Next Stop: Middle School  

The trouble with kids is, they grow up.

As parents, we might want to keep them little forever, but they grow up anyway. Which turns out to be a good thing, because it’s fun to go through the stages of life with them.

Even middle school.

Or maybe, especially middle school.

‘Tweeners are tons of fun, and here in Boulder schools for grades 6-8 are geared toward nurturing learning during those middle school years.

As a part of our continuing series on public schools in and around Boulder, following is a summary of Boulder middle schools. To see a complete listing of all middle schools in the Boulder Valley School District, visit BVSD’s middle schools website page.

Boulder’s Public Middle Schools, Starting in NoBo

School information was summarized from BVSD and individual school websites.

Centennial Middle School is a neighborhood school located on the northeast corner of Norwood and 21st with about 625 students. Centennial prides itself on providing academic excellence and a rigorous curriculum, a broad exploratory program, and a distinctive technology experience in a caring and nurturing environment. Elective courses range from foreign language and band to guitar, computer, outdoor education and dance. Extracurricular activities include History Day, Geography Bee, DestiNation Imagination and writing contests. Services include Talented and Gifted, At-Risk, and Special Education. For more information call 720.561.5441.

Casey Middle School is a neighborhood school located in north central Boulder that offers a traditional middle school program and hosts a focus program for dual immersion bilingual education.  As a Pre-Advanced Placement school, Casey helps students develop  study skills for advanced learning. Casey offers a highly ranked math program; a continuum of English classes; bilingual classes in Spanish language arts, reading and social studies; and a Talented and Gifted Program. Electives include Leadership, Baile Folklórico, AVID, Hip-Hop Dance, Skiing and Outdoor Education. Casey was named “School to Watch” in 2004 and 2006 for innovative and effective teaching practices. For more information call 720.561.2700.

Nevin Platt Middle School is a neighborhood middle school that also houses the Platt CHOICE middle school program, both located in east central Boulder.  Platt Middle School offers a conventional middle school program committed to academic rigor and meeting the unique needs of middle-school aged children through an individualized and personalized education. Teachers work together in interdisciplinary teams.  The Platt CHOICE program stresses experiential learning linked to academic rigor. The Platt CHOICE program features multi-age grouping, integrated subjects and alternative assessment. Students apply for Platt CHOICE through open enrollment, while Platt is available without open enrolling to students in the school’s designated attendance area. For more information call 720.561.5536.

Manhattan School of Arts and Academics is an arts focus school located in south central Boulder. Manhattan has an international student population and was the first school in the Front Range to adopt “No Place for Hate” in collaboration with the Anti-Defamation League. Students participate in an integrated curriculum with exploratory classes and an accelerated math program. Arts include theater, visual arts, band, orchestra and choir and are offered daily in a two-period arts block. Extracurricular activities include jazz band, choir, theater productions, middle level athletics, and Science Club. Manhattan offers an English as a Second Language (ESL) Program and Intensive Learning Center. For more information call 720.561.6300.

Horizons K-8 School is a focus school located in east central Boulder. Horizons’ philosophy is that students learn best when surrounded by a sense of family and teamwork. Students are guided to become self-directed learners through individualized learning in small class sizes. All students participate in community service learning projects and parents are actively involved through volunteering at school. Horizons has been named by 5280 Magazine as one of the top 100 schools in Denver Metro area; recognized by Global Education Fund for exemplary commitment to the world’s children; named as a UNICEF Emissary School; and is a repeat-recipient of the John J. Irwin School of Excellence. For more information call 720.561.3600.

Summit Middle Charter School was BVSD’s first public charter school, established in 1996 and located in south Boulder. Summit is known for its rigorous academic curriculum and high levels of student effort and achievement. Summit values scholarship, academic achievement, creativity and service, and strives to elicit academic achievement commensurate with each student’s ability, to master educational fundamentals and the development of critical thinking skills, and to enhance each student’s social and emotional development and foster positive relationships among peers.  Students are prepared to succeed in rigorous high school programs. Summit is a repeat-recipient of the John Irwin School of Excellence Award and received the US Department of Education Blue Ribbon School Award in 2003, 2004 and 2012. For more information call 720-561-3900.

Southern Hills Middle School is a neighborhood school located in south Boulder. Committed to high academic standards and outstanding student achievement, Southern Hills students have been recognized for outstanding achievement in local, state, and national competitions in science, history, math, and music. Southern Hills offers accelerated and honors classes in math, language arts and foreign language, and has SmartBoard technology along with the use of the Clicker assessment system in every classroom. Students receive a solid foundation of academic excellence in a caring and nurturing environment rich in personal relationships. Southern Hills is a John Irwin School of Excellence. For more information call 720-561-3400.

Boulder Universal is BVSD’s online school for middle and high school students. Boulder Universal offers flexible hours and highly differentiated content. For more information call 720-561-5297.

Mark Your Calendar

If you and your child are considering a focus school or school that is not your designated neighborhood school, submit your Open Enrollment application for the 2015-16 school year between Dec. 1 and Jan. 16.

Take a School Tour

To find out when your school event is, click here.

Learn More

To learn more about Open Enrollment in BVSD, read our post on Open Enrollment or visit the BVSD website.

To see a full listing of the middle schools in Boulder, Lafayette, Louisville, Superior, parts of Broomfield, and the mountain communities of Jamestown, Gold Hill, and Nederland, click here.

Stay tuned for our posts on high schools in Boulder.


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