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The American Rescue Plan Act and the Opportunity for Schools

Did you know that the average age of a school building is 44 years old? And according to Education Week®, while a majority of schools said that their facilities are in “good” or “excellent” condition, 24% of schools reported that their buildings do not meet those standards.

Out of those surveyed, about a quarter said that the main contributors to the poor ratings are roofing issues. Historically schools have looked to the state for funding, and those funds are distributed to various educational needs – and building conditions don’t always make the list.

Well, the American Rescue Plan Act Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund (ARP ESSER) is a federal aid that provides additional funding to help with a ton of education and education asset needs. So, now might be the time to take another look at that leaky roof.

Use Your Funds before December 31, 2024

Invest in your students by investing in your infrastructure! ESSER funds can be used for a new roof for your school. But in order to have the payment complete by the time ESSER funds expire, you need to start now! See an example of a timeline below. From start to finish, the process can take around 9 months so don’t delay! Ready to get started? We’re here to help!


What is the American Rescue Plan Act?

You might be wondering exactly what the American Rescue Plan Act is. Essentially, it provides nearly $125 billion in financial resources to support K-12 schools in making improvements over the next three and a half years. The economic relief plan sets out to protect schools from state funding cuts and facilitate an equal learning opportunity for all students – especially those in low-income districts.

Before the Act, many K-12 schools have struggled with insufficient funds to facilitate all their buildings’ needs. As schools reopen after the pandemic, it aims to ensure that students return to the classroom with adequate resources and in safe conditions.

How can my school benefit?

States are allocated funds based on a variety of factors at a wide range of contributions:

  • Texas: $12,418,588,778
  • California: $15,068,884,546
  • Kentucky: $2,984,773,157
  • Pennsylvania: $4,996,953,151
  • See full list

 Studies show that, on average, students that transitioned at-home learning are struggling to readjust and realign in the classroom. The Act specifies that at least 20% of the funds must be used to address learning gaps resulting from the pandemic.

Beyond that, the Act is quite flexible in the distribution of aid. The remainder of the money can be used to improve ventilation in school buildings, reduce classes, hire support staff, and more. The American Rescue Plan Act focuses on improving the overall learning environment, which includes the facility itself. That’s where long-needed (and neglected) building maintenance can finally be addressed.


What projects should I look at first?

A new roof can mean a lot for your school building. For much of the day, our schools are the roofs over our kids’ heads. And the American Rescue Plan Act can help to make sure that roof is sound, safe, and sustainable.

Over time, as water leaks and settles into your school building’s roof, mold and mildew can develop. When working to repair the roof structure at your facility, a contractor will identify and eliminate buildups they might find along the way. Plus, it’s essential to ensure that your building has the proper ventilation to both pull in the fresh air and keep heat and moisture out. 


Choose SPF Protection

If you’ve decided to use the Act to get your roof’s act together, you’re going to want to look into Spray Polyurethane Foam or SPF. SPF can be used to thoroughly coat your roof and ensure that your system is free from joints, seams, or holes.

Having an SPF roof on your school building means colossal energy savings – 6.5 R-Value per inch, to be exact! And it’s guaranteed to be free of leaks – so no more sitting the trash can under the ever-dripping spot in the cafeteria. Plus, the aftercare is simple, with an easy patching process for any localized damage and a 30-year warranty for your protection.

 But the most valuable part of the SPF protection is the enhanced air quality that the students will experience inside the building. Easy breathing means enhanced learning. And that’s what the American Rescue Plan is all about – improving the quality of learning.

Infrared Roof Scan For American Rescue Plan Act

If you’re in charge of the facilities at your school, IRC is here to help. Many of the problems on school roofs can be hidden to the naked eye. Our advanced roof scan technology can give you peace of mind by letting you see what’s below the surface.

Update Your School’s Roof NOW with ESSER Funds!

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