DHS Weekly Update
Thursday, September 1, 2022
Dear DHS Community,
We certainly are a busy school! I was just reading through all of the wonderful items in today's eBlast and there is a ton of good stuff going on! I know that many of you have reached out disappointed that Curriculum Night is virtual instead of in-person. We are now a school of 1854 students. Having all of our students AND families in our building during one evening event is just not possible; however, I will continue to work on a creative way for us to have an in-person Curriculum Night next year.
In Advisement today, I reviewed and clarified expectations for the Student Section during athletic events. Our students CAN stand during games. They just can't stand ON the benches themselves. Thanks to Coach Felton and his class for putting a great video together for me to share with our students! I'll be at tonight's game against Southwest DeKalb cheering for our Bulldogs! Our Varsity Softball team is playing at Chamblee and our Varsity Volleyball team is playing at the Weber School. Go Bulldogs!
Mark your calendar . . . I will be hosting a virtual Town Hall for Principal Updates on September 29th at 7pm. I'll be sharing information on our new grading system, Infinite Campus, as well as changes to IB/AP testing and much more! I'll send a specific eBlast with the webinar link as well as a Google Form to submit your Q&A in advance. Ask me anything and I'll try my best to get the answers you need!
I hope you have a great long-weekend filled with family and friends!
Rochelle L. Lofstrand, Principal
Decatur High School
Wednesday, September 7th
DHS has grown so much that we’ve decided to do Curriculum Night virtually this year. This communication provides a brief overview of what Curriculum Night will look like. We’ll continue to communicate details as we approach the event.
Each teacher will create one video link using Google Meet. They will email this link to all students and parents and guardians the week before Curriculum Night. We will also post a list of these links alphabetically by teacher in the Parent Portal during the week of Curriculum Night. These links will not be posted publicly to protect the security of each Google Meet. As a parent, all you need to participate is a computer, phone, or other device that allows you to view video. Having a device with a camera and/or microphone is ideal, but not necessary.
We do not want technology to be a barrier to participation for any family or parent. If you do not have technology available to participate, please contact Ms. Jules Shelkoff at email@example.com or 404-371-3601 x 2130 so that we can reserve you a computer in our library that evening.
Each class will last ten minutes. We’ve scheduled five minutes between classes to allow parents and guardians to connect to their next class link.
6:30-6:40 1st Period
6:45-6:55 2nd Period
7:00-7:10 3rd Period
7:15-7:25 4th Period
7:30-7:40 5th Period
7:45-7:55 6th Period
8:00-8:10 7th Period
Teachers will prepare a short presentation and many will save a few minutes for general questions. Curriculum night is a time to learn about each of your student’s classes. If you need to have an individual conference with one or more of your student’s teachers, please reach out to those teachers directly to schedule a time to talk one on one.
This year school breakfast and lunch are no longer free unless a family qualifies for free/reduced lunch. School lunches have been free for the past two year because of COVID Cares funding. This has now stopped - https://www.fns.usda.gov/cn/2022-23-parent-faqs. All families should look at the criteria to see if they qualify for free/reduced meals -https://www.csdecatur.net/Page/4670.
Also, don't forget to log into the Parent Portal to put money on your students' account or send a check/cash. See the new meal pricing below.
Attendance Procedures for 2022-2023 School Year
Dear DHS families,
Please read these attendance procedures carefully. If you have any questions, please email Mr. Michael Scott (firstname.lastname@example.org).
We hope that in the 2022-2023 school year, we can continue to improve student attendance as we continue to adjust to living with the constant presence of COVID-19. If your student is having a hard time getting to school, please reach out to their counselor and administrator. Contact info can be found here.
We will begin the attendance robocall for students who are absent from school on Monday, August 8th. We hope to have Parent Portal push notifications for attendance available soon.
If your student misses a day or more for an illness, the death/illness of a family member, a religious holiday, or another excused reason, please fill out this form. If you would like us to consider a non-standard reason to excuse an absence, please reach out directly to Mr. Scott at least three weeks in advance of a planned absence.
If you need to check out your student, please fill out this form. We ask that all students be picked up from the front doors off of N. McDonough. Please ring the buzzer for assistance and be prepared to show a photo ID to our attendance office staff.
