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CARES Grant

The Arkansas Colleges of Health Education has received assistance from the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) in the following forms:

HEERF 1

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act or, CARES Act was passed by Congress on March 27th, 2020. This bill allotted $2.2 trillion to provide fast and direct economic aid to the American people negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Of that money, approximately $14 billion was given to the Office of Postsecondary Education as the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund, or HEERF.

 SECTION 18004(a)(1)

The Arkansas Colleges of Health Education (ACHE) received a total allocation of $47,138 in emergency relief funds to address the pressing financial needs due to the disruption of campus operations from coronavirus that was authorized by the Secretary of Education under Section 18004(a)(1) of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act).  At least 50% of these funds allocated had to be provided to students as an emergency financial aid grant for their expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to coronavirus, such as food, housing, course materials, technology, health care, and child-care expenses (referred to as Student Portion). The other 50% of these funds allocated could be used by the institution to cover any costs associated with significant changes to the delivery of instruction due to the coronavirus with a few exceptions (referred to as Institutional Portion).

ACHE elected to provide the Institutional Portion of funds to eligible students based upon their need who had experienced expenses related to disruption of campus operations due to coronavirus, which resulted in a total of $47,138 in emergency grant funds being disbursed. An application process was used to determine eligible students, their level of need and award amounts needed.

STUDENT PORTION

The Arkansas Colleges of Health Education acknowledges they signed and returned to the Dept of Education the Recipient’s Funding Certification and Agreement Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act with the assurance that we have used no less than 50 percent of the funds received under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act to provide Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students. The total amount requested and received from the Dept of Ed was $23,569, pursuant to the Certification and Agreement for Emergency Financial Aid Grant to Students.

ACHE received access to draw down the funds on April 25, 2020. As of May 25, 2020, the total amount of Emergency Financial Aid Grants distributed to students under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act of May 25, 2020 is $23,569 which was distributed to fifty-five students in the form of a CARES1 GRANT. Current students who wished to apply for the emergency grants completed an online application form. The COVID-19 Emergency Grant Task Force reviewed submitted applications to determine eligibility and to categorize eligible applicants into three tier levels of need using a numeric rubric. There were fifty-seven applications submitted, for which one student did not have any need and the other student withdrew their application. Emergency Grant Offers were provided to 55 students.

Monetary amounts of awards were determined for each student by using a base amount of $750 for awarded students who fell into the High Need Tier and the remaining amount was split into approximately two-thirds’ for students who fell into the Moderate Need Tier and approximately one-thirds’ for students who fell into the Low Need Tier.

Please see the below distribution chart for the amounts awarded, number of students in the three tier levels and total amount disbursed for each tier level for CARES1 Grant funds.

CARES1 GRANT DISTRIBUTION CHART

Award AmountsTier LevelsNumber of StudentsTotal Disbursed
$750.00High10$7,500.00
$468.14Moderate23$10,767.22
$240.99Low22$5,301.78
Total55$23,569.00

ACHE provided students with the following instructions, directions and guidance concerning the Emergency Financial Aid Grants:

