EdSource Today: Fresno coaxes union to sign, enters Race to the Top

By John Fensterwald

If they awarded points for effort, Fresno Unified would get two Race to the Top grants.

After a marathon meeting that concluded early Friday morning, Superintendent Michael Hanson and leaders of the Fresno Teachers Association agreed on wording of the district’s application for a $37.3 million piece of the $400 million competition open to districts nationwide.

It had looked like Fresno would join Los Angeles, San Francisco, Oakland, Sacramento City and Long Beach, members of a district collaborative, the California Office to Reform Education (CORE), whose unions had refused to give their required consent for the submission of an application, primarily because teacher evaluations using standardized test scores had to be an element. But Hanson used a three-day deadline extension, which the federal Department of Education granted districts because of disruptions caused by Hurricane Sandy, to keep trying to persuade the Fresno Teachers Association to say yes. Pressure mounted, as community leaders, two city council members, business leaders, and a group of ministers called on Teachers Association president Eva Ruiz to sign on.

via Fresno coaxes union to sign, enters Race to the Top – by John Fensterwald.

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