CCSSO to Hold Livestreamed Event Highlighting the Impact of State ESSER Funds

The event will be held Tuesday, March 21 from 9:30 a.m. to noon ET, and will be livestreamed.

Washington, D.C. (March 3, 2023) – The Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) will hold an event as part of its annual Legislative Conference to highlight how states are using federal COVID-19 relief to support all students and share early evidence of the impact of those investments.

The event will be held Tuesday, March 21 from 9:30 a.m. to noon ET, and will be livestreamed. The session will feature panels on academic recovery, student wellbeing, the educator workforce and more. Additional detail is below. To register for the livestreamed event, please email Carolyn Phenicie at by March 17.

CCSSO’s COVID Relief Data Project tracks how states are spending the $19 billion in state set-aside funds from three federal COVID-19 relief packages. For more information on the COVID Relief Data Project, including examples of impact, please visit

Specific panels include:

  • 9:30 – 9:40 a.m. – Welcome and Opening Remarks
    • Speakers: Carissa Moffat Miller, chief executive officer, CCSSO, and Kirsten Baesler, North Dakota superintendent of public instruction and CCSSO Board of Directors president.
  • 9:40 – 10:10 a.m. – Academic Recovery in Focus: The Impact of State ESSER Investments
    • Speakers: Penny Schwinn, Tennessee commissioner of education; Stephanie Siddens, Ohio interim superintendent of public instruction; and Nancy Waymack, director of research, partnerships and policy, National Student Support Accelerator.
  • 10:10 – 10:35 a.m. – Spotlight on Illinois: Supporting Student Wellbeing
    • Speakers: Tony Sanders, Illinois superintendent of education; Mashana Smith, clinical psychologist and director of the Resilience Education to Advance Community Healing (REACH) program, Lurie Children’s Center for Childhood Resilience; Amy Blomberg, principal, Broadmeadow Elementary School.
  • 10:45 – 11:10 a.m. – Spotlight on Missouri: Strengthening the Educator Workforce
    • Speakers: Margie Vandeven, Missouri commissioner of education and CCSSO Board of Directors president-elect; Rosalyn Rice-Harris, senior director, CCSSO; Carma Richey, teacher, Raymore-Peculiar School District; Kayley Pak, teacher, Park Hill School District.
  • 11:10 – 11:35 – Spotlight on Connecticut: Centering Youth Voice
    • Speakers: Charlene Russell-Tucker, Connecticut commissioner of education; Chapal Bhavsar, former student, Danbury High School; Viviana Flores, former student, Danbury High School; Heather Lorenz, social studies teacher, Danbury High School.
  • 11:35 – 12 p.m. – Spotlight on Utah: Expanding Blended Learning Innovations
    • Speakers: Sydnee Dickson, Utah state superintendent of public instruction; John Bailey, nonresident visiting fellow, American Enterprise Institute; Brooke Austin, assistant director, Odyssey Charter School; Sarah Young, chief of staff, Utah State Board of Education.

The Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) is a nonpartisan, nationwide, nonprofit organization of public officials who head departments of elementary and secondary education in the states, the District of Columbia, the Department of Defense Education Activity, Bureau of Indian Education, and five U.S. extra-state jurisdictions. CCSSO provides leadership, advocacy, and technical assistance on major educational issues. The Council seeks member consensus on major educational issues and expresses their views to civic and professional organizations, federal agencies, Congress, and the public.

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