CARES Act Education Funding Allocations
in SREB States


The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act was approved by Congress and signed into law on March 27, 2020. Below is information on the types of education-related funding provided to states in the CARES Act and tables showing funding allocated toward education in SREB states.

Types of Funding Provided

The legislation provides two large funds that can be used for education-related expenses:

Coronavirus Relief Fund (CRF) — $150 billion

CRF funds were provided to states (as well as territories and other local government units) based on population, and local government entities with a population of 500,000 or more were eligible to directly receive a portion of their state’s funds. The CARES Act restricts CRF funding uses to expenses that a) directly relate to the COVID pandemic, b) were not otherwise budgeted for on the date CARES passed into law, and c) are incurred in 2020.

Education Stabilization Fund (ESF) — $30.75 billion

Most of ESF consists of three sub-funds:

Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Fund (GEER) — $3 billion

GEER funds were distributed to states based on a combination of each state’s population (age 5-24) and its number of students from families who are below the federal poverty level. Each governor may provide their state’s GEER funds to local education agencies (LEAs), institutions of higher education, or education-related entities to provide emergency educational services, childcare and early childhood education, provide student social and emotional support, and protect education-related jobs.

Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund (ESSER) — $13.5 billion

ESSER funds were distributed to states based on the proportion of funds each state received under Title I, Part A of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. State education agencies (SEAs) were required to provide at least 90% of ESSER funds to districts for use in addressing the impact of the COVID pandemic on schools and to ensure continuity in education service provision to students whether school facilities are open or not. Each SEA was permitted to withhold up to 10% of its state allocation to address agency-identified emergency needs resulting from the pandemic.

Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEER) — $14.2 billion

HEER funds were directly distributed to institutions of higher education, with most awards based on the institution’s enrollment of federal Pell Grant recipients.

Allocation of Funding

The tables below display short, non-exhaustive summaries of CARES Act funding allocations identified as education-related by State Strategies staff. For each entry we have identified the source of the funds and provided a reference for the information.

These tables will be continuously updated as new information becomes available.


June 29

$30 million CRF:

  • Testing for Alabama: re-entry COVID testing focused primarily on public colleges and universities
  • Stay Safe Together: COVID-19 notification app intended to be available to all public colleges and universities and public K-12 schools

July 6

$48 million GEER:

  • $10 million to equip school buses with WiFi
  • $4 million for digital textbook and student library resources
  • $26 million for extra academic support to address learning/achievement gaps
  • $9 million for before/after school tutoring for school learning and remediation

$50 million CRF to reimburse institutions of higher education for COVID response expenses.

July 20

$170 million CRF:

  • $70 million for Education Health and Wellness Grants for LEAs to minimize COVID-19 exposure and spread in public schools
  • $100 million for Educational Remote Learning Devices Grants to LEAs to fund purchases of devices, software and related training/maintenance services to facilitate remote virtual learning and continuity of learning

July 31

$100 million CRF for Alabama Broadband Connectivity for Students vouchers to cover equipment and/or service costs for free- and reduced-price lunch eligible students.

September 10

$72.3 million CRF:

  • $27.3 million to community college system
    • $8 million for loaner laptop program
    • $10 million for statewide virtual desktop
    • $2.9 million for videoconferencing equipment
    • $6.4 million for Zoom and online course assistance
  • $25 million to reimburse public 4-year institutions for remote instruction and learning costs; set maximum per institution
  • $20 million to reimburse independent colleges for coronavirus-related expenses; set maximum per institution

September 21

$21.4 million ESSER (ALSDE portion) for services to ensure availability of remote learning for all students, including curriculum and a learning management system.


July 14

$8.9 million ESSER (DESE portion) including:

  • $2.4 million for supplemental curriculum support
  • $4 million for K-8 diagnostic assessments
  • $950,000 for career-tech digital content for industry certification
  • $2.3 million for career-tech digital content pathways
  • $500,000 to support blended learning provision

July 27

$10 million GEER for up to 20,000 wireless internet access devices and reduced-cost data plans provided to school districts.


June 14

$4.3 million ESSER (DEDOE portion):

  • $1.3 million for contracts for school reopening planning, educator evaluation training, content filtering services
  • $1.5 million for grants to address unfinished learning due to COVID, including summer, weekend or after-school programs and supplemental in-school programs for disadvantaged students
  • $1.5 million for grants to improve internet connectivity and affordability in disadvantaged communities

July 13

$7.9 million GEER:

  • $3 million that LEAs may apply for to: support learning and make up for lost time, including technology; deal with behavioral health issues; train and support educators, staff and families
  • $3.5 million to specific LEAs/schools with high numbers of students in poverty and English language learners to strengthen student supports
  • $1.4 million to state agencies for connectivity improvements, remote learning support, prison education and a new principal training program

August 3

$10 million CRF to create Rapid Workforce Training and Redeployment Training Initiative for workers who have lost jobs and income due to the COVID-19 crisis.

