Located in the heart of downtown, H.B.W. Middle School sits prominently in Verona’s historic Civic Center. The building, a mix of old and new architecture complete with state-of-the-art science labs and Media Center, symbolizes the long tradition of educational excellence in Verona combined with a never-ending focus on the future and how it will impact our children socially, emotionally, and educationally.
The Mission of the Verona Public Schools, the center of an engaged and supportive community, is, in partnership with a supportive community, we inspire our students to be creative, critical thinkers and compassionate global citizens through dynamic teaching, meaningful curricula, and enriching experiences. With that in mind, teachers and staff have created a culture of learning that promotes discovery and achievement and connections to the “real” world. These core and special academic programs for grades 5-8 provide opportunities for our students to flourish in an intellectually stimulating environment.
The 2019-2020 school year marks the fifth year of the house model structure at HBW, with the goal of providing smaller and more personalized learning communities for our students. The house model structure provides frequent opportunities for grade level team members to effectively identify students in need of further academic, social, or emotional support and respond by designing and implementing appropriate interventions. Additionally, grade level teams are committed to developing partnerships between the school and home through frequent individual and grade level-specific communication.
World language classes offered in Mandarin, Spanish, or French emphasize culture and oral language development. Cycle classes offer students the opportunity to take mini courses in oceanography, civics, music, coding, technology, engineering and design (TED), anthropology and art to name a few. In eighth grade, students can sign up to participate in National History Day and Future Cities competitions. Science and math classes at all levels promote inquiry and problem solving. For accelerated students, advanced language arts, and geometry, and algebra are offered in seventh and eighth grades.
H.B.W. Middle School provides many opportunities for students to take curriculum-based field trips, like our environmental and team building trip for fifth graders, our sixth grade trip to the Museum of Natural History in New York City, our science-based trip for 7th grade to Sandy Hook, NJ, and our 8th grade visit class visit to the Museum of Jewish Heritage. Other extra-curricular events include assemblies, visits to our local museums and restaurants, visits from parents and community members with particular specialties or stories to discuss, and participation in cooperative activities and contests, like Battle of the Books and Academically Speaking.
Our students have the opportunity to pick from over twenty clubs to join. Some of them focus on the following: intramurals, service, art, cooking, Chinese culture, and environmental issues. Our visual and performing artists can opt for the drawing club or perform in the spring musical. Our young writers and photographers work on filling the pages of the yearbook and literary magazine. Students in H.B.W. bands and choruses consistently receive superior evaluations in regional competitions and on average, four to five musicians and singers are accepted into regional honors groups annually.
Students receive academic, social, and emotional support not only from their teachers, but through a comprehensive, developmental Guidance Program. They take advisory classes with their guidance counselor in 5th and 6th grade. Students are encouraged to accept and assist one another through participation in Student Council and numerous service projects. The H.B.W. community is particularly well known for its generosity and commitment to giving back to the community. H.B.W. students have raised over $500,000 over the past thirteen years for the American Heart Association during the Jump Rope for Heart campaign, including raking 1st in the state for the amount of money raised during the 2013-2014 school year.
H.B.W. is able to be successful in educating our children because of the supportive community of Verona and a very strong School/Community Association. Both complement H.B.W.’s efforts to provide challenging, supportive, and relevant experiences for our middle-schoolers.