Middle School Magnet Consortium → About

Below is a general summary regarding the MSMC. You can also refer to the Frequently Asked Questions for more information.

About the Middle School Magnet Consortium

Overview

The Middle School Magnet Consortium (MSMC) is made up of three schools--Argyle, Loiederman, and Parkland middle schools--each of which offers an innovative and challenging magnet curriculum. Argyle focuses on advanced information technology, Loiederman offers a creative and performing arts focus, and Parkland provides students the opportunity to explore mathematics and science through aerospace technology and robotic engineering. All three schools offer advanced mathematics.

Current Grade 5 students who reside within the geographic boundaries of Argyle, Loiederman, and Parkland will attend one of the three MSMC schools in Grade 6. In the fall of Grade 5, in-Consortium students and their parents will participate in the Choice process, and will rank in order their choice of MSMC schools. In-Consortium students who have siblings attending MSMC schools are guaranteed assignment to the same MSMC school if the parent completes the sibling link section on the Choice form.

All Grade 5 students who reside in Montgomery County and outside the MSMC geographic boundaries are invited to apply to the three MSMC schools. In the fall of Grade 5, interested out-of-Consortium students and their parents may participate in the Choice process.

Montgomery County Public Schools considers a variety of factors when assigning students to MSMC schools. These factors include the number of available seats, rank order of choices, sibling preference, socioeconomic status, and gender.

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For New Students - In-Consortium Students

New Grade 5 students who have enrolled in MCPS prior to the November deadline for Choice forms will participate in Round One of the Choice Process.

New Grade 5 students who have enrolled in MCPS after the November deadline, but before the Round Two deadline in February will participate in Round Two of the Choice process.

New Grade 5 students who have enrolled in MCPS after the Round One and Round Two deadlines, but before the end of the school year, will participate in the Choice process. They will be assigned an MSMC middle school for the next school year based on availability at each school.

New Grade 6, 7, and 8 students who live within the geographic boundaries of the MSMC must enroll with MCPS by scheduling an appointment with the Division of Consortia Choice and Application Program Services at 301 592 2040. At this time a school assignment will be made.

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For New Students - Out-of-Consortium Students

New Grade 5 students who have enrolled in MCPS prior to the November deadline for Choice forms have the option to participate in Round One of the Choice process.

New Grade 5 students who have enrolled in MCPS after the November deadline, but before the Round Two deadline in February have the option to participate in Round Two of the Choice process.

New Grade 5 students who have enrolled in MCPS after the Round Two February deadline, but before the end of the school year, cannot participate in the Choice process. As Grade 6 students, they may participate in the Choice process for Grade 7.

New Grade 6 students who do not reside within the geographic boundaries of the MSMC may participate in the Choice process for Grade 7. New Grade 7 students who do not reside within the geographic boundaries of the MSMC may not participate in the Choice process. Assignment to an MSMC school is based on space availability.

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For Non-MCPS Students

To participate in the Choice process for the MSMC, you must be a resident of Montgomery County. Non-MCPS students who reside in Montgomery County follow the Choice process for out-of-Consortium students.

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Goals and Objectives

The Middle School Magnet Consortium (MSMC) was originally funded by a $7.2 million grant from 2004-2007 from the United States Department of Education. The grant goals were to--

  • improve student performance at Consortium schools;
  • broaden student choices in middle school programs in MCPS; and
  • decrease socioeconomic isolation in Consortium schools.

The goal of Argyle Magnet School for Digital Design and Development is to offer students in Grades 6, 7, and 8 a rigorous academic program focused on the development and application of information technology. All students take a comprehensive technology course in each of the first two years, working towards national technology certification. Students may choose to take a second strand of high school level elective courses, specializing in technology systems, programming, digital media, or Web development.

The goal of A. Mario Loiederman Magnet School for the Creative and Performing Arts is to offer students in Grades 6, 7, and 8 a rigorous program focused through the creative and performing arts. All students take a comprehensive arts course in Grade 6 and may choose to take high level arts electives in the areas of visual arts, dance, theater, and music.

The goal of Parkland Magnet School for Aerospace Technology is to offer students in Grades 6, 7, and 8 a rigorous academic program focused through advanced and applied mathematics, science, and technology. All students take an interdisciplinary science course each year and may choose to take a high level science elective with the goal of taking a high school science course in Grade 8.

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Common Features

The schools that form the Middle School Magnet Consortium each have a distinct instructional focus, yet share several common elements to establish a rigorous academic program for all students.  All MSMC schools offer--

  • an accelerated core curriculum through which students have the opportunity to earn up to eight high school credits;
  • specialized courses and extended learning opportunities that help students build interdisciplinary connections tied directly to the school's instructional focus;
  • highly effective instructional programs characterized by extended learning opportunities for students and extensive professional development for staff; and
  • collaborative partnerships with business and community organizations to support the instructional focus of the school.

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In-Consortium vs. Out-of-Consortium

Students are considered "in-Consortium" if they reside in the following elementary school neighborhoods:

  • Bel Pre Elementary School
  • Brookhaven Elementary School
  • Georgian Forest Elementary School
  • Harmony Hills Elementary School
  • Sargent Shriver Elementary School
  • Strathmore Elementary School
  • Viers Mill Elementary School
  • Weller Road Elementary School
  • Wheaton Woods Elementary School

Students who reside in Montgomery County, but do not reside in one of the elementary school neighborhoods listed above are considered "out-of-Consortium."

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