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CARES Act HEERF Student Relief Grant

York County School of Technology is required to provide regular reporting to the U.S. Department of Education (ED) on the use of funds authorized by the CARES Act. Funds received by York County School of Technology under the CARES Act were authorized by Congress and signed into law by the President on March 27, 2020. The information noted below is intended to not only meet the reporting requirements of the CARES Act but also provide information to our university community regarding York County School of Technology’s use of the student grant portion of the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF).

Section 18004(e) of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (“CARES Act” or the “Act”)), Pub. L. No. 116-136, 134 Stat. 281 (March 27, 2020), directs institutions receiving funds under Section 18004 of the Act to submit (in a time and manner required by the Secretary) a report to the Secretary describing the use of funds distributed from the HEERF. Section 18004(c) of the CARES Act requires institutions to use no less than 50 percent of the funds received from Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act to provide Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students for expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to coronavirus (including eligible expenses under a student’s cost of attendance such as food, housing, course materials, technology, health care, and childcare). On April 9, 2020, the ED published documents related to the Emergency Financial Aid Grants, including a letter from Secretary Betsy DeVos, a form Certification and Agreement for signing and returning by institutions to access the funds, and a list of institutional allocations under 18004(a)(1).

The Certification and Agreement directs each institution applying for HEERF funds to comply with Section 18004(e) of the CARES Act and submit an initial report (the “30-day Fund Report”) to the Secretary thirty (30) days from the date of the institution’s Certification and Agreement to ED. Each HEERF participating institution must post the information listed below on the institution’s primary website. The following information must appear in a format and location that is easily accessible to the public 30 days after the date when the institution received its allocation under 18004(a)(1) and updated every 45 days thereafter:

1. An acknowledgement that the institution signed and returned to the Department the Certification and Agreement and the assurance that the institution has used, or intends to use, 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.

  • York County School of Technology (YCST) signed and submitted the U.S. Department of Education Certification and Agreement for Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act on April 18, 2020. The U.S. DOE provided YCST with an electronically signed Grant Award Notification (GAN) on April 25, 2020.

2. The total amount of funds that the institution will receive or has received from the Department pursuant to the institution’s Certification and Agreement [for] Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students.

  • York County School of Technology will receive $102,596 for Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students.

3. The total amount of Emergency Financial Aid Grants distributed to students under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act as of the date of submission (i.e., as of the 30- day Report and every 45 days thereafter).

  • $102,596 to be distributed – in process

4. The estimated total number of students at the institution eligible to participate in programs under Section 484 in Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965 and thus eligible to receive Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act.

  • 161 Title IV Eligible YCST Students

5. The total number of students who have received an Emergency Financial Aid Grant to students under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act.

  • Grant processing for the 161 eligible students noted above began on 5/22/20.

6. The method(s) used by the institution to determine which students receive Emergency Financial Aid Grants and how much they would receive under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act.

  • York County School of Technology identified all currently enrolled, full-time, undergraduate students within the university’s financial aid system with an eligible Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) on file. Student Financial Services validated enrollment statuses and federal aid eligibility prior to disbursement of emergency funds as outlined in the CARES Act and additional guidance from ED.

7. In accordance with the Secretary of Education’s instructions for institutions to issue aid to students as soon as possible under the student aid portion of the CARES Act HEERF, York County School of Technology sent an email message with a CARES Act Application attached to all eligible students on May 5, 2020. A follow-up letter/application was sent to all students on May 15, 2020 via US Mail. A second email reminder was sent on May 22, 2020.

By completing the application with their name and signature, students indicate via a checklist how the campus closure has affected them financially. The application allows the student an opportunity to add additional comments not covered by the checklist.  The electronic form was also made available for students to download, print, and return. Students were also mailed a hard copy of the application. Students submitted the form indicating they were requesting emergency funding related to the disruption of campus operations due to Covid-19 as noted above and also that any funds received would be used for this purpose.