Thomas W. Carroll, the president of the Foundation for Education Reform and Accountability, provides a sound analysis of states' chances of winning Race to the Top funding in phase one. [Hat tip: Alexander Russo]
I would agree that Florida and Louisiana are the likeliest winners in phase one, and would be surprised if Delaware and Tennessee were not, at least, semifinalists. I'm not as keen on Colorado and Michigan, but agree that Georgia is a likely semifinalist as well. Here are some other possible phase one semifinalists from my vantage point: Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Massachusetts, North Carolina, Ohio and Rhode Island. Much will depend on how many states make the cut (Rick Hess says 10-15) and where Secretary Duncan draws the cut line.
Semifinalists are expected to be announced this coming week, possibly as early as Monday. Teams from those states will be invited to make a formal presentation before a panel of reviewers in Washington, DC sometime in March. Finalists are expected to be announced in April.
Who are your favorites? Which states am I overlooking? Which am I crazy to even be including in my list of possible semifinalists?
UPDATE: Education Week weighs in with its picks for RttT finalists.
Phase One winner picks: Florida, Illinois, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Tennessee
Phase One semifinalist picks: all above plus Colorado, Delaware, Indiana, Minnesota, Rhode Island
Wild cards: California, District of Columbia, North Carolina, Pennsylvania
UPDATE 2: Eduflack weighs in with some picks as well.
Barring any real surprises in the interview stage, I'm going with California, Colorado, Florida, Indiana, Louisiana, Ohio, Tennessee, and Rhode Island. How does that fare against the $4 billion pool? Cali and Florida will account for $1.4 billion. Ohio picks up $400 million. Indiana and Tennessee get $200 million apiece. Colorado and Louisiana split $300 million. Rhode Island gets $50 million. That's $2.55 billion on the first eight states.