LANSING, Mich. – Michigan is once again vying for a share of Race to the Top federal grant money, this time focusing on early childhood education, according to a report at Mlive.com.

About $500 million will be handed out in this third phase of the federal program, with awards based on the number of low-income children in each state that applies, Mlive reported. Michigan is one of 35 applicants to date.

The Michigan Department of Education application says that half of all Michigan children under the age of 5 live in families with incomes of 200 percent of the federal poverty level or less, according to Mlive. It also says that Michigan would use the grant money to boost state-funded preschools, Head Start and other programs through a network created by the education department, the Community Health and Human Services department and the Early Childhood Investment Corp.

Michigan failed to win Race to the Top funding in its first two attempts, Mlive reported.

SOURCES:

Mlive.com, “Third time's the charm? Michigan tries again for Race to the Top funds after two failed bids,” Oct. 21, 2011

Michigan Department of Education, “Michigan Race to the Top – Early Learning Challenge

FURTHER READING:

Mackinac Center for Public Policy, “The Great Early Education Gamble,” May 14, 2010

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