Race to the Top bill signing today

LANSING, MI – Governor Granholm plans to sign a package of education-reform bills today. The reforms will allow Michigan to compete for as much as $400 million in federal "Race To The Top" funds.

Democrats and Republicans at the state Capitol battled for months over the reforms before they were completed on the last day of the 2009 session. Democrat Tim Melton chairs the House Education Committee. He thinks the reforms are serious enough to give the state a good shot at the money.

"Just based on what I've seen what other states have done I feel fairly confident," Melton says. "But again, for me - and maybe I'm a little different than some of the other Reps - I'm just happy the reforms are done."

The reforms include creating merit-pay for teachers, allowing more charter schools in failing districts, and hiring an official to take over the curricula of failing schools.

Melton says the federal government will announce the "Race To The Top" winners in April.