One of the many programs we offer is called "Character Counts," which recognizes many character traits desired in students and features them on our WCMS News, a bulletin board, and rewards them. This inspires others to strive toward these ideals - I think it is a great program!
I currently teach at Crestwood Middle School and have been on staff for 20 years. I have seen so much growth in that time; we have added new programs incorporating technology and fostering critical thinking, such as our STEM program. Crestwood's Fine Arts Department has much to offer, as well. Our Handbells, Chorus, Band, and Art Department give students the opportunity to express themselves, and participate in many events, often winning awards for their efforts. We have a great sports program where both boys and girls have opportunities to practice their skills and stay fit. Students have many clubs and activities to choose from after school, as well, with an activity bus to transport them home. Our Fashion Team, Step-Team, Cheerleading, and NJHS are just some of what Crestwood has to offer. Our American Sign Language Club gives students an opportunity to understand and empathize with students with disabilities, and having been a member myself, I highly recommend it! Our staff is caring and truly wants the best for our students; my experiences here for the past twenty years have made Crestwood Middle School my "home away from home."
Crestwood has an anti-bullying campaign called, "No Place for Hate," sponsored by the Anti-Defamation League. Students create posters and participate in activities to foster tolerance and unity, such as "Pink Shirt Day." We have awesome counselors who work with individual students and mentor student mediators, who meet with students in groups. We take a proactive approach to bullying to ensure our students feel safe.
Our ESE staff is excellent! We provide opportunities for ALL students to experience success. Even our mainstream teachers have taken classes to teaching Differentiated Instruction, knowing that students learn in different ways. We provide alternative ways to assess students and to allow them to demonstrate mastery using methods that show their individual strengths.
Our administration is compassionate but firm. They give students opportunities to be heard and try to ensure that students feel valued. They are supportive of everyone connected to Crestwood; the students, the staff, the parents, and the community.
Some parents have complained about the amount of homework. I understand it is a big change from elementary school, where homework is not completed for a grade. However, this is the time to teach our children what hard work is. It is a good transition to the demands of high school.
My child has had some great teachers that have taught him academics and how to be part of a community. At this difficult teenage time, it is imperative to have other adults in a child's life that will reinforce and model the lessons we, as parents, have shown him.
This school always gives student the opportunity to tell a teacher or administrator if something has happened. They started a campaign for THINK, which encourages students to ask themselves if something is True, Helpful, Imperative, Necessary and/or Kind. They work on fostering community members not just students.