Since 2004, Achieve has worked to align high school expectations with the demands of the real world to ensure all students graduate from high schools with the skills and knowledge needed to be successful in their next steps. Through the American Diploma Project (ADP) Network, Achieve is working in partnership with 35 states to build momentum and urgency for action.
Passage of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) and the creation of the Race to the Top Fund (RTTT) in early 2009 provides ADP states with an historic opportunity to accelerate these efforts through dramatic reforms to their P-20 education systems. States competing in the Race to the Top must redouble their efforts to boost high school expectations and assessments but also to tackle other roadblocks – such as weak use of data, inequitably distributed teachers, and chronically low-performing schools – that have impeded progress towards college- and career-ready success.
Achieve prepared the Race to the Top: Accelerating College and Career Readiness guides to help state leaders take advantage of this exceptional competition. The guides look at RTTT through a college and career ready lens, offering specific advice and promising practices to help ADP Network leaders build on the work they have already begun and maximize the new opportunities presented through RTTT. In four separate briefs, we share recommendations for meeting the Race to the Top challenge and pushing above and beyond the minimum criteria in each of the four core reform areas states are asked to address in their RTTT reform plans:
- Standards and Assessments
- P-20 Longitudinal Data Systems
- Teacher Effectiveness
- Low-Performing Schools
Achieve has also developed two additional briefs focused on building support and engagement from key stakeholders for states' RTTT plans and planning for success and sustainability: