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What California Schools Need to Know About the EANS Program

by Matt Gard, Matt Petroski
March 18, 2021

As part of the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations (CRRSA) Act, 2021, Public Law 116-260, Congress set aside $2.75 billion of the Governor’s Emergency Education Relief (GEER) Fund specifically to provide emergency assistance to students and teachers in non-public schools through the Emergency Assistance to Non-Public Schools (EANS) program.

The EANS program was created to help eligible non-public schools address the impact the COVID-19 pandemic has had, and continues to have, on non-public school students and teachers in California.

Key Details of the Program

Eligibility

For purposes of the EANS program, an eligible non-public school is an elementary or secondary school that meets these requirements:

  • Is nonprofit (including faith based)
  • Is accredited, licensed or otherwise operates in accordance with state law
  • Was in existence prior to March 13, 2020 (the date the president declared the national emergency due to COVID-19)
  • Did not, and will not, apply for and receive a loan under the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) that is made on or after December 27, 2020

Purpose

The purpose of the EANS program is to provide services or assistance to eligible non-public schools to address the educational disruptions caused by COVID-19. This is a separate program within the GEER II Fund. The state education agency (SEA) will administer the program and provide the services to eligible non-public schools under the EANS program.

A non-public school may apply to receive services and assistance to address educational disruptions resulting from COVID-19 for:

  • Expenditures that support immediate need
  • Supplies to sanitize, disinfect and clean school facilities
  • Personal protective equipment (PPE)
  • Improving ventilation systems, including windows or portable air purification systems
  • Training and professional development for staff on sanitization, the use of PPE and minimizing the spread of infectious diseases
  • Physical barriers to facilitate social distancing
  • Other materials, supplies or equipment recommended by the CDC for reopening and operation of school facilities to effectively maintain health and safety
  • Expanding capacity to administer coronavirus testing to effectively monitor and suppress the virus
  • Durable Goods:
    • Educational technology
    • Portable air purification systems
    • Leasing sites or spaces to ensure social distancing
    • Reasonable transportation costs

Although the following are allowable services or assistance under the EANS program, the SEA may not reimburse a non-public school for:

  • Improvements to ventilation systems (including windows), except for portable air purification systems, which may be reimbursed
  • Any expenses reimbursed through a loan guaranteed under the PPP prior to December 27, 2020
  • Staff training and professional development on sanitization, the use of PPE, and minimizing the spread of COVID-19
  • Developing instructional plans, including curriculum development, for remote or hybrid learning or to address learning loss
  • Initiating and maintaining education and support services or assistance for remote or hybrid learning or to address learning loss

While it may not reimburse a non-public school for the above expenses, the SEA may provide these services or assistance directly to a non-public school or through a contract with an individual, association, agency or organization.

Application for Funding

On February 22, 2021, Governor Newsom submitted a signed certification and agreement for California’s EANS award. Non-public schools are required to submit an application to receive services or assistance through the EANS program. An application for funding will be posted to the California Department of Education’s webpage (Emergency Assistance to Non-Public Schools Program - Federal Stimulus Funding (CA Dept of Education)) within 30 days of California’s receipt of the EANS funds. We are waiting for additional information on the timing and process for applying for EANS assistance.

The Takeaway

The details of the application process and when it will be open are not yet available. We continue to monitor developments but recommend that organizations move to identify whether they qualify for the program. Schools that took a first draw PPP loan prior to December 27, 2020, remain eligible. However, if a school qualified for and has taken (or plans to take) a second draw PPP loan after December 27, 2020, the school will not be able to participate in the EANS program.

If you have any questions or need help, contact our experts.

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Authors
Matt Gard - Partner, Audit - San Ramon CA | Armanino
Partner
Matt Petroski, Director, Tax - Armanino
Director
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