Silver Creek Middle Revealed As Community Pick for Name of New Kensington School

Silver Creek Middle Revealed As Community Pick for Name of New Kensington School

County school board will have the final say

| Published:

New Kensington area middle school

Andrew Metcalf

If local parents have their way, the Kensington middle school scheduled to open in August will take its name from Silver Creek, a “natural winding stream” that eddies and flows nearby.

The Montgomery County Board of Education has the final say on school naming and will consider the community’s recommendation, Silver Creek Middle School, when it meets Thursday.

In February, the board came up with four name suggestions for the Kensington school: Silver Creek, Kensington, Harriet Tubman and Dr. Paul L. Vance, a former superintendent of Montgomery County Public Schools.

The new school’s principal, Traci Townsend, organized a naming committee that ranked the options and added Rock Creek Hills and Katherine Johnson middle schools to the mix. Johnson is the African-American research mathematician whose work at NASA was highlighted in the film Hidden Figures

The committee of 15 parents and a member of the Rock Creek Hills Neighborhood Association picked Silver Creek as its favorite, followed by Katherine Johnson, Kensington, Rock Creek Hills, Harriet Tubman and Dr. Paul L. Vance.

The group thought about diversity, educational leadership roles and geography when determining  its ranking, according to an MCPS staff memorandum to Superintendent Jack Smith. The group had one week to gather input from other community members about which middle school title was best.

The memorandum described Silver Creek’s sylvan setting and called it a “haven for native wildlife” including herons, turtles, deer, coyotes and beaver. The name also has symbolic value, the document continued.

“[I]t is a small tributary, which joins other streams as part of the larger Rock Creek, just as this new middle school is a tributary that will join with another stream of students to become part of the larger [Bethesda-Chevy Chase] High School,” the memo stated.

North Chevy Chase, Rock Creek Forest, Chevy Chase and Rosemary Hills elementary schools will feed into the new Kensington middle school.

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