The Association for Middle Level Education has joined with the National Association of Secondary School Principals, The National Forum to Accelerate Middle-Grades Reform, and the National Association of Elementary Principals to declare March the official month to focus on students ages 10 to 15 and celebrate middle level education.
The key messages for the celebration are
- The importance of parents being knowledgeable about young adolescents and being actively involved in their lives;
- The understanding that healthy bodies plus healthy minds equal healthy young adolescents;
- The realization that the education young adolescents experience during this formative period of life will, in large measure, determine the future for all citizens; and
- The knowledge that every young adolescent should have the opportunity to pursue his or her dreams and aspirations, and post-secondary education should be a possibility for all.
Planning Your Celebration
The sky's the limit! The way you plan your celebration is only limited by your imagination. Take a look at the ideas and free samples throughout this section. After your next celebration, send us a paragraph, photos, or an article about your school and community activities and we'll post it on our website. Middle Level Education Month is a celebration that should be experienced by all schools and communities around the world!
Ideas for Your Celebration
- Get the word out. Develop a few message points about your school that you want to share. Put them on business cards for the staff, on your fax cover sheet, in parent newsletters, and on your website, Facebook page, etc.
- Develop a brochure. Call it "50 Magnificent Things about Our Middle School" and distribute it at registration, open house, conferences, and other events. Give copies to your district office and local realtors to pass on to those considering moving into your area.
- Connect with local realtors. Host a breakfast or lunch, and then give them a tour of your school and share programs that make you proud.
- Engage your superintendent. Keep your superintendent and board informed of effective middle grades practices. Pass along articles or websites you think would interest them. Invite them to attend a middle grades conference with you. Offer to share results of a successful program at a school board meeting—and bring students to help with the report! Send board members copies of your school newsletter.
- Let students help. Invite a student to join you at a civic club meeting. Help civic organizations feature students at their meetings. Encourage student performance groups to reach out to community organizations for meeting programs.
- Build a relationship with your local media. Find out who is in charge of education news and ask them how you can help keep them informed of happenings at your school.
- Stay in touch. Contact your state and federal representatives. Invite them to visit your school to speak with classes during the off session or to shadow you, a teacher, or a student. Offer to be a resource on educational issues and keep them informed of pending legislation that will impact middle level education.
- Give your message a personal touch. Facts and figures can be impressive, but a story about how those facts impact the students in your school will make a more lasting impression. Write articles in blogs or online publications, write an op-ed article for a newspaper, and write letters or emails to state and federal representatives.
- Don't be modest! If we want the general public to understand what quality middle level education is all about, then we need to draw attention to the many magnificent things that are happening in countless middle grades schools across the country.
Middle Level Education Month Celebration and Information Resources
We strongly encourage you to use the resources below throughout the year. After all, our aim is to continually develop and maintain supportive public attitudes toward middle level education during every month of the year. Those concerned with the education of young adolescents should celebrate and advocate for middle level education all year long.
Articles for Parents and Groups in Your Community
For general questions about Middle Level Education Month:
1-800-528-6672 or firstname.lastname@example.org
If you are interested in joining Middle Level Education Month as a partner organization:
Dru Tomlin, Director of Middle Level Services, email@example.com or 1-800-528-6672
Share your articles, photos, and celebration ideas with us:
Contact April Tibbles at firstname.lastname@example.org