Facebook Twitter

See how much federal coronavirus rescue money your Colorado school district will get

Staff distribute laptops to families at Denver’s Joe Shoemaker School on March 25, 2020, as schools prepare for remote learning.

Staff distribute laptops to families at Denver’s Joe Shoemaker School on March 25, 2020, as schools prepare for remote learning.

Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite

Colorado school districts will share $121 million in federal funds to offset the costs of responding to coronavirus closures, including laptop purchases, development of new curriculum for online learning, and extra cleaning of school buildings.

The money comes from the $13 billion Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund, part of the CARES Act federal stimulus package. The money goes to states, which then allocate it to districts based on how many students in poverty the districts serve. 

The Colorado Department of Education gets to keep 10% of the state’s K-12 portion, about $12 million, to support districts’ efforts. State education leaders want this money to have a real impact, but they’re still figuring out the best way to do that.

“This money should be used in a rifle rather than a shotgun approach,” said State Board Member Steve Durham at a meeting this week. “We should target it to solving specific problems that this amount of money would solve.”

Durham made particular note of the more than 65,000 students who don’t have home internet access, weeks after schools switched to online learning. Board Member Joyce Rankin asked if the money could be used to develop infrastructure that would outlast the pandemic. 

The state’s allocation isn’t enough to solve big problems, Education Commissioner Katy Anthes told the State Board.

“These are temporary dollars to solve temporary problems,” she said. “It’s about $12 million, and that can’t build broadband.”

It might buy hot spots, though. Colorado education officials are asking for feedback on how they should spend the money in this survey.

Many school districts have held back on saying how they would spend the money, saying they are waiting for additional state guidance. Part of that guidance will include ways districts should share money with their charter schools. The state Charter School Institute gets its own allocation. 

U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos has issued guidance directing school districts to share relief money with private schools as well. Colorado education officials say they have had inquiries from some private schools, and they’re still working out guidelines for sharing money. At least one state, Indiana, has said it won’t follow federal guidelines.

Denver Public Schools plans to use its funds to offset costs associated with cleaning and disinfecting buildings, providing meals that are not subsidized, paying employees who could not work during closures, and buying curriculum and supplies for remote learning, a spokesperson said.

School districts can use the money to cover expenses they already incurred, but they have to fall into certain categories. Those include providing services to vulnerable students, coordinating preparations and response with other districts and government entities, providing mental health services, purchasing technology for remote learning, buying cleaning supplies, and training staff on sanitation practices. 

The CARES Act also includes money for preschool, higher education, and a dedicated fund that governors can use to address the education needs of their choosing. Gov. Jared Polis has not yet said how he’ll spend Colorado’s $44 million share.

While welcome, the federal relief does not begin to cover the full cost of the coronavirus response. School board members, college presidents, and lawmakers have all signed letters to Congress asking for additional federal help. School districts are all planning for major budget cuts even as they prepare for a combination of in-person and online classes in the fall and expect students to have greater needs than ever. 

See how much each school district is getting in the searchable table below.

