As the agency that oversees federal education programs and grants in the District, OSSE is stewarding $600 million in federal emergency relief funding, 90 percent of which went directly to LEAs, and more than $8.2 million in Governor’s Emergency Education Relief (GEER) Funds. With these funds, OSSE and District LEAs set up critical supports and services, targeting student populations that have experienced significant disruption due to COVID-19 and helping schools prepare for a safe reopening when students and staff returned to in-person classes, five days a week last August. The funds are also being used to support ongoing student and staff well-being and accelerated learning efforts. While funded projects will continue through 2024, here’s a snapshot of how OSSE used recovery funding to support DC students and educators in 2021.
Using a multi-tiered approach, OSSE provided technical assistance, programming and funding to help LEAs and schools providers prepare to reopen for in-person learning and prevent the spread of COVID-19 and respond appropriately when they experience cases or outbreaks of the virus. Read more: Providing Health and Safety Technical Assistance and Supports for Schools, Vaccinating Education Stakeholders and Students, Implementing Robust COVID-19 Testing and Contact Tracing and Guiding Principles for Continuous Education and Supporting Plans
Student and Staff Wellbeing
To support schools with implementing multitiered mental/behavioral health and educator wellness programs, OSSE offered guidance, training and actionable resources. Read more: Supporting Student and Educator Mental Health.
OSSE focused on educating all students throughout recovery by designing and launching a coordinated District-wide approach to high-impact tutoring to support targeted student populations to overcome the effects of interrupted instruction. Read more: Investing in High-Impact Tutoring (HIT) and Providing DC Educators with Meaningful Professional Learning.
Strengthening and Stabilizing the Early Childhood Sector
OSSE supported the early childhood sector throughout 2021 while aligning priorities, practices and resources to strengthen the sector through pandemic recovery and into restoration. Read more: Investing In DC’s Early Childhood System and Recognizing Excellence in Service.
Reimagining Pathways for Postsecondary Success
In 2021, OSSE worked to improve the quality of career education and training across all levels, increased access to postsecondary enrollment opportunities and expanded dual enrollment for high school students. Read more: Paving the Way to Postsecondary Education and Careers for More DC Students.