YES Prep Public Schools Wins Inaugural Broad Prize for Public Charter Schools
Press release (June 21, 2012) — The winner of the inaugural Broad Prize for Public Charter Schools is YES Prep Public Schools, a charter management organization in Houston, The Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation announced today. YES Prep Public Schools will receive $250,000 for college readiness efforts for low-income students.
YES Prep Public Schools, a system of 10 middle and high schools that serves almost all low-income and minority students, eliminated nearly all income and ethnic achievement gaps. In addition, YES Prep's students are outperforming their higher income and white peers statewide in most cases — something very few, if any, other large urban school systems nationwide to date have achieved.
The Broad (rhymes with "road") Prize for Public Charter Schools is a new annual award to honor the urban public charter school system that has demonstrated the most outstanding overall student performance and improvement in the nation in recent years while reducing achievement gaps for poor and minority students.
U.S. Deputy Education Secretary Tony Miller and Broad Foundation Senior Policy Director Lydia Logan announced the award at the 2012 National Charter Schools Conference in Minneapolis before a crowd of more than 3,000 public charter school leaders gathered at the Minneapolis Convention Center.
"It is remarkable to see a system of schools that is not only taking students who are one or more grade levels behind in math and reading, but also making sure that every single graduate is accepted into a four-year college," said Miller, who opened the envelope and revealed the winner.
A 14-member review board of prominent education researchers, policy leaders, practitioners and executives from around the country evaluated publicly available student achievement data on 20 large established urban charter school systems and found that YES Prep Public Schools had the best overall student academic performance between 2007 and 2011. The Broad Foundation did not play a role in selecting the winner.