States

Maryland Vote Complicates Race to Top Picture

By Sean Cavanagh — November 09, 2010 1 min read

We’ve written a lot about uncertainties that states and school districts face in attempting to make their grand Race to the Top plans a reality. A twist on that theme emerged yesterday in Maryland, when a legislative committee rejected a regulation on how to evaluate teachers based on student achievement, saying that the proposal went beyond the law that legislators had created on that topic.

The Washington Post raises questions about whether the committee’s move would imperil the state’s winning, $250 million Race to the Top blueprint. A member of the committee that rejected the regulations suggested that doesn’t believe it will.

Under state law, the committee’s vote sends the regulation back to the state board of education, which had crafted it in the first place. The board can either change the regulation, or not, and the state’s newly re-elected governor, Martin O’Malley, a Democrat, has broad discretion on whether to accept the board’s action, according to the state department of education.

Expect similar questions to emerge in other states as they consider making changes to their Race to the Top commitments. Federal officials may be asked to consider how-far-is-too-far, when it comes to those modifications.

A version of this news article first appeared in the State EdWatch blog.