Category Archives: Extracurriculars

We’ve Moved!

11800504_888001141265618_9006027121746929538_nThe Communications Department, school webmasters and media specialists have been working hard to roll out a new website and it’s officially live!

For district news, click here.

Napier Honored by Georgia Senate

BethelNapierState Senator Charlie Bethel recognized Dalton High Coach Bill Napier with a resolution approved by the Georgia Senate at the June meeting of the Dalton Board of Education. Senator Bethel sponsored the resolution to recognize Napier’s work as a teacher and coach as well as the influence he has had on thousands of young people over the course of his career. Napier has taught and coached for over 30 years in northwest Georgia, most recently with Dalton High School.

Dalton Board of Education Chairman Danny Crutchfield also expressed appreciation for Coach Napier’s work at Dalton High. “We are very proud that Coach Land brought Coach Napier to Dalton High as part of our team.” Crutchfield added.



Run, DPS, Run!

Track 15The Fourth Annual Dalton Public Schools Elementary Track Championship run on the Dalton High School track brought third, fourth and fifth grade students together for a day of fellowship, friendly competition and beautiful weather. Continue reading

DPS Hosts 2nd Annual Elementary Chess Tournament

DPS Chess 2“Players, please shake hands with your opponent – 5, 4, 3, 2, 1,” said Dr. Phil Jones, Park Creek Principal. “Begin your games”. Ninety-six anxious fourth and fifth graders became completely silent. The intense concentration and focus for the next 20 minutes became palpable as students from each elementary school competed against each other in the Second Annual DPS Chess Tournament.

Using iPads, eight fourth graders and eight fifth graders from each of Dalton’s six elementary schools played many rounds of chess until the last four players from each grade level remained. Fourth grader Erickson Garnica and fifth grader Daniel Resindez, both from City Park School, placed first in their grade level. Continue reading

Jackson Attends 2014 Law Academy, Passes Student Bar Exam

Trent JacksonTrent Jackson’s interest in mock trial began six years ago as a C3 Challenge 5th grader. After the competition, a judge called him to the table.

“He said he wanted to see me on the Dalton High School mock trial team, so that’s what I did,” said Jackson, now a sophomore at DHS. Continue reading

Girl Power in Computer Science

Girls in the City Park Coding Club work lessons on

Girls in the City Park Coding Club work lessons on

After attending a workshop with, City Park teacher Lisa Cushman saw that the world of computer science is highly missing one thing—girls.

“Girls are underrepresented in the field,” Cushman said.

So she decided to do something about it—Cushman started an all-girls Coding Club at City Park.

“I wanted to give girls a chance to continue the work on coding that they learned in the STEM lab in a girls only setting,” Cushman said.

The club began on December 3, and meets on Wednesdays and Fridays before school from 7:40-8:20.

There are currently 60 3rd through 5th grade girls in the club with another 20 on a waiting list. Cushman said she will hold another club meeting in February so those other 20 girls can have their turn.

“Sometimes girls don’t have the confidence to ask questions and try new things when boys are around.  I wanted to give the girls a setting that was comfortable for them and to help them become more confident when it comes to coding,” said Cushman of the girls only aspect.

The girls are currently working with lessons on

They are working a 20 hour course where they have to produce correct codes in order move symbols, make a dog talk, build a house, and other games.

Nine-year-old 4th grader Gladys Vasquez said she heard Cushman was looking to make the all-girls club and wanted to join.

“I like it just girls. There aren’t any boys around to distract us,” she said.

“Sometimes boys always do the work and make the stuff, and the girls can never get on the computer,” said 3rd grader Bailey Long, 8.

Long said she joined the club when she heard they could be on the computers.

“I thought it would be fun,” she said.

Vasquez said she encourages other people to give computer coding a try.

“Try it, and you can program computers,” she said.

“They are learning valuable 21st century skills. Problem solving, critical thinking, perseverance, collaboration, and more,” Cushman said. “Like Bill Gates says on the video, they are learning to become creators of technology, not just consumers of technology.”

The girls are also looking at Made With Code, a website geared towards girls.

The site shows videos of women in the career field and tells stories of how they have used coding in their lives.

“I hope that the girls will learn how to read and write code and be able use those skills to create the next new thing,” said Cushman. “I hope they will be more comfortable taking a course in computer science in high school or in college based on the work they have done in elementary school. I also hope they will apply their critical thinking and problem solving skills to the work they are doing in their classrooms.”

Cushman also has big plans for the future of the club.

“I would like to bring in some female computer scientists or entrepreneurs to speak to the girls about what they can do if they know how to read and write code,” she said. “I would also like to find a way to fund a 3D printer so that they girls can create something and then see it come to life.”

Cushman said when the boys found out it was girls only, they got upset. Cushman said she may start a club to include boys in the spring, and the girls can show the boys what they know.

The club also fit in nicely with National Computer Science Week (December 8- 12).

During the week, City Park K-5 students (along with other schools in DPS) held an Hour of Code where the students could practice coding.

“I think all of the students should be introduced to coding.  Coding is like learning a foreign language. There are so many benefits of that type of learning that carry over into other subjects in school,” Cushman said. “Also, we need people to fill these types of jobs. If the students are comfortable with coding in elementary, maybe they will continue it and fill those jobs. They will become contributing members of our community, quickly get a job, and make a very good salary.”

By Lindsey Derrick, Dalton Public Schools Contributor

Westwood School Student Wins International Torrance Legacy Creativity Award

Tripp Phillips copyTripp Phillips has only invented one thing in the nine short years he’s been alive. But his first invention, Leglue, won him first place in the 2014 International Torrance Legacy Creativity Award in the Inventions, Toys and Games category granted by The Center for the Gifted.

After years of playing with Legos, Phillips would often get frustrated when pieces would no longer stay connected. One night before going to bed, he had an epiphany that could potentially make Lego-lovers across the world very happy. Continue reading