Today the U.S. Department of Education announced it received 371 applications – representing more than 1,100 school districts – for the Race to the Top-District competition. The 2012 RTT-D program will provide close to $400 million to support locally developed plans that will personalize learning, directly improve student achievement and educator effectiveness, close achievement gaps, and prepare every student for success in college and careers.
"We're thrilled at the response we've received from districts across the country that have developed innovative plans to drive education reform in the classroom," said U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan. "We want to support local efforts that will close the achievement gap and transform the learning environment by funding those plans that have a clear vision and track record of success."
The Race to the Top-District competition supports classroom-level reform efforts that encourage transformative change within schools. Applicants were invited to demonstrate how they can personalize education for all students and provide school leaders and teachers with key tools that help them best meet their students' needs. The Department plans to support high-quality proposals from applicants across a variety of districts. These 4-year awards will range from $5 million to $40 million, depending on the population of students served through the plan. The Department is expecting to make 15-25 awards.
The Department has posted the list of districts who submitted an application on its website: http://www2.ed.gov/programs/racetothetop-district/index.html. The list includes all districts that applied and does not indicate their eligibility for the competition. Awards for the Race to the Top-District competition will be announced no later than Dec. 31, 2012.