Monday, October 3, 2011

Tune in at 6 PM for the October 3 Board Meeting

Work Session and Board Meeting beginning at 6 pm. Tune in to Comcast Channel 24 or stream it live on the DCSS website here. Download the agenda here.

105 comments:

Cerebration said...

Speakers included a compliment to the good job at Chestnut, a plug for the International Community Charter, say NO to the cell tower at Briarlake, a smooth transition for the Museum School Charter, encouraging perfect school attendance - a program from the DeKalb Solicitor General, a DCSS parent who shared that 90% of the county's incarcerated are high school drop outs, a senior at Redan who stated that she is being denied a stable education by the administration - they were told that they lost their science teacher due to a lack of student interest, and crowded classrooms, shutting down AP classes and replacing them with regular college prep, outdated computers, not enough food to feed all students, followed by Sandy Purkett, supporter of the Great Redan High School. (BTW - that Blue Thunder Band is sooooo awesome!) 26 Redan seniors completed PILOT and earned over $3 million in scholarships last year.

Dunwoody Mom said...

You have to love Sandy's enthusiasm for her school. We need more of that in DCSS.

Cerebration said...

Billy Jones, SW DeKalb parent. Shared positive activities at SW. Email program highlighting scholarships, internships, and community opportunities. They set AMOs - Annual Measurable Objectives. (Good idea!) Establishing the ODS - Organization of DeKalb Students. (Another great idea!)

Willie Pringle - "a voice for the voiceless". Thankful to have a superintendent sitting in the chair. Parent at SW. Children are victims in the educational arena. Children are being short-changed. Called for a forensic audit. System wastes too much money and students suffer. $20 million more into the building at SW that has already had $50 million... money needs to go to the classroom. Not lawyers. Low level employees and teachers need a raise. To Dr. A - please clean house.

Latasha Walker - Wish I had a jolly speech, but I have lobbied for better management of school funds, but funds disappear. DESA has been bypassed in funding. Some schools have received over $70 million. What about safety? We were moved to an unsafe area. Cars broken in. AC copper stolen twice. Homeless living on the grounds. Illnesses and H1N1. We begged you not to move us but you didn't listen. Lost a teacher due to enrollment drop. When will the board care about the poorest and most challenged. What about the plight of south DeKalb?

Cerebration said...

Nichole Duff. ODE/teacher. Welcome Dr. A with open arms and hope. Thank you for listening to employees, students and community. Important to be a good listener. Remind everyone it's breast cancer awareness month.

Farakhan. I can't follow him - ever. In the name of Allah... Gave out an address for some reason. May 12, 1984 - we need to be educated as to why white people brought us into slavery and why God brought them to do it. (More preaching...) He inserts things about education, but basically he preaches. He said something about a DeKalb police - he asked for desks, chalk, chalkboards. Basically stated an ad for Dr Louis Farakhan's march in Philadelphia ... stock up on provisions - the end is coming!

Cerebration said...

Excuse me, I have to run out for canned goods now.

Cerebration said...

Really. Can someone not put a stop to this religious/racist ranting at every single board meeting? This guy and his friends continue to use this televised forum as a preaching platform - religious beliefs are spewed all over the mic. (What about the separation of church and state?) And then - last month - one of them made some hideous comment bashing Jews - blaming Jews for all the ills of blacks and requesting that some book on the subject be part of the curriculum.

All Tom ever says is "thank you Mr. Farkahan". Tom - this is outrageous. You should not be allowing your televised meeting to serve as a platform for religious and racial rants. Shut these guys down. Please.

Cerebration said...

Legal fees -- over $3 million over for the month. Turk added it as a line item. Says legal has been a challenge for a few years. Also a million over on electricity. Nancy asked if it's a facilities issue. Turk: Three variables: Environmental (weather), no way of knowing about rate increases, set budget may not be the way to handle.

atl said...

"Legal fees -- over $3 million over for the month."

That's 46 teachers for DCSS for the year (including benefits0. We could hire an extra math and science teacher for every middle and high school for the $3,000,000 we spent in legal fees in one month.

Cerebration said...

Womack: For Miss Jester's information, I spoke with the public service commission and he was indignant. Womack says he asked for a price break. Said it was due to the atomic plants being built (3). Blamed GA Power. Turk can't control. We should take a more proactive view with public utilities. Walker: We all have issues with our utilities. I don't want the public to get the impression based on the question asked that you are not monitoring. We have no control over legal fees. Can't budget. I'm concerned that the kind of question that was asked would give the misimpression that the board is not doing due diligence. (Much more rambling on the subject.) We're fortunate to have Marcus - want to go on the record and make that clear. Edler: Out of control electricity - you might want to consider our calendar. Perhaps we could consider moving the start time later rather than the dog days of summer.

Dunwoody Mom said...

And there goes Eugene Walker pooh-poohing Nancy Jester's concerns over legal fees and electric bills.

Yes, Eugene Walker, you do have some control over legal fees. Just settle the darn lawsuit and quit making lawyers rich over this.

And when the school system is a million dollars over budget on electricity, someone is not doing their job.

Sheesh...how can we rid this board of Eugene Walker?

Cerebration said...

Sarah: We need to hire a full time lobbyist to keep up with what's going on at the Capitol. Ms Knighton does a good job, but she has other responsibilities.

Cerebration said...

Tom: We pay more than the state's rate for natural gas. Turk said that last year we reduced our projections for utilities. (Sounds like an easy way to temporarily balance the budget.)

McChesney: Gas South does give us a break. Maybe we need to get others to do the same. Maybe we need to set our estimates higher. Go by our highest year.

Anonymous said...

Such great meeting notes- thanks Cere!
Just a quick correction- Ms. Jester noted that we were approximately $300,000 over budget for legal fees for the past month- not $3 million.
I just looked it up on the financial report- the exact number is $289,582. (The annual budget for legal fees is $3.4 million).
Still unacceptable, but not quite as bad.

Cerebration said...

Oh! Major math error on my part! Thanks for the correction. Actually, I'm trying to do several things at once here so all you all can just chime in and keep on reporting in the comments - thanks!!!!!

Anonymous said...

So frustrating to hear Walker's comments about the Internal Audit report. He just wants to continue the days of covering up problems.

"Once you give out information about these people and schools it becomes really sensationalized and these persons or schools are tainted forever. So before you go and say negative stuff about them make sure all your ducks are in order."

He went on, but essentially I interpret his comments as trying to scare Gary Babst into keeping as much quiet as possible.

If there is a violation found by the audit we have a right to know!

Cerebration said...

