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WHAT WORKS IN EDUCATION The George Lucas Educational Foundation

Race to the Top: The Second Leg (Edutopia)

Race to the Top: The Second Leg (Edutopia)

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By Edutopia's Kathy Baron Thirty-five states and the District of Columbia are vying for $3.4 billion dollars available in phase two of the U.S. Department of Education’s Race to the Top program. Yesterday, June 1st, was the last day for states to submit their applications. Phase Two includes a new rule requiring states to keep their budget request within the ranges established by the Department. For instance, California, Texas (which has decided NOT to apply), New York and Florida are eligible for between $350 and $700 million, while New Mexico, Nebraska and other less populated states top out at $75 million. If they ask for more, they’ll be disqualified. Just two states, Delaware and Tennessee, won round one, receiving a total of about $600 million. The Race to the Top competition was created as an incentive for states to pass new legislation to develop innovative reforms aimed turning around low performing schools, create stronger ties between teachers unions and state legislatures, develop accountability measures linking teacher salary to student achievement, and promoting new charter schools. Finalists should be announced sometime in July, and the Department is expected to announce the winners in late September. Applied in Round One but not in Round Two: Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Minnesota, Oregon, South Dakota, Virginia, West Virginia, Wyoming. Applied in Round Two but not in Round One: Maine, Maryland, Mississippi, Montana, Nevada, and Washington. Applied in Both Rounds: Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, D.C., Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Utah, and Wisconsin. Never applied: Alaska, North Dakota, Texas, Vermont. Won Round One: Delaware and Tennessee

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