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GreatSchools Rating

Mccombs Middle School

Public | 6-8 | 591 students

 

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Last modified
Community Rating

3 stars

Community Rating by Year
2014:
Based on 5 ratings
2013:
No new ratings
2012:
Based on 1 rating
2011:
No new ratings

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15 reviews of this school


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Posted July 3, 2014

I have to admit that I was a bit apprehensive about sending my child to McCombs last year (middle school can be scary for parents), however it turned out to be a wonderful experience for my child. The building is completely remodeled with the open classroom setting a thing of the past. The teachers are very approachable and go the extra mile to help students succeed. There are many activities and opportunities for students to be involved in. My student had a great year, loved his teachers, improved in all academic areas, and generally enjoyed going to school. McCombs has proven to me that they are moving forward with high goals and expectations and I am very happy my child is along for the ride.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted July 1, 2014

I have had the benefit of working in this school for the past 11 years, and I have seen a huge number of positive changes. We have been through a beautiful remodel which updated the building in much needed ways. The amount of technology in our building has at least tripled in the last few years, and our test scores are improving as well. Staff and students at McCombs want the school to be number 1 in Des Moines, and we reach this goal all the time in so many different ways- just check out our #1 display case in the front hallway! The teachers at this school work hard every day to ensure that students feel safe, engaged, and free to express themselves. Teachers give up planning time to arrange interventions for struggling students to make sure that every student gets what they need academically. The amount of after school and extracurricular opportunities for students has increased every year. This is a school that cares about academics, behavior, and creating future citizens who will be successful in the world outside of middle school.
—Submitted by a teacher


Posted July 1, 2014

I have been associated with McCombs Middle for the past two years . I think they are so underrated. The staff and teachers there are so friendly and accommodating. The students are respectful and worked very hard in their academic areas, sports and community involvement. McCombs was featured so many times for the last school year for great achievements in many areas. For a school on the south side , thumbs up to McCombs for striving for excellence everyday.
—Submitted by a teacher


Posted June 30, 2014

McCombs has been a breath of fresh air. I have worked in other buildings in Des Moines and by far McCombs has had the best behavior I have seen in a long time. I attribute that to a strong engaged staff that are completely working as a team. The kids are there to learn and the teachers are able to teach with very few distractions due to behavior. I am so pleased to have landed at McCombs after working in the same building for 12 years. I saw kids encouraging one another, teachers collaborating, and kids and staff enjoying themselves while taking pride in their school.
—Submitted by a teacher


Posted April 26, 2014

I have been at this school for the last few years and love working here. The staff is fantastic and the administration is supportive. The school offers a ton of programs (Science, Jazz, Drama, Reading, Sports, a trip to DC and more) and staff often puts in extra time, even at the last minute (without pay) to make sure everyone has what they need to succeed. I have heard stories about where this school was four or five years ago and I can say, without a doubt, that we have made a complete turn around for the better. In my opinion McCombs is by far the number one school on the South Side of Des Moines. I have had many conversations with staff and the attitude by majority is a positive one. Being at McCombs is a great place to be and I think you will see very little turn over for years to come.
—Submitted by a teacher


Posted February 24, 2012

I have not problems with the teachers at McCombs, what I am having an issue with is the fact that I am paying taxes for 1 assistant to follow 1 student around school to ensure she does not bully other students. It is disappointing that McCombs does not take futher action against bullies when they are reported by several students. It is time to remove my child and open enroll elsewhere. Thank you Des Moines Public Schools.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted July 1, 2010

this school is not good at all!! they are laying off drama, music, and computers which were the best classes in my opinion. The school desperatly needs money, the ceiling walls look like they were made out of card board and the whole school cares way to much about race. I'll recomend a differnt school. They're a lot of gands and vilonce there too, fights everyday.


Posted August 1, 2009

as a student at McCombs, I think it really needs to step up in letting kids have fun in a good way. plus, the classrooms are awful. their small and they have either fake walls or cabinets for walls.
—Submitted by a student


Posted June 1, 2009

McCombs used to be an awesome school Fond memories, fair practices and in control. In the last few (probably 2-3 years) the school has drastically changed. The staff turnover is high, and their patience is low. If you can't tolerate teenagers, don't work in a middle school. This school has become more of a juvenile detention center instead of a learning environment. I am only hoping that my last son does not leave this school less educated than when he entered 3 years ago.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted January 10, 2009

It's an ok school. but the kids are annoying cause they don't care where they end up. And kids trying to learn have a hard time learning cause there is so many interuptions. Teachers do work hard though to help.
—Submitted by a student


Posted December 20, 2008

I had three kids go through this school in the past six years. The school is horrible. It is hard to tell from these reviews because you have to filter through biased information, but ask for statistics on the disiplinary problems in the school. The kids are allowed to behave horribly with little recourse. The teachers are average at best and class control is not their strength. The principal is a very nice pushover who would rather give excuses than fix problems.
—Submitted by a parent


Posted December 6, 2008

McCombs is a great school. I think the school has some issues, but what school doesn't. If it isn't one thing it's another. Teachers are dedicated to helping all students be successful.
—Submitted by a teacher


Posted January 23, 2006

I a teacher at this school and the school is worse than I could have ever imagined a school in Des Moines, Iowa could possibly be. The problems start at the top. For the sake of your children, steer clear unless some serious changes take place.
—Submitted by a teacher


Posted September 13, 2005

McCombs is a wonderful school! The teachers there are so understanding and can help with anything you need.
—Submitted by a student


Posted April 4, 2005

McCombs is the worst school ever(not including texas schools.
—Submitted by a teacher


Community ratings and reviews do not represent the views of GreatSchools nor does GreatSchools check their accuracy or verify the reviewers' identities. Use your discretion when evaluating these reviews.

