Rachel Carson: From 1998 to 2018

Students wait outside the school waiting for the doors to open. Nov. 30

Photo courtesy of Shriya Muthukumar

Students wait outside the school waiting for the doors to open. Nov. 30

Sophia Yao, Shriya Muthukumar, and Mai Lim

Since the opening of Rachel Carson Middle School in 1998, the school has adopted many new principles and standards for many different reasons. When Rachel Carson first opened, there were different guidelines regarding the learning process. An example is that they now teach using Portrait of a Graduate to help students prepare for life after they finish their schooling. Now the school has been open for 20 years, and through the evolution of it came the changes that you see today.

The students are now working harder than ever, and there is more technological influence than ever before. The technological influence is both good and bad. Having technology gives you more choice to do things, but they also distract you. However, these are only changes that people experience for one or two years before heading off to high school, and it has been like this ever since Rachel Carson opened in 1998. In order to get a better idea of of how this school changes, we decided to ask some teachers about how they think the school has changed over the time they have been here.

One major change was technology. According to all the teachers we interviewed — Mr. Moosa Shah, Ms. Barbara Poole, and Ms. Megan Carr — the school’s reliance on technology has increased greatly and it has also influenced their teaching style.

Another major change is the size of the school, perhaps the most noticeable change is the increase of students at this school.The building started small with only about 600 students and only six teams, but now there is double that amount with about 1200 students and 12 teams. The trailers were also a recent addition to the school.

A recent change that was made was block schedule. This change in particular affect students a lot. All the teachers we interviewed said that they liked block schedule.

“Block schedule gave me freedom to do more fun things,” said Ms. Poole. To her, 45 minutes went by very fast.

Another change that would also end up affecting students a lot would be the change of teaching style. A major thing that has changed is the Portrait of a Graduate. Portrait of a Graduate is something that was introduced to help students. It focuses on getting students to collaborate, communicate, be an ethical and global citizen, be a creative and critical thinker and being a goal-directed and resilient individual. These are vital in becoming successful citizens in life. She also mentioned that when the principles changed, so did her teaching style.

Even through all these years, some things have stayed the same. Something Ms. Poole believes stayed the same the custodians were always very good at helping to keep the school clean.

RCMS is a school with 20 years of history behind it. With that past comes the changes that make it the school that you see today. Some of these changes are physical, like the expansion of the building, or the addition of trailers. Some of these are in the amount of people that are here, such as the increase of teams, teachers, and students. This change has been witnessed by tens of thousands of people, and will continue to for years to come.