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  • Writer's pictureJillian Helding

U.S. Department of Education Extends CARES Act Spending Deadline for Schools

Last month, the U.S. Department of Education released updated guidance on the spending of $13.2 billion in K-12 relief funding included as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act passed in early 2020. The department granted districts and states 120 additional days to spend funds past the September 30 deadline, with the option to apply for up to 14 months of additional time beyond that.

In a letter from the Office of Elementary and Secondary Education (OESE), the Office of the Secretary wrote, "the Department is offering a liquidation extension request process for immediate use by grantees. This process ensures strong accountability for the use of funds and important safeguards for States and subgrantees.

When requesting late liquidation of CARES Act funds, grantees must submit an extension request to the Department’s Office of State and Grantee Relations (SGR) on their own behalf or on behalf of their subgrantees. A grantee requesting a liquidation extension for its subgrantees must assure that it will continue to conduct oversight of the subgrantees, attest to the allowability of the expenses to be liquidated, maintain documentation to support the expenditures’ timely obligation, and attest that included subgrantees are low-risk entities."

Grantees are strongly urged to send liquidation requests by December 31, 2022. Requests should be submitted using the Department of Education's Liquidation Extension Request Template to the State's OESE mailbox (

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