Dothan High has a new logo and alma mater, but that isn't all the school board voted on

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DOTHAN, Ala. (WTVY) - No doubt there will be changes in Dothan City Schools next year. The school board decided on a few more including new bell schedules, a teacher residency model and school choice at Monday’s meeting.

There may have been a lot on the agenda, and the school board moved pretty quickly, approving things left and right.

One thing, they left up to Dothan high-schoolers to decide.

"As time moves on, the world will claim us for failure or success,” said one Dothan high-schooler at the board meeting. “Still, we ever shall remember alma mater Dothan High."

The last few lines of Dothan High's Alma Mater - a combination of the two high school's current school songs.

A group of Dothan and Northview students decided it would be important to keep the spirit of both schools.

That wasn't the only thing they decided.

They also designed the new Dothan "D" and wolf mascot logo.

"What they did today [Monday] will affect our students for a long time,” said Dothan City School Board Chairman Mike Schmitz. “They did a great job. We're very proud of them."

The students worked with the Dothan Technology Center to come up with several different versions of the logos.

They are original ideas and are copyrighted, so Dothan High will be the only school with a wolf that looks like this one.

"The kids came up with that,” said Dothan City School Parent Shaun Cunningham. “If that's what they want, it doesn't affect me. I want the kids to be happy with where they are going to school. If that's what they want, then that's what they need to get."

Shaun Cunningham has children at Montana Magnet and Carver Magnet.

He drives his kids to school every day, so he was more concerned about a different item on the agenda.

"They approved the staggering of the times, but the actual start and end times for the different grade levels could change in the future,” said Cunningham.

With the school board approval, that means the elementary, middle and high schools will all start and end at different times, to help keep from stretching the fleet of buses too thin.

Cunningham is in favor of the idea, but does worry the new 'staggered' times will stretch parents with multiple kids a little too thin.

"One would have to be picked up at 2:10, one would be picked up at 3:50,” said Cunningham. “With my job, I can't flex my schedule like that."

Those times are pretty far apart, but they haven't been set in stone just yet.

The board asked the superintendent and transportation department to "tweak" the times just a bit.

"Right now, I think we're really close, and I think it's going to work, but we can always look at being better,” said Schmitz.

The board also approved the superintendent's idea of school choice.

That means elementary parents can apply to get their child into a school they aren't zoned for if it offers a program they prefer.

The Dothan and Northview students put together the lyrics for the new alma mater, but the system did have to hire a professional composer to write the music.

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