How CARES can Help Improve Productivity in Education

How CARES can Help Improve Productivity in Education

Note:  This article is provided for informational purposes only. This does not constitute legal or financial advice by PFU America, Inc., its representatives, or its affiliates. Please consult with your professional advisors.

The Covid-19 pandemic has severely impacted public institutions at all levels. One challenge has been the disruption caused by key personnel being required to work remotely. These administrative personnel are responsible for managing essential paperwork, including transcripts, employment applications, forms, reports, assessments, and more. Staff attrition has also resulted in increased workloads.

Many education organizations have found solutions to some of these obstacles through technology. From registration to classrooms to HR, you digitize paper-based workflow and processes using our scanners, improving productivity and cutting costs. This leads to more efficient workflows, happier staff and easier access to data.


But how to pay for this? That’s where the American Rescue Plan (ARP) Act of 2021 and the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, which provide trillions of dollars of assistance measures, and other Federal funding programs, come in.

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The Federal Department of Education (DOE) has established a series of grant programs available to State educational agencies (SEAs) for the purpose of providing local educational agencies with emergency relief funds to address the impact that COVID-19 has had, and continues to have, on elementary and secondary schools across the Nation. These include:

  • Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund (ESSER I) Fund. On March 27, 2020, Congress set aside approximately $13.2 billion of the $30.75 billion allotted to the Education Stabilization Fund through the CARES Act for the ESSER Fund. This fund expired on Sept. 30, 2022.
  • ESSER II Fund. The Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations (CRRSA) Act, 2021, signed into law on December 27, 2020, provided an additional $54.3 billion for the ESSER II fund. This program will expire on Sept. 30, 2023.
  • ARP ESSER Fund. The American Rescue Plan (ARP) Act added an additional $122 billion for the ARP Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ARP ESSER) Fund to help safely reopen and sustain school operations and address the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the nation’s students. This program will expire on Sept. 30, 2024. 
  • The Distance Learning and Telemedicine program helps rural communities use the unique capabilities of telecommunications to connect to each other and to the world, overcoming the effects of remoteness and low population density.
  • Education Stabilization Fund-Reimagine Workforce Preparation Grants (ESF-RWP Grants) provide support to help States leverage the power of entrepreneurship to create new educational opportunities and pathways that help citizens return to work, small businesses recover, and new entrepreneurs thrive.
  • The Governor’s Emergency Education Relief (GEER) fund consists of grants awarded to states based on the number of school-age children.
  • The Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds (SLFRF) program, provides $350 billion to ensure that “state, local, and Tribal governments have the resources needed to fight the pandemic, sustain and strengthen the economic recovery, maintain vital public services, and make investments that support long-term growth, opportunity, and equity.”

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Time is of the essence, so act now! As noted above, the second and third rounds ESSER funding– ESSER II (CRRSA) and ESSER III (ARP) – will expire on Sept. 30th of 2023 and 2024, respectively.

Learn more about funding sources at the Education Stabilization Fund page hosted by the Office of Elementary & Secondary Education. Qualifying institutions should visit the Treasury Covid Relief page and can submit grant applications directly via the Treasury Submission Portal. 

PFU America, Inc. offers many image scanner models that are well-suited for educational institutions.

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