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OPE: Office of Postsecondary Education
Current Section
CARES Act: Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund

Introduction

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.

Note: This page is dedicated to the first HEERF grant funding established by the CARES Act. Information pertaining to the new funding (HEERF II) established by the CRRSAA can be found at this link.

Litigation Updates Applicable to certain institutions (Last Updated 9/8/2020)

Latest News (Last Updated 1/29/2021)

January 28, 2021:  The Department is committed to supporting grantees in meeting HEERF reporting requirements.  To provide institutions more flexibility we are extending the reporting deadline until February 8, 2021 for reporting HEERF data.  A letter from the Acting Assistant Secretary can be accessed here (PDF, 138K).

January 14, 2021: The U.S. Department of Education announced today an additional $21.2 billion is now available to higher education institutions to ensure learning continues for students during the COVID-19 pandemic under the CRRSAA as HEERF II. Information pertaining to the new HEERF II funding can be found at our CRRSAA: Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF II) page here.

January 5, 2021: The Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2021, enacted on December 27, 2020, provided $22.7 billion for institutions of higher education. Information regarding the distribution of these funds is forthcoming and will be posted on this website when available.

January 5, 2021: As announced in today’s Federal Register, the newly enacted Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 supersedes the Department of Education’s December 23, 2020 Federal Register notice that reopened the HEERF grant program application period for certain limited applicants. The 2021 Appropriations Act prevents the Department from accepting or processing any applications for new awards under section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act (i.e., the “Student Aid Portion” program (CFDA 84.425E) and the “Institutional Portion” program (CFDA 84.425F)).

While the Department cannot accept or process any applications for CARES Act section 18004(a)(1) program funds, we are still able to accept applications for section 18004(a)(2) and (a)(3) HEERF programs (CFDAs 84.425J, 84.425K, 84.425L, 84.425M, 84.425N) from applicants that meet one of the five conditions described in the Reopening Notice and that we verified previously have attempted to apply through grants.gov for one of these HEERF grant opportunities. Applicants for those funds must submit their revised or corrected applications no later than January 11, 2021.

January 5, 2021: The reporting period for the first HEERF annual report begins today and ends on February 1, 2021. The grantee reporting portal can be accessed here. A user guide, webinar, and other resources can be accessed here. All HEERF grantees are required to submit an annual report during this reporting period.

December 11, 2020: All Institutions are required to submit HEERF annual performance reports via the Annual Report Data Collection System. As part of this, every institution is required to submit to heerfannual@ed.gov the names and email addresses of those individuals who will be authorized to edit and submit your institution’s HEERF annual performance report. The Submitter is the one grant official who will have the authority to submit the report on behalf of the grantee. The Editors are users who will be able to complete, but not submit, the data collection form. The Submitter will have Editor privileges and may also answer questions in the data collection form. 

If your institution has not already responded to our outreach emails, please send their names and email addresses in the following format to heerfannual@ed.gov:

  • Submitter: (First Name Last Name) (Email address)
  • Editor 1: (First Name Last Name) (Email address)
  • Editor 2 (if needed): (First Name Last Name) (Email address)

Your institution must tell us who will be the Submitter and Editor(s) for your HEERF annual report as soon as possible if you have not done so already. The reporting period for the first HEERF annual report will be January 5 to February 1, 2021. More information is available at our reporting page here.

Specific Program Information

Congress created several different formula and discretionary allocations within HEERF. Please click on the links below to be taken for information and resources for the specific program or distribution.

Institutional Resilience and Expanded Postsecondary Opportunity (IREPO) Grant Program Competition (FIPSE Competitive Grant)

Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE) Grant Program (Formula Grant)

Redistribution of the (a)(1) Reserve

Student Portion

Institutional Portion

Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs)

Tribally Controlled Colleges and Universities (TCCUs)

Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs)

Strengthening Institutions Program (SIP)

>

Program
(with link to website)

CFDA

CARES Act Section

Eligibility
(with link to allocation table)

Deadline

Grants.gov Funding Opportunity Number

Student Portion

84.425E

18004(a)(1)

All Title IV participating schools
Note: Students cannot apply for assistance directly from the U.S. Department of Education but should contact their institutions for further information and guidance.
Allocation Table Here

9/30/2020

ED-GRANTS-041020-003

Institutional Portion

84.425F

18004(a)(1)

All Title IV participating schools
Allocation Table Here

9/30/2020

ED-GRANTS-042120-004

Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs)

84.425J

18004(a)(2)