August 24

$20 million CRF for high-speed internet infrastructure, statewide internet speed survey, and broadband service and devices for students from low-income families.

October 26

$1 million CRF for remote learning grants to licensed child care facilities to support school-age students’ remote learning.

November 24

$45 million CRF to colleges and universities to offset expenses directly related to their COVID-19 response.


June 11

$120.4 million GEER including:

  • $4 million for B.E.S.T. reading and civics curriculum
  • $64 million for summer recovery
  • $1 million for additional strategies to support summer learning
  • $35 million for rapid credentials
  • $2.5 million for pathway to job market dashboard
  • $10.9 million for CTE equipment
  • $2 million for rural student telehealth services

$76.2 million ESSER (FLDOE portion) including:

  • $20 million for PreK-3 progress monitoring & data-informed supports
  • $5 million to upskill highly effective reading coaches
  • $5 million to build capacity for reading
  • $5 million to ensure high-quality regional reading supports
  • $20 million for B.E.S.T. reading and civics curriculum
  • $8 million for free SAT/ACT
  • $8 million for instructional continuity plans


July 15

ESSER (GADOE portion):

  • $14.1 million equitable services funding to districts
  • $17.1 million rainy day fund for district needs in 2020-21 school year
  • Additional amount budgeted for connectivity devices (from $13.9 million remaining after other costs accounted for)

August 3

$6 million CRF for school systems to purchase equipment to improve connectivity for students who do not have sufficient internet access at home.

August 19

$105 million GEER:

  • $29.3 million to support student connectivity
  • $11.5 million for mental health and student support services
  • $10.4 million for technical college eCampus initiative
  • $10 million for independent colleges COVID-19 relief
  • $3.3 million for Construction Ready Program support
  • Up to $19 million for Supporting Onsite Learning for Virtual Education early learning program

January 21, 2021

$20.7 million ESSER:

  • $6.1 million to Georgia Network for Educational and Therapeutic Support (GNETS) programs
  • $14.6 million to school districts to offset equitable services funding provided by districts to private schools


May 11

$30 million GEER to LEAs from state education agency to expand remote learning access by improving digital learning infrastructure and to expand remote student food services; awarded using the Title I, Part A formula to concentrate the funds in areas of the most need.

August 27

ESSER (KDE portion) including:

  • $600,000 for additional teachers in area technology centers
  • $2.3 million for remote learning technology for area technology centers, including $1.8 million for student computers
  • $1.3 million for cleaning and sanitizing supplies, personal protective equipment and student instructional kits for area technology centers
  • $787,500 for student assessments
  • $4.4 million for virtual schools network, support for district virtual and blended learning, online student registration
  • $1 million for Kentucky New Teacher Support program
  • $3 million for internet filtering, safety and protection services

November 17

$20 million CRF to colleges and universities to offset expenses directly related to their COVID-19 response.


June 30

$25 million ESSER (LADOE portion) for incentive grants to school districts to support implementation of academic plans for 2020-21 and address anticipated challenges to remote instruction delivery.

July 8

$50 million GEER:

  • $35 million to K-12
    • $32.3 million for devices and internet connectivity
    • $2.7 million for social and emotional learning curriculum
  • $15 million to higher education
    • $10 million for high-demand short term credentials at community/tech colleges
    • $4.5 million for devices for public postsecondary students
    • $500,000 for student, faculty and staff training for transition from face-to-face to hybrid learning
    • $250,000 for statewide dual enrollment portal


June 24

$45.7 million GEER:

  • $10 million for K-12 technology
  • $10 million for community college workforce development grants to develop and expand in-demand training programs
  • $10 million for competitive grants to schools using innovative approaches to engage students, teachers and communities
  • $10 million for wireless broadband education network for students in rural areas
  • $5 million for wireless broadband education network for underprivileged students in urban areas
  • $657,990 School for Deaf/School for Blind

June 29

$210 million CRF:

  • $100 million to school districts for student devices, connectivity technology, staff support for learning technology
  • $100 million provide tutoring services for at-risk students
  • $10 million in addition to GEER funds, above, for wireless broadband education network for students in rural areas

June 30

$90 million CRF to reimburse state-supported universities for COVID-19 related expenses, including support for public safety activities.

