Saturday, September 16, 2017

MCDOWELL ELEMENTARY SCHOOL celebrates positive behavior

McDowell Elementary School’s Positive Behavior Kick Off took place recently and classes painted rocks to make McDowell a better place.

Principal Lynne Borg read a special book called, "Only One You," by Linda Kranz, to celebrate that everyone is each special and different in our world.

Classes carried on that theme with rock painting to make McDowell a better place.

To the world we are only a single person. To McDowell, students are our world!

MCDOWELL ELEMENTARY SCHOOL welcomes new classroom and Ms. Cook

McDowell Elementary School welcomes a new classroom and their teacher, Ms. Cook to our team!

MYERS ELEMENTARY SCHOOL: Teachers excited to return to classrooms

Mrs. Jackson is showing off some of the first few days of school at Myers Elementary School. Fifth grade teachers Mrs. Williams and Mr. Bryant are hard at work teaching their classes.

MCDOWELL ELEMENTARY SCHOOL: More photographs from open house

MCDOWELL ELEMENTARY SCHOOL open house a great success

The McDowell Elementary School's recent Open House was a great success, thanks to all the parents, students and families that came to join us in welcoming another great school year.


The Taylor School District is currently seeking applicants interested in being a school cook. You can get an application at the Administration Offices at 23033 Northline Road.

KENNEDY AND TRUMAN HOMECOMING: Voting to take place using new City of Taylor voting machines

The City Clerk's office will be administering the election for the homecoming kings and queens, for both Kennedy and Truman high schools, this year. 

Kennedy will vote on Friday, September 22; Truman will vote on Tuesday, October 10.

The students will cast their vote using the new election equipment, giving them a real voting experience. City Clerk Cindy Bower points out that "(we) do this to encourage our youth to vote, and to demonstrate that voting is not an intimidating process."

In conjunction with the elections the office will hold voter registration drives for eligible students.

TRUMAN HIGH SCHOOL: POHI room continues renovations

Here photographs were forwarded to us from POHI at Truman High School, a magnet program that serves physically handicapped students across the region.

The renovation was started through a partnership between the Taylor School District, City of Taylor, Home Depot and many other private companies and unions. Similar partnerships between the district and the city have created the new "Little Theater" stage at Truman and helped provide snacks and refreshments for the Hoover Middle School after-school program.

The POHI facility at Truman was severely out of date, and renovations created new walls, cabinets and added important work and storage space. The project isn't quite complete, but for anyone who visited the POHI rooms in previous years, you'll notice some remarkable improvement.

KENNEDY HIGH SCHOOL: 2006 graduate wins national pageant

(NOTE: 2006 Kennedy High School graduate Da'Stanza Murphy was recently named the winner of the National Ms. Captivating Pageant. Writer Sue Suchyta featured Murphy in the following story written for The News-Herald Newspapers.)

A local pageant queen hopes to hold court with local girls to help them discover their inner beauty, build their self-esteem and introduce them to the power of positive thinking.

As the newly crowned National Ms. Captivating 2018 pageant winner, Da’Stanza Murphy of Taylor hopes to increase her outreach with area girls through her personal community service platform of “image inspiration through education.”

As part of her outreach she hopes to work with Girl Scout troops, since she was positively influenced by her years in Scouting.

A 2006 graduate of Taylor Kennedy High School, Murphy has beauty and brains: she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in broadcast journalism and a Master’s degree in public relations and organizational communications from Wayne State University, and is currently an information officer for WSU’s College of Fine, Performing and Communication Arts.

In addition to her 15 years of pageant experience, she also is a former dance student and instructor at Taylor Dance Program under the direction of Joy Squire, and is a superior-rated mezzo-soprano Italian opera singer.

Murphy entered the world of pageants on her own volition, and found the experience helped her to become confident and outgoing.

“It was a way for me to make friends, it was a way for me to be a part of something bigger and I liked being on stage,” she said.
Murphy said the pageantry circuit also introduced her to community service.

“The aspect that really makes one pageant different from another is having a community service platform,” she said. “My community service platform for years has been mentoring younger girls, and specifically I do a mentoring program called ‘Mentoring a Younger Me,’ that focuses on young girls in the sixth to eighth grade range.”
Murphy said middle school-age girls are going through a challenging phase during which they are transitioning and are vulnerable.

“I want them to know that somebody is there for you,” she said. “I get it, I remember what it is like to be going through puberty. I want to be that role model.”

As a former Scout, she said she likes to team up with Girl Scout troops.

“What they stand for — that girl power, supporting your sister, having a positive mindset, positive feedback — that is what I try to instill in the girls that I talk to,” she said.

Murphy said she connects with individual Girl Scout troops in the Downriver community and in other areas through the Girl Scouts of Southeastern Michigan Council.

She has a variety of activities she uses, including what she calls “I am” boards, where each girl would pick five words to describe herself, which she said is a great activity for finding positive self-esteem building adjectives. Then she pairs each participant with a peer and has them pick five words to describe them. She has the girls share the words, and how it makes them feel.

“It really reinforces that positive mindset, positive words, especially in a day and age when bullying is on some other type of planet with social media and technology,” Murphy said.

In addition to Girl Scout troops, Murphy goes to career days and other youth events.

Basic etiquette and how to deal with bullying behavior are other topics she covers.

“They get to take home confidence, they get to take home encouragement, and they get to take home those (I am) boards,” she said. “I always say, ‘This may sound cheesy, but read this when you don’t feel good.’”

Murphy said she tries to impart the importance of being positive for their own sake and for others.

“They are going to be taking care of me someday, so I want to be sure our youth is strong,” she said.

To learn more about Captivating pageants go to To contact Murphy about mentoring opportunities for girls, send her an email at

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

KENNEDY HIGH SCHOOL: Marine drill team pays a visit

The United States Marine Corps Silent Drill Platoon recently visited Kennedy High School students and treated the crowd to a demonstration.

Following the performance, Marines hosted a clinic in the gym and JROTC room on spinning rifles and they helped interested students learn to hold, spin and carry drill rifles.

A big thank you goes out to Col. Wicker and the USMC for helping to organize the presentation.

IMMUNIZATION CLINIC: Back to school event scheduled at Teen Health Center for September 23

TRUMAN HIGH SCHOOL DECA organizing large food collection campaign

The Truman High School DECA organization is organizing a food collection effort to help stock the both the Truman and Kennedy high school food pantries.

It will be held at St. John's Church, 13115 Telegraph Road, on September 23. It begins at 10 a.m.

This effort will also help supply the Downriver Fish & Loaves Food Pantry, located in Taylor, and send food to hurricane relief efforts in the gulf coast region.

If you are interested in learning more about helping out, contact

ALUMNI NEWSLETTER FOR SEPTEMBER: Highlights include where are they now, new members and upcoming events