Head of Middle School Dr. Josh Deitch shares a welcome message and provides an overview of his division. Additionally, two of our students talk about the classroom experience, school activities, and the Middle School community.
Middle School Curriculum
The Middle School program provides for continuous academic progress through the development of basic learning skills, application of organized information, pursuit of personal interests, and integration of varied subject material. Often an entire unit is built around a central question, and subsequent lessons become a student-directed quest for answers.
We have identified communication, intellectual processing, character development, and personal growth as key concepts required for students to pursue lives of learning and accomplishment, personal fulfillment, and social responsibility. Teachers, Advisors, and Coaches carefully thread elements of these four areas throughout all lessons over the middle school years.
Movement between and among our programs is quite fluid and is dependent upon the relative areas of strength for each student. Students have opportunities for honors placement in Math, Science, and World Languages. Minors: Computer Science/Digital Applications, Choral and/or Instrumental Music, Visual Art, Drama, Life Skills, and Creative Arts. Athletics is also part of the required program for all MS students. When applicable, we distinguish between the various levels of course offerings in the following ways:
THE COLLEGE PREPARATORY PROGRAM
The College Preparatory Program is the fundamental program in every given discipline. In some subjects, such as English and History, this standard-level offering is the course that all students take at a particular grade level.
THE ACCELERATED PROGRAM
The accelerated designation exists solely in our Math sequence and seeks to differentiate between the college preparatory and honors offerings to provide an appropriate level of mathematics instruction for all MS students.
Middle School Course Offerings
Read more about our academic philosophy and view detailed descriptions of all courses.
Because of the variety of course offerings available, middle school schedules can vary dramatically from student to student.
Advising at King
The Advisory Program is designed to provide students with support and guidance. Every Middle School student has an Advisor to serve as a mentor and advocate. Although the student and Advisor determine the precise nature and extent of their relationship, the following basic guidelines apply:
- Advisors serve as the primary contact point between home and school and may direct students and/or parents to the appropriate person or information source for questions, special interests, and the resolution of concerns.
- Advisors check regularly with each advisee to discuss academic progress and any other matters that involve the student.
- Advisors facilitate performance conferences in which the student, his/her parents, and the Advisor meet to discuss performance progress and set goals.
- Advisors formally review each advisee’s academic performance, progress towards established goals, and citizenship contributions at the end of each marking period. Their comments are included on the end-of- year report cards.
Grade Team Leaders
Each grade is assigned a faculty member who works with the entire class to plan and coordinate activities, programs, and service projects. The primary role of the Grade Team Leader is to encourage the growth and development of each individual class member, to promote teamwork within the class and among the MS grades, and to work with them to develop grade-specific advisory activities and goals.
Student Support Team
The Student Support Team (SST) comprises the Head of the Middle School, the Middle School Counselors, the Director of Teaching and Learning, the Dean of Student Life, and the Middle School Coordinator for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. This group meets regularly to review programs, student progress and wellness, and parent education. The SST also collaborates closely with advisors and Team Leaders to ensure consistent or programmatic implementation through Advisory and Life Skills curriculum.
Dean of Student Life
The Middle School Dean of Student of Life is responsible for contributing to and communicating a focused plan for sustaining student wellness and promoting a positive divisional culture. The Dean also builds strong partnerships with students, families, and faculty, creating a safe, supportive school climate. The Dean oversees the facilitation of course schedules, coordination of advisory activities and themes, and disciplinary matters for each grade.
Director of Teaching and Learning
The Director of Teaching and Learning is the division’s primary resource for learning and teaching. As a certified learning specialist, the Director assists and guides students with certain aspects of their studies; coordinates action plans designed to capitalize on student strengths to aid in their academic improvement; and monitors student progress. The Director also teaches Strategy courses. Additionally, the Director functions as a resource for faculty, parents, and students. The Director assists teachers in developing teaching approaches and creating assessments that meet the individual needs of their students, demanding more of those students who are ready for a challenge, and assisting those in need of guidance. Finally, the Director compiles the Cognitive Profile Summaries and helps faculty by pointing out areas of strength in each student’s profile which lead to individual programmatic changes aimed at developing student strengths.
Middle School Counselors
The Counselors are responsible for programming to support the social/emotional well-being of middle school students and educational programming in the areas of social issues faced by MS students, as well as counseling of individual students as needed. The School Counselors are available as a supportive resource to all students in Grades 6-8. The Counselors offer the opportunity for brief solution-focused sessions regarding issues that affect students’ academic or social health. If longer-term care is deemed necessary, the Counselors will provide an initial assessment and provide a referral to an outside community resource. The Counselor also takes the opportunity to meet with students new to the Middle School to discuss any issues, which may arise during their transition to a new school environment. Although most students come to the Counselor by their own referral, Administrators, Personal Advisors, and/or parents can also refer students when they feel that some level of intervention is necessary.