. SDMC will align to CDC guidelines and any other protocol when selecting sanitation supplies.
Activity 2(J) Planning for, coordinating, and implementing activities during long-term closures, including providing meals to eligible students, providing technology for online learning to all students, providing guidance for carrying out requirements under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and ensuring other educational services can continue to be provided consistent with all Federal, State, and local requirements.
Funded by braiding a number of federal programs and funding sources, the School District of Manatee County (SDMC) has the means to employ a vast array of strategies, services, and activities to meet the comprehensive needs of this community’s most at-risk population to include students who are disadvantaged, impoverished, homeless, English language learners or enrolled in Exceptional Student Education. Throughout the school closures due to COVID-19, the school district’s Food and Nutrition Department ensured that meals were disseminated at central locations (including school sites) so that no child went hungry. These activities have been recorded and compiled to serve as a roadmap to address future challenges.
During the height of the pandemic and beyond, the district’s Information Technology Services Department also worked to provide hotspots throughout the county, laptop computers, and other means of technology to promote a seamless transition to online learning. The school district continues to take steps to support online learning for all students – especially those in underserved and/or disadvantaged areas of the community.
To ensure that curricula are relevant, standards-based, and aligns with the needs of students, ARP ESSER funds support textbook adoption efforts.
Additional activities, not specifically tied to Activity 2(J), are reflected throughout SDMC’s comprehensive plan to include professional development, technology, staff liaisons and more.
Activity 2(K) Purchasing educational technology (including hardware, software, and connectivity) for students who are served by the local educational agency that aids in regular and substantive educational interaction between students and their classroom instructors, including low-income students and children with disabilities, which may include assistive technology or adaptive equipment.
The School District of Manatee County (SDMC) will earmark new ESSER funds to support 21st century learning throughout the district through educational software and overall connectivity.
Activity 2(L) Providing mental health services and supports, including through the implementation of evidence-based full-service community schools.
According to a report by the U.S. Department of Education Office for Civil Rights, one of its 11 observations on the impact of COVID-19 indicated that “Nearly all students have experienced some challenges to their mental health and well-being during the pandemic and many have lost access to school-based services and supports, with early research showing disparities based on race, ethnicity, LGBTQ+ identity, and other factors.” “… nearly three in ten parents surveyed in a Gallup poll said their child was experiencing harm to [their] emotional or mental health with 45% citing the separation from teachers and classmates as a major challenge.
The school district’s Department of Student Services provides a wealth of services designed to mitigate risk factors facing today’s students including teams of School Counselors, Social Workers and Graduation Enhancement Technicians. Additionally, at the school sites, this department implements the Mental Health Awareness Education Plan, which integrates five hours of mental health education into grades 6-12 utilizing Sandy Hook Promise Start with Hello and other materials. SDMC also enjoys robust partnerships with local service agencies including providers of mental health. These agencies support students with referrals, outreach, and relevant information. ESSER ARP funds will continue to support the important work of the school district’s team of Social Workers and School Counselors who will assist in addressing the mental health needs of Manatee County’s students.
Lastly, Youth Mental Health First Aid is mandatory for every school district employee. This daylong education program provides information on the unique risk factors and warning signs of mental health problems in adolescents, builds understanding of the importance of early intervention, and teaches individuals how to help youth in crisis or experiencing a mental health challenge.
Activity 2(M) Planning and implementing activities related to summer learning and supplemental afterschool programs, including providing classroom instruction or online learning during the summer months and addressing the needs of low-income students, children with disabilities, English learners, migrant students, students experiencing homelessness, and children in foster care.
 Valerie J. Calderon, U.S. Parents Say COVID-19 Harming Child's Mental Health, GALLUP (June 16, 2020), https://news.gallup.com/poll/312605/parents-say-covid-harming-child-mental-health.aspx.
Activity 2(N) Addressing learning loss among students, including low-income students, children with disabilities, English learners, racial and ethnic minorities, students experiencing homelessness, and children and youth in foster care, of the local educational agency, including by—
The School District of Manatee County implements a number of interventions and strategies to address learning loss, especially among its most underserved student populations.
