March 11, 2022

Dear Parents,

For the next four months we will be having a coffee morning each month from March until June. There will be a set structure for these coffee mornings as we have received feedback from our parent community that they would like specific topics covered as well as information/updates from our side.

Please join us for our first coffee morning next week, March 17th from 8:30-9:30am, a letter with the zoom meeting will be sent shortly. 

You said, we did- Increasing the flow of communication between parents, counselors and leadership. 

Our communication structure has improved in the following ways:


Last month we met with DAAPA leadership to brainstorm additional ways to increase communication flow in the high school. We determined that we already have structures in place but can utilize them in a more effective way. 

As you know there is a DAAPA created WhatsApp group for each grade level and two DAAPA representatives per grade level. To increase communication both to and from school, we have selected a dedicated counselor for each grade level.  At a recent meeting, we came together in person and had small meetings between the grade level leads.  They agreed that any trends in counselor-related questions would be directed to the counselor and discussed together. This will help provide timely and accurate information to parents.  Common trends will be addressed at the monthly coffee mornings.


Student Voice

10th Annual career conference for grade 10

On Friday March 18, our Grade 10 students will take part in the 10th Annual Career Conference. We have 30 amazing guest speakers who will discuss their educational journey and their careers. These guest speakers are volunteers from our DAA parent community and we thank them for giving up their time to take part in this exciting event. Students will have the opportunity to sign up to various speakers throughout the Conference and also ask questions in each session.

For more information, please check out the Career Conference site.

If you have a question, please email Ms. Rhiana Courlander at r.courlander_daa@gemsedu.com  

senior splash and lunch

On Friday March 18, Seniors who have signed up for the Senior Splash N Lunch will have a fun-filled day at Aquaventure. Students who have prepaid for the trip should meet us directly at Aquaventure at 10am. Please check your email for more information about the trip. Seniors who are not attending the trip are expected to attend their regularly scheduled classes on campus. Attendance will be taken both on campus and at Aquaventure.

ib visual art exhibition

Our Senior Art students are thrilled to showcase their final art exhibition. Visitors are welcome to view the work on Wednesday 16th March 3:30 - 5:30pm using the QR code to reserve a visiting time.

The exhibition showcases 4-7 artworks for SL students and 8-11 artworks for HL students.

This exhibition is a selection of work over their 2 year IB Visual Art course. Each student chooses a theme to respond to in any media suitable for their intention. They take inspiration from artists and develop their own individual concepts.

Seniors would be delighted to have you visit and talk to you about their work. We hope to see many of you there!

2022/23 Subject Selection and Fair

Subject selection for the 2022/23 academic year is now open in PowerSchool. Please refer to the Subject Selection Website to research course options. To further support student’s subject selection, the high school will host a virtual subject selection fair on Thursday, March 24th from 1:30pm-2:55pm. During this time, students will have the opportunity to speak to teachers and students about specific courses and ask any questions that they may have. Subject selection will remain open until Friday, April 15th, and revisions to subject selections can be made until this time.

For general subject selection questions, please contact Ashley Szar, Director of High School Academic Pathways, at a.szar_daa@gemsedu.com. Please contact your counselor for student-specific questions.

HS Library: March - the month of reading

The Month of Reading continues at DAA! This week we launched the Book Quiz and Bagels for Books sign-ups, started a cozy little Book Nook in the corner of the HS Library, and celebrated the month by doing lots of reading. As we continue on with the month, be sure to look for Famous First lines and Poetry celebrations around school. It’s not too late to get a team for the Book Quiz or try to earn a Bagel for a Book, so sign up now!

national honor society

The DAA Chapter of the National Honor Society is happy to announce the implementation of a great initiative for the female students at DAA. NHS members Meghan Tuttle and Ozgu Aydin explain:

"Given the opportunity to create an initiative with NHS, we instantly thought of something the school was lacking: sanitary pad dispensers in the bathrooms. Initially, we began by researching and reaching out to providers, but faced setbacks and had our initiative postponed due to its complexity. Nevertheless, we were determined to make this happen as soon as possible, so we brought up our idea to Ms. Murphy, who enthusiastically obliged. We are excited to announce that by Friday, March 11th, the installation of the dispensers will be complete! We thank admin for taking this cause seriously and being so proactive. We hope that students having access to these necessary products will aid in creating a more comfortable and efficient learning environment, where each student can feel supported by the school, and ready to learn."

ms/hs musical - legally blonde

What a show! The MS/HS Musical production of Legally Blonde wraps up on Friday, March 11th after a run of four successful shows. The cast and crew battled through five months of changing Covid restrictions and have managed to put together an incredible show.

Cast and Crew are students from grades 6-12. It was truly a collaborative effort. 

Special thanks to Riandi Weyers, Sarah Hall, Mel Eversteyn, Dave Holland, JoAnn Porterfield, Ruby Ambrocio, Mahesh Rajaopal, Alex Bolshakova, Lillian Mackey, Jesse Oswald, Tayo Aderibigbe, DAAPA volunteers, the entire Operations Team and many more!

GEMS Alumni app

Seniors! Have you registered for the alumni APP?  Remember to stay connected beyond DAA using the app.  Here's a link to register for an upcoming session.   Register for the alumni webinar HERE.


HS General Email: 


HS Attendance Secretary

Roma Agtarap / 04 704 9747 / r.agtarap_daa@gemsedu.com

HS Secretary to Principals

Nashmia Saleem/ 04 704 9723 / n.saleem1_daa@gemsedu.com 

HS Secretary to Counselors

Alvin Agtarap/04 704 9831 / a.agtarap_daa@gemsedu.com 
Gr 9: Ms. JoAnn Porterfield A-Z https://jporterfielddaa.youcanbook.me  
Grades 10-12: Katrina Watson: (A-B) https://katrinawatson-4.youcanbook.me/  
Rhiana Courlander: (C-I) https://rhiana-2.youcanbook.me  
Phillip Wenturine: (J-Phi) https://mrphillipwenturine.youcanbook.me/  
Trisha Johnson: (Phil-Z) https://mstrishajohnson.youcanbook.me/  
HS Principal: Tammy Jochinket.jochinke_daa@gemsedu.com
Assistant HS Principal: Jim Atkinsonj.atkinson_daa@gemsedu.com
Assistant HS Principal: Joshua Doubledayj.doubleday_daa@gemsedu.com
High School IB Coordinator: Katie Sheffieldk.sheffield_daa@gemsedu.com
High School Dean of Students: Tara Oswaldt.oswald_daa@gemsedu.com