Donna's not happy that the Museum School won't have a high enough percentage of free & reduced lunch students as compared to other schools in the area. I"m charged with representing every student and I'm concerned about equity across the district. There is already perceived inequity. Asks for numbers to look at before next week's vote. Board will get training on charter schools.

Anonymous said...

What happenned with items 7 and 8? Did ICS get approved to use Medlock?

Anonymous said...

Donna's right, if very euphemistic, in noting that TMS's CRCT scores probably won't stay the same once it has the same demographics as the rest of DCSS

Anonymous said...

Life isn't fair. The children at the Museum School were chosen through a lottery system. Are we going to now have to focus on free and reduced lunches-which I have personally witnessed not being true numbers in several schools. I have watched teachers and principals tell parents how to fill the forms out, so that they their child gets free lunch, the school gets another student receiving a free lunch, and the parent is driving a BMW. Free lunch is not a number/statics that I think is a good measure, as there are no audits to the forms.

Anonymous said...

Yes items 7&8--letting ICS lease Medlock went on consent agenda with no negative comments from the board. Nicole said that the intention is to bring them a lease next month.

FINALLY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Dunwoody Mom said...

Why do I feel so depressed after I watch a BOE meeting? Seriously.

MedlockMama said...

@Anon 8:20
The ICS items were presented without much comment. Ms. Copelin-Woods had a question regarding whether the school would be able to cover the required repairs/modifications to the Medlock facility, to which the answer was made that ICS would be presenting a budget to DCSS and that the rent which ICS currrently pays to lease non-DCSS properties would likely be applied toward repairs/modifications. It was also clarified for Mr. Bowen that agenda item 8 was a letter of intent (signaling DCSS's intent to enter discussions with ICS regarding a lease agreement for Medlock property) and that the lease agreement will be presented for approval in the following month.

Anonymous said...

Many facility audits revealed the old, single pane windows - very poorly insulated- you can check them out online. This impacts our electrical expenses. So do constantly breaking HVAC units that require the few working ones in a building to overwork to cool the spaces. It's not just about rates and weather. As for Walker, we do all have utility issues but many take steps to increase their home's efficiency to decrease their utility bills- DCSS, why don't you try that too instead of always blaming someone or something else? When a concern is raised, it seems the powers that be could say "thank you for sharing your concerns - if you have ideas for us, we'd be interested in having a conversation. Let's set up a time to talk after the meeting". It is really that simple in a healthy system.

Anonymous said...

@ Dunwoody Mom, because you care about the kids, your kids, all of the kids in the county. You realize that those in charge don't care half as much as you do. It's depressing to hear excuse after excuse after excuse, with no solutions and being told everything is just fine when you know it's not.

Anonymous said...

Sandy has enthusiasm, but when her enthusiasm starts to bleed over into policy and things that affect other schools (SPLOST comes to mind), she becomes a lot less cute and peppy to me. Things are not GREAT and no matter how many times you say it, it doesn't make it so. In fact, the nervous girl before her outlined several things that are far from perfect.

Dunwoody Mom said...

Eugene Walker blaming Georgia Power for the huge electric expense for DCSS is just laughable. It is also just further evidence that this board does not/cannot actually do the research and take the actions necessary to properly run this school system.

A huge amount of money was spent on doing facility assessments for every building in the DCSS inventory. All one has to do is look at those facility assessments to understand much of the problem. Our facilities are old, have poor roofing, poor hvac systems, 30, 40 year old windows - that is the main culprit with regards to the electric bills. Instead of spending millions of dollars in legal fees over a suit that should have been settled long ago, or millions upon millions on "programs" that do not work, maintenance on the school buildings should have been taking place.

I would like to know how many board members have actually reviewed the facility assessments for their district? The school system as a whole? Very few, I'm sure. You see, the "blame game" takes no effort, while actually digging and investigating, well, this is something most of the board members cannot/will not do.

Anonymous said...

We do need to start school later and go later. 90 percent of the time is is much hotter in August than in late May/June.

Cerebration said...

I love Sandy Purkett too, but you're right. Her words may have only diluted the young lady before her who bravely approached the microphone. Sandy did elude to losing good teachers, but she didn't validate anything else the girl said. Sarah often makes statements about Redan High School and the condition it's in. The school really does need attention. That said, I think it's curious that the male student on the board was convinced that Chamblee was getting even more renovation on top of some kind of big renovation just a few years ago. Luckily, Barbara Colman set him straight. Chamblee is in horrible condition and has been for years. They have had no SPLOST renovations except maybe some leaky roof and other repairs. Who is spreading misinformation like that? I can guess that it's political. If the "powers that be" in south DeKalb can convince residents that their schools are suffering, but the "north" end schools are covered in gold, then voila! another vote in office!

I am glad that Dr. Atkinson is visiting every school. She will learn for herself that there is no north/south divide as far as facilities go. Hopefully, she will have the wisdom to see what it will take to bring all of our students' success levels up. She has an opportunity to leave a real legacy upon a school system that has been broken and suffering for quite a long time. It's a tall order. I wish her the best.

Anonymous said...

I'm appalled by the lack of opportunities the Redan senior described.

The faculty pages linked from the Redan school website show only one AP science course, AP Biology. There are no pages showing any AP social studies courses. Faculty pages may be an inaccurate survey because some teachers don't have them. Still, it is a shame that Redan students apparently can't take the popular AP US History, AP World History, AP Econ (popular because they meet graduation requirements), not to mention other courses offered elsewhere in DeKalb. These days taking some AP courses is an important part of preparation for college.

So a Redan student has to escape to a magnet school to take AP courses (or even be sure that there will be enough lunch in the cafeteria)? I hope someone from Redan is on this blog and will tell the larger community more about these issues.

Cerebration said...

I agree. Sandy Purkett does a fabulous job of getting millions upon millions in scholarships for these kids. She needs the support of the school system to ensure that these kids she is sending off to college are absolutely as prepared as their counterparts when they arrive on campus. If we have to rotate in a teacher to only teach one AP course a day at Redan, then we should do it. I recently read an article about Atlanta area private schools and many of them tout the fact that they offer a plethora of AP courses and that a vast majority of their students score a 3 or higher on the AP exam. This should be our goal too.

Dunwoody Mom said...

Yeah, that statement about Chamblee HS was just bizarre. Unless the student was thinking about Chamblee Middle School????

Anonymous said...

(this is 8:06 again) Cere, I suspect the problem is lack of interested students combined with large class sizes, so it wouldn't be solved by rotating in teachers. The Redan student mentioned crowded classrooms and losing a teacher "due to a lack of student interest."

If you generally have to have 32 or 34 per class (I forget the number these days) and only 16 students sign up to take an AP course, it may be hard to find the flexibility to afford to offer it.

