Middle Schools of Arlington County, Virginia

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There are five middle schools in Arlington County, Virginia, administered by Arlington Public Schools.

Gunston Middle School[edit]

Gunston Middle School is located at 2700 South Lang Street, in or near Arlington Ridge. The principal is Dr. Lori Wiggins. In 2012-13, there were over 800 students enrolled and more than 80 teachers (41 of whom have their Master's Degree).[citation needed] It is accredited through the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. The school was originally called Brandon Junior High. In 1957 the school was renamed Gunston Junior High, named after Gunston Hall, the home of George Mason, the estate is nearby in Fairfax County.

Gunston's mascot is the Hornet. School colors are purple and teal. Sports teams include of basketball, soccer, wrestling, swimming, track and tennis.

Gunston's curriculum includes the continuation program for students who attended the Key Elementary or the Claremont Elementary Spanish Immersion program. Students in this program take three classes each day taught entirely in Spanish: Science, Social Studies and Spanish Language Arts. About 1/3 of the incoming 6th graders come from the Key or Claremont programs. Most people attending Gunston will attend Wakefield High School after graduating from 8th grade.

The school, at the time called Gunston Junior High School and encompassing grades 7, 8, and 9, closed in 1978 after a major decline in enrollments. At the time of its closure, the school mascot was the Falcon, and the school colors were black and gold. Gunston reopened in 1994 to address overcrowding in other area schools. After the re-opening in 1994, it subsequently went through a 3 phase major renovation, funded by the 2000 bond package. Construction was completed in 2003. It was built as a two-story building with a public recreation center and public auditorium.

Demographics [1]
Ethnicity 2018
American Indian/Alaska Native n/a
Asian/Pacific Islander 07.9%
Black 25.1%
Hispanic 43.8%
White 22.5%
Unspecified n/a
ESL Students 112
State Testing
Average % Passing (school vs. state)
Grade 6
Subject 2006
Reading 76% 83%
Mathematics 21% 51%
Grade 7
Subject 2006
Reading 76% 81%
Mathematics 27% 44%
Grade 8
Subject 2006
Reading 66% 72%
Writing 89% 87%
Mathematics 68% 76%
Science 76% 87%

Source: Virginia Department of Education [2]


Kenmore Middle School[edit]

Kenmore Middle School is located at 200 South Carlin Springs Road, in Glencarlyn. The principal is John A. Word, Sr. In 2006-2007, there were 723 students enrolled and over 79 teachers (51 of which have their Master's Degree). It is accredited through the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

Kenmore's mascot is the Cougars. The school colors are green and gold.

Kenmore's building was completed for the 2005-2006 school year. The building contains a larger auditorium, cafeteria, art studio, and library/media center. It is multi-storied unlike the previous building. The previous building as an elementary school and later was a middle school. Most kids attending Kenmore will later on go to Wakefield, and in certain cases they will go to Washington-Lee.

Demographics[3]
Ethnicity 2018
American Indian/Alaskan Native n/a
Asian/Pacific Islander 9.9%
Black 10.4%
Hispanic 52.8%
White 26.9%
Unspecified n/a
ESL Students 120
State Testing
Average % Passing (school vs. state)
Grade 6
Subject 2006
Reading 76% 83%
Mathematics 68% 51%
Grade 7
Subject 2006
Reading 68% 81%
Mathematics 33% 44%
Grade 8
Subject 2006
Reading 66% 72%
Writing 89% 87%
Mathematics 58% 76%
Science 74% 87%

Source: Virginia Department of Education[4]


Swanson Middle School[edit]

Swanson Middle School is located at 5800 North Washington Boulevard. The principal is Renee Harber. In 2012-2013, there were 1,033 students enrolled and 98 teachers (8 of which have their Master's Degree. It is accredited through the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. Swanson was built in 1939 as part of a New Deal program and is the oldest surviving middle school in the county.[5]

Swanson is home of the Admirals, though the school's namesake, Claude A. Swanson, was Secretary of the Navy, and never an "Admiral." They wear white and maroon.

