The Middle School Model and Successful Middle School Program
AMLE believes that the true middle school is one that has been planned and organized to address the developmental and cultural needs of students of ages 10 to 14, generally including grades 5-8. We articulate this middle school model through the publication of our landmark position paper, The Successful Middle School: This We Believe, now in its fifth edition.
This text, backed by forty years of research on education young adolescents, affirms that the following five essential attributes characterize the successful middle school:
Successful middle schools exhibit these essential attributes through a series of 18 Characteristics that are interdependent and grouped by three overarching categories:
How Can I Implement The Successful Middle School Program?
AMLE’s core mission as a non-profit membership association is to help schools actualize the successful middle school in their own communities. We work toward that mission through The Successful Middle School Program, a comprehensive set of tools and resources for educators, school, and districts.
Exploring the Text
Study the 5 essential attributes and 18 characteristics individually or as a team. Engage in a facilitated book study led by an AMLE coach, or lead your own book study with our book study guide and supplemental activities for members.
Driven by research-based exemplars, AMLE’s holistic school assessment helps gauge your implementation of middle grades best practices. Led by an AMLE coach, schools receive a comprehensive report that includes analysis, recommendations, and actionable next steps.
Engage in Meaningful Improvement
Engage AMLE’s expert faculty to design a professional development event/program that’s right for your school and receive ongoing coaching to help you make measurable change.
Recognizing and Celebrating the Successful Middle School in Action
AMLE Schools of Distinction is a recognition and continuous improvement program that is open to any school, anywhere in the world, that educates students aged 10-15. Schools are supported with AMLE resources and celebrated for their commitment to the best practices outlined in The Successful Middle School: This We Believe.
The Successful Middle School Program Over the Years
Now in its fifth edition, AMLE’s landmark position paper, The Successful Middle School: This We Believe is recognized as the best articulation of the middle school model. Since it was first published in 1982, middle school educators have relied on the text to build high-performing school communities using the 5 Essential Attributes and 18 Characteristics.
AMLE is founded as the National Middle School Association by leading luminaries of the middle school movement
First AMLE Annual Conference
AMLE’s first annual conference is held in Columbus, Ohio to share middle level education best practices
First Edition of This We Believe
This We Believe, AMLE’s landmark position paper, is first published and its 10 characteristics of successful middle grades schools quickly becomes recognized as the best articulation of the middle school model
This We Believe: Developmentally Responsive Middle Level Schools Published
1995: Publication of the 2nd edition, This We Believe: Developmentally Responsive Middle Level Schools, includes 12 characteristics
This We Believe: Successful Schools for Young Adolescents Published
Publication of the 3rd edition, This We Believe: Successful Schools for Young Adolescents, includes 16 characteristics
Fourth Edition of This We Believe: Keys to Educating Young Adolescents Published
Publication of the 4th edition, This We Believe: Keys to Educating Young Adolescents, includes 16 characteristics
The Successful Middle School: This We Believe Published
Publication of the 5th edition: The Successful Middle School: This We Believe, includes 18 characteristics and for the first time integrates both the contextual research and contributions from middle grades students
The Successful Middle School Online Course Series
The Successful Middle School Online Course Series launches as a benefit to AMLE members
The Successful Middle School Assessment
The Successful Middle School Assessment launches, providing schools with a 360-degree evaluative tool to baseline implementation of the 18 characteristics and provide an international data set on the middle school model in action
AMLE Schools of Distinction Program
AMLE Schools of Distinction program launches, recognizing and providing a continuous improvement roadmap for schools committed to middle grades best practice
Want more information about the middle school model or how to use the Successful Middle School Program in your school? Contact Katie Powell, AMLE Director for Middle Level Programs at firstname.lastname@example.org.