Wednesday, December 28, 2011

New Birth Christian Academy to Close

According to Fox 5 Atlanta, New Birth Christian Academy is to close. This is a big concern to us at DeKalb School Watch, as we have predicted this from the day the school board approved a public charter to be housed at New Birth, with a signed rental agreement of $10,000 a month to use the facilities. At the same time, New Birth already had a private Christian Academy housed in the same building, blurring the line for co-mingling of public funds. The stated reason is massive debt and declining enrollment, causing us to wonder if students have simply been transferring to the DeKalb Leadership Academy - in the same facility - at no charge.

Click here to read more on the subject at Fox 5.

Click here to read an article on the subject at the AJC.


Anonymous said...

The money went into the lawsuits and up-coming divorce. What is going to happen is that; soror calloway will not come to New Birth Christian Academy aid. More than likey, the elite already transferred their kids into soror cALLOWAY'S elite school.
Check this out, most of her sorors were on staff at the Academy , plus are currently hired in her school.
Now, remember, hundreds of young and old females are joining calloways, white, and berry's organization to become over night assistant principals and principals. Oh, boy, it works too! Roll call in the county will show the majority of female assistant, and principals belong to calloway, white, and berry's organization. What a coincidence for the south end of the county.
DCSS will come to the Bishop's aid in this closing. Nothing has changed with the family and friends connections throughout the county. Debbie White saw the writing on the wall and left before Dr. Atkinson called her number. (Good Choice, Debbie)
Once, Bishop and Pope go to trial, a lot of female and assistant principals are going to be reveal as to how they received their jobs. 2012 Prediction!

Anonymous said...

The radio news reportedly interviewed a parent of a student at New Birth.
"They gave us NO forwarning of the school closing. The just sent a LETTER home during the holiday break to inform us that the school would not be open in 2012."

A K-12 Christian academy that closes during the Christmas holidays!

This is the most morally upsetting thing a Christian could do!

The church doesn't have the funds to run the school for another 5 months?

They chose to displace ALL of the children during the Christmas Holidays?

Why aren't we hearing the CRIES of the unjust?

Why isn't anyone complaining about how they are treating the poor students of the New Birth Academy?

DCSS is still paying $10,000 a month in RENT to New Birth to house a "Frankie Callaway" charter school there?

Why does DCSS choose to align themselves with such people?

It is WRONG!
DCSS should disassociate itself from New Birth yesterday!
Meaning, it should have been done LONG AGO!

Good bye and good riddance to NBMC!

Anonymous said...

Yes! Maybe now that Bishop is trying to come to terms with his problems, DCSS will terminate ties with the Bishop once and for all.
Where is the famous Ronald Ramsey in all of this? Bishop is his frat brother, right?
Oh, we forgot, he's still out there bothering and displacing teachers at the voices of his administrators who are intimidated by staff they cannot control. You can believe these people are calling on calloway and other so called fake elites of the DCSS.

Anonymous said...

Ask Richard Belcher to investigate or the I-Team where the money is or went. To answer your question about students transferring from New Birth to Calloway's school. The answer would be YES. If calloway broke rules in DCSS and nothing was done about her poor leadership, then why would she change her style of leadership now. Family and Friends connections are still going on in the county and at New Birth. Let's do a Roll Call! Richard Belcher, DCSS needs you for this one.

Anonymous said...

Richard Belcher is in DCSS's pocket.

Anonymous said...

Isn't the charter bound by the same rules as other charters, i.e., required to admit by lottery and from an existing waiting list? it seems fishy that New Birth kids would be allowed to "jump the line"

Fishy, not unexpected.

Anonymous said...

