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5301 Pleasant Ridge Rd
Knoxville, TN 37912

(865) 594-1345
(865) 594-1339
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Map of Northwest Middle School address.

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January 21, 2014
I have had 2 children in this school now and am very disappointed with it. After a change of some teachers and administrators, I had hopes for improvement, but this has not been the case. Teachers refuse to contact parents when there are issues in the class with the child being off task. My son repeatedly tells me other children are distracting him and that the teachers don't explain the work well. I'm over this school and praying that my transfer request comes through this year.

- submitted by a parent
May 28, 2013
I am a Mother of 2 girls that went to this school and as a parent I was nervous at first but all the teachers were wonderful with everything I asked or my daughters if they needed help they were always there If your child wants to learn this is a great school for them they had fun learning and the rewards for having good grades was a very nice touch I just want to say thank you and sad they are in high school now again thank you for everything

- submitted by a parent
June 02, 2011
I think this school is amazing I am a student here. At first I was scared to go here , but when I got there it is like any normal school. I also learned a lot here and had no problem doing it. It is your child's choice to learn or not to learn. I chose learn and I was very successful.I know Northwest has a bad reputation, but that was the past and we are quickly recovering. We have new principles and new staff all we have to do is get parents involved and you need to encourage your child to listen! In honors this year I was challenged to think like I never had before and I learned a lot from the lessons and you can to!

- submitted by a community member
January 24, 2011
Not pleased at all. My son is in the 6th grade at Northwest and in Honors level classes. He has ADD and we have discussed this, at length, with his teachers. We have asked for their cooperation in managing his grades and asked that they keep us informed of his progress. Despite our requests, our son's grades in 2 classes have dropped to an "F" and there has been no contact from the teachers of these classes. (In one class, he dropped from an A and a B in the other.) The teachers stress that they will upload the students' grades on their website so that parents can monitor their grades, but many teachers go 2 or more weeks between updates. This can make it very difficult to make corrective action in time to help the child succeed. I had hoped to avoid this school because of what I'd heard, but we weren't fortunate enough. It's sad, but the school just doesn't seem to have the teachers dedicated to help improve the image (and performance) of the school.

- submitted by a parent
July 10, 2009
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a student
April 14, 2009
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a parent
March 31, 2009
I have a son who is currently in the 7th grade at Northwest, and another who will be entering the school in the Fall. I am very pleased with what my son has achieved since being at Northwest. It is an awesome school, with a great administrative staff. I am involved at the school in many capacities, and am very pleased with the progress that Northwest is making. They are only getting better every year. It saddens me that a bad repuatation from 5-10 years ago can stay with a school forever. This is a community school, that are loosing so many students in the community to other , what they think are better Middle Schools. I also work for Knox County Schools, and I am very concerned about where my children get their education. We are very happy with Northwest.

- submitted by a parent
no rating November 25, 2008
I am a senior in high school now, and quite frankly when I went to northwest, it was a little unsafe. However, I would never ever in a million years change the school i went too, northwest gave me some of the greatest moments i have ever had in my entire life, the teachers I had were absolutly wonderful and they sent me on the right track to high school where I am now, they dont sugar-coat things and that teaches so many real world lessons, I highly recommend this school!

- submitted by a student
September 26, 2008
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a student
April 10, 2008
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- submitted by a parent
December 22, 2007
I went to Northwest Middle School 2 years ago and the school is a great school to send your child to because the teachers have great teaching methods.

- submitted by a student
November 05, 2007
Northwest is a wonderful place to send your child and the value added scores that the school just received indicate that children are learning. All students are not going to learn the same amount at the same time. i am pleased that the scores show that learning is going up in the school for all children in all subjects. I am glad that my son and daughter attend Norhwest.

- submitted by a parent
October 19, 2007
Since my child has been at Northwest, she has had a wonderful experience. She is excelling in class and feels confident as she gets ready for high school. Truancy falls on the parent, not the school. Keep up the tremendous turnaround. Northwest has change so positively in academics and discipline since the administrators took over the mess Mr. Ward let happen while he was there. The morale, attitude, and environment is so improved with both staff and students!

