Thursday, October 30, 2014

Dunwoody High Girls Volleyball Team Falls in Final Four

photo courtesy of @dhswildcatpride
Click here to read the recap from DCSD Athletics.

The Dunwoody High Girls Volleyball Team fell to Columbus High School last evening, 1-3.  

Congratulations to the Volleycats on an awesome season - the best in Dunwoody High School history!  

Students from Liberia Cleared to Enroll in Dunwoody Schools

Below is a letter from Dunwoody High School Principal McFerrin regarding the status of the students from Liberia. This letters appears to be the standard wording that the school district is using as the notice from Dunwoody Elementary Principal Sanders is identical to Principal McFerrin's letter to the DHS community.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

WSB: Dunwoody Police Add School Patrols

Photo courtesy of Jon Lewis - WSB Radio

Dunwoody, GA —

If you find yourself seeing a lot of Dunwoody police cars parked near schools, there's good reason.

"We'll be out there, patrolling the areas and making ourselves very visible," says Dunwoody Police Officer Tim Fecht.

Fecht tells WSB the police will be looking for distracted or speeding drivers who are near school zones where kids are walking to, or from, schools.

The extra patrols are the result of a near miss at a local school.

Click here to read the remainder of the story.

FYI to Mr.'s Peachtree Charter Middle School, not Dunwoody Middle School...

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Monday, October 20, 2014

Hats Off to Chesnut Elementary Students for Exceeding The Chesnut Challenge Fundraising Goal!

Chesnut Charter Elementary School celebrated Silly Hat Day on October 17th, a prize earned by the student body as part of the school's new fundraiser, the Chesnut Challenge, a fun run-style event that took place earlier in the month.   The students exceeded their fundraising goal by almost 20 percent, and as a result (among other prizes) they will also enjoy Free Dress Day on October 24th, and a bounce house at recess on October 31st.  The funds raised from the Chesnut Challenge are being directed toward Chesnut’s increased emphasis on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math).

Friday, October 17, 2014

Dunwoody HS Principal McFerrin Interviewed by Ryan Seacrest

Principal McFerrin was interviewed by Ryan Seacrest this morning his "On Air With Ryan Seacrest". Click on the left-most arrow to start the interview.

Click here to view the story and also the interview.

Dunwoody High Volleyball Team Cruises Past Creekview

Dunwoody’s Paige McKnight (8) goes up for a kill against Creekview. (Photo by Mark Brock)
Photo Courtesy of DeKalb County School District
The No. 2 ranked Dunwoody Lady Wildcats advanced to the second round of the Class 5A volleyball state playoffs with a relatively easy 3-0 home victory over Creekview.

Creekview got out to a quick 6-0 lead in the first game before Dunwoody could get going. Dunwoody went on a 12-4 run at that point forcing a Creekview timeout as the Lady Wildcats went up 12-10.

Creekview would tie it at 12-12, but Dunwoody would go ahead 13-12 and put sophomore Madison McKnight back to serve. The Lady Wildcats would go on to win 13 consecutive points with McKnight serving to close out the game 25-12.

Dunwoody was the aggressor to start the second game of the match as McKnight would serve for six consecutive points, including a pair of aces, as the Lady Wildcats jumped to a 9-1 advantage.

Click here to read the remainder of the article.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

DeKalb Schools Blocks Students Returning from West Africa From Enrolling at Dunwoody Elementary and Dunwoody High

Via the AJC:

By Rose French
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution 
Two Dunwoody students who recently returned from West Africa were blocked from enrolling in DeKalb schools this week as a precaution against the spread of Ebola.

DeKalb school officials said the father worked for CARE, a humanitarian organization, as a finance controller in the Liberia/Sierra Leone office. He returned to the United States on Sept. 14 with his family and tried to enroll the children Wednesday at Dunwoody Elementary and Dunwoody High.

According to school officials, the family had a letter from CARE saying more than 21 days had passed since their return from the United States, which is beyond the quarantine period for Ebola. But school officials turned the students away because the district requires confirmation from the CDC or local health department, not from an employer, said spokesman Quinn Hudson.

Click here to view the remainder of the story.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Congratulations to Dunwoody High School
Homecoming Queen & King
Hannah Keen and Gus Ashbury

I love this picture of Hannah, Gus, and DHS Principal McFerrin. Photo is courtesy of DCSD Athletics.

It is these type of moments that reinforce my belief, and insistence, that the "education" of my children go beyond books, homework and tests. To the students and faculty of Dunwoody High School - Well Done!

Jon Shirek of 11 Alive also has a great story/video on the selection of Gus and Hannah.

DUNWOODY, Ga. (WXIA) – At the Dunwoody High School homecoming Friday night, students showed true school spirit during halftime.
This year's Dunwoody High School senior homecoming court -- ten candidates for Homecoming Queen and ten candidates for King -- beamed like the sun under the Friday night lights.
That number included two special needs students their fellow seniors nominated: Hannah Keen, who has Down's syndrome, escorted by her big brother D.R.; and Gus Ashbury. He's a student with autism, escorted by his mother, Mamie.
Click here to read the remainder of the story and view the video.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

2014 DeKalb County Schools SAT and AP Scores

This week the College Board released the SAT and AP scores.  DCSD SAT scores were down around 8%.  That appeared rather high to me, so after reviewing previous year's data, it became apparent that almost of the DCSD high schools had a significant rise in the number of students taking the SAT.  Was this the graduating class that was the recipient of the "free" SAT test compliments of the previous DCSD administration?  If so, there was a caveat at that time that the SAT scores would be reported lower.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Action for Healthy Kids® Awards Playground Improvement Grant to Chesnut Charter Elementary
Refurbished Exercise Facilities Aid in School’s Increased Movement Initiatives

Chesnut Charter Elementary School today announced that it has been awarded a $2,500 grant from Action for Healthy Kids® (AFHK), the nation’s leading nonprofit and largest volunteer network fighting childhood obesity and undernourishment by working with schools to improve nutrition and physical activity. The grant will support improvements to Chesnut’s playground.

