Wildcat Growl

August 21, 2022

Our Vision:

De Soto High School ensures all students learn at a high level and have a positive sense of belonging, developing each student to be ready for their future.

Principal's Message

Wildcats and Families,

We have had a great start to the 2022-2023 school year. it was nice to see all of our students back in the building. On Wednesday, we welcomed our 9th-grade students to DHS - the Class of 2026. They started the day with a long-standing DHS tradition - the gauntlet. They ended the day having a Class of 2026 picture taken wearing their new "Forever Green" T-shirts.

On Thursday, we welcomed just over 1000 students for the first full day of school. Our seniors met during seminar in the new Performing Arts Center and were asked to make the most of their last 163 days of high school. We are excited to see their leadership in action.

On Friday, we held a fun-filled all-school assembly, with performances by our Wildcat Drum Line, DHS Cheerleaders, and the Diamond Dancers. We played games, learned cheers, and watched enthusiastic new staff members participate in a spirit-wear fashion show/interpretive dance 'competition'. Congratulations to Mr. Koertner for the win!

Over the next few weeks, we will introduce all twelve of our new DHS staff members. This week, we will introduce three. Let's welcome Mr. Koertner, who joins our Science department, teaching Chemistry and Physical Science. Mrs. Floyd, joins our Math department, teaching Integrated Math 1 and Honors Integrated Math 2. Mrs. Riley, joins our CTE department, teaching Newspaper and Yearbook. Please join us in welcoming them to our school community.

Schedule Change Requests: Students who would like to request a schedule change will have to fill out the Schedule Change Request Form, which will be available in Student Services on Monday, August 22nd. A list of open/available courses will be published outside Student Services on that day. The deadline to turn in a Schedule Change Request Form is 3:00 pm on Tuesday, August 23rd.

Parent Information Night: DHS will host Parent Information Night at 6:00 pm on Thursday, August 25th. We will begin the evening with a brief welcome in the Main Gymnasium, then parents are invited to follow their student's schedules to hear basic information about their classes from teachers. It will be important for parents to bring a copy of their student's schedule that includes room numbers. We hope you will be able to join us.

Fall Fest and Mixer: On Friday, August 26th, Fall Fest returns to DHS! The fall sports showcase and multi-activity event will take place in various locations across our campus. Everyone is invited. The first event starts at 5:00 pm. Bring your entire family to join in on the fun.

After Fall Fest, the DHS Student Council is hosting an all-school Mixer in the Union and Commons from 9:00 pm to 10:30 pm. This dance is for DHS students only. Information is in the flyer included below.

Senior Parents: If your senior is in a fall activity (volleyball, football, cross country, girls golf, boys soccer, girls tennis, cheer, dance, or band) and you would like to purchase an ad in the fall sports program, please complete this form. If you have questions, contact athletic director Michelle Mages at mmages@usd232.org. August 26th is the deadline for submitting these ads!

District Student Advisory: The District Student Advisory Team is a group of students that meet regularly with the superintendent to discuss a variety of topics that impact students. The Team is made up of two students from each grade from both De Soto High School and Mill Valley High School. At the beginning of each school year, two freshmen from each school are selected from those that apply. Membership on the Team is a four-year term. However, membership is contingent on remaining a student in good standing. Interested 9th-grade students need to complete an application (included below), and turn it into the Main Office before 3:00 pm, September 2nd.

WorkKeys Registration: What are the benefits of the WorkKeys assessment? The WorkKeys is an assessment given on Wednesday, November 2nd, free of charge to juniors, and is accepted at many 2-year colleges and trade schools. Students who successfully complete the WorkKeys Assessments can earn the National Career Readiness Certificate. A student's score report provides a better understanding of job skills and increases the chances of a student matching their skills to the right job.

You can sign your student up here to take the WorkKeys Test: The deadline to register is 3:30 pm on Thursday, August 25th. For additional information or if you have questions, please contact Cathryn Monroe, School Improvement Specialist, at cmonroe@usd232.org.

Thanks, and have a great week.

Sam Ruff


De Soto High School

Parent information Night August 25th

To find out more click here

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Attendance Procedure and Tips

We want to share some important information and reminders for parents. During the summer, we added a new Attendance Office to the north student entrance (door #21). This new student-only entrance/exit will be where students should be dropped off or picked up during the school day (7:50 am - 2:55 pm). Visitors will continue to use the Main Entrance on the south side of the building.

Please remember to call DHS, preferably before 10:00 am on the day of an 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 attendance office when they return from the appointment.

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Wildcat Nation

Click here for the latest on anything activities or sports related.

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 a self-directed 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.

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School Meals

School meals for the 2022-2023 school year will revert back to standard pricing. Meals for all students will no longer be free because federal waivers were not extended. Only students/families who qualify financially will be eligible to receive free or reduced-price meals for the 2022-2023 school year. Families may complete an Application for Free or Reduced Price School Meals online at skyward.usd232.org or by completing a paper copy. If a family has already received communication that their child(ren) qualifies for free or reduced-price meals, a Consent for Disclosure/Waiver must be completed in order to receive a reduction in school fees or transportation.
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Follow us on Twitter

Click here to follow DHS on Twitter: @DeSotoWildcats

DHS Band Student News

NAfME All-National Ensembles

Each year, students across the country that are selected to their All-State groups (band, choir, orchestra, etc.) are eligible to audition for the All-National ensembles. This year, we had two DHS students selected! Nic Weaver was selected for the third consecutive year as a member of the All-National Jazz Band. Aidan Hamer was selected as a member of the All-National Orchestra. They will both travel to Washington, D.C. in November to participate in the national conference with the top band students from around the country. Please congratulate them when you see them next week.

KMEA Performance Group

Last year, the DHS Wind Ensemble was selected to perform in the Kansas Music Educators Association (KMEA) In-Service Workshop, the top honor that a band in Kansas can receive. This year, the DHS Jazz Combo has been selected to perform! We are one of two combos from Kansas that were chosen through a blind audition process and we are looking forward to representing our district again. Students that will be performing include Cole Bichelmeyer, Nick Budimlija, Kellan Flynn, Aidan Hamer, Kelsey O’Donnell, and Nic Weaver. We’re very proud of their hard work!

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Green & White Calendar

Click here for school calendar and bell schedule

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Driver's Education Classes

Click here to find out more information and sign up.

Cat Booster Club

The Cat Booster Club works to support all of our students at DHS. They provide teacher grants for classroom needs, support Gradfest, assist school activities in fundraising, organize Teacher Appreciation Week, and fund scholarships to graduating seniors. They are able to do all of this by selling spirit wear and donating their time in the concession stands. We are so appreciative of them. The membership drive for this year is currently underway, with multiple levels to choose from. Check out their website - here.
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Note from the Counselors:

DHS Counselors and Social Worker

Crissy Johns (A-G): CJohns@usd232.org

Abbey Heller (H-N): aheller@usd232.org

Kaitlin Britt (O-Z): KBritt@usd232.org

Joe Kordalski (Social Worker): Rkordalski@usd232.org

Technology Help Desk

Having issues with district provided technology? Click here to get in touch with K12.

Securly App

Parents can have peace of mind in knowing your student’s search history and time on their device. See your student’s online activity in real-time and catch up with weekly email snapshots by signing up with the Securly app. Follow the link for more information and directions.


Text Alerts

Sign up to be notified of school closers and other alerts within the district.