The U.S. Department of Education this morning announced the approval of Iowa’s American Rescue Plan Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ARP ESSER) plan and distributed the remaining $258 million in ARP ESSER funds to the state. Iowa’s plan details how the state is using and plans to use ARP ESSER funds to safely reopen and sustain the safe operation of schools and equitably expand opportunity for students who need it most, particularly those most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Iowa Department of Education Director Ann Lebo said the funding “is essential to supporting our continued work to accelerate learning and provide social-emotional-behavioral health supports” through a framework known as the Multi-Tiered System of Supports. With the third infusion of federal funding, Iowa is receiving $775 million in total support through the ARP ESSER plan.