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Conversation with you

by Dr. Booth's Blog

Posted on October 12, 2016

Hello DeKalb America,

I am glad that we have this forum to be able to share ideas, questions, accolades and concerns. It is my goal for everyone in the district to feel a sense of openess and transparency of the district. We operate for one reason – Care for Children. Help me help them. 

Dance made a post.
Posted: 02-16-2017

Why is the daddy daughter dance not a formal dance this year? Little girls like to dress up and dance with their fathers.

John Booth made a post.
Posted: 02-17-2017

Dear Dance,

Actually there is a good reason for the change. Last year we had a Mother/Son dance and there were some interactive games and other things activities that allowed for quality time with each other. The girls can still wear dresses if they choose but we are going to change the format somewhat to add more activities. Our goal is to provide a richer experience with Fathers and Daughters.

student made a post.
Posted: 03-03-2017

I would like to thank you for making the school a better place i cant imagine a school that could have great statistics and engaging technology followed up by modern design other than Dekalb i love how this schools is almost perfect . the lunches are good and the teacher help us stay engaged.b once again, Thankyou.

John Booth made a post.
Posted: 03-03-2017

Dear Student,

Thank you very much. I want you to know that this is very much a group effort of which I play a very small role. But it is an extraordinary place to be isn't it? And for all of you reading this I promise I did not write or cause to have the previous comment written for us. :)

John Booth made a post.
Posted: 03-20-2017

I have a student who has made a couple of comments about a particular class. To all students I would like to say that if you have an issue you and/or your parents need to visit with the teacher and if that doesn't help the situation then visit with Mr. Burgin or Mr. Hensley. Usually that should solve any issue you might have. If it doesn't then set up an appointment with me and I'll be glad to visit with you.

John Booth made a post.
Posted: 03-21-2017

Sometimes this Blog is frustrating for me because there are comments made that I would like to answer but cannot because this is a public domain. Also, change and knowing what might be happening behind the scenes can take time to be brought to light. Just know this. Having the best academic program for our students is paramount for me. We will continue to do everything legally, morally, ethically and financially we can to provide that program.

CONNIE made a post.
Posted: 05-05-2017

I want to say a job well done at the DMS Athletic Banquet. This was the first time to ever come to a athletic banquet. I am so impressed on how each student is recognized for their participation. I have nothing but good to say about each coach my daughter has ever had. She isnt one of the strongest players but her coaches encourage her and build her up. They dont make her do anything she doesnt feel comfortable with. I know if it wasnt for the praise she would even participate. I also impressed how the Athletic Boosters work together. I can't say that for every organization. I believe strongly treating everyone fair and making these kids feel good and want to stay in athletics or wherever they may be.. Build these students up so they feel like they are doing something!

John Booth made a post.
Posted: 05-08-2017

Thank you Connie for your kind comments. We do have a great coaching staff who care about students. I am continually please how all of our people embrace "We Can Because We Care."

school goals made a post.
Posted: 07-15-2017

When will the school goals be updated? What are the goals for 2017?

John Booth made a post.
Posted: 07-17-2017

Thank you for reminding me, I dropped the ball on that one. They are now posted.

Posted: 07-18-2017

I was looking at the board minutes, and noticed a few months missing. can you get those posted? thanks
Dec, Jan, and I think May

John Booth made a post.
Posted: 07-20-2017

Dear Board Meeting, they should all be up on the site now and it be current. We did not meet in December so there is not a meeting posted. However if in the future we have missed a meeting please feel free to contact my office and ask us to e-mail or send you a copy of the minuets.

Posted: 07-27-2017

As I look around I see a lot of schools in our area really taking interest in getting the younger kids involved and even putting a lot emphasis in Jr High athletics. New Boston is holding a football camp (free) to teach basic skills and such for grades 1-9. Coaches hold this camp. They are even involved in the little league football. Redwater has volleyball for girls grades 5-12. They too had a camp. They have a summer volley ball league the girls play in. Oh and their softball coach has started a league for girls ages 7-14. This is to build a foundation. Just makes me wonder why DeKalb Athletic dept does not try to build a foundation starting with younger kids in athletics. It is obvious we do not put any emphasis on Jr high or JV athletics not mention getting involved with grades lower than 7th. Seems we wait until the kids are old enough for varsity to even care, but then our competition is ahead of the game because of the foundation built.

