Hillcrest Middle School
Hillcrest Middle School first opened its doors in 1990 and continues to serve a relatively large portion of the city’s northwest Phoenix area. Currently, Hillcrest is home to well over 1,000 seventh and eighth grade students. Hillcrest is a professional community whose members are highly qualified, dedicated and committed to the needs of the whole child academically, socially, and emotionally. Our focus is on rigorous, engaging curriculum utilizing Arizona College and Career Readiness Standards that promote active learning marked by inquiry, critical thinking, and collaboration in an environment especially designed to meet the unique needs of the middle school student. Our strategic imperative is to equip all students with 21st century knowledge and skills accompanied by the self-efficacy to confidently transition to high school, college, and beyond. Hillcrest is proud to offer a particularly wide array of curricular opportunities and supports for its student body simulating a “mini high school” in terms of opportunity, while in the supportive environment of a middle school setting. To this end, Hillcrest continues to house student teams through which teachers can assist and advocate for students which they share in common and know specifically. Each team shares the same four content area teachers with a common preparation period which is frequently used to dialogue and identify research-based strategies with which to support their students based on the achievement trends that they all observe. In addition, each team has a team leader who coordinates communication with parent stakeholders and also spearheads extra-curricular efforts to build team spirit and exemplify desired pillars of character, particularly important in these vital years of transition. Hillcrest staff, students, and parents are clearly engaged, empowered, and carry a clear voice in the direction of the school. Each stakeholder group is invited to participate in on-going communication forums to gather feedback and engage in two-way dialogue regarding the continuous improvement of all campus programs. Hillcrest’s goal-setting process excels because of the involvement of a staff of over 60 members who work cooperatively with students and their parents. Cooperative efforts between the school and the community are valued. Communication and collaboration nurtures a culture of genuine partnership between the school and the community it serves. Our Continuous Improvement Team is comprised of administrators, staff, students and community members, and it is the central focus for major decisions regarding all facets of student achievement, curriculum and budget. The school has strong community support and is continuing to build this valued partnership through the work of its Community Outreach and Celebrations Committee.