Walter T. Bergen Middle School
Frank Verducci, Principal
225 Glenwild Ave.
Bloomingdale, NJ 07403
Phone: (973) 838-4835
Fax: (973) 283-1893
The mission of the Walter T. Bergen Middle School is to provide a safe educational environment that endeavors to uphold expectations that inspire our students to take responsibility for their own learning in order to become productive, contributing members of our global society.
It is the school’s shared vision to provide our students with a challenging, standards-based curriculum that is partnered with high expectations to promote personal responsibility. The active involvement of all staff in maintaining an environment that provides the necessary academic, social and emotional support for each child’s individual success is at the core of our value system. We are a community of learners that strives to educate the “whole student” as we prepare our students for successful futures and celebrate individual growth and achievement.
The Child-Centered Middle School Concept
Research indicates that early adolescents are characterized by extremely short attention spans, rapidly changing interests, intense curiosity about themselves, the world around them, and their place in that world; a powerful need for group acceptance and a sense of belonging; and a compelling need for compliance to peer group norms. Early adolescents are also driven by a powerful desire to be successful, and to be perceived by others as "competent", and "as doers and producers". They also possess a strong need for group identity and belonging which satisfies their craving for success and recognition, and supports their curiosity by providing opportunities for exploration.
The early adolescent is best served by a child-centered, flexible approach to learning that is structured, but not rigid. Furthermore, the approach must be organized and must progress in a logical manner. It is imperative that the wide range of learning styles, needs, and unique characteristics of students is addressed.
The concept of "middle schools" or "middle grades education" is founded upon significant research in the field of child psychology and intellectual development, as well as educational pedagogy which holds that early adolescents are engaged in a very unique and distinct stage of cognitive and social development. The research holds that these young people, between the ages of 10 and 14 years, require a uniquely tailored educational environment and instructional approaches in order to maximize their academic success.