John Booth made a post.
Posted: 08-02-2017

Dear Athletic Department: The reason I have this BLOG is to improve communication with the community. In fact, your comments prove just how much this is needed. Apparently we have done a horrific job communicating all that we do with our young athletes. Without spending too much time on the past just let me say that we are light years ahead of where we were five years ago. The following are some of the activities we have added for our young students. (1) Pre-athletics is a program for all 6th grade students. The girls are taught by one current varsity coach and two very successful former varsity coaches. The boys are taught by a current varsity coach and two varsity assistant coaches. They are taught basic skills in three major sports for 170 days.This is a significant amount of training by some very talented coaches. (2) Our JH athletic program has three former varsity coaches working on the girls side. I don’t think you will find that level of coaching for JH anywhere. All of our male coaches are available during the boys athletic period. In fact we are moving the boys class period to where they can be better trained by all the coaches. (3) In years past students had to choose between athletics and band because both were during the same class period. However, we changed that so students would be afforded the option to participate in both, strengthening both programs. (4) Our coaches have a conditioning program available for both male and female athletes grades 7-12 for the entire summer. (5) Coach May has held a clinic for the Youth Football coaches the past two years in an effort to build/coordinate that program. (6) Coaches have offered summer clinics in VB, Basketball, Softball and Baseball. (7) The community youth programs in DeKalb are excellent. The youth football program is very strong and works well with Coach May, our new VB coach has encouraged a summer program, the little dribblers groups work well, and our summer baseball and softball programs are some of the strongest in the area with our young kids playing deep into the playoffs. With all of this we continue to explore ways to improve our programs. For example, we are moving the boys JH period this year in an effort to improve what we are doing in that program.
I learned many years ago from one of the best coaches in the state, they said “the key to success is teaching fundamentals.” I agree fully with you about building foundations whether it is in reading, math, science, social studies, art, band, agriculture, or athletics without a strong foundation our students cannot be successful. Yes we care deeply about our students no matter the grade. To say “we don’t put any emphasis on Jr High or JV athletics” possibly means we have done a poor job of informing the community of all we do for our students

Mike made a post.
Posted: 08-15-2017

Are home schooled middle schoolers allowed to participate in athletic programs and conditioning classes?

John Booth made a post.
Posted: 08-18-2017

I am sorry no we cannot allow home school participation. The University Interscholastic League (the ruling body for our athletic program) states that all student athletes must be enrolled full time the school in which they participate.

3rd grade made a post.
Posted: 08-22-2017

I know school is just starting but I got something in my child's folder I am concerned about. I would think we push kids to succeed, and I know failure is part of that, but this seems like the teacher is saying my child will fail before they ever have a chance. I will quote what is in the note:

"I also do not discourage failure. I know that sounds unusual, but I want the kids to experiment with math and learn that failure is a natural part of life. its how they recover from failure (resiliency) that matters. Failure is really just a stepping stone to success."

that's just part of it, but I feel like this is saying my child will fail and lets see how they bounce back. I would like all kids to succeed no matter what it takes. just my thought.

John Booth made a post.
Posted: 08-23-2017

We too want “all kids to succeed no matter what it takes.” In fact, educational research suggests that a child failing and then overcoming builds confidence and self-esteem. I do not feel, however, that the teacher is expecting failure but her note is an effort to educate parents that students being perfect in their grades is not the goal, but failing occasionally on the way towards success, will be part of this class, as well as part of life.

I applaud our teachers for pushing out this initiative. There is a growing body of educational research called “Growth Mindset.” If you would like to learn more “Mindset: the new psychology of success” by Carol S. Dweck would be a great place to start.

Menus made a post.
Posted: 08-30-2017

Can you help get the cafeteria menu posted on line?

John Booth made a post.
Posted: 08-31-2017

Thank you for bringing this to my attention. TISD creates those and provides the link. We are in contact with them and they should get them fixed soon. How about the every child eats free program? We want to tip our hats to TISD for doing the paperwork to make this program possible. Also, please encourage your child to eat in the cafeteria even if they bring something from home. We need maximum participation in order to keep this program going.

Cafeteria made a post.
Posted: 09-12-2017

Can you help me? I am being told by my child that they are rushed to eat their lunch. said they are being told to hurry up and eat and go outside. I understand little kids start talking and are slow to eat but they have an allotted time so they should get to eat in that time frame without being rushed. What happens is they throw their food away and don't eat. can you please check into this.

