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American Rescue Plan (ARP/ESSER III)

American Rescue Plan (ARP/ESSER III)

American Rescue Plan (ARP/ESSER III)

Contracting Opportunity for Community Organizations
February 3, 2023    

MPS intends to select multiple organizations to provide summer bridge programming for students in grades prek-12 during the month of August 2023 when District sponsored summer school is not in session. MPS is seeking proposals for culturally specific programming focused on school readiness, student wellbeing, and academic enrichment.  

The full RFP and supporting documents are below:

Total Amount of Funding Available: $200,000
Range of Awards: $10,000 -$35,000
Length of Contract: July 1, 2023 - September 15, 2023

Key dates:

      RFP Issued:                                   February 3, 2023
      Applicant Information Sessions:    February 14, 2023 & February 16,  2023
Proposals Due:                              March 10, 2023
Award Notification:                        April 10, 2023

RFP Information Sessions
The District will hold two virtual information sessions about this RFP. Staff will provide an overview of the application and required attachments, and provide time for questions and answers from potential applicants. Sessions will be recorded and posted online for those who cannot attend. 

     February 14, 2023 from 2:00 - 3:00 p.m. CST
     February 16, 2023 from 9:00 - 10:00 a.m. CST

Questions about this RFP can be directed to esser3@mpls.k12.mn.us or 612-668-0542. Sign up here to be notified of future ESSER III community partner contracting opportunities.


ARP/ESSER III overview

The American Rescue Plan (ARP), a $1.9 trillion COVID-19 stimulus bill, was signed into law by President Biden on March 11, 2021. ARP, also known as ESSER III, provides $170 billion to help K-12 schools and institutions of higher education reopen safely for in-person learning and address students’ needs.
ARP includes an intentional focus on addressing academic losses students may have experienced due to COVID. It has an additional focus on ensuring staff and students continue to experience physical spaces that are safe and supportive of a healthy learning environment. School Districts will be required to use at least 20% of the funds they receive to address lost learning time for students. The opportunities and possibilities represented by this investment in education is unprecedented. While there are specific guidelines, there is also flexibility.
MPS has received $159.4 million in ARP/ESSER III funds.

Expenditure Description and ESSER III Budget

Following are investments MPS is making with ESSER III funds:

  • 6-12 Literacy Specialist Professional Development Material:  $7,400
  • Additional mental health support for high school and early childhood:  $540,000
  • Additional Reading Licensure Pathway:  $500,000
  • Additional Related Services Staff:  $1,952,514
  • Additional Staff for ESSER Evaluation and Reporting:  $1,337,650
  • Air Handling Replacement at Select Schools: $11,600,000
  • Americorps Tutors-Check & Connect: $300,000
  • Americorps Tutors-Indian Education: $80,000
  • Americorps Tutors-Office of Black Student Achievement: $100,000
  • Arts Afterschool Special Education Programming: $216,000
  • Birth to 5 Social-Emotional Learning (SEL) Intervention: $180,000
  • Bus Driver Recruitment and Retention: $2,437,323
  • Career and Technical Education (CTE) English Learner Support: $296,775
  • Community Outreach Navigators: $321,542
  • Contract Support for Licensure Pathway Program: $76,070
  • Core Curriculum Materials for Special Education: $200,000
  • Culturally Specific Community Contracts for Student/Family Support: $2,499,999
  • Custodial Recruitment and Retention: $4,582,080
  • Diverse, Inclusive Books and Materials: $310,000
  • Dual Capacity Framework Professional Development: $250,000
  • Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) Literacy Interventions: $75,000
  • Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) Support for Expanded High Five: $969,780
  • Early Childhood Special Education (ECSE) Support for High Five Summer Program: $132,202
  • Early Childhood Transition to Kindergarten Development: $183,678
  • Early Reading Strategies Professional Development: $2,000,000
  • Embodied Math Strategies Curriculum and Professional Development: $400,000
  • Emergency Management Service & Supplies: $1,070,562
  • ESP (Educational Assistants) Professional Development for Climate and Equity: $1,200,000
  • ESSER Finance Support Staff: $660,168
  • Expand Summer Field Trips: $100,000
  • Expanded Afterschool and Summer Freedom School Programming: $1,666,666
  • Expanded GEMS/GISE to two additional summer locations: $300,000
  • Expanded summer programing opportunities: $300,000
  • Expanded Summer High Five: $1,871,987
  • Expanded Super Summer (Community Education): $166,666
  • Experiential Learning Contracts (Vendor Contracts): $3,300,000
  • Experiential Learning Grades 6-12 (Licensed Staff): $1,145,010
  • Family Engagement Supplies: $20,000
  • Formal Student Collaboration City Wide Board and YPE to review ESSER investments: $434,125
  • Functional Communication Intervention Development for Special Education: $150,000
  • Furniture, Fixtures and Equipment Supplies: $250,000
  • Graduation Coaches-Indian Education: $125,024
  • Graduation Coaches-Multilingual: $250,048
  • Graduation Coaches-Office of Black Student Achievement: $125,024
  • High School-to-Educator Pathway: $550,000
  • Homeless/Highly Mobile (HHM) Student Literacy Project: $60,000
  • Homeless/Highly Mobile (HHM) Student Summer Programming: $50,000
  • Human Resource Consultants: $531,004
  • iNCI (Nonviolent Crisis Intervention) Train the Trainer Support: $219,000
  • iNCI (Nonviolent Crisis Intervention) Training for additional support staff: $466,666
  • Increase AVID Tutors: $395,211
  • K-5 Special Education Literacy Materials: $156,200
  • Lifeguards for 3 Middle School Pools: $339,117
  • Maintain HEPA and MERV 14 air filters: $2,295,300
  • Math Recovery Intervention Professional Development/Materials (Special Ed): $720,000
  • Math Tradebook Sets Grades 6-12: $460,000
  • Meal Support for MPS Online School: $2,374,965
  • Mental Health (Support Special Specialists and Cultural Consultancy): $306,107
  • Mental Health Student Support Groups: $75,000
  • Multi-Tiered Systems of Support (MTSS) Tracking System: $700,000
  • Multilingual Digital Learning Tool/Digital Literacy: $976,141
  • Operations Support for Academic Programs and Materials: $2,200,000
  • Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Supplies: $150,000
  • PRESS (Literacy) Professional Development: $32,000
  • Reading Apprenticeship (Literacy) Professional Development: $202,384
  • Reading Partners (Literacy Tutoring) additional site: $90,000
  • Restorative Practices Training: $200,000
  • School Improvement & Academic Data System to support MTSS: $500,000
  • School Spirit Sports Camps: $380,868
  • Secondary Literacy Interventions Professional Development: $474,290
  • Secondary Social-Emotional Learning (SEL) Interventions for Special Education: $450,000
  • Site-based Parent Participatory Evaluation expansion: $400,000
  • Social-Emotional Learning (SEL)/Anti-Bias Curriculum: $600,000
  • South High American Indian Staff and Professional Development: $406,105
  • Special Education Data Warehouse: $420,000
  • Special Education Elementary Support for Literacy Support at 3 Schools: $618,321
  • Special Education Evaluations Extended Time and Support: $300,000
  • Special Education Expanded Summer Programming: $1,600,000
  • Special Education Interventions (K-12): $600,000
  • Staff/Program Continuity: $74,628,539
  • Students of Color Mentorship Program for students in college credit courses: $60,000
  • Summer Scholars Sailing School Extended Learning Opportunities: $80,000
  • Swimming Education Supplies for Students: $310,453
  • Teacher Licensure Pathways: $1,283,547
  • Technology Universal Access (Devices): $14,040,000
  • Technology Universal Access Literacy Software: $168,000
  • Telescope Math Teachers: $824,425
  • Transportation Support for Academic Programs and Materials: $2,437,867
  • Washers & Dryers: $223,800
  • We Want You Back Expanded Support: $322,872
  • World Language Additional Reading Materials: $70,000
  • Youth Language Arts and Advisory Council: $37,420