This has nothing to do with LPA, so leave the school out of it. Stop speculating and trying to make a conspiracy where there is none. I have a child at that school who started there last year ,have no affiliation with Newbirth, just sent in my childs information. Several of the children in the school I know personally from his previous private school not Newbirth ACademy, recreational activities, Sports or just in my neighborhood. I told several about the school myself. The classes are FULL and the school has a waiting list. In their first year the school passed AYP. The teachers parents and students happen to love the school. We could care less about the location. The School benefits more from The church than the church from the School, The kids have a wonderful safe environment with a indoor gym ,library, meeting facilities, playground. I doubt the several caucasian students and teachers are members at Newbirth, so please if you dont know what you are talking about then its best not to say anything . But then again you know what they say about people who assume. And by the way so what if a parent transferred their child from Newbirth to LPA? Arent they tax payers and have public education as an option? Is that any of your business? Some of you so called concerned citizens and educators really need to take a good hard look in the mirror because your motives are questionable. Ans by the way My child spends countless hours studying and prides himself on good grades that he earns. The first B he ever got was at LPA because his teachers have very high expectations from all the kids!!!.

Anonymous said...

from the Champion.

Officials promise sweeping changes in DeKalb Schools
Written By: Daniel Beauregard12/28/11

School officials said that Superintendent Cheryl Atkinson has promised significant personnel changes at every level of the school system at the beginning of 2012.

Atkinson is nearly finished with her 90-day entry plan and school spokesman Walter Woods said the personnel changes, which would occur throughout January, would bring the plan to a close.

“We are expecting significant changes throughout the district at all levels, particularly the higher central office levels,” Woods said.

Woods said the reason for the personnel changes is to ensure the system has the right staff in place to carry out the mission both the superintendent and the board are committed to, which is to improve student success throughout all areas of the school system.

“We have pockets of excellence; we need a system-wide school system of excellence and to do that we need the right people in place,” Woods said.

Recently, the system began a complete personnel audit, which is slated to be finished Jan. 13. Woods said some of the personnel changes would come as a result of the audit. He said the changes include principals.

“I think that we have to make sure that there’s a leader in every building,” he said. “This has come up with every parent forum we’ve had and this has come up with every employee forum we’ve had over the past couple of weeks and the superintendent can tell you there’s going to be major changes.”

Woods would not be specific about any changes in particular but said they would be drastic.

Anonymous said...

Anon 5:36 / LPA parent

I think the concern on this blog and particular church subject is NOT with the students. We support All of the children of DeKalb and not just our own. I think we all want the very best education for ALL of the kids.

Now back to the point, the church and DCSS does NOT need to be affiliated in ANY and ALL ways.

(Bishop) Eddie's world is crumbling down around him and there are thousands of people trying to distance themselves from him.

I think DCSS should do the same.

Anonymous said...

"Parents scramble to find new schools for former New Birth students"

Awwwwww! Too bad, so sad!

Hey, I've got an idea...Why don't you just send your kids to your neighborhood school!

Anonymous said...

I can sympathize with the plight of these parents. You don't mess with a parent when their child's education is concerned. Especially if your child is in a private/charter school when they go there cuz that is the type of education you desire for your child. There is a big difference in the kids who attend a school because their parents want them there and those who attend a school simply because that is the neighborhood school. The families are way more invested in the first and with the exception of the the 10% who help at every thing, completely apathetic at the other. Welcome back to public education. If you stay involved you will still make a difference for your child and now most likely a difference in someone else child's life. God knows he/she probably needs it.

Anonymous said...

"Woods would not be specific about any changes in particular but said they would be drastic."

A terrible PR statement by Dekalb's PR guy. We're paying him for this sensationalist drivel!

Not that the changes would be beneficial, but that they would be drastic. How are we supposed to read this? And knowing the obstructionist, inept Board we have, I have no hope that this will be drastic change for the good.

Coming from the mouth of DCSS, the word "drastic" has super negative connotations.

Anonymous said...

Urban Dictionary definition of

"Drastic Changes"

The replacing of all unqualified, underqualified, overpaid friends, family, sorority and fraternity members with experienced, qualified, vetted professional educators and administrators.

One can hope!

Anonymous said...

The lawyers are already lining up to sue and get more of our taxpayer dollars, if drastic changes are made without proper documentation and support from the community being served. If it ain't broke , don't fix it.All these new folk ought to stop and tread some water before they discover themselves sinking fast in rush to action judgments. We need change but we need systemic, thoughtful and documented change based on the established evaluation process. All we are asking for is transparency and aplan for student achievement. This is going to take some time.

Anonymous said...