With the Action for Healthy Kids grant funds, Chesnut has revitalized its decades old Iron Mountain Forge exercise structure -- replacing rotted wood planks and safety caps for metal poles, and replenishing mulch to provide the requisite soft floor for students dismounting. The AFHK award has also funded brand new Iron Mountain Forge signage that demonstrates sample exercise activities – restoring it to a fully functional exercise structure for the students. As part of playground improvements in Chesnut’s lower field, the grant also paid for new balls and fresh gravel to refurbish Chesnut’s tetherball courts, which had fallen into disuse.

“Chesnut teachers, parents and administration recognize that opportunities to engage in physical activity throughout the school day can positively affect our students’ well-being and help them to focus during lessons. We are very grateful to Action for Healthy Kids’ for this generous grant that is helping Chesnut move forward with our increased movement objectives,“ said Veronica Williams, Chesnut’s Principal. “The refurbished playground facilities are already attracting Chesnut’s students at recess and during the after-care program, affording them with increased opportunities to be physically active.”

About Action for Healthy Kids®
Action for Healthy Kids® (AFHK) fights childhood obesity, undernourishment and physical inactivity by helping schools become healthier places so kids can live healthier lives. The organization partners with a legion of dedicated volunteers - teachers, students, moms, dads, school wellness experts and more - from within the ranks of their 34,000+ constituency to create healthful school changes. After all, everyone has a part to play in ending the nation's childhood obesity epidemic. AFHK's programs, tools and resources make it possible so that many people can.
AFHK's grassroots efforts are supported by a collaboration of more than 70 organizations, corporations and government agencies. Working together, they're giving kids the keys to health and academic success by meeting them where they are - in the classroom, in the cafeteria and on the playground - with fun physical activity and nutrition lessons and changes that make it possible for them to eat nutritiously and play every day. More information is available at Follow us on FacebookTwitter and Pinterest.

About Chesnut Charter Elementary School
Chesnut Charter School was established in 1968 to meet the needs of the Peachtree/Dunwoody community. In the 2000-2001 school year, Chesnut began operating as a Charter School committed to educating the whole child - developing young people who are enthusiastic, knowledgeable, well rounded, physically active, and thoughtful. Chesnut strives for it students to become honorable and contributing citizens, who are internally motivated to achieve their highest potential. Chesnut’s Wellness Action Team, part of the school’s Parent Teacher Council, promotes healthy habits and environment for students, families, faculty and staff in support of DeKalb County's Wellness Policy. By soliciting community, family and staff input, the Wellness Team develops and executes the Chesnut's School Health Improvement Action Plan, which addresses physical, mental and emotional wellness that lead to greater success inside and out of the classroom. 

Monday, October 6, 2014

11 Alive: "Unique Cafe Brings Together Students At Dunwoody High School"
Updated With Video

Kudos to Jennifer Leslie and 11 Alive News for featuring this wonderful program!

Click here to view the video.

Jennifer Leslie, WXIA

DUNWOODY, Ga. -- Every Tuesday morning at Dunwoody High School, there's a line outside Kerry Brown's classroom, which doubles as a unique cafe.

It's named for the school's mascot, and it's run by students with mild intellectual disabilities, like autism and down syndrome.

"I enjoy welcoming people and saying 'Hi, how may I help you?'" said sophomore Prince Montalvo.

The program started a few years ago. The goal is to give students an in-school vocational experience.

Click here to read the remainder of the story. 

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

DeKalb County School District
Charter District Application

The DeKalb County School District has made available, via their website, the Charter District Application.  The Board will be asked to approve the application at the Wednesday, October 8th (rescheduled from Monday, 10/6) Board of Education Meeting.

Click here to review the application.

DeKalb Schools Superintendent Michael Thurmond's
State of the System Address
Dual Accreditation Update

Many thanks to Dunwoody City Council Member Terry Nall for providing a copy of Superintendent Michael Thurmond's "State of the District" address.

Click here to access the text to Superintendent Thurmond's address.

As part of the presentation, Mr. Thurmond provided an update on the Dual Accreditation process that Councilman Nall has championed for ALLof DeKalb high schools for several years.  Many thanks to Councilman Nall for his efforts in making sure this initiative was adopted by the Board of Education and implemented by DCSS!  

Councilman Nall:  "I'm especially pleased to see that the dual accreditation initiative through Georgia Accrediting Commission (GAC) for all of our high schools is underway and proceeding according to plan laid out to the school board in May.  What new is we have specific dates in January for the GAC consultants team site visits to all of the county's high schools."

Page 6 of Thurmond's address lists these dual accreditation activity items (both completed and planned):

* September 11, 2014:  District meets with GAC consultant to discuss plans

* September 24, 2014:  District leaders meet regarding how to provide documentation to each high school for the accreditation process

* October-January:  District leaders assist individual high schools with compiling evidence of compliance

* January 26-28, 2015:  Site visits to the high schools by GAC consultants

* March 2015:  Accreditation is agenda item for GAC Board meeting in Macon