In 2015-16, we were very excited to welcome students to our brand new, state-of-the-art middle school when the same exceptional academic and co-curricular middle school program for which St. Mary Catholic Schools is known was relocated to our beautiful new education facility.
The new St. Mary Catholic Middle School benefits from its location on the grounds of St. Mary Catholic High School, but stands alone in its 21st-century layout that is designed to accommodate collaborative learning, interactivity, technology and nurture our Catholic faith.
Our faculty and staff at St. Mary Catholic Middle School (SMCMS) are faith-filled, dedicated, knowledgeable and experienced professionals who strive to meet the individual needs of students and the embrace the unique characteristics of a middle school community.
At SMCMS, every student is known by name, and our instructors work to address student’s individual learning styles and social and emotional needs. Discipline issues are rare because students are engaged, involved, known and appreciated.
SMCMS believes strongly that parents are partners in the learning process and encourages parents to become involved as volunteers in school to further foster that partnership. We offer frequent after school socials so students can have fun with peers in a safe and welcoming atmosphere.
Our middle school focuses on the values that so many seek in a quality education: superior academic results, faith formation, the building of character, and a safe, caring community where each child is accepted, respected and never lost in the crowd.
St. Mary Catholic Middle School is accredited by the Wisconsin Religious and Independent Schools Accrediting Agency (WRISA), which is recognized by the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction (DPI) and the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. SMCMS is also a member, through St. Mary Catholic Schools, of the National Catholic Educational Association (NCEA) and the Wisconsin Council of Religious and Independent Schools.
The design of the school unites the traditions of the Catholic faith with a new, state-of-the-art middle school educational environment. To emphasize Catholic traditions, the layout of the building is organized around three metaphors consistently seen in traditional Catholic architecture: Body, City and Temple, which are represented in the program areas. Body is represented by the gymnasium; City is exemplified through the Commons and social interaction area; and Temple is signified by the academic wing of the building. The “light corridor” or central spine of the building unites these areas.
To create a learning environment that promotes academic excellence, the new middle school layout incorporates many aspects of a contemporary learning. The classroom arrangement includes flexible grade-level communities, or “pods,” each containing 3-4 large core classrooms; adjacent collaborative, independent learning areas; group study/project rooms and student lockers. The collaborative learning spaces include flexible furniture and technology to accommodate multiple instructional needs with visual transparency between classrooms.
Rather than having a separate classrooms with desks in rows or blocks, each room in the area is separated by glass walls, enabling teachers to oversee multiple groups of students engaged in different activities. Furnishings are mobile and are shaped for easy reconfiguration depending upon the task at hand.
The Commons seats 150 students for lunch and can be used as a gathering space for large school events or after-hours activities.
The gymnasium will be used for physical education classes and as a competition court with bleacher seating for 300. The gym can be divided into two separate courts for practices and tournaments.
The library/media center is an interactive space with flexible furnishings to meet various needs from research to group interaction. It includes areas for books and reading, as well as a media area and green screen where students can create reports and learn to use audio-visual equipment.
Every area of the school is flooded with natural light, providing a pleasantly lit backdrop for schoolwork.
Nooks and comfortable spaces for reading or studying individually or in a group are located throughout the building.
The overall design accommodates current and probable future technology trends. The building has complete wireless capability and SMART Boards throughout. Seventh and eighth grade students will be assigned laptops to be used in the classroom and at home for homework, projects and research. Sixth grade students will use laptops during the school day and may take them home with parental permission and supervision.
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