Dear DSST Staff and Friends,
I am extremely excited and humbled to share with you that DSST is the winner of the 2018 Broad Prize for Public Charter Schools. To be named as the top public charter network in the country is a tremendous honor, and this award belongs to our students, staff and families, whose hard work is the foundation of our success. While none of us choose the work of public education and eliminating inequity to win awards, this is a great affirmation of 14 years of excellence.
I also want to congratulate our fellow finalists, Achievement First and Uncommon Schools. Much of our success is a result of the great learning we have done with these two organizations over the last 15 years.
The Broad Prize is determined based on publicly available student performance data from the 2015-16 and 2016-17 school years for 41 of the country’s largest public charter management systems. The review board considers student outcomes, college readiness indicators, scalability, size, special education results and student demographics such as poverty. This data-driven approach makes the award all the more meaningful to us.
The prize comes with a $250,000 award that must be used for college-readiness initiatives for low-income students and students of color, which aligns perfectly with our college success goals. We are placing more emphasis around finding colleges and universities which are the right academic, financial, and social fit for DSST graduates. By matching them with the right schools and continuing to support them once in college, we can help put them on a path to completing college and earning a degree.
Winning the Broad Prize is a great achievement, but we know we still have work to do to serve all of our students with excellence. Continuous improvement is part of our ethos, part of our culture, and we’re eager to work on ways to get better during the next school year.
Each of you play a vital piece in DSST’s success and you make recognition like the Broad Prize possible. Thank you for your continued partnership as we work toward providing a world-class education for our students.
Bill Kurtz - CEO of DSST Public Schools