DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. (MyFOX ATLANTA) - DeKalb County plans to close four elementary schools by the end of the year and even more schools could be closed soon, because of a $115 million budget shortfall. Hundreds of parents have protested of the plans, but educators say they simply have no choice.
Thomas Bowen, the chair of the DeKalb County School Board and Ernest Brown, a DeKalb County parent and member of the Citizens Planning Task force sat down Friday to discuss the issue.
Four schools remain on the chopping block and those are Kelley Lake Elementary School, Knollwood Elementary School, Sky Haven Elementary School and Glen Haven Elementary Schools.
Two other schools have been suggested as alternate schools for closure. Those are Gresham Park Elementary in lieu of Sky Haven and Peachtree Elementary [we assume they mean Peachcrest] in lieu of Glen Haven.
Highlights from the interview -
Schools currently slated to consolidate:
Kelley Lake ES, Knollwood ES, Sky Haven ES and Glen Haven ESBowen says we have 11,000 empty seats.
Spending more on low-enrollment schools takes away from students in other schools.
Brown, a member of the task force, supports closures.
Parents need to look at big picture - task force made data-driven decisions.
This is a natural progression of population shifts.
Bowen - only $2 million of $115 million reduction, but most polarizing.
Education comes from the people - not the building.
Parents need to help the board formalize plans.
Public hearings will be held at 6 PM at the following locations:
Tuesday, May 11 - Miller Grove High School, Lithonia
Thursday, May 13 - Lithonia HIgh School
The final vote by the board will be May 14.