Dunwoody Mom said...

According to the DCSS website, 194 AP exams were taken by Redan students last school year. So, it would seem there was just more than 1 AP class offered.

The issue with AP classes is that there is a class size requirement. If not enough students sign-up for the class then the course will be cancelled.

There is also the DOLA which offers AP courses. My child has a friend who is taking a couple of AP courses on-line that she could not fit into her schedule otherwise.

Cerebration said...

Maybe a PR campaign is in order. Maybe students need to be encouraged to try the AP courses. Maybe the school system can work with Sandy to revive the courses at Redan.

DM - what is the class size requirement? Where did you find the exam info?

Anonymous said...

DM, thanks. Cere, after reading her post I went looking and found the new test scores page. It is at http://www.dekalb.k12.ga.us/test-scores

I only looked at science and social studies faculty pages because the student mentioned science and because social studies AP courses are very popular at the schools I know. No doubt Redan offers AP courses in other deparments.

Dunwoody Mom said...

Cere, I'm not sure what the class size requirement is now - I think it went upto around 22. I'll see if I can find out.

The test scores are located under the Community Portal on the DCSS website. Here is the link to the AP info.

http://www.dekalb.k12.ga.us/www/documents/test-scores/advanced-placement-(2006-2011).pdf

Cerebration said...

Thank you! That is a very interesting chart! I think this topic could be a post of its own. These AP test numbers are all over the board - from lows of 27 at Elizabeth Andrews, 77 at Stone Mt and 92 at Clarkston to highs of 982 at Chamblee, 1,077 at Lakeside and 1,128 at Arabia.

Anonymous said...

In the public engagement session last week at AIC, we had two seniors from Stone Mountain HS in our group. Very bright, intelligent kids. Their concern was not having kids in their AP class that did not deserve to be there nor had the skill set to perform in the AP class.

She explained that due to "Class Size", the AP class was filled with high performing "General Population" students due to overcrowding in the regular classes.

They explained that the GP kids held back the AP class and the teacher had to teach to the GP kids instead of the more advanced AP kids.

Sad, sad story.

Anonymous said...

@dunwoodymom,
Of course Gene Walker doesn't want Nancy Jester pointing out anything about legal fees. He's the one that made sure Alexander and Associates continues to bill the taxpayer when one law firm would do. That was his famous "I see color" speech. What's interesting is that no one else on the board is talking about these large over budget items. I hope she keeps it up.

Dunwoody Mom said...

AP classes are open to every student. The discussion of whether they should be or not is an interesting one. I know that Jay Matthews, education writer for The Washington Post, believes that actually taking the course is more important than the grade or the test score. I do believe all students should have the opportunity to take AP courses - especially if they are college-bound. I do know there are students who are not labeled "gifted" that are succeeding in these courses.

Dunwoody Mom said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Why does DCSS insist on paying for DeKalb Online Academy (DOLA) when dollars are scarce AND the Georgia Department of Education {GaDOE) provides the Georgia Virtual School (GsVS)? Both are paid for with our tax dollars, yet GaVS far surpasses DOLA.

For example, GaVS offers 22 AP courses; DOLA offers only 4. GaVS provides AP courses on 18, 16 and 14 week schedules. Plus, GaVS also provides free AP practice exams.

So, why is DCSS spending scarce tax dollars on something that is clearly second rate AND duplicates a far better program from the state?

Oh! Silly question! DCSS and its incompetent BOE wouldn't know excellence if they fell over it -- which they are not likely to do anytime soon.

For that matter, why is DCSS spending scarce tax dollars for online programs that seem to duplicate each other and that are of questionable added value when the Georgia Department of Education provides Verison's outstanding Thinkfinity program [https://www.georgiastandards.org/resources/Pages/Tools/Thinkfinity.aspx] online at NO cost? Also, Georgia Public Broadcasting provides Discovery Education statewide [http://www.discoveryeducation.com/teachers/index.cfm?campaign=flyout_teachers] at NO charge. Incredibly, DCSS also pays separately for Discovery Education. Why?

Can you spell F-R-I-E-N-D-S A-N-D F-A-M-I-L-Y?

Anonymous said...

The children at Museum schoool will be chosen by lottery only if there are more applicants than empty seats. That hasn't happened yet. If that doesn't happen preference is given to students who live in the school Tier one walking distance. If all the seats don't fill up then Tier II is the rest of the county. You are right life isn't fair-the Tier I is designed to create a no tuition private school for residents of Avondale Estates and thus while the county has 70% free and reduced lunch and low scores, the Museum school will have 14% free and reduced lunch (that is 28 out of 200 students).

Bhutrasgolly said...

There is a tension about AP courses in the minds of some students and families. There are some students who would rather make a B in physics than a C in AP phyiscs. The perception is that the lower AP grade will be determinental to college admissions or scholarships. For this reason in some schools students do not enroll in AP courses in sufficient numbers to justify the teacher allocation. In my opinion students who are willing to work are better off in an AP course with a good AP teacher.

Anonymous said...

So 1:46 are you saying The Snob, er Museum, School got approved for their elitist admission plan?

Lottery system my sweet aunt--if I could limit who can play the GA lottery that severely I might actually win.

Anonymous said...

TMS got a "dressing down" for their lack of diversity and then they got a 5 year charter renewal and the Forrest Hills elementary building.

But you know what--I haven't seen Avondale Elementary get a dressing down yet for their "lack of diversity"? They have an even narrower draw area than TMS, but it was perfectly permissible for their "administration" to drive off the efforts by Avondale Elementary Association to get the all of the community's families to attend.

When you have a SES diverse area, but only those who have no other options send their kids to the public school--that says something.

Something we have chosen to ignore for a long time.

Anonymous said...

4:16, I'm not sure if I completely understand you, but I'll forge ahead in ignorance :)

Are all AE kids eligible for Tier 1 (preferred) admission to TMS? If not, why not? Are you saying TMS kids would be refused admittance at AE, if they lived in the AE catchment area?

I understand that the inexcusable walls put up to parent involvement at AE had much to do with parents starting TMS, and by that I mean I sincerely can understand why one would want a neighborhood school when the school in the neighborhood refuses parent involvement. However, I'm not sure that justifies including only parts of the neighborhood in the new school (TMS). For pity's sake, ICS--literally across the street from TMS--admits lower SES Avondale area kids that are excluded by the Tier One acceptance rule at TMS. It's hard to see that as not meriting of a "dressing down" of TMS at bare minimum.

Anonymous said...

