If this isn't another corporate patronage mechanism to siphon dollars from our schools, classrooms, teachers and students and instead funnel them to private industry profits and the growing corporate reform bureaucracy why such a requirement?
noah e gotbaum
"form partnerships with public and private organizations to sustain their work and provide services"
...a bi-weekly update on U.S. Department of Education activities relevant to the Intergovernmental and Corporate community and other stakeholders
RACE TO THE TOP
On August 12, the Department announced it had finalized the application for the 2012 Race to the Top-District competition, which will provide nearly $400 million to support school districts in implementing local education reforms that personalize instruction, close achievement gaps, and take full advantage of 21st century tools that prepare each student for college and careers. The program sets a high bar to fund those districts that have a track record of success, clear vision for reform, and innovative plans to transform the learning environment and accelerate student achievement. Race to the Top helped bring about groundbreaking education reforms in states across the country. Building off that success, were now going to help support reform at the local level, Secretary Duncan noted. We want to help schools become engines of innovation through personalized learning, so that every child in America can receive the world-class public education they deserve.
The program criteria invites applications from districts or groups of districts proposing to serve at least 2,000 students -- or groups of 10 or more districts proposing to serve less than 2,000 students -- with at least 40% of participating students (across all participating schools) qualifying for free or reduced-
price lunch. Districts will choose to apply for funding to support learning strategies that personalize education in all or a set of schools, within specific grade levels or select subjects. Moreover, districts must demonstrate a commitment to Race to the Tops four core reform areas and have sign-off on their plan from the local superintendent, local school board president, and local teacher union/association president (where applicable). The Department plans to support high-quality proposals from across a variety of districts, including rural and non-rural, as well as those participating in a Race to the Top state grant and those not participating. The program offers competitive preference to applicants that form partnerships with public and private organizations to sustain their work and provide services to help meet students academic, social, and emotional needs and enhance their ability to succeed.
The Department expects to make 15 to 25 awards. Awards will range from $5 million to $40 million, depending on the population served through the plan. Districts are asked to submit an intent to apply by August 30. Applications are due October 30. Grants will be announced no later than December 31. FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE GO TO