Chafee Just Doesn’t Understand….Race to the Top
“I’m wary of Race to the Top.” So says Lincoln Chafee, as he vaguely expresses concern over the long term state and municipal obligations that he implies could be generated by federal Race to the Top money. Except there really aren’t any because the goal of Race to the Top is to accelerate current (ie; already underway) education reform by helping pay for studies, computer systems, etc. that will help with such things as new teacher evaluation programs and the like. These reforms are intended to replace, not add onto, existing programs.
Chafee is simply playing a political game here. His spokesman, Mike Trainor, was on with WPRO’s Dan Yorke trying to spin this as Chafee expressing merely “cautionary” concerns, not criticism of RTTT. As Yorke explained, though, such expressions of “caution” are meant to be taken as criticism. Yorke calling it a “trial balloon” is spot on. The target? Most likely those within the education establishment with concerns about RTTT. Especially given that Chafee also lumped RTTT with No Child Left Behind, a favorite talking point of anti-RTTT folks.