Delaware Military Academy
|Delaware Military Academy|
|Talley Hall Building
Scholarship, Leadership, Citizenship
|112 Middleboro Road
Wilmington, Delaware, 19804
|School type||Charter High School|
|Founder||Charles Baldwin, Jack Wintermantel|
|School district||Red Clay Consolidated School District|
|Superintendent & CEO||Jack Wintermantel|
|Hours in school day||8½|
|School color(s)||Blue and Gold|
|Athletics conference||Diamond State Conference|
|Accreditation||Middle States (Rated Superior School 2006-2012)|
|Communities served||Newport, DE
Greater chance of acceptance for applicants residing in Red Clay School District.
The Delaware Military Academy is a publicly funded charter high school in Wilmington, Delaware.The Academy was founded in 2003 by Charles Baldwin, a retired Master Chief Petty Officer from the United States Navy, and Jack Wintermantel, a retired Colonel from the United States Army. All students are required to participate in the Naval Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps, or NJROTC. It enrolls about 560 cadets in grades nine through twelve, and enjoys academic recognition from the state of Delaware and the United States Navy. As it is a public charter school, there are no admission requirements. The school utilizes an application and interview, but its selections are governed by charter school law.
The Delaware Military Academy is a school that lies within the boundaries of the Red Clay Consolidated School District, but as a charter school it is not part of the school district itself. The school is on Middleboro Road in Wilmington, Delaware, adjacent to nearby Banning Park, a local housing development, and several light industrial and commercial operations. Due to the lack of athletic facilities on campus, students often walk to Banning Park for sports practices or physical education classes. Other nearby schools have reached agreements with the Academy, allowing it to use their athletic facilities and fields. There are plans to create these facilities on campus in the near-future. Because it is a charter school, it serves students from across the county, and employs faculty from as far away as the city of Dover, over an hour away in driving distance.
There are currently two buildings on campus: Talley Hall and the unnamed "Naval Science building." The two buildings are separated by a parking lot and sidewalk island. Talley Hall contains strictly academic classrooms, and is where most of the students' academic education will take place. In addition, the school's main office and nurse's office are in Talley Hall. The Naval Science building contains classrooms used for military instruction, as well as classrooms used by the science department. It also contains the school cafeteria, (referred to as a "mess hall"), gymnasium (or "drill deck"), weight room, NJROTC supply office, Naval Science Instructor offices, the cadet staff office, and two dressing rooms (added in 2009). In 2010, the school bought a large sum of land around the campus and a parade field surrounded by a paved track and additional parking was completed behind the academy in 2012. There are plans to add a third building, a "Language building", which will house the school's English language arts and foreign language classrooms in the near-future as funds become available.
As a high school in which every student is also a cadet, the Delaware Military Academy has a special organizational structure. In terms of faculty, there are typical academic teachers and administrative positions, but there is a significant military presence as well. In addition to some academic teachers being retired from the United States armed forces, there are seven Naval Science Instructors, or NSIs, who oversee the military aspect of the school. Six of these NSIs teach Naval Science classes to the student. There is also a student organizational structure, referred to as a Chain of Command. This chain of command depicts the roles of each cadet in the school, ranging from "Squad Leader," (no special responsibility), to "Regimental Commander," the cadet in charge of the entire school's military section. Various positions are available to the students, in various levels of the organization. There are leaders for each subdivision of the Regiment, and for each subdivision of that, etc. Special positions are also available, such as "Public Affairs Officer" and "Web Site Manager." Much of the school's activity is handled by the cadets themselves, only traveling to the staff for approval and supervision.
The school's student organization resembles that of a United States military organization, as per JROTC standards set forth by the military. However, the school differs slightly from most NJROTC units, as the standards were created with the thought of a small section of students being devoted to JROTC. Considering that every student is a member of NJROTC, many standards are applied differently.
The entire student body is referred to as a "Regiment." Within the Regiment are two "Battalions" within each Battalion there are four "Companies" a student is assigned to a company based on when he or she has Naval Science class each year, and the companies are named the same way. Each company consists of four to five "platoons," named according to the phonetic alphabet used by the United States military. A student's platoon is simply his or her Naval Science class. The platoon is then further divided into three "squads," each one containing an equal number of students. Squads are randomly assigned to students by the students' instructor.
