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ESSER K-8 Mathematics Curricula and K-3 READ Act Instructional Programming Grant


The application window for the ESSER K-8 Mathematics Curricula and K-3 READ Act Instructional Programming Grant has closed.


Significant interruptions to in-person learning due to the COVID-19 pandemic have led to potentially devastating and long-lasting negative impacts on student achievement, impacting every part of Colorado society. These negative impacts on student achievement are not equal; students furthest from privilege are at risk of the most opportunity loss. Research suggests that while all students may fall behind as much as seven months because of interruptions to in-person learning due to the COVID-19 pandemic, students who are identified as most in need may fall behind as much as ten months, exacerbating already entrenched inequities. Responding to learning opportunity loss and the widening of opportunity gaps could be the greatest challenge our state faces over the next few years, and the state has an urgent and immediate need to provide additional support to ensure students are well prepared for the future.

One of the most critical strategies available to schools and districts is to have high-quality, standards-aligned K-8 mathematics curricula and K-3 READ Act-approved instructional programs to ensure Colorado students have superior educational experiences. Research has shown that such curricular materials are a vital component to ensuring that students graduate from high school ready to succeed in whatever may follow—school, work, and life.

As such, the Colorado Department of Education (CDE) is creating a grant program that will support districts in purchasing such K-8 mathematics curricula and K-3 READ Act-approved instructional programs so as to ensure that Colorado students and schools—particularly those most impacted by the pandemic—are able to accelerate the completion of lost or unfinished learning and emerge from the pandemic stronger than before. This program will be funded under the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) state reserve.

ESSER K-8 Mathematics Curricula & K-3 READ Act Instructional Program Grant Program

This program exists to provide grants to local education providers (LEPs) to support the purchase of high-quality, standards-aligned K-8 mathematics curricula and K-3 READ Act-approved instructional programs. An LEP or group of providers (as defined below in “Eligible Applicants and Priority Criteria”) may apply for a grant.

Eligible Core K-8 Mathematics Curricula for this grant program:

  • Elementary School (Kindergarten through Fifth Grade)
    • Bridges in Mathematics (K-5, 2015)
    • enVision Mathematics Common Core (K-8, 2020-2021)
    • (Added 3/30/22) Fishtank Plus Math (3-8, 2021)
    • Eureka Math (K-5, 2015)
    • HMH Into Math (K-8, 2020)
    • HMH Math Expressions (K-5, 2018)
    • (Added 3/30/22) ORIGO Stepping Stones 2.0 (K-6, 2022)
    • i-Ready Classroom Mathematics (K-5, 2020)
    • (Added 4/11/22) Illustrative Math (K-5, Imagine Learning (f/k/a LearnZillion) 2021 or Kendall Hunt 2021) 
    • Ready Common Core Mathematics (K-8, 2017)
    • Reveal Math (K-5, 2022)
    • Zearn (K-5, 2018)
  • Middle School (Sixth through Eighth Grade)
    • Agile Mind (6-8, 2016)
    • Carnegie Learning Middle School Math Solution (6-8, 2018)
    • Core Curriculum by MidSchoolMath (5-8, 2021)
    • EdGems Math (6-8, 2018)
    • enVision Mathematics Common Core (K-8, 2020-2021)
    • (Added 3/30/22) Fishtank Plus Math (3-8, 2021)
    • HMH Into Math (K-8, 2020)
    • i-Ready Classroom Mathematics (6-8, 2021)
    • Illustrative Math (6-8, Kendall Hunt 2019, LearnZillion 2019, or McGraw-Hill 2020)
    • OpenUp Resources 6-8 Math (6-8, 2017)
    • Ready Common Core Mathematics (K-8, 2017)
    • Reveal Math (6-8, 2020)

Eligible CORE READ Act Instructional Programs (Kindergarten through third grade)

  • Grades Kindergarten through Third
    • Amplify - CKLA (2017)
    • Benchmark Education - Benchmark Workshop (2021)
    • Benchmark Education - Benchmark Advance (2022)
    • Benchmark Education - Benchmark Advelante (2022) Spanish Program
    • Houghton Mifflin - Arriba la Lectura (2020) Spanish Program
    • Houghton Mifflin - Into Reading (2020)
    • McGraw Hill - Maravillas (2020) Spanish Program
    • McGraw Hill - Open Court Reading (2016)
    • McGraw Hill, Reading Mastery Transformations (2021)

    • McGraw Hill - Wonders (2017)
    • McGraw Hill - Wonders (2020)
    • McGraw Hill - Wonders (2023)
    • Savvas Learning Company - myView Literacy Common Core 2020 Enhanced Edition (2020)

    • Spalding - The Writing Road to Reading (2003)
  • Grades Kindergarten through Second
    • Benchmark Education - Benchmark Advance (2021)
    • Center for the Collaborative Classroom - Being a Reader, Second Edition (2021)
    • Center for Collaborative Classroom - Collaborative Literacy (2016)
    • LearnZillion & EL Education - EL Education (2017)
    • Open Up Resources - EL Education
    • Zaner Bloser - The Superkids Reading Program (2017)
  • Grades First through Third
    • McGraw Hill - Maravillas (2017) Spanish Program

Additional Resources

Note: In January of 2022, CDE completed a review of additional program materials. New materials may be added in March of 2022. Please reach out to if there are questions related to potential new material submissions.