Timely Arrival to School
In order to be considered on-time, a student must be in class by 8:35 am. Students who do not meet this criterion must check in at the attendance office. Students who are late two or more times in a week without an excuse will be assigned after school detention on either Wednesday or Thursday (student's choice) of the following week.
We expect students to be in every class every day. Students who skip class will be referred to their administrator every time they skip. This year, we will assign Saturday Detention to students on the third time they skip class. Students with Saturday conflicts for religious reasons will be assigned an alternate consequence.
Congratulations! College Board National Recognition Program Award
The following student(s) have been awarded recognition (award key below) because of their academic achievements in school and outstanding performance on the PSAT/NMSQT®, PSAT™ 10, and/or AP® Exams. They've accomplished these milestones during an immensely demanding period of their high school career. We couldn't be more delighted to share this great news.
Abel Hailu: NAARA
Aracelio Vazquez: NHRA
Brian Chilik: NHRA
Brooke Cobb: NAARA
Coen Brant: NAARA
Eliana Salcedo: NAARA, NHRA
Laolu Oguneye: NAARA
Lucas Parrilla: NHRA
Mady Hampton: NAARA
Marina Caobianco: NHRA
Ryan Cabrera-wiser: NHRA
Spencer Wilson: NAARA
Sydney Jeffrey: NAARA
Travis Stroud: NAARA
•National African American Recognition Award = NAARA
•National Hispanic Recognition Award = NHRA
•National Rural and Small Town Award = NRSTA
•National Indigenous Award = NIA
Bark For Schools
When schools give students access to devices and online accounts, an incredible world of learning opportunities opens up — as well as potential dangers. Digital safety is critically important to CSD, which is why we are now using Bark for Schools to help us protect our students both online and in real life.
Bark monitors student use of Google Suite for signs of potential issues like:
Threats of violence
Alerts at the first signs of danger
When possible dangers arise on school-issued accounts, Bark for Schools sends school teams, typically administrators and counselors, alerts so they can address the situation in a timely manner. These alerts also give us insights that help us promote the well-being of the entire student body.
Bark for Schools will be implemented this school year in grades 3-12 beginning September 6, 2022.
IB DP Junior Family Info Night Webinar
We hosted a virtual information session on August 18th from 6-7 PM giving families detailed information about the IB Certificate Programs offered here at DHS, the CP, and the DP. See webinar link below if you were not able to attend.
Here is a link to the webinar:
Here is a link to the slideshow:
Each fall semester the gifted review team looks at existing student data to discuss students’ needs and determine if further evaluation for gifted identification is needed. If you are interested in having the team discuss your child’s needs, you may complete a Recommendation for Review Form and turn it in to the Gifted Specialist, Ms. Gonzalez, before October 5th. No additional information is needed. For more detailed information about the review process and to obtain a copy of the Recommendation for Review Form, please contact Jennifer Gonzalez or visit the following website: https://www.csdecatur.net/Page/581.
Save the Date! - Spirit Night - September 8th
Decatur High School is having a fundraiser at City Barbeque Decatur on September 8th! Order online or in person and enjoy some BBQ—we’ll get 20% of sales from everyone who shares this post or uses our fundraiser code, FUNDA, when they order at https://www.citybbq.com/order or in the City BBQ app! Checkout the image on how to make sure the promo code is applied when ordering online. We hope to see you there and we hope this can be a fun place where people can socialize.
If you are not able to come in the evening, you can go at lunch. Just be sure to enter the code, FUNDA.
All the money fundraised will support the Blue and Gold Squad. Blue and Gold Squad matches our flag football, football players and cheerleaders with our CSD teachers and staff who have weekly check-ins with them, celebrate them at events, and surprise them with snacks on game day. We have close to 100 CSD faculty/staff sponsoring over 130 athletes through this program.
National Honor Society (NHS) Applications
By Friday September 9th, NHS applications will be emailed to juniors and seniors who have a 3.7 GPA or above. Current members need not reapply.
If you have any questions, please email Ms. Katrina M. Walker at email@example.com.