Core values and honor code
In keeping with the military atmosphere of the school, new students are introduced early on to the concept of "core values." Delaware Military Academy takes directly from the Navy in this, and maintains core values of "honor, courage, and commitment." It is expected that all students adhere to these values at all times when representing the school, whether actually in school or not.
Another item taken from the military is the concept of an "honor code." Delaware Military Academy's honor code is outlined in its school handbook, which details its purpose and requirements. In the military, there is an inherent sense of trust between superiors and subordinates. Seeking to recreate this trust in an academic setting, the school set up an honor code which all students are required to adhere to.
A major facet of the school's identity is the relationship between its academic areas and its military areas. Delaware Military Academy offers an entirely college-preparatory academic curriculum, with "Honors" classes available to students in grades ten through twelve, and two Advanced Placement classes available to those who have completed the prerequisite courses. Class selection is poor in comparison to other high schools in the same area, due to a low number of class periods per day (five) and a large portion of each student's schedule occupied by Naval Science.
All students must take Naval Science I through Naval Science IV, one class each year.
The Academy has been recognized by both the state of Delaware and the United States Navy for academic achievement. The state has awarded the title of "Superior" to the school for high scores on standardized testing, for five consecutive years. The Navy awarded the title "Distinguished Unit with Academic Honors" to the school the very first year the school was eligible. With that title came nine appointments to three military service academies, three each to the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD; the United States Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, CO; and the United States Military Academy in West Point, NY. Graduates from the school attend each of these academies, as well as various other military academies and universities throughout the United States.
DMA is considered the best high school level military academy in the United States, and it was the first full time JROTC high school in the nation. With the best overall educational statistics in Delaware, DMA has the lowest dropout rate, the highest retention rate, and over 92 percent who attend college receive scholarships. Over 97 percent of all graduates obtain employment within 30 days of graduation, and many of those while attending university, and/or continuing jobs held in high school. Over 78 percent of graduates are working in their chosen fields of endeavor. Over 57 percent of all graduates earn at least a Bachelor's degree, and, the latest outstanding statistic, just tabulated, is over 36 percent of the first few classes earn a Master's degree within three years of earning their undergraduate degree. These are the best and most outstanding educational statistics in Delaware, public or private.
The Delaware Military Academy offers a variety of both varsity and club sports to students. In addition to the typical junior varsity and varsity teams, certain sports also maintain a "freshmen" team reserved specifically for ninth grade students. The school is a member of the Delaware Interscholastic Athletic Association and participates in the Diamond State Conference. The following are sports which the school offers:
- Cross Country
- Field Hockey
- Ice Hockey
- Winter Track
In 2008-2011, a graduate served on the United States Olympic Shooting Team as an Alternate, and bested all challenges at the DNG range. In 2010, the Seahawks Ice Hockey Team became the first Delaware Military Academy team to go undefeated 19-0 and give the school its first team championship by defeating Hodgson Vo-Tech High School in the Flight B Conference Finals. In 2012, the Seahawks Ice Hockey Team became Delaware Scholastic Hockey Association Varsity Champions, defeating A. I. duPont High School in the Flight A Conference Finals. This was the team's first varsity championship and DMA's second overall sports championship.
The school receives the limited state funding available to charter schools. It therefore must raise funds for capital improvements and student activities through donations and fees. The school's "Superintendent" often meets with military groups regarding financial assistance for the school and promotes the school with legislative and administrative agencies. In debt from building construction, funding is not available for all desired technology and conveniences; for example, meal preparation facilities are limited to microwaves spread throughout the cafeteria.
- Delaware Military Academy Website
- SeahawksSports.com - Delaware Military Academy Sports Website
- Delaware Military Academy featured on WHYY-TV
- Satellite Image
- "DMA Ice Hockey Wins School's first sports team championship". Community Pub. Retrieved 5 March 2010.
- "Team effort gives hockey title to DMA". DelawareOnline. Retrieved 25 February 2012.