DeSoto offers a well-balanced educational experience in the early grades laying a solid foundation for a lifetime of learning. The elementary programs continue to be academically strong. A phonetic approach to reading is emphasized early on to prepare students for the learning of important reading skills taught in the middle and upper elementary grades. Students spend a portion of each day in computer, art, music, physical education and library classes. Upper elementary children have the opportunity to be involved in peewee football, basketball and cheerleading. Students compete in an art contest, spelling bee, and science fair locally. Each year, many DeSoto students advance to the Mississippi Association of Independent Schools (MAIS) contests at the district and state levels. Students enjoy holiday classroom parties, a variety of field trips, a Halloween carnival, the production of a Christmas musical, May Day and an end of the year award ceremony. Both elementary and middle school students support cancer research at St. Jude's Hospital by participating in the annual Math-A-Thon.