John Booth made a post.
Posted: 09-12-2017

I am glad you asked this question so other readers will know the answer as well. Child nutrition is extremely important to us. We have worked hard to provide two quality meals to every student every day with out cost and have plenty time to eat those meals. When I asked Mrs. Lee, Elementary Principal this is what she said "Currently, all elementary students have a full 30 minutes to eat lunch. If they are not finished eating they can stay and finish their lunch, we have several that choose to do so." We all want our children to be well fed. However, if you don't think this is not an accurate representation of our lunchroom please come by and visit with Mrs. Lee or come to lunch with your child on me. We will be glad to have you.

BearMom made a post.
Posted: 09-14-2017

I just wanted to give a little shout out to our new elementary principal-Mrs. Emily Lee!!! In the midst of her hectic schedule she is taking (rather scheduling and finding) the time to meet with each staff member to hear concerns we may have and ask our opinion about the campus, etc. It may take her weeks, as the kids and other duties are far more important. She will still manage. It speaks highly of her character to do this as a one on one. Be it child, parent, or faculty member she is a great listener and prides herself on solving any problems that may arise. Glad she's on our team!!!

John Booth made a post.
Posted: 09-15-2017

I am very glad she's on our team as well! We have been fortunate since I have been here to have had 3 very good principals. Our exceptional elementary program is a reflection of their great work. Mrs. Lee's attention to detail is one example of the many leadership qualities she possesses. Not only does she fit into our culture of "We Can Because We Care" she epitomizes that culture.

Posted: 09-28-2017

is it possible for our band to hang around 10 more minutes after half time and play for our football players coming back on the field to start the 3rd quarter?

John Booth made a post.
Posted: 10-02-2017

Thank you for the idea. We are discussing some of the possibilities of how that might look and checking with other schools as to what they do.

Sappy Senior made a post.
Posted: 12-05-2017

Whoever's idea it was for the "Lunch With Dad" was an amazing one. I am truly excited for it! Thank-you!

(ps. The paper-towel dispenser in the girls bathrooms was a marvellous idea. Keep up the good work Dr. Booth!)

John Booth made a post.
Posted: 12-05-2017

Dear Sappy, What a fun name. Thank you for your comments. The "Lunch With Dad" started as a TISD food service idea. All campus' are taking part that day. Mr. Henslee is the one who came up with the idea to modify allowing students a longer lunch break and ability to leave campus. I too think its a great idea. I'm glad we got the dispenser fixed. If you have more ideas please feel free to e-mail or if you see me on campus just ask.

Agenda made a post.
Posted: 04-02-2018

Why was a different agenda posted than what was used in the school board meeting?

John Booth made a post.
Posted: 04-03-2018

I made a mistake.

DHS Student made a post.
Posted: 04-17-2018

The food in the cafeteria has gone downhill again. Students need a good meal while we are at school. The quality of the food was better the first half of school. It is also frustrating when the meal provided does not match up with what was listed on the menu. I can only eat popcorn chicken and under cooked food so many times a week. I really hope that the cafeteria can get better. Thanks for hearing my concern.

Athletics made a post.
Posted: 04-18-2018

I understand that the AD is new and inherited a bad situation, but it seems the girls program is still on the back burner. He has spoke with the boys, High school and Middle school, but has yet to do that to the girls. Especially middle school. Do you think he could show interest in them also? As of now they do not even know who he is.

John Booth made a post.
Posted: 04-18-2018

I think you high school students are ganging up on me, I've gotten several comments on the same subject. That's OK and I'm glad you are letting me know your thoughts. I want you to know that I hear what you are saying about the lunch room and the quality of food going downhill. I've addressed your comments with TISD and they have responded quickly. I think we will see an improvement. If not, please let me know.

John Booth made a post.
Posted: 04-28-2018

Dear Athletics,

C’mon you’ve gotta give the new coach a chance. He came in during the absolute busiest time of the year for an AD. However, since it’s taken me a little while to answer, let me tell you what he has done for the girls program. In his relatively short tenure he has hired a girls coordinator who will focus on the girls program, exclusively, and will also be the new head basketball coach. In addition, he has hired a new head softball coach. These hires take a tremendous amount of time to search and then interview several candidates looking for the person who will fit with us. To your original question, he has now visited with the MS girls.

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