  • Availability of funds and application process was announced in the required virtual Town Hall meeting on April 17, 2020 that began at 2:00 p.m. central time from President Kim who stressed that students who apply must have experienced expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to coronavirus. At 4:00 p.m. Students Services e-mailed current students the online link to apply for the emergency grant funds with the following message:
      • The Arkansas Colleges of Health Education (ACHE) hopes you and your family are staying safe and healthy while managing these very challenging times in response to the current health crisis. Students who have experienced financial hardship due to COVID-19 are eligible to apply for assistance through ACHE’s COVID-19 Emergency Grant, which is subject to availability of funds. This funding is made available to ACHE to provide to our students through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. Students who wish to be considered for this grant must complete and submit the 2-3 minute COVID-19 Emergency Grant Application by clicking here or through their My Portal (instructions attached). The application is a short survey and must be submitted by the deadline date of Friday, April 24 by 5:00 p.m. All applications submitted will be reviewed and recipients selected by the COVID-19 Emergency Grant Task Force. Students with submitted applications by the deadline date will receive e-mail notifications of decision and may have his or her application used for consideration if additional funding becomes available in the future.  If you have questions or need assistance in applying for this Emergency Grant or other financial aid concerns, contact the Financial Aid Office at (479) 308-2200 or e-mail at financialaid@achedu.org.
  • Student Services e-mailed reminders to current students of the availability of funds, application process and deadline dates on the following preceding dates in April of 2020 on the 20th, 21st, 23rd and 24th.
  • The Office of Financial Aid e-mailed CARES Grant Offers to selected applicants on May 5, 2020 to accept or decline the Student and Institutional Portion of funds offered by uploading the signed agreement to the Document Center in their Student Portal by May 15, 2020 at 11:59 a.m. The offer contained an anticipated disbursement date of May 20, 2020.
  • The Office of Financial Aid e-mailed students who completed all requirements specified an anticipated notice of disbursement of May 20, 2020 and that These funds must be used for expenses you experienced due to the disruption of campus operations due to coronavirus, such as: food, housing, course materials, technology, health care and child-care expenses. The Business Office e-mailed students a disbursement notice and stipend/refund notification to all students.

INSTITUTIONAL PORTION

The Arkansas Colleges of Health Education acknowledges they signed and returned to the Dept of Education the Recipient’s Funding Certificate and Agreement for the Institutional Portion of the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund Formula Grants authorized by Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act (Institutional Portion). The total amount requested and received from the Dept of Ed was $23,569, pursuant to the Certification and Agreement for Emergency Financial Aid Grant to Institutions.

ACHE received access to draw down the funds on May 2, 2020. As of May 25, 2020, the total amount of Emergency Financial Aid Grants distributed to students under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act of May 25, 2020 is $23,569 which was distributed to fifty-five students in the form of a CARES2 GRANT. The Institutional Portion of the emergency grant funds were applied for using the same application, eligibility requirements, applicants awarded and award amounts as the Student Portion. Please see the below distribution chart for the amounts awarded, number of students in the three tier levels and total amount disbursed for each tier level for CARES2 Grant Funds.

CARES2 GRANT DISTRIBUTION CHART

Award AmountsTier LevelsNumber of StudentsTotal Disbursed
$750.00High10$7,500.00
$468.14Moderate23$10,767.22
$240.99Low22$5,301.78
Total55$23,569.00

CARES1 & CARES2 GRANT DISTRIBUTION CHART

Award AmountsTier LevelsNumber of StudentsTotal Disbursed
$1,500.00High10$15,000.00
$936.28Moderate23$21,534.44
$481.98Low22$10,603.56
Total55$47,138.00

 SECTION 18004(a)(3)

The Arkansas Colleges of Health Education (ACHE) received a total allocation of $452,862 under Section 18004(a)(3) of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) from the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE) Formula Grant. These funds could be used by the institution to defray expenses incurred, such as: loss revenue, reimbursement for expenses already incurred, technology costs associated with a transition to distance education, faculty and staff trainings, and payroll and to be provided as grants to students to assist with costs associated in a student’s cost of attendance as defined under Section 472 of the HEA, including food, housing, course materials, technology, health care, and child care.

Unlike the funds under Section 18004(a)(1) for Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students and for an Institution’s Costs, the funds provided under Section 18004(a)(2) and Section 18004(a)(3) of the CARES Act, respectively, are not subject to Section 18004(c), which means institutions are not required to use at least 50% of these funds for grants to students. The funds under Section 18004(a)(2) and Section 18004(a)(3) may be used for grants to students for any component of the student’s cost of attendance, including tuition, course materials, and technology. However, to receive grants under these sections, students must be eligible to receive Federal financial student aid under Section 484 of the HEA. Students may demonstrate eligibility by completing a FAFSA, by having completed a FAFSA and received an ISIR in the past, or by completing an application designed by the institution in which the student attests under the penalty of perjury to meeting the requirements of Section 484 of the HEA. Institutions may also use these funds to defray institutional expenses, which under Section 18004(a)(2) and Section 18004(a)(3) may include lost revenue, reimbursement for expenses already incurred, technology costs associated with the transition to distance education, faculty and staff training, and payroll.

