In communities across the country, families are calling for fundamental changes to how our children are educated and an equity-infused recovery from the pandemic.
We already know that many school district leaders and school boards are struggling to find effective solutions to address unfinished learning in the ways our children need as we emerge from the pandemic. Many of these districts struggled to provide our children with access to high quality education even before COVID-19 hit. It’s up to us to make sure they turn this unprecedented challenge into a transformational opportunity and that the funding they’ve received actually does what it’s intended to: give our children equitable access to educational opportunity so they can thrive. Without powerful parent advocacy, we’re guaranteed to simply see more of the same.
Accountability is even more urgent now that K-12 schools are receiving $122 billion in relief under the American Rescue Plan Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief.
That is why the National Parents Union, a network of parent organizations and grassroots activists advocating for a higher quality education and quality of life for children across the U.S., launched the watchdog campaign, Everyday Parents Impacting Change (EPIC).
In partnership with families and advocates in communities nationwide, EPIC will:
We are the moms, dads, grandparents, aunts, uncles, god-parents, step-parents and friends fighting daily to give our children a better education.
In March 2021, the U.S. Department of Education announced $122 billion in relief for K-12 schools nationwide under the American Rescue Plan Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ARP ESSER) Fund.
Districts will ultimately decide how the ARP funding is spent (not the federal government). While funding is intended to help schools reopen during the pandemic, very limited guidance is available on what needs to be included in district plans, and how these plans will be evaluated.
As part of this planning process, school districts must engage a variety of stakeholders including parents and show they are able to:
For more information about ARP ESSER funding, visit the U.S. Department of Education’s website here.