Category Government Programs
Title ESEA Title IV, Part A Funding and Equitable Services Requirements
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ESEA Title IV, Part A Funding and Equitable Services Requirements

On September 28, 2018, the President signed the Department of Defense and Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations Act, 2019 (Public Law 115-245), which provides funding for the Department of Education through September 30, 2019.  The 2019 appropriations will increase the amount of funding for the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), Title IV, Part A, Student Support and Academic Enrichment grants to $1.17 billion from the initial appropriation of $400 million under the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2017.  With the substantial increase in funding for these programs it is important that private and public school officials understand the equitable services requirements that apply to Title IV, Part A.

The Uniform Provisions of Title VIII, located at section 8501(a)(1) of the ESEA, apply to Title IV, Part A programs.  Thus, a state educational agency (SEA), local educational agency (LEA), educational service agency, consortium of those agencies, or another entity receiving financial assistance under Title IV, Part A has the responsibility to provide equitable services to private school children, teachers and other educational personnel consistent with the number of eligible children in areas served by such agency.  LEAs are required to consult in a timely and meaningful way with private school officials on a number of issues related to the Title IV, Part A program, including how their students' needs will be identified, the services that the LEA will provide to meet those needs, the amount of funding available to provide services, and how the services will be assessed (Section 8501(c)).  This consultation must take place before the LEA makes any decisions that impact the participation of private school students and teachers in the Title IV, Part A program (Section 8501(c)(3)). 

Title IV, Part A also requires LEAs to assure that they will spend certain percentages of their funds on each of three statutory content areas.  The statute states that LEAs must "use not less than 20 percent of funds received under this subpart" for each of sections 4107 (well-rounded education) and 4108 (safe and healthy students).  They must also "use a portion of funds received under this subpart" for section 4109 (effective use of technology).  This language -- "funds received under this subpart"-- indicates that these distribution requirements apply to an LEA's total allocation.  Accordingly, an LEA must meet the percentage distribution requirements based on its total allocation. 

LEAs have also asked whether the distribution requirements must, in addition, be met separately with the portion of funds spent for equitable services for private school students.  There is no such requirement in the statute.  The distribution requirements apply only to the LEA's total allocation. Information regarding the percentage distribution requirements is also provided in ONPE's October Ombudsman Update

Finally, while the Title IV, Part A statute does not expressly prohibit any specific use of state funds, a state must fulfill its obligation to provide equitable services with any funds reserved under section 4104(a)(3).  All funds must be used for activities designed to meet the purposes of the program and may include activities described in section 4104(b).

Additional Resources

Elementary and Secondary Education Act, as amended by the Every Student Succeeds Act

ESSA Fiscal Changes and Equitable Services Guidance (November 2016)

ESSA Title IV, Part A Guidance - Student Support and Academic Enrichment Program (October 2016)

ESSA Title IV, Part A Student Support and Academic Enrichment (SSAE) Grants Webinars and Resources 

Reprinted from the Office of NonPublic Education      

LLU 29.2

Notice: This article is designed to provide accurate and authoritative information in regard to the subject matter covered. It has been provided to member schools with the understanding that ACSI is not engaged in rendering legal, accounting, tax, or other professional services. If legal advice or other expert assistance is required, the services of a competent professional should be sought. Laws vary by jurisdiction, and the specific application of laws to particular facts requires the advice of an attorney.  

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