In 1977, a student reportedly started a fire in the school as a prank, and ultimately burning the majority of the roof, including its cupola (a small dome-shaped structure crowning the roof). The student was expelled. Later that year, an unknown student or group of students repeatedly set off the fire alarms as a prank, costing Swanson hundreds of dollars in fines for abusing firemens' time. It is unknown whether the student(s) were ever discovered or apprehended.[6]

Throughout the 1980's and early 90's, rumors circulated about a group of four to six (stories vary) students who played a variety of pranks, one of which involved setting off the school's fire alarms. Other fabled pranks included saying rude things over the intercom system, setting off fire sprinklers, and locking classrooms. It is unknown whether these student stories are related to the fire alarm fiasco or the 1977 fire.[6]

Swanson, in 2011-2012, decided to make three teams for each grade (they used to only have two per grade). For the 2016-17 school year they have made four teams for sixth and seventh grade, as well as renamed them. For sixth grade there are the Clippers, the Schooners and the Sea Hawks. For seventh grade there are the Sea Horses, the Narwhals, the Manatees and the Orcas. For eighth grade there are the Tropical Cyclones, the Hurricanes and the Typhoons. The names were voted on by Swanson students.

Swanson first opened its doors in 1940 as a 7th through 9th grade junior high to relieve crowding at nearby Washington-Lee High School. It is the oldest "junior high" in the state. Because of its unique contribution to education in Virginia as well as its Parisian architecture,[clarification needed] inspired by the then recently restored Colonial Williamsburg, the school is pursuing its listing on the National Register of Historic Places. In recognition of the school's history, the Virginia State Legislature passed a resolution on Swanson’s 50th anniversary in 1990 proclaiming Swanson as Virginia’s first junior high school.[7]

It was constructed with WPA funds on the site of the old Torreyson farm in the growing Westover community. One of two North Arlington junior highs targeted for closure in 1977 due to declining enrollment, Swanson reopened as an intermediate school the following year, and the 9th graders were transferred to W-L and Yorktown high schools. Stratford Junior High, although a newer facility, closed its doors. In the fall of 1990, Swanson once again housed three grades as a middle school. It has undergone several renovations, with the most recent in 2005, and another one scheduled in 2017.

Demographics[8]
Ethnicity 2018
American Indian/Alaskan Native 00.5%
Asian/Pacific Islander 09.9%
Black 06.8%
Hispanic 15.3%
White 67.1%
Unspecified 00.3%
ESL Students 58
State Testing
Average % Passing (school vs. state)
Grade 6
Subject 2016
Reading 78% 89%
Mathematics 66% 74%
Grade 7
Subject 2016
Reading 79% 88%
Mathematics 78% 58%
Grade 8
Subject 2016
Reading 55% 72%
Writing 72% 87%
Mathematics 78% 76%
Science 76% 87%

Source: Virginia Department of Education[9]


Thomas Jefferson Middle School[edit]

Thomas Jefferson Middle School opened as a junior high school in 1938 and was named after the third president of the United States.[7] The original cornerstone was placed with George Washington's trowel.[7] The current facility opened in 1971 and is located at 125 South Old Glebe Road in Arlington, Virginia 22204. It is built as a rectangle with three individual corridors for each grade. Upon entering the main entrance of the school, the administrative offices are to the left and the library is further down the long hall. Here, the three corridors extend themselves to another long hall in which various classrooms are located. Also, three individual staircases are located that lead students to a lower level where lockers are located in individual lobbies. The sixth grade lobby is green, the seventh grade lobby is yellow, and the eighth grade lobby is blue. The sixth and seven grade lobbies are also used as cafeteria seating with the kitchen in the middle. These two lobbies also have small corridors that lead to the school gymnasium. It was renovated in 2010. In 2018 a new elementary school by the name of Alice Fleet is being built right next to the old entrance to the school’s lobby.

Jefferson was designed for use as not only a school but also for community recreation, with the second-largest gymnasium in the state and a community theater that can seat 715 people.[10] The school district works with the local Division of Parks, Recreation and Community Resources to share the facilities.[11]

The school's gymnasium is actually a part of the Thomas Jefferson Community Center. Indoors, a quarter-mile track runs around three basketball courts and past athletic equipment. Outdoors, a half-mile bike trail runs around two athletic fields, two baseball diamonds, two basketball courts and four tennis courts. With the very large space, Arlington County uses the area for the annual Arlington County Fair every August.[12]

