A top U.S. Department of Education official warned yesterday that New York and other states risk losing millions of dollars in Race to the Top incentives if they back away from efforts to strengthen teacher job evaluations or other initiatives financed by the federal money.
The admonition came from Ann Whalen, director of the department's implementation support unit, who at a Washington news conference reported on the progress of New York, 10 other states and the District of Columbia in boosting educational achievement through Race to the Top funds.
Whalen acknowledged that New York State had scored significant successes, including the establishment of a training website, engageNY.org. The website is widely used by teachers and principals, both in New York and elsewhere, to get tips on teaching lessons based on the national Common Core academic standards.
But Whalen, in response to a reporter's question, cautioned that recent moves by New York State lawmakers to slow or derail Common Core initiatives, if pursued further, could jeopardize a portion of the state's Race to the Top award.
"In terms of New York or any state making significant change from the scope of the work or the commitments it made to win Race to the Top funds, there could be implications to its grant funds," Whalen said.
So much for not federally mandating Common Core.
So much for not dictating education policy from Washington.
So much for federalism.
Of course the funniest thing about this is how the feds think EngageNY is a "significant success."
Don't know any teachers who think that.
Or students who have been taught the EngageNY modules who think that either.
Who the hell wants to spend 17 lessons on one short story?
Nothing good about that - unless you're John King, Merryl Tisch, Andrew Cuomo, Bill Gates, and the USDOE.