Courtesy of Darlene Dingess-Adkins Garren Staten, Man Middle School 7th grade English/Language Arts teacher, is pictured in the classroom with some of his students. The school was named an ICLE 2019 Model School after its heavy focus on literacy.

MAN - The International Center for Leadership in Education (ICLE) has named Man Middle School a 2019 Model School for making "rapid and significant improvements in student outcomes," according to a news release.

Man Middle is one of 18 Model Schools across the United States that will share its transformational journey and best practices at ICLE's 27th annual Model Schools Conference in Washington, D.C., from June 23-26. The event provides a forum for thousands of educators and leaders to share their innovative ideas and best practices for developing future-focused classrooms.

The designation is selected annually based on a number of criteria such as substantive, data-validated growth year after year, evidence of a strong culture that puts students at the center of learning and dedication to transforming instruction to meet the needs and demands of the future.

According to the release, Man Middle was able to create a collaborative culture of learning that is reflected in both staff and students by implementing a schoolwide literacy initiative to boost student achievement. Planning and strategies have positively impacted student success in areas of achievement, discipline and attendance.

Leadership teams at the school have created a platform where teachers teach one another using mini-professional development sessions once a week. Thanks to all this effort, the school's culture has improved by forming personal relationships among staff and students. With the focus on literacy, MMS students have improved their communication skills in writing, reading, speaking and reasoning, which "spills over into every content area," the release said.

"Model Schools are focused on what matters most: the students," said Bill Daggett, founder and chairman of the ICLE. "We commend the 2019 Model Schools for prioritizing the creation of a supportive, systemwide culture of high expectations that is felt by teachers, leaders, students, parents and the greater community."

"The staff members at Man Middle School are committed and focused on clearly defined student achievement goals," said Logan County Schools Superintendent Patricia Lucas. "They have a conviction that high standards can help all students excel and a willingness to embrace innovative ideas. They utilize best practices and have a strong urgency to improve opportunities for all youth, no matter what the circumstances."

To learn more about the 27th annual Model Schools Conference this June, visit www.modelschoolsconference.com.