Senior Recognition Ads
This is the perfect time to purchase a Senior Ad and send your senior off with the memories of the past and some wise words for the future!! Please see the Jostens website for more information. The final due date to purchase a Senior Ad is October 31th. Space is limited and on a first-come, first-serve basis, so get your order in now! When you purchase an ad, you will receive an email on how to submit your words and pictures electronically to the yearbook staff. If you have any questions please email the staff at firstname.lastname@example.org
CSD Athletics News and Updates
DHS/BHMS Swimming & Diving Interest Meeting, 9.8
All students and parents interested in learning more about our Swimming & Diving program at Decatur High and Beacon Hill Middle Schools should plan to attend the interest meeting scheduled for September 8th. The meeting will take place in the BHMS Cafeteria and begin at 6pm. If you have any questions, please contact Coach Buckley (DHS) email@example.com or Coach Randall (BHMS) firstname.lastname@example.org
Decatur Bulldog Booster News
Next DBB Meeting: Sept. 12
Decatur Bulldog Boosters is made up of parents and guardians who plan fun events, build Bulldog spirit and raise money to support 750 student athletes on 25 teams representing 17 sports at DHS and BHMS. We’re always looking to expand our team. Join us at our next meeting in the DHS Performing Arts Center (PAC) hospitality suite at 6:30 p.m.
New Bulldog Spirit Wear
T-shirts, hats, football jerseys, flags, pennants and more. Come by the Booster table at home football games to load up on new Bulldog swag or shop online HERE.
Renew your DBB membership to purchase your GoFan ticket package in time for the game. Tickets are shareable among family members for game admittance and those purchasing at the Family Booster level and above will receive a free spirit item.
Concession Help Needed
Watch the game while helping to raise money for Decatur Athletics. Sign up HERE for both JV and/or varsity football games. More opportunities will be available throughout the year.
DHS and BHMS Volleyball Teams Show Well in Jamboree
Congratulations to our DHS and BHMS Volleyball Teams. All three teams played great on Monday in their playdate against the Pythons of Paideia. Our JV team started the evening with back-to-back wins. Everyone contributed to the team's success. Our Beacon Hill team utilized all 24 rostered players to compete strongly in three games. Finally, after falling short in Game 1, our Varsity Bulldogs regrouped to win Games 2 and 3. The Bulldogs were exceptional defensively, hustling and diving to collect every ball, and were aggressive at the net to win point after point.
Thanks for all of the fans who came out to support our teams. Upcoming home games:
Tuesday, 9.06 - Varsity v. Lithonia/Arabia Mountain - 5:30 (home)
Thursday, 9.08 - JV/Varsity @ Pace - 5:30 (away) - Beacon Hill v. Pace - 5:30 (home)
Next PTSA Meeting - In Person - DHS Learning Commons
DHS SLT News
Next SLT Meeting
CSD Strategic Plan Input Session and Survey
Please make plans to join us for the Strategic Plan Community Input Session on September 6th at 6:30 pm in the Beacon Hill Middle School cafeteria. This meeting is open to all staff, students, parents, and community partners. This session will be the primary input gathering meeting for stakeholders to share their vision for what CSD can become in the next five years. We look forward to seeing you there!
If you are unable to attend this session, click here to participate in the survey.
Superintendent Search Community Conversation
he City Schools of Decatur Board of Education values input and feedback. The community is invited to engage in a facilitated conversation to share feedback for consideration as the Board prepares to develop the leadership profile for the Superintendent position. The Board is excited to offer two in-person opportunities for the community to engage and share their thoughts. You may attend either September 14, 2022, or September 28, 2022. A survey will be available for those unable to participate in one of the in-person events.
Although it is not required to attend, we are asking for anyone wishing to attend one of the in-person sessions to please register via this form.
Registering ahead of time will help us better plan the events and breakout sessions.
Session One: Wednesday, September 14, from 6-7:30 pm in the Decatur High School cafeteria.
Session Two: Wednesday, September 28, from 6-7:30 pm in the Decatur High School cafeteria.
DHS Cheerleading Minicamp Fundraiser
The DHS Cheerleaders are hosting a minicamp to help promote Bulldog Spirit while raising funds to support the DHS cheer program.
If your child is between the ages of 4-12 and wants to experience cheering in the Homecoming parade and before the Homecoming Football game, sign up today for the minicamp!
