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Federal Way schools among finalists for Race to the Top
The Road Map Project, a regional consortium of school districts from Federal Way, Auburn, Highline, Kent, Renton, Seattle and Tukwila, is one of 61 finalists for the federal Race to the Top competition.
The grant competition will pick 15 to 25 applications to award federal money to, with the grants ranging anywhere from $5 million to $40 million. The winners be be announced no later than Dec. 31.
"The Road Map District Consortium," as the group called itself on its application for the federal dollars, is asking for up to $40 million to help "drive educational improvement in South Seattle and South King County."
If the group's application is one of the winners, the Puget Sound Educational District will be the lead agency on project management and fiscal matters.
The 61 finalists are the cream of the crop from more than 372 applications and 200 districts. U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan said their selection is an acknowledgement of inspired thinking about education and education reform.
"These finalists are setting the curve for the rest of the country with innovative plans to drive education reform in the classroom," Duncan said. "This competition was designed to support local efforts to close the achievement gap and transform the learning environment in a diverse set of districts, but no matter who wins, children across the country will benefit from the clear vision and track records of success demonstrated by these finalists."
Federal Way Public Schools Superintendent Rob Neu said the consortium's selection to the next round of the competition is further incentive for local educators to continue working hard.
"We are fortunate to have seven school districts in the South Sound who are committed to working together on behalf of all our children. The Road Map Project districts have been working on these initiatives for the last two years, and the Race Grant serves as the impetus to further this work and ensure its success," Neu said in a written statement.