DHS does a great job with typical and gifted students. Students with learning difficulties or documented disabilities do not get the attention they need or an inclusive educations.(if they need significant assistance). The focus in this school system seems to be test scores and being one of the top schools districts in the state and nation. Students with learning challenges are not valued as other high scoring students are.
Students with significant disabilities are located in a separate area in the school. These students are not in typical classes unless it is lunch or possibly a related arts class. This model is archaic and the special education administration is out of date.
Years ago DHS sent these students to a DeKalb county school and prevented them from attending their neighborhood schools. Parents protested and this has changed.
When DHS took tuition students ,(which they no longer do), they would deny students with 504 plans and IEP's. Why? I can only conclude it was about students that could provide high scores. This is not an inclusive school. The schools focus is on test scores and not teaching students to be inclusive accepting community members.
Decatur City Schools have been a huge blessing for my two children, both of whom have attended since kindergarten, and are now 16 and 21. My older child got a scholarship to one of the top 3 art schools in the country after her extraordinary experience with her art teacher. She brought the most dedicated students to Florence, Italy one year, to study the Renaissance. My son is a Sophomore, and has finally earned a spot in AP classes--so he's getting a college-level education. The staff and administrators, as well as the teachers and counselor, the students and the parents, are part of my family. I moved into the district in 1997 because I was a starving newspaper reporter with two young children, and my fellow reporters told me it was the best public school system in the state. They were right. This is what schools and communities are supposed to be about--helping you raise your children. I was very blessed to discover Decatur--before it was the coolest foodie hipster music spot in the South! :)
Decatur High School has been an excellent school for my three children, one still attending and two excelling at top universities. We have found the leadership to be proactively seeking excellence, personally affirming of our children and making improvements when problems arise. We have found the English, Social Studies, and Communications teachers to be outstanding. My kids visit these teachers when they are home from college. I also appreciate the culture of general acceptance of all students regardless of ethnicity, social-economic class and gender. This is not a perfect school but a very good school with good staff actively moving in the right direction. Congratulations to leadership and staff. Keep up the good work.
Being a new student at the school, I can say my first year was wonderful. I recently moved to Decatur in the beginning of October and went to Decatur High School for the duration of the school year, the staff did a very good job of making me feel welcome and helping me if i was confused by anything. The IB curriculum is very interesting and I prefer it to the traditional teaching I was used to. I was put into a few classes that didn't seem to challenge me to the extent I had been in advanced classes at my previous school. The teachers are all very friendly and understanding, they were very eager to motivate their students and each had a unique way of teaching efficiently. So far I haven't had any trouble with anyone/anything. My only concern is going into this upcoming school year, my schedule was sent to me and I am very displeased with it, I am taking AP chemistry and was limited on elective classes and even so I wasn't put into any of the classes I signed up for and instead they have been replaced with PE classes that I am not fond of whatsoever. I will try to resolve my issues with my schedule, but even so this school has impressed me and I wouldn't want to go anywhere else -JP
As a nationally ranked school, DHS is by far one of the best Charter schools in all of GA. With challenging academic program, an extremely active community and dedicated students, this school provides all of the essential tools for every student to exceed no matter what social status, ethnicity, or sex.
This school is hghly ranked nationally and is situated in a very high performing school district. The superintendent, Dr. Edwards, has worked very hard to transform a struggling system of school with shrinking enrollment into a school system that is attracting more and more students every year. The school board works together well and has a strong focuse on the success of all students. If one pays close attention to all the changes that have made CSD and DHS strong you will find strong leadership at all levels.
Decatur High School is great! I graduated from the best private school in Atlanta, and the southeast, and it was very hard to think of my daughters having anything less than the best for their own education. However, I am finding that I could not be any more pleased if I was paying $20,000 a year per child. The IB curriculum is challenging and a refreshingly different approach. I anticipate my daughters graduating with an excellent foundation and with plenty of good options to continue their educations.
My son is in the tenth grade at Decatur High and has attended City of Decatur schools since Pre-k. I have been pleased with everything Decatur has to offer from academics to extra-curricular. I feel my son is being prepared for a successful transition from high school to college. The AP courses are so beneficial. A public school but as close to a private school environment without the costs.
Decatur has a good school system, active community involvement, strong financial support and a well intentioned focus on college preparation for high achieving students. Attempting to offer a great education for every student, the school forgot that every student is not the same. One path is currently offered for graduation. AP courses are the only alternative to that path. My struggling child was offered only more of the same for core classes (which left him without time for electives).
DHS is a great school. My oldest came to DHS her 10th grade year and was very far behind coming out of an APS HS. With the awesome support she received, she was able to catch up to her peers and was on the honor roll for her junior/senior years. There is tremendous support for students who are behind or get behind. The teachers communicate very well and most are there before and after school for additional help if needed. I am so glad I moved to this school district. My 2nd child is a senior now and is progressing very well and we expect her to go to Emory after graduation.
Incredible first year experience. Every day it gets better and better with school curriculum, class room projects and overall support! Plenty of students with great attitudes and a supportive learning environment. Excellent sports programs and community support.
Both my children received the finest education I could have ever hoped for through this excellent school system. They are small and it's like having the advantage of a private school through a public system.
I only attended Decatur for my freshmen year, but I have to say that it wasnt something that impressed me as my first year of high school. First off I didn't know who the principal was til the 2nd semester. She doesnt interact at all with her students. Only the 1 of assistant principal does. The school has strict and unnecessary rules. The white and black students dont really interact as much. The freshmen experience program does not give 9th graders the 'real' experience of high school. I would not recommend this school unless you really dont care what school you attend.
What that parent wrote in 2004 is still true in 2008. The English Dept. is especially good. My child went to a 'name brand' college from Decatur High where her friends had gone to East Coast private schools; she said their training in writing was not as rigourous as hers at Decatur High. The student population is very diverse, and so school resources like the counseling office can be spread thin at times, but we are still happy with the school.
I graduated from this school and this school has had alot of improvement and I agree with the parent that stated that even though there's white and black the kids and parents come together to make the school a better place. My son is a Junior at DHS and I have another child that attends Renfroe Middle both coming out of Dekalb County district and I will recommend any parent that have a child in a No Kid Left Behind school that you will consider looking into Decatur City Schools. The teachers and coaches show how much that care about your child education here at Decatur. ***Home of the real Bulldogs*** #14 QTRBack Mom
Not for every kid. High achieving kids do ok, but not everyone wants to go to an Ivy League college.
All of my success in college is because of Decatur High. It is a school that does things the right way. Good people, with good ideas, good hearts, and good principles. Black and white kids don't do things seperate, but together. I'm not sure that words do it justice, but like we say DECATUR where it's GREATER.
Decatur is a small city bordering Atlanta. It has its own school district, with small elementary schools feeding into a single middle and high school. The high school has fewer than 700 students, and the composition of the student body covers the racial and economic spectrum. Yet its student achievement levels measure up admirably to those of the large, monochromatic suburban high schools. Only a handful of grads don't go on to some sort of higher educaton, and many attend top-tier schools like Georgia Tech, Emory, Morehouse, Spelman, UNC-Chapel Hill and even the military academies and some ivys. The physical plant, though recently renovated, is nothing to brag about, but there's a lot more to a school than bricks and mortar. Decatur is obviously doing something right.
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