Institutional Excellence Nominees

Hispanic Human Resources Council

1. Hispanic Human Resources Council

Hispanic Human Resources Council (HHRC) is a Hispanic serving nonprofit in Palm Beach County, established in 1977, to educate, strengthen, and empower children and families to elevate out of poverty.

HHRC serves almost 300 children (aged 1 to 5) annually by providing high quality, bilingual education, 3 nutritious meals per day, health screenings, and mental health/behavioral services in our two Child Development Centers (CDC). A strong educational foundation in the areas of cognitive, language, literacy, math, physical and socio-emotional skills prepare children to be lifelong learners. Using two-evidence-based programs, a dual-language curriculum in the classroom and a parental engagement program, we innovatively prepare children for life beyond the preschool years. Our CDCs are Gold Seal schools accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) and rank among the top agencies throughout the country.

Our Family Resource Center is an inclusive program that provides families with resources and support such as emergency education, government assistance programming, immigration, and other social service-related issues that ensures the family’s future success.

The mission of HHRC is to serve low-income, at-risk, and underrepresented populations in the community and preparing children and families for lifelong success.


Center for Connections Education Center

2. Connections Education Center

Connections Education Center is a nonprofit charter school in Palm Beach County that delivers high-quality academic instruction plus early interventions for students with autism and related disabilities who need moderate-to-high support. Applying evidence-based teaching strategies and a personalized combination of therapies, the school serves students in Pre-K through 8th grade and is currently at max capacity with 88 students.

Connections meets the needs of some of the most underrepresented children in our area. More than 80% of Connections’ students live below the poverty line, 80% are of minority race, and 45% come from a single-parent home or live with grandparents.

Student progress is measured through Individual Education Plans (IEPs) and a statewide standardized test called the Florida Standards Alternate Assessment (FSAA), which measures academic mastery. Connections is the only charter school for students with autism in Florida to have achieved the “Commendable” rating on the FSAA!

Connections leverages cutting-edge technology to enhance learning. For nonverbal students, for example, Connections equips them with assistive technology devices to support communication, socialization and learning.

Connections is working to build a world where we all belong, including those with autism, and community partnerships play a key role in that work. Connections partners with the Special Olympics to bring inclusive sports to students as well as with the Lynn University Conservatory of Music to bring adaptive music instruction to students. They also partner with a variety of local businesses to give students community-based learning opportunities while also promoting autism acceptance.


3. Crosspointe Elementary

Crosspointe Elementary offers educational services to students in VPK- 5th grade. We are a Title 1 public school with 93% of our families qualifying for free or reduced lunches. Title I programs are designed to improve academic outcomes for all students by strengthening instruction, promoting a culture of high expectations, engaging and empowering families, ensuring safe and healthy learning conditions, and providing a broad range of student support. Crosspointe’s mission is to strive and provide leadership, support, and resources to students that will allow for the design and implementation of an effective strategy rich environment across all academic areas to ensure college and career readiness.

When people walk on to our campus, they can feel the warmth and the family environment. We offer a very inviting atmosphere for students, parents, volunteers and community members. People often say that our school just “feels” different from other institutions. We are THE HAPPY school!

Crosspointe has been striving to return to pre-pandemic achievement levels. Through identifying struggling students and offering a wide variety of interventions throughout the school day and extending to structured tutorial programs, we have been able to raise the level of student achievement to comparable pre-pandemic levels. Two of our fifth grade students achieved perfect scores on the 5th grade math assessment and our projected science scores show an improvement of 25 percentage points. Students are thriving in areas of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics through monthly STEM challenges, the inclusion of technology within the classroom, and vertical alignment of strategies between math teachers. In one of our 5th grade classrooms, 23 out of 24 students scored a 3 or higher on their FAST test. This is just one example of the impact we are having on our students’ lives.

Crossroads Academy

4. Crossroads Academy

Crossroads Academy also known as the “Opportunity Academy” is an alternative educational school site located in Belle Glade, Florida, where students are encouraged to inhale their future and exhale their past.
Unlike many other alternative school sites Crossroads Academy teachers and staff work tirelessly to ensure that students are given the necessary tools that they will need to assist with preparing then for excellence, graduation, post-secondary education, careers and a bright future.
We serve and educate students in grades 6-12, through our unique comprehensive and personalized instructional practices. We take ownership and great pride when it comes to educating students in the Glades community. Our nurturing school environment not only focus on the educational needs of students, we also create an environment that attends to their emotional and social wellness.
Student success is not optional at Crossroads Academy. Every student finds success in the classroom and through our many clubs and extracurricular activities. All students matter at the “Opportunity Academy”.
We nurture the dreams of our students. We help them to reset, refocus, readjust and restart as many times as they need to, because we want students to never give up on our watch.
At Crossroads Academy we are committed to helping students reach excellence and their highest academic potential.


Historical Society

5. Historical Society of Palm Beach County

The Historical Society of Palm Beach County agrees with scholars that learning history, has extensive benefits, especially for children. Since 2003, the HSPBC has dedicated resources to teaching history and civics to local children, in partnership with the School District of Palm Beach County. The resulting curriculum satisfies Florida State Standards in not only history, but several other subjects. The HSPBC continues to update and provide this knowledge in ways that meet the changing needs of our children. All the resources below are provided free of charge to educators. The information is also available to the public at

Traveling Trunks
The Traveling Educational Trunk Program is a lending library of exciting hands-on history lessons for the classroom! Themed Trunks contain activities, reproductions of artifacts, and teaching aids that can be adapted to all grade levels. Topics include the Ancient People of Florida, Spanish Explorers, Seminoles, the Pioneer Era, Civil War in Florida, the Holocaust, the Gilded Age, Agriculture, and Women’s Suffrage.

Traveling Pop-up Exhibits
These cube-shaped exhibits are loaned to schools, libraries, and other non-commercial use, indoors or outdoors. Pickup and delivery are provided. Topics are appropriate for all ages and currently include Florida’s Ancient People, Florida Explorers, Seminoles, the Pioneer Era, Civil War in Florida, The Storm of ‘28, Shipwreck: Discovering Lost Treasure, and Breaking Barriers: Portraits of Persistence.

History of Florida Tabloid
This publication, updated annually, is a comprehensive learning guide, tracing the rich history of Florida and Palm Beach County. It serves as a tool for educators to enhance teaching and learning.