Dear Students and Families at Berlin Middle School,
Welcome to Berlin Middle School! We are excited to begin the year and are looking forward to a great year of student academic and social/emotional growth. In addition to preparing classrooms for the start of the year, our staff has been working hard to launch of "Grading for Learning," our standards-based approach to grading that will replace traditional letter grades. Thank you to the families who were able to attend our parent information sessions this summer. For those who were not able to attend in August, continue to look for information throughout the year on how to better understand this change and how it will positively impact your child's learning.
This summer, I asked staff to identify their favorite reasons they love middle school students. Their responses are reflective of the amazing ways that adolescent brains change and develop during these important years:
* Their energy
* Their openness and creativity
* Their constant growth and change--each day can be different!
* Their sense of humor
* Their growing sense of independence
The teachers and staff at Berlin Middle School are committed to leveraging these fantastic qualities of adolescence in order to help students develop their passions, grow in their academic capacity, and develop social intelligence necessary for a successful life outside of school. We accomplish through a focus on Grading for Learning (a standards-based approach to grading), ensuring a strong universal curriculum for all students, offering a wide range of exploratory courses and activities, and providing additional supports for students who need them.
We know that these goals cannot be accomplished without continuous feedback and involvement from our families. Throughout the year, please watch for opportunities to contribute to the middle school, whether it be through attendance at school events, participation on a task force or workgroup, or providing feedback on surveys. Those who may have additional ideas about ways the school can foster positive relationships with families are encouraged to reach out and share your thoughts.
Finally, Berlin Middle School values student voice and engagement in decision making. Students in their middle school years have a great capacity to harness their above-mentioned qualities in order to impact positive change.
Berlin Middle School Principal