King Middle School in Portland Maine serves the most racially, ethnically, culturally, and economically diverse neighborhood in the state of Maine. More than 120 of King’s approximately 500 students speak 28 languages and come from 17 countries. For several years the school struggled to try to meet the educational needs of its students with little success. Then in 1988 the new principal, Mike McCarthy, introduced the idea of the Expeditionary Learning Outward Bound model. Initially there were many challenges, but over time it took off and the results in student achievement propelled the initiative.
Today “King Middle School is dedicated to the idea that we can create a school where all kids succeed at a high level. Our school wide model isExpeditionary Learning. Our students engage in eight to twelve week experiential learning expeditions. These expeditions are in-depth and interdisciplinary in nature and require students to engage in sophisticated research, use the community in authentic ways, and represent their knowledge with high quality products which are presented to legitimate audiences.”
Educators throughout Maine and the rest of the United States have visited King Middle School and been inspired by the school’s model of success. To learn more about Expeditionary Learning, Google King Middle School, Portland Maine. You’ll find an excellent website, easy to explore. You can also view and download a detailed outline of King MS’s successful implementation of Expeditionary Learning.