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Implementation of Key Federal Education Policies in the Wake of the Coronavirus Pandemic

Contract Information

Current Status:

Data collection underway.


April 2020 – March 2022



Contract Number:



Westat and Mathematica Policy Research


The coronavirus pandemic is continuing to significantly disrupt K–12 educational systems across the country during the 2020–21 school year. State agencies and local leaders appear to be taking unprecedented action in the wake of the pandemic to manage continuity in school operations, tackle learning loss, and address concerns about increasing equity gaps for particularly vulnerable students. This quick turnaround study focuses on how education officials are carrying out, and are supported by, federal policies like those associated with the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) and the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

  • How did the coronavirus pandemic affect key school operations during the 2020–21 school year?
  • How is the pandemic influencing ESSA implementation?
  • How is CARES Act funding being used to support recovery?
  • To what extent are states and districts addressing equity in their recovery efforts?

The study is descriptive. It will be based on Spring 2021 surveys of state representatives from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico and a nationally representative survey of 550 school districts.

The study's report is expected in 2022 and will be announced on

Key findings will be available after the study report is published.