Ohio got $400 million in Race to the Top stimulus funding to do five things over four years:
- Increase high school graduation rates by .5 percent per year;
- Reduce graduation rate gaps by 50 percent;
- Reduce performance gaps by 50 percent;
- Reduce the gap between Ohio and the best-performing states in the nation by 50 percent; and
- More than double the increase in college enrollment for 18 and 19 year olds.
On Tuesday, educators and administrators from across the state will review their progress at a convention in Columbus called “Ohio’s RttT Strategy: One Down…Three to Grow.”
But if you’re heading to Columbus for the day, don’t expect the Ohio Department of Education to provide lunch or snacks. In response to several inquiries, the department informed conference participants that, per the U.S. Department of Education, food is “unnecessary in accomplishing the overall objectives of the [Race to the Top] program.” No $16 muffins here.
So where does Ohio stand in meeting its Race to the Top goals?:
- Graduation: Ohio is using the 2010 graduation rate as its baseline for the graduation rate goal, so there as yet no results to report for the state’s graduation rate goals.
- Reducing performance gaps among Ohio students: For this goal, Ohio is looking at math and reading performance on state standardized tests. For the 2010-11 school year, the gaps between student groups narrowed, but Ohio will need to make larger gains in the coming years in order to meet this goal.
- Reducing the gap between Ohio and top-performing states: For this goal, Ohio is comparing our fourth and eighth graders to Massachusetts’ fourth and eighth graders on the math and reading National Assessment of Education Progress. The most recent test results are for 2009, so there are as yet no results to report.
We’ll have more from Columbus tomorrow on what exactly school districts and the state are doing to reach those goals.