Camp dates: September 12 - 14 Minicamp 4:30 - 6:00 pm
September 29 Practice and Mini Camp Swag Pick-Up 4:30 - 6:00 pm
Parade and Game date: September 30
DHS Colorguard Experience
The DHS Colorguard is hosting a youth night on Friday, September 9, for kindergarten through 8th-grade students who would like to participate with the Marching Band Color Guard for a gameday experience.
School Nutrition Updates
1) Parents of students with special diets or allergy concerns should submit a new medical statement each year. Please contact Monique Breedlove at email@example.com or (470) 237-0368 ext. 7608 to update your student’s records or for additional information.
2) CSD School Nutrition continues to experience supply chain issues that may influence menu changes. Menu changes may not be updated online as they occur. However, we will work to substitute a like item to the best of our ability.
3) September 6-9, eat a rainbow at lunch! See the picture for information.
Parent Literacy Events
The Teaching and Learning Department is excited to host several parent-focused literacy events this school year. The September sessions are listed below. Stay tuned for information about additional programs scheduled for the remainder of the school year.
September 15 at 4:00 pm: American Reading Company (ARC) Virtual Parent Education: Comprehensive Literacy for Turbulent Times - The Power Behind a Knowledge Building Curricula
If you have any questions about these events, please contact the Teaching and Learning Department at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Connection Sessions are conversations between CSD's Equity Director, various invited guests, and the CSD POGM* community. During each session, community members are introduced to a person who is integral to supporting the school system while we discuss thoughts, interests, and concerns regarding City Schools of Decatur. Each session uses a racial equity lens - always asking the question - "What does race have to do with this?"
These sessions may not always have the answers, but they provide an opportunity for members of Decatur's POGM community (as well as all others) to explore perspectives, pose questions, and share thoughts.
Each meeting starts at 6 pm. Access it by using the following link: https://tinyurl.com/2yuj2tbs.
September TBD, 2022 - Adena Walker, Chief of Human Resources, CSD
October 17th, 2022 - Billy Heaton, Principal, Talley Street
November 14th, 2022 - Courtney Burnett, Chief of Staff, CSD
December 19th, 2022 - Karen Newton-Scott, Principal, FAVE
* People of color, despite being minoritized in the US, are a global majority. Thus, previously entitled BIPOC Connection Sessions, the name of this event is now Connection Sessions for POGM (People of the Global Majority). There is conflict regarding the use of the term BIPOC and this article details many relevant concerns. In short, the term BIPOC, which stands for Black, Indigenous, and Other People of Color, elevates some cultures over others in a way that does not reflect the respect each culture deserves.
Special Education Parent Engagement- September Meeting
disAbility Link - Empowering Youth
Mr. William Thomas, Youth & Diversity Supervisor for disAbility Link, will give an overview of the services and supports offered through the Empowering Youth program for youths ages 14-29. disAbility link provides but is not limited to employment support, self-advocacy, social activities, and peer support.
Target Audience: Parents of students with disabilities ages 14-22 years old
Date: September 15
For more information, please see the August Welcome Back Flyer.
Community Partner Announcements and Updates
EVERYONE’S INVITED to our FREE concert at Legacy Park on Saturday, September 10th from 4-8 pm with The Sundogs and JohnBoy and SurroundSound! Opening artists are DHS seniors Nate Helfrich and Payton Kashdan. There will be kids’ activities and student groups selling drinks and treats. DEF is celebrating 20 years in the community, and we want you there! Bring your own picnic and enjoy an evening with your family and friends!
Would you make a great tutor, mentor or coach for a Decatur student? We’ve got spots available for all those types of positions! Make a big impact in as little as 1-4 hours per month, depending on the role you choose. Does your high schooler need volunteer hours? Tutoring is a great way to accomplish that, and high schoolers make great tutors! Go to www.decatureducationfoundation.org/mentoring to learn more and sign up.
MADISON AVE DERBY - REGISTRATION OPEN
Don't miss your chance to be a part of one of Decatur's most iconic neighborhood events! Driver registration is now open for the 11th Annual Madison Avenue Derby, the non-motorized racing event where amateur racers of all ages design and build human-powered soapbox cars to compete against the clock in a downhill race!
Join the excitement as a racer or spectator on October 15, 2022, for a day of family-friendly fun - proceeds from the event this year go to support the Friends of Refugees! REGISTER TO RACE NOW