Since last summer, states have been competing for the $4.35 billion that the Obama administration allocated for Race to the Top. This program was introduced by Education Secretary Arne Duncan and is based on a 500-point scale on which states are awarded points based on meeting specific criteria. The most criticized point of this program is tying teacher pay to students’ performance on standardized test scores. As Julianne Ong Hing writes,
Teachers themselves claim that the “Race to the Top” program solidifies the primacy of test scores in a way “No Child Left Behind,” introduced in the Bush administration, only began to. They also say it’s unfair to tie their performance—and their students—to tests that change annually.