Dartmouth Public Schools

Take A Risk, iInspire, Kindness Matters, You Matter

District Strategic Plan - Calling all Strategist!

Calling all strategists! For the past four years the district has been guided by a strategic plan which includes three strategic objectives: Teaching and Learning, Equity and Access and Community Engagement. We have been intentional developing initiatives under each objective, monitoring progress and updating initiatives and actions steps in line with accomplishments, reassessment and needs; this intentionality transcends to each school, ensuring alignment throughout the district. Each year, our schools assess progress made relative to individual school improvement plans and adjust as needs or new ideas emerge.

We are now ready to take a good look at our focus areas to determine next steps. We are particularly interested in adjusting our thinking in light of the work we have been doing around future focused thinking, innovation, mindset, STEM and mental health. This is exciting work that involves folks in rigorous thinking and dialogue. Decisions made during this process impact all of us as the end result sets the stage for future work.

To that end we welcome your participation in this exciting work. If you are interested in joining the strategic planning group please let your principal know by December 6. Depending on the number of volunteers we will draw names to ensure a manageable size working group. For planning purposes we have scheduled our first meeting for a full day, January 29th.

Professional Level License Renewal and PDP's

To renew a Primary area Professional level license, educators need the following breakdown of Professional Development Points (PDP's):

  • At least 15 PDPs in content (subject matter knowledge)
  • At least 15 PDPs in pedagogy (professional skills and knowledge)
  • At least 15 PDPs related to Sheltered English Immersion (SEI) or English as a Second Language (ESL)
  • At least 15 PDPs related to training in strategies for effective schooling for students with disabilities and the instruction of students with diverse learning styles
  • The remaining required 90 PDPs may be earned through any combination of “elective” activities that address other educational issues and topics that improve student learning, additional content, or pedagogy.

The renewal of each Additional area license(s) will require 30 PDPs, of which 15 out of the 30 must be content related. Guidelines Updates

The Dartmouth Curriculum Council met recently to help plan our ERD strands for 2020. Teacher feedback results, the Professional Development Survey and student data was reviewed to see patterns and trends to develop strands.

Please take the survey below to help us determine at what school level a 15 PDP Sheltered English Immersion (SEI) course in needed/wanted.

SEI PD Strand 2020

Please click here to take a quick 3 question survey regarding PD related to Sheltered English Immersion (SEI) or English as a Second Language (ESL)

DMS Reading Wall of Fame

DMS Teachers can recommend students for the Reading Wall of Fame for being a crazy reader, for finally catching the reading bug, or anything else related to reading. Lots of students like to stop by the bulletin board in the hallway to find ideas for new books to read!

Happy Birthday Mickey Mouse

November 18th was Mickey Mouse's Birthday and all elementary schools celebrated with homemade cupcakes at lunch.
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Project TIME and Skillful Teacher

This month Project TIME secondary mentees met at DMS and elementary mentees meet at Quinn School. Both groups discussed Part 2, Instruction in The Skillful Teacher: Building Your Teaching Skills by Jon Saphier. A major topic of this section is Clarity. Teachers discussed how to make concepts and skills clear and accessible to students. The elementary folks participated in a Chalk Talk Protocol. Mentees discussed 'framing the learning' the importance of helping students place new information into a larger framework of meaning. Establishing this big picture for students can include: communicating the objective of the lesson, explaining why it is worthwhile to know this, outlining the itinerary, highlighting the big idea or essential question, specifying the reason for an activity, and communicating the criteria for success for a product or performance students are expected to create.

Ed Camp at DHS

The Dartmouth High School Faculty engaged in a unique and powerfully personalized professional learning experience at the first DHS ED Camp. The afternoon began when all members of the faculty gathered in the auditorium to learn the basic structure and philosophy behind the ED Camp model before contributing suggestions for different topics they'd be interested in learning more about from their colleagues. This "unconference" model ensures a high level of voice and choice in the professional learning experience and provided participants the opportunity to share their expertise and passion around a variety of topics related to their professional practice.

DHS Cheer Team

Congratulations to Dartmouth High’s Cheer Team! The team earned their highest score of the season at the South Regional Competition.
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Students in Mr. Bowman and Mrs. Rosa’s class at Quinn Elementary created posters during their core math time to represent their knowledge of the Massachusetts Curriculum Frameworks Standard 5.NF.1 - Add and subtract fractions with unlike denominators (including mixed numbers) by replacing given fractions with equivalent fractions in such a way as to produce an equivalent sum or difference of fractions with like denominators. The objective of the activity was for students to take their knowledge of adding and subtracting fractions with unlike denominators and apply their understanding to real world situations. Students were tasked to include a visual representation of their real world problem to solidify their understanding of the mathematical concept.