June 30

$18.7 million ESSER (MSDE portion) for online courses, course registration and license/access fees, virtual school consortium contracts and associated course materials.

September 21

$10 million CRF grants from MSDE to schools that reopen in fall 2020, base award amount of $200,000 plus per-student allocation. May be used for student readiness and transportation expenses.


July 9

$75 million CRF:

  • $65 million for Mississippi Electric Cooperatives Broadband COVID-19 Grant Program
  • $10 million for COVID-19 Broadband Provider Grant Program

July 9

$150 million CRF for Equity in Distance Learning Act:

  • $129.7 million for Equity in Distance Learning Grants to districts based on ADM (districts encouraged to leverage ESSER funds to offset device, supports and service costs)
  • $300,000 for district implementation of digital learning plans
  • $20 million to schools based on needs for devices, connectivity and online access technology, and for technical support and professional development

July 9

$50 million CRF for Mississippi Pandemic Response Broadband Availability Act — MDEK12 grants to school districts to expand broadband access into unserved areas.

July 9

$100 million CRF for Postsecondary Education COVID-19 Mitigation Relief Program — reimbursement to public colleges and universities and private four-year institutions for COVID-related expenses; set maximum per institution:

  • $50 million for state universities and private four-year institutions
  • $50 million for public community/junior colleges

$10 million CRF for Independent Schools’ COVID-19 Assistance Grant Fund — reimbursement for private colleges or universities not eligible for above; set maximum per institution.

September 14

$23 million GEER for Emergency Essential Educational Services:

  • Priority 1: early care and education services for very young children ages 0-5
  • Priority 2: education services for young schoolchildren ages 5-12, and school-age persons with developmental, intellectual, or mental or behavioral health disabilities ages 5-21

February 8, 2021

$5 million GEER for Emergency Essential Educational Services:

  • Priority 1.1: provide early care and education services for very young children ages 0-5 in foster care or whose parents have lost access to or cannot afford child care, or risk experiencing or have experienced negative job or job search impacts due to child care responsibilities
  • Priority 1.2: enable parents and providers of early care and education services for very young children ages 0-5 to improve the quality of those services
  • Priority 2.1: Provide care during daytime work hours for young school-age children who are in foster care, who have lost access to in-person schooling, whose parents are essential workers, or whose parents risk experiencing or have experienced negative job impacts due to child care responsibilities
  • Priority 2.2: provide care for individuals with diagnosed developmental delays or with intellectual, mental or behavioral health disabilities who are in foster care, who have lost care to regular care and education services, or whose medical conditions force their caregivers to choose between health risks of in-person instruction and services or negative job or job search impacts

North Carolina

May 4

CRF funds in COVID-19 Recovery Act, HB 1043:

[See below for updated allocations from Coronavirus Relief Act 3.0, HB 1105]

  • $75 million for school nutrition programs
  • $70 million for summer learning programs
  • $30 million for schools to purchase student computers and devices; $5 million for staff computers and devices
  • $11 million to improve K-12 student internet connectivity
  • $9 million for rural broadband
  • $20 million to state universities for online learning and assistance to students and their families

July 1

CRF additions and revisions:

  • $7 million for personal protective equipment to facilitate in-person instruction
  • $5 million for public school grants to provide access to services for exceptional children who lost access due to COVID school closures
  • $2.5 million pilot program in digital and personalized learning for high school students to bridge the gap between chemistry and physical science classes and CTE pathways

July 2

$20 million CRF for early childhood initiatives to mitigate financial impact due to COVID.

July 15

$40 million ESSER (NCDPI portion) including:

  • $3.5 million for school district learning management system acquisitions
  • $1 million for educational content broadcasting partnerships
  • $10.8 million for district purchases of digital curriculum
  • $10 million for instructional support for exceptional children
  • $4.5 million for district partnerships grants to provide K-8 children with day care on remote learning days
  • $2.2 million to ineligible, waived, or underfunded charter schools

August 12

$95.6 million GEER:

  • $40 million for public school nurses, counselors, social workers, and psychologists
  • $20 million for additional in-school supports for at-risk students and students with disabilities
  • $15 million for community college tuition assistance to students in short-term, high-demand workforce training programs
  • $6 million for state university emergency assistance to students
  • $4 million for independent colleges/universities emergency assistance to students
  • $566,000 for NC School of Science and Mathematics, UNC School of the Arts

September 4

CRF Funds in Coronavirus Relief Act 3.0, HB 1105
Revised funding:

  • $21 million (previously $11 million) to improve K-12 student internet connectivity
  • $25 million (previously $20 million) for state universities online learning and assistance to students and their families
  • $27 million (previously $7 million) for school personal protective equipment to facilitate in-person instruction
  • $22 million (previously $5 million) for public school grants to provide access to services for exceptional children who lost access due to COVID school closures

September 4

CRF Funds in Coronavirus Relief Act 3.0, HB 1105

New funding:

  • $5 million to community colleges for personal protective equipment and for COVID testing
  • $13 million for personal protective equipment to state universities
  • $6.5 million for alternative education option scholarships to students with disabilities during the pandemic
  • $5 million for personal protective equipment to private colleges and universities
  • $1.1 million to Communities in Schools for personal protective equipment, assistance to K-12 students with remote instruction, nutrition, family support and mental health
  • $5 million for community college equipment costs for health care workforce and first responder programs for state COVID response
  • $1 million to New Teacher Support Program for coaching and mentoring at public schools most impacted by COVID
  • $1 million for public school online instruction safety management products
  • $35 million for operational grants to licensed childcare providers
  • $5 million to Extra Credit Grant Program for family financial support for virtual schooling and childcare costs

September 12

$40 million CRF:

  • $30 million for wireless high speed hot spots for students
  • $8 million to NC Student Connect sites providing free high-speed internet for students in convenient locations 
  • $2 million for remote learning educator professional development, student and parent training


June 12

$8 million GEER + $8 million ESSER (OKSDE portion) for school district incentive grants in priority areas:

  • Connectivity
  • Learning or Content Management Systems
  • Mental health supports for students
  • Science of reading for elementary-age students
  • Compensatory services for at-risk students

July 1

$3 million ESSER (OKSDE portion) for 50,000 mobile hotspot connectivity devices to districts to support distance learning.

July 17

$30 million GEER:

  • $8 million for Bridge the Gap digital wallet $1,500 grants for low-income families to purchase content, tutoring and technology
  • $10 million for Stay in School private school scholarships for low-income families economically impacted by COVID-19 
  • $12 million for Learn Anywhere Oklahoma, school access to high quality digital content including AP courses

July 30

$10 million CRF for school PPE, including 1.7 million reusable masks — two per teacher and student.

South Carolina

June 26

$222.7 million CRF to school districts:

  • $12 million for additional cafeteria costs (salaries, cost of providing food)
  • $210.7 million to reimburse unbudgeted instructional support beyond state instructional day/hour requirements

 $50 million CRF:

  • County-by-county broadband mapping
  • Develop statewide broadband infrastructure plan
  • Provide mobile hotspots and broadband service to at least 100,000 households

July 9

$2.4 million GEER to eight historically black colleges and universities.

July 9

ESSER (SCDE portion) including:

  • $3.3 million for digital learning grants to districts for computer and connectivity devices, learning software and systems
  • $1 million for additional pandemic-related school food services costs
  • $6.8 million to districts for learning management systems, training and professional development, and to purchase digital learning content
  • $1 million for digital learning content development
  • $2.4 million for student information system upgrades
  • $1.6 million for VirtualSC middle grades expansion
  • $1 million for WiFi provision via school buses, and school bus cleaning/sanitizing
  • $1.8 million for protective masks for students, teachers and staff

July 20

$32 million GEER for Safe Access to Flexible Education grants for private school students.

▪ ruled unconstitutional by SC Supreme Court, October 7

October 2

Adds to acceptable uses of $222.7 million CRF to school districts above:

  • Safety and cleaning supplies, personal protective equipment
  • Additional COVID response expenses to Virtual SC
  • Nurse hiring/services for schools without a full-time nurse
  • Supplemental and support services for unengaged students, interventionists and after-school learning extensions for students with gaps or learning difficulties
  • Learning device and connectivity equipment purchases


May 22

$25 million ESSER (TNDOE portion):

  • $13 million for competitive technology grants to districts
  • $4 million for online instructional resources and supports
  • $2 million for grow-your-own teacher recruitment initiatives
  • $1.5 million for mental health and community resources
  • $500,000 for leadership development
  • $1 million district assistance for student technology, high-quality online learning resources, student remediation
  • $3 million to districts for scaling up innovative strategies

July 7

$81 million CRF:

  • $11 million noncompetitive grants for school districts to implement continuous learning plan
  • $50 million for school district device purchases, strategies
  • $20 million to higher ed institutions to cover expenses of social distancing and technology for distance learning

July 31

$23 million ESSER (TNDOE portion) including:

  • $6.5 million for online literacy instruction
  • $15.5 million for TN Teacher Promise recruitment grants to nonprofits, institutions of higher education

August 21

$61.1 million CRF for Tennessee Emergency Broadband Fund grants (in addition to legislative state funds appropriation of $60 million).

