Key Takeaways – Facilities Study – Round 3 Meetings

In August, education planning consultants for DeKalb Schools presented Round 3 Options at Clarkston and Cross Keys high schools. Following the presentation, the audience broke down into small groups and moved into classrooms where they discussed with facilitators the pros & cons of the 3 options.

The education planning consultants came away with these Key Takeaways from the August public Round 3 meetings.

•  Parents want facilities fixed – not a Band-Aid – and cost does not seem to be a major concern
•  Parents want to know specifics of who will be redistricted
•  Parents want to know impact on elementary schools
•  Traffic impact, especially pertaining to Briarcliff site, is a major concern
•  Consensus on moving magnet programs is unclear – many parents opposed to moving successful program, but others indicate support for more centralized program, or expanding magnets to more schools
•  Option C might have more support if sites are named where magnets would move
•  Concern about impact on property values and keeping communities intact
•  Concern that DCSD will work cooperatively with DeKalb/municipal governments on whatever plan is adopted
•  Some support for developing one or more new options, including rebuilding Cross Keys HS on current site
•  Overwhelming support for Option A among those who indicated a preference:


Option A
Pros Most new seats; Doesn’t move magnets; No split feeders; Affects fewest students; Eliminates portables; Uses Briarcliff site; Better long-term solution
Cons Most expensive + new school means ongoing operating costs; Requires land purchase; Traffic impact + school zone crosses I-85; Large HS; Could take long time to implement; Does not improve Cross Keys facility; Separates schools socio-economically


Option B
Pros Least expensive + no ongoing cost of additional high school; New Cross Keys HS; Eliminates portables; Doesn’t move magnets; More effective use of Briarcliff site; Improves more schools; Creates more diverse schools; Could be fastest implementation
Cons Number of projects creates logistical challenges; Not enough new seats – temporary fix, more redistricting will be needed later; Split feeders; More student moves than Option A – affects more schools, more disruptive; Traffic impact and travel distance to schools – school zone crosses I-85, teens driving to/from Briarcliff


Option C
Pros Same as Option A plus: Putting magnet at Avondale HS makes it more accessible, would reduce traffic; Increases Chamblee HS capacity; Less expensive than Option A; New high school smaller size
Cons Same as Option A plus: Moves magnet programs – where?; Moving magnet would harm program if students don’t follow; Most student moves

Aug 23 – Sep 16, 2016:
Online Survey on three Options
• Request for Cluster-level joint formal school council response

Sep 27, 2016
• Present the Secondary School Study final recommendation at the Building SPACES Presentation

Oct 4 – 17, 2016
Five public hearings in October to discuss the E-SPLOST V project draft list.
The draft list, compiled through the Building S.P.A.C.E.S. Initiative, will be publicly presented Sept. 27.

Each public hearing will be at 7 p.m. at the following locations:
• Oct. 4, 2016 at Tucker High School (Region 2)
• Oct. 11, 2016 at Miller Grove High School (Region 4)
• Oct. 13, 2016 at Chamblee High School (Region 1)
• Oct. 17, 2016 at Columbia High School (Region 5)
• Oct. 18, 2016 at Stone Mountain High School (Region 3)

Oct 4 – 24, 2016
• Online Survey on draft E-SPLOST project list

Nov 7, 2016
• Board COW discussion on E-SPLOST project list

Dec 5, 2016
• Formal Board approval of E-SPLOST project list

4 responses to “Key Takeaways – Facilities Study – Round 3 Meetings

  1. This is the last step: “Formal Board approval of E-SPLOST project list” — Shouldn’t that have been done BEFORE the citizens voted on E-SPLOST IV?

  2. For years, DCSD has ducked and/mishandled growth projections, AND been completely afraid to redraw lines in a sensible, “greater good” way (or bullied into not doing it). The clear preference for Option A is because people want to have a solution that at least has a chance of working and fixing the majority of the issues for more than just a few years. Each go-round of this that we don’t get a solution for more than just a few years just dooms us to the perpetual cycle of reaction; we’ll never actually get to forward-looking growth projection. And I’m almost afraid to ask – the new Carver Hills expansion in Zone 1… is anyone at DCSD figuring out what it means to take 34 home and turn it into 200?

  3. re: Carver Hills redevelopment. I don’t believe there would be much impact on schools within the townhome development but the single-family housing could add students to an already over-crowded Dunwoody cluster. I don’t believe the plans submitted by the developer included any projected numbers that I could locate.

  4. By the way, the online survey allows multiple votes from the same person/computer. We just voted 3 times in a row from the same laptop, and each vote was separately tallied in the results. So…..I would venture to say this survey is pretty much invalid. The County might want to look into this.