Secondary Schools Spotlight » Carmenita Middle School

Carmenita Middle School





Robert Castillo

13435 E. 166th St.
Cerritos 90703
FAX * 404-7807

Carmenita Middle School’s mission is

to ensure successful progress for all

Carmenita Middle School (CMS) is an award-winning middle school that continues to serve an important role in our community.  CMS staff and support belive that all students can and will make progress academically, social-emotionally, and in other aspects of their lives.  Our belief and supports for systems are rooted in the idea that we can “Accelerate Excellence” and “...ensure successful progress for all.” CMS has been recognized as a National Blue Ribbon School, California Distinguished School, California Business for Education Excellence Honor Roll recipient, the California School Board Association’s Golden Bell Award recipient for our Distinguished Scholars Program, California Gold Ribbon School and a National and California Schools to Watch to serve as a national model of a high achieving middle school.  This year, CMS was once again re-designated as a California and National Schools to Watch for 2020 and named a California Business for Education Excellence Scholar School for the tenth year in a row!


Carmenita MS

As stated in our mission statement, CMS students also understand that their successful progress is the most important goal we have here at CMS.  In addition to the support our students receive from their teachers, their parents, and our staff, CMS students are taught to take ownership of their own progress.  Our students read their own assessment data, chart their individual progress, and set goals based on data.  Our teachers have started an innovative program that is only available at Carmenita Middle School in ABCUSD and called it “FLEX.”  The FLEX program allows for a flexible schedule on select Tuesdays and Thursdays to provide enrichment, intervention and study hall support for students based on their assessment and benchmark results.  Teachers work together to analyze their students’ progress and make recommendations for the upcoming FLEX sessions.   

Carmenita MS 


In addition to our core academic course offerings, CMS offers a wealth of extra-curricular, elective, college, and career pathway courses.  We offer courses in art, music, band, computers, Spanish, yearbook, broadcasting, and engineering.  We are in our sixth year of offering the AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination) course in both 7th and 8th grades.  We also offer our newest courses in PLTW (Project Lead the Way), which consists of two courses in engineering and robotics.  Our electives teachers take pride in providing students access to enrichment opportunities that help students discover learning outside of the core curriculum.  


CMS AVID 2019 

Along with “FLEX,” CMS is proud to have a successful and unique program called the Distinguished Scholars Program (DSP). Our DSP was awarded the Golden Bell Award in 2011 as a model middle school program.  All 7th and 8thgrade students have the opportunity to apply and be part of our innovative and successful DSP.  The Program has three overarching goals in support of our school’s mission.

  1. Our first goal is to increase desire and passion for learning.  Often after school, DSP students are seen laughing and working on projects together. Their excitement and zeal for the program is displayed not only through their willingness to go “above and beyond” in a specific content area, but also in their desire to grow as a community of learners and achievers.
  2. Our second goal for the DSP is to prepare students for rigorous high school college-preparatory curriculum. A very clear indication that we are meeting this goal is that most of the DS students are accepted into high school honors classes and upper-level math classes after they are promoted.
  3. Our third goal of the DSP is leadership development. Understanding the significance of community service is essential to the DS program. DS students are required to “give back” to the Carmenita community by leading other students. “Giving back” is done in a variety of ways, and can include tutoring, mentoring, and leading class discussions.
We strongly believe that a healthy body produces a healthy mind.  This belief led us to the creation of our enviable Cougar Health and Fitness Center.  With the help of our CMS PTA, we raised the necessary funds to open our state of the art Fitness Center.  In the Fitness Center, students learn to use fitness machines and technology to improve their physical fitness.  Our student-athletes continue to do well in competition; in fact, our track team has brought home the overall district track championship for a record, 10 years in a row!
Carmenita MS 

We look forward to working with our CMS parents, students, and community members during this school year.  I am confident that it will be another year of ensuring successful progress for all students here in Cougarland!  If you would like more information about our school or would like to contact us, please visit our school’s website at: and follow us on Twitter @carmenitams.

Robert Castillo