Dalton Teams Compete in Regional Odyssey of the Mind

The C3 team, "Seeing is Believing," included from left to right, J. P. Clark – BW, Maryellen Hagberg – WW, Noah Gallman – BW, Julia Tucker – BW, Mincey Jones – BW, Savannah Patino – BW, and Jose Collazo – BW.

The C3 team, “Seeing is Believing,” included from left to right, J. P. Clark – BW, Maryellen Hagberg – WW, Noah Gallman – BW, Julia Tucker – BW, Mincey Jones – BW, Savannah Patino – BW, and Jose Collazo – BW.

Since 1989, Dalton Public Schools has been involved in Odyssey of the Mind—a K-12 competition where students think about a given problem and solve it through creative means. This year, three teams from Westwood and 14 teams from C3 competed in the local competition to see which teams would move on to region. Continue reading

Burt Competes in State Level of Geography Bee

Austin Burt shows off his certificate from the state level of the National Geography Bee.

Austin Burt shows off his certificate from the state level of the National Geography Bee. Photo contributed by Amanda Burt

In January, Dalton Middle School held a school-wide version of the National Geography Bee. Anyone in the school could compete in the bee.

By the time the competition was over, 12-year-old Austin Burt had been crowned the champion.

“I’m pretty good,” Burt, who is in the 6th grade, said of his knowledge of geography, “but there’s a lot of luck involved.” Continue reading

Mejia Places Third in State Oratorical Contest

Nathan Dawson's Morris debate team has seen success this year. One of the team's members, Dedarah Mejia placed third in the State Oratorical Contest.

Nathan Dawson’s Morris Innovative High debate team has seen success this year. One of the team’s members, Dedarah Mejia, placed third in the State Oratorical Contest.

Years ago, Dedarah Mejia was too shy to even speak up in Nathan Dawson’s class at Morris Innovative High School.

Now the 17-year-old senior is placing in state competitions for her speaking skills.

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DHS Students Get Moving With Power up for 30

Dalton High students dance for 30 minutes as part of Power up for 30.

Dalton High students dance for 30 minutes as part of Power Up for 30.

In March, Dalton High School began a six-week program called Power Up for 30.

Power Up for 30 is a program by Georgia Shape to get students moving for at least 30 minutes per day and help them focus on health and wellness.

Last year, DHS submitted an application to receive a grant from Georgia Shape and got it.

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Friends Program in First Year at DMS

Abbie Lumpkin, Ollie Lambert, and Makayla Kelly work on making brownies.

Abbie Lumpkin, Ollie Lambert, and Makayla Kelly work on making brownies.

In its first year, the Friends Program at Dalton Middle is breaking boundaries and helping make friendships.

When assistant principal Missie McKinney looked down the halls, she saw something that needed addressing—the opportunity for students with special needs to really interact and form friendships with other students in the building were limited.

“Some students are drawn to these kids,” McKinney said of regular class students to the students with special needs. Continue reading

Deal Speaks to City Park Third Graders

Third graders at City Park listen to Governor Nathan Deal answer their questions.

Third graders at City Park listen to Governor Nathan Deal answer their questions.

The third grade class at City Park got to do something that not many students get to do—they got to have a private conversation with Governor Nathan Deal.

In the fall, the students took a walking field trip of local government. They spoke to Mayor David Pennington, took a tour of city hall and the courthouse.

Once they got back to the school, they wrote letters to Deal asking him to come speak to them and answer some of their questions.

A month after writing the letters, Deal responded that he could not come for a visit, but after more back and forth conversations, the governor agreed to speak to the students through a live feed and answer their questions.

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Dalton’s Brown Passes Student Bar Exam

Dalton High student Kendall Brown was inducted into the Class of 2014 Student Bar of Georgia by Michael NIxon, State Mock Trial coordinator.

Dalton High student Kendall Brown was inducted into the Class of 2014 Student Bar of Georgia by Michael NIxon, State Mock Trial coordinator.

Last fall, Kendall Brown became the first student from Dalton High to attend the State Law Academy. She’s also the school’s first inductee in the Student Bar of Georgia.

Brown, a 17-year-old junior, attended the academy for three days in Atlanta.

To attend the academy, students must have at least one year experience on Mock Trial. Brown has been on the Dalton High Mock Trial team since she was a freshman and was nominated by this year’s team sponsor, Ms. Minako Barry, to attend the academy.

Brown said even though she was excited and happy to be nominated, she was worried she would be attending the academy with students who had more experience.

“I was kind of excited, but concerned,” she said. “Some people were coming from private schools, and some had already pass the Student Bar Exam. There was more pressure on them than me.”

During the academy, Brown and the other students took classes on topics discussing objection, hearsay, and witness vs. attorney. They also got to learn about the court system and meet judges and hear of their career experiences.

On the last day of the academy, everyone had to take the Student Bar Exam. To prepare, students were given a binder with a case in it. Brown said she and her roommate practiced the case and acted it out the night before to be ready for the exam.

The test consisted of essays, a case, and multiple choice.

Months after she took the test, Brown learned she had passed the Student Bar Exam.

“I was happy I passed. I didn’t stay up studying for nothing!” Brown said. “The first one to go from a school usually doesn’t pass.”

Brown recently attended the State Finals Awards Ceremony for the Georgia Mock Trial Competition at the Gwinnett County Courthouse to receive her certificate and be inducted into the Student Bar of Georgia. She was one of only 18 students inducted in the Class of 2013.

When Brown graduates next year, she hopes to attend Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Virginia and major in biology with a minor in business.

By Lindsey Derrick, Dalton Public Schools Contributor