A $1 million Yass Prize was awarded to Valiant Cross Academy, an all-boys Christian school based in Montgomery, on Wednesday.

Now in its third year, the Yass Prize, known as the Pulitzer of Education Innovation, seeks, rewards, and celebrates innovative organizations trying to break the cycle of ineffective education failing students across the country. 

Combined, Valiant Cross Academy, the nine finalists, and 23 remaining semifinalists received $13 million in funding through this year's Yass Prize program.

"Valiant Cross Academy represents the gold standard of education innovation in America," Janine Yass, co-founder with her husband, Jeff Yass, of the Yass Prize and the Yass Foundation for Education, said. "Our goal is to accelerate all our prize winners' efforts to scale up and drive impact in the lives of the students they serve. America's children desperately need innovative solutions to overcome the learning loss and falling test scores observed over the past several years."

Since 2021, the Yass Prize has identified more than 6,000 education innovators who are delivering for students in unique ways, in different places and for all kinds of kids for whom their assigned school district school was either closed, not working for them or both. 

The Yass Prize will continue to award and amplify the folks who will bring American education back from the brink and toward a new era in education of innovation, personalization and freedom.

Founded by brothers Anthony and Fred Brock, Valiant Cross Academy follows a faith-based approach to student instruction while also focusing on workplace learning through a dual-enrollment partnership between three local universities.

"This is so amazing, I'm so excited," Anthony Brock, co-founder and executive director, Valiant Cross Academy, said. "I want to give this opportunity to every boy of color in America. I'm going to go back and work even harder. Thank you Janine and Jeff Yass, Jeanne Allen, and the Yass Prize team!"

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