Dalton Public Schools Celebrate American Education Week

Wednesday, November 20, 2013
Park Creek Kindergartener Xander Sane gets his photo taken with Dalton Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Jim Hawkins during American Education Week.
Park Creek Kindergartener Xander Sane gets his photo taken with Dalton Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Jim Hawkins during American Education Week.

During American Education Week, kindergarten students in Dalton Public Schools got to practice what it felt like to be a graduating senior.

Every kindergarten-aged child in the system got to don either a red or white graduation gown and have their photo taken with DPS Superintendent Dr. Jim Hawkins. The students received a book “Look Out Kindergarten, Here I Come!” by Nancy Carlson. Each student will also receive a copy of the photo with the Class of 2026 logo as a memento of the event.  The photos are meant to promote the goal of graduating from high school and preparing for college and career, and the books encourage reading and literacy.

The children made their way carefully over to Hawkins with yards of extra fabric from the gowns billowing around their small frames. Mr. Hawkins greeted each child by asking their name, and explained what they would be doing in the photo.

“We’re playing dress up like you were a big senior in high school 12 years from now,” he would say. Mr. Hawkins would also tell the student that to get to that milestone, they would have to read many books.

“This goes with college career awareness,” said Mr. Hawkins. “It gets them actually thinking about graduation. You start at the beginning with the ending in mind.”

Six-year-old Brookwood student Charles Whittle said his graduation year of 2026 seems like a long way off, and he was a little nervous before taking the photo with Dr. Hawkins. “I was happy and nervous,” Charles said about getting his photo taken. “I felt like I was really graduating.”

Kindergarten teacher Dana Baxter said the earlier the kids start thinking about graduating, the better. “It’s a good way to plant that seed,” Ms. Baxter said. “They’ll have this photo as a reminder, ‘Oh, yes, I’m supposed to graduate.’”

Mr. Hawkins hopes that taking these photos will give students an end goal. “The best indicator as a school system is graduation numbers,” he said.

Merit Badge College Held At Chattanooga State

Now in its 17th year, Chattanooga State Community College sponsored the annual Merit Badge College for 155 Boy Scouts and 40 Boy Scout leaders from the Cherokee Area Council on March 17. This day-long event provided an opportunity for scouts to earn one of 15 badges focused on STEM-related activities in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. Scouts had a choice ... (click for more)

Woolfitt Awarded Plattner Award For Poetry

Dr. William Woolfitt, assistant professor of creative writing at Lee University, has won the Appalachian Heritage Denny C. Plattner Award in Poetry for his poem “Glassworks Hot Room as Pentecostal Church.”  Kenneth and Elissa May Plattner established the Denny C. Plattner Awards in 1995 to honor their late son, Denny, and his love for writing. The awards are presented to ... (click for more)

Signal Mountain Council Debating Future Of Mountain Center; Vice Mayor Gee Goes Off Council After Marrying And Moving Out Of Town Limits

A discussion regarding the Mountain Arts Community Center lease and memorandum of agreement with a non- profit organization that has been formed with a proposed to manage it took place at the Signal Mountain town council meeting Friday afternoon. City Manager Boyd Veal had created a document for the purpose of starting a discussion and to identify how the council would like to move ... (click for more)

Students OK After Bag Containing Meth Found At Nolan Elementary

Officials say students at Nolan Elementary School on Signal Mountain are okay after discovering a bag that contained meth. The incident happened on Friday afternoon during a reading fair.  Principal Dr. Shane Harwood sent this message to parents: "Good Afternoon Nolan Families - We wanted to share some information related to an event that has taken ... (click for more)

Tax All County Property Owners Once For School Safety

Our School Board, Sheriff Hammond, school administrators and the community are thoughtfully considering how to maintain safety in classrooms. Currently, discussions indicate more funding will be needed to ensure school safety. If schools are not safe and more money will change that, by all means let’s move to fix the problem.   There are many caring and knowledgeable ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Saturday Funnies

I don’t make much of a secret that I hated every single second of the short time I spent in college or that I never took a journalism class. Instead what I know about writing was taught by a far greater collection of experts than you can find on any college campus. Andy Rooney, for example, was a genius with a dry humor who lectured to me almost every Sunday night for about 30 years. ... (click for more)