FROM OUR HEAD OF SCHOOL
Welcome to Billings Middle School, a dynamic, co-educational academic community intentionally designed to stretch, support and inspire early adolescent learners.
When you first step onto the Billings campus, I hope you’ll see immediately that there is something very special happening here. Here you’ll find a warm and welcoming community, with teachers who believe in the great potential of adolescent learning. You’ll find teachers who specialize in the adolescent learner, who know the unique talents and challenges of each of their students, and who meet each learner where they are and help them find their own paths. You’ll find a family, where it’s safe enough to take risks and to shine in your own individual talents.
Here you’ll find innovative teaching and learning, that reaches far beyond the walls of our classroom. You’ll find an urban school, deeply rooted in the Green Lake community. You’ll find our students are a part of our neighborhood, partnering with local businesses, participating in physical education and athletics in Green Lake Park and the Community Center, utilizing the Seattle Public Library, and enjoying performances at the Seattle Public Theatre at the Bathhouse. You’ll find student performers, artists, writers, and thinkers.
Here you’ll find a unique expeditionary approach to learning, one that integrates outdoor experiences with classroom practices to create a mindset of integrated, experiential learning. We believe that adolescents learn their place in the world by being out in the world. You’ll find our students exploring alongside their teachers, both in and out of the classroom, challenging themselves, supporting each other, and problem solving in authentic ways. You’ll find students engaged in active inquiry – asking and answering their own questions about the world around them.
Here you’ll see the value we place on stewardship, on celebrating our diversity, and on social justice. You’ll see students every day engaged in community service, working towards new models of environmental sustainability, and engaged in conversations about power and privilege. Billings students are preparing every day to be responsible and engaged global citizens.
Many schools, and particularly independent schools, talk about whole child education. But never have I seen the notion of educating the whole child more sincerely put into practice than at Billings Middle School. Especially at an age where education is about so much more than content, Billings addresses the social, emotional, and developmental needs of all its students. Seeing the child, knowing them, and adapting to reach each one is not a goal at Billings, but a firm expectation.
“It’s not the destination, but the journey that counts.” Our focus at Billings is not on preparing our students for what will come next, but rather for optimizing this critical time in their development. Our students routinely are accepted at outstanding high schools, both public and private. But it is the emphasis that Billings places on the middle school journey that makes your time here special. Billings students leave middle school prepared for the rigors of high school academics, self-assured and articulate, proud of their unique gifts, and able to advocate for their own learning needs.
Middle school can be a wild roller coaster –we’re already buckled in! Won’t you come along for the ride?
Anne-Evan K. Williams, PhD
Head of School