DeSoto ISD Presents State of District Address

DeSoto ISD Presents the 2022 State of District Address to the Business, Civic Community
Posted on 04/01/2022
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The DeSoto Independent School District presented the annual State of the District address to its local business & civic community during a lunch event hosted by the DeSoto Chamber of Commerce on March 28, 2022, at the district’s Multipurpose Center.

During this event, district, city, and state elected officials and staff, corporate and small business owners experienced “The DeSoto Difference” and received a clarion call to be active supporters of the students and district.


DeSoto High School senior leaders, Valerie Villacorta, Nia Franzua, and Gabrielle Haynes welcomed the guests amid a classical piano prelude by district leader, Andrae Rhyne. 

Opening the program, the DeSoto High School JROTC presented the colors as a member of the DHS choir sang the national anthem. The sounds of the award-winning DeSoto High School Wind Symphony under the direction of Delton Brown also permeated the atmosphere during the mid-morning district showcase and networking event.

The guests dined on entrees prepared by the DeSoto High School Culinary students, at tables with centerpieces designed by students in DHS floral design class. Framed artwork by the district’s fine arts students was displayed throughout the venue.

The close of the chamber event left attendees mesmerized by the elegant voices of the award-winning, history-making DeSoto High School A Capella Choir under the direction of two-time Grammy Music Educator nominee Ms. Pamela Dawson. 

DeSoto ISD Interim Superintendent Dr. Larry D. Lewis served as the keynote presenter during this event sharing his appreciation for the continued commitment to excellence by the district’s students, the impacts and solutions to help advance students impacted by the pandemic, and the request for the community to advocate and actively support the district’s journey to overall excellence.

“In the days that I have been here, I can say that when we talk about what is great about DeSoto ISD, it is our students. We have children who are doing amazing work and amidst all of the other conversations, students are continuing to SOAR.”

Lewis also shared several accomplishments of the district students such as the Ruby Young Personalized STEAM Academy students who graduated from the first drone academy developed in partnership with the DeSoto Police Department. He further acknowledged the selection of several DHS choir students to national, regional, and state competitions and the DHS Wind Symphony Band’s selection as the featured performance band at the HBCU Band Directors Consortium.

Dr. Lewis also acknowledged the school board for the approval to implement a birth to 12th-grade robust literacy program for the entire DeSoto and Glen Heights communities.

“When it comes to the city, education determines where the city goes. This program will impact and transform the lives of students and families in the DeSoto and Glen Heights communities for years to come,” said Lewis.

Following an audience-engaged demonstration that balanced the power of maintaining strong relationships, Dr. Lewis shared his projection of the state of the district.

“The state of the district will be as great as we are as adults working together because the only way we can win is together,” said Lewis. “As we move forward, the state of the district is our state, how well we are together. The only way we can win is by working to overcome the adversary which is incompetence, illiteracy, and any adversary which keeps our students from growing.”

The mission of DeSoto ISD is to ensure that all students, without exception, grow to their highest levels and Dr. Lewis spoke to methods by which the district will resolve the barriers to the student's success. He pledged and extended the olive branch of partnership, service and support, and advocacy of the district. 

“We are going to ensure that every student has individual academic plans that will help them succeed in any area that they choose. We are trying to go from good to great to sustainability. The only way to do that is through the commitment that we make to each other to make it happen for our students,” said Lewis. “The state of the district is all about excellence, today, tomorrow, and in the future.”

The DeSoto Chamber of Commerce is committed to helping the city maintain a strong business community by continuing to work toward improving and strengthening partnerships with its members and stakeholders. Learn more about the chamber at

Learn more about the great things that are happening in DeSoto ISD by visiting our website at