Dr. Horton Column

DCSD is Focused on Building Bridges, Not Walls

Dear Students, Families, and Community Partners,

At the DeKalb County School District (DCSD), we proudly embrace diversity and celebrate our students’ unique backgrounds and cultures. We remain faithful to nurturing an educational system where safety, respect, and unity are encouraged and supported. For that reason, DCSD champions that we are a melting pot of cultures where over 140 languages are spoken which represent more than 180 countries throughout our 138 schools and centers. It is our distinct privilege and duty to foster environments that welcome, uplift, and protect every individual who walks through our doors.

In this embrace of diversity, DCSD proudly affirms its commitment to providing genuinely inclusive educational environments. Central to our mission is the MIRACLES Continuous Improvement Framework, which promises equity, opportunity, and the development of student potential. This mission is guided by our H-PRIDE (Humanization, Professionalism, Respect, Integrity, Dignity, and Empathy) tenets that serve as our compass on the journey toward educational equity and personal success for every child.

Beyond frameworks and tenets, our role as an educational institution extends beyond academics and includes encouraging values of understanding, acceptance, and unity in diversity. Every community member deserves to feel valued, respected, and above all- safe.

Community members and others have reached out to me regarding DCSD’s position in light of recent events in the Middle East. Our position is simple: We stand firmly against any form of discrimination, abuse, and division against anyone.

As I outlined last month in my Family Letter Regarding the Middle East, DCSD has taken enhanced steps to bolster the safety of our school community. From DCSD Police Officers to administrators and staff members, we are all united in being proactive, vigilant, and unyielding in our security measures. Any potential threats or incidents connected to these events will be addressed with seriousness and urgency by our dedicated personnel.

However, safety is a partnership. We again ask everyone to join us in this endeavor. Our “See Something, Say Something” campaign is not just a catchphrase—it’s a call to action. Should you or your child become aware of any potential threat, no matter where it arises, we trust that you will promptly communicate with our staff.

Despite current global events, the Dekalb County School District’s commitment remains towards ensuring a future where individuals are treated equitably and with compassion, regardless of their background or beliefs. At its core, we believe that we can work towards creating a more tolerant, inclusive, and safer world tomorrow through our students today.

Dr. Devon Q. Horton, Superintendent
DeKalb County School District