Freshman class’s success is another barometer for district’s momentum

Published 9:56 am Thursday, November 19, 2015

Dowagiac Union High School’s Youth Experiencing Success (YES) program “experienced” another milestone Tuesday morning.

The academic achievement program recognized the accomplishments of 51 freshmen that day, all of whom had received either A’s or B’s in every single one of their classes for the first marking period. The group was the largest number of students honored in a single ceremony in the YES program’s two-year history.

According to organizer Doug Pearson, the group of students made up nearly 25 percent of the entire freshmen class — which is quite impressive indeed.

For a school district that has just reached a milestone moment with the passage of its pair of bond proposals earlier this month, Tuesday’s awards were another high note for Dowagiac Union Schools as it continues to ride a wave of momentum over the past year.

One of the administrators present during the ceremony that morning was Assistant Principal Mike Churchill, who credited the high turnout in part to the positivity that has been flowing throughout the high school and other buildings for months. This is not only having an effect on the academic performance of students, but also on the morale of teachers and staff.

This wave has been building since the district began its #DowagiacUnited campaign earlier this year, which was a movement dedicated toward bringing the community and district closer together. Since then, our students have benefited in a number of tremendous ways, including winning a statewide battle of the fans contest in February.

The community came out again in support of their students on Election Day, when voters approved of the district’s $37 million plan to renovate the high school and elementary school buildings, bringing them up to par with 21st Century learning standards.

We congratulate this group of talented freshmen for their accomplishments, and we thank everyone who has contributed, in some way or another, to their — and the rest of the Dowagiac’s students’ — successes.


Opinions expressed are those of the editorial board consisting of Publisher Michael Caldwell and editors Ambrosia Neldon, Craig Haupert, Ted Yoakum and Scott Novak.