Manatee County’s students learning English as a Second Language (ELL) are categorically underperforming on standardized testing across the district when compared to their Non-ELL peers. ARP ESSE funds will be used to address these gaps with activities such as (1) Provide educational materials to support newcomer ELLs and Secondary ELLS and address gaps in fundamental educational skills.
(i) administering and using high-quality assessments that are valid and reliable, to accurately assess students’ academic progress and assist educators in meeting students’ academic needs, including through differentiating instruction: Manatee’s ARP ESSER plan specifically ties to the following:
(2) High-quality Assessments: Although 10th grade students did not have the opportunity to take the 10th grade Reading FSA during the 2019/2020 school year, those students are still responsible for passing the reading portion of the FSA or receive a concordant score from the SAT or ACT to graduate. Many of the students in question are struggling readers who are assigned to an intensive reading course and need support preparing for these assessments. SDMC proposes to use the Princeton Review SAT Premium Preparation 2021 Guide and the Official ACT Preparation Guide as both provide practice tests and proven techniques to support teachers and students as they prepare for the SAT or ACT in an effort to achieve a concordant reading score to meet graduation requirements. These guides will be distributed across schools to be utilized as class sets in a grades 11 and 12 intensive reading classrooms.
Diagnostic Assessments for Pre-Kindergarten through 12th Grade: SDMC will align with State mandates as to what assessment to use for progress monitoring. To this effort, SDMC will plan for the selection of meaningful and research-based diagnostic tools that can be used for all students.
Early Learning Registrar: To ensure that this communities’ youngest students have access to school and are properly placed on the appropriate academic pathway to success.
(ii) implementing evidence-based activities to meet the comprehensive needs of students. Delivering Evidence-based Activities:
(3) The school district’s plan continues the use of several standards-aligned, evidence-based programs such as ACALETICS® Math Program. Research-based, supplemental programming, ACALETICS is proven to increase learning skills through engaging activities in which students set and then exceed individual goals. Also included, World Book is a comprehensive suite of e-learning resources that is crafted for all ages and abilities with articles, videos, educator tools, eBooks, and research guides to drive learning.
To address learning loss and an apparent gap in foundational reading skills due to COVID-19, the School District of Manatee County (SDMC), will also employ a number of positions to provide intensive reading support at the middle and high school levels. These positions will be responsible for assisting with facilitating small group, direct instruction to address these gaps in learning and help provide a stronger learning environment. The following critical positions have also been included within this proposal to deliver evidence-based interventions and activities including a Secondary ELA Specialist, Secondary Reading Specialist, and additional middle school Reading Coaches.
(iii) providing information and assistance to parents and families on how they can effectively support students, including in a distance learning environment:
SDMC leverages a number of resources to grow its teacher-family relationship in an effort to foster learning at home. To provide information and assistance regarding critical supports, services, and opportunities, SDMC employs a team of School Counselors, Social Workers and liaisons who serve as advocates for Manatee’s underrepresented students.
(4) MTSS Representatives: To ensure that the continuity of services is maintained by a strong and successful teaching staff, ARP ESSER funds will specifically support a MTSS supplement for every MTSS representative at Manatee’s elementary and middle schools. The MTSS representative is key ensuring that their school environment embeds core Social Emotional Learning strategies critical to a safe and successful learning environment.
Parents as Teachers: Soar in 4 is Manatee County’s monthly movement to ensure all early learners and their families have the opportunities and support they need for success in preschool, school and beyond. Soar in 4 partners with 20 agencies who will provide interactive and standards-based learning engagements in after school programs at each of Manatee’s Title I schools throughout the year, to include Mote Marine, Ringling College, Ringling Museum, The Bishop and more. Additional information is included under Activity 2(F).
(5) To ensure that curricula are relevant, standards-based, and align with this district’s high standards, ARP ESSER funds support textbook adoption efforts.
(iv) tracking student attendance and improving student engagement in distance education:
In the Spring of 2020, the School District of Manatee County (SDMC) crafted an instructional continuity plan (SDMC/ICP) to address the transition of schools from brick and mortar to a virtual platform in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The three main components of this plan focused on access to mobile devices, access to internet, and standards-based content delivery.
To improve student engagement in distance education, Schoology was disseminated as the virtual platform due to its ability to provide personalized experiences as well as a number of opportunities to participate in online tasks and discussions in a very engaging way.
