Rachel Carson Middle School is named after a prominent author and environmentalist who embraced the sense of wonder. She is quoted as saying, "If a child is to keep alive his inborn sense of wonder, he needs the companionship of at least one adult who can share it, rediscovering with him the joy, excitement, and mystery of the world we live in." Carson Middle School embraces the sense of wonder and encourages student discovery in all aspects of their learning and their lives. Rachel Carson staff takes pride in its service to children, parents and the community. Our Student Services department and school counselors work to support the social and emotional needs of all students. Through curricular and extracurricular opportunities, students have opportunities to understand and practice the merits of care for the environment. Since its opening in 1989, Rachel Carson Middle School has been recognized by numerous organizations, including The Virginia Middle School Association and the Forum to Accelerate Middle Grades Reform as a "School to Watch." RCMS was re-designated as a School To Watch for the fourth time in June 2017. In addition, Rachel Carson has also received the Governor's Award for Educational Excellence and Virginia Board of Education Excellence Award. In June 2017, for its work with promoting environmental stewardship, RCMS earned the Green Flag Eco School designation from the National Wildlife Federation.
Rachel Carson has a multitude of programs that cater to a wide range of student needs. The school provides general education, advanced academic placement, and honors programs in the four core subject areas. Math offerings include Math 7, Math 8, Math 7 Honors, Algebra, Algebra 1 Honors, Geometry Honors and Algebra II. Also offered are a wide variety of world languages for high school credit. Our school's special education program includes a full continuum of services to meet the needs of all students. Our ESOL program supports beginning and developing language learners.
Throughout the past and present, the Vision in Progress articulates the innovative learning environment that the school strives to achieve. This vision focuses on students using 21st century skills (creativity, collaboration, critical thinking, and communication) while engaging in authentic learning experiences. Furthermore, this vision emphasizes students interacting in a safe and respectful community. Strategies and activities such as interdisciplinary teams, project based learning, individual goal setting, and a blended approach to use of instructional technology help to bring this vision to life. The school offers a robust after school program. Students take part in academic supports, STEAM-related offerings, athletics, and clubs that cater to student-specific interests.