Dassel-Cokato Schools

The Dassel-Cokato School Board meets the second and fourth Monday of the month at the district office, located on the high school/middle school campus. School board members are Andy Bohnsack; Chuck Nelson; Bill Aho, board chair; Dave Sangren; Cindy Miller; and Kathy Grochow.

Updated August 2021

The Dassel-Cokato School District continues to be successful, due to the strong relationships it has with the communities of Dassel and Cokato, and families who live there.

In 2014, DC High School made the top 30 of 610 high schools in the state of Minnesota. For this achievement, the school received a silver medal from US News & World Report, which works with the American Institute for Research in Washington, DC to generate the report, based on “the key principle that a great high school must serve all its students well, not just those who are college-bound.” It uses state proficiency benchmarks as indicators. Schools were also assessed on the degree in which they provide college-level coursework.

To achieve its goals, the DC School District strives to keep a healthy fund balance, competitive contracts, and reasonable class sizes. The school board’s leadership is student-centered and conservative, continuing a long tradition of sound governance.

In addition to maintaining and improving programs for students, the district is able to provide high-quality facilities for both academics and extracurriculars.  The school district is committed to cost-efficiency, while updating and adding facilities and works to minimize any tax impact for all stakeholders.   In 2015, Cokato Elementary added four new kindergarten rooms, while Dassel Elementary added two.  In 2020, the high school’s south parking was completely redone, reconfiguring parking spaces and sidewalks.  An additional driveway entrance was added on the east side of the middle school/high school campus and created better traffic flow and bus routing. In 2021 the swimming pool’s mostly original HVAC system was updated.  The new system meets industry standards, creates more air circulation, lowers humidity, and creates a better, more enjoyable spectator experience.

The school district’s kindergarden through grade 12 student population is approximately 2,300. Schools include Dassel Elementary, located in the heart of Dassel; Cokato Elementary, located next to Peterson Park near downtown Cokato; the Dassel-Cokato Alternative Learning Center (ALC), located on Highway 12 in Cokato; and the Dassel-Cokato High School/Middle School, and the Early Childhood Family Education Center, all located between Dassel and Cokato on US Highway 12.

The Cokato and Dassel communities combined districts in 1972, building a new high school facility on Hwy. 12. In addition, the middle school was built connected to the high school facility, opening its doors to its first students in 1990.

The performing arts center (PAC), an 800-seat auditorium used for a variety of school and community events, was the most recent addition to the complex in 2004. Along with the PAC came a 2,000-seat gymnasium, and a new football field and track.

In all levels of learning, Dassel-Cokato Schools teach the pillars of character education: respect, responsibility, resiliency, integrity, compassion, and understanding diversity.

Along with the pillars, the schools have adopted the Olweus anti-bullying program, teaching students to step up and stop bullying inside and outside of school.

Our student to Chromebook ratio is currently 1:1 in grades four through 12 and will include third grade beginning fall 2021.

Strong partnerships and a dedication to every student are at the foundation of the DC Public School’s tradition of excellence.

The school can be reached at 320-286-4100. Visit www.isd466.org for further information on each school, and a staff directory.  Find us on Facebook at @DasselCokatoSchoolDistrict.

Elementary schools

The Dassel-Cokato School District features “neighborhood” schools in their communities. These schools in Dassel and Cokato are committed to high academic standards and strong character expectations. The Character Pillars were developed as part of a community study conducted by the Search Institute. Business people, school staff, administrators, clergy, law enforcement, students, parents, and patrons of the district served on a task force to fashion the Character Pillars to fit the vision and goals for families and children in the Dassel-Cokato communities. The schools provide numerous special programs for varied learners. Among them are the “STARS” and “Jump Start” programs for at-risk students, and the “Odyssey” program for high-potential students. All students at Dassel and Cokato elementary schools participate in school-wide themed activities throughout the year.