Eligible Applicants

LEPs are eligible to apply for this opportunity. A group of local education providers (listed below) may also apply jointly as a consortium. An eligible LEP is:

  • A School District on behalf of all or a subset of schools;
    • A non-charter school may not submit a standalone application outside of their district.
  • A Board of Cooperative Services (BOCES);
  • A Charter School authorized by a School District;
  • A Charter School authorized by the Charter School Institute;
  • A Facility School; or
  • The Colorado School for the Deaf and Blind.

Note: A charter school’s authorizer will be the fiscal agent, if funded.

Priority Considerations:

This program is designed to support LEPs in the purchase of high-quality, standards-aligned core K-8 mathematics curricula and K-3 READ Act-approved curricular materials. Available grant funding will be distributed to eligible applicants based on the application rubric described in “Application Scoring”. Priority will be given to LEPs meeting the following priority considerations:

  • The LEP is willing to join CDE in supporting the purchase of the mathematics and READ-Act approved curricula/instructional programs by contributing LEP funds to the purchase of the selected curricular materials in addition to those requested as part of this grant application.
  • The LEP serves a high percentage (based on exceeding the statewide enrollment percentages) of students in one or more of the following underserved student groups and have demonstrated academic need (based on recent state or local assessment data) for the student group(s):
    • Students eligible for free or reduced lunch (the statewide enrollment percentage is 41% based on 2019-2020 October Count data);
    • Students with disabilities (the statewide enrollment percentage is 12% based on 2020-2021 data);
    • English language learners as defined by Non-English Proficient (NEP) and Limited English Proficient (LEP) students (the statewide enrollment percentage is 10.4% based on 2021 October Count data); and/or
    • Black or African American, Hispanic/Latino and/or American Indian or Alaskan Native students (the statewide enrollment percentages are 4.5% for Black or African American, 34.5% for Hispanic/Latino, and 0.6% for American Indian or Alaskan Native based on 2021 October Count data).
  • The LEP is designated as rural or small rural by CDE.
  • The ESSER K-8 Mathematics Curricula & K-3 READ Act Instructional Program Grant Program is focused on serving students most in need as identified by one of the criteria below:
    • Serving students who spent more than 50% of the 2020-2021 school year in remote learning; and/or
    • Serving students in schools assigned with a Priority Improvement or Turnaround plan (based on 2021 designations)

Where available, CDE has compiled data around the priority considerations above to best support LEPs with the submission process. The compiled data is available here.

Allowable Use of Funds:

Allowable grant activities are limited to the purchase of approved high-quality, standards-aligned K-8 Mathematics and K-3 READ Act-approved core curricula/instructional programs (as described in “Purpose and Program Activities”) and curriculum-based professional learning.

An LEP may make a request to CDE to use grant money for purposes other than those specified above if the proposed use of the grant money increases the effectiveness of the implementation of the approve high-quality, standards-aligned curricular materials. If an LEP already uses approved curricular materials, they may apply for funds to support inclusion in the networked improvement communities (NICs) and for curriculum-based professional learning. These funds are specific to this program, ESSER K-8 Mathematics Curricula & K-3 READ Act Instructional Program Grant Program, and uses of funds for any other purpose are not allowed. Some of the unallowable expenditure categories may include capital expenditures, food costs, giveaways, or other items. If you have any question regarding allowable expenses, please reach out to Steven Kaleda ( for confirmation.

Update (3/30/2022): In alignment with the spending of other ESSER funds, awards under this grant can be used retroactively to cover allowable expenses incurred any time since March 13, 2020.

Review Process and Timeline:

Applications will be reviewed by CDE staff and peer reviewers to ensure they contain all required components. Applicants will be notified of final award status no later than Wednesday, June 1, 2022, at 11:59pm MDT.

Note: This is a competitive process – applicants must score at least 35 points out of the 50 possible points to be approved for funding. Additional points are awarded for prioritized high-need districts, schools, and student populations. Applications that score below 35 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:

An application webinar was held and recorded on Tuesday, February 22nd, from 3:30-4:30pm

Applications must be completed (including all elements outlined below) and submitted through the online application form on the CDE Website by Friday, April 29, 2022, by 11:59pm MDT. The Excel Budget Workbook and Program Assurances Form must also be uploaded to the Smartsheet form at the time of submission.

Application resources and required documents to include in the submission are available on CDE’s Curricula and Instructional Program Grant webpage. 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

Application Assistance

Program Questions:
Contact Raymond Johnson, Ph.D.
Mathematics Content Specialist
Or call 303-866-6582

Fiscal Questions:

Contact Robert Hawkins
Lead Grants Fiscal Analyst
Or call 303-866-6775

Application Process Questions:
Contact Kim Burnham
Or call 720-607-1495