Some States Race to the Top
Diana Kendrick, Eastern 2 Regional Director
Delaware, the First State has won funds in the first phase of the Race to the Top competition. Delaware and Tennessee (the other state to receive funds from Phase 1) have statewide buy-in for comprehensive plans to reform their schools thus heading the lists of states in Phase 1. Both states have written new laws to support their policies. And according to U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, "have demonstrated the courage, capacity, and commitment to turn their ideas into practices that can improve outcomes for students."
The Race to the Top state competition is designed to reward states that are leading the way in comprehensive, coherent, statewide education reform across four key areas:
- Adopting standards and assessments that prepare students to succeed in college and the workplace;
- Building data systems that measure student growth and success, and inform teachers and principals how to improve instruction;
- Recruiting, developing, rewarding, and retaining effective teachers and principals, especially where they are needed most; and
- Turning around their lowest-performing schools.
The District of Columbia, Maryland, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania have submitted applications for Phase 2 of the competition. The Bluefield Daily Telegraph indicated on May 22, 2010 due to a delay in legislative action, West Virginia had to drop its bid for up to $75 million in federal Race to the Top Funds.
To learn additional information on the process and each state's application visit, http://www2.ed.gov/programs/racetothetop/index.html