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MEDIA WATCH: Chicago's Lies Go Viral Across USA as Duncan announces first 'Race To The Top' state winners... Most Media Praise 'Race To The Top' Without Checking The Silly Bases For It

As the announcement came in from the U.S. Department of Education on March 4, 2010, that most states had "lost" the first round of the so-called "Race To The Top" program one thing is clear about the biggest winner: Obama administration propaganda, based on the Big Lie first made up and distributed from Chicago's "school reform." One of the most obvious problems with the corporate media coverage of U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan's "Competition" is that the media have accepted the premise that there should be competition between and among states for federal education funds, rather than having those funds apportioned on the basis of the number of children in public schools.

For decades, the ideas embodied in Duncan's 'Race To The Top' competition would have been unthinkable in a country where public education for all children is a right, not the privilege of wealth or those who can "compete" in some bureaucratic game of King Of The Hill. At least for now, the brainwashing that has taken place praising "market solutions", "innovation," and "competition" has resulted in the coverage below from the wealthy men and women who write the editorials in the nation's major media.

First: The release of the 15 states that "made the cut" for the first round of Race To The Top funds: From an Education Commission of the States alert:

Today the United States Department of Education (USDoE) announced 15 states and the District of Columbia as finalists for the first round of the $4 billion Race to the Top (RTTT) competitive grant program. The 16 RTTT finalists are:

· Colorado

· Delaware

· The District of Columbia

· Florida

· Georgia

· Illinois

· Kentucky

· Louisiana

· Massachusetts

· New York

· North Carolina

· Ohio

· Pennsylvania

· Rhode Island

· South Carolina and

· Tennessee

All of the states chosen as first round finalists will be required send a team of up to five people to make a presentation in defense of their applications to the USDoE on the week of March 15th. Not all first round finalists will win first round funding. First round winners will be announced in early April.

States not selected in the first round_

The 25 states that turned in applications and were not chosen as first round finalists will receive information from the USDoE in early April detailing why their application fell short. These 25 states - along with the 10 states that did not apply in the first round - can submit applications for the second round of RTTT funding by June 1^st . Second round winners will be announced in early September.

The following are editorials and commentary from various places following the March 4 RTTT announcements:

FROM THE SACRAMENTO BEE (Sacramento, CA):

Published: Friday, Mar. 5, 2010 - | Page 12A

There's no sugarcoating the news. California failed to be a finalist in the first round of the competition among the states for federal Race to the Top grants.

Sixteen of 41 states that applied made the first cut, as Secretary of Education Arne Duncan announced Thursday.

At this stage, there's no point in dwelling on failure. There's no time to waste to do the work that will put California in a more competitive position for the second round – with applications due in June.

The states won't know until the first-round winners are announced in April how they scored out of 500 possible points, or what their strengths and weaknesses were.

But as Kathryn Radtkey-Gaither, undersecretary in the [California] governor's Office of Education, said Thursday, California can begin work on legislation it already passed and "ask everyone what they would do to make the application stronger."

In the next three months, California can work harder to bring more school districts and more teachers unions on board. When the application was submitted in mid-January, 804 of the state's 1,729 districts (representing 58 percent of the state's students) had signed on to participate. And of those districts, only 26 percent of teachers unions signed on. California can do better.

The state also can show by its actions that it is moving forward with using data

to determine student needs and measure teacher effectiveness; focusing its

standards to get beyond the "mile wide, inch deep" criticism of current

standards; taking real steps to turn around historically low-performing schools;

putting outstanding teachers and principals where they are needed most.

The second round in the competition won't be easy. The current finalists who

don't win in April will be back in the pool.

If California wants to be in the race, it must demonstrate it really wants to

win. Thursday's disappointing announcement serves one good purpose: It should

bring an end to California smugness and complacency about its education system

and what it will take to really reform it.

[THE FOLLOWING ARTICLE IS FROM THE SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE (March 6, 2010). It is becoming typical of the simple fact that in editorial rooms and corporate boards, the mindless acceptance of Arne Duncan's ridiculous RTTT strictures have become gospel. As our friends across the USA send in these examples of capitalist propaganda, we'll queue them up here. George N. Schmidt, Editor, Substance].

SF Chronicle Applauds CA Democratic Party Leaders For "Race To The Top" Charter Privatization Drive http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2010/03/06/ED1E1CBI13.DTL

Why did California fail Race to the Top test? Saturday, March 6, 2010 Why didn't California win a finalist position in the federal Race to the Top program?

The U.S. Department of Education announced Thursday that 15 states and the District of Columbia were finalists for the first round of funding from Race to the Top, a competition worth $4.3 billion in federal dollars. Despite a hard-fought victory to pass important educational reforms through the Legislature, California was glaringly absent from the list.

This is unsettling news. States that seemingly hadn't made reforms at all — like Kentucky, which doesn't permit charter schools, and New York, where the state Legislature failed to repeal a charter school cap — were among the finalists.

Not California. What happened?

We won't know for sure until April, when the feds will explain their reasons for rejecting California's application. But if we had to hazard a guess, it would be that the Race to the Top officials chose to pay more attention to the education squabbling in California than they did to our application.

Fortunately, there are some state legislators who remain passionately dedicated to reform, and Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger is too. State Sen. Gloria Romero, D-Los Angeles, who authored some of the hardest-fought reforms, insists that the state will still compete for the second round of Race to the Top funding. That application is due in June, which doesn't give California much time to figure out what went wrong this time.

One thing that definitely went wrong was the attitude of the state teachers' unions. Union leaders fought the reform legislation at every turn and managed to water down the package that eventually passed in January. Marty Hittelman, president of the California Federation of Teachers, even said he wasn't sorry that California lost the first round. And in part because of these kinds of feuds within the education community, lots of California school districts opted out of participation in Race to the Top. In Kentucky, every single school district signed on.

It won't be easy to unite the educational community behind reform legislation, especially in an election year. But if free money and our children's future isn't incentive enough, nothing will be.



Comments:

March 5, 2010 at 10:40 PM

By: Jim Vail

Ohio?

Ohio made it into the finals?? The Democrat governor was actually defending public education and hitting hard against charters. This could be further proof it's only a matter of time before every "political" opponent to massive job cuts and privatization is bought off and neutralized.

March 5, 2010 at 11:45 PM

By: Jay Rehak

Disgrace at the Top

The "Race to the Top" is a cruel continuation of George Bush's disastrous "No Child Left Behind" law, which was and is nothing more than the systematic transfer of public assets to private edupreneurs.

By forcing states to compete for federal money, the Secretary of Education is turning well intentioned educators and public officials against one another.

There should be no "competition" for Federal money. The money being doled out comes from the national treasury, which is to say, it comes from every state in the Union. The idea that one state gets money while another doesn't because that state "didn't play ball" with the Secretary of Education is unfair on its face.

Mr. Duncan, who is more of an expert at basketball than education should know that a rigged game is offensive to everyone on the court.

A better way to divvy up government funds is to send money to states on a per capita basis. In that way, no one is cheated of funds based on a partial referee.

In short, the federal government should not be penalizing states in the Union who clearly understand that charter schools are not the answer.

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