Colorado's application for the second round of Race to the Top funding was unsuccessful for reasons that varied from a lack of union support to its inability to narrow an economically based achievement gap, according to the comments from federal reviewers. In assessing the failed bid, one educator said the process helped the state define its vision for education. But Lt. Gov. Barbara O'Brien said she would not recommend the state reapply in subsequent rounds, saying "something very fundamental in the process would have to change."

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