How schools can Maximize Federal Funds for School Technology

As the deadline for utilizing federal COVID relief funds approaches, school districts must plan for the future sustainability of their technology programs. With billions of dollars in one-time funding set to expire in the Fall of 2024, it’s imperative to adopt a proactive approach to technology planning and investment.

By partnering with Diamond Assets, schools can ensure their technology initiatives remain aligned with educational objectives while maximizing the value of every dollar spent.

In today’s educational landscape, technology is more than just a tool—it’s a catalyst for innovation and collaboration. As such, any investments made with federal dollars must be part of a comprehensive strategy to enhance teaching and learning outcomes.

Technology as a Strategic Investment

With federal funds available, the time is now to strategize wisely, ensuring technology investments align with broader educational goals.

There are a number of funding sources that can be used to fund different parts of the educational technology ecosystem, including:

  • Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA)
  • Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)
  • Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER)
  • Governor’s Emergency Education Relief (GEER)

Other recent federal funds are also available to support educational technology. In November 2021, the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act was signed into law and provided $65 billion for broadband. This historic investment brings with it increased coordination across federal funding streams.

Each federal grant program has requirements that govern the use of funds, but all support teaching and learning with technology. Grantees may use funds to support professional development to help educators implement technology-enabled strategies; provide students access to digital materials, resources, and support; or implement technology that enhances collaboration and communication between educators, parents, and the school community.

Another way grantees can use federal funds is to purchase devices and internet connectivity for students.

Diamond Assets understands the intricacies of this process, offering a four-step approach to help schools across the country seamlessly implement technology solutions while maximizing the value of their current Apple devices. That is why we work closely with school districts to develop sustainable technology plans that prioritize long-term success.

The Four-Step Process

Plan

Our team of Apple experts begins by collaborating with school leaders to create a robust technology plan. This plan outlines which devices to purchase, their intended lifespan, optimal resale timing, and strategies for ongoing reinvestment. By taking a proactive approach to technology planning, school districts can effectively allocate resources and anticipate future needs.

Purchase

Leveraging its partnership with Apple, Diamond Assets ensures that schools acquire the best new devices tailored to their immediate requirements. Simultaneously, the company facilitates the upcycling of existing Apple devices, generating immediate funds to supplement the budget. This seamless transition minimizes disruptions while maximizing the value of every investment.

Sell

When the time comes to upgrade devices, we simplify the process by purchasing outdated equipment and responsibly managing the upcycling or recycling process. With the funds generated from these transactions, schools can then reinvest to offset the cost of new purchases, creating a sustainable financial model for technology upgrades.

Repeat

By embracing a cyclical approach to technology upgrades, schools can stay ahead of the curve and adapt to evolving educational trends. Through multiple cycles of planning, purchasing, selling, and reinvesting, we empower school districts to harness the full potential of technology while minimizing long-term costs.

Creative Funding Solutions

In addition to federal relief dollars, school leaders should explore creative funding options to support their technology initiatives. By integrating technology as an ongoing line-item expense from the outset, districts can better allocate resources and avoid future budgetary constraints.

That is why it is also important for schools to advocate for updated policies in their local areas in order to take advantage of residual value and create more sustainable and fiscally responsible ways of investing in education technology.

One of those ways is through technology buybacks.

The average dollar amount realized from technology buybacks comes in near $350,000, and schools do not have to delay the buyback process in the case their entire fleet is not ready to go. No buyback is too small, and they can be done all year long. At Diamond Assets, our team of Apple experts have assisted schools with buybacks as small as 10 devices to more than 10,000 devices, giving back millions of dollars to schools each year.

Did you know that only 30 percent of school technology directors know how to do a buyback? That is why Diamond Assets is here to help you.

Looking Ahead

The integration of technology into the educational ecosystem requires careful planning, strategic investment, and ongoing evaluation. With Diamond Assets as a trusted partner, providing expertise in financial planning and device management, schools can navigate the complexities of technology integration with confidence.

Contact us to learn more about how our team can help your school district maximize federal funding for technology.

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