Dalton Middle School is the sole middle school and the 2nd largest school in the Dalton Public School System. Construction on the school was finalized in 2000 and students, and staff moved into the new facility in January of 2001. DMS is located off of the North Bypass in Dalton, Georgia. The total enrollment for the school year 2016-2017 averaged more than 1760 students. The ethnic/racial background is 70% Hispanic, 5% African American, 20% White/non-Hispanic and 5% other. In addition to proudly displaying the U.S. flag, the entrance to our school is adorned with 48 other flags representing our students’ countries of origin and our rich cultural and linguistic diversity.
DMS is organized into three grade level wings. Each grade level contains five interdisciplinary core content teams. The fourth and newest wing, which opened in 2014, is the connections wing. The DMS campus houses two gymnasiums, sports fields, outdoor science areas, a field house, a performance area, a community meeting area, and two cafeterias. The school has five computer labs, and each student has a school issued Lenovo type device. Additionally, our school has full access to the adjacent Dalton Park and Recreation baseball and softball fields and pavilions for games and other school activities.
Interdisciplinary teams instruct students in math, social studies, science, and literacy. Spanish is offered for high school credit to eligible eighth graders. Eighth graders also have the opportunity to undertake high school credit classes in Algebra I, Physical Science and Health. Advanced coursework is offered at all grade levels. DMS utilizes inclusion settings for English Leaners and Exceptional students within the grade level teams. Connections include a variety of courses: technology, exploratory French, German and Latin, DMS TV production, yearbook, drama, career exploration, band, chorus, and piano among others.
The level and number of extra-curricular activities DMS is able to provide students are exceptional. Students from all grade levels are able to choose from a vast array of opportunities. They include yearbook, girls and boys basketball, football, wrestling, golf, tennis, swimming, boys and girls soccer, cheerleading, volleyball, academic bowl, Odyssey of the Mind, band, chorus, drama, track, and cross country. Extra-curricular activities align with those offered by the district’s two high schools, allowing students to build necessary skills and making the transition seamless. Clubs offer other options for students to become involved in school life. The school runs a special club schedule on Fridays providing students the possibility to pursue their interests in chess, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Tri-Hi-Y, Glee, Jam Band, DMS Morning show, and First Bank of Dalton among others.
The staff of Dalton Middle School consists of 177 members, of which 146 serve in instructional capacities. The school administration is made up of four assistant principals and one principal. DMS has four office staff personnel, a data entry clerk, two full time media specialists, one media clerk, three counselors and a full time school nurse. The school is unique in that many of our instructional staff members have spent their entire careers in Dalton Public Schools and at DMS. Many choose to drive significant distances to serve at DMS from areas such as Cleveland, Chattanooga, Calhoun, and Ellijay. Our staff is indeed diverse in experiences and areas of expertise, but the common factors among all are a great passion for serving the students of Dalton Middle School, a focus on continuous improvement, and a dedication to putting in much extra time to accomplish both.
The combination of strong and supportive academics, varied and extensive extra-curricular opportunities, a culturally and linguistically rich diverse student body, and a dedicated and passionate staff make Dalton Middle School a great place to learn and connect. We are very proud of our students, staff, and school and pleased to be part of the Dalton Difference!