Middle school is “where academic achievement in America falters and begins its accelerating decline,” writes Education Gadfly, citing an LA Times editorial that praises KIPP middle schools. Gadfly goes on:
(Middle schools) are usually places where academic rigor and achievement take a back seat to “personal development,” social consciousness, and the inculcation of egalitarian principles. Middle schoolism is about curing the middle school student of his or her supposed dysfunction — which doesn’t leave much time for learning (which the most radical proponents of middle schoolism believe is beyond the ability of early adolescents anyway).
Many kids who’ve done reasonably well in elementary school disengage in middle school and never get back on track.