The cluster system at Barrington Middle is designed to enable the students to learn and apply knowledge with success. One example is that there are no Study Hall periods, and instead there are F.A.S.T (Flexible Academic Study Time) periods, where students can delve deeper into a subject area and probe the concept more specifically. Additionally the school has a Ramp-up period, where students receive extra help in a subject in which they may be having trouble. The cluster teachers send home a monthly calendar, on the first of the month, which lists all projects, quizzes, tests and their respective dates. It is a highly efficient system. The students at this school are quite possibly the most well-adjusted I have ever encountered. Due to our frequent moves, we have now experienced 5 different school districts, and Barrington is the best in terms of emotional health and academic well-being.
There is recognition for effort, for character, and for good citizenship at this school. Students occasionally work in pairs or small groups, and they therefore circulate among different people throughout the year.
While the school is great, the community as a whole is very disappointing. There is a lot of pressure to be perfect. There are many girls who starve themselves, and cut themselves. I am shocked - the more I learn, the more I worry about the long term mental health of the kids in the middle and high school.
I was a student at this school for 2 years and, let me tell ya, right now I cannot imagine a better school. I mean sure, there's always room for improvements, but that's probably only due to the attitudes of some of the students. The students by the way, and I don't know if they do this in every or many schools, are split into nine different clusters, three for each grade, all of which are named for colors. Some of the clusters are loop clusters, meaning the students would be there for 2 years. I was in Aqua Cluster, which is a 6-7 grade loop, as there can also be 7-8 loop. Each cluster is special in their own ways and so whatever cluster a student gets they're almost guaranteed they'll love it and be biased. For example, our cluster is the only cluster still allowed to do overnight field trips. But because we got to do those lots of kids in other clusters hated us. There were also LOTS of other kids who thought they were all cool so they were really mean, and some smoked weed. But bullying is the thing a student most likely won't have to worry about. The eager-to-work teachers aren't the kind to let you deal with your problems, but rather help you. I honestly LOVE BMS :P
The success of the school starts with the Administration: Superintendent, Assistant Super, Administrative staff, Principal, VP, faculty, support staff, community,parents and children. Everyone works together. Kids take their studies and school life seriously, they are involved in many afterschool activities, or getting help, going to the library. Teachers don't let kids fall through the cracks. Kids do not have the option of failing. There is also a lot of social services support in the school. Barrington Middle School is like no other. They are at the top of their game.