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Public comment sought on education department’s state plan

The Nevada Department of Education is seeking public input on allocating over a billion dollars from the American Rescue Plan Act’s Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund.

The state’s education department published its state plan for its share of the $1.07 billion in funding through the federal relief bill, set to address the impacts of interrupted learning and ensuring the well-being of students and educators.

“Our ARP ESSER State Plan highlights Nevada’s innovative and responsive COVID-19 recovery and underscores our optimism as we focus on renewal and future-proofing our education system,” said Jhone Ebert, superintendent of public instruction. “Our team has worked tirelessly to engage a diverse group of stakeholders and ensure that our state plan will meet the needs of Nevada’s distinct students and communities, and we look forward to receiving additional feedback.”

According to the state’s education department, under the direction of the U.S. Department of Education, the state plans must describe how each state will ensure transparency in several aspects: planning, identifying and meeting the needs of students most impacted by the pandemic, investing in evidence-based interventions, and prioritizing educational equity, meaningful stakeholder engagement and strong fiscal oversight.

The state’s education department states in a release, “Nevada’s ARP ESSER State Plan was developed based on robust stakeholder consultation. The department established a Strategic Implementation Team (SIT) which hosted more than 30 stakeholder meetings with hundreds of stakeholders.”

The stakeholder list included students, educators, families, tribal nations, civil rights organizations that included disabilities rights organizations, along with school and district administrators.

“In addition, numerous feedback sessions focused on the distinct needs of student groups, including students with disabilities, students who are English learners, and students experiencing homelessness,” the release states.

The Nevada Department of Education is slated to receive $107 million in federal funds through the American Rescue Plan. The state’s 17 county school districts and state Public Charter Authority are pegged to receive $966 million in funds, for which they must create spending plans.

The Department seeks input from the public on the plan no later than 5:00 p.m. on Aug. 9, 2021 for the state plan.

“I want to commend the Nevada Department of Education for their thoughtful and collaborative approach to leading our K-12 education system during this time of rebuilding,” said Gov. Steve Sisolak. “We are grateful for this dedicated relief funding for education and look forward to seeing the positive outcomes of the state and district investments.”

To leave a comment, head to https://doe.nv.gov/home/Public_Comment_ARPESSER/

Contact Editor Jeffrey Meehan at jmeehan@pvtimes.com

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