Month: August 2014

Dobyns-Bennett Student-Athletes Give Back

DB Basketball Serves3    DB Basketball Serves1   DB Basketball Serves4

(Photos courtesy Nick Shepherd, Kingsport Times-News)

We Serve…

Mathematics.  Science.  Language Arts.  Social Studies.  Music.  The Arts.  When it comes to what is taught in Kingsport City Schools, these are likely the subjects that come to mind.  While they form the core foundation of who we are and what we do, there are other words that also describe the values we work to instill in our students and throughout our educational community.

Selflessness.  Commitment.  Integrity.  Thankfulness.  Dedication.  Service.

These were the types of life skills demonstrated by the Dobyns-Bennett Girls and Boys basketball teams on Saturday, August 9, 2014 as almost 30 D-B student-athletes turned out to help serve lunch to members of our local National Guard.  Led by D-B coaches Bill Francis and Charlie Morgan and supported by the Kingsport Texas Roadhouse, these young men and women took time out to, in some small way, show their appreciation for the sacrifice provided by the members of the National Guard.  And though the service provided by these students may pale in relation to those that have risked their lives to protect our freedoms, this act of giving back can help to solidify a foundational understanding of the importance of personal sacrifice.

To be successful on the court, these athletes must show a high level of commitment and dedication in the classroom, during practice, and on game night.  But to ultimately be successful in life, they need to learn the importance of developing and using those same skills in the broader picture… How sacrifice, service, and appreciation will increase the impact of both their lives and the lives of those around them.  These are the lessons our faculty and staff work to instill on a daily basis.  By volunteering to serve others, these young men and women demonstrate they are learning this critical skill that, beyond anything that can be taught in a book, will make them ultimately successful in life.

We Serve… We Are KCS!

Click here to view Nick Shepherd’s full review in the August 10, 2014 Kingsport Times-News.



KCS Launches D-B EXCEL – A Game-Changer for Today’s Secondary Students


We Are Groundbreaking…

Let’s face it… Today’s world looks much different from the one of ten, twenty, or thirty years ago.  From changes in technology, communications, and culture, society has evolved at a dizzying pace.  We would be naïve to think that education can’t, or shouldn’t, evolve with it.  Our parents and community expect that we will do everything possible to meet today’s students where they are and provide an innovative, high-impact educational experience that will prepare them for future success.

For many months, the administrators at Cora Cox Academy and Dobyns-Bennett High School have been examining their current educational programing and envisioning the full scope of what secondary education could look like, especially for the student that is not as likely to find success in the traditional high school setting.  Out of that extensive research and planning led by Mrs. Shanna Hensley and Dr. Chris Hampton, D-B EXCEL (Excellence in a Creative Environment for Learning) was born. 

This innovative approach to personalized learning takes the core foundational philosophies of KCS and places them in an environment that better fits today’s non-traditional high school student.  The campus is unique, providing opportunities for online learning, blended (both online and in-person) learning, and even a planned full-time virtual academy.  Schedules are unique, with classes even offered outside the traditional school day, often going late into the afternoon and evening.  This is especially helpful for students that have work or family responsibilities that keep them from maintaining a traditional school schedule.

And the learning is especially unique.  The coursework allow students to craft a more individualized learning path and provides the versatility to work at a much more personalized pace.  By providing counseling, mentorships, and a positive school culture, staff can assist D-B EXCEL students in maximizing their academic potential in a truly innovative way.  The intended outcome is to open doors and opportunities to a world of possibilities where students are empowered to focus on their own specific goals.

It’s a game-changer for secondary education not only for Kingsport, but for the entire region and state (the virtual academy is planned to open in 2015 to any Tennessee student).  Is it for you or someone you know?  Find out by accessing a  wealth of information available at  D-B EXCEL… It’s a progressive leap forward in creating a world-class educational experience for all students, providing an innovative approach to personalized learning.

We Are Groundbreaking … We Are KCS!

Kingsport City Schools Begins 2014-15 School Year

BacktoSchool3               Back to School Back to school2

We are ready…

Though teachers and staff have been back at work for quite a few days now (and some never actually left!), many more alarm clocks likely went off much earlier than usual all around Kingsport this week as 7,000+ KCS students made the official shift from summer mode to the 2014-15 school year.  For the first time in 74 days (yes, summer break was really that long) lunches were packed, backpacks were loaded with fresh supplies, buses rolled, and quiet school hallways filled with the buzz of excitement and new beginnings.  The first day of school is always a time of renewed opportunities, and this year was no different, as students, teachers, and staff embarked on the unknown journey that is our new school year.

For some, it is a brand new adventure.  How precious it is to see the faces of 530 kindergarteners mixed with eager anticipation, happiness, and just a touch of nervousness as they start “big” school.  For the over 450 seniors at Dobyns-Bennett, it’s the beginning of the end of their KCS journey.  Their faces may look decidedly different as they balance AP coursework, graduation requirements, Senior Prom, and college or career choices.  But if truth be told, they are probably feeling that exact same mix of emotions as those 5-year olds entering school for the very first time.

Over 40 teachers and just as many classified staff members are starting a new professional journey with KCS this week.  Each year always brings a new group of dedicated and excited educators to Kingsport, and this year is no different.  As one of its Core Tenets, KCS lists as one of its organizational goals to recruit, hire, and retain the very best employees.  Though that process takes place all year long, the first day of the school year is always a landmark day in that process for so many individuals that we are so excited to now call colleagues.

And for John Sevier Middle School teacher Kenn Naegele, Monday might be day #1, but it is certainly nothing new.  As the longest tenured employee of Kingsport City Schools, this week marks his 43rd “first day of school.”  You might think that after starting over 40 school years, this would be old hat for him.  However, I’m sure Kenn will attest that he has the same level of energy, excitement, and even “butterflies” as those new employees just starting their educational careers. 

Young or old.  Experienced or brand new.  Day one always brings new excitement… new beginnings.. new possibilities.  It’s quite possibility the best day of the year!

We are ready… We Are KCS!