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Welcome from the Head of Middle School

Dear Middle School Families,

St. Patrick's Middle School in Washington D.C. comprises three essential years during which students move from being elementary-age children to young adults on the cusp of high school who have developed the ability to explore and express increasingly complex ideas. These years represent a time of tremendous transition for these young people—intellectually, socially, emotionally, morally, and physically. Guiding this work are extraordinary teachers who reflect our core belief in the infinite value of every child, who understand that these young people, whenever they arrive here, bring their own understanding of themselves and the world we inhabit, and who are determined to help all students achieve their best.

Knowing that students learn best when they can be fully invested in their work, we strive to create classes and experiences that honor student voice, choice, and leadership, while nurturing a strong sense of connection with the adults who guide the work. Middle School classes balance teaching approaches, weaving in and out of project-based curriculum and more traditional methods, ensuring that students master essential skills while they develop the ability to manage their own work and think deeply about meaningful content. All along, we hope we foster joy within the students, a quality that is sometimes forgotten in the busy rush to prepare students for what is next even as they have lives to enjoy in the present.

For years, we have heard from the high schools to which our students matriculate that St. Patrick's students make those schools better places. That is the best feedback we could receive regarding the success of our work with these young people—that they leave St. Patrick's prepared for challenge and confident in themselves in ways that make other communities better. I hope you will come visit our campus and see this reality for yourself.

Dan SpectorAssociate Head of School/Head of Middle School