February 5, 2014
Mount Airy Middle School has been named as one of two middle schools in North Carolina on the “Schools to Watch” list. School officials report this award designates MAMS as one of the best middle schools in the country.
According to Superintendent Dr. Gregory Little, Schools to Watch is an initiative launched by the National Forum to Accelerate Middle Grades Reform in 1999. The forum identifies schools across the country which it feels are well on their way to meeting the criteria for high performance academically.
A release from the system indicates Forum members typically believe the four things true of high performing middle grade schools are schools challenging all students to use their minds well, are sensitive to the unique developmental challenges of early adolescence, are democratic and fair, providing every student with high quality teachers, resources and support and share a vision of “promoting a learning community of practice.”
“I am extremely proud of our students and staff for this tremendous honor. I am constantly telling our students that they amaze me more and more every day,” said Principal Susan Bunch. “They are polite, kind and dedicated to succeed in every way. Our hard working, caring and innovative faculty is the foundation of our success. The pride we take in the achievement of every student is evident. This is an outstanding accomplishment for our students, staff and community.”
Little explained the award promotes academic excellence, social equity and overall quality of education and said he feels MAMS has had multiple years of quality instruction and innovative programming which led to the award. He commended the staff for the high level of instruction and care they have exhibited.
A release from the district recognized Mount Airy City Schools students for being “well rounded and excelling in many ways.” Little said the district was excited that a national organization would acknowledge the school’s accomplishments.
“The support of our community and parents along with the efforts of our students and staff have made this national recognition possible,” said Little. “The award confirms that Mount Airy City Schools is a national leader in education and the district will continue to grow, setting even higher expectations for students. We are proud of the world class education that we provide. This award is a testament to the hard work and effort of our amazing teachers. Their dedication and commitment to our students and community is inspiring.”
In late June, MAMS will be honored at the Tenth Annual Schools to Watch conference in Washington, D.C. MAMS teachers will join educators from middle grades across the country which have been nationally recognized as Schools to Watch. Staff members participate in the conference by sharing their successes, strategies and information about student achievement and positive student development.
The public is invited to join students and staff for a celebration of the achievement on Feb. 13 at 1:30 p.m. in the school gymnasium.