The state Education Department recently dubbed three schools in the Cheektowaga-Sloan School District as among the "rapidly improving schools" in the state.
The recognition is given out to schools that had scored beneath state standards in the past and now are showing great improvement in meeting the standards.
Superintendent James P. Mazgajewski said all district schools -- except for the primary school, which is not tested on state standards -- have received the honorary distinction by the state for a number of years.
"They like what we are doing, and we got the award," Mazgajewski said. "All of our schools have received recognition. We are pretty consistent, we are getting recognized, and we are moving forward."
Middle School Principal David Peters knows just how hard his staff and administrators have pushed in the last year in order to take the pupils to a higher standard that meets the state's requirements.
"Teachers spend a great deal of time after school and before school [helping pupils]," Peters said. "Because we are a smaller school, we get to know students more. This way we can give more attention, and students don't get lost in the crowd."
Peters said he hopes to reduce the average class size by next year from the current 25 to 27 pupils per class to about 22 to 23, therefore providing even more of the individualized attention Peters believe children need to succeed.