Exemplary Middle School Model

Cedar Hill is based on the exemplary middle school model. Four pillars of exemplary middle schools provide the organizational structure.

1. Advisory
Each student is placed in a class group called an Advisory. Students have an Advisory teacher who is their primary care giving adult in the school. Advisory teachers are also the main contact with a student’s home.

Students meet their Advisory teacher at the start of every day for approximately 30 minutes and part of the academic program is taught by the same teacher. Advisory sessions develop the emotional and social intelligence skills of our students. Advisory is very much the soul of our program at Cedar Hill.

2. Interdisciplinary Teaming, Planning and Teaching
Students are organized into ‘teams’ of three or four advisories creating a ‘school within a school.’ Each group of students shares a schedule and is taught by the team of teachers. Team teachers plan together, sometimes teach together, and sometimes share subjects and the design of interdisciplinary units together.

3. Flexible Block Scheduling
Most of the timetable for each advisory is flexible. Teachers have the freedom to decide when each discipline is taught as long as the outcomes for each course are addressed and mastered. Each team receives allotted times to access the gymnasium. Band and Exploratory classes are also scheduled for them.

4. Exploratories
All students in a team receive the same exploratory classes. Each student participates in three ten week long exploratories which may include Woodwork, Foods/Textiles, and Art. If teams are larger than three advisories, extra exploratories are added. Exploratory classes add opportunities for creativity, provide a focus on life and develop leisure or vocational skills.

Language Instruction
Cedar Hill is a dual track school offering both English and French Immersion programs. Students in both programs benefit from the four areas described above. Students in French Immersion receive a minimum of seventy percent of instruction in French. Students in English programs receive FSL (French as a Second Language) instruction. At the grade 6 and 7 levels, French as a Second Language occurs at least twice a week. At the grade 8 level FSL occurs at least three times a week.

 

Cedar Hill Middle School ensures a fully rounded student approach to education. We emphasize academic excellence; appreciation and performance in Fine Arts; participation in athletics, games, exercise, dance and leisure activities; and instruction in nutrition, healthy life choices and social responsibility. Advisory and the team structure allow us to focus on individual needs within a smaller school community while taking advantage of the resources and facilities a larger school offers.