Washington, D.C. Jessica Cunningham, principal of KIPP DC College Prep received a surprise honor at a school gathering today when she was awarded the distinguished Milken Educator. An annual recognition given to outstanding K12 teachers, principals and specialists who are furthering excellence in education, Cunningham will also receive a cash prize of $25,000.
"I congratulate Jessica for receiving this prestigious recognition. Its great to see charter school teachers being rewarded for their endless commitment and contribution to the nations future," said Nina Rees, president and CEO of the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools. "The charter school model has allowed teachers to be more creative and empowered them to reach students in new ways. This honor and gift acknowledges the work they are doing and also elevates the prestige of the teaching profession."
Each year, the winners are surprised with the award at school-wide assemblies, attended by distinguished officials, a Milken Family Foundation representative along with governors, state and federal leaders.
The Milken Educator Awards were created by Milken Family Foundation to attract, retain and motivate outstanding talent to the teaching profession. Since 1987, the Milken Family Foundation has devoted more than $138 million in funding to the Milken Educator Awards, including over $66 million in individual awards to more than 2,600 recipients plus powerful professional development opportunities and networking with leading education stakeholders.
About Public Charter Schools
Public charter schools are independent, public, and tuition-free schools that are given the freedom to be more innovative while being held accountable for advancing student achievement. Since 2010, manyresearch studieshavefound that students in charter schools do better in school than their traditional school peers. For example, one study by the Center for Research on Education Outcomes at Stanford University found that charter schools do a better job teaching low income students, minority students, and students who are still learning English than traditional schools. Separate studies by the Center on Reinventing Public Education and Mathematica Policy Research have found that charter school students are more likely to graduate from high school, go on to college, stay in college and have higher earnings in early adulthood.
About 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. Our 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.