Thursday, August 26, 2010

Why We Lost Race To The Top

From the reviewers' comments:

Reviewer 1: "While much of the New Jersey proposal is strong, one important fact makes it unlikely to succeed. 49.9% of the State’s LEA’s will not participate in this process. This is a significant number and when combined with the only four school district union leaders that signed MOU’s (one percent of the total and approximately one half of one percent of the total number of district teacher union leaders) New Jersey will find it difficult to implement even successful elements of its RTTT proposal."

Reviewer 2: "New Jersey’s biggest challenge relates to the lack of support from the state’s NEA affiliate and the weak support for the sensitive evaluation provisions."

Reviewer 4: "The biggest question for this proposal is whether the reforms will truly make the statewide impact in light of non-support of local and state NEA affiliates. Most implementation depends heavily on local bargaining processes and outcomes. This could potentially curtail or water down a potentially very strong plan."

Reviewer 5: "The plan does a thorough job of describing how the state will use its RTTT leverage to ensure that participating districts use the new educator evaluation system to make decisions regarding professional development, compensation, tenure, and removal. However, the actual use of evaluations will be negotiated in each participating district, many of which did not get the signatures of union leaders on the MOU…The concern raised above regarding how negotiations will affect local implementation means that full points were not awarded."

Any questions?

1 comment:

kallikak said...

A better question might be: "Why would we want to win the Race to the Top"?

Maybe the lukewarm reaction of local boards and teachers reflects their perception that Arne Duncan's pie is half-baked, at best.

In our zeal to grab a few bucks to offset Christie's defunding, let's not forget that most aspects of RTTT are--to date--unproven.

How about a debate between Bret Schundler and Diane Ravitch on the merits?

There you go.