Indiana calls off race for education reform grant
Not surprisingly, there are pages and pages of venom against teachers and unions on the newspaper website.
By Andy Gammill
Indiana will not apply a second time for
a piece of the $4.4 billion pot of federal "Race to the Top" education reform money
because state officials could not secure
Superintendent of Public Instruction
Tony Bennett, who last summer lauded
the state's chances of scoring big bucks
from the program, announced Thursday
that he would stop efforts under way to
write an application.
Without support from teachers unions,
he said, it wasn't worth the state's time
to apply again.
Union leaders shot back that Indiana's
original application had fallen so far
below the scoring threshold in the first
round that their support alone would not
be enough to salvage the state's plan.
Indiana would have been competing for
hundreds of millions of dollars. That
money would have been used to launch
an ambitious series of reforms that
Bennett has proposed.
But even without that money, Bennett
vowed the state would move forward
with those plans. They include creating
new pathways into teaching, assigning
letter grades to schools, starting a school
leadership academy, and implementing
systems that would evaluate teachers
and schools based on students'
standardized test scores.
"I am hopeful the unions will work with
us throughout the implementation
process," Bennett said, "and I promise to
make sure discussions between (the state)
and the unions are transparent to all
Nate Schnellenberger, president of the
Indiana State Teachers Association, said
he is willing to work with Bennett on
reform measures as other state unions
INDEX OF NCLB OUTRAGES