The two consortia that won grants from the U.S. Department of Education to create more uniform assessments are getting some extra cash to complete their work, the department announced today.
The two winners, which collectively represent 44 states and the District of Columbia, will split $31.7 million. The money is aimed at helping the consortia with the implementation of the new assessment systems. In order to get the extra funding, the consortia will have to sketch out how they plan to transition to the new assessments. Their plans could address professional development needs, and how the two consortia plan to coordinate with each other to share ideas and strategies, among other issues.
So where is this money coming from? It’s basically what was left over after the department allocated grants for the $4 billion Race to the Top state competition, the $350 million assessment competition, and the $650 million Investing in Innovation grant program. A big chunk of that leftover change, about $20 million, was already in the assessment program’s coffers, but hadn’t been awarded yet.
The Obama administration is hoping to extend both the Investing in Innovation program, and Race to the Top for another year.