Education News

Broad Foundation Prize Could Come to Houston

HISD is a finalist for the broad prize — an award for overall performance and improvements in urban school districts.

HISD won the first ever Broad prize ten years ago.

Now the district is competing against two districts in south Florida and one in southern California for the education award, which will be announced tomorrow morning.

HISD Press Secretary Jason Spencer says the Broad Foundation tracks 75 urban districts for academic achievement, graduation rates, student improvement and other factors.

Districts cannot nominate themselves or apply for the award. Instead, they’re selected by a review board.

“What this really represents for us is an outside, independent validation that our school district and the students in Houston, more importantly, are moving in the right direction. That each year we’re seeing strong progress by multiple measures.”

The prize comes with scholarship money for students.

Spencer says as a finalist, Houston is already guaranteed to get $150,000 in scholarships. If HISD wins, they’ll get $550,000.

“There’s an application process and the Broad Foundation — they do screen the applicants. They’re looking for students who have a strong academic record, but also have a significant need.”

If HISD wins, it will become the only school district to receive the Broad prize twice.


Laurie Johnson

Laurie Johnson


Laurie is a native Houstonian who started her career at Houston Public Media in 2002. Laurie has covered a wide variety of topics for HPM, including the crash of the Space Shuttle Columbia, Hurricanes Katrina and Ike, and numerous elections. She is a frequent contributor to NPR and has been...

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