The following is a list of facts about winners in Rounds I and II of Race to the Top (RTTT):
12 Number of winning states
7 Number of winning states that received Race to the Top technical assistance grants from the Gates Foundation technical assistance [Florida, Georgia, Massachusetts, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Tennessee]
4 Number of winning Southern states [Tennessee, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina]
1 Number of winning Round II first-time applicants [Maryland]
1 Number of winning states selected as a finalist for the first time in Round II [Hawaii]
0 Number of winning states without a charter lawCreating Healthy and Responsible Teens Initiative
MSF Partners with the Coordinated School Health Program at the Department of Health
Mississippi First is excited to announce a new partnership with the Coordinated School Health Program, a joint effort by the Mississippi Department of Health and the Mississippi Department of Education, to reduce rates of teen birth and sexually transmitted infections.  This month, MSF helped the Coordinated School Health Program write its application for funding from the Personal Responsibility Education Program (PREP), a federal grant program for states that includes money for comprehensive sex education.  If this grant is awarded to Mississippi, local school districts will be able to apply for funds to implement research-based comprehensive sex education programs as well as other “adulthood preparation topics” like career development, goal-setting, and healthy relationships.In order to participate, school districts must adopt a personal responsibility education policy, such as the model policy crafted by MSF this summer.  Mississippi First has analyzed Mississippi’s most recent teen birth rate data and divided Mississippi counties into three priority groups based on the severity of the teen birth rate among 15-19-year-olds.  This fall, we will make trips to school districts in Priority 1 counties to advocate for the adoption of our model policy and educate them about possible funding from PREP.

In the map below, you will see each county color-coded by the severity of its birth rate.  A word of caution: Just because a county is in the Priority 3 category does not mean its teen birth rate is truly low, only that the county’s teen birth rate is lower than the state average.  In reality, only 4 counties in Mississippi have teen birth rates below the national average.  Mississippi’s average teen birth rate is 60% higher than the national average (65.6 v. 41.5).  Sadly, almost every county in Mississippi has a long way to go in reducing teen births.

Priority 1 counties have extremely high teen birth rates (1B=over 1 standard deviation of the state average; 1A=over 2 standard deviations of the state average).
Priority 2 counties have high teen birth rates (between the average and 1 standard deviation).
Priority 3 counties have teen birth rates lower than the state average (3A=between the average and 1 standard deviation below; 3B=between 1 standard deviation and 2 standard deviations below; 3A=below 2 standard deviations).  

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