On November 20, the Michigan Department of Education (MDE) issued a memo to clarify the documentation they will require school districts (including public school academies) to maintain for Coronavirus Relief Fund (CRF) grants and the allowable uses of the funds.
Specifically, the memo states that unless a school district receives and spends more than $500 of CRF funding per pupil, MDE will not require supporting documentation to be submitted or maintained. However, be aware that the Compliance Supplement related to the CRF grants’ audit requirements has not been released yet and may include other requirements.
For documentation related to the allowability of costs, we recommend at a minimum that school districts record CRF expenditures in the proper general ledger expenditure account as to function, object and grant code. We also recommend maintaining support as to specific purchases (for example, computers, iPads, hot spots or protective equipment) and a memo to support the school district’s reason for charging other expenditures, including how the expenditures were related to COVID-19.
In its memo, the MDE provided examples of allowable costs, which include:
- expanding broadband capacity
- hiring new teachers
- developing an online curriculum
- acquiring computers and similar digital devices
- acquiring and installing additional ventilation or other air filtering equipment
- incurring additional transportation costs
- incurring additional costs of providing meals
For more information, including CRF guidance and CRF Frequently Asked Questions, refer to MDE’s memo #COVID-19-139.
Remember, all costs need to be spent by December 31, 2020. If your school district has questions about the CRF or other items related to coronavirus funding, please reach out to a member of Yeo & Yeo’s Education Services Group.