- submitted by a parent
October 19, 2007
Northwest is making such a positive impression on my son. He loves to go to school and is excelling in class. I am glad that I sent my son to Northwest instead of switching schools! Mr. McCollum and the staff at the school are alway willing to help and assist without hesitation. This is the best I have seen Northwest and That goes back 15 years!!

- submitted by a parent
October 10, 2007
northwest has bad academic scores and a high truancy rate. I strongly dislike it!!!!!!!

- submitted by a student
August 08, 2007
Northwest was my first choice in deciding where to teach. NMS students astound me daily with their inquisitive natures and desire for knowledge. I rarely assign formal homework, yet my students come to class with curriculum-related nuggets of information gleaned from newspapers, the internet, or life experience. My kids DO homework though I rarely assign it! Our TCAP scores show gains in most areas and surpass many area schools in some subjects. The 'failing' status assigned to us this year resulted from difficulties in attendance and a failure to make adequate yearly progress in one subgroup. Having interacted as a parent, a teacher, and a student with a number of Knox County schools, I find the faculty at NMS superior. My colleagues are devoted, caring, knowledgeable, and dynamic. Former students accurately report academic progress to me spontaneously. When a child reflects upon successes and failures and reports them honestly, That's success!

- submitted by a teacher
August 03, 2007
I have not been pleased with the school for the last 2 years my child attended. Few teachers care whether your child is taught anything, is safe, etc.

- submitted by a parent
July 26, 2007
This school is making a tremendous turnaround with academics and discipline. You can finally send your child to Northwest and be assure of a safe environment and opportunities to learn. The administrative team is easy to work with and go out of there way to let you come in the school and visit. I am glad I decided to send my child to Northwest!

- submitted by a parent
no rating July 16, 2007
Don't be fooled by the label of 'Failing School' northwest has many great things going on and judge them by your childs education not NCLB. Mr. mcCollum and his staff have done a fantastic job of reinventing school academics and discipline. Significant change will take time. The fifteen years of multiple principals, discipline and academic chaos cannot be solved overnight. Knox county has finally gotten an administrative team over at Northwest that is making a difference. Leave them in place. Our kids now love it!

- submitted by a parent
June 14, 2007
Northwest is a great school to send your child for a good education. The administration, and teachers work hard to insure a quality education for all the students. My experiences with Northwest are all pleasant. Mr. McCollum is very accessible and has a firm but fair discipline code in place. The TAP and AVID programs are making a difference with our kids as evidenced by the rising test scores. Go into Northwest now and the difference in the school environment is awesome. Keep up the Great Job!

- submitted by a parent
June 11, 2007
hi i wanted to write to tell every one the truth about northwest middle i think the school is great. the teachers my son had on team 6 A is wonderful teachers. my son learn alot and as far as wanting to set up a meeting with one or talk with one they got back with me by the end of the day. my son didnot have any problems. he had a great year. his grades was exalent. as far as homework he had his share of it. sometimes alittle to much but he done without any trouble. and if he did need any help from the teachers they did help him until he understand it. if you did go and had to talk to any of the priciples they took time and listen and took care of the problems .everyone their is great people

- submitted by a parent
May 25, 2007
This school has made a tremendous turnaround. The administration with Mr. McCollum in charge have the discipline under control. This school now allow our kids to learn and be safe. This school is now one of the better middle schools. Parents need to get involved and visit Northwest. They will be in for a very Big and pleasant surprise.

- submitted by a parent
May 24, 2007
Northwest is doing great! For those parents worried about the rumors on Northwest, that is in the past. Mr. McCollum and the administrators, and teachers have created an atmosphere of suoervision, learning, and discipline. It is fun to take your kids to Northwest once again. The community needs to see to it that they keep this administrative team in place, keeping the teachers, and fixing the school's zone.

