NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Metro Nashville Public Schools have officially launched the redesign of its middle schools.
All Metro Middle Schools will now be transformed into the Middle Preps of Nashville. District officials made the announcement Wednesday morning at the Adventure Science Center.
Officials believe the new name serves as a symbol for how students in the middle grades will be prepared for high school, college and life.
“There's a perception in the community that our middle schools might not be as safe or a quality environment for kids and we wanted to combat that perception,” Chief Academic Officer Jay Steele said.
The district believes students in those grade levels are at one of the most important times of their lives. Middle Preps will now focus on the individual student with personalized experiences and attention.
“They are not yet grown up enough to make all their own decisions, but not young enough to depend entirely on parents and teachers,” Dr. Antoinette Williams, Metro Schools’ Executive Officer for middle schools, said in a statement. “Middle school students are an interesting group and present an interesting challenge. So we are challenged to change our approach to educating them.”
Some of the specific course of actions being taken in Middle Preps include every student having access to extracurricular activities, as well as a focus on the transitions between 4th and 5th grade as well as between 8th and 9th grade.
“With this initiative a good classroom is a busy classroom with lots of talking, lots of movement,” Dr. Ted Murcray, IT Creswell Middle Prep Principal said. “Lots of kids interacting with each other and creating ideas together.”
Every Middle School will also offer at least one class for high school credit.
Additionally, 185 middle school students serve as Middle Prep ambassadors. They will represent their schools at public events as well as participate in parent and community outreach.