The Miami-Dade school district has won the Broad Prize, considered the top award in U.S. public education.
The district, a five-time finalist, shone for its academic gains, especially the advanced work and improved graduation rates for black and Hispanic students.
The award brings national prestige to the district and more than half a million dollars in scholarships to Miami-Dade students.
The announcement was made at a ceremony at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City, which Superintendent Alberto Carvalho and board members Perla Tabares Hantman, Raquel Regalado and others attended.
“Miracles are possible, even when you have to wait five years,” Carvalho said as he accepted the award.
In South Florida, Miami-Dade school district employees erupted into cheers and at the School Board auditorium, where they watched the ceremony in a live broadcast that got interrupted with technical hiccups.
Miami-Dade County Public Schools beat out peer Florida school district and first-time finalist, Palm Beach County, as well as Corona-Norco Unified School District in Southern California and the Houston Independent School District, which was the inaugural winner of prize 10 years ago.