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Funding to help school districts implement the CCSS


The transition to the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) is well underway, with officials from many school districts finding that implementing the CCSS is sometimes challenging. For example, if school systems do not have adequate financial resources, purchasing new technology and other classroom resources that can prepare students for college and their careers can prove difficult.

Fortunately, school districts can take advantage of funding opportunities during the CCSS implementation process, and work toward ensuring that students receive the education they deserve.

US Department of Education to provide more Race to the Top funding
President Barack Obama's first term saw the creation of the competitive grant program known as Race to the Top. The purpose of this fund was, and still is, to reward states that are taking action in the area of education reform. In order to receive funding, school districts must show what steps they are taking toward improving instruction, such as implementing the CCSS, and how Race to the Top money would help them achieve their goals.

In a recent press release, the U.S. Department of Education announced that it had received 371 applications for its Race to the Top-District competition. Overall, more than 1,100 school districts are vying for almost $400 million in funding.

"We're thrilled at the response we've received from districts across the country that have developed innovative plans to drive education reform in the classroom," said Arne Duncan, the U.S. secretary of education. "We want to support local efforts that will close the achievement gap and transform the learning environment by funding those plans that have a clear vision and track record of success."

The recipients of the Race to the Top awards will be announced no later than December 31, 2012.

Guam receives millions in education funding
Outside of the U.S. mainland, the unincorporated U.S. territory of Guam has adopted the CCSS. The Guam Department of Education recently issued a press release that reported the island is the recipient of $20.6 million in grant funding from the U.S. Department of Education. Part of the money will go toward efforts that will prepare students and their teachers for the implementation of the CCSS.

"Through this grant, we can address the needs of our students by promoting effective teaching, involving parents and families, and strengthening curriculum and assessment," said Jon Fernandez, superintendent for the Guam Department of Education.