It's an award that's given the Charlotte Public School District state-wide recognition.
"It has to do with something out of the ordinary to improve teaching and learning," said Superintendent Nancy Hipskind.
Charlotte is one of nine state-wide districts to be recognized as one of Michigan's best by the Michigan Association of School Boards.
"Charlotte's evidence of student achievement really stood out," said Jennifer Rogers of the MASB. "They really made an impact on elementary reading by restructuring their school day and giving more time for instructional time."
Simply put, Charlotte is spending more time teaching kids and it's paid dividends.
"The end result has been that our test scores have improved," Hipskind added.
Better MEAP scores in reading for elementary students. The secret is simple says Hipskind. Teachers now meet in groups rather than independently during prep periods. It saves time and makes teachers more efficient. The meetings consist of shared teaching methods and techniques that provide immediate feedback.
"Teachers can benchmark their successes. The impact on learning is significant."
he award also comes with a $1,500 check and serves as a PR tool to attract more students to the district.
"It's a way for them to tout their programs and hopefully recruit some more students to their schools," Rogers said.
Charlotte's enrollment declined by nearly 200 students this year, but Rogers says this award could change that. Since its inception 14 years ago, recipients have seen more students and more money from the state. Charlotte will be honored for the award in November in Traverse City.