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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Pasco Race to the Top plan coming up for vote



The time for editing and advice has come to a close. Now the Pasco County School Board has to decide whether it really wants to pursue the education reform proposals put forth in the state's Race to the Top grant.

Some of the items in there -- including a heavier reliance on test scores to evaluate teachers -- are controversial. There's also a lingering question of whether the district's share of the grant, about $8 million over four years, would be enough to cover the planning and implementation costs.

Then there's the pesky issue of stakeholder buy-in. While the superintendent and School Board have shown every indication of support for RTTT, the United School Employees of Pasco has not. USEP president Lynne Webb tells the Gradebook she hasn't made a final decision yet, but, "At this point I'm really not terribly inclined to sign it. ... I see nothing to gain for the union by signing it and more to lose."

Florida DOE officials have said they might give some of the money to districts even without union support, despite all the show made to win such backing after a failed first application in which only five unions joined in. That has made it easier for Webb to stick with her opposition, if she wants.

The item comes for a board vote on Tuesday and is due to the state shortly after. Stay tuned.

[Last modified: Wednesday, October 27, 2010 11:16am]


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