Broken would be an improvement for DCSS! What we have here is a total system failure! FUBAR

Our sympathies to the qualfied, dedicated teachers who are laboring day to day in the quicksand.

No sympathy to the employees who falsely wear or claim the title of teacher. You and we know who you are! We've met you, dealt with you and left your rooms shaking our heads wondering how in the H*LL
did you get this job and worse yet, why you were allowed to keep it.

No sympathy to those employeers who have climbed the ladder with the help of worthless online degrees and parlayed their social connections to plum assignments.

The curtain will soon be pulled back, the smoke will clear and the day of reckoning will be here.

Perhaps this is the event the Mayan
calendar predicted! : )

Anonymous said...

From the AJC:

New Birth academy closes; hundreds of students looking for new school

Anonymous said...

Let's hope that Dr. Atkinson will make the changes with the principals. They are members of the family, frat, and sorority plan and create confusion because grown ups will not bow down to them especially the female soror principals who were placed in these positions by Calloway, Berry, White, and CLEW.
Teachers, beware, you are going to be black balled for speaking up at the fireside chat. Principals sent in their sorors, spies, and others who are dying for administrative roles to share comments that were voiced. Princpals stick together and call each other with lies about teachers who they donot like.

Anonymous said...

From the AJC:

New Birth academy closes; hundreds of students looking for new school

Anonymous said...

I thought a complete audit would include asking every employee about their resposibilities and duties. As an employee of DCSS,I haven't been asked to provide anything. If every employee and every job isn't a part of the audit process, then it won't be complete will it?

Cerebration said...

From the AJC =

"Tuition at the school ranged from $5,253 for New Birth members to $6,198 for non-members with more than $1,000 in non-refundable fees, according to the academy's website.

Donald said staff will help students find a new school to attend. Students in grades K-5 may not have to travel far, however, as the DeKalb County School System leases space from New Birth for a charter school, Leadership Preparatory Academy.

The district pays more than $10,000 per month in rent to New Birth covering maintenance, security and insurance costs, according to a lease."

So Key Point Here: The tuition for these students is almost identical to what the Leadership Charter is paid by the state per student. Could this be a simple transfer of fiscal responsibility?

Anonymous said...

What you people dont know is that Newbirth gave Scholarships to many of the kids attending the school from donations and sponsorships. So out of the 212 students about 50 were on scholarship transferring from the wonderful public schools in the area. With the membership dropping thus donations to the school dropping and paying students leaving because of all the scandal, The school had to go under. It really has nothing to do with the Charter School. Its too bad for the children that this had to happen in the middle of te school year. Its sad to ead comments of people celebrating because kids are being displaced in the middle of the school year. That is just pathetic and sounds like jealousy !

Anonymous said...

Why 'O Why are we (Dekalb Taxpayers) paying $10,000 per month for rent for a school housed in the New Birth Church when there are vacant school properties sitting idle. This is outrageous!! or am I not understanding the situation? We absolutely can not continue nonsense like this.

Cerebration said...

FWIW, I don't think DCSS pays this rent directly. I "think" that the way it works is that the charter school earns a budget (an FTE amount from the state, plus federal money that applies according to student needs). The charter school then decides how to spend their budget. I do "think" (again, I'm not sure, so if someone is sure, please chime in) that the public school system has to offer a vacant building to a charter if requested. Thus, DCSS finally offered the International Community School (a charter) the recently closed Medlock Elementary. IF the Leadership Academy chooses to spend over $100,000 on rent to New Birth, that is their budgetary decision, not the school board's.

Cerebration said...

All that said, you are absolutely correct at your basic point, Anon. These are tax dollars, whether local, state or federal and one has to wonder if it's prudent to spend it on rent at a religious establishment. This happens all the time though - we pay a lot of rent to churches for charter schools. We've said for quite a while that this is a slippery slope - and offers a big risk for "co-mingling" of public funds with a religious institution's funds.

Anonymous said...

Wait... so tax dollars ended up in the pocket of pedo-man and nobody is upset about that? WOW.

Anonymous said...

And sadder yet...take the tithing percentage of all of the DCSS "F and F" employees who are paid with our tax money and are members of NBBC!

