The student news site of Omaha North High Magnet School

Dappens live the Viking life

September 26, 2014

For some, North High is just a school, they go here for a few years and move on with their lives.

For Alan and Jann Dappen and their three daughters Chelsea, Arial, and Kari, North has been a staple of their lives. Kari and her sisters have gone here, and Alan and Jann even met here.

Mr. and Mrs. Dappen met here at North High back in fall of 1988 when they had plan period together. They kept it on the down low. The first day after they got engaged one of Mrs. Dappen’s student started to say “Who would be stupid enough to marry you, like who?” and he went on and on until Mrs. Dappen got the only student that knew who he was that it was Mr. Dappen.

He then ran to Mr. Dappen and told him “don’t believe anything [Mrs. Dappen] says.” After a year of dating they got married in 1991, which was attended by many of North High staff.

“It took Mr. Haynes a while to get use to the new names.” Mrs. Dappen said.

24 years later all of their kids have been their students. Kari Dappen, junior, is their last one.

Mr. and Mrs. Dappen almost rarely each other during the day. In the past they had plan period twice and lunch together once. When they do see each other during the day, they wave, but always call each other Mr. or Mrs. Dappen.

For their children it’s the same rule, they try to stay away from using mom and dad.

“We don’t want to hear every little thing our kids did, if it’s something they would call home for, we want to hear it. We want them to be teenagers and not worry about everything they say,” Mrs. Dappen said.

Kari, or any of their daughters never got special treatment.

For Mrs. Dappen, it is harder for her to call home on daughter’s friends, because she doesn’t want them to be mad at her daughter. Mrs. Dappen was easier on her daughter’s friends in regard to calling home, so she would wait more than she would normally.

For Mr. Dappen, he was harder on his oldest daughter when she showed up late on the first day of Physics class.

Normally, he would let it slide, but to not let other students get the idea that she gets special treatment, he gave her detention. That was the only detention Chelsea got in high school.

For Kari there is not any special treatment, but there are some perks. If she needs something like their signature, they’re always down the hall, and they can turn in paperwork for her.

Chelsea Dappen would convince other North high staff to give her sodas out of Mrs. Dappen’s fridge. Also, all the kids got a lot of babysitting jobs from other North staff.

For Kari, it’s normal to have her parents as teacher. Other than having to come to school at 7:00am and staying after school in homework help room, her high school day is just like everyone else’s.

It’s actually weirder for her friends that her parents are teachers, and outside of school, Mr. and Mrs. Dappen want to be called Alan and Jann by them. It does get weird when other North High staff comes to their house, but Kari keeps the formality, other than for longtime friends.


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