Monthly Archives: May 2013

Dalton Education Foundation Annual Awards Exceed $27,000

The 2013 Dalton Education Foundation (DEF) grants and awards cycle resulted in over $27,000 being distributed to students, teachers, and schools in the Dalton Public School System.  “DEF remains focused on rewarding and promoting innovation and excellence in our local schools,” said Bob Bethel, president of the Dalton Education Foundation. Roughly half of the grants and awards fell into the scholarships and awards category and the balance was distributed as grants and designated gifts.”

Highlights of the 2013 program include funding for Tom Jones Grants for Excellence to teachers to support enhanced student engagement and understanding went to Jane Keegan at Brookwood Elementary, and Julia Higgins and Irene Quintero at Morris Innovative High School. Additionally, The Rowena Martin Innovative Teaching Grant was awarded to Tiffany Thompson at Continue reading

McKinney Named Athletic Director/Assistant Principal at Dalton High


Jeff McKinney has been named Athletic Director/Assistant Principal at Dalton High School effective July 1. McKinney replaces Ron Ward, who moved to the associate principal’s position at the school. McKinney currently serves as the varsity girls’ basketball coach and teaches math at the school.

McKinney has been at Dalton High School since 2001. As coach of the Lady Catamounts’ varsity basketball team, the team advanced to the state playoffs for 10 out of his 12 years as coach, finishing as runner up in 2011. He also was recognized with the Region Coach of the Year Award in 2011. Continue reading

Diet Coke/Mentos Experiment a Hit at Westwood


Alexis Lynch reacts to her Diet Coke/Mentos fountain.

When the field near Westwood’s playground is wet and muddy with puddles of Diet Coke, it can only mean one thing—the annual Mentos/Diet Coke experiment has just taken place.

Westwood Challenge teacher Martha Thomason has conducted this experiment with her students for years, but this was the first time it had been done with all (78 students in 1st – 5th grades) Challenge students.

“When we study the scientific method and discuss making predictions/hypotheses, this is one of the experiments I do,” Thomason said. “It is the favorite of my students.” Continue reading

Dalton Middle’s Coleman Wins State Poetry Contest

Caroline Coleman stands with her poem at the Georgia River of Words Awards Ceremony in Decatur, Georgia.

Caroline Coleman stands with her poem at the Georgia River of Words Awards Ceremony in Decatur, Georgia.

            Caroline Coleman continues to be recognized for her writing skills.

Not only was the Dalton Middle 6th grader a Young Georgia Author, but the 12-year-old was recently declared a state winner in the Georgia River of Words contest.

The contest comes out of Project WET—a project that strives to promote knowledge, appreciation and stewardship of water resources. Continue reading

Roan Partners with Emory to Tackle Autism

Xavier Benson holds up his finished toolbox.

Xavier Benson holds up his finished toolbox.

One in 88 children.

One in 54 boys.

One in 252 girls.

These numbers represent the statistics and chances of a child having autism.

Roan School has made it one of their missions to reach out to DPS elementary-aged students with autism and help them go out into the world without fear or doubt.

The autism classes at Roan have grown from one class to three that now hold 20 students. Any autistic child within the DPS system—it doesn’t matter what their zoned elementary school is— can come to the classes at Roan. Continue reading

Westwood Rockets Soar Over Harmon

Liam Davies watches as his rocket flies into the air.

Liam Davies watches as his rocket flies into the air.

To study force and motion, the 4th grade Challenge students at Westwood School did more than read a textbook—they took to Harmon Field to launch their own rockets.

The annual Rocket Launch that has been going on at the DPS school for 10 years gives the students a chance to build their own rocket and apply standards along with it.

The 18 students built their rockets from a kit of cardboard supplies and launched it themselves at the field. The rockets shot in the air leaving a cloud of smoke behind. Parachutes opened on the rockets and they floated down to the ground.

“It’s all about following directions,” Challenge teacher Martha Thomason said of the project. “Overall they did a good job.” Continue reading

Espitia Named Gates Millennium Scholar

Dalton High's Gaby Espitia is one of the 1,000 recipients of the Gates Millennium Scholarship.

Dalton High’s Gaby Espitia is one of the 1,000 recipients of the Gates Millennium Scholarship.

Dalton High has had its fair share of Gates Millennium Scholars, and this year is no different—senior Gaby Espitia was recently named one of the 1,000 recipients of this prestigious award. Espitia is the 11th student to receive the scholarship at Dalton High since 2008.

To be considered for the Gates Millennium Scholarship, applicants must be going into college, have a 3.3 high school GPA, demonstrate leadership abilities, and be of a minority race.

The 18-year-old applied for the scholarship when it opened in October. Along with a generic application, she had to gather two recommendations and complete eight essays. Each essay had a maximum word count of 1,000 and covered areas from strengths (she excels in Latin) and weaknesses (math is her least favorite subject), to goals and community service. Continue reading