You are here

ESSER I Rapid Request

ESSER I Rapid Request

The Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) I Rapid Request Application Form.

Overview of ESSER I Rapid Request

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act was enacted in March 2020, which included $13.23 billion in Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) Funds. Colorado was allocated $120,993,782 from the U.S. Department of Education with a minimum of $108,894,404 (90%) allocated to local education agencies (LEAs). The remaining 10% ($12,099,378) were allocated to the Colorado Department of Education (CDE) for state-level purposes.

All ESSER I funds will expire on September 30, 2022 and any funds unobligated on September 30, 2022 will have to be reverted to the federal government. There are some unobligated funds from the 10% portion that could not be used by current grantees. The Colorado Department of Education (CDE) wants as many of these funds to go to Colorado grantees as possible, and have therefore created a simple ESSER I Rapid Request grant program to determine if any grantees have activities or costs that could have been funded with ESSER I funds, but were not.

CDE hosted Office Hours on Thursday, September 22nd from 2:00-3:30 covering the ESSER I Rapid Request process. 

ESSER I Rapid Request Process

The ESSER I Rapid Request is a simple, one-page electronic form that allows you to request additional funding, from ESSER I, to supplement already-approved ESSER I, II and III grant budget line items wherein the costs exceeded your ESSER I, II, or III allocation. Here’s what you need to know:


Grantees who received a 90% allocation OR a Supplemental allocation from ESSER I, II or III are eligible to request.

Review Process and Timeline

Requests are due by 11:59 pm on Sunday, September 25, 2022.

Because the available funds expire on September 30, 2022, expenditures submitted for funding through the Rapid Request must already be obligated by the grantee as of the date of submission of the request. There is no time for new obligations. This means that the expense must be complete–staff paid, supplies purchased, etc.--prior to submitting the Rapid Request.

Requests will be funded based on availability of funds. Applicants will be required to sign an assurance that the approved activity receiving supplemental ESSER I funds through the Rapid Request has been implemented as approved in the original application and that the additional funds will only be used for the same approved activity.

Allowable Budget Activities

  • ESSER I Rapid Request funds may only be used to increase funding for previously approved ESSER I, II and/or III grant budget activities.
  • Grantees will be asked to identify approved budget line items (by line item ID #) from their existing ESSER I, II and/or III grant budgets for which they are requesting additional funding, and will be asked to provide a short narrative. Funds may be requested ONLY to increase the amount of existing approved line items.
    • Example: A district had a 2022 summer school program approved as part of its ESSER II application. Staff costs for the summer program exceeded the amount the district had budgeted in ESSER II. In the Rapid Request submission form, the district may enter the staff line item reference numbers from the ESSER II grant application budget, and request additional funding for these budget line items where the actual costs were above and beyond what was budgeted in ESSER II.
  • All funds awarded through the Rapid Request process are ESSER I funds.
    • In the example above, if the district submits an ESSER I Rapid Request to increase funding for activities approved as part of its ESSER II application and the request is funded, that activity will now be partially funded with ESSER I funds, and partially funded with ESSER II funds.
    • ESSER I Rapid Request funds cannot be used to replace previously approved ESSER funding from another approved ESSER I, II or III application. Instead they are intended to be in addition to the funding included in the approved, relevant ESSER budget line items which may have been paid out of, for example, general funds.

Award and Request for Funds Process

Funds awarded through the ESSER I Rapid Request will come to grantees via a separate Grant Award Letter and grant code 4429, after which, the applicant will have to submit a Request for Funds Form to receive the funds. In addition, the supporting documentation for the expenditure must be submitted in the Request for Funds Form as well. This would include invoices, general ledger, payroll journal (if labor costs), etc.

Application Assistance

Program Questions:

Kate Bartlett

Executive Director of School District Operations

Program Questions:

Nazanin Mohajeri-Nelson

Executive Director of Federal Programs and Supports Unit

Budget/Fiscal Questions:

Jennifer Austin

Grants Fiscal Director

Application Process Questions:

Grants Program Administration Office