The options for the DeKalb County Secondary Schools Planning and Feasibility Study are out for public review and comment. The big question in the minds of many thoughtful people is “Which option is best for DeKalb?” I wish I could... Continue Reading →
Before the Tuesday, May 10, and Thursday, May 12, secondary schools meetings next week, I want our community to consider one last option for our high schools. I consider this option to be somewhat of a middle ground option, and I hope that after thinking through these different ideas, we will be able to think a bit more clearly about the potential future of DeKalb Schools in Region 1.
In my mind, this integrating of two medium-sized high schools into one large high school can benefit our community and our school system (both financially, academically, and athletically), but we need to be okay with thinking outside the box and making some changes to our comfort zones.
I have also been told that "people in Ashford Park don't spend $700,000 on a house for their kids to go to Cross Keys." I think that we need to truly examine ourselves and our district if we are going to continue to let these types of reasons be the reasons why we decide not to redistrict or rebuild in certain areas. I believe if people want to spend a lot of money for their children's education, then they are welcome to attend private school.
I mostly understood the request for redistricting to be a request for schools close-by (i.e. Chamblee MS, Chamblee HS, Ashford Park ES) to receive students, since they are within the same cities and communities of our Cross Keys cluster students. I think this is why many parents are voicing frustrations and concerns about how the district decided to redistribute the students.
One cluster should not bear the effects of overcrowding while another cluster is protected from this because of the way that the attendance zone lines are drawn. Under the current options, the Cross Keys cluster continues to add trailers while the Chamblee High and Chamblee Middle are projected to receive ZERO.
If we want to figure out why Cross Keys is a “priority” school, I believe some of the reasons can be explained in this post. When students don’t feel valued, when students can’t simply come to school and study uninterrupted by chaos, they are more inclined to skip or drop out.
First and foremost, in August 2016, send students in the Cross Keys cluster to Chamblee Charter HS to fill the roughly 300 empty seats available there because this makes the most efficient use of space in existing buildings. If you sent students who were incoming freshman, you could minimize disruption to student and family lives.