Colorado CARES Act School District Allocations
County District Amount of allocation
Adams Mapleton 1 $926,989
Adams Adams 12 Five Star Schools $3,575,675
Adams Adams County 14 $1,656,681
Adams Brighton 27J $1,025,191
Adams Bennett 29J $69,299
Adams Strasburg 31J $49,326
Adams Westminster 50 $2,065,454
Alamosa Alamosa Re-11J $670,039
Alamosa Sangre De Cristo Re-22J $79,119
Arapahoe Englewood 1 $486,648
Arapahoe Sheridan 2 $666,077
Arapahoe Cherry Creek 5 $3,452,352
Arapahoe Littleton 6 $346,895
Arapahoe Deer Trail 26J $21,373
Arapahoe Aurora Public Schools $8,430,123
Arapahoe Byers 32J $303,289
Archuleta Archuleta County 50 Jt $295,001
Baca Walsh Re-1 $34,614
Baca Pritchett Re-3 $7,813
Baca Springfield Re-4 $94,673
Baca Vilas Re-5 $12,421
Baca Campo Re-6 $0
Bent Las Animas Re-1 $478,561
Bent Mc Clave Re-2 $31,527
Boulder St Vrain Valley Re 1J $2,493,668
Boulder Boulder Valley Re 2 $1,527,577
Chaffee Buena Vista R-31 $130,740
Chaffee Salida R-32 $119,239
Cheyenne Kit Carson R-1 $10,890
Cheyenne Cheyenne County Re-5 $39,619
Clear Creek Clear Creek Re-1 $77,929
Conejos North Conejos Re-1J $240,498
Conejos Sanford 6J $60,246
Conejos South Conejos Re-10 $116,812
Costilla Centennial R-1 $127,981
Costilla Sierra Grande R-30 $136,371
Crowley Crowley County Re-1-J $188,103
Custer Consolidated C-1 $97,569
Delta Delta County 50(J) $788,092
Denver Denver Public Schools $22,908,618
Dolores Dolores County Re No.2 $40,298
Douglas Douglas County Re 1 $1,279,914
Eagle Eagle County Re 50 $488,267
Elbert Elizabeth C-1 $119,554
Elbert Kiowa C-2 $25,516
Elbert Big Sandy 100J $29,058
Elbert Elbert 200 $17,421
Elbert Agate 300 $7,620
El Paso Calhan RJ-1 $69,205
El Paso Harrison 2 $3,372,970
El Paso Widefield 3 $1,221,390
El Paso Fountain 8 $1,086,768
El Paso Colorado Springs 11 $5,927,394
El Paso Cheyenne Mountain 12 $213,607
El Paso Manitou Springs 14 $124,377
El Paso Academy 20 $861,970
El Paso Ellicott 22 $143,987
El Paso Peyton 23 Jt $61,393
El Paso Hanover 28 $43,385
El Paso Lewis-Palmer 38 $290,578
El Paso Falcon 49 $1,284,287
El Paso Edison 54 Jt $16,549
El Paso Miami/Yoder 60 Jt $83,404
Fremont Canon City Re-1 $732,267
Fremont Florence Re-2 $282,588
Fremont Cotopaxi Re-3 $46,508
Garfield Roaring Fork Re-1 $410,296
Garfield Garfield Re-2 $493,875
Garfield Garfield 16 $130,458
Gilpin Gilpin County Re-1 $17,829
Grand West Grand 1-Jt. $60,784
Grand East Grand 2 $94,148
Gunnison Gunnison Watershed Re1J $184,546
Hinsdale Hinsdale County Re 1 $18,672
Huerfano Huerfano Re-1 $211,667
Huerfano La Veta Re-2 $87,156
Jackson North Park R-1 $32,173
Jefferson Jefferson County R-1 $7,036,605
Kiowa Eads Re-1 $22,965
Kiowa Plainview Re-2 $15,655
Kit Carson Arriba-Flagler C-20 $25,118
Kit Carson Hi-Plains R-23 $15,428
Kit Carson Stratton R-4 $32,155
Kit Carson Bethune R-5 $14,782
Kit Carson Burlington Re-6J $129,939
Lake Lake County R-1 $189,618
La Plata Durango 9-R $437,998
La Plata Bayfield 10 Jt-R $80,699
La Plata Ignacio 11 Jt $92,257
Larimer Poudre R-1 $2,160,805
Larimer Thompson R-2J $1,290,787
Larimer Park (Estes Park) R-3 $229,356
Las Animas Trinidad 1 $298,250
Las Animas Primero Reorganized 2 $31,251
Las Animas Hoehne Reorganized 3 $60,838
Las Animas Aguilar Reorganized 6 $64,646
Las Animas Branson Reorganized 82 $10,575
Las Animas Kim Reorganized 88 $1,102
Lincoln Genoa-Hugo C113 $28,690
Lincoln Limon Re-4J $78,262
Lincoln Karval Re-23 $17,054
