From the Castle

Family Newsletter for Thomas Dale High School-October 2019

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Greetings from the Castle!

Knight Families and Community Members,


Can you believe it is already October?!?! Although the season turned to autumn, Mother Nature is still stuck in summer. With one month of the 2019-2020 school year in the books, you and your child have a pretty good idea of how things are going. I encourage you to engage in dialogue with your child about the hard work and dedication necessary for success. I encourage you to talk about study habits, organization, and time management. I also encourage you to reach out to us - whether your child's teacher, counselor, administrator, or office staff - so that we can better support and challenge your child to reach their potential, accomplish their goals, and be the absolute best version of themselves!

In this issue, I offer up three different conversations you can have with your child. Although the conversations are divided up by grade-level, you can engage in any of the conversations regardless of age!

I believe in you, your children, and our staff. We are working as hard AND smart as we can to deliver on the promise of Every Knight, Every Day! Let's DO this!!!


Don't forget to follow us on Twitter: @GoTDKnights, Facebook: Thomas Dale, Instagram: @GoTDKnights, and Snapchat: @GoTDKnights. Our website is updated regularly for more information:

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  • Class of 2021 (Juniors) Remind Group. Junior Class parents and students, please join the Class of 2021 Remind group to be up-to-date on all class activities. Click here:
  • Dale-Gates. Dale-Gates are BACK and BETTER THAN LAST YEAR!!! Join us for the next Dale-Gate of the year on October 11 at 5:30pm before the homecoming football game versus Meadowbrook! Food, fun, and family. What a great way to connect!
  • Thomas Dale is proud to be a high-quality public educational setting and center of the Chester community. Because of the nature of our service and purpose, there are a few reminders about what is not permitted on school grounds at any time: weapons, drugs, alcohol, and tobacco products of any kind (including vapor).
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Connect with Your Child

During Morning Meeting every Monday in Homeroom, our 10th-12th Grade Students engage in grade-level specific activities that align to our progression over 4 years to deliver on the promise of Every Knight, Every Day. We use most of this time to develop and sustain strong relationships. We do the same in our Freshman Seminar class for our 9th grade students.

We also use this time to implement a curriculum that is outside the realm of the basic requirements for graduation. To help you connect with your child and to give you content for dialogue, we intend to share those activities with you as well. This will allow you to extend the learning experience for your child, strengthen the home-school connection, and provide you with material to stay engaged in your child's life and education.

Here is this month's Sophomore Activity:

  • Take the John Tyler Community College Career Coach Assessment. Please ensure they take the "Detailed Assessment (60 Questions)" when they get to the site.
  • After taking the assessment and receiving the results, have them make a note of their top 3 to 5 choices for use later this year.
  • Engage in dialogue with your child about their top 3 to 5 choices and the implications over the next few days, weeks, months, and years.

Here is this month's Junior Activity:

  • Review THIS 6 Cs DOCUMENT with your child.
  • Have them review the 6 Cs and do the short reflective activity at the bottom of the document.
  • Engage in dialogue with your child about their strengths and opportunities for growth regarding our 6 Cs: Creativity, Critical Thinking, Communication, Collaboration, Citizenship, and Connection.

Here is this month's Senior Activity:

  • Review THIS DISPOSITIONS DOCUMENT with your child.
  • After reviewing the document, please watch THIS SHORT VIDEO from me regarding GRIT.
  • Engage in a reflective dialogue with your child regarding GRIT and talk about a time in your life when you exercised GRIT. Have your child share the same with you.

Connect with the Principal

Don't forget to mark your calendar for one of the "Coffee with the Principal" or "Sunset Snacks with the Principal" dates! See below for the dates.

Morning Coffees are held at 7am at the West Campus (use Door 9). Sunset Snacks are held at 7pm at the Main Campus (use Door 1).

I'd love to connect with you and learn about what's on your mind and in your heart!

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This Year's Bell Schedule

Our bell schedule reflects a commitment to high-quality instruction, support and challenge based on students' needs, and a focus on the social-emotional development of our Knights. Balancing the rigors of academics with the realities of teenage life in 2019 and beyond, we aim to provide a learning environment where students can pursue their goals, dreams, and personal pathways in a place that is welcoming, connected, and full of joy!

Please find the bell schedule for both Main Campus and West Campus below. As noted above, we will have a different bell schedule at the start of school. Any time we have an alternate schedule, we will use the newsletter and our social media outlets to communicate. Make sure you connect with us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat!

Did You Know?

CCPS is offering two great opportunities for Engagement for our Middle and High School students!

Sign up for MS STEAMworks or HS innovationLAB for October 19 & 26 at Thomas Dale HS or Tomahawk Creek MS. This program provides a variety of STEM courses to explore and engage in innovative opportunities beyond the classroom. Visit to learn more about classes and to register by October 13th. If you have questions, please email

Upcoming Events

Stay connected to OUR CALENDAR and mark yours!

October 1 - Specialty Center Information Night at CTC@Hull

October 1 - All-County Band Night at Meadowbrook

October 2 - Specialty Center Information Night at CTC@Hull

October 7-11 - Homecoming Week

October 8 - Powder Puff @ 6pm

October 8 - PTSA Meeting @ 6pm (Main Library, Door 3)

October 9 - Senior Class Meeting during Engagement (Cap and Gown Info)

October 9 - Coffee and Sunset Snacks with the Principal

October 11 - Early Release Day for Students (12pm)

October 11 - Dale-Gate and Homecoming Football Game vs Meadowbrook

October 12 - Homecoming Dance (7:30-10pm, Enter through Door 10)

October 14 and 15 - Underclassmen Picture Days

October 16 - PSAT Testing Day (Grades 9-11 are testing, Seniors will have Futures Day)

October 17 - Dr. Jones Book Club - Switch (2nd Meeting, Location TBD)

October 18 - Dale-Gate and Football Game vs Prince George

October 22 and 23 - Genius Hour (22nd-West, 23rd-Main)

October 23 - Junior Class Ring Ceremony

October 30 - School Clean-Up Volunteer Day (right after school)

October 31 - Chromebook Check

Stay In-the-Know! Click below for previous issues of From the Castle.