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Special Report

Middle Grades

Feeling the Squeeze
October 4, 2000
This Education Week special report focuses on middle schools.
  • Curriculum Missed Opportunities
    Armor-clad knights and imposing castles of medieval Europe have become an oasis of opportunity for middle school teachers struggling to capture the attention of students easily distracted by the lives that await them outside the classroom door.
    Kathleen Kennedy Manzo, October 4, 2000
    17 min read
    School & District Management Standing Out
    Education Week searched for successful middle schools that have demonstrated their ability to meet the social and psychological needs of their students as well as provide a rigorous academic regimen.
    October 4, 2000
    1 min read
    Education Losing Ground
    The accompanying chart shows how U.S. students stack up, on average, in mathematics on the Third International Mathematics and Science Study.
    October 4, 2000
    1 min read
    School & District Management The Weak Link
    The middle grades are feeling the squeeze. For the past 30 years educators have labored to create distinctive middle schools.
    Kathleen Kennedy Manzo & Ann Bradley, October 4, 2000
    19 min read
    Curriculum Reading Below Par
    The chart below illustrates the achievement levels of U.S. 8th graders on the 1998 National Assessment of Educational Progress in reading.
    October 4, 2000
    1 min read
    School & District Management Resource Guide
    Resources on middle schools.
    October 4, 2000
    2 min read
    Mathematics Missing the Mark in Math
    The chart shows the achievement levels of U.S. 8th graders on the 1996 National Assessment of Educational Progress in mathematics.
    October 4, 2000
    1 min read
    School & District Management Brain Power
    After decades of conflicting beliefs about the intellectual capacity of young adolescents, scholars see a growing consensus, backed by research, that middle school students' brains are ready for learning.
    Linda Jacobson, October 4, 2000
    6 min read
    School & District Management Adrift at the Top
    When Tom Lau became the principal of Benjamin Franklin Middle School in 1996, he was the fifth educator to head the Long Beach, Calif., school since 1991.
    Karen Diegmueller, October 4, 2000
    7 min read
    Teaching Profession An Incomplete Education
    Maureen Phillips always asks people who want to teach at her rural Michigan school to describe a typical middle-level student.
    Ann Bradley, October 4, 2000
    12 min read
    Assessment Put to the Test
    Every six weeks, a thundering roar goes up from the gym of Freeport Intermediate School, where 580 rowdy middle schoolers let loose with cheers, chants, and songs.
    Ann Bradley, October 4, 2000
    9 min read
    School & District Management Strategies for Success
    What:
    The "plan-do-check" cycle, derived from the Total Quality Management business literature.
    October 4, 2000
    1 min read
    Curriculum Different Ways of Knowing
    What:
    A whole-school-reform initiative originally designed for elementary schools, but now being adapted for middle schools.
    October 4, 2000
    1 min read
    School & District Management Turning Points: Transforming Middle Schools
    What:
    A national design for middle school change, based on recommendations from the influential 1989 report by the Carnegie Council on Adolescent Development.
    October 4, 2000
    1 min read
    School & District Management Schooled in 'Purposeful Fun'
    Higher test scores and national recognition have met with their share of hoopla at Barren County Middle School. But it is outside the glow of the spotlight that schooling gets really exciting, teachers here say, because on any given day, students can demonstrate with clarity and enthusiasm that they are "getting it."
    Kathleen Kennedy Manzo, October 4, 2000
    9 min read
    Student Achievement A Feast of Offerings
    When Mary Cavalier glances up at the cafeteria ceiling, she sees subtle confirmation that her school is on the right track.
    Ann Bradley, October 4, 2000
    9 min read
    School & District Management Talent Development Middle Schools
    What:
    A comprehensive reform model aimed at urban middle schools serving large numbers of poor children.
    October 4, 2000
    1 min read
    School & District Management Finding Their Voices
    Had anyone asked students at Jay Cooke Middle School a few years ago, "Does your voice count?" the definitive answer for most would have been "No!"
    Kathleen Kennedy Manzo, October 4, 2000
    10 min read
    School Climate & Safety Competing Forces
    Tyler Goark, 14, and Megan Skidmore, 13, are typical students at a fairly representative middle school in a middle-class suburb.
    Jessica Portner, October 4, 2000
    12 min read

Made possible by a grant from the Edna McConnell Clark Foundation.