To further improve the district’s distance education, SDMC has designated a Project Manager to oversee, facilitate and assist with implementation of the ICP, additional professional development using the Schoology platform and I-Ready to increase teacher efficacy in asynchronous teaching. Moving forward, SDMC will align the prescribed format of the State’s ICP plan once it is released. Planning and revisions will be adjusted and aligned accordingly.
(6) Dual Language to Close Achievement Gap: In an effort to close this achievement gap, SDMC has piloted a dual language program that began with a select group of Kindergarteners at a Title I elementary school. Aligning to the 50:50 two-way immersion mode and research-based, this program has flourished to include grades Kindergarten through second and has expanded to two other elementary schools. In the next year, the program will expand by a grade level at each of the Dual Language Programs and add an additional elementary school.
The overarching goal of the SDMC Dual Language Program is to improve English language acquisition among emergent ELL learners, and academic achievement in reading among all emergent learners. In order to increase skill and achievement, the Dual Language Instructors will employ classroom strategies daily to promote language development including explicit and systematic instruction in vocabulary, exposure to rich language input, structured classroom space and routine to provide scaffolding, and encourage language development in the home front.
As participation in this program is voluntary and each student’s parent/guardian has agreed to their child’s placement along with homework requirements. These classes will receive rich support from the school district’s ELL Instructional Support Leader, Curriculum and Professional Learning Coaches, and English Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) staff. It is expected that by June 30, 2021, the percentage of students in the ELL subgroup who score a Composite Proficiency level score of 4.0 and a minimum proficiency of 4.0 in the reading domain on ACCESS, will increase by 5% as compared to other ELLs in Kindergarten not enrolled in a Dual Language program.
In order to evaluate the project and determine academic increases, specific data from ACCESS, iReady diagnostics, and classroom assessments will be collected, synthesized, and analyzed by the ELL Instructional Support Leader, Dual Language Program Teacher(s), district staff and the school district’s Assessment and Accountability Department. Evaluation of process and implementation will be ongoing as the evaluation information is critical for continued expansion of a successful model program.
During this time of growth, the community, students, and schools were severely impacted by COVID-19. Moving forward, ESSER APR funding will support a Dual Language Specialist who will be fully dedicated to the growing dual language programs and assist the Dual Language Teachers with planning, modeling, and providing training. This will specifically assist the schools and grade levels that were added during the pandemic. Funds will also support items needed to implement evidence-based activities including content area dictionaries, libraries to include authentic Spanish text for English Language Learners learning to read and write in both English and Spanish, and headphones for English Language Learners using Imagine Learning to reinforce foundational reading skills.
Activity 2(O) School facility repairs and improvements to enable operation of schools to reduce risk of virus transmission and exposure to environmental health hazards, and to support student health needs.
While the School District of Manatee County (SDMC)’s operations and maintenance teams work tirelessly to ensure that school sites are sanitized and free of environmental health hazards, funds have not been specifically tied to this activity.
Activity 2(P) Inspection, testing, maintenance, repair, replacement, and upgrade projects to improve the indoor air quality in school facilities, including mechanical and nonmechanical heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems, filtering, purification and other air cleaning, fans, control systems, and window and door repair and replacement.
(1) ARP ESSER funds will be dedicated to activities to improve indoor air quality such as ventilation through fans, dehumidifiers, and additional equipment.
Activity 2(Q) Developing strategies and implementing public health protocols including, to the greatest extent possible and not inconsistent with state law, policies in line with guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for the reopening and operation of school facilities to effectively maintain the health and safety of students, educators, and other staff.
The School District of Manatee County (SDMC) aligns its strategies and protocols to the guidance put forth by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Florida Department of Health in Manatee County, and any Executive Orders. SDMC continues to publicly disseminate accurate information regarding COVID-19 prevention measures using an integrated social media strategy, as well as print, leveraging the talent of its Communications, Family & Community Engagement Department. COVID-19 information is updated under Hot Topics on the SDMC’s main webpage and includes testing sites. Funds from ARP ESSER have not been specifically tied to this activity.
Activity 2(R) Other activities that are necessary to maintain the operation of and continuity of services in local educational agencies and continuing to employ existing staff of the local educational agency.
