School Readiness Report 2018-2019

Schools and Centers

• 76 Elementary Schools
• 19 Middle Schools
• 22 High Schools
• 14 Centers
• 8 Start-Up Charter Schools
• 7 Regions / Decentralization
139 Total Schools and Centers

Student Enrollment (PreK – 12)

• 100,341 students last year (FY2018)
• 100,406 projected enrollment this year (FY2019)

26 New Principals

1. Yul Toombs – International Student Center
2. Dr. Donnie Davis – Peachtree MS
3. Antoinette Seabrook – Brockett ES
4. Lakwanza Fields – Evansdale ES
5. Cassandra Moore – Henderson Mill ES
6. Kari Schrock – Laurel Ridge ES
7. Tara Doughtery – Midvale ES
8. Jocelyn Harrington – Pleasantdale ES
9. Tracy Harrell – Lithonia MS
10. Nicole Bullen – Hambrick ES
11. Dr. Sean Deas – Dunaire ES
12. Stephanie Brown-Bryant – Indian Creek ES
13. Ayesha Grandison – Jolly ES
14. Cathy Goolsby – Redan ES
15. Dr. Sylvia Hall-Sanders – Shadow Rock ES
16. Dr. Char-Shenda Covington – Stone Mountain ES
17. Dr. Wislene John – Stone Mountain HS
18. Pattie Lemelle – Clarkston HS
19. Michael Alexander – Chapel Hill MS
20. Dr. Latashia Searcy – Miller Grove HS
21. LaKeisha Griffith – Towers HS
22. Dr. Shelton Bernard – Cedar Grove HS
23. Marcia Coston-Scott – Cedar Grove MS
24. Eric Kemp – Bethune MS
25. Shaun Wells – McNair Discovery
26. Lisa Watkins – Narvie J. Harris ES

Student Support & Intervention

• Bullying/Harassment awareness training for administrators, teachers, bus drivers, and officers

• Implementation of additional PBIS schools and an increased focus on Restorative Practices and mental health awareness to address discipline disproportionality

• Continued implementation of “My Brother’s Keeper” and “Our Sister’s Keeper” ⎼ focusing on the reduction of disciplinary infractions, increased school attendance, and increased enrollment in advanced courses ⎼ in support of all students, especially students of color

• Official launch of Centralized Online Registration Center at former Avondale HS

• Intensify efforts to support homeless, foster, international, and migrant students through increased monitoring of academic, behavioral, and attendance data

Public Safety

• Addition of 10 School Resource Officers and 1 Sergeant to increase safety on campuses

• Close monitoring of gang activity, and increased community collaboration for gang prevention/education

• Decentralization of safety personnel to provide increased support in local schools

• Safe School Unit will be deployed to support local school sites and assist with safety barriers


• We have over 850 bus drivers transporting more than 50,000 students this year

• All bus-stop information has been placed on the District website and issued to local school principals

• 60 brand new propane buses will be on the road this Fall

School Nutrition Services

• Addition of Six Community Eligibility Provision Elementary Schools ⎼ Avondale, Dunaire, McLendon, Rainbow, Woodridge, and Woodward ⎼ for a new total of 40 schools

• Starting with Princeton Elementary, we are developing plans to implement 5 Supper Programs in 2019.

• Fernbank Science Center is piloting the use of eco-friendly, compostable meal trays for sustainability ⎼ effective September 2018.

• Implementation of a District-Wide School Nutrition Marketing Plan to improve meal presentation and customer service

• New menu format with innovative nutrition education featured each month; High School menus updated to include more student favorites; Menus available on the School Nutrition website


Raises and a formal Salary Step Structure to commence on July 1, 2018 and January 1, 2019 as follows:

• July 1, 2018: A 2.5% salary increase for all employees, except for: Principals, Assistant Principals, Directors and above, and AIC-based staff.

• January 1, 2019: A 2.5% salary increase for employees NOT included in the July 1, 2018 increase; Implementation of a formal Salary Step Structure for ALL staff.

Reduction of the operating millage rate from 23.28 mills to 23.18 mills in FY2019, resulting in a $2.3 million property tax reduction

23 responses to “School Readiness Report 2018-2019

  1. Thanks for publishing this information. Let’s hope all these new principals are effective and stick around for years to come.

  2. I’ve heard that magnet school budgets have been cut by 20% this year. Does anyone know the thinking behind that move? We’re already pretty close to the bone at my child’s school.

  3. Magnet schools? That doesn’t sound right. Magnet schools are like any other traditional school unless they are a charter school. Ask your principal if their budget has been cut.

