ESSER III Requirements
ESSER III provides funding to Local Education Agencies (LEAs) through Section 2001 of the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER III) Fund, to address the impact of COVID-19 on elementary and secondary schools.
Click here to access ESSER III Allocations & Projected Expenses from the June 14, 2021 Board of Education Meeting.
Per statute, an Local Education Agency (LEA) must include specific information how addresses how it will maintain student and staff health and safety and how it will ensure continuity of services for social-emotional needs, as well as how it meets Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidance, to the greatest extent possible, regarding the following:
- Masks: Masks are strongly recommended for all students PreK-12 and staff while indoors, regardless of vaccination status, except when eating or drinking. For outdoor settings, masks are recommended for unvaccinated individuals in crowded settings or for those with underlying health conditions when social distancing cannot be maintained. All students and staff will wear a mask while riding on a school bus per federal mandate.
- Modifying facilities to allow for physical distancing: Consideration will be made for the physical space within school buildings.
- Handwashing and respiratory etiquette: Frequent handwashing and the use of hand sanitizer will be encouraged at the minimum: upon arrival at school, before and after eating, and after using the restroom. Signage is posted in all district facilities encouraging proper handwashing and respiratory etiquette.
- Cleaning and maintaining healthy facilities, including improving ventilation: The MSD of Lawrence Township has implemented an enhanced cleaning plan. Students and staff will have increased access to hand sanitizer and steps have been taken to increase air quality in all buildings. Click here to read the district enhanced cleaning protocols.
- Contact tracing in combination with isolation and quarantine, in collaboration with state and local health departments: Contact tracing will take place at the building or district level, when appropriate. For Pre K - Grade 12, those asymptomatic individuals exposed to COVID-19 or identified as a close contact need not quarantine so long as they are vaccinated or have maintained social distance of 3 feet and masks or face coverings were worn at all times. Parents or guardians of students who are in classrooms that have positive cases should be notified that their child was in a classroom with a positive case.
- Diagnostic and screening tests: Testing will take place under the direction and guidance of the Marion County Public Health Department. Staff members can contact the district wellness clinic for testing.
- Efforts to provide vaccinations to the school community: The MSD of Lawrence Township encourages all who are eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccination and has hosted an on-site clinic in partnership with Community Health Network. Area clinics have been shared through social media/newsletters, and there is a permanent link to the Indiana Department of Health website which provides a comprehensive lists of available vaccines and vaccination sites. Click here to access the COVID-19 vaccination opportunities page.
- Appropriate accommodations for children with disabilities with respect to health and safety policies: Individual implications of COVID-19 for students with either a 504 or Individualized Education Plan (IEP) will be discussed and decided through parent meetings, case conferences, teacher of record communication, etc.
- Coordination with state and local officials: All COVID-19 developments are monitored closely, and Dr. Smith is in regular communication with state and local health officials. The MSD of Lawrence Township will be vigilant and will not hesitate to make changes, should they be needed. We remain devoted to our values and our mission of educating all students through innovation and dedication. Any positive cases are reported by the school district the the Marion County Public Health Department. The Marion County Public Health Department utilizes a school-specific metric system to determine the safe operation of schools. This system outlines color-coded school positivity risk zones, measuring a school's positivity rate against the community spread to determine their zone. School positivity rates will be calculated weekly by the Marion County Public Health Department. Should the positivity rate in an individual building reach a point of required intervention, action will likely be taken district-wide.