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Middle Grades

Collaboration Leads to Engagement

Sinaloa Middle School, Novato, Calif.

Whole child partner National Forum to Accelerate Middle Grades Reform recently added Sinaloa Middle School to its list of California Schools to Watch. Sinaloa, located in Novato, California, is constantly working on new ways to improve the student experience and close the achievement gap. This is most notable in Academic Performance Index (API) scores for students with disabilities, which have increased by nearly 100 points since 2007. Aside from numerical success, faculty collaboration has yielded a series of strategies and initiatives designed to promote student engagement with the school and learning as a whole.

With Time for Support, High Performance Is Ensured

Scotts Valley Middle School, Scotts Valley, Calif.

National Forum to Accelerate Middle Grades Reform, a whole child partner, has named Scotts Valley Middle School a California School to Watch. As a top-performing school on California’s Academic Performance Index (API), Scotts Valley’s efforts to close the achievement gap are seeing considerable success. The school, located in Scotts Valley, California, is divided into seven academies that help students focus on achieving high standards in English, math, history, and science. With an increasingly diverse student body, Scotts Valley staff members ensure that individual needs are being met through an enrichment period during the school day.
 

An Early Intervention Support System Yields Success

San Lorenzo Valley Middle School, Felton, Calif.

San Lorenzo Valley Middle School—located in Felton, California—has just been named a California School to Watch by whole child partner National Forum to Accelerate Middle Grades Reform. This rural school has made great strides in recent years on California’s Academic Performance Index (API). Much of the school’s success can be attributed to its thorough and effective academic counseling programs, which ensure that every child is supported and can receive help if needed.

A Supportive Community Produces Outstanding Learners

Union Middle School, San Jose, Calif.

Whole child partner National Forum to Accelerate Middle Grades Reform has named Union Middle School as one of its 2013 California Schools to Watch. This suburban school—located in San Jose, California—is most noteworthy for being ranked in the top 10 percent of state middle schools, due in part to its success in collaborative education efforts that provide student support. The commitment to excellence is also reflected in Union’s Academic Performance Index (API) score, which is nearly perfect by California state standards.

Bringing STEM Home to Forge Community Bonds

Vanguard Preparatory School, Apple Valley, Calif.

Recently named a California School to Watch by whole child partner National Forum to Accelerate Middle Grades Reform, Vanguard Preparatory School is facing the achievement gap head on. Located in Apple Valley, a rural town in California, Vanguard’s focus on science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) subjects has made it a standout in the area. Vanguard runs family STEM nights to further strengthen the connection between the classroom setting and the family support network.

Diverse Learning Community Uses Education Innovations to Aid Achievement

Summit Intermediate School, Etiwanda, Calif.

Summit Intermediate School, located in Etiwanda, California, joins the prestigious list of California Schools to Watch after commendation by whole child partner National Forum to Accelerate Middle Grades Reform. Summit pursues unique and innovative educational practices like “X-Time,” an extra support period for students, as part of its mission to provide for its diverse student community. These efforts are clearly paying off, as Summit’s standardized testing score averages have increased considerably in the past five years.

Support Leads to Growth and Success

Thurston Middle School, Laguna Beach, Calif.

Located in Laguna Beach, California, Thurston Middle School was recently named a California School to Watch by whole child partner National Forum to Accelerate Middle Grades Reform. The school has consistently set and achieved growth targets for standardized tests through a supportive environment for every student. Drawing from multiple strategies, such as best first practices and response to intervention, Thurston Middle School has met and exceeded expectations–even its own.

Customizing Programs to Meet Student Needs

Pioneer Middle School, Tustin, Calif.

Tustin, California, is home to Pioneer Middle School, a recently named California School to Watch by whole child partner National Forum to Accelerate Middle Grades Reform. The school has successfully developed and implemented a program known as Pyramid on Interventions, which has received national recognition for its applications in improving student proficiency. Pioneer Middle School has also seen major growth and improvement in student achievement on standardized tests, particularly in the last five years.

With Performance on the Rise, Urban School Seeks to Close the Achievement Gap

Frank J. Zamboni Middle School, Paramount, Calif.

Frank J. Zamboni Middle School—located in Paramount, California—has the distinction of being the only urban school to be designated as a 2013 California School to Watch by whole child partner National Forum to Accelerate Middle Grades Reform. In just five years, the school’s Academic Performance Index (API) scores have risen from a low average to at or above the state target level in nearly every demographic group. Concern for the school’s large disadvantaged population has sparked a renewed focus on overcoming the socioeconomic issues facing many Zamboni students.

Sharing Ideas for Higher Achievement

Sanger Academy Charter School, Sanger, Calif.

As one in a trio of Sanger, California schools to be designated a California School to Watch by whole child partner National Forum to Accelerate Middle Grades Reform, Sanger Academy Charter School proves the efficacy of a commitment to quality education. Collaboration between Sanger Academy and its two sister schools—also designated as California Schools to Watch—can be seen on all levels, from middle school sports tournaments to monthly meetings between the three principals to share ideas and techniques.

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