Founder of High Tech High wins WISE Prize for Education

The 2019 prize has been awarded to Larry Rosenstock for his innovative learning model, combining technical and academic education

Larry Rosenstock, founder of High Tech High (HTH) in the US has been awarded the 2019 WISE Prize for Education.

Rosenstock is the CEO and founding principal of the network of American public charter schools in San Diego, California, and has been recognised for his learning model to help students from all socioeconomic backgrounds to succeed.

He pioneered the concept of project-based education, and his model reimagines the role of teachers as ‘designers’ who adapt their curriculums and blend different subjects depending of each student’s specific needs.

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The prize was presented by Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, chairperson of the Qatar Foundation, at the opening plenary of the 2019 WISE Global Summit in Doha, Qatar.

On receiving the award, Rosenstock said: “I am tremendously honoured to receive this prize from such a distinguished jury. I hope the prize will allow us to share the work of High Tech High students and teachers even more widely.

“To me the prize confirms two of my strongest beliefs: that the work of hands and minds can and must be integrated in our schools. And that all young people are capable of doing work that matters, when we give them the opportunity.”

High Tech High combines academic and technical learning, and attempts to break down the obstacles to accessing quality education. Founded in 2000, HTH is now an integrated network of 16 charter schools, teaching approximately 5,780 students across four campuses. The schools have helped prepare thousands of students of varying backgrounds for higher education, citizenship, and work. Ninety-eight percent of HTH students have been accepted to university, compared to a nationwide average of 69%.

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Focusing on integrating students who have been historically divided, often based on class and race, Rosenstock has applied his legal training and experience of his extensive career in education to present his students with equal academic opportunities. He has also sought to improve the status of vocational education and training (VET), including co-writing legislation that enhanced VET funding and required greater integration with academics.

More information about High Tech High is available at and details of the WISE Prize for Education are available at

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