Category: Education

DeKalb Schools seeks input on E-SPLOST budget, potential $265M bond

Increasing construction costs are forcing the DeKalb County School District to find ways to cover costs for education special purpose local option sales tax approved by voters three years ago, including the possibility of asking them to vote next year on a potential $265 million general obligation bond. School administrators are holding a series of public meetings to discuss E-SPLOST options that also include delaying certain projects. A meeting at Chamblee High School, 3688 Chamblee-Dunwoody Road, is set for Aug. 27 at 7 p.m. For other meeting locations, visit www.dekalbschoolsga.org/e-splost/e-splost-and-go-bond-2019/. A key part of the proposed options is a...

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Fulton Schools superintendent to speak in Sandy Springs Sept. 11

The new superintendent of the Fulton County School System, Dr. Mike Looney, will speak at a Sandy Springs Perimeter Chamber luncheon on Sept. 11 from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Westin Atlanta Perimeter North, 7 Concourse Pkwy N.E. According to Fulton Schools’ Chief Communications Officer Brian Noyes, Looney will speak about his background and an overview of his initial observations of the school district. “He will also summarize the board’s strategic plan and the district’s work focus for the current academic year,” Noyes said. Before joining Fulton Schools in June, Looney served as Superintendent of Williamson County...

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Dunwoody seeks legal remedies against DeKalb Schools for trailers

The Dunwoody City Council is moving forward on seeking potential legal remedies to stop the DeKalb County School District from putting more trailers on school campuses to deal with overcrowding without more city input. The council also revoked a two-year memorandum of understanding with the school district that was meant to streamline the city’s permitting and inspection process of trailers but instead was ignored by school officials, according to the city. The actions were approved at the council’s Aug. 12 meeting. Several parents attending the more than 3-hour meeting applauded following the vote. Councilmembers Lynn Deutsch and Terry Nall,...

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Exceptional Educator: Kathy Vail, Dunwoody High School fencing team leader

Kathy Vail has led Dunwoody High Fencing from its start as a small team in 2009 to a full club with a large practice area. Now, she’s won the United States Fencing Association’s Outstanding Service Award for Youth Fencing for her work building and coaching the program, which allows high school students to learn fencing and participate in competitions with other Georgia schools. “Receiving the award at the National Championships in front of coaches and fencers from across the country was amazing and humbling,” Vail said. “To be asked to speak to young fencers about our sport was a...

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Summer program marks 20 years of serving low-income students

A summer education program serving low-income students from Sandy Springs’ public schools is celebrating its 20th anniversary. The Horizons Atlanta program at Holy Innocents’ Episcopal School (HIES) teaches students so they don’t fall behind during the break, while also helping them deal with major issues like deportation threats. Horizons enrolls 135 students each summer to teach them more literacy and math through special projects at HIES Sandy Springs. Students in the program at HIES come from two feeder schools, Lake Forest Elementary and High Point Elementary, both in Sandy Springs. The teachers and instructors come from a mix of...

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Dunwoody officials, parents urge DeKalb Schools to fix overcrowding

Overcrowding at several DeKalb County schools in Dunwoody continues to anger some parents and frustrate city officials as they watch more portable classrooms, or trailers, being planted on campus grounds to house students and teachers no longer able to fit into the main school buildings. DeKalb County School District officials say they are handling the overcrowding, which is focused in the northern area of the county, as best as they can with funding from education special local option sales tax dollars, or ESPLOST. Adding trailers is currently the most cost-effective and efficient way, according to district administrators. But construction...

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City Council told more trailers expected next year at Dunwoody High School

More trailers are likely to be added to Dunwoody High School next year to handle the ongoing overcrowding, according to a DeKalb County Schools official. Dan Drake, interim chief operations officer for the DeKalb County School District, told the Dunwoody City Council July 22 that he expects more trailers will be added to the high school next year. He said he did not know how many new trailers would be added. The news comes after DeKalb Schools added two new portable quads, totaling eight classrooms, to DHS earlier this month. The City Council also learned construction of the DHS...

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Sandy Springs city school district would be financially feasible, study says

A study commissioned by a Sandy Springs group advocating for a city school district has found creating one would be financially feasible. The study found Sandy Springs’ taxes would generate sufficient funding to operate the 11 public schools within the city’s borders, which are currently operated by the Fulton County School District. Projected revenues for a separate Sandy Springs school district would be approximately $163.3 million. Operating expenses were estimated to be $65.2 million. The study, which is dated to April but just released, was authored by Kelly McCutchen, a senior fellow and former president and CEO of the...

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Fulton Schools names new Riverwood International Charter principal

The Fulton County School System has named a new Riverwood International Charter School principal to replace Charles Gardner, who is moving to a position in Marietta City Schools. The new principal is Kindra Smith, a former Fulton County Principal of the Year who was most recently at Elkins Pointe Middle in Roswell for four years. She will begin the position July 22, according to a letter posted on the school’s website. The school will host two events to meet Smith on July 29 and Aug. 2 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. in the Riverwood auditorium, 5900 Raider Drive. Gardner...

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Dunwoody OKs construction of high school trailers after DeKalb Schools gets permit

Construction and installation of new trailers at Dunwoody High School has resumed after the city halted the work because they said the DeKalb County School District did not have the proper permit. Community Development Director Richard McLeod said the city issued the school district a land disturbance permit on July 10, allowing crews to continue work on the trailers. McLeod stopped work on the trailers on July 8 because DeKalb Schools did not have the permit, he said. Two new portable quads, totaling 8 classrooms, were placed at DHS between July 1-5, according to DeKalb Schools. Before now, the...

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Dunwoody stops construction of trailers at high school, says work lacked permit

The city of Dunwoody stopped construction of portable classrooms at Dunwoody High School on July 8 after officials said the DeKalb County School District placed the trailers over the Fourth of July holiday week without the proper permit. Community Development Director Richard McLeod said the stop-work order was issued Monday morning because the work was done without receiving a land disturbance permit as required by city ordinance and a 2017 memorandum of understanding agreement between the city and the school district. “We told the workers to leave the site,” McLeod said. “They don’t have a land disturbance permit. No...

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School districts approve, prepare 2020 budgets

The Atlanta, DeKalb and Fulton school districts have approved budgets for next year that will bring teacher pay raises. Atlanta Public Schools Board of Education approved its budget June 3. The $854 million budget would provide $2,000 raises for teachers, less than the $3,000 amount called for by Gov. Brian Kemp. APS said the amount of money provided by the state would not cover all the costs to provide the $3,000 raises. The district would provide the raises if it is able to secure additional revenue, it said in a release. The full $3,000 raises are expected to be...

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