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Obama's $4 Billion Education Push

He may be in the midst of a health-care push, but President Obama is drawing a hard line when it comes to education, too: he's using $4 billion in federal aid—and the threat of withholding it—to force changes in schools around the country. Since taking office, Education Secretary Arne Duncan has met with state officials to lay down the law, telling them they have to embrace reforms like creating more charter schools and establishing performance pay for teachers or risk losing out on federal support. On Friday, Obama announces "Race to the Top," a competition for $4.35 billion in grants—a $100 million increase in education funding—to incentivize national schools. In an interview with The Washington Post, Obama laid out his plan to let "Race to the Top" motivate under-performing schools, saying that he is "counting on the fact that, ultimately, this is an incentive, this is a challenge for people who do want to change."