- submitted by a parent
May 24, 2007
Northwest is a great school. Too much stuff from the past has effected the reputation of Northwest. That is too bad because The students that are going there will tell you that the discipline and learning there is great. Mr. McCollum has done a terrific job of turning that school around.Several several children in the neighborhood said they liked Northwest better then Gresham or Powell where they had gone before. I have been very pleased with the academics and discipline policy with the school. The parents just need to be more involved and help spread the word about the positive change at Northwest. the only parents That are upset at Northwest now are the ones going to pick up their child for being disciplined. That had not occurred in the past.

- submitted by a parent
April 26, 2007
Terrible School! parents beware! your child deserves a better education! your child deserves to be treated with respect from their teachers! I can not think of one good thing to say about my childs school!

- submitted by a parent
March 19, 2007
My son began the sixth grade this year at Northwest, after spending his elementary years at Pleasant Ridge. I must admit I was apprehensive about him attending from all the bad stories I had heard about Northwest. But after his orientation there during the 5th grade, he was really stoked about going. He continually raved about the teachers and the band program. Those stories I heard were just that... stories. They have cracked down and keep discipline at a high level, while retaining a close relationship with the students. Parental involvement is the key to making a good school a great school. Don't separate your child's life at school with their life at home. You don't have to join every organization they offer, just find your place to help, then become a part of your child's school life. The main principal Mr. McCollum as well as Dr. Jill Hobby are the greatest people.

- submitted by a parent
November 13, 2006
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a former student
November 06, 2006
I would like to say, as an eight-grader at Northwest, I have had no problems at Northwest. We are in the process of improving our discipline problems. Also, our new staff members are working their butts of to help the school improve and teachers willing to teach. I haven't seen hardly any problems with myself, nor any classmates! The reputation of our school is ridiculous. All the parents who are complaining about teachers not calling them back, what do you expect, teachers not to be busy and have all the time to deal with you! If you will just give them a chance! You can't trash our school if you'r not the one there everyday! We are improving tremulously well and plan to keep doing that for years to come. Don't be scared and think you have to run away and move. Just try it! Thank you for reading!

- submitted by a student
November 03, 2006
I'm a 7th grader at Northwest. I was extremely nervous my 6th grade year because I had heard nothing but bad rumors about Northwest, I was even going to go to Gresham after 17 days because my mom didn't like the thought of me going to Nwms either. During the 17 days at Northwest I really started to like it and I still do. It's kool for school. I like all my teachers they are awesome and if you don't understand they'll explain. I mean I do think that Northwest was a bad school before Mr. Dunlap got there, but it's actually a great school[Mr.Mculum is awesome too] . I made advanced in everything but 1 subject on TCAPS last year, and I know I'll do well this year also because I feel I'm getting a good

- submitted by a student
October 11, 2006
This is my son's 3rd year at NWM. We have been very pleasantly surprised. He has had outstanding teachers, and the quality of discipline has greatly improved. Please dismiss the rumors of the past and get involved in this great school now.

- submitted by a parent
July 10, 2006
My children began Northwest in 2005. They had gone to a small town school all their life and my new husbands son had gone to Norwood. We had no idea how Northwest was. It did not take us long to decide a move was a necessity. My children who had always loved school were terrified to go now. They were physically and verbally abused.

- submitted by a parent
May 25, 2006
It's very difficult for me to state my feelings about NWMS. My third child is currently enrolled there. My oldest child received a decent education. My middle child, with the help of several concerned teachers, received a very good education, particularly in Math & English. But this school year has been alarming in that I ask my child every weekday 'do you have any homework or tests to study for?'. My child responds 'no' almost every day. Although I've been in contact with the teachers, I'm still not sure which subjects my child is really learning and in which areas my child is falling short. I am desperate to see TCAP scores, & will contact Knox Co. about this. I have left messages for 4 different teachers/administrators in the last 7 days--not one has returned my call. It's very discouraging. Thanks to all who try to make NWMS a better school.

