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Colorado ESSER Report: Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund

Mancos starts summer camp with ESSER III funds

A devastating tragedy rallied the small rural community of Mancos to offer a summer camp that gave students a needed outlet and teachers additional employment – thanks to $197,400 from ESSER III.

When two teenagers died by suicide in the summer of 2020 and 2021, the grief-stricken community came together with a sense of urgency for the summer months going forward. Teachers were burned out, and families didn’t have many care alternatives for their children.

Stedman afterschool program focuses on social-emotional skills

Stedman Elementary School in Denver’s North Park Hill neighborhood used $50,000 from an ESSER grant to offer an afterschool program specifically for boys of color.

Districts communicate about their ESSER funds with help from two nonprofits

Adam Hartman, superintendent of the Cañon City School District, wanted to provide financial transparency so everyone in his small community could find out how the district was spending the $331,335 it received in federal pandemic Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief funding.  

ESSER III funding helps Center open child care for staff

Child care was already a problem for the teachers and staff in Center Consolidated School District that was made worse when the pandemic hit, but fortunately, the school district found a solution with the aid of ESSER funding.

Districts use ESSER funds for reading contest

Reading isn’t usually considered a competitive sport, but elementary school students in three southeast Colorado school districts waged a pitched Battle of the Books with the help of an ESSER Rural Program Development Grant.

Students from Wiley, Rocky Ford and Cheraw school districts recently squared off in a quiz-show-style contest, quarterbacked by Santa Fe Trail Board of Cooperative Education Services Assistant Director Natalie Brown.

Chief of Staff Scott Jones delivers update on CDE’s ESSER fund rollout to the Board of Education

Colorado school districts have been able to provide more after-school programs, summer learning opportunities and focused studies on math and literacy thanks to $1.8 billion the state received in ESSER funding, according to Scott Jones, CDE's chief of staff. 

Mathematics education grant boosts rural teacher development with ESSER III funds

The Colorado Department of Education is using $125,000 of federally allocated ESSER III funds to plan and deliver professional development opportunities for math teachers in the San Luis Valley.

Jeffco uses $1.5 million in ESSER III funds for mental health services for students

Jefferson County Public Schools is providing free mental health services for students at 155 schools throughout the county with about $1.5 million from the district’s third round of ESSER funds. 

To provide the services, Jeffco is partnering with Hazel Health, a physical and mental telehealth provider, to help students develop coping skills, learn how to self-regulate and increase their resilience.

DPS uses high-impact tutoring grant to spur improvement

A $2 million ESSER grant is funding high-impact tutoring in Denver Public Schools that is resulting in higher-than-expected growth on students’ statewide assessments.

“We weren't looking for just scores. We were also looking at their confidence level, their engagement level, you know. And right now, all the data is pretty promising.” Susan Cheng, a program manager on the Expanded Academic Learning team at DPS

Afterschool theater program uses ESSER funding

Theatre SilCo in Silverthorne, formerly Lake Dillon Theatre Company, is filling an urgent need for after-school care in Summit County with $528,432 in grant funding from the ESSER III Expanded Learning Opportunities Grant Program.