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ESSER Convening for Pandemic Recovery Grant Program


Grantees: Please note the following important deadlines:

  • September 30
    • Year 1 (ESSER II funded) ended
  • October 1
    • Year 2 (ESSSER III funded) began
    • GALs for year 2 will be sent soon
  • November 1
    • Request for Funds (RFF) are due through Formsite for expenses through September 30, 2023. After 11/1, you will no longer have access to these funds. 
  • November 15
    • Annual Financial Report (AFR): Due via AFR Smartsheet, which includes a budget workbook with final expenses and a detailed general ledger
    • ESSER II Closeout Docs: Due via ESSER II Closeout Smartsheet
      • Please note – ALL FIELDS ARE REQUIRED and will not allow submission without all certifications checked and files uploaded into the "file upload" section
      • Attach final financial reports, including revenue and expense reports for the award period (the general ledger from the AFR will meet the requirements)
    • Budget Revisions are due via Budget Revision Smartsheet

Annual Financial Report (AFR) Submission  AFR Submission Instructions

ESSER II Closeout Submission  ESSER II Closeout Instructions


    Budget revisions will be accepted and processed within the following windows using the budget revision link. 

    • AFR & Review Window Fall: Nov 15th, 2023
    • Review Window Winter: Jan. 29-Feb. 12, 2024
    • Review Window Spring: May 28-Jun. 11, 2024
    • Final AFR: Sept. 16-30, 2024

    Please reach out to with any questions.

    Overview of the ESSER Convening for Pandemic Recovery (CPR) Grant

    Colorado school districts and schools have worked hard to find thoughtful, creative, and impactful solutions in order to ensure that Colorado's students are able to emerge from the pandemic stronger than before despite the various impacts and unprecedented challenges due to the pandemic. However, limited opportunities exist for leaders to learn from each other on the solutions they have derived and for learnings be gathered and shared across the state. 

    As part of the state’s recovery efforts, it is critical to provide venues for district leaders to convene around the pandemic-related challenges they are facing and for the impactful solutions to be documented. For this reason, the Colorado Department of Education (CDE) has created the ESSER Convening for Pandemic Recovery Grant to ensure that districts across the state have the opportunity to learn from colleagues facing the same challenges as the districts they lead. 

    The Colorado Department of Education will be making up to $150,000 of ARP ESSER III funding available for this program. Eligible applicants are invited to submit applications that meet the needs of their program(s) with a maximum of $50,000 per application.

    Applications will close on March 8, 2023. If interested in applying for this funding opportunity, submit the Intent to Apply by Friday, February 24, 2023, by 11:59 pm MDT. The Intent to Apply is encouraged, but not required to submit an application.

    ESSER Convening for Pandemic Recovery (CPR) Grant

    This program exists to provide funding to provide technical assistance to Colorado LEAs by convening leaders around pandemic-related challenges faced by their districts and schools. The goal of these convenings is to provide a venue for identifying shared challenges, sharing strategies and solutions for addressing such challenges, identifying potential collaborations that could allow districts to jointly address shared challenges, and documenting lessons learned on impactful strategies so that those across the state can benefit from these efforts. Through the technical assistance funded under this program, the stakeholders across the Colorado education community will have the opportunity to learn from each other and work to ensure that all districts across the state are able to emerge from the pandemic stronger than before.

    Eligible entities (as defined below in “Eligible Applicants and Priority Criteria”) may apply for a grant under this program. Grantees must (1) convene leaders from multiple local education agencies (LEAs) around pandemic-related challenges and solutions; and (2) create a final report summarizing the lessons learned by districts in shared challenges. 

    Examples of eligible work include but are not limited to:

    • Identifying the highest-leverage pandemic-related topics/challenges 
    • faced by Colorado districts and schools;
    • Convening district leaders either in-person or virtually, to discuss shared challenges and identified solutions;
    • Communicating to potential district participants about upcoming convenings and next steps/summaries of previous convenings;
    • Supporting cross-district collaborations to address joint pandemic-related challenges; and
    • Creating a report that summarizes the key challenges on which leaders have focused during funded convenings, solutions and strategies shared or identified, and other pertinent findings.

    Eligible Applicants and Priority Criteria:

    Eligible entities may apply for this funding opportunity. The term “eligible entity” means:

    • A local educational agency (public school district),
    • A Board of Cooperative Educational Services (BOCES),    
    • The Charter School Institute,
    • Community-based organization,
    • Indian tribe or tribal organization (as such terms are defined in section 4 of the Indian Self-Determination and Education Act (25 U.S.C. 450b)),
    • Another public or private entity, or
    • A consortium of two or more such agencies. organizations, or entities.

    Note: A group of two or more such agencies, organizations, or entities (listed above) is eligible to apply as a consortium.

    Charter schools may submit a stand-alone application but must receive sign-off from their authorizer. The authorizing district, BOCES, or CSI will be the fiscal agent, if funded. 

    Priority Considerations

    Available grant funding will be distributed to Education Providers with school(s) demonstrating high need based on Priority Criteria. Priority will be given to applications that demonstrate:

    • Applicants with a clear and actionable plan for convening small and/or rural districts;
    • Applicants prepared to lead convenings around educator workforce challenges; and
    • Applicants demonstrating a strong track record in facilitating conversations and/or collaborations between districts.

    Allowable Use of Funds:

    Funds must be expended in a way that aligns with the plans submitted through the application and align with the allowable uses as defined through ARP ESSER III and all expenditures must be allocable, allowable, and reasonable as defined 2 CFR 200. These funds are specific to this program, the ESSER Convening for Pandemic Recovery Grant, and uses of funds for any other purpose are not allowed.

    Examples of unallowable activities/costs include, but are not limited to:

    • Salary and benefits for executives; and
    • The purchase or rehabilitation of real property.

    Indirect funds are allowable under this grant and should be included in the submitted budget. Applicants without an approved indirect rate may use the de minimis rate of 10%. If you have any questions regarding allowable expenses or indirect rates, please reach out to Tricia Miller at for confirmation.

    Review Process and Timeline:

    Applications will be reviewed by CDE staff to ensure they contain all required components. Applicants will be notified of final award status no later than Friday, March 24, 2023, by 11:59 pm MDT.

    Note: This is a competitive process – applicants must score at least 56 points out of the 70 possible points to be approved for funding. Applications that score below 56 points may be asked to submit revisions that would bring the application up to a fundable level. There is no guarantee that submitting an application will result in funding or funding at the requested level. All award decisions are final. Applicants that do not meet the qualifications may reapply for future grant opportunities.

    Submission Process and Deadline:

    Completed applications (including all required elements stated in the Paper Application) must be submitted through the online application form by Wednesday, March 8, 2023, by 11:59 pm.

    Within the online application, applicants will complete Part I with their applicant information and upload attachments. The Excel Budget Workbook must be uploaded to the Smartsheet form at the time of submission.

    Incomplete or late applications will not be considered. Applicants should receive an automated confirmation email from the online system upon submission. If you do not, please email

    Technical Assistance

    Webinar Recording

    Note: Please use passcode $tp4y$zS to enter.

    Application Assistance

    Program Questions:

    Contact Christina Monaco

    Executive Director of Field Services

    Or call 303-981-6513

    Fiscal Related Questions:

    Contact Anissa El Bialy

    Grants Fiscal Management

    Or call 720-215-8961

    Application Process Questions:

    Contact Mandy Christensen

    Grants Program Administration

    Or call 303-957-6217