The President signed the Recipient’s Certification and Agreement for Funds under Section 18004(a)(3) of the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund, Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act on 7/29/20 authorizing the funds to be provided to the Arkansas Colleges of Health Education.  The President elected to provide the entire allocation of funds to eligible students. The COVID-19 Emergency Grant Task Force determined eligibility would be based upon current enrollment and being eligible to receive federal student aid as shown by a submitted 2020-2021 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to the Arkansas Colleges of Health Education, School Code: 042568.

Awards were made to 578 students in the form of a CARES3 GRANT to be disbursed on March 29, 2021 for a total disbursement of $452,862 on April 1, 2021. To ensure equal distribution of the $452,862 as much as possible 100 students were awarded $783.49 and 478 students were awarded $783.50.  Awarding of the funds from the FIPSE grant occurred on April 1, 2021 under the guidance of the April 21, 2020 Frequently Asked Questions about the Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students under Section 18004 of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act and the June 17, 2020 Interim Final Rule.

One student who was awarded the funds withdrew prior to disbursement and so the student no longer met eligibility at that time and the amount awarded was not requested from G5. This resulted in a disbursement of $452,078.50 occurring, which left a remaining balance of $783.50 that could be disbursed to another student. At the time, a student who had already received the CARES3 grant also submitted a Student Emergency Fund Application. Upon the suggestion of the Director of Financial Aid it was approved by the President to use the remaining $783.50 in CARES3 grant funds to this student. This action resulted in 578 total awards to 577 students.

Please note after awarding occurred the Department published final rule, “Eligibility To Receive Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students Under HEERF” May 14, 2021, 86 FR 26608), which changed the eligibility requirements.

All funds were expended as of May 13th, 2021 for the total amount of $452,862 to 577 students.

Please see the below distribution chart for the amounts awarded, number of students in the three tier levels and total amount disbursed for each tier level.

CARES3 GRANT DISTRIBUTION CHART

Award AmountsNumber of StudentsTotal Disbursed
$783.49 100$78,349.00
$783.50 *477$374,513.00
Total577$452,862.00

*One student was awarded a second award.

ACHE provided awarded students with the following instructions, directions and guidance concerning the Emergency Financial Aid Grants:

  • The Office of Financial Aid e-mailed students who qualified for a CARES3 grant an award notice and anticipated notice of disbursement. The e-mail provided the condition of receiving the funds must be for one of the following: Component of your Cost of Attendance (food, housing, course materials, technology, health care, and child-care). The e-mail also stated if funds will not be used for one of the required costs to e-mail financial aid and at that point the award would have been cancelled.
  • The Business Office e-mailed students a disbursement notice and stipend/refund notification to all students on the day of disbursement.

HEERF I GRANT DISTRIBUTION CHART

Fund SourceNumber of StudentsTotal Disbursed
CARES1 GRANT 55$23,569.00
CARES2 GRANT 55$23,569.00
CARES3 GRANT 577$452,862.00
Total687$500,000.00
HEERF II

The Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund II (HEERF II) is authorized by the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2021 (CRRSAA), Public Law 116-260, signed into law on Dec. 27, 2020. In total, the CRRSAA authorizes $81.88 billion in support for education, in addition to the $30.75 billion expeditiously provided last spring through the Coronavirus Aid, Recovery, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, Public Law 116-136.

The Arkansas Colleges of Health Education received a total allocation of HEERF II emergency grant funds under CRRSAA section 314(a)(1) of $117,888 to be allocated at a minimum of $23,569 for the student portion and a maximum of $94,319 to the institutional portion. No application was required for this as ACHE had previously received CARES Act HEERF Institutional Portion. Unlike the CARES Act, the CRRSAA requires that institutions prioritize students with exceptional need, such as students who receive Pell Grants, in awarding financial aid grants to students. However, students do not need to be Pell recipients or students who are eligible for Pell grants to be identified as having exceptional need

The COVID-19 Emergency Grant Task Force elected to provide all funds to current eligible students with an Expected Family Contribution (EFC) Number of 0 on his/her 2020-2021 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to the students in substantially equal disbursements between the student and the institutional portion. The student portion was made in the form of a grant known as CRRSAA1 and the institutional portion in the form of a grant known as CRRSAA2.

