Wildcat Growl

August 30, 2019

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Future Ready Wildcats: Strong in Every Way

De Soto High School staff and students endeavor to model the following core values:


Principal's Message

Wildcat Students and Parents,

We want to welcome Megan O’Boyle, our new FACS, and Head Cheer Coach to DHS. Mrs. O’Boyle teaches Senior Symposium, Career and Life Planning, and Family Studies. We are excited that Megan is part of our team.

Thursday was the first Individual Plan of Study lesson for students at DHS. The lesson provided our students with an overview of what to expect this year with regards to planning for their future.

Today, Friday, August 30th is the first Wildcat Release of the year. Students that qualify will be released from school at 2:25 pm. Students must have a permission slip on file. Information about Wildcat Release can be found on our website.

The district is conducting scheduled delayed start days on September 18th and November 6th to help prepare should a delayed start be necessary due to inclement weather. This will allow the district to consider the logistics involved in postponing the start of the school day and help prepare families should this action occur.

The district is testing this plan based on the number of school closures caused by inclement weather during the last school year. The school day will end at its regular time on September 18 and November 6. Families are encouraged to make plans now to accommodate these scheduled delayed starts. For more information about the delayed start and calendar information visit: http://bit.ly/2M9zCnV

We hope to see you at Parent-Teacher Conferences. The conferences are held on Wednesday, September 25th from 3:30 PM – 7:30 PM, and September 26th from 9:30 AM – 8:00 PM. This is a great opportunity for parents to get early feedback and collaborate on the success of their student. Please note, teachers will be unavailable on Wednesday from 4:30 to 5: 00, and Thursday from 4:30 to 5:30 in order to eat. Thank you.

If your student needs academic assistance, we are providing Study Tables from 3:00 – 4:00 pm Monday through Thursday. Peer Tutors are available to assist your student.

As we continue to explore options, we are reaching out to see if any parents or community volunteers would be willing to speak to our students about your area of expertise or field. Please reach out to lhothan@usd232.org.

Thanks, and have a great weekend.

Sam Ruff

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Individual Plans of Study

This year, each student will be completing their Individual Plan of Study (IPS) on designated Thursdays during seminar via Canvas. Students completed their first lesson this week! The IPS Canvas course is tailored to students’ current grade level and contains lessons that are relevant to their current stage in high school. Some of the lessons include topics such as Personality Styles, Goal Setting, Admissions Testing, Career Exploration, FAFSA, Lifestyle Costs, College/Tech. School/Military options, etc. It is important to us that our students feel confident in the path that they choose after high school graduation and are informed on various aspects involving College & Career Planning. Parent involvement is a crucial part of post-secondary planning and we encourage you to have conversations with your student(s) about what they learn on IPS Thursdays!

Delayed Start Days

Click here for more information on the delayed start days.

National Honors Society

On September 18 at 6:30pm there will be a meeting in the Theater for all parents of Junior and Senior students who have a cumulative grade point average of 3.4 or above and who would like to apply for the National Honor Society this year. The meeting will provide an opportunity for parents to understand the application process. Prospective students should have received a letter concerning this meeting. If there are any questions, please contact Mrs. Reif (areif@usd232.org ) or Mrs. O’Neil (loneil@usd232.org).

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Important Information, Events, and Dates

Click this button for Important Information, Events, and Dates.

Homework Request Information

When your student is absent from school, please encourage your student to reach out to teachers requesting assignments missed due to the absence. Certainly parents can also reach out to teachers, but part of becoming an independent learner is communication, being organized and advocating for yourself. If your student is experiencing a longer term absence (a week or more), our counselors are available to assist in this process.

Study Tables

Study Tables:

De Soto High School is providing time and space for students to collaborate and study after school. Study Tables will take place in the Student Union Monday through Thursday from 3:00 pm until 4:00 pm. Students will have the opportunity to give and receive academic assistance from classmates. this supervised time is intended to support students in pursuit of academic success.

