MCPSS Magnet Schools are open-zoned schools. Open-zoned schools do not have a designated attendance area for students, but instead, encompasses the entire MCPSS attendance area. To determine which students should be able to attend our selection schools, students are chosen based on an application and lottery process and are required to meet entrance criteria.
MCPSS Magnet Schools are built on the foundation of the five pillars of diversity, innovative curriculum and professional development, academic excellence, high quality instructional systems, and family and community partnerships. Our choice schools embody the belief that highly motivated and academically focused students have interests and talents that are better cultivated in a magnet school program. Our magnet schools have focused themes and aligned curricula in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM), Fine and Performing Arts, and International Baccalaureate.
Diversity is an important element of a magnet school. Students from a wide array of cultures and backgrounds, including special education students and English language learners, attend our magnet schools. Thus, students are exposed to different ways of thinking and develop a stronger sense of tolerance and a broader world view. Magnet schools make the extra effort to create a sense of classroom and school community and to cultivate school spirit.
The curriculum, and the professional development that supports it, promotes higher level cognitive thinking and uses a “hands on–minds on” approach to learning that is inquiry or performance/project based. The magnet schools use state and district standards in all subject areas, however, they are taught within the overall theme of the school. The curriculum is also clear and transparent for families so they can fully engage in the learning of their students.
Magnet schools are designed for academic excellence. The curriculum and grading scales are modified from a regular program. Each grade level is accelerated and, due to the theme focus or each school, require students to carry a heavier academic load than non-magnet schools. The grading scale in our magnet programs includes grades A, B, C, and E with all averages below a 70 resulting in a failing grade by magnet standards. We use a computer-based lottery system for selection, and students must meet set entrance criteria.
For more information about our magnet schools program, call 251-221-4039 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.