The nation's top education official praised Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger on Tuesday for signing a bill that will make California eligible for competitive federal education funding.
Schwarzenegger signed the bill, SB 19 by Sen. Joe Simitian (D-Palo Alto), on Sunday, striking a clause in a 2006 law Simitian wrote that bars state use of testing data to determine educator pay or promotion.
"This is a victory for children," said U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan in a telephone interview Tuesday.
Obama administration officials have said that states applying for $4.35 billion in education funding can have no "firewalls" between student achievement data and teachers.
Schwarzenegger and others emphasized that the bill does not guarantee the state any federal funding and urged legislators to approve other legislation, including repealing the state's charter school cap, to give California a better chance to get education dollars.