  4. My school (DSA) is actively looking for ways to cut the budget. A teacher said in class that this was due to a “20% budget cut from the county.” Another teacher told me that the budget cut applied to magnet schools, and they weren’t sure of the reason. I haven’t had a chance to speak to the principal yet.

  5. Thanks for this info! It looks like the “other” or discretionary funding has gone down $19,931 or 18%. Maybe that’s what I’m hearing about?

  6. sjester_snol5009

    That is correct. The district is using the discretionary funding to balance the budget.

  7. Why weren’t all the principal positions filled?

  8. Per DSA: Looks like nearly 10% increase in their budget. Maybe they’re using the Washington definition of a budget cut, where the planned amount of budget increase was reduced.
    Some other interesting items, budget amount for both custodial staff and clerical staff more than doubled, while aides and parapros took a major (75%) hit.

  9. sjester_snol5009

    What schools currently don’t have a principal? I thought I remembered them saying at the last board meeting that all the principal positions were filled.

  10. Toney Elem. According to board notes, the positions was interviewed for back in July, and the posting was removed from PATS.

  11. sjester_snol5009

    Toney ES … I don’t know. I’m geographically removed and not real familiar with the principal search at Toney. You could email Toney’s board rep. I doubt they have much of a school council.

  12. The school is not listed above on your New Principals Report.

  13. Thanks

  14. Mr Jester,

    Do all of the new principals have a leadership coach? If two can be assigned to the Chamblee principal, it does not seem fair if the other new principals do not have a coach to support them.

    Thank you

  15. CCHS Principal is not new. This is her second year. I’m not sure how the administration is deciding which principals need that level of support.

  16. Dear Stan,
    As always thank you for speaking up and trying to encourage an open and fair process for all. There was an article in AJC on yesterday about the DeKalb BOE working on goals for Dr. Green.

  17. I saw that (and commented on it). I don’t agree with legal who said “goals are considered part of the superintendent’s evaluation which, by state law, is private.” I’ve shared Superintendent Green’s Goals And Self Evaluation ( in the past, but I can’t do that now until I straighten it out with legal.

  18. Nancy Jester

    Regarding the AJC article:

    The 180 superintendents in the state have so much power and zero accountability to the public. School boards are neutered by state law. The state DOE and BOE are toothless and spineless. The legislature won’t cross the superintendents lobby. The GSBA just mimics what the superintendents want at the state level. Evaluation documents should be public. Heck, the public should be part of the evaluation process. Why does the state continue to renew superintendent licenses without results? If you were a lawyer that bungled every case, would you still have a fat salary? If you were a CPA that messed up the majority of tax returns you worked on, how many clients would you have? Sad that we don’t have the same respect for our children. We allow them to be so ill served with no consequences for the adults who perpetuate this.

    Oh, and if you try to hold them accountable by asking tough questions and demanding answers, or even talk to a taxpayer funded staff member of the district, or visit a taxpayer funded school, they can always scream you’re “micromanaging” and call AdvancED/SACS. That threat keeps real accountability from messing up their sweet superintendent deal.

  19. New principals are given a coach for their first 3 years. After that, the principal can decide if they would like a coach for a longer period of time.

  20. @FormerDCSD,
    Thank you for that information. However, at Chamblee Charter High School the District assigned two former principals to be onsite at CCHS as Executive Coaches.

    This sounds like much more support than having a mentor for 3 years. The community has been given nothing in writing to explain the role of these Executive Coaches.

    Keep in mind that the FY19 salary for the CCHS principal is listed as $104,293.

    I don’t know why someone who makes that kind of salary should need 2 onsite Executive Coaches. That kind of support wasn’t offered to –or needed by — the former CCHS principal, who had never been a high school principal before he took the job.

  21. @ FormerDCSD – Can you say more about this coach role for 3 years? Is the coach on site for 3 years or just a principal in the district that the new principal can call if they have a question? Does the coach give feedback about the new principal’s performance to someone? If so, to whom and how is the info used to improve a new principal’s performance?

  22. My bad. The CCHS principal makes $106,009, not “just” $104,293.


  23. The coach/mentor is a mandate for the first three years of a new principalship in the county. Coaches are typically retired principals that have come back to work part time. The coach is not there each day- they typically oversee a handful of new principals. I would estimate they were on site once per week at the most, once every other week at the least. My understanding is that the suggestions/feedback they give doesn’t have to be followed— it’s a position of support, not a tool for evaluation purposes.
    At my prior school we always knew when the coach was present because the principal was highly visible, interacting with students/staff, and trying his/her best to show what a great leader he/she was.