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Shawnee Heights Middle School

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Welcome! Thank you for your interest in the Shawnee Heights Middle School (SHMS). For information on enrolling in our school or school supply lists, click here. To view available positions at SHMS or to sign up for job alerts, click here.


  • Opened: 1962 as Shawnee Heights High School
    • 1982 renamed as Shawnee Heights Jr. High
    • 1992 renamed as Shawnee Heights Middle School
  • Grades: 7-8
  • Students: 600 (on average)
  • Teachers
    • 24 core teachers (English, Math, Science, and Social Studies)
    • 14 elective
    • 9 special education
    • 10 to 12 paraprofessionals (on average)
    • 2 counselors & 1 social worker
    • 2 front office staff & one half-time registrar
    • 2 administrators
      • Tim Urich – Principal, Last Names A-K
        • This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
      • Brad Mickens – Assistant Principal & Athletic Director, Last Names L-Z
        • This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
      • Donated $6,733 to the United Way
      • Raised $5,827 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society
      • Prepared 3,200 meals for Harvesters of Topeka
      • Donated 2,500 lbs of food to Project Topeka

The 7th and 8th-grade students are divided among the three teams at their respective grade levels. Each team has a balance of gender, ethnicity, academics, and behavior. The team names are 7Red, 7White, 7Blue, and 8Red, 8White, and 8Blue. Each team is like a small, independent school on its own. Each team has 4 core teachers and a special education co-teacher. The core teachers meet M, T, TH, and F to organize team business and to plan interventions for the academic and behavioral concerns of their students. Wednesdays are reserved for grade-level department meetings. Parents and guardians may meet with the team by emailing a team member and making an appointment. 8th-grade teams meet at 9:30 and 7th-grade teams meet at 10:20. If your child has an IEP, 504, or ELL plan, your annual meeting will be conducted during team time. The fundamental purpose of teaming is to provide the structure and support for middle school students to achieve positive academic and behavior outcomes.


SHMS is one of the top performing middle schools in Kansas and Shawnee County as measured by the math, reading, and science state assessments and the NWEA MAP assessments in reading and math.

2017-2018 Kansas Assessment Proficiency Levels


Percent Proficient SHMS

Percent Proficient Kansas

7th Reading



7th Math



8th Reading



8th Math



Science (8th only)



The school teaches and encourages a growth mindset among students. A growth mindset describes the idea that students should set academic and behavior goals and regularly monitor their progress toward these goals. For example, instead of thinking, “I’m not good at this,” students should think, “I’m on the right track.” One way that our school measures growth is the NWEA MAP assessments in reading and math. SHMS students sit for the MAP assessments in August and again in May. The MAP assessments produce a three-digit score called an RIT score. Most students simply call it their ‘MAP score.’ The MAP score is like a meter stick for academic growth across grade levels. In the same way that children get taller as they age, their MAP scores increase over time. MAP scores are used by teachers to develop curriculum and plan instruction. MAP scores are used by teachers and parents to choose courses for students. The school’s fundamental assumption is that all children should show growth in reading and math on the MAP assessments. Your students will receive a print-out of their historical MAP assessment scores after the fall MAP window closes. This is usually around September 1st.

In addition to the core courses of English, Math, Science and Social Studies, students will take wide variety of elective courses. Some examples are:

Fine Arts

Art 7/8, Art Explorations, Design, Multicultural Art, Digital Visual Arts

Performing Arts

Choir 7/8, Band 7/8, Orchestra 7/8


Mobile App Design, Computers and Careers, Robotics 7/8


FACS, Spanish, German, Physical Education, Health, Healthy Lifestyles, Communication, Leadership

Extra Support

Read 180, Math Mastery, Gifted Education (SEEK)

Athletics / Activities

SHMS students may select from a wide variety of athletics and co-curricular activities. Students in a performing arts class will have one concert per quarter. Additionally, the choir instructor will direct a play/musical and talent show each year (auditions required.) Students who share a niche interest or hobby may have success in recruiting teachers to sponsor an after-school club.


Fall Sports
Football, Volleyball, Cross-Country

Winter Sports
Wrestling, Girls Basketball, Boys Basketball

Spring Sports

Dance & Cheer
Late in their 7th gr year, students may try out for the Cheer or Dance team for their 8th gr year. Cheer and Dance are not currently offered in the 7th grade. Students who participate in Cheer or Dance practice and perform throughout the school year.


Each student is assigned an iPad at the beginning of the school year. Students collect their iPads from the Advisor teacher’s classroom each morning and stow them back in the iPad cart at the end of the day. The iPad is an educational tool and expectations are listed in the student handbook. Each classroom is equipped with an Apple TV, short-throw projector and other types of educational technology. The learning management system for grades 7 – 12 is called Canvas. Each student has a Canvas account where they will access instructional content posted by their teachers. All students are assigned an email address by the district beginning in the 3rd grade.


Students are given the chance each quarter to participate in the S.T.A.T.E (Students Taking Action Toward Excellence) program. Students who demonstrate good behavior, passing grades and who are in good social standing (as noted below) will qualify to attend a quarterly celebration of their success.

S.T.A.T.E Quarterly Eligibility Criteria

  • No grades of D’s or F’s for the quarter.
  • No discipline points for the quarter.
  • Students should be “in good standing”. Integrity issues in proximity to a S.T.A.T.E activity such as cheating, bullying, fighting or other concerning behavior that warrants conversations with students or parents can disqualify a student from being recognized or participating.
  • No more than 2 minors referrals during the quarter for which discipline points were not assigned.
  • No student who receives a discipline referral on the day of a S.T.A.T.E activity or dance will be allowed to participate in the activity.

Night of the Stars & Worlds of Fun Trip
The Night of the Stars is a special award dinner in mid-May for both 7th and 8th-grade students who qualify. The dinner is a S.T.A.T.E. activity for those students who demonstrate behavior and academic progress most congruent with middle school expectations. There is no charge for the dinner.

Night of the Stars Eligibility Criteria

  • 0 minimum GPA for each quarter.
  • No discipline points for the year.
  • 3 tardies or fewer for each quarter.
  • Met the quarterly S.T.A.T.E. eligibility criteria each quarter.
  • In good-standing with the team and administration

The Worlds of Fun trip is the 4th quarter S.T.A.T.E. activity for both 7th and 8th grade students. The trip typically occurs on the Thursday (7th grade) and Friday (8th grade) during the 3rd week of May. The Worlds of Fun 2018-2019 trip cost student share is $45. This cost includes the ticket price, lunch and a partial charge to offset a portion of the bussing expense. If your child has a season pass, the student share is $15. Historically, 80% of students at each grade level have met the qualifying criteria (Quarterly Eligibility Criteria above.)


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