Overall, I have not been very impressed with the teachers at the school. My daughter should have learned to write an essay, no writing has been done, her math teachers have not been good (we supplement at home), her Chinese teacher is really nice but I doubt she will be prepared for Chinese 2 at the end of the year, overall, they are just "eh."
The children are now (since new principal) treated like they are in elementary school, so they are not given any freedoms or opportunities to grow and model good behavior, demonstrate compassion and empathy. They try to force it with their ROAR dollars instead of just letting kids get natural consequences and privileges for good and bad behaviors.
My daughter is now an 8th grader at MSM. We loved her 6th grade year when Dr. Bass was the principal. The school ran smoothly. After the new principal took over, we felt that the school got worse. There was a lot of teacher turnover, all of the great organization was gone and the feeling that we had selected a great school was no longer there. My daughter was now repeating electives, not getting in certain classes, scheduling seemed like a disaster, they did not know how to manage the AIG kids very well, and each year started treated the kids like they were in elementary school rather than rising high school students.
We have had a wonderful experience at Moore Square Middle School. We selected it for the small size. Our daughter started last year in the 6th grade. I loved that there were only 6 - 6th grade teachers. I felt I got to know all of them since there were so few of them. This year there are 6 7th grade teachers. Whenever I have had a question or concern, the teachers responded to my messages very quickly. Last year when I had a concern about my child's progress, I very easily set up a meeting where all her teachers were present. Teachers would email or call me directly if they had a concern. After school tutoring was provided every week if needed. I truly felt each teacher took a personal interest in my child. This year, in the 2nd week of school, I've already had great communication with my daughter's teachers. The Guidance Counselors are extremely helpful and supportive and the other administrators TRULY have an open door policy. The class sizes are small and my daughter has been able to benefit from great AIG instruction for those classes where she needed that stimulation. My daughter has participated in superb electives thus far. It was easy for her to get the electives of her choice because of the small school size. She learned so much in her Piano elective last year that this year, when we began private lessons, her current piano teacher was able to skip her ahead in the beginning books she is using. I also love the way the teachers use the downtown Raleigh neighborhood to enhance the curriculum through walking field trips to museums and other downtown attractions!
While no school is perfect, if you're searching for an intimate middle school experience, you should really give Moore Square a look!
We are a family that has been very involved with our child's education and tend to be very involved in school volunteering and getting to know the administration. We enrolled our child at Moore Square AIG/GT Magnet School after comparing our options at other AIG/GT magnets, our extremely large neighborhood school and charter schools. We believe we made the right decision and are so happy we chose the Square. Transitioning to middle school was a breeze for our child. Many things contributed to our decision and her easy transition. First, the AIG/GT magnet program with its core classes and elective offerings were of primary importance. All students benefit, especially at this age, from diverse offerings. They may love science or math or social sciences, but at this school they can relate those passions into electives that actually implement those core subjects. You might have chess, Genetics, Military History, Battle of the Books, drama, and on and on. This is where future interests and possible career paths can take shape. Also, students in the AIG program here are grouped in their Core Classes with other AIG or high-performing students. So if identified in math, they get AIG Science. For Language Arts, they also get AIG Social Studies. Four full classes per day of AIG instruction--no pull-out. Second, the intimate size of 450 affects everything in a positive way: class size, carpool time, communication with teachers and administration, behavior issues, getting additional help if needed. Students and parents can feel part of the community and not a number. Third, the location is fantastic. Downtown is thriving and the students partake in walking field trips to the performing arts center, history and science museums, corporations and community gardens. The size of the school is easy for middle schoolers to get around and it feels like home very quickly. Athletics are joint with Ligon, so students try out and play on Ligon's teams, which is about a mile away and an activity bus transports them. The fact that students here come from all over the Triangle is a testament to its desirability. Students are getting the atmosphere of a private school at a WCPSS school. Dr. Jordan, the fantastic new principal, is on a mission to take Moore Square to the next level. Book a tour, look at the school and imagine your child thriving there.
We are at Moore square this year. Have a sixth grade boy who is AIG and young. We wanted a smaller school so that he wouldn't be lost in the shuffle. We love Moore Square! The teachers are so supportive and great with the kids. They are super dedicated and he has learned so much already. There have been a few fights mostly girl fights but I think that is mostly because it is middle school. Those were dealt with immediately and they have kids in fight do mediation before going back to class so that any conflict is really resolved. I have never heard of this anywhere else. The communication is great! Most teachers use remind for homework and they send school updates every week. The homework does not take two hours like they tell you. We were worried about that.
They have changed over relatively recently to AIG Gt and I hear it's getting better every year. The electives are amazing and the kids really get what they ask for. The band is run by an amazing teacher and the kids cheer for each other in concerts when they mess up. There are a few issues with scheduling and the change over to AIG and new principal but they are making great improvements. I think it will be a top tier magnet that has a super long wait list within two years. I hope not because I like it small! My child loves it there and has many favorite teachers and he is not been a school loving child. The kids are very diverse which we love. It is not a school within a school like Ligon or carnage. My child has made friends with lots of different kids. The band concerts and honor roll awards assembly included families from all backgrounds. Everyone was there to support the kids. It was very nice. The only thing we really don't like is the busing so we drive and it's not fun! But he is doing so well it's worth it to us. Also the female PE teacher is great but the male PE teacher needs some major help. He does not like his job and it shows. We may find other problems along the way but so far so good
Our experience with Moore Square has been fantastic. The communication has been the best we have experienced. From communicating at the beginning of the year all of the school events and key dates so that busy parents can plan ahead to attend (much appreciated!), the weekly reminders and regular updates on student progress. Our children are being challenged and the communication with teachers and staff has been the great. We have also found the teachers and administration to be energized and engaged. So glad we made the move to Moore Square. There are great things happening there!