Missouri out of running for federal school grants

Tuesday, July 27, 2010 | 5:15 p.m. CDT; updated 5:38 p.m. CDT, Wednesday, September 15, 2010

JEFFERSON CITY — Missouri is out of the running in a national competition for federal school reform grants.

Eighteen states and the District of Columbia were named Tuesday as finalists in the federal Race to the Top program. Federal officials expect to divide $3.4 billion in grants among 10 to 15 winning states.

Missouri Education Commissioner Chris Nicastro says she's disappointed but not surprised the state was not named a finalist. Nicastro says Missouri spent about a year considering educational improvements and will pursue them even without federal money.

Those ideas include developing models for curriculum and teacher evaluations and building better data systems to monitor student development.

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