About these ratings

The Community Rating is the school’s average rating from its community members (e.g., parents, students, and school staff). The highest possible rating is five stars; the lowest is one star.

The test results by subgroup show how the designated group of students is performing in comparison to the general population.
Math

The state average for Math was 72% in 2013.

181 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
68%

2012

 
 
63%
Reading

The state average for Reading was 65% in 2013.

181 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
52%

2012

 
 
51%
Scale: % proficient or advanced

About the tests


In 2012-2013 Iowa used the Iowa Assessments to test students in grades 3 through 8 and 11 in reading and math. The scores reflect the performance of students enrolled for the full academic year. The Iowa Assessments are standards-based tests, which measure specific skills defined for each grade by the state of Iowa. The goal is for all students to score at or above proficient on the tests.

Source: Iowa Department of Education

Math

The state average for Math was 77% in 2013.

177 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
69%

2012

 
 
60%
Reading

The state average for Reading was 68% in 2013.

176 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
52%

2012

 
 
49%
Scale: % proficient or advanced

About the tests


In 2012-2013 Iowa used the Iowa Assessments to test students in grades 3 through 8 and 11 in reading and math. The scores reflect the performance of students enrolled for the full academic year. The Iowa Assessments are standards-based tests, which measure specific skills defined for each grade by the state of Iowa. The goal is for all students to score at or above proficient on the tests.

Source: Iowa Department of Education

Math

The state average for Math was 73% in 2013.

146 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
58%

2012

 
 
66%
Reading

The state average for Reading was 65% in 2013.

145 students were tested at this school in 2013.

2013

 
 
43%

2012

 
 
46%
Scale: % proficient or advanced

About the tests


In 2012-2013 Iowa used the Iowa Assessments to test students in grades 3 through 8 and 11 in reading and math. The scores reflect the performance of students enrolled for the full academic year. The Iowa Assessments are standards-based tests, which measure specific skills defined for each grade by the state of Iowa. The goal is for all students to score at or above proficient on the tests.

Source: Iowa Department of Education

Math

All Students68%
African American70%
Asiann/a
Hispanic64%
Multiracialn/a
Native Americann/a
White69%
Economically disadvantaged62%
Students with disabilities35%
English language learners35%

Reading

All Students52%
African American60%
Asiann/a
Hispanic36%
Multiracialn/a
Native Americann/a
White59%
Economically disadvantaged46%
Students with disabilities17%
English language learners10%
Scale: % proficient or advanced

About the tests


In 2012-2013 Iowa used the Iowa Assessments to test students in grades 3 through 8 and 11 in reading and math. The scores reflect the performance of students enrolled for the full academic year. The Iowa Assessments are standards-based tests, which measure specific skills defined for each grade by the state of Iowa. The goal is for all students to score at or above proficient on the tests.

The different student groups are identified by the Iowa Department of Education. If there are fewer than 10 students in a particular group in a school, the state doesn't report data for that group.

Source: Iowa Department of Education

Math

All Students69%
African American47%
Asiann/a
Hispanic69%
Multiracialn/a
Native Americann/a
White71%
Economically disadvantaged64%
Students with disabilities21%
English language learners57%

Reading

All Students52%
African American41%
Asiann/a
Hispanic39%
Multiracialn/a
Native Americann/a
White59%
Economically disadvantaged48%
Students with disabilities14%
English language learners19%
Scale: % proficient or advanced

About the tests


In 2012-2013 Iowa used the Iowa Assessments to test students in grades 3 through 8 and 11 in reading and math. The scores reflect the performance of students enrolled for the full academic year. The Iowa Assessments are standards-based tests, which measure specific skills defined for each grade by the state of Iowa. The goal is for all students to score at or above proficient on the tests.

The different student groups are identified by the Iowa Department of Education. If there are fewer than 10 students in a particular group in a school, the state doesn't report data for that group.

Source: Iowa Department of Education

Math

All Students58%
African American38%
Asiann/a
Hispanic48%
Multiracial60%
Native Americann/a
White64%
Economically disadvantaged50%
Students with disabilities7%
English language learnersn/a

Reading

All Students43%
African American31%
Asiann/a
Hispanic36%
Multiracial47%
Native Americann/a
White48%
Economically disadvantaged33%
Students with disabilities4%
English language learnersn/a
Scale: % proficient or advanced

About the tests


In 2012-2013 Iowa used the Iowa Assessments to test students in grades 3 through 8 and 11 in reading and math. The scores reflect the performance of students enrolled for the full academic year. The Iowa Assessments are standards-based tests, which measure specific skills defined for each grade by the state of Iowa. The goal is for all students to score at or above proficient on the tests.

