Charter schools cannot be viewed as the ultimate solution to problems with the local schools. Now, before you think that this is just another charter-school bashing article, I want to say that I serve on the board of PATH Academy (a DeKalb charter school with a lottery and a separate governing board) and I send my daughter to a DeKalb theme school (a public school with a lottery yet without a separate governing board).
I spend inordinate amounts of time thinking about DeKalb Schools and one of the questions I have continued to be plagued by is this: Why are the facilities in DeKalb in a state of such disrepair, especially compared to other Metro Atlanta school districts? I began to look at the traditional arguments: “Other districts have more money to invest in their schools,” “That district’s buildings are newer,” “Those districts have wealthier students,” or “Those districts spend more money per student.” I’m not entirely convinced that those answers explain why DeKalb’s buildings suffer more than other districts.
The new communities that will be forged and the new friendships and support systems that will arise are worth these growing pains towards a more just and equitable education system for DeKalb County Schools. It will have its challenges.
Please, DeKalb Schools, don’t tear down more affordable apartments in our community. A couple weeks ago, our Cross Keys community was excited to find out that we are moving closer to getting a long overdue new school building. However, my... Continue Reading →
Obviously, I knew it wasn’t going to be easy. I really tried to work with the school administration to help address truly important issues that seemed essential to retaining teachers and helping holistically increase student achievement. However, that style of proactive problem-solving was great for getting some things done. It was not, on the other hand, effective at building strong relationships between me and my administration.
The Shallowford Gardens property looks like it’s going to become an elementary school. There isn’t much that we can do about that at this point. In the future, however, I would love to see a revised site selection process that includes community input and a thorough site analysis and final report. This would go a long way toward improving and sustaining a healthy relationship between the school district and its families.
Before deciding to knock down your students’ homes after promising those same students and their families new facilities to address long-term neglect of the Cross Keys Cluster, I think DCSD should have involved the public in the process, exhaustively explored other options and been able to provide clear, written and thorough explanations as to why alternative properties were not feasible.
I’m really trying to be collaborative. I’m trying to understand the logic that leaders in DeKalb are using. But today, I’m having an extremely difficult time reconciling that objective with the latest news that DeKalb County School District is going... Continue Reading →
If we are using data to drive our practice, we need to use solid numbers that allow practitioners to identify and isolate individual variables so that we can at least know what the issue is. Let's actually close the achievement gap, not just pretend that we are.