Generally, I think this is about the number of and group of applicants that most expected, including me. The two biggest surprises on the list are Arizona (although it received support from Gates in Phase 2) and Hawaii. There are no shocking omissions from the list, although some felt that the likes of Arkansas, Connecticut, Michigan, Oklahoma and Utah had outside shots at success.
Want to read all the finalists’ applications to see what’s so good about ’em? You can find links to all the applications here.
Winners are expected to be named by the U.S. Department of Education in late August or early September.