MATSOL - Massachusetts Association of Teachers of Speakers of Other Languages

Kelly Duarte, DMS and DHS ELL Teacher, recently lead a MASOL Low Incidence Special Interest Group (SIG). This a group provides ongoing support to educators who struggle with implementation of state and federal mandates for English learner education due to their low number of ELL students. Attendees sharing resources such as forms, parent manuals, translation resources, and curriculum resources. Also, participants collaborate on exploring topics such as second language acquisition vs. language disability, language assessment testing, gaining support from administrators, and CPR compliance issues.

This was the first of three meetings Dartmouth will be hosting this school year.

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USBands National Champions

The students and staff of the Dartmouth High School Band recently traveled to MetLife Stadium in New Jersey to culminate their competition season with USBands. The band received a score of 98.575, matching the highest score of any USBands National Competition. This was also the highest score of any class and several scores were perfect tens such as Ensemble Music and Percussion.

Quinn's Mathematicians of the Month

Each month at Quinn there is a school-wide focus on one Mathematical Practice with the goal being to help students and staff become better mathematicians. Quinn's October Mathematicians of the Month were recognized for outstanding effort and for showing a growth mindset related to Mathematical Practice #1: Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them. Great job mathematicians!"
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ST Math

Cushman and DeMello schools were recognized at a recent ST Math champions conference at Worcester Polytechnic University. Both Cushman and DeMello are among the top 10% performing schools in Massachusetts in student progress in ST Math during the first term of the school year. Cushman was selected for a prize from the top 10% schools and received an original art piece of Jiji the penguin, the ST Math mascot, which was autographed by founder Dr. Matthew Peterson, known as Jiji's dad! Dartmouth staff heard from Dr. Peterson during the keynote speech.
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Brain Breaks

Geronimo the Sloth is ready to provide a little brain break for students in the LMC at DMS!

By providing time for a brain break, students learn more! Brain breaks are little, quick activity shifts that mobilize different networks of the brain. When we support students by providing an activity that uses different brain networks, it allows the learning pathways to restore.

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Tom Aungst Receives Yamaha Legacy Award

On Friday, November 15, 2019, Tom Aungst, the Assistant High School Band Director and System Wide Percussion Specialist, received the YAMAHA LEGACY AWARD. This international award is presented annually to top educators based on their involvement with The Yamaha Corporation and their endless commitment to music education. Mr. Aungst has been at Dartmouth Public Schools since 1992 and has been active in the world of percussion for over 4 decades. He was inducted into the Cadets Drum Corps Hall of Fame in 2003, the Drum Corps Hall Fame in 2006, the WGI Indoor Percussion Hall of Fame in 2014 and the World Drum Corps Hall of Fame in 2017.

Local Author Visit

Local author Don Samspon visited DeMello Elementary to read his new book The Scarecrow King.


Students collected school wide data (Potter School's Favorite Chocolate Candy) and represented it on a bar graph. Students were invited to answer questions relating to the graph. Students realize that estimation is an important life skill. First grade students make estimates at the Math Estimation Board. Estimating is good for the brain, it keeps your mind active.
4 Ways to Build Relationships With Your Students

Click here for an short article from EDUCATION WEEK TEACHER on relationship building.

Staff Spotlight

Name: Susan Pielech

School/Position: 8th grade ELA/History

Hometown: South Dartmouth

Education: MA Education, Simmons College, BS Business, UMASS Dartmouth

One goal I have achieved in my career: When a former student approaches me and comments that I was important to them and impacted them in a positive way.

A long term goal I am working toward: to continue to participate in a positive way in the growth and development of my students! And to retire knowing I gave it my all!

Role model or someone who has had a great impact on my life: My parents, especially my dad, who always showed me through his own example the importance of hard work and the importance of relationships.

If I could travel anywhere in the world it would be: African Safari and European Cruise

If I could eat dinner with someone famous, dead or alive, it would be: My Nana, Benjamin Franklin, Mark Twain, Tom Brady and Bruno Mars

Pet Peeve: Bad drivers , asparagus and mean people!

Favorite leisure-time activity: Spending time with my family and dogs, Boating, traveling, cooking, shopping, New England sports fan

Favorite Television show: Downton Abbey, The Tudors, Travels with My Father

Favorite book: To Kill A Mockingbird, Of Mice and Men, and As The Crow Flies

I think the world’s greatest invention is: Electricity! ;) Also, Labradors Retrievers!!!

My favorite motto or saying: Nothing Will Work Unless You Do

What I like best about working at DPS: Being able to work in the incredible community where I was raised.