Tuesday, August 9, 2022

Social Studies Team Impacts Familes Around the World

IMG_1216The fifth grade Social Studies team at Durham Intermediate School fifth graders are helping families around the world.

The team is involved with Kiva, which allows people to make small loans to invididuals or groups. DIS received a grant which allowed it to make 45 loans totaling $1,125 in 20 different countries. The loan is slow repaid, allowing DIS to lend it out again.

This project has raised social and global awareness for the DIS students. It has expanded the classroom discussion on geography, world culture, world-wide current events, economics, entrepreneurship and service learning. The goal is to introduce students to real world money management and greater understanding of world culture.







DIS Principal Announces Retirement


Debra Moore is retiring after four years at Durham Intermediate School.

Durham Intermediate School principal Debra Moore announced her retirement after serving 28 years in public education. Moore has been with DIS since 2010, leading this 5th-6th grade campus through the transition of new construction and the elementary move to Walnut Grove. Moore, a graduate of Texas Tech, started her career as a teacher in Lubbock in 1987.

Before arriving in Carroll ISD, Moore worked in Coppell ISD as Director of Student Services. She also worked at Burleson High School as Associate Principal for Academics. Moore will remain at DIS through the remainder of the 2013-2014 school year.

“We want to thank her for her dedication to CISD and wish her the best in this next phase of her life,” said Carroll superintendent Dr. David Faltys.

The position will be posted soon and be open to in-district and out-of-district candidates. Dr. JJ Villarreal, Assistant Superintendent of Student Services, will lead the screening and interview committee, which will be comprised of central office administrators, campus teachers and Durham parents. This group will serve in an advisory capacity. Dr. Faltys will make the final recommendation to the CISD Board of Trustees.

UPDATED: Southlake Police Alert – Police looking into report of suspicious male

UPDATE 2/28 10:40 a.m.
Southlake police officers continue to patrol the area where a student says he was approached by a man in white Ford pickup truck while on his way to Durham Intermediate School Wednesday morning. The student reported that the man asked him to get into his truck. The student said, “No,” immediately leaving the area and reporting it to the School Resource Officer and CISD.

Officers began patrolling all area schools early this morning as the investigation continues into the incident. Our staff police forensic artist met with the student to develop a composite sketch of the man driving the truck. The driver is described as a white male in his mid-50’s, glasses, a light blue ball cap and a grey zip-up jacket. There is no height/weight description to add as the driver was seated in his vehicle.

If you recognize this individual please contact the Southlake Police Department’s CID at 817-748-8341 or Tarrant County Crimestoppers at 817-469 TIPS (8477).



City of Southlake Police are looking into a report from a Durham Intermediate student who was approached by an unknown male as the student was riding his bike to school this morning. The incident occurred in the area of Durham Intermediate School.  The student reported the incident to the School Resource Officer and police began an immediate investigation.

The vehicle is described as a white Ford pickup truck with tinted windows and no other distinguishing marks. The driver is described as a male in his mid-50’s, glasses, a light-blue ball cap and a grey zip-up jacket. The driver asked the student if he wanted to get into his pickup. The student said, “No,” and continued on to school.

Again, police are investigating and will provide updates as necessary.

Repeat Champ at DIS Geography Bee

Durham Intermediate School’s 2014 National Geographic Bee was held Friday, Jan. 24.

Each fifth and sixth grade Social Studies class participated in a preliminary bee to determine class winners. The top ten students then went on to the Final Round. Sixth graders Bradley Lund and Gus Milhizer then advanced to the Championship Round.

This is Bradley’s second year as winner of the National Geographic Bee at DIS. Bradley must make a qualifying score on the written test portion of the test to qualify for the state level competition. That contest will be held on Friday, April 4.

Durham Hosts Shoe Drive

The Student Council, KC Club, and the Humanities Classes at Durham Intermediate School have teamed up with Buckner International to ask Southlake residents to collect shoes for children in need.

The annual nationwide Shoes for Orphan Souls shoe drive started last month, and since that time DIS students collected  319 pairs of shoes, 1,1138 pairs of socks and over 200 pairs of laces. The donations were made during the three week community service project that ended Tuesday, Dec. 18.

