They were recognized Thursday at the Brian Piccolo Academy.
One hundred twenty-eight of them are elementary principals and six are principals at high schools.
The cash awards ranged from $5,000 to $20,000.
They were judged on factors including growth in test scores and improvement in graduation rate.
One of them says she thinks most of the principals will use the money to reward the teams in their schools.
"You won, you did this because of your team and so I think all principals will acknowledge the collaboration and the team approach," said principal Lorie Campbell.
The cash awards of more than $1 million were provided by private donors.