To maintain the operation and continuity of services, the School District of Manatee County (SDMC) will direct ARP ESSER funds to balance budget expenses in several areas that were critically impacted due to COVID-19. Specific activities to be funded:
Activity 2 (S) Administration. LEAs may take reasonable and necessary administrative costs, to include direct and indirect costs. Indirect costs may be taken up to the negotiated, unrestricted indirect cost rate. However, to ensure that the total administrative costs are reasonable, the total direct and indirect costs may not exceed five percent (5%) of the LEA’s total award.
The School District of Manatee County (SDMC) has thoughtfully crafted a budget that is reasonable, necessary, allowable, and allocable to support the ambitious activities put forth in the ARP ESSER Fund LEA Plan. To this effort, five percent of the total award will be used toward administrative and indirect costs to support the district’s capacity.
Part II: Ensuring Effectiveness of Interventions
Please describe how the LEA will ensure that the interventions it implements, including but not limited to the interventions under section 2001(e)(1) of the ARP Act to address the academic impact of lost instructional time, will respond to the academic, social, emotional, and mental health needs of all students, and particularly those students disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, including students from low-income families, students of color, English learners, children with disabilities, students experiencing homelessness, children and youth in foster care, and migratory students. In your response, please include a description of interventions and strategies that are aligned to the LEA’s data (disaggregated by subgroup) and describe how the LEA will measure the effectiveness of the selected interventions.
In crafting the School District of Manatee County’s (SDMC) Local Educational Agency ARP ESSER Plan, administration, staff, and stakeholders assessed the critical needs and learning gaps of this community’s students and families that were either kindled or fueled with the onset of COVID-19. To this effort, a number of supports and interventions were included in this plan to address the academic, social, emotional, and mental health needs of all students with emphasis on those who are typically underserved.
The following data helped drive the proposed plan: 2020-21 FSA English Language Arts data reports that 50.2% of students grades 3-10 scored a level 3 or higher; slightly lower than 2018-19, which was 51.9%. However, achievement drops as one takes a deeper dive: English Language Learners (ELL) 9.9% versus 55.8% non-ELL, 36.9% of students with low socioeconomic status (SES) versus 62.6% non-SES; and 20.8% of Students with Disabilities (SWD) versus 55.3% of Non-SWD.
FSA Mathematics data reports that 55.3% of students grades 3-10 scored a level 3 or higher; lower than 2018-19 (58.2%). Subgroup information: English Language Learners (ELL) 26.7% versus 60.1% non-ELL, 44.8% of students with low socioeconomic status (SES) versus 66.4% non-SES; and 30.5% of Students with Disabilities (SWD) versus 60.3% of Non-SWD.
To address student achievement and the overall academic impact of lost instructional time, SDMC included a number of supports critical to fostering effective leading and teaching. As capacity is built among Manatee’s teachers – especially those serving high needs students – it is expected that academic performance will increase. As this district transitions to and implements the Florida Benchmarks for Excellent Student Thinking (B.E.S.T.) Standards for ELA and Math, funds allocated through ARP ESSER will continue to support robust and intensive professional development and training. Continuous trainings for K-12 teachers are critical to the implementation of these standards with fidelity. Additionally, professional development is paramount for teachers to effectively build student proficiency, understand how to use benchmark data, and provide impactful remediation when needed.
Further complementing this work, the school district intends to employ a number of assessments that are approved by the FLDOE to provide a foundation for data-informed instruction. Nearpod was included in the budget as it utilizes formative assessments and includes adaptive instruction in real time to drive personalized learning.
According to research, differentiating instruction can occur through content, process, product and/or learning environment. To support students needing to process learning through more intensive support, funds will allow for the placement of Intensive Reading/Math Remediation Teachers within the school sites most in need. Additionally, paraprofessionals will be hired to specifically provide reading support to underperforming middle school students.
Interventions for students with disabilities include a comprehensive extended learning program with transportation to ensure equal access to programming. Funds will also continue to support services to English Language Learners, homelessness, children and youth in foster care, and migratory students.
