Recently, the Department held its first meeting with the Race to the Top grant winners. It was wonderful to help welcome delegates from winning states and start rich conversations about implementing each of their plans.
To be sure, implementation is where the real challenge lies for many of the states. We at the Department understand that making such comprehensive reforms is a monumental task, and so one of our top priorities is to ensure that states have the support and technical assistance they need to make their plans successful.
In fact, this support for states, districts, and schools has been our priority in OESE this past year, not just for Race to the Top but for all of our grant programs. I know from my experience as superintendent that high quality technical assistance and support from the federal level is essential in order to make and sustain improvements among our students. That’s why the Department will continue its emphasis on this support, through technical assistance, shared models, and open dialogue. We want to truly become partners with states and districts in the important work of improving educational outcomes for students. And we encourage all of you to get in touch with any suggestions on how we can better do this – e-mail me at AskDrT@ed.gov with your ideas.