TV talk show host Oprah Winfrey said on Monday she would give a total of $6 million to six educational organizations that help to turn around troubled U.S. schools.
The award is the largest given by Winfrey's Angel Network during her show and came as Winfrey devoted two days of her influential TV program to the issue of public schooling.
The winning organizations, announced on Monday's broadcast, are based in Philadelphia, California, Colorado, Illinois, Louisiana and Texas.
Winfrey's Angle Network charitable organization described them as "ground-breaking leaders in the provision of quality public education."
Winfrey on Monday hosted a panel of education reform advocates including Microsoft founder Bill Gates and Davis Guggenheim, the director of the upcoming documentary film "Waiting for Superman." The film follows the efforts of five children who enter a lottery to win a place in a high-performing school.
According to the President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology, the performance of American students in science and math is consistently in the middle or lower than their international counterparts.