Valiant Cross Academy wins prestigious Yass Prize, $1M award

Montgomery’s Christian, all-boys school Valiant Cross Academy won a massive award in education on Wednesday evening: The 2023 Yass Prize. The prestigious honor has been called “the Pulitzer of Education Innovation,” and in addition to the title, Valiant Cross will also receive $1 million.

“This is so amazing, I’m so excited,” executive director Anthony Brock said in his acceptance speech. “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!”

The Yasses are a billionaire couple who live in Pennsylvania, and for the last two decades, they have spend a considerable amount of time and effort advocating for improvements in the American education system. They started The Yass Prize tin 2021 as a means to support the best organizations in the country, those that are working “to break the cycle of ineffective education failing students across the country.”

Anthony Brock, left, and Fred Brock, right, founders of Valiant Cross Academy in Montgomery, Ala., on Wednesday May 12, 2021.

Hundreds of organizations vie for first place each year, and winners are selected based on how closely they meet four of the Yass’s core standard of “sustainable, transformational, outstanding and permissionless education.”

Previous winners were Arizona Autism Charter Schools and Discovery Center Springfield, both of which filled gaps in local education offerings. Valiant Cross fits in well with this group as it provides a faith-based, disciplined environment for young men in Montgomery to learn and grow.

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