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New Paltz Schools Guide: New Paltz Middle School

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New Paltz Middle School/Daniel Case

New Paltz Middle School serves students in grades 6 through 8 in the New Paltz Central School District. The building is the oldest in the district, and its location and condition have been subjects of debate since before it was constructed. Testing under the No Child Left Behind Act intensifies, with at least two standardized tests per year.

School Basics

New Paltz, New York [map]
845/256-4200
http://www.newpaltz.k12.ny.us/middleschool/site/default.asp
District: New Paltz Central School District
Principal: Dr. Richard Wiesenthal, RWiesenthal@newpaltz.k12.ny.us
Nurse: 256-4210
Guidance: 256-4220
Closures and alerts: 

New Paltz Middle School had 502 students enrolled in the 2007-8 school year according to the New York State District Report Card. Class size averages for eighth grade ranged from 15 to 21 students, with English having the least, social studies average 20 students, and both science and math classes averaging 21 students. In the 2006-7 school year, the entire district had a 96% attendance rate, and a total 5% of the students were suspended out of school for one day or more.

Students are tested in grades 6, 7 and 8 against the New York State standards for English Language Arts (ELA), in grades 6, 7 and 8 for mathematics, and in grade 8 for science. The Level 3 standard, defined as, “Student performance demonstrates an understanding of the content expected in the subject and grade level,” is the benchmark. The percentage of Middle School students who achieved these standards went up for all grade levels and subject areas with the exception of grade 8 ELA, which saw a drop to 61% of tested students meeting the standard, 9% lower than the previous year's rate.

Significant increases in scores included the grade 8 mathematics assessment, rising 26 points to 86%, and grade 6 ELA, increasing 10 points to 80%. Other than the English scores for eighth graders, the percentage of students achieving the Level 3 standard ranged from 79 to 89%.

# of Teachers: 51
# of Students: 502
Demographics: 4% Asian, 8% Hispanic, 8% black, 79% white

The Middle School building began its life as the New Paltz High School, and before it was built a number of possible locations were proposed (including the recently-donated Hasbrouck Park) before the present parcel was donated by the New Paltz Lumber Company. The building was constructed in the 1930s, with two additions made since, and has been found deficient in a number of areas. A 2010 bond proposal to make significant renovations to the existing building failed at the polls, and the Board of Education is currently studying its options.

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