Public PK-12 School District in Dalton, Georgia

Who We Are: The Dalton Difference

What is the Dalton Difference?

Female high school student smiling down at laptop

The Dalton Difference was embedded into our charter in 1886 when the city leaders agreed to form a separate school district that would provide a unique educational experience for their children.

Since then, DPS has been committed to meeting the individual needs of students and providing experiences and opportunities that have resulted in a long tradition of excellence.

The Dalton Difference Means: 

  • Providing meaningful and engaging work that results in profound learning for each student
  • Operating our school district as a learning organization where we are driven by improving the student experience
  • Continuous innovation and collaboration among staff
  • Training teachers to focus on actively involving students while making the experiences relevant and interesting 
  • Developing students who aren’t just learners, but also become designers, leaders and teachers as they inspire their fellow students.

Over the years, our student enrollment has changed as our city has grown. Not only has our enrollment increased, but it also reflects the growing diversity and downward economic shift in our community. Today, 75 percent of our students qualify for free or reduced lunch, come from 43 countries and represent 22 native languages. At the same time, we have nationally recognized high school by US News & World Report and the first Georgia Department of Education STEM Certified school north of metro Atlanta. While the shift in demographics can’t be ignored, our focus has remained on helping all students achieve their highest potential.

Many of our differences have grown out of a commitment to best serve all of our students, regardless of what opportunities or challenges they bring to the classroom. We are also committed to give innovations time to work. Our board, administration and staff have remained focused on providing frameworks, structures, programs and processes that ensure we do the right things for students for the right reasons so our students become contributing members of the global community.

Examples of the Dalton Difference can be found throughout our website. But, the best way to learn about the Dalton Difference is to experience it firsthand. Time and time again, individuals and groups who visit our classrooms comment that our students and teachers are actively engaged in learning and that our schools are clearly places where students feel valued, creative and proud.

Our principals and staff welcome the community to come see how your investment in education is creating our leaders of tomorrow. We invite you to see and experience the Dalton Difference!


Mission, Vision & Values

The mission of Dalton Public Schools is to develop trusting relationships and provide quality work that engages students in profound learning.

View Our Mission, Vision and Values here.

Student Profile

Student information infographic