Ocoee Middle School

Ocoee Middle School
Ocoee Middle School
"Considering Others and Learning Together"
Cleveland, Tennessee
Coordinates 35°10′32″N 84°52′07″W / 35.175632°N 84.868484°W / 35.175632; -84.868484
Type Public
Established 2001[1]
School district Bradley County Schools
Principal Ron Spangler
Faculty approx. 80
Grades 6-8
Number of students approx. 1,200[2]
Color(s) (Gold, White, and Navy)
Mascot Colts
Newspaper Colt Connection[3]
Assistant Principals Larry Osbourne, Beverly Ledford
Address 2250 N Ocoee Street

Ocoee Middle School (OMS) is a middle school located at northern edge of downtown Cleveland, Tennessee. As of 2007, it is the 17th largest middle school in Tennessee, and the largest in the county.[2] Its current principal is Ron Spangler. Its name is reminiscent of the nearby Ocoee River.



The building that currently houses OMS was built in 1916 as Bradley Central High School (BCHS). It was formed when Bradley County High School of Charleston, TN and Central High School of Cleveland, TN merged together.[4] Quintin Miller Smith was its first principal.[5] For over fifty years it was one of the largest high schools in Tennessee,[4] but in 1972, due to the school's condition, BCHS moved to another location in Cleveland where it remains today. The building then changed into Bradley Jr. High School (BJHS) and remained this way up until 2001, when BJHS was renamed Ocoee Middle School to reflect the transition from a junior high school to a middle school.[6] Bill Winters was the schools first principal.[7] In mid-2004, Ron Spangler replaced Bill Winters as the new OMS principal.[8]

Land offer controversy

In the summer of 2005, OMS received an offer from local resident Joe C. Stuart to donate about 25 acres for construction of a brand new Ocoee Middle School at the intersection of North Lee Highway and Sequoia Road.[9] For a while, the gift was going to be accepted and OMS was going to be rebuilt there instead of inhabiting the already 85-year old Bradley Jr. High School. However, the offer was ultimately turned down by the Bradley County Commission who instead chose to renovate OMS.[9] The exact reason it was turned down remains in speculation.

Mission statement

Taken from the OMS website

The mission of Ocoee Middle School is to provide the curriculum focused on the total development of the child through a variety of educational experiences. The school is committed to fostering in students the desire and the capacity to become life-long learners and responsible citizens.


Every grade level at OMS is divided into teams. Previously the teams were three colors: white, blue, and gold (the school's colors) set with their grade (for instance, 7th Grade White would be 7W). This changed in 2006, when they changed the names from colors to horses. It originally had three teams per grade totaling nine teams, but this changed again in 2007 when the sixth grade teams moved to six teams with five of them having three teachers per team. This left two of the names retired. The following chart shows the team names. Number of teachers is the same unless otherwise marked.

6th Grade 7th Grade 8th Grade Retired
Broncos Clydesdales Show Horses Appaloosas[10]
Brumbies Pacers Thoroughbreds Black Stallions[10]
Morgans Mustangs Walking Horses Palominos
Nokotas Belgians
Quarter Horses


Sample gold and silver cards

Ocoee Middle has an outstanding academic tradition, which they promote by listing the Gold Honor Roll. A student must have an overall A average with no grade below a B, to get in. Any student who attended Ocoee Middle the previous year and meets the criteria will receive either a gold or silver card that can be used for free admission (for gold cards) or half off (silver cards) to school events. These events include ball games, dances, etc. These cards are earned per semester and students, if they lose the first one, will have pay a $3.00 fee for a replacement card. Incoming sixth graders will not be considered until after the first semester at Ocoee Middle.[11] Since 2007, all cards have an Ocoee Middle School stamp on the back, to prevent counterfeits.

