It was a cold Monday evening, when over 200 parents and children came through the doors of the Dedham Middle School.
This was an evening to be proud though. You see, there are 351 cities and towns in Massachusetts, with 329 Middle Schools in the State.
After an assessment last school year by the folks at NEASC (New England Association of Schools and Colleges), the Dedham Middle School was 1 of only 9 Middle Schools in the State to be “accredited.”
The accreditation is a measuring stick, to assess a school's focus on teaching and learning, the quality of programs and activities offered, and identifying their strengths and needs.
The goal of an assessment is to improve a school's effectiveness.
As you can see by the numbers, very few schools meet these requirements, and try to improve as they go along. Dedham Middle School came out shining!
After a brief assembly in the auditorium, getting an overview of the classes and curriculum offered at DMS, along with a few words from Department Heads, the crowd was divided in to seven “teams.”
Almost two dozen student council representatives (from grades 6, 7, and 8) volunteered their time, to lead the teams of parents and elementary students on a tour through the school.
DMS Principal Debra Gately and interim Vice Principal Kate Conway were on hand, to answer any questions the parents and children posed.
Principal Gately told us that she is “extremely proud of her students, her staff, her school, and of what we do here in Dedham…” Standing by the front door, parent after parent leaned down toward their young ones and asked: “so what did you think…?” And child after child replied: “I can't wait to come here…”