DESCRIPTION OF SCHOOL
Baker County is comprised of several rural communities and is located just west of Jacksonville, Florida. The 2017 population of the county was 28,283 as estimated by the U.S. Census Bureau. That number represents only a 4.3 percent increase from the official census measure in 2010. The average number of persons per square mile in the State of Florida is over 350. (Baker County averages just over forty-six persons per square mile.) The communities of Baker County take pride in their rural status. While Baker County is considered part of the Jacksonville metropolitan area, the small communities have the look and feel of rural Florida. Baker County Middle School (BCMS) is the only public middle school serving students that live in the county. The school has approximately 1200 students in grades six through eight.
The vision of Baker County Middle School is “To prepare individuals to be lifelong learners, self-sufficient, and responsible citizens of good character.” This vision statement was originally developed over a decade ago and is shared by each of the schools in the Baker County School District. Time has shown the relevance of the components of the vision statement. The mission of Baker County Middle school is “Building a legacy of excellence, one student at a time.” The mission statement was revisited this school year by the faculty, staff, and School Advisory Council. The school's mission should represent what it does each and every day to accomplish the long-term vision of the school and district.
In addition to the vision and mission statements of the school, BCMS has been a Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) school for many years. BCMS is currently a PBIS gold status model school. The BCMS PBIS expectations are Respect, Organization, Attitude, and Responsibility (R.O.A.R.). These expectations along with the vision and mission statements guide the daily and long term goals for the school.
From the 2007 school year through 2012, BCMS earned a school grade of "A" each year. In 2013 and 2014, BCMS earned a grade of “B.” For the last four grading cycles, BCMS students and staff earned school grades of "C." The faculty, staff, and school community stakeholders have worked to address the concerns associated with student achievement. There is an expected improvement in student performance based on initiatives implemented at BCMS. Two major initiatives have been implemented since the last AdvancED engagement review to address student achievement. BCMS has adopted a new master schedule for sixth grade. The school has recently changed the structure of the sixth grade classes from students having two core instructors to having five. In addition, the school has transitioned from having teams of teachers that instruct the same group of students to having departments that instruct the same subject area. This has afforded BCMS the opportunity to have these teachers share a common planning period. It is hoped that these efforts and the associated additional expenses will result in increased student achievement.
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