Charter operator KIPP Schools has won the 2014 Broad Prize for Public Charter Schools -- and will use the $250,000 award to create a college scholarship fund for students of KIPP and two other charter organizations that were runners-up in the nationwide contest.
KIPP serves 50,000 students in 141 schools, including eight in the Bay Area. More than 86 percent of KIPP students come from low-income families. Of KIPP students who completed eighth grade, more than 93 percent graduate high school and 83 percent have gone to college.
The Broad Prize honors student performance, improvement and achievement of minority and low-income students. The Broad reviewers, including education researchers, policy leaders and executives, examined data from the 2009-10 school year and considered student outcomes, size, demographics and ability to expand.
KIPP spokesman Steve Mancini said winning the prize evokes confidence as well as humility. "The other two nominees were just as deserving as us, so why not share it?" he said. "The ultimate prize is kids earning a college diploma."
KIPP operates a middle school and high school in San Jose, and will open two more middle schools, beginning with just the fifth grade, in the Franklin-McKinley and Alum Rock school districts in August. The organization also runs schools in Oakland, San Lorenzo and San Francisco.
Contact Sharon Noguchi at 408-271-3775. Follow her at Twitter.com/noguchionk12.