A consortium of 11 states armed with federal funds to develop K-12 assessment tests for English students based on the contentious Common Core standards wants an outside firm to develop a PR strategy for its efforts on a six-figure contract.

elpa21The Washington, D.C.-based Council of Chief State School Officers is overseeing an RFP process for the communications assignment on behalf of the consortium, known as English Language Proficiency Assessment for the 21st Century, or ELPA21. The group is using $6.3M in federal Dept. of Education funds to develop the assessment system based on the well-known but controversial Common Core guidelines and developed by the Council, San Francisco-based non-profit WestEd, and an initiative of Stanford University.

ELPA21, which acknowledges the "local and national media attention" that the Common Core and science standards are instigating, released an RFP open through June 24 for a PR pact worth up to $300K through Sept. 2016.

The group includes Arkansas, Florida, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Nebraska, Ohio, South Carolina, Washington and West Virginia. Oregon is the lead state overseeing the project.

Target audience for its work includes parents, students, district leaders, media, legislators and other stakeholders.

A two-year PR contract is expected to result from the review.

View the RFP (link).