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Enterprise Middle School recipient of the 2018 Whole Child Award

Washington State ASCD has announced Enterprise Middle School in Richland, Washington, as the recipient of their 2018 Whole Child Award. The Whole Child Award is intended to acknowledge and honor a school that has made significant contributions to student learning by creating a school culture with programs that exemplify two or more of the five tenets of The Whole Child Initiative: Healthy, Safe, Engaged, Supported, and Challenged; as well as serve as models for all educators across the state. Enterprise Middle School will receive their award this spring, along with $500 sponsored by SHAPE Washington.  Read on to learn the mission at Enterprise Middle School and their journey to creating a culture of caring and community.

The mission at Enterprise Middle School (EMS) is to cultivate an environment where students are creative and innovative, think critically and solve problems, communicate and collaborate with one another in order to be compassionate, contributing citizens in our world.

Enterprise Middle School has created a culture of excellence by intentionally focusing on the Whole Child.  Their Whole Child work centers around advisory and leadership components which has elevated their school to next-level special.  While they have delivered college & career lessons, academic lessons, and social emotional learning (SEL) for the past 8 years, their school has begun to transition from good to great with the replacement of the previous SEL curriculum. After research and reflection on practices, they adopted the CharacterStrong curriculum for advisory classes.   

Enterprise Middle School has rebranded their culture as “Wildcat Nation.”  Wildcat Nation is a shared belief that the EMS community wants a safe and supportive school where everyone feels welcome, valued, and ready to learn.  The school-wide theme of “What Will You Do For Others Today?” is woven into the fabric of the school by asking this question daily, often hourly.  Their program has become so popular that educators in other regions are taking notice and visiting their school. 

Through both formal and informal Whole Child training, Enterprise Middle School has prepared school personnel.  Furthermore, parents and community members have been wrapped into the culture through events such as their Veteran’s Day Assembly, Community Strong, Donuts with Dads and College & Career Day.  EMS has also shared their vision through social media platforms. Check them out on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, Remind, and Counseling Center Website.  By creating clear communication and transparency between school and home, EMS parents are in a great position to reinforce the character development occurring at their child’s school.

Enterprise Middle School staff engaged in a school-wide in-service activity which helped identify students’ names and faces, academic standing, and connection to school.  Students who are less connected to school are then presented with opportunities to help design clubs and activities, personally invited to school events, and intentionally sought after by staff members to connect them through their advisory classes.      

Enterprise Middle School has created a community where everyone belongs.  Through a shared vision of academic purpose, EMS students and staff agree that Wildcat Nation is a place all people want to be.  In a recent survey, 100% of staff had seen increased kindness.  This can be seen in real data like this year’s 76% realized drop in overall discipline referrals with an average monthly drop of 26% (when taking into account a drop in student enrollment due to an additional middle school being built in their community).  In fact, despite a 12% increase in free and reduced numbers this year, their attendance rates have held constant at approximately 94%.  This goes to show relationships are positively impacting student learning at EMS.  Here’s a recent blog post from an EMS ELA teacher on the power of “Making Time for the Whole Child” on her students’ MAP scores.  

This year Enterprise Middle School rolled out PBIS Rewards, updated their PBIS school-wide behavior matrix, and a brand-new Wildcat Cash Shop.  Evidence of their PBIS improvements were also established through a recent School-Wide Evaluation Tool (SET) with a total score of 98%.  By matching technology with extrinsic and intrinsic rewards, teachers are able to further motivate students to create a healthy, successful learning environment.  

Enterprise Middle School also partners with SARC (Support Advocacy & Resource Center) and the Benton Franklin Health District to teach internet safety, sexual harassment education, youth suicide prevention, and vaping prevention within their health classes to help support students’ safety and wellbeing.  

It is no wonder that Washington State ASCD is proud to recognize Enterprise Middle School as the 2018 recipient of the Whole Child Award as they have created a culture of caring and community by intentionally focusing on the Whole Child.  Congratulations Enterprise Middle School!

Founded in 1956, as Washington State Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, now known as Washington State ASCD, is a community of all educators committed to promoting promising practices to ensure ALL students are safe, healthy, engaged, supported and challenged.  For additional information, please contact Executive Coordinator, Carrie Lam.