Important Notes from the Nurse


The Kansas Department of Health and Environment has implemented a new vaccination requirement for the 2019-20 school year. For the upcoming school year, all students entering into their junior year need one dose of the meningococcal vaccine if they were not vaccinated prior to their 16th birthday. They will need TWO doses if their first dose was before their 16th birthday.

I will be notifying families of any students that DO NOT have the required vaccines on file, or have a religious or medical waiver on file to exempt their student.

USD 232 has extended the timeline for the required documentation. This vaccine must be documented or a medical/religious waiver be on file for your student by October 14th, 2019.

If you have record that your student has had this vaccine, please send in a copy, email mfarverlightcap@usd232.org or fax (913-667-6251). If your student has not had this vaccine please schedule an appointment with your pediatrician to discuss this vaccine before October 14th.

You may look this information up on Skyward family access under Health Info choose “Display Options” next to your student’s first name, select “Show Vaccinations”. Skyward will display which vaccinations are deemed Noncompliant.

Thank you! Please let me know if you have any questions.

Nurse Lightcap

Vaccine requirements

To find out more on vaccine requirements for schools click here

Personal Electronic Devices

Related to our transition to the use of district-issued devices, we will implement a policy change in regard to the use of personal electronic devices at school. Effective for the 2019-20 school year, the use of personal electronic devices (mobile phones, smartphones, iPads, etc.) will be allowed only during passing periods and during lunch. The use of personal electronic devices in class will be prohibited. While this is a shift for our building and district (this change is noted in the DHS student/parent handbook), I am confident our students will adjust.

Attendance Procedure and Tips

We want to share some important information and reminders for parents. Please remember to call DHS, preferably before 10:00 am on the day of the absence, if your student is absent. You can also call in a prearranged absence ahead of time. The 24-hour attendance voicemail is 913-667-6259. We also ask that students missing school as a result of a physician/medical/dental appointment verify the appointment by turning in an appointment note/slip from the healthcare provider. This helps us ensure the absence is excused rather than considered as a parent request. Students can turn the note into the school office when they return from the appointment.


We are consistently looking for ways to improve traffic and pedestrian flow; increasing the safety of our students and saving you precious time. The DHS traffic pattern can be viewed on our website, here. A couple of items we need your assistance with:

Maximizing student drop-off line capacity

As you pull up to the south main entrance, pull forward as far as possible before letting children exit the vehicle. Many vehicles are stopping directly in front of the sidewalk that leads to the main entrance to let their children out. As a result, there is a considerable amount of space left open between that point and the end of the sidewalk. This is leading to traffic back up in the front circle in the mornings.

Picking students up in the afternoon

When you arrive at DHS in the afternoon to pick up your student, if you arrive before dismissal please pull as far forward along the sidewalk as possible. If a line is already established along the curb toward the student parking lot, please pull around the west side of the building in order to line up along the curb. This will prevent vehicles from needing to do a U-turn in the back parking lot where students are walking. We appreciate your assistance in advance.

If you need to also pick up a student from LTMS after school, please wait until the shuttle busses have made their way to Lexington Trails MS before using the back drive from DHS to LT.

Semester 1 Final Exams

Information regarding Semester 1 Final Exams dates and times.

JUUL Fact Sheet

JUULing: What Pediatricians and Families Need to Know

Helping Educate DHS Students about E-Cirgaretts

The use of electronic nicotine delivery systems (“e-cigarettes” or “vapes”) among high school students increased by 78% between 2017 (11.7%) and 2018 (20.8%).

De Soto High School is taking an active role to educate our staff, students and parents about the risks and harmful effects associated with teenagers and nicotine use.

Parents are an important part of the prevention process. Here is information from the Surgeon General for parents – Talking with Your Teen About E-cigarettes.


For information regarding DHS Graduation please click this button.

