Florida last week was among 19 finalists competing for more than $3 billion in the second round of federal education funding in the Race to the Top program. Other finalists from the Southeast region are Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, North Carolina, and South Carolina.

The District of Columbia and 35 states submitted plans for funding comprehensive education reform efforts aimed at instituting rigorous standards for education and teaching, turning around low-performing schools, and building better data systems.

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