1124...... That is exactly the point that the gifted parents keep tr ying to make, but folks like DM can't believe that this axially happens, instead arguing that all kids benefit from such instruction. The point is, the county, indeed the country, have determined that the kids who are underperforming, in a classroom or in a school, are the only point of focus. As these kids noted, the teacher has to slow down our repeat stuff that high performers have mastered, slowing down the accelerated learners. Why dont yiu people care about this? Honestly, I don't care how they got to the point that they need acceleration, class, race, ed of parents. The fact remains that they languish without challange, and you dont care because you assume they are white middle clas kids who have options, a stretch in todays economy. And really, who cares? Aren't those middle class parents paying their fair share into the system? Should smart kids be educated to?

Anonymous said...

Wondering how DeKalb Online Academy is Friends and Family?

Anonymous said...

For the record, AP classes are not capped. Gifted classes are. So Dekalb's students are sometimes disadvantaged by taking overcrowded(as many as 35 students in class) AP classes when their private school and joint enrollment peers are taking these same courses in a smaller classroom environment, or their gifted peers choose the smaller, capped class of 25.

So much for Dekalb's commitment to "rigorous" course offerings.

For those concerned about instruction for gifted or even academically advanced, please see yesterday's New York Times education blog. They discuss how "Differentiated instruction," something originally used for gifted students, now works against these very students. As two different studies prove and any gifted student or lucid teacher will tell you, differentiated instruction has hijacked the classroom so that the only students who might benefit are the lowest performing ones.

Anonymous said...

Dr. A and her police escort came to our school. She was there less than 10 minutes. 7 to be more exact Not feeling hopeful things will change

Anonymous said...

Spent about 15 mins. at ours. No real depth of conversation with principals, parents or staff. She's seeing the buildings but not taking time on the visits for much listening.

Anonymous said...

Atkinson has a police escort? Seriously?

Does Atkinson also have a driver? An entourage? A purse-holder?

Atkinson is a perfect fit for The Palace with delusions of grandeur and a royalty complex. Shades of CLew-less!

We are soooo screwed!

Anonymous said...

@4:33

Avondale Elementary Association worked for several years to support Avondale Elementary school with fundraising and encouraging young affluent Avondale families to send their kids to Avondale Elementary. There were at quite a few families that sent there four year olds to pre-k there and felt welcome and were intending to continue when the central office brought in a new principal who had been run off from some other schools by vocal parents. She proceeded to alienate AEA, and intimidated the teaching staff to the extent that there was about a 50% staff turnover her first year.

AEA wound up the advocate for the staff, tried to complain to the central office on a number of issues and hit the "this is a friend of Dr. Lewis and you are just a bunch of complaining Avondale racists" response. I don't believe this, first because the prior principal that they had such a good relationship with was also black, but also because a Black parent that had had his child there during the transition and then left Avondale Elementary for ICS confirmed it to me.

TMS's tier 1 draw area was the entirety of the districts that feed Avondale and Midway elementary and is expanded to include Knollwood with the new charter. Their actual student population is concentrated amount kids from the city of Avondale Estates. Is this natural just because the city has advertised it, and it was primarily city residents that organized and started it so they are the ones that knew about it in year 1.

Cerebration said...

Does anyone have similar issues with the collection of students at the Leadership Prep Academy? Why the scrutiny of the Museum School's enrollment? Is it unusual for a charter to serve an attendance zone? LPA seems pretty particular in their student selection, as does Arabia.

Anonymous said...

Can we keep all of the negative thoughts to ones self and give Dr. Atkinson a chance! Come on, how much time do you expect her to spend in a "tour of the schools". With so many schools & centers, she needs to get a view of the system as she begins to meet with all of the groups she is meeting with. Did you see her schedule on the web site. She will be meeting EVERY night with some group. I have never seen anything like this in DeKalb. I am hopeful and thankful for the efforts.

Anonymous said...

The Board cut the utility budget knowing the money was not sufficient to heat and cool the buildings. Jester should know this but then, there is so much that she doesn't know, I wonder why she ran for the Board. Each month, it seems as if she is in campaign mode trying to throw a brick at each BLACK MALE presenter. She really has a problem that i think she is unaware of or do I smell "Tea Party"?

Dunwoody Mom said...

The Board cut the utility budget knowing the money was not sufficient to heat and cool the buildings.

So, what you are saying is that Eugene Walker and his budget committee intentionally provided budget numbers they knew were not viable? Wow, what other budget numbers are also "made up"?

Anonymous said...

Cere--
Put another way: should a county-funded start-up charter PUBLIC school--ANY start-up charter, no matter the history of its' development--be allowed to give preferential admission to any particular group of students to the intentional exclusion of others?

Atlanta Media Guy said...

Anon 12:26, take your political jabs and take it to the AJC blog. Jester knows all about the budget, she is an actuary. She asks the question so the stakeholders know what's going on. Jester asked the question so it could get into the minutes of the meeting. I'm glad she asks the tough questions. Everyone's power bills have gone up over 30% since last year. I'm stunned that DCSS budget staff had no idea, all they had to do is READ a newspaper and the stuff that comes in the power bills to know rates were going up.

Why does Eugene Walker want to avoid the tough questions? With Dr. Walker, it's all about him, his friends and his wallet. Anon. for you to disparage another BOE member because she asks the tough questions is ridiculous!

Funny isn't it? A former BOE member gets asked a tough question by a TV reporter and that BOE member threatens the reporter. Jester asks a tough question and she is disparaged by a Walker ally.

Anon 12:26, why are you so sensitive about BOE members asking tough questions? Could it be that you are one of the folks that love the Friends and Family program and you just might be worried your gravy train is about to be derailed? I'm just asking......

Anonymous said...

@ Anonymous, 12:20 AM

Negative Thoughts?

If Atkinson is a savvy person -- and I have my doubts -- she is reading this blog.

This blog will give her a roadmap to what is wrong in DCSS and will give her clues regarding what she needs to look for and the questions to ask.

The very last thing that Atkinson should do is to walk blindly and trustingly into the den of vipers, thieves, thugs and worse that DCSS has become.

Perhaps you are one of the above or part of the Friends-and-Family gravy train? Otherwise, why would you want to keep Atkinson in the dark?

Anonymous said...

No number of wrongs ever make a right. If AES discouraged neighborhood families from attending, or if Leadership does not admit students from the entire county is no excuse for TNS not to be open to all students from the county. And if you are going to cherry pick the students whose families are more affluent and who are active in education have the grace not to say we do better without mentioning that that fortutious and unequal palying field. The equality I seek is the one derserves in one under law and an open door to educational opportunities.

Anonymous said...

