Holding RttT winners half-way accountable

"Race to the Top states have made tremendous strides in
this first year," raved Arne Duncan in a Tuesday press release, praising
the “courage and commitment” that the twelve first-round grant recipients had
shown in implementing their proposals. In a dozen state-by-state progress
reports, the Department of Education described a year of great progress with
only a few bad actors—Florida, New York, and Hawaii—who,
rest assured, would be dealt with shortly. Kudos to Duncan for calling out three RttT winners
guilty of minimal progress, but the rosy overall assessment is troubling. Every
single state has reneged on at least one aspect of its proposal, and most are
just beginning to spend the billions Uncle Sam doled out in a competition that
looks increasingly more like a stroll than a sprint. While it’s probably
unreasonable to expect much more in the way of critical self-reflection from the
Obama Administration in an election year, stating the obvious isn’t the same as
accountability. Here’s hoping that the folks at 400 Maryland Avenue are much more
concerned than Tuesday’s reports suggest.

Big
Race to Top Problems in Hawaii, Florida, N.Y., Says Ed. Dept.,
” by Michele
McNeil, Politics K-12 blog, January
10, 2012

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