First middle school PTO DeFo Dash a success

The DeForest Area Middle School PTO raised over $11,000 at their first annual DeFo Dash, held on Saturday, May 6. The successful fundraiser from the 5K walk/run helped the PTO reach their goal of $25,000 to complete renovation of the middle school’s 7th/8th grade library.

About 250 runners and walkers participated in the run/walk. PTO organizers appreciated the sponsors who donated snacks, awards, and other supplies for the race. They especially want to thank Diesel Forward for their generous gift of $5,000.

Principal Ann Higgins appreciated the efforts of the school’s PTO for organizing this first ever event for the middle school. “A special thank you to Jennie Taylor who did so much to help organize the event and who handled much of the logistics on the day of the race,” said Higgins. “We invite parents and community members to visit our newly renovated library this fall!”

Top finishers of the race were:

  • 5th Grade – TJ Taylor
  • 6th Grade – Rhett Parker
  • 7th Grade – Cole Thennes
  • 8th Grade – Tanner Williams
  • Top female finisher – Gail Lovick
  • Top male finisher – Brad Bodden

Those still interested in purchasing a DeFo Dash t-shirt can do so by emailing The cost is $10 each.



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Scenes from 2017 DAHS Prom

Thanks to Sam Rodriguez at the DeForest Times-Tribune for sharing photos from this year’s prom.

2017 Prom Court

Front row: Alexa Horkan, Emily Chermak, Mimi Murphy, Sidney Bergeron, Kylie Rogers, Olive Foster MIddle row: Simon Pink, Amelia Boehning, Leah Roisum, Kennedy Wittmann, Izzy Oehme, Morgan Chadwick, Benjamin Love-Jackson, Jayden Williams-Jones Back row: Zacheriah Rau, Bryce Duffy, John Castro Flores, Emilio Morales, Xavier Zimmerman, Jimmy Klein, Benjamin Georgeson, Mili Aziri, Kyle Knutson.

Congratulations to 2017 Prom Queen, Alexa Horkanl and King, Kyle Knuteson! They were crowned by the 2016 Prom King and Queen, Jaylee Grundahl and Cody Dobson.

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Middle school students attend State Leadership Conference


L-R: Max Loeck, Trevor Lebrun, Kaia DeRubis, Sarah Hill, Kyra Lange, Carly Oosterhof, Sam Fischer, Jay Frank, and Advisor: Julie Bernards

DAMS Student Council members attended the Wisconsin Association of Student Councils leadership conference May 7th and 8th in Madison.

Over 100,000 Wisconsin teens have experienced the energy and education of the WASC State Conference since it’s inception.  During the two-day conference at the Madison Marriott West, attendees were able to choose from a wide variety of breakout sectionals that covered everything from school spirit ideas to volunteering to college planning.  The conference also provides stusdents an opportunity to meet students from other schools.


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Gustafson chosen for 2017 No Barriers Summit and Global Impact Project

Briana GustufsonBriana Gustafson is one of 20 educators who has been chosen to participate in the 2017 No Barriers Summit in California, June 1-4.   All travel expenses, including lodging, airfare and meals are covered through the No Barriers Youth – Wells Fargo Global Impact Project.
According to the No Barriers Youth website, more than a thousand people will arrive in North Lake Tahoe, CA, June 1-4, for the 8th annual No Barriers Summit. Produced by national non-profit No Barriers USA, this annual festival brings together families, youth, educators, veterans, inventors, speakers, performers, and people with a wide range of disabilities. The diverse nature of the Summit’s attendees belies a common theme — the desire to overcome barriers. This year’s Summit intends to show participants that anything is possible.
No Barriers Summit flyerAfter 4 days of inspirational storytelling, over 40 accessible activities, and high-tech presentations, No Barriers promises Summit attendees will leave transformed. “We gather people from all walks of life and inspire them to discover their full potential,” says No Barriers co-founder and world renowned blind adventurer Erik Weihenmayer, whose new book “No Barriers” recently hit shelves. “The Summit challenges us all to step out of our comfort zones, try new things, and return home feeling empowered to never let barriers stop us.” Weihenmayer, who has been featured on the cover of TIME magazine, on HBO Real Sports, and is currently in demand on the corporate speaker circuit, will be featured during the Summit’s closing ceremonies. Also among the star-studded lineup of entertainment, Marlee Matlin will speak about her achievements as an Oscar-winning deaf actress and sign language advocate. Platinum recording artists X Ambassadors, whose keyboardist Casey Harris is blind, will give an intimate on-stage interview and acoustic performance.
“This fall, I will share what I’ve learned at the Summit and begin working with a small group of students from our district to bring the Global Impact Challenge to our school. The mission of this challenge is to help individuals with disabilities overcome barriers,” said Briana.
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DAHS Class of 2017 Top Scholars



L-R: Back row – Allison Marquardt, Erica Camarato, Josie Brandmeier, Brenna Bernards, Kaitlyn Chambers, Hayley O’Brion; Front row – Cody Dobson, Cameron Rogers, Brandon Westra, Eric Fabian, Clayton Gotzion; Not pictured – Maija Fredrick

The 23rd Annual Badger Conference Top Scholars banquet recently honored students from each school in the North and South Badger Conferences based on grade point average.

DeForest Area High School’s top 12 graduating seniors were honored by the Badger Conference on Sunday, April 30th. Parents of the students, DAHS Principal Machell Schwarz, and District Administrator Dr. Eric Runez accompanied students to the banquet.

The guest speaker of the event was the Executive Director of the Wisconsin Association of School District Administrators, Dr. Jon Bales.



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College Fair at DAHS, May 22

On Monday, May 22 (“C” Day), DAHS will host a College Fair for students, from 10:30 am to 3:00 pm, in the North Gym.


While the Fair is open to all students, this is especially important for high school juniors, who should be starting to think about college visits, applications, etc.

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DAHS earns special honor for participating in “German Day” for 28 years!

uwOn Tuesday, April 25th, the Department of German, Nordic, and Slavic at the University of Wisconsin-Madison hosted its 28th “German Day” from the Union South on the UW-Madison campus. Since 1990, students of German from high schools and middle schools around Wisconsin have been showcasing their learning of the German language and its cultures through poetry readings, spelling bees, skit presentations, Pictionary, charades, singing, both solo and ensemble, and a poster competition. This year there were 30 middle schools & high schools, 32 dedicated German teachers (+ additional chaperones!), 511 enthusiastic & hardworking students, 32 eager volunteers, at the event.

This year’s theme, “beieinander, füreinander, miteinander”, meaning “side by side, with each other, for each other,” celebrated collaboration and the importance of working together. Over the past 28 years, more than 17,000 students from Wisconsin high schools and middle schools have participated in German Day.

Thirteen students from DeForest Area High School attended this year’s event.  The group earned a special honors award for participating in the event each of the 28 years!

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