IDEA, Success Academy, YES Prep Named Finalists for 2016 Broad Prize for Public Charter Schools

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WASHINGTON, D.C. and LOS ANGELES Success Academy in New York and IDEA Public Schools and YES Prep Public Schools in Texas have been named the finalists for the 2016 Broad Prize for Public Charter Schools, the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools and The Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation announced today.

The $250,000 Broad Prize for Public Charter Schools, awarded to the best-performing charter management organization in the country, will be announced on June 27 at the National Charter Schools Conference in Nashville, Tenn. This year, The Broad Foundation is partnering with the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools to present the prize.

A seven-member review board of national education experts reviewed publicly available student performance and college-readiness data from the 2014-15 school year for 30 of the countrys largest public charter management organizations, compiled and analyzed by American Institutes for Research. The review board found that IDEA Public Schools, Success Academy and YES Prep had the best overall performance, especially serving low-income students of color. The Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation, which funds the prize, and the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, which administers the prize, did not play a role in selecting the top three charter systems.

This years finalists include a previous winner, YES Prep, which won the inaugural charter prize in 2012; a previous finalist, IDEA Public Schools, which was among the top three charter management organizations in 2014 and 2015; and Success Academy, which was eligible this year for the first time because it has expanded the number of students it serves.

The Broad Prize is an opportunity to celebrate the success of charter schools that are improving academic performance while reducing achievement gaps, said Nina Rees, president and CEO of the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools. These three school systems are doing a phenomenal job of teaching all students and preparing them for a strong path ahead, and we really hope that public schools across the country can learn from their success.

In this fifth year of The Broad Prize for Public Charter Schools, we had the highest number of eligible charter management organizations, which demonstrates that these systems are growing and serving more low-income families and communities of color, said Gregory McGinity, executive director of The Broad Foundation. These three charter organizations are proving that all students can achieve at high levels, and were pleased to recognize their continuing progress.

Non-profit charter management organizations eligible for the 2016 award operated a minimum of five schools since 2011-12 with at least 2,500 students and served sizable percentages of low-income students and students of color. Organizations cannot apply for the award nor be nominated.

IDEA Public Schools is a network of 44 elementary, middle and high schools in Texas that serves more than 24,000 students in San Antonio, Austin and the Rio Grande Valley. IDEAs student population is 87 percent low-income and 95 percent Hispanic. In 2014-2015, all of IDEAs schools were in the top 30 percent of Texas schools for advanced proficiency for low-income and Hispanic students in elementary, middle and high school English, math and science. That same year, 97 percent of their Hispanic students took the ACT, while the high school graduation rate for IDEAs Hispanic students was 99 percent.

Success Academy Charter Schools is the largest public charter school network in New York City, with 34 elementary, middle and high schools serving 11,000 students in Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens and the Bronx. Success Academys student population is 76 percent low-income and 93 percent black or Hispanic. In the analysis of assessment data for the 2014-2015 school year, Success Academys low-income, black and Hispanic middle school students outperformed their non-low-income and white peers statewide in English, math and science at both the proficient level and the advanced level.

YES Prep is a network of 15 middle and high schools that serves more than 10,000 students in Houston. YES Preps student population is 87 percent low-income and 85 percent Hispanic. In 2014-2015, YES Preps Hispanic high school students scored in the top 20 percent of all high schools in Texas at both the proficient and advanced levels. Nearly 60 percent of YES Preps Hispanic students took an Advanced Placement (AP) course that year, with nearly half of those students achieving a passing score of 3 or higher. Ninety-six percent of YES Preps Hispanic students took the SAT, and 88 percent graduated.

The Broad Prize for Public Charter Schools awards $250,000 to the large public charter school system determined to have the best overall academic performance serving low-income students of color. The prize winnings must be used for college-readiness efforts. Previous winners of The Broad Prize for Public Charter Schools include Noble Network of Charter Schools in 2015, KIPP Schools in 2014, Uncommon Schools in 2013 and YES Prep Public Schools in 2012. Winners are ineligible for three years following their win.

The National Alliance for Public Charter Schools
The National Alliance for Public Charter Schools is the leading national nonprofit organization committed to advancing the public charter school movement. Its mission is to lead public education to unprecedented levels of academic achievement by fostering a strong charter sector. For more information, please visit www.publiccharters.org.

TheEli and Edythe Broad Foundation
Founded by entrepreneur Eli Broad and his wife Edythe, both graduates of Detroit Public Schools, TheEli and Edythe Broad Foundation is a philanthropy that seeks to ensure that every student in an urban public school has the opportunity to succeed. Bringing together top education experts and practitioners,the foundation funds system-wide programs and policies that strengthen public schools by creatingenvironments that allow good teachers to do great work and enable students of all backgrounds to learnand thrive. For more information, visit www.broadeducation.org.