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RCPS misses cut for Race to the Top grant
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Rockdale County Public Schools announced that it did not win the $25 million grant from the national Race to the Top district competition.

"We are a bit disappointed, but not discouraged," Superintendent Richard Autry told Board of Education members during its Dec. 19 meeting.

The U.S. Department of Education sponsors the Race to the Top district competition where applicants, "demonstrate how they can personalize education for all students in their schools," according to the federal DOE Web site.

There were 226 total applicants for this year's grant across the nation and RCPS was the only school district in Georgia to be named a finalist. Out of the 31 finalists, Rockdale ranked tenth, according to Autry. Only five districts were selected for the grant.

Autry said the district continues to be "affirmed," and read a few of the feedback comments RCPS received from competition reviewers. The comments lauded the district's vision and learning environment for student success. The link between the district's initiatives and strategic plan was also addressed.

"One of the cornerstones of RCPS is traditional educational barriers are not allowed to limit the opportunities available to its students," Autry read. "And I think that one, the latter, is the one that I take to heart the most because it means that we don't have a one-size-fits-all educational system, that our system is purely tailored to the needs of our students."