Hello Parents and Caregivers,

West Middle School opened its doors to 655 students in August of 1966. It was then, as it is now, a community center with a picture-perfect view of the Front Range. Our enrollment today includes 1,300 adolescent wonders in 6th, 7th and 8th grades.

Sometimes I head out to our football field to look to those mountains and imagine I am the principal back in a simpler 1966, not in the complex times of 2018-19. Sometimes I am afraid of the world our students are growing up in and I worry for their stresses. I worry about how this committed community of teachers and staff will prepare our charges to face all that is ahead of them.

Then I walk back inside, through the hallways, and poke my head into classrooms, where kids are learning, squirming, giggling, talking, sharing, and shining. My sixth graders still seem so little, impatient for snack time but eager to tackle new things – like 50 year old temperamental lockers. My 7th graders are in the middle of middle school – growing exponentially each day in inches and in brain cells and in a wider appreciation of a world beyond their immediate surroundings. Then there are my 8th grade students. They are giants, physically and in their personalities, quick to point out that they are almost to high school, yet slow to remember what it really means to leave this safe nest sooner than we can all blink.

All of my students have one thing in common: they can tell you our school C.A.R.E. motto by heart. At WMS, we practice Citizenship, Achievement, Respect and Equity. They know that the hate and violence we see in our world have no place in our school or anywhere else. We pledge, all adults and students in this school, that we will speak up when we see things or hear things that don't seem right. Our mission statement echoes this deep commitment: By design, we are excellence and opportunity, support and collaboration, sincerity and inspiration. We will learn together, grow together, become closer to who we are each meant to be and along the way – have some fun together.

Please join us on this journey. You are invited to come in, sit down and be with us. Attend our events, volunteer, participate and communicate with the team at your school. West belongs to all of us. The door is always open – though you may find me on the west side porch, looking out at the mountains and dreaming of what my students will become.