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Teresa MacCartney named head of Race to the Top in Georgia

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported this week that a 1995 Cairo High School graduate has been selected by the state board of education to oversee $400 million in federal funds awarded to Georgia through President Obama’s Race to the Top education improvement program.
According to the AJC, during a special teleconference call Tuesday morning, the state board voted to name Teresa (Terri) Maxwell MacCartney the implementation director for Race to the Top in Georgia.
Mrs. MacCartney is the daughter of Larry and Juanita Maxwell of Cairo. She is married to Andrew MacCartney and they have two children, Brooke, 4, and William, 3.
Up until this week Mrs. MacCartney has served as deputy director of the Governor’s Office of Planning and Budget, a job, which according to the AJC, has given her oversight of other large infusions of money from the federal Stabilization and Education Jobs programs.
The new Race to the Top chief’s mother was justly pleased with the news and shared it with The Messenger. “We are very proud of her,” Juanita Maxwell said Tuesday.
Mrs. MacCartney’s new job will begin October 1 and her $144,200 annual salary will be paid for with Race to the Top funds, according to Matt Cardoza, a spokesman for the Georgia Department of Education.
Cardoza told the AJC, “Her job description is essentially to implement what was spelled out in the state’s application. There will obviously be a very heavy budget component, too, and that’s where her background is so strong.”
In August, Georgia, eight other states and the District of Columbia were picked to split $3.4 billion over four years as Round 2 winners in President Barack Obama’s Race to the Top, a competition designed to spark ambitious reforms, improve schools and close the achievement gap. Critics say it is a federal intrusion into a state and local issue, and Georgia teacher groups complained that they were left out of the application process.
Georgia’s money will be split, with $200 million earmarked for statewide initiatives. The rest will go to 26 local school districts — but not Grady County — that represent more than 40 percent of the state’s students and were part of the application.
MacCartney began her career in the Office of Planning and Budget in 2001, but she left in 2003 to become a senior policy adviser for budget and government affairs at the Georgia Student Finance Commission. She returned to OPB in 2005 as director of the agency’s education division.
As deputy director, she oversees the use of federal stimulus money and the divisions of technology and administration.
Mrs. MacCartney and her family reside in Marietta. Andrew MacCartney is employed by Georgia Public Broadcasting where he serves as a web manager.
The CHS graduate attended Georgia Southern where she earned her bachelors degree in math and then went on to earn a masters in public administration from GSU.

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