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Making a difference in the Middle!!!
Posted On:
Monday, August 27, 2018

We extend a warm welcome to all our Shelby Middle School students and their families as we start a new school year!  The aim of the middle school is to provide opportunities for students to grow academically, emotionally, physically, and socially as they prepare for high school and life beyond.  We are continually trying to find the right combination of supports that will help provide the best middle school experience for your student.

Academic Growth

There are some adjustments in who will be teaching what to your student this school year.

  • Mr. Wade Sikkema will be moving away from science instruction and teaching more sections of physical education.  Mr. Sikkema will also be providing academic and behavioral coaching to students who need additional support in these areas.

  • Mr. Brett Mikkelson will be teaching 8th grade early American History and a current events elective.  Mr. Mikkelson comes to the middle school after many years of instruction at the 5th grade level. Mr. Mikkelson has been working hard to prepare for this new school year and looks forward to having many former students in class once again.   

  • Mr. Chris Rapes will be teaching 7th grade science at the middle school this year.  Mr. Rapes comes to Shelby after teaching four years at Big Rapids High School. Mr. Rapes is looking forward to coaching basketball and many other opportunities to get to know the students of Shelby Middle School.

Other programs continue to offer expanded academic opportunities.

  • Mrs.Debbie Wall and Mrs. Sara White will teach AARI classes that stress the development of strategies that help students with necessary literacy skills.  The Accelerated Adolescent Reading Initiative (AARI) program will be offered and continue to increase the ability of our students to comprehend what they read.  If you have questions about your student qualifying for this important support program, please call the middle school office at 231-861-4521.

  • Advanced level math classes are available at the 6th and 7th grade levels, designed to cover the 6th-8th grade math curriculum in two school years.  Students who have participated in the advanced classes through their middle school career will have the chance to take Algebra I during their 8th grade year for high school credit.  This accelerates the students planned math classes for high school with the expectation that they will complete the highest level of math courses offered. While this math opportunity may not be for every student, it does provide students who have exhibited higher math skills and personal academic responsibility an advanced curricular opportunity. Contact Laura Sly at 231-861-4521 should you have questions regarding math program and placement for your student.

  • Shelby Middle School is piloting a new program called IXL that identifies academic areas that are challenging for students.  Students then work within the IXL program to improve their skills in these identified areas of challenge. The two areas IXL can assist students are math and language arts.  Look for information to come home to you regarding this program should your student qualify to participate. Please call the middle school office at 231-861-4521 for more information if you would like to see your student participate in this learning opportunity.

  • Shelby Middle School is once again offering classes taught by select high school teaching staff to further diversify educational opportunities available to your student.  Mr. Jairo Coronado will be teaching Spanish I that could earn your 8th grade student high school credit. Mrs. Katie Stifler will continue to teach art to 7th and 8th grade students.  Mrs. Jeanne Furman will instruct all 7th grade students in the necessary health and wellness topics for that grade level. Mr. Isakson and Mr. Emelander will continue to provide students opportunities to develop their musical talents in band and choir respectively.  Mr. Tom Weirich will be re-opening the wood shop to provide industrial art learning opportunities for our 7th and 8th grade students as well. Please contact Mrs. Laura Sly at 861-4521 to explore having these opportunities be part of your student’s learning experience.


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