DENVER (AP) — Colorado has been awarded a federal education grant worth nearly $18 million — after being passed over three times for bigger awards from the “Race To The Top” competition.

The award announced Friday will be used to help pay for Colorado’s new statewide teacher evaluation system. It will also go toward math and science education.

The U.S. Department of Education handed out more than $4 billion last year to states that agreed to education overhauls such as new teacher measurements. Colorado started a new teacher-evaluation system but did not receive award money in the competitions.

Last week, Colorado narrowly missed a share of $500 million in grant money intended to jump-start improvements in early childhood education.

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