Step-by-Step Through the FAFSA

Seeking financial aid for college can be an intimidating process. To make this process less intimidating and easier to understand, the Johnson County Library is offering a program on the FAFSA at three different locations this fall:

Step-by-Step Through the FAFSA

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid is an essential tool when applying for scholarships, grants and loans for college. Filling out the FAFSA can be nerve-wracking and confusing. Don't Give Up! Jason Anderson, CommunityAmerica Credit Union's College and Career Consultant will walk you through the FAFSA line by line. This program will be presented at the following locations:

Tues, Sept 17th 6-7:30pm @ Blue Valley Library 9000 W 151st St, Overland Park
Wed, Sept 25th 6-7:30pm @ Antioch Library 8700 Shawnee Mission Pkwy, Merriam
Mon, Oct 7th 6-7:30pm @ Monticello Library 22435 W 66th St, Shawnee

Sandwiches and sides will be served starting at 5:30 pm. Register online https://www.jocolibrary.org/events or call 913-826-4600.

Please pass this information along to parents and students.
If you have any questions, feel free to email me at loweryd@jocolibrary.org.
Thank you for helping to promote this valuable program.

Message from Student Services

De Soto High School students are invited to attend the Shawnee Mission College Clinic on Wednesday, October 16th at 6:30 p.m. at Shawnee Mission East High School where over 200 colleges will be represented! You can find more information by clicking on the link below.


Upcoming College Fairs:

• September 16th, 6-8 pm: KC Metro College Fair at Olathe West High School

• September 30th, 6:00-8:00 pm: Kansas City Area Christian College Fair at Maranatha Christian Academy, Shawnee, KS.

• October 9th, 6:00-8:30 pm: De Soto College Planning Night at DHS

• October 16th, 6:30-8:30 pm: Shawnee Mission College Clinic at Shawnee Mission East

• October 22nd, 8:30-11:30 am and 5-7 pm: Kansas City National College Fair at KC Convention Center, KCMO

College Credit Deadlines Approaching:

Students who are enrolled in DHS Classes that count toward college credit, need to be aware of the upcoming deadlines.

  • Baker University: September 9th
  • JCCC: September 13th
  • College Algebra at JCCC: October 4th

For more information on each of these programs and how to enroll please click here.

KSU Engineering Nights:

K-State Engineering is offering free events in the Kansas City area for high school students who are interested in the engineering field. For more information and to register for the event please visit: http://engg.k-state.edu/engineering-night.

  • Thursday, September 12th: Burns & McDonnell, KCMO
  • Thursday, October 10th: Shoal Creek Golf Course, Liberty area
  • Thursday, November 7th: Kiewit, Lenexa, KS
  • Tuesday, November 12th: Stoney Creek Hotel and Conference Center, Independence, MO

Scholarship Information:

Looking for money to help pay for college? Check out the DHS Student Services Scholarship page! Throughout the year scholarships will be posted that are available to seniors. There is also a “Scholarship Search Tips” that can help aid the search process. Click here to go to the page.

College Visits:

If your student will be going on a college visit, students must fill out a College Visit Form. Forms are available in Student Services or online by clicking here. Students are to take the form with them on the day of the visit and bring it back signed by an admissions representative.

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Upcoming Extra-Curricular Events

Click this button to find our upcoming events throughout Wildcat Nation!

2019 Football Jamboree

DHS will be hosting a Football Jamboree on Friday, August 30th. School participating are De Soto, Blue Valley North, Olathe East, and Olathe Northwest. Click this button for more information.

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Recent Highlights

Mattress Fundraiser for DHS Band & Choir

Do you need to replace a bed in your home? Now is the time! The DeSoto High School Band & Choir Programs are hosting a one day Mattress Sale Fundraiser at DeSoto High on Saturday, October 26th from 10AM-5PM. There will be 30 different models on display for you to try from name brand companies like Beautyrest and Therapedic. Simply find a bed you like, and place an order at the event. All beds are brand new, available in all sizes, and come with factory warranties! There will also be pillows, sheets, mattress protectors, frames and even adjustable bases available as well! Best of all, prices are less than retail stores! Mention this announcement and receive free delivery with any mattress purchase!
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Wildcat Yard Signs

Order your Wildcat Yard Sign Now! Deadline for 2019 FALL Orders is Tuesday, September 3rd.

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Cats Closet Letter Jacket Orders

Please click button for details.

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