Over the past couple of years, I’ve been blogging less on the Georgian Educator because I’ve started to focus on a more holistic view of what’s needed to maintain and build up a thriving, diverse, and resilient community in Doraville and the broader Buford Highway corridor. As all good teachers come to realize, education is only one component of student, family, and overall community health. Based on this broader lens, I announced to my neighbors in June that I am running for Doraville City Council, and with qualifying over this past week, it’s official!
Beyond education, I will be focusing my campaign on housing, connectivity, building strong communities, economic development, and inclusivity. You can find more details on the issues I am running on at https://www.rebekahcohenmorris.com/issues. I will also be sharing policy ideas, community information, and campaign updates in my newsletter (subscribe here). You can also follow me on FaceBook at /RebekahforDoraville and on Twitter @RCohenMorris.
I think cities, and Doraville in particular, have a unique role to play in education through direct relationship with schools systems and more indirectly through broader land use, zoning, and transportation policies. I will continue to focus on education issues and actions we can take together to support our schools and community as a whole. I focused on education at a recent campaign event, and you can find my slides here if you are interested.
I still plan to post about education on this blog. I still teach and serve as the 10th Grade Level Chair of Language Arts at a high school in Gwinnett County; I serve on the board of the PTA in my daughter’s DCSD school, Oakcliff Traditional Theme School, and I serve on the board of a DeKalb charter school called PATH Academy.
I am also intricately involved with the Cary Reynolds Community Support Team, the Peachtree Gateway Council on Schools, and the Grupo de Padres de las Escuelas de Cross Keys. With upcoming redistricting and ePSLOST issues, there are plenty of education issues that we should all stay engaged with as residents, parents, and — if I earn my neighbors’ vote — as municipal elected officials.
Also, I hope to see you at DCSD’s upcoming public meetings. The closest one for our area will be held at Chamblee Charter High School on Tuesday, August 27, 2019, at 7:00PM, where they’ll discuss eSPLOST project cost overruns and potential new property taxes to pay for them. (I’ll be going to the first one at Clarkston High School tomorrow night in order to post before the Tuesday meeting to give my insights.)
I go into these meetings with two clear ideas that push me in opposite directions. 1) DCSD has clear and significant problems with school capacity and maintenance at many schools, and 2) DCSD spends way too much on each project compared to its peers in the region.
Before coming to the meeting on Tuesday, I would encourage you to read this article on the upcoming public meetings, this coverage on construction cost differences between DCSD and other school systems in the region, and these materials from DCSD.
Here is the complete list of upcoming eSPLOST and GO Bond meetings:
- Clarkston High School, August 26, 2019, 7:00 pm
- Chamblee High School, August 27, 2019, 7:00 pm
- Miller Grove High School, August 28, 2019, 7:00 pm
- Columbia High School, September 4, 2019, 7:00 pm
- Lakeside High School, September 10, 2019, 7:00 pm