So let's make sure I understand this, the Ron Clark Academy whom everyone swoons over as a premier model of education, gets to pick and choose their kids as well as kick them out as they see fit but yet when a charter school wants to do the same, it's heresy!

Go figure!

Anonymous said...

So you have an issue with people complaining about charter schools using public funds drawn from all taxpayers operating by the same rules a tuition-funded private school uses?

If there is such a thing as a Freudian slip in education, I think you just made one.

Anonymous said...

"axially". Did anyone else see that word? Wow. Did I also see a "Willy Pringle"? Is that any relation to Angela Pringle?

Anonymous said...

@anon 1226,
Did you not listen to Ms. Jester? She was saying that the budget isn't accurate. We always go over and she was pointing out how much over we really are. The budget is a joke and you can't "cut" the bills that GA Power is going to send you. So to do so in a budget is just lying to the public about the cost of operating schools. You are going to have to pay those bills and you will be way over budget when you do. That was her point. Isn't the chair of the budget committee Dr. Walker? Perhaps he's the one with the knowledge problem. Shouldn't he, with all his years of experience, know that a budget should reflect reality? She wasn't at odds with Marcus Turk. She was pointing out how we spend too much money on lawyers and our budget isn't based in reality.
Dr. Walker spoke out because her observations make him nervous.
Don't turn this into a racial thing. If that's all you have, you have already lost.

Bewildered said...

If the school system (or any school system in GA) wishes to save money on their power bills, why can't they change the school attendance calendar? Start after Labor Day, and end the school year around the 15th of June. Many schools "up north" subscribe to this type of school calendar.

Having been educated in the Midwest, I never understood why schools in the South start during the hottest month of the year!

If such a school calendar was implemented, they could save tremendous amounts of money on their August power bill--which I suspect is probably the highest bill of the year!

Anonymous said...

There is absolutely no reason to presume TMS "cherrypicks" students.

It is pretty much always the case that the folks that work hard to design and start a Charter will know about it and want to put their kids there. They were months into year one before the 1st grade was full, and they had a big "enrolling now" sign out for everyone who drives down covington Hwy to see.

And exactly how many parents are going to switch to a school that is barely surviving with the lawsuit going against them, are going to take a chance on it actually being there and switch into it between years one and two? Answer--only those dedicated souls that are already emotionally invested in it.

Next year it will have a track record, be likely to exist for a few years and in a building big enough for that they are unlikely to need to do a lottery due to lack of space. That is when the wider community is likely to see it as a viable option---and they are likely to see a wider mix of students.

Anonymous said...

http://crossroadsnews.com/view/full_story/15846830/article-New-school-superintendent-starts-building-leadership-team?instance=home_more_headlines_ministry

Crossroads write up on Atkinsons leadership

Anonymous said...

I agree with Bewildered, the school calendar needs to be changed. (Donna Edler is on the money with this one.)

Cerebration said...

Anon 12:26, Nancy Jester does ask questions of many of the presenters at board meetings. If you notice, a great many of those presenters are black males. So, chances are pretty high that if someone questions a presenter at a board meeting that that presenter will be a black male. So? It seems that you are the one acting with prejudice here, calling Nancy a tea partier. That is very out of order. All of the board members ask questions of the presenters at board meetings. Next week, why not take a tally of how many ask questions of whites and how many ask questions of black and what the questioners race is and what the question was... and then throw your report in the trash because it would be irrelevant.

Peggy Pusateri said...

I appreciate your interest in The Museum School, and I encourage you to learn more about this great school. As a longtime, active volunteer on the school’s communication committee, I would like to correct some of the misinformation that has surfaced.

After receiving more student applications than the number of available student slots, The Museum School has conducted a student lottery each of the past two years. The lottery selected students randomly from the applicant pool, which consisted of students from throughout the entire attendance district of the Avondale Elementary School and Midway Elementary School zones.

Our current attendance district, as defined by our one-year charter with the DeKalb County School System, consists of the entire Avondale Elementary School and Midway Elementary School zones, as they were drawn for the 2009-2010 school year.

The school is open to every K-4 student living within the attendance district, which includes a very diverse socio-economic group of neighborhoods in central DeKalb County. We are working hard to increase our student diversity to more closely mirror that of our attendance district, and we have made good progress toward that goal. In fact, 40% of our students are non-Caucasian, with the majority of those students identifying as African-American.

The Museum School always has encouraged applications from students district-wide and has worked to spread news of the school to communities throughout the attendance district. In addition, our lotteries have been conducted in accordance with state law and were observed and certified by the Georgia Charter Schools Association and the Georgia Charter Schools Commission.

In submitting our application for a five-year DCSS charter, The Museum School’s board of directors has voluntarily called for an even larger Tier 1 attendance district that encompasses the communities currently zoned for Knollwood Elementary, in addition to all neighborhoods in the current Avondale Elementary and Midway Elementary zones, as defined for the 2011-2012 school year. The Tier 2 attendance district includes all of DeKalb County. And, contrary to an anonymous post, ours is not the only DeKalb County charter school with a tiered attendance district.

As part of its current and proposed charters with DCSS, The Museum School is taking aggressive measures to recruit students from throughout the entire attendance zone. These measures include targeting preschools and neighborhood associations throughout our attendance district, posting news about the school and its admission process on public bulletin boards, notifying media outlets of school events and admission deadlines, and conducting off-campus parent information meetings throughout DeKalb County.

The Museum School fully expects its student population to become more diverse as word about the school and its success spreads. We welcome increased diversity because we know it makes our school stronger. If you have questions about The Museum School, please feel free to send us an email at info@themuseumschool.org or call us at (404) 292-9760.

Open+Transparent said...

More freaking administrative bloat, and another slap in the face of the average teacher. Over a half million in new admin salaries??? WTH? Not a great start, Atkinson.


"On Sept. 21, the School Board voted unanimously to approve four senior-level appointments ­recommended by Dr. Cheryl Atkinson.
The newcomers are Kathleen S. Howe, deputy superintendent of curriculum and instruction; Kendra D. March, deputy superintendent of school leadership and operational support; Gary L. Brantley, chief information officer; and Walter Woods, executive director of communications.
Atkinson thanked the board for its vote of confidence in bringing new talent and creative approaches to the district.
“With these new senior-level additions, we will begin to make immediate improvements in the quality of instruction, technology and communications in our school system,” Atkinson said.
Brantley, Howe and March will earn a salary of $159,885.60 each. Woods’ salary was not immediately available."

Open+Transparent said...

One more time for effect:

Brantley, Howe and March will earn a salary of $159,885.60 each.

Anonymous said...

