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TheBestSchools.org is now accepting nominations for the 2015 Escalante-Gradillas Prize for Best in Education. Each year, this $20,000 award alternately recognizes the outstanding achievements of a teacher or school administrator, shining a spotlight on educators who work tirelessly to make a positive and life-changing impact on their students. This year, a panel of independent judges will recognize the work of an administrator who has been a catalyst for remarkable academic achievement.
TheBestSchools.org invites schools as well as groups of individuals (students, alums, fellow faculty and staff, etc.) throughout the United States to nominate an educational leader who best exemplifies the commitment to learning, discipline, character-building, and high expectations that characterized Garfield High School when Jaime Escalante taught there and Henry Gradillas was its principal.
To initiate the nomination process, visit:
The deadline for nominations is June 1, 2015.
Escalante and Gradillas became famous in the 1980s for their inspiring work with at-risk students, a story told to compelling effect in the 1988 feature length film Stand and Deliver. Driven by the belief that every child deserves the same opportunities, Escalante and Gradillas pushed their students to settle for nothing less than the highest level of academic achievement, as demonstrated by their unprecedented success on the Advanced Placement Calculus Exams.
Escalante and Gradillas challenged their students to overcome the obstacles of poverty, drugs, and violence, as well as the stumbling blocks of indifference, indiscipline, and low expectations. These educational pioneers helped blaze a path for today’s brightest and boldest teachers and administrators. The Escalante-Gradillas Prize recognizes the work of today’s educators who best embody the drive, courage, and compassion of its namesakes.
TheBestSchools.org sponsors the Escalante-Gradillas Prize in keeping with its broader mission to support educational excellence and instructional intensity. The prize aims not only to reward but also to advance the work of its recipient.
TheBestSchools.org seeks candidates who exhibit practical wisdom in advancing the academic aspirations of students; who successfully balance innovation with proven “old school” values; and who, above all, get results—meaning that their students demonstrate a marked improvement in academic abilities and outcomes.
Eligibility for the 2015 Escalante–Gradillas Prize is limited to K–12 administrators. By administrators we mean principals, superintendents, guidance counselors, etc.—indeed, any staff member whose main job is helping teachers to teach rather than actually teaching. Candidates must be nominated by at least two endorsers (excluding the nominee). The winner of this year’s Escalante-Gradillas Prize for Best in Education will be announced in October 2015.
For more information about the prize, past recipients, or how to initiate the nomination process for a worthy candidate, visit: