The applications for Race To The Top — the Department of Education’s initiative that funds various school districts’ efforts to implement educational reforms that will lead to better teaching and learning — have been finalized, and school districts nationwide can now vie for the more than $400 million in funding for the participating schools.
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 learning environments and accelerate student achievement.
The program began in 2009, one of several enacted as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. The 2012 final program invites applications from districts or groups of districts that serve at least 2,000 students with 40 percent or more qualifying for free or reduced-price lunch.
“Race to the Top helped bring about groundbreaking education reforms in states across the country. Building off that success, we’re now going to help support reform at the local level with the new district competition,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan. “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 Race to the Top-District competition will help us meet that goal.”