Speaking of Friends & Family- is Nancy Jester a relative or in-law of Sonny Jester who ran for the Board and grossly defeated? I guess Freiend & Family extend beyond Francis Edwards and her son-in-law. I wonder if the new strick attendance lines apply to Jester"s children who are definately out of her home address attendance zone? "Just asking a question?"

Anonymous said...

@Anon 11:50

That question has been asked before on this blog. Do a search before asking something dumb.

No, there is no relation. Nice try.

"Just answering"

Anonymous said...

Nancy is not related to Sonny Jester. She also has moved to Dunwoody and enrolled her children in their home school.

Cerebration said...

In addition, Nancy's children used to attend Hawthorne ES with many of their neighbors, which is under-enrolled, using the legal transfer method provided by the state legislation. (HB20 I think it's called).

Anonymous said...

HB251

I just don't understand the Jester hate. If you're going to hate, why not direct it at people who have been on the board for years AND years and have watched the schools in their district drastically decline before their very eyes?

Anonymous said...

This is all from the TMS website, as of today. DCSW readers can form their own opinions about inclusivity:

"The Museum School of Avondale Estates is open to all students in kindergarten through third grade who live within the attendance zone, subject to availability. The zone includes the Avondale Elementary and Midway Elementary school districts, as defined for the 2009-2010 school year. To view eligible street addresses and maps of the attendance zone, see the links below."

"The museum school ...
•Is public, chartered by the DeKalb County Board of Education and open to all students in the attendance zone, based on available space."

Atlanta Media Guy said...

The questions that Dr. Atkinson needs to answer. With 4 new upper level staff, what is going to be done to Beasley, Moseley, Thompson, Mitchell-Mayfield, Ramsey, Clark and Tucker? Looks to me there is some duplication going on with the upper level staff at the Palace. Dr. Atkinson, if you read the notes from the numerous charettes held last year, you would find that the majority of parents are concerned with the administrative BLOAT at the Palace. You have put US on the hook for a lot of salary dollars with folks that have similar titles to the folks in place. It would go a long way if you could give US stakeholders some idea what your plans are for cutting the bloat. Will you ask the BOE to support a brand new forensic audit of all divsions of DCSS as well as every dime spent on the previous SPLOSTS? I need some assurances on the SPLOST spending before I can commit to another one. There is too much money and too many people in high places that can take advantage.

Dr. Atkinson, it's past time to fundamentally transform the way DCSS operates and educates our kids! Please be the agent of change so many of us are hoping for!

Anonymous said...

I know this comes out of the clear blue, and I hope someone important is reading, but teachers now have no idea what their salary is. After work days have been "restored" and then "calendar reduction" (furlough) days have been taken, we're left with a salary that has no relation to the pay scale published by DCSS.

And then, some people have had upward adjustments of their salary because they are not being paid the "state minimum." Does this mean, not only were we not getting a county supplement, we were not even being paid what the state requires us to be paid?

Sounds like teachers are being ripped off, and we don't know how, by how much, and from what. Is this the way the county is paying its legal and astronomical power bills?

We're screwed.

We're screwed

Anonymous said...

You are screwed. Yes.you are.

We do, however, need two supers with super! salaries, and at least five deputy super positions that require double personnel because their jobs supervising you are so much more necessary and apparently difficult than what you are facing in front of ever larger classes with less prepared, poorer, and stressed out kids (and fewer instructional days with benchmarks and learning style assessments but higher expectations for you to meet).

Yes. You.are.screwed. As a parent, I am sickened, and so sorry. For what it's worth, I and my children value you. But I do not believe for a minute that the BOE or system administrators, of which there are Many, do. And yes, you are being taken advantage of and there is no end in site with atkinson'S approach to date.

Anonymous said...

Nancy Jester just does not do her homework! Her questions are stupid to the public who have followed Board actions for years and have a historic prespective. So she moved to Dunwoody huh, maybe now we have our new Austin school, although she VOTED against SPLOST IV.

Anonymous said...

Media Guy, I hope you share your concerns with Dr. Atkinson as I am sure she does not have the time nor desire to read blogs of any kind like we do. You make some great points. I am sure changes will be made after contracts expire with many top administrators. Yet, if she is going to save this sinking ship, she needs folk who she trust and know of their abilities. She can't wait a year to start making instructional improvements and that is her first priority. We didn't get here overnight. It started with Hallford was being corrected by Brown before he was "Bought Out" and then Dr.Lewis went ito full speed acceleration on blotting central office for loyalty and other reasons.Dr. Atkinson is going to need outside help to see the picture without the cobwebs. I will give her a year before I begin to pass year before before I begin to judge her. This system will not be fixed in a year but if we all work together we should begin to see real progress. We deinately need it.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, I meant "definately". Didn't realize that my"f: key was stuck.

Anonymous said...

@anon 1132
There you go again. I don't think you do your homework. Jester does her homework and asks the questions we all wish the rest of the board would ask too. I think you protest so much because she's on target and it makes you nervous. How embarrassing for you now.

Cerebration said...

If you have an issue with Nancy Jester's questions, please tell us specifically what it is you'd like her to ask differently or what it is that you perceive that she doesn't know. Better yet, tell her yourself, she's pretty accessible.

We'd all like to have a discussion about the specific issues you'd like the board to know about. Just post in the comments what you, in your years of interaction with the school system, see as what needs to be addressed. In fact, add your suggestions (constructive ones please!) to the suggestion box post. Just click on the picture of the suggestion box on the right side panel of the home page. Or put "suggestion box" in the blog's search bar.

Atlanta Media Guy said...

Anon 11:32 said...
"Her questions are stupid to the public who have followed Board actions for years and have a historic prespective."

I think you have hit the nail on the head of what ails DCSS. It's time we hear more questions like Jester's. I have a 12 year perspective of DCSS and I think the right questions have NOT been asked especially lately. If the proper questions had been asked, in the light of day, would we have given a former Super a new contract just weeks before he is indicted on RICO charges? The questions might seem silly to you, but some on this BOE have been acting pretty silly for years, when it comes to their fiduciary responsibility to EVERY DeKalb taxpayer.

concerned said...

Why did my commnet get erased? This was my person experience. She did not return my calls last year. And did not respond to questions as to why she altered the attendance zones that the superintendant and Dan Drake proposed. I really do not understand why she is protected by this blog. Is it not a bit wierd that the area of town she put so much effort into sculping is where she then moved to?
I am sure she is good with asking tough questions, but please do not say she is accessable or appropriately represents her constituents.

Cerebration said...

I only remove comments when I feel they cross the line as far as tone and insult. If you have real, specific examples of issues you have with anyone at all, then by all means, state them. But simple name-calling won't be tolerated.

Open+Transparent said...

