January 27, 2010
The federal government may soon do what New York officials have so far refused — allow the public to see the details of the state’s bid for federal Race to the Top grants.
Only five four! states have not publicly posted their Race to the Top applications (out of 41 who submitted), and New York is one of them. State education officials say that publishing the application will dull the state’s competitive edge if it doesn’t receive a prize in the first round and officials re-submit the application in the next phase. The public editor of the Education Writers Association, Linda Perlstein, asked U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan today if that was true:
“Absolutely not,” Secretary Duncan just said in a conference call with reporters, in response to my question. “This is about maximum transparency.”
Duncan told Perlstein that as soon as any personal information that might be included in the applications has been redacted, USDOE will be posting all states’ bids “in the not too distant future.” Even if federal education officials wait until the first-round grants are announced to post state submissions, as they originally said they would, the applications would go online two months before the second-round deadline in June.