Students in grades 5 through 8 are taught in single-grade groupings. Core classes are Math, Language Arts, Social Studies, and Science. P.E., Spanish, and a variety of elective choices round out the schedule. Middle-school students also meet weekly in multi-grade committees, where they have the opportunity to become leaders and effect change in the school and broader community.
Examples of middle-school projects include writing original fantasy and suspense stories in 5th grade, a multidisciplinary Green Architecture Project in 6th grade, a 7th-grade study of communities in early American history, and a Moral Courage Project in 8th grade.Interviews, guest speakers, and field trips help students forge relationships with local experts from NASA, the University of Maryland, the federal government, and non-government organizations, minimizing the line between school and the real world.
FCS middle-schoolers start and end each day with their advisories, where the emphasis is on consensus-building, conflict resolution, and choice to enable students to move through our multifaceted curriculum with both the academic and social-emotional skills they need to thrive. Measurable community skills help students see how their work habits influence their learning.
FCS graduates are accepted to and well-prepared for leading area high schools, including competitive public magnet programs, independent schools, and Catholic high schools (that award academic scholarships to many FCS graduates). More than 95% of FCS graduates are offered admission at their first- or second-choice high school.