D99 Board acknowledges Royalty Steppers at Feb. 27 meeting


Khita Cunningham

The D99 Board recognizes the Royalty Steppers’ performance at the spirit week assembly.

On Feb. 10, 2023, the DGS Royalty Steppers performed at the spirit week assembly. To recognize the steppers further, Principal Arwen Lyp featured the team in the D99 Board’s “Student Perspectives” panel during the Feb. 27 meeting.

“I’m really proud of our step team… they are the number one crowd favorite at every assembly we have. And the group of students representing the team tonight has been competing all over the area, they’ve been doing really well at competitions – second place in the last one. They just say ‘yes’ to every competition that comes their way… they are continuing to gain a really strong reputation in our community,” Lyp said.

Security guard Alice Freelon has been the Royalty Steppers’ coach for five years now, and she also spoke at the meeting on the past and present of step.

“I think what makes our team so amazing is students come looking for community, and although we are inclusive to all, our team is majority African American. Step goes back all the way to the 1500s; it was used for coding and in languages, and it was also used for entertainment as well. Nowadays you’ll see it more with African American sororities and fraternities, and our girls use it just as entertainment,” Freelon said.

On top of recognizing the step team for their accomplishments, the D99 Board announced that the Parent-Teacher Advisory Committee will return in-person on April 19, 2023. Board member Scott Wuggazer explained what the committee entails.

“The parent’s feedback has been amazing. Usually we talk about providing discipline data, special education data, increase in social work support, support of our PAF [Preventing Academic Failure] program, things like that, so we really do get some excellent feedback from parents in this meeting. We haven’t picked the school yet, but I think we usually have two volunteers from the board to be in person with us,” Wuggazer said.