Thanks to the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) Fund, Aurora Public Schools is slated to receive $77 million in additional funding over the next three school years. These funds are one-time dollars designed to maximize in-person instructional time for all students, address lost instructional time due to the pandemic and serve students who have been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic.
After extensive community engagement and reflecting on our lessons learned, APS has a robust plan to strategically spend dollars to improve outcomes for all students. Among other things, we are planning to fund tutoring, intervention and summer school. All students will also receive additional social-emotional learning and mental health support. We also recognize the importance of engaging families and providing additional in-classroom staffing support through classroom monitors.
A portion of the funds will be used for technology-based upgrades. In addition, APS will be building out its work to have sustainable community schools which provide enhanced wraparound supports, student and parent advisory groups and programs to recruit and retain teachers of color. There will also be continued funding for staff wellness by providing APS employees with unlimited access to City of Aurora recreation centers.
APS’ ESSER plan was presented to the District Accountability Advisory Committee (DAAC) on September 13, 2021. APS will also present its ESSER plan to the APS Board of Education on October 19. The plan will then be submitted to the Colorado Department of Education (CDE) for approval. Once approved by CDE, funding support will be available to APS schools starting in November and December.