AASA Issues Statement on the One-Year Anniversary of the American Rescue Plan

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact:
James Minichello
703-774-6953
jminichello@aasa.org

Alexandria, Va. – March 11, 2022 – Daniel A. Domenech, executive director of AASA, The School Superintendents Association, issued the following statement today on the one-year anniversary of the American Rescue Plan.

“Today marks one year since the American Rescue Plan (ARP) was signed into law. One bill, heralded as one of the most progressive pieces of legislation in a generation and cited for its work to reduce childhood poverty by up to half, the ARP is critical funding to support our nation’s public schools in their ongoing work to provide students with safe, in-person learning while also working with students to provide learning recovery and other non-academic supports and services.

“As the third iteration of Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) Funding available to schools, ARP is the largest of the three, the bill with the widest reach and the potential to move the needle on helping schools and students not just survive the COVID-19 pandemic, but also emerge on the other end with school systems better positioned to develop well-rounded students ready for career and college success.

“AASA was proud to support the legislation from its earliest phases, and we remain grateful to the administration and Congress for not only providing the funding but continuing to focus on the importance of local control and flexibility in the program structure and implementation. We believe the ARP funding will have a lasting impact in enabling students to both recover from lost in-person instruction, and also assist district leaders in thoughtfully investing federal funds in ways that address longstanding disparities in accessing education opportunities for students that were only exacerbated as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, a belief that was affirmed in our most recent survey gauging member feedback on ARP.

“Looking ahead to summer 2022 and fall 2023, school superintendents continue to report prioritized investment in summer learning and enrichment programming; expanding whole child supports, including social, emotional, mental, and physical health and development; and adding staffing and specialists to support student needs. The road map for success for ARP is long, and implementation work will continue to require candid communication between Congress, the administration and school system leaders. 

“We look forward to working with both Congress and the administration on policy changes that can enhance the success of ARP investment and the ability to meet the pandemic-related needs of our most vulnerable students.”

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For specific questions, please contact Noelle Ellerson Ng, AASA associate executive director, advocacy and governance, at nellerson@aasa.org.

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About AASA
AASA, The School Superintendents Association, founded in 1865, is the professional organization for more than 13,000 educational leaders in the United States and throughout the world. AASA’s mission is to support and develop effective school system leaders who are dedicated to equitable access for all students to the highest quality public education. For more information, visit www.aasa.org.