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ESSER III – Apportionment Overview

Information relating to the apportionment of Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Funds III (ESSER III) funds of the American Rescue Plan (ARP) Act for Fiscal Year 2020-21.

Program Description

ESSER III funds are part of the ARP Act which was signed into law on March 11, 2021 (Public Law 117-2). ESSER III funds are apportioned to local educational agencies (LEAs) to address the impact of COVID-19 on elementary and secondary schools. Each state must use no less than 90 percent of its allocation ($13,571,726,487) to make subgrants to LEAs, based on each LEA’s share of funds received under Title I, Part A in fiscal year 2020–21.

Allocations and Apportionments

ESSER III fund allocations are based on an LEA’s share of funding received under Title I, Part A in fiscal year (FY) 2020–21 with the exception of new or significantly expanding charters. To have received 2020–21 Title I, Part A, an LEA must have:

  • Been deemed an eligible LEA as reflected by a minimum U.S. Census Bureau estimated poverty count of 10 and poverty rate greater than 2%; and,
  • Applied for funds on CARS no later than March 31, 2021 (deadline extended to April 16, 2021); and,
  • Submitted the Local Control and Accountability Plan (LCAP) Federal Addendum no later than April 16, 2021

ESSER III fund allocations for new or significantly expanding charter schools in FY 2021–22 are based on their share of funding received under Title I, Part A in FY 2021–22. To have a FY 2021–22 Title I, Part A allocation, the charter school must:

  • Submit the Pupil Estimates for New or Significantly Expanding Charters (PENSEC) report in July 2021, and,
  • Be deemed an eligible LEA as reflected by a minimum U.S Census Bureau-equivalent poverty count of 10 or more and a minimum poverty rate greater than 2% as of October 6, 2021; and,
  • Apply for Title I funds on CARS no later than March 31, 2022; and,
  • Submit the LCAP Federal Addendum for Title I no later than March 31, 2022

To receive an apportionment, an LEA must submit ESSER III Legal Assurances by December 17, 2021 and submit the quarterly ESSER III Expenditure Report. ESSER III funds are subject to federal cash management requirements. To reduce the time elapsed between the receipt and disbursement of federal funds, an LEA’s apportionment payment will equal 10 percent of its ESSER III allocation plus expenditures, adjusted for funds previously paid.

The ARP Act requires LEAs that receive ESSER III funds to complete a Safe Return to In-person Instruction and Continuity of Services plan. ED has issued requirements for this plan, and has also required LEAs to complete an Expenditure Plan for the use of ESSER III funds. Additional information concerning the deadlines and requirements of both plans are available on CDE’s ARP Act Funding web page.

For standardized account code structure coding, use Resource Code 3213: Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief III (ESSER III) Fund for the 80 percent portion, Resource Code 3214: Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief III (ESSER III) Fund: Learning Loss for the 20 percent portion, and Revenue Object Code 8290, All Other Federal Revenue.

Grant Award Identification

The United States Department of Education (ED) grant award number for this funding is S425U210016. The Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance subprogram number is 84.425U (ARP-ESSER). The funding is appropriated in Schedule (1) of Item 6100-163-0890 of the Budget Act of 2020 (Chapter 6, Statutes of 2020) as amended by Section 28. The California sub-allocation (pass-through) number is Program Cost Account (PCA) 15559.

Grant Award Period and Special Rules

Under the federal Tydings Amendment, Section 421(b) of the General Education Provisions Act, any funds that are not obligated at the end of the federal funding period, March 24, 2021, through September 30, 2023, shall remain available for obligation for an additional period of 12 months, through September 30, 2024.

This grant is subject to the provisions of the General Education Provisions Act (Public Law 103–382). This grant is also subject to 34 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), Part 200; the Education Department General Administrative Regulations in 34 CFR, parts 76, 77, 81, 82, 84, 97, 98 and 99; the Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards in 2 CFR, Part 200; and 2 CFR, Part 3485.

Pursuant to 2 CFR, Section 200.305(b)(9), interest earned amounts up to $500 per year may be retained by the non-Federal entity for administrative expense. Any additional interest earned on Federal advance payments deposited in interest-bearing accounts must be remitted annually. LEAs should forward interest payments for remittance to the ED to:

California Department of Education
Cashier’s Office
P.O. Box 515006
Sacramento, CA 95851

To ensure proper posting of payments, please indicate the program’s PCA number (PCA 15559), and identify the payment as “Federal Interest Returned.”

An LEA may use ESSER III funds for any allowable expenditure incurred on or after March 13, 2020, the date the national emergency was declared due to COVID-19. Additional information can be found on the ARP Act ESSER III web page.

An LEA must reserve not less than 20 percent of its total ESSER III allocation to address learning loss through the implementation of evidence-based interventions and ensure that such interventions respond to students’ academic, social, and emotional needs. For a complete list of allowable uses go to the ARP Act ESSER III web page referenced in the previous paragraph.


Program Questions: CDE Federal Stimulus Team;

Fiscal Questions: Categorical Allocations and Audit Resolution Office;

Questions:   Categorical Allocations & Audit Resolution |
Last Reviewed: Thursday, August 5, 2021
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