As we embark on a new school year, MAPSA is introducing a new project aimed to highlight outstanding charter school professionals across the mitten. The #MiCharterHero project will replace the annual MI Charter Awards program.
MAPSA has always had to fight for the recognition of charter educators year after year in mainstream media and in the halls of the Capitol. For years, we have relied on one specific storytelling project- our annual MI Charter Awards program. Initially, when created the awards program back in 2002 as we had hoped it would connect us with local outlets to increase the overall coverage of charter educators in the mainstream media. A lot has changed over the past 20 years. The traditional media landscape has continued to shrink year after year and we began to notice a decrease in overall engagement with our award finalist content and the mainstream coverage.
So, we're sunsetting the MI Charter Awards program. Not just because of the lack of media attention, but we felt it didn’t include all of the outstanding heroes in our charter schools. We want everyone from the teachers leading innovative instruction, to the administrators leading staff to drive amazing academic achievement, to the front office managers, bus drivers, lunch administrators and other essential staff who power our schools day in, day out to have the opportunity to be recognized within our community.
The #MiCharterHero project aims to recognize one shining star in our Michigan charter community every month. We will be promoting more stories from more of our amazing charters across Michigan. Our goal is to continue shining a light on our people, showcasing our stories and our impact.
Here’s what you need to know about the program:
Eligible "heroes" include any individual that works for or volunteers at a Michigan charter school. This includes charter school teachers, administrators/school leaders, deans/instructional coaches, front office managers, librarians, bus drivers, food administrators, board members, etc.
Nominations are completely anonymous, which means we won't share nominator information with our selected hero. Nominations are always open and collected on a rolling basis. New hero features are launched at the beginning of each month starting in October.
You MUST provide a valid email address for your nominated hero, otherwise we have no ability to contact them if they are selected. We encourage you to be thorough and descriptive in your nomination. You know your hero better than anyone, and are best positioned to advocate for their selection to us. As you answer these questions, you CAN use individual, personal stories, real examples of impact, etc.
Once nominations are submitted the MAPSA team will review all monthly nominations and select one outstanding hero to be featured in the upcoming month. Selected heroes are contacted to participate in an exclusive interview to help prepare their awesome story. Nominators will also be contacted to optionally provide a quote for the story, if they wish to participate.
After a “hero” is selected they will receive a #MiCharterHero profile story, published in the Charter Connect Blog, and shared across our social media platforms and in our Charter Connect Newsletter.
Our first #MiCharterHero will be announced in October! We strongly encourage you to submit a nomination by September 21. Submissions can be made through our MI Charter Heroes page. What are you waiting for? Start nominating all of your amazing Michigan Charter staff today!