The communities of Dassel and Cokato, and the patrons of the Dassel-Cokato School District, have maintained their commitment to the youth of the community. The district vision statement reads “Educate * Innovate * Succeed.” The district mission statement reads: “In partnership with our communities and families, we will educate and inspire all learners to maximize their potential, promote lifelong learning, and become contributing members of society. Staff members, students, parents, and community members are committed to this vision, mission and the tradition of excellence in our schools for future generations to come.”

Cokato Elementary has an enrollment of about 500 students in kindergarten through fourth grade. It is located at 200 Fifth Street SW in Cokato. To contact Cokato Elementary, call 320-286-4100, ext. 1300. Additional information for Cokato Elementary can be found online at www.isd466.org/domain/37.  Find the school on Facebook at @CokatoElementary. 

Dassel Elementary has approximately 350 students enrolled. It is located at 131 William Avenue E in Dassel. To reach Dassel Elementary, call 320-286-4100, ext. 1500.  Additional information for Dassel Elementary can be found online at, www.isd466.org/domain/35.  Find the school on Facebook at @dasselelementary. 

Middle school

As part of its mission, the Dassel-Cokato Middle School program is designed to meet the special needs of middle-level students, grades five through eight, with a program that strives to be transitional in nature. It provides students with a “bridge between the self-contained classroom of the elementary school, and the departmentalized curriculum of the high school.”

Dassel-Cokato Middle School has approximately 700 students enrolled. It is located at 4852 Reardon Ave. SW Ste. 1500, Cokato.  To reach Dassel-Cokato Middle School, call 320-286-4100, ext. 1600.  Additional information for Dassel-Cokato Middle School can be found online at www.isd466.org/domain/42.  Find the school on Facebook at @dasselcokatomiddleschool. 

High school

Dassel-Cokato High School staff believes in promoting positive relationships, personal responsibility, and academic rigor in order to prepare students for success in a changing world.

Along with a range of academic opportunities, including advanced placement (AP) and college-credit courses, the high school offers a variety of extracurricular and cocurricular activities for those interested in participating in athletics and fine arts.  The school also offers a wide array of classes in career and technical education (CTE), including, but not limited to, agriculture, industrial technology, and family and consumer sciences.

DCHS staff believes in being responsive to the needs of students, and challenging them to reach their potential. The goal is to always prepare each and every individual student for whatever path they intend to take.

Dassel-Cokato HIgh School has approximately 600 students enrolled. It is located at 4852 Reardon Ave. SW Ste. 1800, Cokato.  To reach Dassel-Cokato High School, call 320-286-4100, ext. 1600.  Additional information for Dassel-Cokato High School can be found online at www.isd466.org/domain/43.  Find the school on Facebook at @dasselcokatohighschool.

Community Education

Dassel-Cokato Community Education provides lifelong learning experiences for people of all ages, abilities, and cultures through programs and services offered year-round.  Programming includes youth enrichment and recreation, adult basic education, adult enrichment and recreation, aquatics (including Red Cross swimming lessons), safety classes, and special events.  DC Community Education also provides school-age child care, through Charger Kids Club, before and after school, non-school days, and all day in the summer.  Activities and enrichment courses vary throughout the seasons. 

Dassel-Cokato Community Education is located at 4852 Reardon Ave. SW Ste. 1400, Cokato.  To reach Dassel-Cokato Community Education, call 320-286-4120.  Additional information for Dassel-Cokato Community Education can be found online at www.isd466.org/domain/22.  Find the community education program on Facebook at @DCCommunityEd. 

Dassel-Cokato Early Childhood

The Dassel-Cokato Early Childhood Center is located on the Dassel-Cokato High School/Middle School campus, and its programming is under the umbrella of Dassel-Cokato Community Education.  Providing services to families with children ages birth through kindergarten, programming includes Early Childhood Family Education (ECFE), school readiness Play ‘n’ Learn Preschool, and early childhood screening.

Dassel-Cokato Early Childhood is located at 4852 Reardon Ave. SW Ste. 1400, Cokato.  To reach Dassel-Cokato Early Childhood, call 320-286-4120.  Additional information for Dassel-Cokato Early Childhood can be found online at www.isd466.org/domain/44.  Find DCCE on Facebook at @DCCommunityEd.