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[Susan notes: A number of educators shouted hosannah! in e-mails that their state "lost" in this first found of Race to the Top bribery. Priscilla offers a good letter to editor for others to follow.

This letter, sent to several papers, may well get published. Whether or not, such letters give the editorial staff something to think about. Keep them coming!]

Submitted to Santa Fe New Mexican but not published

To the editor

"Let Race to the Top Pass Us By"

We should be grateful New Mexico missed Race to the Top funding. The core standards that "winners" must agree to include mastery of Plato's Republic for 6th graders and Wordsworth's Preface to Lyrical Ballads for 9th graders. Huh? States must accept the standards en masse -- no picking and choosing those your community considers worthwhile or reasonable.

Moreover, virtually all of the per pupil funding New Mexico would receive would wind up going to testing, not to improving learning. Truth be told,nothing in Race to the Top will encourage students to be readers and learners outside of school, which are key to real education. We don't need more psuedo-reform and pseudo-accountability. Our children and grandchildren are much than a test score. The money just isn't worth the tradeoff. Be glad we didn't "win." Now let's get down to some real education reform.

Priscilla Shannon GutiƩrrez

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