"In the most ideal of circumstances middle schools aren't in the middle at all. Rather, middle school students are "top dogs," the oldest and most respected members of their student community. One of the reasons I believe so strongly in BCD's PS - 8th grade model is that our oldest students become the natural leaders of our school. They are athletes, members of student council, leaders in their Bulldog Families (comprising one student from each grade, PS - 8th), and mentors. They develop a sense of responsibility for our school culture, uninfluenced by the high school milieu, which creates more reflective, thoughtful, and grounded human beings."