The high staff turnover and dropping enrollment numbers (735 in 2011-12 to 293 this school year and lower for the fall) speak to the problems that plague Morey MS. Although the only Highly Gifted & Talented middle school magnet program for DPS is at Morey, the 6th grade HGT class this year is only a third of the 8th grade numbers, about 35 students, all in one class. We transferred our 6th grader out before the end of the school year (and would have done the same with our 8th grader but she was insistent on staying through the end of the year) due to discipline issues as a whole and the lack of strong academics. After a year and a half at Morey we were disappointed in the lack of clear direction and the leadership at the school. Changes are put in place by the administration without community discussion and promises and assurances are made by staff and the principal that are never followed through on, some of which are required by law (they have an investigation by the Office of Civil Rights pending). Communication is poor and we rarely saw any of our children's school work, yet we were expected to support them. Most teachers do not respond to e-mails and we spent too much time tracking them down to get information. Although they have a large number of staff they don't seem to be able to get this school back on track. I would not recommend this school with it's current direction and leadership to anyone.
We have been very pleased with Morey even though there have been some ups and downs with all the transition the past few years. Our daughter is finishing up her 8th grade year in the HGT program. Our son will be there next year in the HGT program in 6th grade. My daughter found her niche and had a good group of friends. Bullying has not been an issue overall. There are lots of great opportunities at Morey given the urban setting. Last year our daughter was involved in the Anthropology Club. They got to work weekly at the Colorado History Museum creating and developing their very own Morey exhibit complete with a ceremony when it was complete. The exploratory arts offer incredible chances to learn new skills. Definitely have your kids enroll in band and/or orchestra even if they have never picked up an instrument. Art is another amazing option. There have definitely been lots of transitions, but we are excited and hopeful with Mr. Tonk now serving as principal. He is definitely committed to growing the school in many ways and serving all the students that attend. You could tell the teachers were excited about Mr. Tonk when we attended back to school night this past fall.
My son has attended Morey Middle School for three years now and we have been very pleased with the experience. While there have been a number of changes in school leadership over the years that have been challenging, the current principal has done an excellent job of getting things back on track. Despite being the biracial son of two dads he has NEVER experienced bullying during his 2 1/2 years at Morey. We've heard reports of it, but have never experienced it first hand. If there were issues, I know they have been addressed. Morey offers our son a wide variety of exploratory programs that he has very much enjoyed such as band, Spanish, and woodshop. He has also excelled in all the fundamental courses as well. If you want to send your kid to a school where they will be sheltered from the real world and only be exposed to a narrow demographic and cultural environment, send them to a private or charter school. However, if you want your kid to be prepared for the real world and understand that there are many cultures and socio-economic that we must learn to co-exist with, then please consider Morey. You won't regret it!
I have a 6th grader and an 8th grader at Morey. The band program is outstanding. Academically my kids have had lots of opportunity to think creatively. I like the friends they've made here. My son will be going to East next year and I don't think any other school would have prepared him as well. The new principal is terrific. He has vision and is serious about discipline.
My son started in 6th grade this year @ Morey, and has loved it from the start. His teachers are excellent and very responsive to any concerns I've had. The principal, Noah Tonk, is the most committed & passionate principal I have ever seen. We are proud to support our neighborhood school.
My son started 6th grade at Morey this fall in the HGT program. I was a little nervous, because I'd heard some mixed reviews, and we were committing to send him to a school that's a 20 minute drive from our house. After visiting Morey, though, he was insistent that this was the school for him, so we agreed. We are so happy with his experience so far. His teachers are kind, supportive and fun. He feels more challenged in his academics than he had all through elementary school. He ended up in Orchestra through a scheduling fluke, and by the end of the second day had decided he loved it, and wanted to be a Bass player. I cannot say enough good things about the music teacher at Morey! The new principal this year is honest, direct and dedicated. He is upfront about the challenges that Morey is facing and never tries to sugar coat them - but he also is relentless in problem solving and truly values the input of parents, and from what I've seen, his staff. Middle school is a tumultuous time in any kids life, but I feel like my child is safe, academically challenged, and being exposed to a diverse range of people. I am so glad we let him go with his gut and choose Morey!