- submitted by a parent
January 27, 2006
I am a student there and the students are the ONLY people who can tell you the truth northwest is a terrible school. parents of the students you arent there 7 hours a day are you? i have brought home no homework this year two of my teachers have quit this year and i have learned almost nothing. Send your child too a better school for their sake.

- submitted by a student
January 24, 2006
I am a parent of a NWM school child & I have have had nothing but problems out of the school regarding the teachers. I was afraid of the schhol violence , and told my child to stay out of the bathrooms, but come to find out the problems are in the classrooms in front of the teachers. My child has been cursed at by 2 different teachers in front of me and the classroom and nothing has been done about it. I agree that parents need to get involved & see exactly what is going on. My child has yet to bring home any homework I wonder what they are learning or are they just being pushed through ?

- submitted by a parent
January 15, 2006
I am a parent of 5 children. 2 have completed NMS and 2 are still there. I am also a teacher at a west middle school. I see more problems at the school where I work than the one my children attend. Over the last 5 years NWM has improved greatly and continues to improve. All of my children have been 'A' students thanks to the great teachers! Allow yourself to stop thinking about how NWM was 15-20 years ago and you will see it is becoming one of the best schools in knoxville. Keep this in mind, fights, drugs, problem students, etc are at all schools, they are just 'kept quite' in the more prominant area's. My only complaint regarding NWM is not the school or staff, it's that parents aren't involved, yet they want to complain. More parent involvment in the schools means better schools and better students.

- submitted by a parent
November 20, 2005
I have four kids that have attened this school and I have had nothing but trouble. They talk about the parents getting more involved and working with the teachers,I have made many trips to the school and have made many phone calls with no responce. I will never let one of my children attend this school again.

- submitted by a parent
October 10, 2005
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a parent
September 22, 2005
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a parent
September 10, 2005
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a student
August 23, 2005
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a student
August 21, 2005
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a parent
August 21, 2005
Northwest has change principals! new administrtion and anyone that says it's the worse school they have ever encountered... Is illiterate! the word is worst! fyi! i just atteneded a meeting for band kids there on thursday night and the band director is fantastic, she totally supports my child. If her discipline in her class alone reflects the change of the school, then i am all for it! i believe that the teachers are 100% on our kids side and i will, as a parent, participate whenever my child is involved. I don't agree with the block scheduling, every other day program, for the special area classes, but this can change in the future if we as parents decide to support not having it! i was in the band as a jr. High member and i loved it. I totally support what northwest is doing right now! thank you! nms parent

- submitted by a parent
July 18, 2005
Northwest middle school is one of the most unsafest schools i have EVER sent my child to. it is unsafe and when i request confrences to teachers it seems like forever before they finally budge. the principle is not ready for this kind of school.

- submitted by a parent
July 17, 2005
This school is the worse school I have ever had to work with. I have three children and have lived in two states. I have dealt with several schools and have homeschooled in the past. There is NO communication from the teachers to the parents even when requested repeatedly.There is little attention from the principal and an absolute failure to follow up with the parents. The quality of the education is terrible. My son learned nothing! He never had a text book to bring home. He was never even given a locker and had to carry his stuff around the school all day. I am not pleased and plan to home school or MOVE!

- submitted by a parent
no rating May 31, 2005
This school is no worse or no better than any other. The middle years are turbulent years for any student. Northwest's dirty laundry is always aired to public viewing...school's like Farragut have the same problems, they are just hidden from public scrutiny.

- submitted by a parent
May 20, 2005
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a parent
February 09, 2005
I had 3 kids go to this school one i had to take out the first week. the other 2 can barely go through the day they haven't learned anything. Too many fights grafitti not enough books. Over population the list goes on. this must be the worst school in knox county. If you can don't send your child here.

