Arkansas Department of Education Division of Elementary and Secondary Education 2020 ESSA Waiver for Federal Funds

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Memo Number
Memo Date
Memo Type
Public School Accountability
Regulatory Authority
Response Required
Federal Programs; Superintendents; Assistant Superintendent; Principals; General Business Managers; Bookkeepers; Equity Coordinators (Disability/Race/Gender/National Origin); District Coordinators (ALE; Homeless; ESOL; SDFS & Foster); Parent Involvement Coordinators/Facilitators

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Memo Text

On April 6, 2020, The Arkansas Division of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) requested a waiver from the U. S. Department of Education for federal funds extension, carry-over, Title IV requirements, and professional development (letter requesting waiver).  The waiver was tentatively approved (4/7/2020) with a formal approval from the U.S. Department of Education expected in the next few weeks. 


The waiver addresses four (4) key areas for federal funds:


  1. Carryover limitation in section 1127(b) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA) for Federal fiscal year (FY) 2019 Title I, Part A funds (i.e., the Title I, Part A funds that will become carryover funds on October 1, 2020): the requirement that limits an SEA’s ability to grant to its LEAs a waiver of the 15 percent Title I, Part A carryover limitation in section 1127(a) more than once every three years. 


  2. Period of availability of funds in section 421(b) of the General Education Provisions Act (GEPA): to extend the period of availability of FY 2018 funds for programs in which the SEA participates under its approved consolidated State plan until September 30, 2021. The programs are: 
    • Title I, Part A of the ESEA (Improving Basic Programs Operated by LEAs), including the portions of the SEA’s Title I, Part A award used to carry out section 1003 school improvement, section 1003A direct student services, if applicable, and Title I, Part D, Subpart 2 
    • Title I, Part B of the ESEA (State Assessment Formula Grants)
    • Title I, Part C of the ESEA (Education of Migratory Children) 
    • Title I, Part D, Subpart 1 of the ESEA (Prevention and Intervention Programs for Children and Youth Who Are Neglected, Delinquent, or At Risk) 
    • Title II, Part A of the ESEA (Supporting Effective Instruction) 
    • Title III, Part A of the ESEA (English Language Acquisition, Language Enhancement, and Academic Achievement) 
    • Title IV, Part A of the ESEA (Student Support and Academic Enrichment Grants) 
    • Title IV, Part B of the ESEA (21st Century Community Learning Centers) 
    • Title V, Part B, Subpart 2 of the ESEA (Rural and Low-Income School Program) 
    • McKinney-Vento Education for Homeless Children and Youth Program 


  3. The following requirements in Title IV, Part A of the ESEA (check those that apply). Note: These requirements are only applicable to LEAs that received $30,000 or more in Title IV, Part A funds:
    • Needs assessment requirements in section 4106(d) for the 2019-2020 school year. 
    • Content area spending requirements in section 4106(e)(2)(C), (D), and (E): the requirements to use a minimum percentage of Title IV, Part A funds for activities under sections 4107, 4108 and 4109 for FY 2019 funds and any available FY 2018 carryover funds. 
    • Spending limitation in section 4109(b): the 15 percent limit on the use of funds under section 4109 to purchase technology infrastructure for FY 2019 funds and any available FY 2018 carryover funds. 


  4. The definition of professional development in section 8101(42) of the ESEA for the 2019-2020 school year.



Learn more about the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA).


Please submit public comments regarding the waiver to




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