Part III: LEA Plan for Safe Return of In-Person Instruction
Each LEA developed and made publicly available on the LEA’s website a plan for the safe return of in-person learning in the Fall of 2020. This was before the enactment of the ARP Act. This plan must be updated to address the requirements of the U.S. Department of Education’s Interim Final Rule, 88 FR 21195. The Interim Final Rule “does not mandate that an LEA adopt the CDC guidance, but only requires that the LEA describe in its plan the extent to which it has adopted the key prevention and mitigation strategies identified in the guidance.” 88 FR at 21200. Any updated LEA plan must be consistent with state law, including any applicable executive order, any agency emergency order, or any agency regulation or rule. Note specifically that LEA policies must comply with section 381.00316, Florida Statutes, and that any policies implemented after August 9, 2021 must comply with Florida Department of Health Rule 64DER21 -12, F.A.C., and any policies implemented after September 22, 2021 must comply with Florida Department of Health Rule 64DER21-15, F.A.C.
Each LEA must seek public comment on the plan and take such comments into account prior to submission of the final plan to the Department within 60 days of the award. Upon the Department’s approval, the LEA shall post this updated plan on the LEA’s website within 90 days of the award.
☒ By checking this box, the LEA acknowledges the requirement that each LEA shall update its Plan for Safe Return of In-Person Instruction to reflect the requirements stated above, shall seek public comment on the updated plan and take such comments into account prior to the submission of the final plan to the Department within 60 days of the award. Upon the Department’s approval, the LEA shall post this updated plan on the LEA’s website within 90 days of the award.
Part IV: Assurances
The district must agree to ALL of the assurances by checking the corresponding boxes.
☒ Assurance 1: LEA Periodic Plan Update with Public Comment. As required in the U.S. Department of Education’s Interim Final Rule, 88 FR 21195, the LEA must regularly, but no less frequently than every six months, review and as appropriate, revise its plan for the safe return to in-person instruction and continuity of services. In determining whether revisions are necessary, and in making any revisions, the LEA must seek public input and take such input into account. If at the time the LEA revises its plan the CDC has updated its guidance on reopening schools, the revised plan must address the extent to which the LEA has adopted policies, and describe any policies, for each of the updated safety recommendations. Significantly, the Interim Final Rule “does not mandate that the LEA adopt the CDC guidance, but only requires that the LEA describe in its plan the extent to which it has adopted the key prevention and mitigation strategies identified in the guidance.” 88 FR at 21200. Any updated LEA plan must be consistent with state law, including any applicable executive order, any agency emergency order, or any agency regulation or rule. Specifically, LEA policies must comply with section 381.00316, Florida Statutes, and any policies implemented after August 9, 2021 must comply with Florida Department of Health Rule 64DER21 -12, F.A.C., and any policies implemented after September 22, 2021 must comply with Florida Department of Health Rule 64DER21-15, F.A.C.
☒ Assurance 2: Continue progress monitoring and interventions. The district agrees to provide robust progress monitoring and requisite interventions must be extended to all students with tiered support for students who are performing below grade level and are not making adequate progress. Students who are receiving instruction through innovative teaching methods must transition to another teaching method if they fail to make adequate progress. The district agrees to provide monthly progress monitoring reports to parent/guardians for students identified as performing below grade level and/or demonstrating decline on the district’s progress monitoring system.
☒ Assurance 3: Allowable Uses of Funds. The LEA will use funds for activities allowable under section 2001(e) of the CRRSA Act.
☒ Assurance 4: Maintenance of Equity. The LEA will comply with all requirements relating to Maintenance of Equity, in accordance with section 2004(c) of the ARP Act.
☒ Assurance 5: Reporting. The LEA will comply with all reporting requirements and submit required reports to the Florida Department of Education at such time and in such manner and containing such information as the department may subsequently require.
☒ Assurance 6: Audits, Inspections or Examinations. The LEA will cooperate with any examination of records with respect to such funds by making records available for inspection, production, and examination, and authorized individuals available for interview and examination, upon the request of (i) the Florida Department of Education, the Florida Auditor General; (ii) the Department and/or its Inspector General; or (iii) any other federal or state agency, commission, or department in the lawful exercise of its jurisdiction and authority.
Local Educational Agency Chief Executive Officer or Authorized Representative
Name and title of person responsible for completion and submission:
Cynthia Saunders, Superintendent
(941) 708-8770 x41220
Superintendent signature (or authorized representative)