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Statement from Deborah Delisle, President and CEO of the Alliance for Excellent Education, on the U.S. Education Department Sending Out COVID Relief Money to States

For Release: April 23, 2021

Contact: Dorie Turner Nolt, 404.861.1127,

“We applaud the U.S. Education Department for taking several important steps this week to ensure students receive the support they need through the America Rescue Plan Act (ARP). The state plan application supports the success of all students, particularly those who have historically been underserved, through thoughtful and transparent planning; meaningful consultation with students, families and communities; and oversight of state and district activities. The Department’s revised guidance regarding ‘maintenance of effort’ requirements will help ensure that states continue to invest in schools, even as they receive historic federal funding to address the effects of the pandemic. In addition, we are excited to see today’s announcement regarding the much-needed infusion of $800 million for schools to meet the needs of students experiencing homelessness, a population that has not only become bigger during the pandemic but has also been far more difficult for schools to reach with support and services. We appreciate the Department’s guidance, which calls on states and districts to serve students experiencing homelessness with Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund money and to use the ARP funding as an additional resource for these students. The approach taken by Education Secretary Cardona here is the right one: Get the COVID relief money to students as quickly as possible while also ensuring the dollars are spent in the most effective way possible.”


Deborah S. Delisle is the president and CEO of the Alliance for Excellent Education and served as assistant secretary of elementary and secondary education from 2012 to 2015. 

The Alliance for Excellent Education (All4Ed) is a Washington, DC–based national policy, practice, and advocacy organization dedicated to ensuring that all students, particularly those underperforming and those historically underserved, graduate from high school ready for success in college, work, and citizenship.