The different student groups are identified by the Iowa Department of Education. If there are fewer than 10 students in a particular group in a school, the state doesn't report data for that group.

Source: Iowa Department of Education

Breaking down the GreatSchools Rating

GreatSchools Ratings for this school are based on 2012-2013 test results. Use the breakdown ratings below to compare types of students at this school. Learn more »


Student ethnicity

Ethnicity This school State average
White 54% 81%
Hispanic 25% 9%
Black 10% 5%
Two or more races 6% 3%
Asian or Asian/Pacific Islander 4% 2%
American Indian/Alaska Native 1% 0%
Hawaiian Native/Pacific Islander 0% 0%
Source: NCES, 2011-2012

Student subgroups

  This school District averageState average
Students eligible for free or reduced-price lunch program 72%N/A39%
Source: NCES, 2011-2012

Teacher resources

Special staff resources available to students School social worker/counselors(s)
Art teacher(s)
Assistant principal(s)
Computer specialist(s)
Cooking/Nutrition teacher(s)
ELL/ESL Coordinator
Gifted specialist(s)
Librarian/media specialist(s)
Math specialist(s)
Music teacher(s)
Nurse(s)
PE instructor(s)
Robotics/Technology specialist(s)
School psychologist
Special education coordinator
Teacher aid/assistant teacher
Read more about programs at this school
Source: Provided by school community.

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Special education / special needs

Staff resources available to students
  • Special education coordinator

Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math (STEM)

Staff resources available to students
  • Computer specialist(s)
  • Math specialist(s)
  • Robotics/Technology specialist(s)
School facilities
  • Computer lab
  • Science lab

Arts & music

Staff resources available to students
  • Art teacher(s)
  • Music teacher(s)
School facilities
  • Art room
  • Music room
  • Performance stage
Music
  • Band
  • Choir / Chorus
  • Instrumental music lessons
  • Jazz band
  • Orchestra
  • Vocal lessons / coaching
Performing and written arts
  • Drama

Language learning

Foreign languages taught
  • Spanish
Staff resources available to students
  • ELL/ESL Coordinator

Health & athletics

Staff resources available to students
  • Cooking/Nutrition teacher(s)
  • Nurse(s)
  • PE instructor(s)
  • School psychologist
School facilities
  • Access to sports fields
  • Gym
  • Kitchen

Gifted & talented

Staff resources available to students
  • Gifted specialist(s)
Note: Data provided by community members,
needs to be verified by school leaders.

Let your school shine!

School leaders: Help your school shine on GreatSchools
by verifying community responses, adding program highlights
and more! Get started »

School basics

Before school or after school care / program onsite
  • After school

Programs

Foreign languages taught
  • Spanish

Resources

Staff resources available to students
  • Art teacher(s)
  • Assistant principal(s)
  • Computer specialist(s)
  • Cooking/Nutrition teacher(s)
  • ELL/ESL Coordinator
  • Gifted specialist(s)
  • Librarian/media specialist(s)
  • Math specialist(s)
  • Music teacher(s)
  • Nurse(s)
  • PE instructor(s)
  • Robotics/Technology specialist(s)
  • School psychologist
  • School social worker/counselors(s)
  • Special education coordinator
  • Teacher aid/assistant teacher
Transportation options
  • Accessible via public transportation
  • Buses/vans for students only
  • Passes/tokens for public transportation
  • Transportation provided for special education students only
School facilities
  • Access to sports fields
  • Art room
  • Audiovisual aids
  • Auditorium
  • Cafeteria
  • Computer lab
  • Gym
  • Internet access
  • Kitchen
  • Library
  • Music room
  • Performance stage
  • Science lab
Note: Data provided by community members,
needs to be verified by school leaders.

Let your school shine!

School leaders: Help your school shine on GreatSchools
by verifying community responses, adding program highlights
and more! Get started »

Sports

Boys sports
  • Basketball
  • Football
  • Soccer
  • Track
  • Wrestling
Girls sports
  • Basketball
  • Soccer
  • Track
  • Volleyball

Arts & music

Music
  • Band
  • Choir / Chorus
  • Instrumental music lessons
  • Jazz band
  • Orchestra
  • Vocal lessons / coaching
Performing arts
  • Drama
Note: Data provided by community members,
needs to be verified by school leaders.

Upcoming Events

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School culture

Parent involvement
  • Chaperone school trips
  • Join PTO/PTA
  • Organize fundraising events (school auction, bake sales, etc.)
  • Volunteer in the classroom
Note: Data provided by community members,
needs to be verified by school leaders.

Apply

To learn more about enrolling, please call the school.
 

TIP: Don't forget to ask about documents required for enrollment, such as your child's birth certificate, proof of address, or a record of immunizations.

 
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201 SW County Line Rd
Des Moines, IA 50320
Phone: (515) 242-8447

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