- Horace Mann Middle School
Horace Mann Middle School, a three year learning experience for students in grades 6-8, is located in the center of
Charleston, West Virginia. The school is dedicated to serving the diverse social and academic needs of its community in a contemporary urban setting. In 2007, Horace Mann Middle School was named a “West Virginia School of Excellence” by the West Virginia Department of Education.
[http://kcs.kana.k12.wv.us/horacemann/] Built in 1939 as a small elementary school, Horace Mann Middle School has seen many changes in the facility and the student population. The atmosphere and diversity of our community makes Horace Mann a unique and exciting environment for the students. With a minority population of thirty-five percent, and free and reduced lunch levels at nearly fifty percent, all students have daily opportunities for positive intrapersonal interactions. In the past, the school has traditionally served a population with a high socio-economic background. But, after school consolidation in 2000, the environment has become more diverse and enriching. The school now services all of the Kanawha City area and the eastern Charleston, West Virginia. On a daily basis, students come to the school from subsidized housing and million-dollar homes along the Kanawha River. It is a testament to the parents and the elementary schools in the area that the economic differences are accepted as the norm, and all students are respected.
Students who attend Horace Mann encounter a challenging academic environment that includes rigorous basic skills classes and an exciting range of electives and extracurricular activities. Since becoming a middle school in the 2000-2001 school year, Horace Mann was the first middle school in Kanawha County to expand its class offerings to include ninety minutes of language arts and mathematics instruction for students each day. Students who attend the school may participate in three different musical performance programs, fourteen sports programs and numerous clubs and learning organizations.
The entire physical plant of Horace Mann Middle School has been positively transformed since 2002 to create a “better and brighter “place for our students and community. The school has renovated, expanded and upgraded the cafeteria dining and food preparation areas. New tables and flooring are in the cafeteria which now serves as a daily eating facility and community commons area. The original restrooms from 1939 were replaced and the building has been equipped with modern lighting, heating and plumbing. The library and office complexes have been relocated from the second to first floor in closer proximity to the main entrance. Three new computer labs have been dedicated to serve the sixth, seventh and eight grades. The entry hallway and gym areas have received central heating, cooling and HVAC upgrades.
A new clinic has been built and the gymnasium has new public restrooms and a concession stand. The locker rooms have new paint, flooring and lockers. In the past four years, lighting and plumbing fixtures in the entire school have been replaced. The outside of the facility has been cleaned and painted, and the blacktop areas have been repaved and repainted. In addition, new fencing surrounds the playground and recreational areas.
Working with community organizations has also created additional facility improvements. In conjunction with the Kanawha City (WV) Little League, a new basketball scoreboard has been installed and a baseball backstop has been upgraded. Each year, students, teachers and parents come together to paint school hallways and walls. Through the efforts of the school’s Parent Teacher Organization, two illuminated signs are outside the facility to communicate school activities and announcements.
The music programs at the school are highly successful and provide an excellent learning experience for our students. The chorus has grown from six original members in 2000 to a performing group of more than sixty. The band has consistently received ratings of Excellence and eight students received First-Chair honors in the district from 2005-2007. The strings orchestra has been recognized as one of the top performance groups in the nation and the sixty-one cellists and violinists have performed for two governors in the past five years. Most importantly, all HMMS students receive an exposure to the arts and these students acquire a life-long love for music and continue their performances in several area high school and college organizations. Student-based organizations include student council, honor society, Natural Helpers, ski club, yearbook, and scrapbooking. [http://kcs.kana.k12.wv.us/horacemann/Music.htm]
Students at Horace Mann are expected to achieve not only in the academic and artistic pursuits, but athletically as well. The school sponsors fourteen sports groups including football, cheerleading, cross-country, volleyball, wrestling, golf, boys and girls soccer, basketball, tennis, and track. Students have won twenty-five athletic championships since becoming a middle school in 2000. Using the middle school concept of getting every child involved in a school activity, the school emphasizes student participation in a school sport.
"'Championships- Season or Tournament
• Conference Football Champions 2000, 2001 & 2004
• Girls’ Basketball Champions 2001, 2004 & 2005
• Boys’ Basketball Champions 2001, 2002, 2004, 2005 & 2007
• Girls Track Champions 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2006 & 2007
• Volleyball Tournament/Season Champions 2002, 2003, 2004, 2006& 2007
• Golf Champions 2004
• Tennis Champions 2006
• Boys Soccer Champions 2006"'
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