All About Lange Middle School
- 7:00 doors open and students arrive
- 7:25 school day begins
- 2:35 end of school
- 4:10 (M-Th) Activity Bus departs for students with after-school activities
Lange Middle School is a place where we lead with character; we learn with pride; and together we achieve success!
Our vision for Lange Middle School is that all who enter its doors will be treated with respect and dignity; that every student be provided an equitable, meaningful, supportive, and safe environment to achieve at high levels; that families, school, and community will form mutually beneficial partnerships; and that staff will be recognized as dedicated educators preparing students for successful adult lives.
Lange Middle School opened in August 1997. At that time, we had 6th and 7th grades only. In 2012, we added 8th-grade students, at the same time that Columbia Public Schools opened Battle High School. In August of 2022, Mr. Dominique Falls took the helm as principal of Lange Middle School. Prior to that, Mr. Falls was a classroom teacher and athletic director at Lange from 2011-2019, and assistant principal at Jefferson City High School from 2019-2021.
Lange Middle School is named in honor of John B. Lange, Sr. He was a prominent black businessman who came to Columbia way back in 1850. John B. Lange worked with other black Columbians to establish the Cummings Academy, a school for black students which began in Lange’s own home. The Cummings Academy eventually became Frederick Douglass School.
Lange Middle School is focused on helping students entrusted to our care discover their talents as unique individuals. Our mission statement states that Lange Middle School is a place where we lead with character, we learn with pride, and together we achieve success. As a middle school community of learners we feel it is important to understand the needs of today’s adolescent child and then do whatever it takes to meet those needs. We are truly committed to doing our daily work through an unwavering partnership together with teachers, students, families, support staff, and administrators.
Our commitment to the academic success of all students is evident through our focus on AVID (Advancement via Individual Determination), a program designed to increase academic awareness and college and career readiness. Each classroom teacher, core and elective, is committed to using rigorous and challenging strategies that yield high academic results. Although some students may not fully understand the need for the high academic goals we have set for them, we believe that we have an obligation to do what’s best for them regardless of their reluctance.
Finally, we also place a strong emphasis on positive school behavior. The Lange PBIS (Positive Behavior Intervention Supports) Team works with students and staff to ensure there is a positive and safe school climate. We spend a great deal of time focusing on teaching our students the “Lange Way” by teaching specifically designed lessons. We also acknowledge and celebrate with students and staff when those expectations are met. This has proven to be most effective in creating a very pleasant learning environment. It’s a great time to be a LANGE LEOPARD!
At Lange Middle School we value having a diverse group of learners. Our population is 45.4% white and 54.6% combined minority groups. This gives us many opportunities to learn and grow together by blending various beliefs to make a common set of values that we all respect and practice. Lange teachers and support staff show a great deal of care and concern for our students. We believe our staff is unmatched in the level of love and support we show with our students. It is very difficult to find a more caring family than our Lange family.
Programmatically, our PBIS and AVID initiatives have helped us to see positive results from our students both behaviorally and academically. Our PBIS projects include focused lessons, positive praise, goal setting, and celebrations. AVID has helped us create a college and career focus among our students and staff. Many of our students can articulate their future college and career aspirations and it is primarily due to their exposure to AVID.
We have made significant progress in our efforts to provide a systematic intervention program to help students who have significant behavior and academic challenges. According to data from iReady, the CPS district assessment and progress-monitoring tool, last year only 6% of our students began the school year reading at the expected level for their grade. Through a combination of intervention and enrichment strategies, our scholars went on to show an overall 143% growth in reading levels across the entire school. The impact on the most at-risk students was even more significant. We began the year with 60% of our students reading 3 or more grade levels behind, and by the end of the school year, that had improved to only 48% of students who were 3+ levels behind.
[Instead of using a patchwork approach, we have created the foundation for a more routine process to help students improve their behavior and academic outcomes. Although we are not where we want to be with our intervention work, we feel we are well on our way to having the tools we need to meet the needs of all our diverse learners.]
Areas for Growth
We believe schools have a primary purpose of helping all students achieve academic success. Our academic results, as measured by the state assessment, have not been where we know they can be. We have seen our achievement primarily remain level for quite a few years. This has led us to a new sense of determination. Our motto for this year is “It's time to shine!” More specifically, this means that each of us has potential, and it’s time for us to refocus and direct our attention, efforts, and resources to the academic results of our students. We believe that it's time for Lange Middle School to shine our light and show the world that we are the best middle school in the district!
Our vision for Lange Middle School is that all who enter its doors will be treated with respect and dignity, that every student will be given the opportunity and support to achieve at high levels in a safe environment, that families, school, and community will form mutually beneficial partnerships, and that the staff will be recognized as dedicated educators preparing students for successful adult lives. We believe our vision’s focus on all students achieving at high levels aligns with Columbia Public Schools’ vision to be the best district in the state.