For argument's sake, let's set the tithe percentage at 5%

Set the average DCSS "F and F"
employee wage at $100,000

Conservatively set the DCSS/NBBC
members to 50 and let's see how much the taxpayers have also chipped in via the collection plate:

5% x 100,000 = $5000 per DCSS church member

$5000 x 50 = A cool quarter of a million dollars per year!

Shazam! There is, or at least there was a money well until the recent scandal(s). Will be interesting for Bishop Long to see who his real friends are!

Good luck with that!

Anonymous said...

Maybe the School board needs to look at the way the charter school budgets their money and take some lessons. Considering the charter school receives 75% of what a traditional public school does per child,and has less students than a traditional public school. Charters have no school buses but can still pay rent,have computers in the classrooms, Have the newest technology available to the teachers in the classrooms , Has a gifted teacher on site full time, has paras in the classrooms, Have a fulltime Phys ed teacher, music teacher, art teacher and offer tons of extracurriculars including FREE tutoring to ALL the students who are interested. I dont think you concerned citizens have to worry about where your tax dollars are going. Its very obvious that its going to the STUDENTS. And besides I think the parents tax dollars are covering the school, since the majority are two parent professionals who pay quite a bit of taxes in Dekalb County. But if you are so concerned how about advocating for charters to receive the same amount of money per student and bus service or go over and help out by volunteering your time and money. Thats what Parents of kids in charter schools do everyday to make up the difference in the budget. Until then You really need to stop whining.

Anonymous said...

Looks like things are heating up!!

Anonymous said...

One more thing since you guys are so well versed on where the school should be housed how about YOU suggesting a school building that is available for the school to use and all the particulars about getting the school transferred there?? Make sure the expenses are less than the current which includes utilities, maintenance security, indoor gym, Library facilities playground and location central to the current students. I am sure the administrator an PTA would appreciate any suggestions on saving money so the Students can benefit. Instead of being a part of the problem how about being a part of the solution. Suggestions please?????

Anonymous said...

I think the tithing percent is at least 10% and the salaries have been drastically inflated over the past 5 years so the numbers are much higher than December 29, 2011 11:50 AM has indicated.

Anonymous said...

Anon 10:26 -

When DCSS closed Forest Hills Elementary, the International Community School (a charter) requested to lease the building, stating it would be less expensive than their current arrangement (leasing space from two churches). DCSS dragged its feet for several years, saying the Forest Hills building might be needed for something.

ICS was finally granted the lease of the Medlock Elementary building. ICS has stated that even with the money they will be spending to renovate, the lower lease and the ability to combine their schools will save them money. Because the school system charges a nominal leasing fee, the charter needs only to spend money on the expenses of running the school. This arrangement is usually cheaper.

DCSS has several unoccupied school buildings that are currently deteriorating because of disuse. It would seem to me that in the long run, keeping them occupied and maintained would save the district money, too.

Anonymous said...

Thats all well and good but here is some education for all you know it alls. To get a charter aproved you have to have a place, LOCATION SIGNED lease, title or deed in hand or on file with your application and since the school system does not readily want to give charters the empty buldings guess what, Churches are the next option. Almost every charter school starts out in a church , I wonder why???? HMMMM well its because the greedy School board does not want charters, They dont want to lose the money that the students will take from their budget so instead of making location a non issue by using the empty school buildings as you all are so quick to suggest, they come up with excuses. My advice to all the people who want to uproot the school with no options for location is contact your school board member and have them free up the Empty decaying buildings at a reasonable cost, so that LPA and the other charter schools who have been in churches long before LPA can find a cheaper alternative for rent!!!

Anonymous said...

I guess this is just part of the fallout from Bishop Eddie Sandusky leaving. Oops, excuse me, that's Bishop Eddie Long (not quite sure how I got the name Sandusky confused with Long.)

Anonymous said...

The system ought to be selling these charters those buildings, but like hoarders, the BoEd can't seem to let go.

The charters will struggle to raise renovation money because they are tenants not owners.

Anonymous said...