November 4

$5 million GEER for charter school support grants. $2.5 million distributed to all charter school on enrollment basis, remaining $2.5 million to charters that demonstrated significant academic growth in 2019.


July 8

$57 million GEER for state need-based financial aid programs.

July 15

$128.6 million ESSER (TEA portion) including:

  • $114.2 million Texas Home Learning Initiative to provide remote learning resources to districts, including instructional materials, software, special education tools, online learning professional development for educators, online learning implementation support for districts
  • $6 million for nonpublic school equitable services
  • $2 million for ESSER grant technical assistance

July 17

$200 million CRF for Texas Education Agency purchase and distribution to LEAs of digital learning devices and home internet service and devices.

July 22

$118 million GEER:

  • $46.5 million for financial aid for upskilling and reskilling displaced workers in high-demand fields, including workers who have earned some college credit but no credential
  • $46.5 million for emergency postsecondary student support
  • $15 million for strategic education and workforce data infrastructure, expanding existing systems that support college and career advising, and helping students stay on track for credentials
  • $10 million to improve the quality of online learning through improved course offerings and institutional capabilities for data use to support student success, including development of Open Educational Resource course materials

November 18

$420 million CRF to reimburse school districts for WiFi hotspots and student devices purchased to allow remote learning during the COVID-19 pandemic.


June 10

$66.8 million GEER for K-12:

  • $26.9 million to expand high-speed internet access, including providing laptop computers and Mi-Fi devices for students without home internet access
  • $10 million to expand early childhood education and childcare, especially for children with academic and social-emotional needs
  • $3.5 million to expand Virtual Virginia online learning program for elementary and middle grades students and to expand Virtual Virginia Professional Learning Network
  • $3 million for unfunded continuation of school-based meals programs, including hazard pay for school nutrition staff

$23.4 million GEER for higher education to address student financial needs, cover COVID health and safety costs, and support online learning activities:

  • $14.5 million for public colleges and universities
  • $3.8 million for private four-year institutions
  • $4.9 million for community college system (also intended to help displaced adult workers earn stackable credentials in targeted industries)

$23.9 million ESSER (VDOE portion) for special education, instruction and assessment, student social and emotional health, and COVID-19-related health and safety in school buildings and facilities.

July 1

$23.9 million ESSER (VDOE portion) including:

  • $5 million for school district summer academic academy grants
  • $5 million to districts, public or private service providers for special education compensatory services and special education class size reduction
  • $3 million to districts for safety and personal protective equipment
  • $2 million to districts for facility, transportation cleaning supplies
  • $1 million for remote/virtual learning content creation
  • $1 million to districts for student mental health services
  • $1 million to expand instructional content, develop assessments through Virtual Virginia and GoOpen Virginia

October 7

$30 million CRF for grants to improve broadband access in underserved communities through Commonwealth Connect program.

October 8

$220.8 million CRF for K-12 COVID preparedness and response for 2020-21, including testing supplies, PPE, sanitization and distance learning technology.

October 16

[Budget amendments approved by VA General Assembly; includes some previously announced items]

  • $95.2 million CRF as COVID-19 Local Relief to school districts in support of Standards of Quality
  • $220.8 million CRF for K-12 costs for reopening schools
  • $120 million CRF for higher education PPE, virtual education, cleaning, telework and other COVID recovery costs
  • $76.6 million CRF for childcare:
    • $60 million for stabilization grants to childcare providers, local community partnerships
    • $16.6 million for support to school districts, local governments, religious institutions and community centers to increase local capacity for care of school-age children

October 27

$115.7 million CRF to state colleges and universities to cover COVID-related expenses through 2020.

November 9

$22 million CRF to private institutions of higher ed to cover COVID-related expenses from July 1 to November 1, 2020.

West Virginia

July 1

$8.7 million ESSER (WVDE portion) including:

  • $2.8 million for 1,900 public internet access points
  • $1.9 million for public internet access point installation and network management/support
  • $3.9 million for grants to districts for student social-emotional support services, remote learning technology infrastructure or remote learning achievement gaps

July 1

$50 million CRF for broadband development.

July 31

$2.5 million GEER for COVID testing of all students and staff at public and private colleges and universities.

August 5

$1.6 million GEER for private school use in reopening plans.

September 4

$50 million CRF for PPE, cleaning supplies and COVID testing at K-12 schools.