Award notifications and awards of these funds to 363 students on April 1, 2021 for a total disbursement of $117,888 on April 1, 2021.

 STUDENT PORTION

To ensure equal distribution as much as possible of the $23,569, 59 for the student portion students were awarded $64.92 and 304 students were awarded $64.93 on the CRRSAA1 fund. Please see the below distribution chart for the amounts awarded, number of students awarded, number of awards and total amount disbursed.

CRRSAA1 GRANT DISTRIBUTION CHART

Award AmountsNumber of AwardsTotal Disbursed
$64.9259 $3,830.28
$64.93 304 $19,738.72
Total363 $23,569.00

Institutional Portion

To ensure equal distribution as much as possible if the $94,319, 299 students were awarded $259.83 and 71 students were awarded $259.84. Please see the below distribution chart for the amounts awarded, number of students awarded, number of awards and total amount disbursed.

CRRSAA2 GRANT DISTRIBUTION CHART

Award AmountsNumber of AwardsTotal Disbursed
$259.83 292 $75,870.36
$259.84 71 $18,448.64
Total363 $94,319.00

ACHE provided students with the following instructions, directions and guidance concerning the CRRSAA1 and CRRSAA2 grants:

  • The Office of Financial Aid e-mailed students who qualified for the CRRSAA1 and CRRSAA2 grants an award notice and anticipated notice of disbursement for April 1, 2021. The e-mail provided the condition of receiving the funds must be for one of the following:
    • Component of your Cost of Attendance (food, housing, course materials, technology, health care, and child-care) or
    • Emergency costs that arise due to coronavirus expenses, such as: tuition, food, housing, health care (including mental health care), or child care.
      The e-mail also stated if funds will not be used for one of the required costs to e-mail financial aid and at that point the award would have been cancelled.
  • The Business Office e-mailed students a disbursement notice and stipend/refund notification to all students.

HEERF II GRANT DISTRIBUTION CHART

Fund SourceNumber of StudentsTotal Disbursed
CRRSAA1 GRANT 363$23,569.00
CRRSAA2 GRANT 363$94,319.00
Total726$117,888.00
HEERF III

The Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund III (HEERF III) is authorized by the American Rescue Plan (ARP), Public Law 117-2, signed into law on March 11, 2021, providing $39.6 billion in support to institutions of higher education to serve students and ensure learning continues during the COVID-19 pandemic.

 The Arkansas Colleges of Health Education has the ability to receive $218,338 from HEERF III emergency grant funds without an application due to receiving previous HEERF funding. $109,169 allocated for our students and $109,169 allocated for our institution. ACHE received $101,232.13 of the institutional portion on June 17, 2021 to reimburse themselves for the remaining technology costs associated with transitioning to distance education paid for in 2020.

REPORTING

Section 18004(a)(1)

The institutional portion of the emergency grant funds were provided to students and expended by May 20, 2020 and therefore was not required to complete quarterly reporting. For transparency, see the below quarterly reports. Subsequent reporting if necessary would have occurred 45 days after May 25, 2020. All funds were spent as of May 20, 2020 so no reporting was needed.

ACHE Quarterly Budget & Expenditure Reporting under CARES Act Section 18004(1) Institutional Portion, 18004(a)(2) and 18004(a)(3) (amended on 7/26/21 to not include cumulative totals for each quarter).

Click here for the Budget and Expenditure Reporting under Section 18004(a)(3) of the CARES Act for costs incurred by the institution between March 13, 2020 and the beginning of the Fall 2020 term.

The Annual Reporting Period for the first HEERF annual reporting began on January 5, 2020 and ends on February 1, 2021. The Controller submitted this report by February 1, 2021.