I guess this is part of the deal Fernbank struck with Gene Walker to support his last election. If you think the Fernbank PTA gives a darn about any other school, I've got a bridge to sell you. We'd all be better off if Fernbank was its own seperate school system!



From Amy Power via DHHS and local residents, info on SPLOST vote November 8 and its impact on local schools and an update on a proposal to lease Medlock School to the International Community School, a charter school:
SPLOST

On November 8, voters in DeKalb County will be asked to continue the SPLOST for schools, the one-penny sales tax dedicated to much-needed capital and technology improvements to classrooms, schoolhouses, and sports facilities across the county. This is not a new tax. The school SPLOST has been in place for fifteen years, and vote of 'yes' to SPLOST will keep DeKalb's sales tax at the same 7% rate it has been since 1997. More than 30% of funds collected by SPLOST are paid by visitors from outside of DeKalb County.

What will a 'YES' vote and passage mean for Fernbank and our neighborhoods?

After a county-wide facilities assessment conducted by an outside engineering firm, the school system determined that the condition of Fernbank's current facility ranked among the lowest in the county. As a result, the school system has included a new building for Fernbank and seven other schools among its specific list of projects, a list which cannot by altered by the county. If voters approve SPLOST in November, state law requires that these projects occur.



If SPLOST passes, Fernbank will receive a new, state-of-the-art building that will accommodate all its students, faculty, and staff, without any trailers. The new building will meet today's educational suitability standards, make the most of sustainable engineering and technology, and serve not just our children, but many generations to follow. During construction, Fernbank's students and teachers will use the currently empty Avondale Middle School (just north of the intersection of E. College & N. Clarendon near downtown Avondale Estates -- a nice building that's about 10 years old, with plenty of parking and even two tennis courts) for 2-3 semesters while the new schoolhouse is built. The new building could be ready for students and teachers as early as January 2014. Because the new building will accommodate more children, we can expect Fernbank's attendance zone to enlarge, and include more homes not currently zoned to Fernbank.



What happens if the school SPLOST does not pass?



If SPLOST does not pass, a portion of the homestead exemption for DeKalb homeowners will automatically disappear, thereby raising property taxes for 2012 and beyond. Revenue from elimination of that portion of the homestead exemption will be insufficient to fund the specific SPLOST project list. Rather, that much smaller revenue will be used to cover bonds already issued for a new building for Chamblee High School. Finally, without funding for a new Fernbank facility, school system officials have advised that Fernbank will be placed on the next redistricting agenda.

oming Meetings on the School and SPLOST



Both the Fernbank PTA and the Emory LaVista Parent Council will have presentations on the school SPLOST at their October meetings. The PTA meeting is October 18 at 6:00 p.m., and the ELPC meeting is October 19 at 9:00 a.m., both in the Fernbank cafeteria. If you have any additional questions, you can contact Fernbank parents serving on the county-wide SPLOST advocacy committee: Marshall Orson, marshall.orson@devonwoodmedia.com; Amy Power, amypower@bellsouth.net; Susan-Anne MacKenna, sasmack@gmail.com; and Jeff DiSantis, jeff@disantis.com.

Cerebration said...

A "no" vote will only raise taxes about $200 on a $200,00 home. For most of us, this would be a wash or at least negligible compared to the additional 1% sales tax. What they don't tell you is that this vote is NOT now or never. We can revisit SPLOST next year - after the board and the new leadership has presented a plan that is educationally-driven and includes a system of checks and balances so that we don't end up with anyone with criminal charges next time.

Anonymous said...

Real question.....can someone please explain why the new super travels with security detail......

Anonymous said...

"As a result, the school system has included a new building for Fernbank and seven other schools among its specific list of projects, a list which cannot by altered by the county. If voters approve SPLOST in November, state law requires that these projects occur."

Ha Ha Ha. The sound of me laughing hysterically. That's a good one - the one about state law requiring these projects to occur. Does the author of this live in a parallel universe? In recent years, the SPLOST project list has been a moving target, with promised projects not occurring and other projects appearing from no where. The Palace and new Tucker High School come to mind. Was old Tucker High a pit? It was. But Clew just decided to put it on the SPLOST list, when it was recommended for renovation. Shifted everything around and made it happen. And Pat Pope helped.

What really, completely, utterly, hacks me off, is that Avondale Middle sits empty while they propose building a new Fernbank. Here's an idea, Dr. A: move the Fernbank students to this "nice building that's about 10 years old, with plenty of parking and even two tennis courts)" permanently. The very idea that we are talking about new construction when perfectly good buildings sit empty is ludicrous. No question a new Fernbank represents a quid pro quo. Thanks, Gene Walker. And "concerned" thinks Nancy Jester is the problem?

Anonymous said...

My questions are:

1. Are these projects really necessary given the current financials of the district? Would it be better for us to get our financial house in order before spending any more money that we don't have, especially after a tax hike this year.

2. How much more can they legally raise taxes? How much of it do we actually get to keep?

Frankly, I feel that I am paying more than enough for the inferior education being given to the children of the county. More money, new buildings, higher salaries aren't going to improve the product, especially if the current board and people at the palace remain the same or like this week more, more are added.

I am not opposed to paying higher taxes, but already feel that I am paying for a Cadillac and getting a used Yugo. When is enough enough?

Cerebration said...

Actually, I got some clarity on what will happen to property taxes if SPLOST is not approved:

With the removal of the extra $2500 in homestead exemption that we receive in DeKalb because we have an active e-SPLOST, each home’s property tax will increase by a set $57 and some change.

This will not vary due to housing value; it will be the same for every house. It is the tax from the portion of the $2500 in value of your house that you will now have to pay the school taxes rather than being exempt from (2500 X 22.98 mils).

So, homeowners will pay a flat $57 a year more but save 1% on their sales tax on every purchase throughout the year.

Anonymous said...

If SPLOST succeeds, we are stuck with spending money for buses - which are not a capitol expenditure and should come out of DCSS operating expenses; we are stuck with giving Coralwood an additional $10 million for less than 200 children under the age of 6 (the BOE is charged with educating children k-12, not 3 and 4 yr olds) when the Buford Hwy corridor is ignored. We are stuck with broad categories like ADA and technology...and you can bet they won't be spent on the most needy areas! The list shows the continued lack of equity and fiscal responsibility. A "NO" vote this year might get their attention so they have to bring us back an educationally sound, fiscally responsible plan the next time around!

Cerebration said...

There were millions in SPLOST 3 for buses -- what happened? I thought we got a whole bunch of new buses already. Do we need more?

Cerebration said...

