Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Education (MSEd)


Education and Human Development

First Advisor

Dr. Betsy Ann Balzano


The purpose of this study was to develop the characteristics of the non-traditional middle school programs in the Rochester area. Three programs were investigated, then compared to the literature for similarities. The programs were also compared to each other for similarities and differences.

Student, parent, teacher, and administrator surveys were conducted at all three programs. A considerable amount of data was collected. Students were asked: why were they in the program, what and how did they learn, their favorite way of learning and what would they like to learn more about. Parents were asked: why is your child in the program; what skills should students learn in school and how are students graded. Teacher were asked: how they became involved in the program, how do they assess students and what did their curriculum consists of. Administrators were interviewed and gave the history and an overview of their program. All surveys asked each person's feelings about their school's program.

Two of the three schools fit both models and improvements called for in the literature. The third school is also making many of the improvements called for in the literature. All of the programs investigated have strengths, and are models of an improved traditional educational system.