Maryland Race to the Top Funding Endangered

A November 8 Washington Post article discusses the recent vote by the Joint Committee on Administrative, Executive, and Legislative Review (AELR) rejecting regulations requiring that 50 percent of a teacher’s evaluation be based on student progress.  The action may endanger the $250 million the State was awarded in federal Race to the Top funding.

The move is a challenge to a core component of the education plan proposed by Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) and State Schools Superintendent Nancy S. Grasmick in the spring. The federal money was awarded in part because Maryland promised that student progress would be such a large component of the evaluations, and President Obama has encouraged such changes. …

The disagreement hinges on whether the Maryland Board of Education overstepped a new state law that requires student growth to be a “significant” factor in teacher evaluations but limits any one criterion to 35 percent.

The regulations adopted by the Board of Education after the passage of the law would limit any single component of student progress, such as standardized test scores, to 35 percent. However, other measures of student progress would be combined to total 50 percent. [AELR Senate Chair Paul] Pinsky said that the legislature had specifically considered and rejected, the idea of student progress accounting for 50 percent of evaluations.

November 9 Herald-Mail article

November 9 Baltimore Sun article

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