Time To Invest in AP® With Readily Available Pandemic Relief Funds

This headline from a recent Wall Street Journal story should raise some eyebrows: “Billions in School Covid-Relief Funds Remain Unspent.” The story reveals K-12 districts in the U.S. have yet to spend a whopping 93 percent of the $122 billion made available as part of the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund (ESSER) for relief from the pandemic.

Districts have wide latitude and minimal restrictions, and thus can focus on their most important needs. Curiously, there remains a distinct lack of funding for Advanced Placement® classes in schools, potentially limiting students’ opportunities to prepare for college, strengthen their applications, and show admission officers they’re ready for college-level coursework, to say nothing of how it helps narrow equity gaps.

This is a golden opportunity for K-12 school districts to either enhance their existing AP course options or embark on a program if one doesn’t exist or has been hamstrung for whatever reason. Can it be done? Absolutely — in fact, any of UWORLD’s ACT, SAT, or AP courses are eligible to be funded under the ESSER programs.

ESSER Deadlines

Individual states are entitled to about $2.4 billion on average, with the first of three use-it-or-lose-it deadlines soon approaching:

  • ESSER I (CARES Act): Sept. 30, 2022
  • ESSER II (CRRSA Act): Sept. 30, 2023
  • ESSER III (ARP Act): Sept. 30, 2024

According to the WSJ story, “districts are spending the money on teachers, counselors, technology, after-school programs and upgrades to school facilities.” Whatever money isn’t spent will disappear from their budgets.

Education Week recently reported on a new AP Precalculus course the College Board® is set to offer in the fall of 2023, covering a broad spectrum of function types that are foundational for careers in mathematics, physics, biology, health science, social science, and data science. Touting the new course, Trevor Packer, Senior VP for Advanced Placement and Instruction for the College Board, told EW, “We think it’s important that all students have an incentive to stay invested and interested in math throughout their high school career and make a successful transition to college or a promising career.”

This is yet one more example of the importance AP plays for students on the high school campus. With the generous ESSER funding opportunities available now, K-12 districts around the country have great incentive to invest in their AP program.

At UWorld, we are committed to helping educators do what they do best: make a difference in the lives of their students by helping each student reach their full potential. For districts, schools, and educators looking to enhance AP classes and boost student scores, UWorld offers an innovative AP resource. Discover how we can help your AP program today.

Congress Provides an Additional $54.3 Billion for Educational Agencies: What You Need to Know About ESSER II – Click to Read More.

References

Ben Chapman, Billions in School Covid-Relief Funds Remain Unspent, The Wall Street Journal. May 18, 2022.
Chapman, B. (2022, May 18). Billions in School Covid-Relief Funds Remain Unspent. The Wall Street Journal.
Ilene Navarro, A New AP Precalculus Course Aims to Diversify the Math Pipeline, Education Week, May 19, 2022.
Navarro, I. (2022, May 19). A New AP Precalculus Course Aims to Diversify the Math Pipeline. Education Week.

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