On Monday, the Board of Education approved the interim Redistricting Plan for the 2020-2021 School Year.
Action 1 – Approve the recommended school attendance areas, effective July 1, 2020 for the 2020-2021 school year, as shown on the Elementary School Attendance Areas Map (dated 01/13/2020).
Action 2 – Move of Kittredge Magnet School from the Nancy Creek facility to the former John Lewis facility, beginning the 2020-2021 school year.
Action 3 – Use Nancy Creek facility as a fourth and fifth grade annex for Dunwoody Elementary to provide temporary enrollment relief, beginning the 2020-2021 school year.
Action 4 – Initiate the Request for Proposals (RFP) for the Comprehensive Master Plan (CMP) for the District that will address issues of redistricting, facility utilization (overcrowding and underutilization), and locations of instructional programs/school choice programs at District schools and facilities.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
The administration released this FAQ in an attempt to answer the most Frequently Asked Questions.
Q. What are you doing to relieve the overcrowding in the Dunwoody cluster?
A: We are redistricting 102 students from Dunwoody ES to Austin ES. Additionally, we are moving Kittredge Magnet School from the current Nancy Creek facility to its original location at the former John Lewis facility next to Kittredge Park as a temporary annex relief option for several years. We will then use the Nancy Creek facility as a 4th and 5th grade annex to Dunwoody Elementary. This will allow us to remove all portable classrooms from Dunwoody Elementary in time for the start of the 2020-2021 school year. This is a temporary solution until more permanent relief can be provided via a new elementary school, which is accounted for in the proposed budget.
Q: What else are you doing?
A: We are making redistricting recommendations for 800 students to relieve additional overcrowding across the district and populate the new Doraville United elementary school of which 102 will move from Dunwoody ES to Austin ES.
Q: Why aren’t you doing more to relieve overcrowding?
A: One of our primary goals in this process is to minimize disruption to families, so we view all redistricting changes as part of a comprehensive, long-term lens. The proposed minimal redistricting changes will provide significant, albeit temporary, relief. This doesn’t fix everything, but it’s a good start. The proposed Comprehensive Master Plan will outline comprehensive, long-term redistricting recommendations.
We need to face the reality that we can’t solve our overcrowding issue in a year; this will be a long journey that will begin this August, which is why this is an “Interim” Redistricting Plan. Our leadership team spent countless hours listening to parents and community members, pouring over data and analyzing dozens of options.
Q: What if parents have to pick up students at both Dunwoody Elementary and the new annex location?
A: The facilities are located 2.8 miles from each other. We are looking into some creative options to relieve stress on parents with students in both locations by providing transportation options.
Q: Won’t students going to Kittredge have to travel farther to get to the new location?
A: Kittredge Magnet School serves the entire district, which means students travel from across the county to get there. Returning the school to its original location next to Kittredge Park places it in a more central location. Today, we have students attending from 47 schools across the district.
Q: How much will it cost to retrofit the John Lewis facility?
A: We estimate it will cost at most $1 million to update the facility with security enhancements, needed
furniture and fixtures, and technology retrofits that are standard across the district.
Q: What about Cross Keys and Sequoyah? The community has been promised a school for some time now.
A: We know this community has been waiting for a new high school. While we have constructed two new elementary schools within the last two years (John Lewis ES opened Fall 2019 and Doraville United ES will open August 2020). Unfortunately, we do not have the funds to build a new high school at Cross Keys at this time. Commencing construction on schools like this requires the district to have all the money accounted for in advance, and we currently don’t have it. Once our financial reports have been audited and approved by the state and our credit rating restored, we will begin to explore alternative options for funding the school.
Q: What about the K-12 Art School?
A: At this time, we do not have a complete vision or budget for the K-12 Art School. We recommend holding commencement of the project until there is a more robust vision and enough budget to do the job right.
Q: Why are $263 million in projects being deferred?
A: We are deferring these funds from eight middle and high school capacity projects. Rising construction costs have caused the projected E-SPLOST V program to exceed the projected revenue. The deferred projects will enable us to balance the budget. They will also be considered as part of the Comprehensive Master Plan, which will inform the future direction and scope of major projects.