- submitted by a parent
January 30, 2005
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a former student
January 28, 2005
Now with three children having been in this school, I would say to anyone thinking of placing a child here to move into another area. There is a lack (fear) of disciplining certain students, a focus on just getting through the day, not enough textbooks for each child so that they are not able to take their books home, little communication with teachers even when requested, and children who once made good grades tend to start falling off in academics. Comments from other teachers in the system, consulers from private areas, and others knowledgable of the Knox County School system will tell you that this is the worst school. Although there is a 64% economically disadvantaged student population, there are no Title I funds distributed here. Overall, I am greatly disappointed with this school and intend to move my children out of the school system this summer.

- submitted by a parent
January 11, 2005
Northwest Middle School has a very diverse population. The teachers are fantastic, the administration is outstanding and the kids are just typical middle school kids. The band program at Northwest is excellent, as well as all of the related arts classes. The students that participate in extra-curricular activities, such as band, music, the arts, or sports are higher achievers and have great potential. Many of the students that are at Northwest are not into any activities because of the fact that about 75% of the kids are on free and reduced lunch. Which indicates that Northwest Middle School is thriving only because of the dedicated teachers and administration that work there. Northwest may be a diverse school with a diverse population, but the people that work there love the kids that attend Northwest and are truly dedicated to making Northwest successful.

- submitted by a parent
January 01, 2005
A fun school, though a little shifty. Note that there are hardly any road blocks between us and violence here, so if your kid isn't actaully fighting, I wouldn't complain! The principals will tell you that it's 100% teriffic here, but it isn't. Only your kids can tell you the real story, and chances are if everything's fine, they aren't. Teachers are little punching bags to the kids here, not litterally, but they take verbal abuse all the time responselessly. They just get called names and cursed out until I would probably hurt someone if I was pushed so far. Our Teachers should be on the edge of a breakdown.

- submitted by a parent
November 20, 2004
This review submitted without content.


- submitted by a student
November 16, 2004
In my 3 years at this middle school, I can hardly remember learning much of anything useful. I remember fun times in some classes, as well as threats and fights in the hallways. I dont' know if much as changed since I went to high school in 2000, but when I was there, the school wasn't very good, though it had gotten better. If you just want your child just to 'get through' middle school, this is the place to be. If you want him to learn something and be ready for high school, look else where. Or let them be in the band.

- submitted by a former student
August 05, 2004
As an upcoming 7th grader, i have to say that last year was FUN. I may like fun, but that is not what we need. We need to be taught better. I haven't learned a thing last year all exceot some things in math, because i had a great teacher Mrs. Gray. I also had an two awful teacher's. We can't learn anything because of misbehaved kids and the teachers can't teach anything because they have to put up with them. Last year I had two teachers that if you needed help on anything they would tell you that you should have been listening. So I advise you to be cautious of these problems before you send your child here.

- submitted by a student
July 29, 2004
As a former student, I can say with confidence that this was the worst school I ever attended. The teachers are incompetent, and any good teachers that found their way here left immediately. There are broken windows and graffiti-covered stalls. After overhearing a bomb threat, I talked to the principal and he just looked at me like I was wasting his time.

- submitted by a former student
May 28, 2004
I feel the leadership and discipline in not in control at the school. Bullies are not dealt with as they need to be. The teachers do not have an atmosphere for teaching so the students are not learning all they need to learn. I felt so strongly about it I pulled my son out of the school. His state standardized test scores were horrible. I am now home schooling him and he says he has learned more in a month at home than all year at the school!

- submitted by a parent
January 30, 2004
The lack of discipline contributes greatly to the low test score and overall quality of the school. The teachers can not teach due to the enviroment they must work in.

- submitted by a parent
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Northwest Middle School
5301 Pleasant Ridge Rd, Knoxville, TN  37912
(865) 594-1345
Last modified Northwest Middle School is a Public school that serves grades 6-8. It has received a GreatSchools rating of 3 out of 10 based on academic quality.
Northwest Middle School Rating: 3 out of 5 based on 57 reviews. Top