“We have seen the smiles that a new pair of shoes brings to children in the orphanages we visit, and we want to extend that same joy to others like them” said Heather Weathers, Manager of Acquisitions and Shoes for Orphan Souls.  “Because of Durham Intermediate’s commitment to this program, we can continue to increase the number of kids who will benefit.”

Weathers emphasized no donation is too small. “Most of the donations to the shoe drive have come from families giving one or two pairs of shoes.  Every one pair of shoes makes a big difference to the child who receives them.” Donations from Durham will be combined with others from around the country.  Organizers hope to collect more than 250,000 pairs of new shoes and socks, through the nationwide campaign. Since 1999, Buckner has sent more than 2.3 million pairs of new shoes to vulnerable children in 74 countries around the globe, including the United States.

Durham Students Rap Against Bullying

Students walking the halls at Durham Intermediate School wanted to raise awareness about bullying in school.

Assistant Principal Kathy Phillips created what she calls ‘Project TRUTH’ as a tool to teach respect and understanding toward all humankind. This program is intended to teach students about bullying and provide them with confidence and tools to try and put a stop to it.

“A lot of programs address the bully not the victim,” said Phillips.

Phillips started Project TRUTH as a voluntary after school program. During the first session, the students created masks describing who they are and then shared the masks with the group. These masks were done to build confidence and leadership in the students.

The second project Phillips initiated with the students was an anti-bullying music video. She said the students discussed how they viewed bullying and wrote the lyrics with help from the DIS Music teacher Amanda Gillum.

The lyrics were written to the tune of “Glad You Came” by the new boy band “The Wanted” and addressed bullying in P.E. classes, the hallways, the school bus and cyber-bullying over social media sites.

Paul Hellwege, a fifth grade student at DIS, said they met five times after school to work on the music video. He joined Project TRUTH because he heard his friends getting bullied by older kids and he wanted to learn more about bullying and how to put a stop to it.
Sixth grader Camden Cozzens said many high school students pick on the little kids, and they may not realize that was what they were doing. He said he hoped this video would make them aware of what they were doing. “It’s going to stop,” he said.

Jessica Ahner, also a fifth grader at DIS, said she joined because she wanted to help her friend who was being bullied and her parents thought it was nice to stand up against bullying.

DIS Science Lab teacher Stephen Hoag assisted the group with the production of the music video. Hoag is also in charge of KDUR Crew Club. KDUR is the closed-circuit TV station at DIS.

Carroll ISD School Board Secretary John Thane also assisted with the Project TRUTH video. He said he came across information regarding Project TRUTH and reached out to Phillips for more information. Phillips invited him out to watch the kids work on the video.

“I watched the kids run the whole thing, the kids did all the work,” said Thane, “I sat back and let them know I was very supportive of their efforts.”

Thane said all of the credit should be given to the students, Phillips, Hoag and Gillum.

Thane even made a cameo appearance in the video, dancing behind the students towards the end.

After the video was complete, Phillips said they had a “Red Carpet Affair” for the students in the DIS Library. The event included Paparazzi, interviewers, popcorn, pickles, Tootsie Pops and soda. The parents were also invited to attend.

“They felt their students had benefitted from it,” Phillips said of the project.

As a group, the students agreed they wanted Project TRUTH to continue next year, and the sixth graders moving on to middle school hoped to continue this idea at the middle school level. Fifth grader Nick Lee suggested they make Project TRUTH an event like Rachel’s Challenge.

Thane said he believes Project TRUTH and the message it teaches has very close ties with Rachel’s Challenge and supports the students continuing this idea next year and the years to come.

The powerful final words in the song state “Now it’s time to take a stand. Me and my friends will go hand in hand. Raise our voice to make a choice. Stop bullying! Stop bullying!”

“It won’t stop it, but it’s a starting place,” Phillips said.

Phillips is hoping to make Project TRUTH part of the curriculum and said that it would reach at least 95 percent of the students at DIS.