NIET Founders Award

Dallas, Texas (February 29, 2024) - The National Institute for Excellence in Teaching (NIET) announced today that North DeSoto High School in DeSoto Parish Schools, Louisiana, is the recipient of the 2024 NIET Founder's Award and its $50,000 grand prize. NIET Founder and Chairman Lowell Milken, joined by Chief Executive Officer Dr. Joshua Barnett, surprised the school during the 2024 NIET National Conference in Dallas, Texas.

Created by Lowell Milken in 2008, the Founder’s Award honors one school in the United States each year for exceptional implementation of NIET’s principles: to build educator excellence and advance student success. North DeSoto High School was just one of five schools across the country selected as finalists for the $50,000 grand prize. Founder’s Award recipients are selected based on several factors, including their efforts to make instructional excellence the cornerstone of school improvement, plans for regular professional learning focused on the real-time needs of teachers and students, creating a culture of collaboration and reflection, and leveraging teacher leaders to drive student growth.

“North DeSoto High School demonstrates how powerful leadership and support for teachers can lead to sustained achievement growth for students,” said NIET Founder Lowell Milken. “We commend Principal Tammie Phillips and her staff for putting in place the structure for educators and students to thrive, and Superintendent Clay Corley and his team for making educator effectiveness a key focus throughout the district. Their work to deepen these principles over time has prepared scores of students to advance successfully in their next stages of learning and life.”

Read more here: Louisiana’s North DeSoto High School Surprised with National Institute for Excellence in Teaching’s Founder’s Award and $50,000 Grand Prize