A rural consortium of 24 districts is among 16 applicants winning in the first-ever federal Race to the Top district competition.
The Green River Regional Educational Cooperative in Kentucky received the biggest grant—$40 million—out of the $400 million available; only one other winner won $40 million.
The consortium will serve 112 schools with more than 59,000 students, 61 percent of whom are low-income and rural. Its 24 districts represent 44 percent of the total number of districts benefiting from the 2012 federal competition.
The 16 winners beat out 372 applicants, and the grant awards range from $10 million to $40 million.
The consortium has at least four goals related to improving students’ achievement, according to reviewers’ comments on its application. Those include:
- increasing the number of students who have access to highly effective teachers and leaders;
- improving the academic and non-cognitive outcomes for students in prekindergarten through third grade;
- ensuring all students are on track to be college and career ready;
- ensuring all students are prepared for post-secondary careers, college and/or technical school.
They consortium’s plan involves increasing Advanced Placement and dual credit courses, developing students’ skills that affect college and career readiness, and using students’ test results to improve instruction.
Districts participating in the consortium include: Adair County Schools, Campbellsville Independent Schools, Carroll County Schools, Caverna Independent Schools, Cloverport Independent Schools, Daviess County Schools, Green County Schools, Hart County Schools, Henry County Schools, Logan County Schools, Metcalfe County Schools, Monroe County Schools, Ohio Valley Educational Cooperative, Owen County Schools, Owensboro Independent Schools, Russell County Schools, Shelby County Schools, Simpson County Schools, Spencer County Schools, Taylor County Schools, Trimble County Schools, Union County Schools, and West Point Independent Schools.
A version of this news article first appeared in the Rural Education blog.