Middle-Level Education
April 20, 2010

SED's Essential Elements of Standards-Focused Middle Level Schools and Programs

Source: Research and Educational Services

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Essential Elements of Standards-Focused Middle-Level Schools and Programs

Developed by:

The Middle-Level Education Program
New York State Education Department
in cooperation with
The Statewide Network of Middle-Level Education Liaisons
The New York State Middle School Association

The standards-focused middle level school or program is purposeful. It has two basic goals:

  • The intellectual development and academic achievement of all students,
  • and the personal and social development of each student.

In a standards-focused middle-level school or program these two goals are not in conflict or competition; rather, they are compatible, complementary, mutually supportive, and inextricably linked.

The seven essential elements of standards-focused middle-level school programs are:

  • A philosophy and mission that reflect the intellectual and developmental needs and
    characteristics of young adolescents.
  • An educational program that is comprehensive, challenging, purposeful, integrated, and
  • An organization and structure that support both academic excellence and personal
  • Classroom instruction appropriate to the needs and characteristics of young adolescents
    provided by skilled and knowledgeable teachers.
  • Strong educational leadership and a building administration that encourages, facilitates,
    and sustains involvement, participation, and partnerships.
    A network of academic and personal support available for students.
  • Professional training and staff development that are ongoing, planned, purposeful, and
    collaboratively developed.

(continued in PDF)

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