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California Schools to Watch is a statewide program implemented by the California League
of Educators, California Department of Education, California Middle Grades Alliance, National Forum, and the California Schools to Watch model schools.
McKinleyville Middle School

Redesignated: 2009, 2012, 2015, 2018

Designated 2006

McKinleyville Union School District

Humboldt County

John Husome, Principal

2285 Central Avenue, McKinleyville, CA 95519

(707) 839-1508

School Characteristics

Community: Small Town. Enrollment: 384. Grade Levels: 6-8. Schedule: Mixed grade level advisory (House) program. Collaborative periods by grade level departments which meet every Monday.

School Demographics

Free/Reduced Lunch: 55%. English Learners: 2%

Replicable Practices

  • Curriculum teams meet daily to focus on Learning Targets, promising practices for differentiation, and a highly articulated Tuning Protocol focused on instruction and student learning.

  • McKinleyville uses peer observation/coaching as well as lesson study protocols as a part of the process to calibrate student learning. Teams meet weekly with site administration to evaluate the process.

  • With one hundred percent participation, teachers volunteer to work with the site Instructional Coach resulting in increased personal reflection on practices, more informal assessments and feedback to parents and students, and feedback to the teacher on “what is happening during the lesson.”

  • The school’s highly effective shared leadership model is implemented by the Leadership Team with monthly meetings with administration regarding curriculum, student needs and progress toward instructional goals.

  • Parents and students benefit from the school’s signature student-led conferences twice yearly where students share their portfolios and review their progress with their families. Eighth graders use their fall SLC to complete high school planning/scheduling, and they use their spring SLC to complete a reflective Exit Interview.

  • With the goal of engaging all students in engaging in mathematics through problem solving, reasoning and communication, classrooms post and integrate socio-mathematics norms (Lani Horn) in each classroom providing a protocol for mathematical discourse in the classroom.

  • Resource teachers provide differentiation support in the general education classroom and during their Academic Support class to pre-teach, reteach, and modify work as needed.

  • The multi-grade Advisory Classes are “looped” with the same teacher for the three years at McKinleyville. Students, the advisory planners team, and the PBIS Leadership Team work to develop weekly curriculum focused on the academic and social emotional needs of the students as well as fun activities and team building

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