Below is the text of the brochure encouraging us to vote for SPLOST 3 before that vote --

WHAT IS SPLOST ?
Referendum: March 20, 2007
This Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax (SPLOST) is an opportunity for voters in DeKalb County to continue the onecent sales tax for school improvements. This sales tax extension is limited to 60 months or until an established cap of $645 million has been reached, whichever comes first.

If the continuation of the one cent sales tax is approved by the voters on March 20, 2007, improvements for our kids are funded by everyone who buys goods in the county, regardless of where they live.

With the extension of SPLOST ...

• Over 2,646,000 Square Feet of New Roofing
• Another 201,800 Square Feet of Roofing Repairs
• 2,535,000 Square Feet of School Renovations
• 185 New Technologically Advanced High
School Classrooms
• 183 New Innovative Elementary School Classrooms
• Over 1,206,000 Square Feet of durable Asphalt
Paving
• 7,000 Square Feet of safe Concrete Walkways
• 6 New State of the Art High School Teaching
Auditoriums
• 22 New Advanced Career Technology Instructional
Centers
• 25 HVAC Replacement, Repair, and Upgrade
Projects

OVERVIEW

In order to maintain a healthy and safe learning environment for the students of the DeKalb County School System, a Capital Improvement Plan [CIP] has been developed and approved by the Board of Education.

The CIP outlines the most pressing facility needs.
The CIP is aligned with Board /Superintendent Goals, the Facility Needs Assessment and the Demographic Study. The plan is educationally sound, philosophically based, and fiscally responsible. To that end, the focus of the plan directly addresses the High Schools That Work principles and the commitment to learning environments that are healthy and safe.

The Capital Improvement Plan will touch every facility, school and center in the DeKalb County School System.

The main areas of focus for the CIP are as follows:
�� Retirement of existing COPs* financial debt
�� Completion of deferred SPLOST II work
�� Major Roofing, HVAC, Code & Life Safety Improvements
�� High School Improvements
�� Career Technology, Fine Arts, & Classroom Additions
�� Renovations of Classrooms from floor to ceiling
�� Technology Upgrades to ALL Facilities
�� Transportation Additions of New Buses to replace
Aging Vehicles
*Certificate of Participation

Facilities Affected

�� Technology Improvements & Upgrades will be completed at ALL Schools & Centers
�� Other Specified Projects Elementary Schools
Allgood, Austin, Avondale, Bob Mathis, Briar Vista, Cedar Grove, Chapel Hill, Chesnut, Clifton, Evansdale, Fairington, Fernbank, Flat Shoals, Forrest Hills, Glen Haven, Hambrick, Hawthorne, Henderson Mill, Hightower, Hooper Alexander, Huntley Hills, Idlewood, Indian Creek, Kingsley, Knollwood,
Laurel Ridge, Livsey, McLendon, Meadowview, Midvale, Midway, E.L. Miller, Montgomery, Murphey Candler, Nancy Creek, Oak View, Oakcliff, Pleasantdale, Rainbow, Rockbridge, Sagamore Hills, Sky Haven, Snapfinger, Stone Mill, Stone Mountain, Terry Mill, Vanderlyn, Wadsworth, Woodward
Middle Schools Champion Theme, Henderson, McNair, Miller Grove, Salem, Sequoyah, Stephenson

High Schools
Chamblee, Clarkston, Columbia, Cross Keys, Tech-North, Tech-South, DECA, Druid Hills, DSA, Lakeside, McNair, Open Campus, Redan, Stone Mountain, SW DeKalb, Towers Centers Clarkston, Coralwood Diagnostic, Transition Academy, Doraville Driver Ed, Fernbank Science, Freeman Administrative Building, Heritage, Sam Moss, Warren Tech

�� Large Model Additions
Dunwoody, Lithonia, M.L. King Jr., Miller Grove

�� New Schools
COPs Retirement: Evans Mill ES, Dunwoody/Chamblee Area ES, Rock Chapel Area ES
Tucker High School

Cerebration said...

And finally, the famous 'PRIORITY LIST' - from SPLOST 3

Capital Improvement Plan
Approved by the B.O.E. on 11/17/06

COPs Financial Debt Retirement $ 66,000,000

1. Deferred SPLOST II Work $ 25,000,000
2. Cross Keys Renovation with Career Tech
$ 16,927,348
3. Tucker Replacement High School $ 66,330,016
4. Roofing $ 9,877,168
5. HVAC $ 17,168,224
6. ADA $ 4,730,336
7. Local School Priority Requests $ 2,656,419
8. Site Improvements $ 8,417,986
9. Facility Improvements - Druid Hills High School
$ 9,739,800
10. DSA Relocation $ 10,000,000
11. Relocation of Open Campus, Jim Cherry Center & DECA to Mountain Industrial Center $ 29,836,296
12. Buses $ 4,000,000
13. Land/Property Acquisition $ 3,000,000
14. Career Tech/Classroom/Fine Arts Additions
$ 63,292,805
15. Technology – Refresh Cycle for All Schools & Centers $ 19,418,581
16. Lithonia High School Addition $ 11,447,624
17. MLK Jr. High School Addition $ 10,178,779
18. Miller Grove High School Addition $ 5,874,487
19. Dunwoody High School Addition $ 4,819,395
20. Site Improvements $ 5,000,000
21. Facility Improvements – Clarkston High School $ 4,000,000
22. HVAC $ 10,716,737
23. Roofing $ 10,681,471
24. ADA $ 2,052,729
25. Local School Priority Requests $ 2,500,000
26. Buses $ 4,000,000
27. Technology – Media Center Upgrades
$ 10,000,000
28. Buses $ 4,000,000
29. HVAC $ 17,408,662
30. Roofing $ 7,125,137

CIP TOTAL $466,000,000

Cerebration said...

For more on how SPLOST 3 was spent, read this post:

SPLOST 3 projects vs enrollments, capacity and racial make up at DeKalb High Schools

M G said...

Anon 10:58, Coralwood serves students with disabilities. All school systems are required by the Federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) to educate students with disabilities from age 3 to 21. It's not K-12 for these students.

Anonymous said...

Coralwood serves less than 200 students and less than half are special needs - the rest are there by lottery. They received a very nice renovation in SPLOST II. Others are still waiting for the basics. If you check the Coralwood Foundation plans, they have been working since 2009 with the Lewis gang to get more money and new building. Until we can provide the basics for all, we have no business approving projects like this. Coralwood is a great school but we are neglecting other children with great needs. The amount spent at Coralwood is disproportionate AND we do not receive funding for the students age 3-4 for FTE purposes!

Anonymous said...

It isn't that the questions aren't asked -- it is that they aren't answered....