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Middle school matters: Dundalk Middle School
03/07/2016

In honor of national Middle Level Education Month, this March we are taking a closer look at Baltimore County Public Schools’ wonderful middle schools. Every day during March, one or two more school profiles will be posted. To see all that have been posted, please click here.

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The text here

Principal: Seth Barish (quoted below)
Feeder elementary schools: Dundalk, Logan

School website: http://dundalkms.bcps.org/

Academic achievements

“In terms of Measures of Academic Performance (MAP) growth, since last year, we have achieved a 17 point gain in English language arts and are now at 67%. I attribute this growth to the dedication of our teachers, the quality of our instruction, and the willingness of our students to participate in the afterschool Reading Adventure Club and Academic Coaching Club and the Saturday Academy.”

“In math, our MAP scores went up 8 points since last year. Our target is 60% for this year, and we are currently at 58.3 percent.”

Recent awards and grants

Last year, Dundalk Middle became certified as a Maryland Green School in recognition of its environmental activities.

“In 2013 – 2014, we were the first school in Baltimore County to win the county’s Clean Green initiative. We received a $4,000 grant from The Education Foundation of BCPS and used those funds to beautify the courtyard and buy resources to grow trout in a classroom.”

The school received a $2,000 grant from The Education Foundation this year to help defray the costs of students attending NorthBay Adventure Camp.

“Every year, we win a PBIS (Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports) gold award.”

“Last year, we had a finalist for Baltimore County Teacher of the Year – Kathleen Davis, a math teacher.”

Positive student behavior

“Our suspension rate was 34% five years ago. Now it is down to 12%. A number of factors have contributed to our growth in positive student behavior, including our mentoring program. Teachers recommend students who might benefit from a mentor, and other teachers volunteer to serve as their mentors. Mentors and mentees meet monthly, check-in with each other weekly, and have regular celebrations of participants’ successes.”

The school has a strong character education program. Every month, teachers develop a character ed lesson based on data related to the school’s climate and culture.

Special academic programs offered

Dundalk Middle offers AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination). Enrollment in this college preparatory initiative continues to grow, and last year, the school was recognized as a highly certified AVID site last year.

“Next year, we will offer Project Lead the Way (engineering studies) to promote the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) focus here.”

“In addition, we hold a parent meet and greet in the summer for incoming Grade 6 parents, and I and the staff do a lot of transition work, including having our students visit high schools and us visit elementary schools.”

Popular/unique extracurricular activities

“We have really increased the number of students involved in afterschool activities. We are up 15% this year compared to last year. We have a quiz bowl team, singing club, play production club, forensic (science) club, and intermurals.”

“Participation in our afterschool Reading Adventure Club, Academic Coaching Club, and Saturday Academy is voluntary. We know that student participation in them has facilitated their academic growth.”

 “Our evening special events for parents and families include Math and Reading Night, STREAM Night, and Conflict Resolution night.”

Special school traditions

Mayhem in the Middle,” a volleyball game between teachers at Dundalk and Holabird middle schools has been held for the last five years (but was not held this year).  

“Maryland Science Center Family Science Night at Dundalk Middle School is a popular annual event.”

Bet you didn’t know…

That the building opened in 1946 as the original Dundalk High School.

That “this school is a hidden gem. Everyone who comes to visit leaves very impressed with the teaching and learning that goes on here.”

 

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