+ Race to the Top Funds Benefit Central Ohio

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Ohio has won $400 million for education from the Obama “Race to the Top” initiative.

Five Franklin County districts will not get any of the cash, since they refused to sign the agreements: Gahanna-Jefferson, Hamilton, New Albany-Plain, South-Western and Westerville.

The other 11 school districts, as well as numerous charter schools in Franklin County will share around $30 million.  Columbus schools will receive the most, $20.5 million; Bexley and Grandview will receive the minimum $100,000.

An article in the Dispatch says Westerville’s superintendent and board president did sign a memorandum to participate, but teachers union officials declined over concerns about some initiatives they believe should be addressed in collective bargaining.  The same is true of Gahanna and South-Western schools, say local officials.

Ohio barely made the cut.  The state scored lowest among the 10 receiving Race to the Top stimulus funding in the second round of the competition.  We would have finished out of the money it we hadn’t gotten a bump following an in-person pitch by Governor Strickland and Ohio education leaders.

Massachusetts scored highest, with 471 points out of 500. Ohio, after improving its score, was just three points above 11th place New Jersey , with 440.8 points.

Governor Strickland says the federal money will speed implementation of his evidence-based school funding model.  There will be new residency and mentoring programs for teachers and efforts to close the achievement gap between white and minority students.

Strickland says Ohio is committed to education even in this global economic meltdown.  “We are poised to climb even higher in Ohio, and I believe the Race to the Top resources will allow us to do that.”

My source: Catherine Candisky and Jonathan Riskind’s 8/25/10 article in the Columbus Dispatch.  http://www.dispatchpolitics.com

tutoring in Columbus OH:  Adrienne Edwards   614-579-6021  or email  aedwardstutor@columbus.rr.com

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