Logan Valley Re-1 $341,963
Logan Frenchman Re-3 $14,226
Logan Buffalo Re-4 $16,810
Logan Plateau Re-5 $10,098
Mesa De Beque 49Jt $12,233
Mesa Plateau Valley 50 $48,794
Mesa Mesa County Valley 51 $3,409,529
Mineral Creede Consolidated 1 $1,236
Moffat Moffat County Re:No 1 $261,396
Montezuma Montezuma-Cortez Re-1 $718,384
Montezuma Dolores Re-4A $66,956
Montezuma Mancos Re-6 $87,571
Montrose Montrose County Re-1J $1,007,381
Montrose West End Re-2 $52,869
Morgan Brush Re-2(J) $144,626
Morgan Fort Morgan Re-3 $402,371
Morgan Weldon Valley Re-20(J) $11,465
Morgan Wiggins Re-50(J) $87,834
Otero East Otero R-1 $455,329
Otero Rocky Ford R-2 $319,582
Otero Manzanola 3J $63,304
Otero Fowler R-4J $77,173
Otero Cheraw 31 $18,834
Otero Swink 33 $54,547
Ouray Ouray R-1 $18,237
Ouray Ridgway R-2 $26,405
Park Platte Canyon 1 $98,329
Park Park County Re-2 $88,606
Phillips Holyoke Re-1J $70,279
Phillips Haxtun Re-2J $25,634
Pitkin Aspen 1 $31,139
Prowers Granada Re-1 $43,596
Prowers Lamar Re-2 $369,916
Prowers Holly Re-3 $57,061
Prowers Wiley Re-13 Jt $29,345
Pueblo Pueblo City 60 $4,697,577
Pueblo Pueblo County Rural 70 $864,966
Rio Blanco Meeker Re1 $76,613
Rio Blanco Rangely Re-4 $32,805
Rio Grande Del Norte C-7 $176,593
Rio Grande Monte Vista C-8 $228,592
Rio Grande Sargent Re-33J $34,253
Routt Hayden Re-1 $20,388
Routt Steamboat Springs Re-2 $98,181
Routt South Routt Re 3 $99,765
Saguache Mountain Valley Re 1 $67,015
Saguache Moffat 2 $101,895
Saguache Center 26 Jt $314,694
San Juan Silverton 1 $16,549
San Miguel Telluride R-1 $54,037
San Miguel Norwood R-2J $42,162
Sedgwick Julesburg Re-1 $61,871
Sedgwick Platte Valley Re-3 $20,067
Summit Summit Re-1 $182,739
Teller Cripple Creek-Victor Re-1 $73,125
Teller Woodland Park Re-2 $218,375
Washington Akron R-1 $58,890
Washington Arickaree R-2 $14,745
Washington Otis R-3 $17,995
Washington Lone Star 101 $7,233
Washington Woodlin R-104 $22,651
Weld Gilcrest Re-1 $238,230
Weld Eaton Re-2 $108,706
Weld Keenesburg Re-3(J) $378,049
Weld Windsor Re-4 $201,970
Weld Weld County SD Re-5J $175,701
Weld Greeley 6 $3,480,346
Weld Platte Valley Re-7 $102,868
Weld Weld County Re-8 $315,983
Weld Ault-Highland Re-9 $114,017
Weld Briggsdale Re-10 $10,191
Weld Prairie Re-11 $0
Weld Pawnee Re-12 $13,980
Yuma Yuma 1 $114,592
Yuma Wray RD-2 $94,832
Yuma Idalia RJ-3 $24,406
Yuma Liberty J-4 $776
Colorado School Deaf/Blind $50,973
Charter School Institute $1,502,146
Colorado statewide total $120,993,782
Colorado Department of Education $12,000,000
Source: Colorado Department of Education
Gabrielle LaMarr LeMee

The Latest
DPS had previously refused to release the agreement, which says the district will pay Anderson $3,500 in exchange for agreeing not to sue over a 2021 investigation.
The latest teachers union endorsement helps define the race, which has been in flux due in part to candidates dropping out or jumping in later than usual.
CU Boulder’s free college program now applies to students who are specifically within its engineering program
Denver gives newly arrived migrant families 30 days of free housing. When time is up, some families struggle to find somewhere else to go.
Before the rule change, some preschool providers said they had to turn away families who hadn’t filled out the state’s online application.
Ballenger’s exit leaves three candidates vying for an at-large seat representing the entire city.