Demographics[13]
Ethnicity 2018
American Indian/Alaskan Native 00.3%
Asian/Pacific Islander 9.4%
Black 28.8%
Hispanic 43.7%
White 17.8%
Unspecified n/a
ESL Students 114
State Testing
Average % Passing (school vs. state)
Grade 6
Subject 2006
Reading 78% 83%
Mathematics 28% 51%
Grade 7
Subject 2006
Reading 72% 81%
Mathematics 42% 44%
Grade 8
Subject 2006
Reading 62% 72%
Writing 92% 87%
Mathematics 70% 76%
Science 80% 87%

Source: Virginia Department of Education[14]


Williamsburg Middle School[edit]

Williamsburg Middle School is located at 3600 North Harrison Street. The principal is Mr Brian Boykin[15] In 2007-2008, there were 1,282 students enrolled and over 77 teachers (66 of which have their Master's Degree). It is accredited through the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

The Williamsburg mascot is the "Wolves." An eighth grade student dresses up inside a wolf costume, and interacts with their peers during special events at the school. In the 2013-2014 school year, the students named their mascot William S. Burg. The school colors are white and blue.

There are four teams in each grade (three teams in seventh) along with a separate team (Rockets) for ESOL students. The 6th grade teams consist of the Panthers, Mustangs, Coyotes, and Grizzlies. The 7th grade teams are the Mystics, Capitols, Nationals, and the Wizards; all based on Washington DC sports teams. The 8th grade teams are Wave, Odyssey and the Questers. Outside, there is one field currently, a baseball diamond, one tennis court and a blacktop with a basketball court and four square. There is a multi-usage weight room, an auxiliary gym and the main gym. In 2013, APS (Arlington Public Schools) started construction on a new elementary school on the WMS campus. The elementary school was named by a naming committee selected by the APS School Board, and is called Discovery Elementary School. Most kids attending Williamsburg will later on attend Yorktown High School.

Demographics[16]
Ethnicity [17] 2018
American Indian/Alaskan Native 0%
Asian/Pacific Islander 9%
Black 5.2%
Hispanic 11.4%
White 70%
Unspecified 4.5%
ESL Students 50
State Testing
Average % Passing (school vs. state)
Grade 6
Subject 2016
Reading 94% 83%
Mathematics 94% 81%
Grade 7
Subject 2016
Reading 89% 81%
Mathematics 84% 44%
Grade 8
Subject 2016
Reading 92% 72%
Writing 97% 93%
Mathematics 87% 76%
Science 94% 87%

Source: Virginia Department of Education[18]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Information about Gunston Middle School on GreatSchools
  2. ^ [1] SOL Test Scores for Gunston Middle School, GreatSchools.net
  3. ^ Information about Kenmore Middle School on the Local School Profile "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2007-02-02. Retrieved 2007-01-05.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  4. ^ [2] SOL Test Scores for Kenmore Middle School, GreatSchools.net
  5. ^ "Swanson Middle School's History - Swanson". Swanson. Retrieved 2018-09-25.
  6. ^ a b "Claude A. Swanson Junior High School - Projects & Planning". Projects & Planning. Retrieved 2018-09-25.
  7. ^ a b c (2000) "Washington-Lee High School 75th Anniversary History"
  8. ^ Information about Swanson Middle School on the Local School Profile "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2007-02-02. Retrieved 2007-04-16.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  9. ^ [3] SOL Test Scores for Swanson Middle School, GreatSchools.net
  10. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2007-04-27. Retrieved 2007-04-16.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link) Opera Theatre of Northern Virginia
  11. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2007-02-12. Retrieved 2007-04-16.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link) Arlington Public Schools Web site
  12. ^ Arlington County Fair Online
  13. ^ Information about Thomas Jefferson Middle School on the Local School Profile "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2007-02-02. Retrieved 2007-04-16.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  14. ^ [4] SOL Test Scores for Thomas Jefferson Middle School, GreatSchools.net
  15. ^ "Arlington principal resigns, blaming superintendent for 'hostile work environment,'" Washington Post (retrieved 2 February 2011).
  16. ^ Information about Williamsburg Middle School on the Local School Profile "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2007-02-02. Retrieved 2007-04-16.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  17. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-12-30. Retrieved 2013-12-29.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  18. ^ [5] SOL Test Scores for Williamsburg Middle School, GreatSchools.net

External links[edit]