A lot of competition for the District Level Race to the Top program… almost 900 districts for 15-20 grants. So the Federal government can bypass states altogether in order to influence school districts. Why deal with the middle man when you can just cut him out? Via the American Association of Christian School’s weekly email The Washington Flyer:
The Department of Education announced that 893 school districts intend to apply for the latest Race to the Top competitive grant program. Approximately, fifteen to twenty winners will be awarded grants between 5 and 40 million dollars, totaling 400 million dollars. The intent to apply is non-binding but will allow the Department to plan for the upcoming applications. No districts in Wyoming and North Dakota indicated intent to apply. Many of the larger districts (Los Angeles, New York and Chicago) have applied with the notable exceptions of the Miami-Dade and Atlanta school districts. Education officials must demonstrate a coordinated effort to formulate personalized learning plans for each student. The applications must be received by October 30 and all funds must be disbursed by December 31, 2012.
I’d love to know why Miami-Dade and Atlanta School Districts didn’t apply, if anyone has some insight into that please share. Perhaps they realize that since the amount of the award will likely only make up 1%-3% of their budgets it was best not to accept the strings requiring costly reforms along with it.