These funding recommendations aim to address the serious impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on Minneapolis Public Schools students.

They align with MPS’ community driven, long-term vision for our district and are grounded in equity, transparency and accountability.

These recommendations were informed by thoughtful feedback received from Minneapolis parents, partners and community members.

(See full Board of Education, September, 14, 2021 presentation.)

Guiding Principles:  Equity. Engagement.

Ensuring people closest to our students families, teachers, partners and school communities have a significant voice in shaping how this federal money is spent.

MPS Commitments

A commitment to equity that targets funds to students most impacted by the twin pandemics of COVID-19 and systemic barriers to access and opportunity.

A commitment to lift up voices of families, students, partners and community members.

A commitment to transparency and accountability for decision-making and use of all.

What did the community tell us?

  • Virtually all input and recommendations fell into broad themes or categories:
  • Social-emotional and mental health
  • Academic programs to address learning disruption
  • Safe and healthy buildings and facilities
  • Expectations for transparency and accountability
  • Equitable high-quality talent acquisition and maintenance
  • Community collaboration and partnership

How did MPS engage the community?

1. ESSER III Stakeholder Advisory Committee:  Within weeks of learning about the ESSER III funds, convened an advisory committee (staff members, union reps, students and families, and community partners) to help make recommendations to inform the district’s plan.

2. Digital Communications:  Regular emails and online posts drove stakeholders to our webpages, which included a simple feedback form completed and returned by 70 individuals.

3. Tribal Consultation:  A meeting with the Tribal Nations Education Committee (TNEC) to gather input about how the funds could be used to support American Indian students.

4. Direct Community Input:  Partners and  stakeholders provided direct input to the Superintendent and MPS leaders.

Considerations in Addition to Community Feedback

To ensure the MPS plan addresses the immediate needs of students, is aligned with the district’s long term vision and goals, and adheres to state and federal requirements, MPS also considered:

  • MPS Board Values
  • Comprehensive District Design (CDD) Goals
  • Federal Guidance
  • Minnesota Department of Education (MDE) Priorities

Building the Plan

With community feedback in hand, along with other important considerations, Superintendent Graff and his leadership team developed a comprehensive list of potential investments focused on:

  • Student/family need related to COVID-19
  • Alignment with strategic direction developed with extensive community input over the past three years
  • Each individual recommendation was reviewed and prioritized through the lens of professional expertise, community priorities, equity, and expected impact.