Institutions that qualify for funding under the following programs: Strengthening Historically Black Colleges and Universities (Part B institutions as described in section 322(2) of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended (HEA)), Strengthening Historically Black Graduate Institutions (institutions named in section 326(e)(1) of the HEA), and Master’s Degree Programs at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (institutions named in section 723(b)(1) of the HEA)
Allocation Table Here

9/30/2020; 1/11/2021, only for applicants eligible for the limited reopening announced in the Department’s December 23, 2020 Federal Register notice

ED-GRANTS-043020-001

Tribally Controlled Colleges and Universities (TCCUs)

84.425K

18004(a)(2)

Institutions that qualify for funding under the Tribally Controlled College or University Assistance Act of 1978 or the Navajo Community College Assistance Act of 1978; are cited in section 532 of the Equity in Educational Land Grant Status Act of 1994; or are designated as eligible for funding by the Bureau of Indian Education
Allocation Table Here

9/30/2020; 1/11/2021, only for applicants eligible for the limited reopening announced in the Department’s December 23, 2020 Federal Register notice

ED-GRANTS-043020-002

Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs)

84.425L

18004(a)(2)

Institutions that would be eligible to participate in the following programs: Predominantly Black Institutions (PBI), Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian-Serving Institutions (ANNH), Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander-Serving Institutions (AANAPISI), Native American-Serving Nontribal Institutions (NASNTI), Developing Hispanic-Serving Institutions (DHSI), and Promoting Postbaccalaureate Opportunities for Hispanic Americans (PPOHA) programs
Allocation Table Here

9/30/2020; 1/11/2021, only for applicants eligible for the limited reopening announced in the Department’s December 23, 2020 Federal Register notice

ED-GRANTS-043020-003

Strengthening Institutions Program (SIP)

84.425M

18004(a)(2)

Institutions designated as eligible in FY 2020 for grant programs in Titles III and V of the HEA that did not receive 18004(a)(2) grant awards as a result of not meeting the requirements for the Strengthening HBCUs, HBGIs, HBCU Master’s, TCCUs, PBIs, ANNH, AANAPISI, NASNTI, DHSI, and/or PPOHA programs
Allocation Table Here

9/30/2020; 1/11/2021, only for applicants eligible for the limited reopening announced in the Department’s December 23, 2020 Federal Register notice

ED-GRANTS-043020-004

Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE) Formula Grant

84.425N

18004(a)(3)

Public and private nonprofit institutions of higher education that are eligible under Part B of Title VII of the HEA and received less than $500,000 total from HEERF (a)(1) and (a)(2) programs
Allocation Table Here

9/30/2020; 1/11/2021, only for applicants eligible for the limited reopening announced in the Department’s December 23, 2020 Federal Register notice

ED-GRANTS-043020-005

Institutional Resilience and Expanded Postsecondary Opportunity (IREPO) – FIPSE Competitive Grant

84.425P

18004(a)(3)

This is a competitive grant program.  Please see the Notice Inviting Applications for information regarding eligibility and selection criteria.
Federal Register Notice Here  

Notice of intent to apply: 9/10/2020
Application: 10/20/2020

ED-GRANTS-082120-00


Reporting and Data Collection

HEERF Grant Program FAQs:

COVID-19 Flexibility FAQs:

Webinars

Disclaimer: The guidance provided in these webinars is related to Section 18004 of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES Act), Pub. L. No. 116-136 (March 27, 2020).  Any guidance in these webinars and related materials as to allowable and unallowable uses are applicable for HEERF costs incurred before the effective date of the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2021 (CRRSAA), Pub. L. 116-260, which is December 27, 2020.

Please check the Department’s HEERF II website on a periodic basis for any guidance as to unspent (as of December 27, 2020) CARES Act HEERF funds and CRRSAA HEERF funds.

October 14, 2020 Reporting Requirements and Lost Revenue Webinar

Principal Deputy Under Secretary Diane Jones and Assistant Secretary for Postsecondary Education Bob King hosted a webinar on reporting requirements for HEERF and other topics on October 14, 2020. Please find the following materials from the webinar:

June 23, 2020 HEERF Technical Assistance Webinar

Contact Information

Have questions about HEERF grants? Email HEERF@ed.gov
Think an institution is misusing or abusing ED funds? Do not let CARES Act Funding for Schools and Students end up in the wrong hands. File a complaint online with our Inspector General (OIG) or call their Hotline.

ARCHIVED INFORMATION AS OF AUGUST 13, 2020



   
Last Modified: 02/26/2021