Renovation Project

Hole punched into the side of "F Building"

In December 2005, Ocoee Middle School began a $6 million renovation/addition project.[12] In December 2006, county school officials were asking for a minimum of $7.5 million for additional renovations to the school, but only were able to receive $4 million.[2] With the $7.5 million, the school would be able to demolish the old gymnasium and an asbestos-infested wing of the school (known as "F Building"), but with the money approved the will only be able to do one or the other.[2] Construction teams are currently renovating the gymnasium and have finished deconstructing "F Building".

New building

The New OMS Building from the west
More photos of the building here

The school had been in need of new classrooms for a while. In 2005–06, the Bradley County School Board voted to begin construction on a new wing for Ocoee Middle School. The inside of it was completed in late December 2006 and student moved into the building on January 4 while minor adjustments were still being made to the building (such as removing tarps, painting the exterior, and planting grass). The add-on was built on top of the football field. It has two floors, a new cafeteria, a new sports equipment storage area, and contains 26 new classrooms. The total cost of the project was six million dollars. The school was also able to add a new gymatorium (across from the old gym).The renovations have since been completed.Teachers,students,and parents still agree that the rest of the building should be rebuilt. With none of the money remaining the old sections remain. The old sections house: parts of the 7th grade, all of the 8th,the main office,library,band and choir departments,along with the gym.[13] This was just the first phase in the OMS renovation project. The other phases include renovating the gym and relocating the school entrance to the west side of the school.

See also


  1. ^ The building was built in 1916, but did not adapt the name Ocoee Middle School until 2001.
  2. ^ a b c d Johnson, B. Jay (2006-12-20). "FUNDING FEUD: School Board Loses Battle". Bradley News Weekly. http://www.bradleyweekly.com/news.cfm?id=4609&issue=266. Retrieved 2007-08-25. 
  3. ^ Ocoee Middle Announcements for February 19th, 2008 (archived at WebCite)
  4. ^ a b George, Robert L.; Kinder, Mitchell T. (2007), Image of America: Bradley County, Cleveland, TN: Arcadia Publishing (published 2007-02-12), ISBN 978-0738543871, http://books.google.com/?id=K7Abp4WTVMcC&pg=PP1&dq=, retrieved 2007-10-03 .
  5. ^ Author Unknown (2004-09-21), BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH, http://janus.mtsu.edu/qms/qms_bio.htm, retrieved 2007-10-03 
  6. ^ Renner, Amy (2001-03-09), "Ocoee Middle new name for Bradley Junior" (– Scholar search), Cleveland Daily Banner, http://www.clevelandbanner.com/NF/omf/daily_banner/archive_display.html?rkey=0020398, retrieved 2007-08-14 [dead link]
  7. ^ Bill Winters was the first principal after Bradley Jr. High was renamed Ocoee Middle.
  8. ^ Bowers, Larry C. (2004-09-17), "Spangler is named OMS principal" (– Scholar search), Cleveland Daily Banner, http://www.clevelandbanner.com/NF/omf/daily_banner/archive_display.html?rkey=0049250, retrieved 2007-08-13 [dead link]
  9. ^ a b Bowers, Larry C. (2005-08-12). "School board wants land gift reconsidered" (in English). Cleveland Daily Banner. http://www.clevelandbanner.com/NF/omf/daily_banner/archive_display.html?rkey=0055606. Retrieved 2007-10-19. 
  10. ^ a b Formerly part of the sixth grade team
  11. ^ OMS Webmaster. "Ocoee Middle School Academics". Archived from the original on July 5, 2007. http://web.archive.org/web/20070705100522/http://www.ocoeemiddle.com/academics/index.html. Retrieved 2007-11-04. 
  12. ^ Bowers, Larry C. (2005-12-15), "OMS design given unanimous approval" (– Scholar search), Cleveland Daily Banner, http://www.clevelandbanner.com/NF/omf/daily_banner/archive_display.html?rkey=0057707, retrieved 2007-08-13 [dead link]
  13. ^ Bennett, Brooke (2007-01-01). "Moving In At Ocoee Middle". WDEF News 12. http://wdef.com/node/1868. Retrieved 2007-08-14. 

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