Cool School: Fort Middle School Service Learning Magnet Academy - Alabamas13.com WVTM-TV Birmingham, AL

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Cool School: Fort Middle School Service Learning Magnet Academy

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At Fort Middle School Service Learning Magnet Academy, it's not enough to get good grades, you also need to commit yourself to serving others.

Assistant Principal Katrina Collier said that, "We do great things. We tie our curriculum to the community. Our students are abreast with what's going on in our community and therefore their vested in how we can make a difference and make positive changes."

From organizing canned food drives to talking to other children about what they learn in middle school, the students learn how they can best serve the community.

Magnet Coordinator Mary Godfrey said, "Each student surveys a hundred people and then they come up with their data to find out what the community needs are and then they begin creating projects to address those needs."

There are more than two hundred students in the magnet program. It's the only one of its kind in the state.

"It's like a good feeling to know that you are helping other people in the community and just donating stuff," said Trinity Mintze.

Besides its magnet program, Fort Middle School has teachers that do what it takes in order for their students to succeed. Ninety-nine percent of Vanessa Lewis's students passed the CRCT last year.

Vanessa Lewis said, "My teaching style is really oriented towards my kids. I have a student focus classroom. Hands on and engaging. Whatever my students are interested in, I try to get into their interests and what they like to do and design my lessons around that."

Students also get extra help for their upcoming writing tests. The students learn what they need to know to make sure they pass.

Student Kaylee Crayton said, "We are learning the basics about writing and stuff."

Teachers say the test is an important part of the academic career for middle schoolers. Teacher Jonai Senor said, "The state of Georgia has to see that their ready and able to do this task of writing an essay and if they can't do it, then it can be problematic for them so we're making sure that all of our 8th graders have the opportunity to go on to the 9th grade."

Assistant Principal Katrina Collier says that the magnet program and other school initiatives will help the students stand out when they go to high school.

She said, "When they get there, you'll see and you'll know they came from the best middle school in the world."

Deidre Johnson

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Deidre Johnson co-anchors News 3 This Morning and reports for News 3 Midday. More>>

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