Anon 1:51 -

I believe I gave the wrong impression. I did not mean to imply that it was easy for charters to get a building from DCSS and they were at fault for not doing so. Rather, it is the foot-dragging and stonewalling of the school district that makes it so difficult. This despite the fact that districts are supposed to make those closed school buildings available for district-chartered schools as a matter of course (never could understand how DCSS got away with not doing this).

I know ICS wanted to use a closed DCSS school building in the first place, and ended up at the churches for the reasons you described. I do not blame the charter committees, rather I blame the DCSS "sit-up- here" group. Perhaps it works for them because it makes them look as if they are open-minded about approving charters while simultaneously making it extremely difficult to actually get one going...

Anonymous said...

Hey. I am one of those students and almost died when I got the letter. Honestly I will miss my school. I'm hurting and can't imagine that even after this you guys still can't give him a break. I grew up at nbca and can't imagine going any where else. Im not a little kid where as I don't know what's going on but I don't care about any law suit, all I care about is my school.

Anonymous said...

Quoted from a New Birth Academy Student in the blog....

"Hey. I am one of those students and almost died when I got the letter. Honestly I will miss my school. I'm hurting and can't imagine that even after this you guys still can't give him a break. I grew up at nbca and can't imagine going any where else. Im not a little kid where as I don't know what's going on but I don't care about any law suit, all I care about is my school."

This kind of thing concerns me. I am a DCSS high school teacher. I work with young men like Anthony Flagg and the others. I have young men that come into my classroom everyday. It pains me to think that Eddie Long did that or could do that to young men. I work with this an alternative setting, with young men who need mentors due to absent fathers. It sickens me that the DCSS community is not disgusted!

I care about students. It is gross to think that DCSS houses a school on property that is leased by a child molester. And to the student above...I am concerned that your parents would allow you to stay in harms way. You do know that you are in harms way don't you. If you didn't know the law does not allow child molesters to be around or near schools or churches. Eddie Long was not convicted but he is in fact a child molester. That is why his wife is divorcing him. She knows it. We all know it. Now back to the law. If someone is a sexual predator they cannot live near schools, daycares, or churches. They are on a registry. So let me make this plain. If Eddie Long had messed with those boys just one year earlier he would be on a sexual predator registry. He could not live or preach at that church...ok. But man's law does not escape moral right...he got by on a technicality. He is a child molester and if you were my child I would not let you attend a school that is affiliated with him or even a DCSS charter school on the property.

We cannot place our children in harms way. I ask how can you allow a sexual predator access to your children? How do you do that? I don't care if he is a bishop or the Pope!

Our law enforcement officers and members of DCSS that attend his church you might need to ask yourself what side of the law are your on? I am a teacher and I am outraged that the student demographic that I teach has been the target of Eddie Long's wrong.

And to the student who wrote that...Trust God! God is making the truth come to the light...and protecting his children...believe it. As they say "God takes care of babies and fools"

Peace, concerned teacher (I speak for the young ones)

Anonymous said...

To the poster chastising the student. Are you serious and is that the way you teach in your alternate setting by using your personal opinions. My god you sound extremely ignorant. If a law was broken then someone would be in jail and the case would not have been in civil court but criminal. DO you ven know the difference? Did he do it? I dont Know. AM I defending him ? Heck No Would I allow my child around him NO Way. It looks real bad but to chastise that student and quote the law incorrectly makes me wonder why you are teaching anyone and then to question the students parent You really have nerve. I would HATE for you to teach my child oh Wait YOU COULD NEVER teach my child. Peace that.!!

Cerebration said...

Truth be told, if you agree with the opinions above, you would not send a child to a Catholic school either - or plenty of public schools or youth groups or sports teams. Child molesters hang out where there are children.

The teacher is correct though, had Long been convicted in a criminal court, and had these boys been one year younger, there would be a very different story told. As it is now, Long has a big pile of money which he used to shut down those boys. Seems they're talking anyway and now Long wants his money back.

alknowing said...

In regards to the student of NBCA and the ignorant response from a teacher... I was a teacher at NBCA and this was probably one of my students. I love my school and my students. This school was exceptional and its closing a tragedy. Everything else is media hype.