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Middle School Frequently Asked Questions - FAQ

General | School Climate | Curriculum | Sports & Extra-curricular

GENERAL

WHY ARE WE MOVING TO A MIDDLE SCHOOL MODEL?

  • In 2012, Fremont Unified began developing a Long Range Facilities plan in response to FUSD’s overwhelming facilities needs and population growth.  

  • In 2014, the school board approved a middle school model to ease overcrowding and overloading at our elementary schools

WHEN WILL EACH OF THE JUNIOR HIGHS REOPEN AS MIDDLE SCHOOLS?

The anticipated schedule for the below schools to transition from grades 7-8 to 6-8 is:

  • Walters 2019-20

  • Horner 2020-21

  • Thornton 2021-22

  • Centerville & Hopkins 2022-23

WHY WON'T THE SCHOOLS ALL OPEN AT THE SAME TIME?

  • Funding for the middle school conversions is through Measure E, the $650 million school facilities bond passed by Fremont voters in 2014. 

  • The rollout of the middle school conversions is aligned with the issuance of Measure E Bonds, which take place approximately every two years.

WHAT IS THE SCOPE OF WORK FOR THE MIDDLE SCHOOL CONVERSION PROJECTS?

  • The FUSD Long Range Facilities Plan (LRFP), calls for a mix of modernization and new construction at each of the five sites, with projects selected based on 1) Health and Safety; 2) Increasing Capacity; and 3) Upgrading Technology Infrastructure. 

  • The Scope of Work varies from site to site, based on each school's own unique needs.

SCHOOL CLIMATE & STUDENT CONNECTEDNESS

WHAT SOCIAL AND EMOTIONAL SUPPORT IS AVAILABLE FOR STUDENTS?

  • WEB (Where Everyone Belongs) is a middle school orientation and transition program that welcomes 6th graders and makes them feel comfortable throughout the first year of their middle school experience 

  • School Counselor are available for any number of social, emotional and academic needs of students and parents

CURRICULUM AND INSTRUCTION

WHAT ARE THE CURRICULAR BENEFITS OF THE MIDDLE SCHOOL MODEL?

  • Common Core State Standards for math and English Language Arts are organized: K-5, 6-8, 9-12

    • K-5 standards reflect the fact that most or all of the instruction comes from one teacher

    • 6-12 standards are designed to be covered in multiple content areas 

  • Potential for increased parental involvement because students will be at the middle school for three years instead of two

HOW IS SIXTH-GRADE AT THE MIDDLE SCHOOL DIFFERENT FROM AN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL?

  • Sixth-grade students at a middle school use the “Core Model” for scheduling. Students have the same teacher for two subjects:

    • English Language Arts and History Block (taught by one teacher)

    • Math and Science Block (taught by one teacher)

    • Physical Education (taught by one teacher)

    • Sixth-grade Wheel (taught by one teacher)

HOW IS SIXTH-GRADE AT THE MIDDLE SCHOOL THE SAME AS AN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL?

  • Sixth-grade middle school students receive the same adopted curriculum in math, science, history, and English as sixth grade students at an elementary school

WHAT IS THE SIXTH-GRADE WHEEL?

  • Most students in sixth-grade will cycle through four courses; Academic Strategies, Digital Citizenship, Healthy Lifestyles, and Innovation  (not necessarily in that order)  

  • Each course will last for one quarter (nine weeks)

WHAT IS ACADEMIC STRATEGIES?

  • This course provides skills to support success in middle and high school including: focused note-taking, binder organization, time management, critical reading and writing to learn skills, goal-setting and self- monitoring

WHAT IS DIGITAL CITIZENSHIP?

  • Students develop an understanding about: media balance and the impact of media in life, privacy and security, digital footprint, cyberbullying, news and media literacy

WHAT IS HEALTHY LIFESTYLES?

  • This course integrates social and emotional learning, character development, drug and bullying prevention, and service-learning for positive youth development.  Students also learn about nutrition, fitness, stress management, mental and emotional health

WHAT IS INNOVATIONS?

  • Students will discover their particular abilities, talents, and interests in hands-on projects and activities as they develop design thinking and crative mindsets

HOW WILL PHYSICAL EDUCATION BE HANDLED? 

  • Students will need to change into appropriate clothes for daily PE instruction

  • The Director of Secondary Education and middle school principals will work together to ensure that 6th grade students have their own area in the locker room that will be supervised by a teacher. 

SPORTS, STUDY TRIPS, & EXTRA-CURRICULAR ACTIVITIES

WHAT ACTIVITIES CAN STUDENTS PARTICIPATE IN?

  • All sixth grade students will have access to student clubs, athletic programs, and Associated Student Body Activities (ASB) such as dances, lunchtime activities, etc.

WHAT WILL HAPPEN TO 6TH GRADE SCIENCE CAMP?

  • Science camp is currently optional and will remain so; schools/teachers are not currently required to attend; those who want to go will continue to follow the current process by filling out a request for a Study Trip