Why does LSR7 need a fourth middle school?
Building a fourth middle school is part of a district plan to adapt a 6-8th grade middle school model starting in the 2022-23 school year. Currently, sixth grade is part of elementary school.
Why did the district recommend the sixth grade to middle school transition?
The middle school shift is part of an instruction-driven transition to give sixth graders opportunities to engage in more electives and an advanced curriculum tailored to their needs. At middle school, educators can give sixth graders more attention and support during a crucial developmental stage. The transition to middle school will create new learning opportunities for sixth graders and provide more consistency for all middle school students, who will no longer be transitioning in and out of middle school in two years.
In addition, our school district population is projected to grow by 1,500 students in the next 10 years and the sixth grade shift will provide extra capacity at the elementary level. This extra room will allow elementary schools to invest in more enriched programming at the elementary level, particularly in STEM and Specials areas.
Will the middle school transition prompt boundary changes?
Yes. Since we will have four middle schools instead of three, we will have to adjust boundaries at the middle school level before the 2022-23 year. A Middle School Boundary Study Team will be convened in the spring of 2021. Elementary and high school boundaries will remain unimpacted.
Has staffing, curriculum and structure been determined for the new middle school model?
The processes to make these important determinations have begun.
- Whitney Morehead, currently the Summit Lakes Middle School assistant principal was approved as principal of the fourth middle school at the February 2021 Board of Education meeting.
- The district will conduct a Middle School Boundary Study from April - September 2021.
- A Naming and Mascot Committee will also convene during the spring of 2021.
- A process is also being developed to transition sixth grade (and potentially other) teachers from elementary to middle school, and a Middle School Curriculum Team is also being assembled this year.