Editor’s note: A scheduling snafu kept this article on the last of the Desert Sands Unified School District middle schools from its place in the summer rotation. Here is a look at Palm Desert Charter Middle School.

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Palm Desert Charter Middle School is home to 1400 6th, 7th, and 8th grade students. Our main goal is to provide students with the best possible learning opportunity. PDCMS students and their families share in our success because of our outstanding teachers and staff who dedicate themselves every day to providing our students with academic challenges, character building activities, and personal growth experiences in a positive school environment.

As a charter school, we have a dedicated Charter School Governing Council that oversees our academic and financial goals. We also have our own LCAP (Local Control and Accountability Program) that includes the following three goals: 1) all students will demonstrate growth measured by federal, state, Desert Sands Unified School District, and Palm Desert Charter Middle School assessments; 2) all students will be prepared to make a successful transition to the high school level so as to meet the academic goals for their future education, and 3) all students will develop and consistently demonstrate responsible, respectful, and ethical behavior in a safe, clean, and orderly learning environment.

Along with our exceptional curriculum that challenges students of all levels, we are very proud of our extensive elective choices for students to expand talents, explore new learning opportunities and build self-confidence to transfer to other areas of success. Some of our electives include an award-winning band and color guard program, choir, culinary arts, engineering, robotics, art, dance, theater arts, Spanish, and leadership classes. The PDCMS color guard team won the California State Championship for the fifth year in a row and competed at the high school level. Seven band students were selected to be part of the All-State Honor Band. Students from the advanced robotics/computer science class compete in the Greater San Diego Botball Tournament in San Diego and the International competition annually. PDCMS also supports a very successful AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination) program with AVID elective classes at all three grade levels.

Our success is due to a dedicated group of teachers who believe in engaging students with hands-on learning experiences in all disciplines. Our science teachers provide discovery learning opportunities with weekly lab projects. Our humanities program includes the integration of language arts, literature, and social studies. History comes alive with primary source materials and greater understanding through the reading of novels. Students learn through writing, debating, and oral presentations.

Let’s also shout from the rooftops that two Desert Sands Unified School District teachers share the spotlight as Riverside County Office of Education Teachers of the Year for 2019-2020. Jodi Fecera, a family and consumer sciences teacher, is the pride of Palm Desert Charter Middle School. Go Panthers!


Image Sources

  • Libary: DSUSD