Category: Education

Pandemic Roundup: Bars and clubs can reopen; Atlanta mayor urges testing after protests

News updates about the coronavirus pandemic: Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms and local health officials are concerned that the ongoing protests over the killing of George Floyd could cause a spike in COVID-19 cases. Thousands of people have converged on the city for the past four days in circumstances making social distancing impossible. “If you’re out there protesting, then you need to go get a COVID-19 test this week,” Bottoms said during a weekend press conference. “There’s still a pandemic in America killing black and brown people at a higher rate.” As of 1 p.m. on June 1, there...

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Fulton County Schools to provide student meals at three local sites starting June 3

Fulton County Schools will begin offering student meals for pickup at 22 locations starting June 3 in its “Summer FoodStop” program. The meal pickups will be available Wednesdays 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Each package will contain five breakfasts and five lunches. The local schools with pickup locations include: Ison Springs Elementary, 8261 Ison Road; Lake Forest Elementary, 5920 Sandy Springs Circle; and Sandy Springs Middle, 8750 Pride Place. The meals are available to all children under the age of 18, or under 21 for those with special needs. The pickups operate as a drive-thru — with drivers asked...

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‘Old normal’ is gone, virtual learning will stay after pandemic, says ex-Georgia Tech president

The shift to virtual working and education forced by the coronavirus pandemic is here to stay, says former Georgia Tech president and current Regents professor George “Bud” Peterson. “I don’t think we’ll ever get back to the old normal,” said Peterson, speaking May 21 as part of the Dunwoody Perimeter Chamber of Commerce’s “Return to the Perimeter” virtual discussion series about post-pandemic business. The lingering challenge of developing a COVID-19 vaccine or similar medical measures is one reason the “old normal” isn’t coming soon, said Peterson. But the changes will be even more long-lasting than that, he said. “But...

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Fulton County Schools opens survey for parents, students and staff

Fulton County Schools is conducting an online survey for feedback from parents, students and staff members as a wrap-up of the school year and planning for 2020-2021. Besides reviewing the district in general, the survey “will help us evaluate perceptions and options as it relates to COVID-19 and our potential opening scenarios,” FCS said in an announcement. To take the survey, click...

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Atlanta Public Schools to provide limited meal program in June

Atlanta Public Schools and partner organizations will provide limited meals on three Mondays in June. APS and Southwest Foodservice Excellence, its food service vendor, created a massive free-meal program in March as the coronavirus pandemic closed the district. That program in its various forms served 160,000 meals a week, according to APS. That program ended May 18. The limited summer-break replacement is projected to serve 60,000 meals. On June 1, 8 and 15, the new program will provide five-day meal packs through the partner organizations Horizons, Breakthrough and the Boys and Girls Club, to be distributed to families enrolled...

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Car parade lets Brookhaven and Buckhead teachers and students say farewell

A car parade through parts of Brookhaven and Buckhead on May 13 let some members of the Class of 2020 celebrate, as well as serving as a farewell for students and teachers at such local schools as Sarah Smith Elementary. Such car parades have become popular in many local neighborhoods, as well as nationwide, as the coronavirus pandemic made typical celebrations and farewells impossible. The May 13 version went through the North Buckhead and Pine Hills neighborhoods, among others, and featured graduates from several local public and private schools, such as North Atlanta High and Marist School. Atlanta Public...

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North Atlanta High School virtual graduation celebration to be broadcast May 22

North Atlanta High School’s virtual graduation celebration is scheduled to be broadcast on Friday, May 22 at 7 p.m. The Buckhead school is among 14 that Atlanta Public Schools will hold virtual celebrations for May 18-22. While the traditional in-person graduation ceremonies have been postponed to later in the summer or fall due to social distancing and other guidance from public health officials, APS has created video celebrations for each school, featuring remarks by Superintendent Meria Carstarphen and the school’s principal, valedictorian and salutatorian. The video will stream at facebook.com/AtlantaPublicSchools and will be available on APS Channel 22 on...

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Board of Education rejects Crew as next DeKalb Schools superintendent

Rudolph “Rudy” Crew, the sole finalist for the DeKalb County School District superintendent job, was rejected by the Board of Education in a 4-3 vote May 11. DeKalb Schools said in a written statement that it is “reviewing its next steps” and intends to identify another candidate to become interim superintendent by July 1. That is the day after current Superintendent Ramona Tyson is scheduled to retire. Crew, president of Medgar Evers College in New York City, was the sole finalist among 68 candidates in a months-long process, according to DeKalb Schools. His candidacy drew criticism from some parents...

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School board hires Herring as new superintendent of Atlanta Public Schools

Lisa Herring has officially been appointed as the new superintendent of Atlanta Public Schools. The Atlanta Board of Education voted to hire Herring at a special called virtual meeting May 11. The decision was not unanimous, with Nancy Meister of Buckhead’s District 4 casting the lone dissenting vote. Herring’s three year contract will begin July 1, but she will have a consulting role with APS as she transitions from superintendent of Birmingham City Schools to Atlanta. Board Chairman Jason Esteves said current superintendent, Meria Carstarphen, would remain in charge through June 30. The goal is to ensure a continuity...

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Brookhaven elementary school teachers to bid students farewell with car parade

Teachers from two Brookhaven elementary schools will hold a “car parade” through neighborhoods May 8 to say a socially distanced farewell to their students. The teachers from the John R. Lewis and Woodward elementary schools, which serve southern Brookhaven and the Buford Highway area, will drive in their personal cars, according to DeKalb County School District spokesperson Carla Parker. The district has been shuttered since March due to the pandemic and the school year is ending early. May 8 is the last day for seniors, while May 15 is the final day for all other students. Similar car parades...

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Atlanta Public Schools to hold virtual celebration May 7 for valedictorians, other standout students

Atlanta Public Schools will hold a virtual celebration May 7 for its valedictorians, salutatorians and STAR student honorees. STAR students are those with the highest SAT scores and high grade-point average rankings in their schools, as recognized in the Student Teacher Achievement Recognition program of the Professional Association of Georgia Educators Foundation. The celebration will be streamed 9-10 a.m. on the APS Facebook page...

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Atlanta Public Schools superintendent finalist says she has more to learn

Lisa Herring, the finalist for the Atlanta Public Schools superintendent position, said she has more to learn in response to questions from about 120 participants in a May 5 virtual town hall for the North Atlanta Cluster. Herring’s answers on such topics as charter schools and Title I funding were lengthy, but specifics were few, as she sidestepped taking controversial stances and deferred to the Atlanta Board of Education and its strategic plan. One controversy she did address specifically was her transition coming in the midst of the pandemic, with its district closure and virtual processes. “I understand that...

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