Public Hearing – ESPLOST V Project List

This Thursday, Oct. 13, 2016 at 7pm at Chamblee High School the public is invited to a meeting to discuss and gather feedback related to the development of the 2017‐2022 E‐SPLOST V project list.

Resolution Item $ millions Percentage
1. Safety and Security $15 3%
2. New Facilities and Additions $230 46%
3. Facility Condition Improvements $100 20%
4. Technology Improvements,incl. ERP $65 13%
5.Buses, Vehicles, and Other Capital Equipment $40 8%
Management and Contingency $50 10%
Totals $500 100%

Category 1: Safety and Security Improvements ($15 Million)
• Life Safety ($9.8 M) – The DeKalb County School District is working with the DeKalb County Fire Marshall on a prioritized list of school facilities that require life safety upgrades, to include automatic sprinklers, fire alarms, emergency lighting, etc.
• Security Improvements ($5.2 M) – Includes Fencing, security vestibules, and/or security lighting

Category 2: New Facilities and Additions ($230 Million E-SPLOST + $25 Million Ga DOE Reimbursements)
  Phase III – Cost Estimates (July 2016)
  Final Recommendation – Cost Estimates (September 2016)

Secondary School Study Recommendation Budget
July September
1. Auditorium Addition at Cedar Grove HS $5M
2. Addition at Chamblee HS (2,400 seat capacity) $19M $16.4
3. Addition at Clarkston HS (1,925 seat capacity) $8M $16M
4. Addition at Dunwoody HS (2,100 seat capacity) $23M $16.4M
5. Addition at Freedom MS (1,675 seat capacity) $8.4M
6. Addition at Lakeside HS (2,500 seat capacity) $34M $22.1M
7. Build a New Cross Keys HS (2,500 seat) $84.8M $84.8M
8. Convert Cross Keys HS to MS with Addition (1,500 seat capacity) $15.0M $12.0M
9. Addition at Peachtree MS (1,700 seat capacity) $17M $13.9M
Total $200M $195M
Two new elementary schools to Serve Cross Keys Cluster
1. John Lewis ES (900 FTE plus land purchase) $30M
2. News ES for Cross Keys North (TBD) $30M

Category 2 has three options: 2A, 2B, and 2C
One new replacement elementary school and other additions

Option 2A: $56.6M Option 2B: $28.0M Option 2C: $0
Rebuild Indian Creek ES
(to 1,200 FTE): $28.0M
1. Rebuild Indian Creek ES
(to 1,200 FTE): $28.0M
Addition at Jolly ES
(250 seat addition): $8.9M
Addition at Chesnut ES
(350 seat addition): $10.5M
Addition at Rowland ES
(325 seat addition): $9.2M

Complete Project List

Five regional meetings to discus and gather feedback related to the development of the 2017‐2022 E‐SPLOST V project list.
Oct 4 – 18, 2016
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

44 responses to “Public Hearing – ESPLOST V Project List

  1. allegra johnson

    An addition to Chesnut Elementary? I missed this the first time. Will this be completed with the new Austin, so that the redistricting shuffle only happens once for the elementary schools?

  2. The current plan is for the new Austin ES to open Fall 2019. There is no timeline for the other additions right now. Cash flow is a big concern. Obviously we can’t do all the projects in the first two years.

  3. Please take that $22.1 M allocated for an addition at Lakeside High School and use it elsewhere. Perhaps the school system could rebuild Henderson Mill ES (overcrowded and in poor condition) or better yet, construct a badly-needed new high school in Doraville. The Lakeside campus cannot accommodate an addition, and the surrounding 2-lane roads cannot handle additional traffic. An addition at Lakeside will likely diminish the overall function of the campus, discourage parental involvement, increase safety risks to students and citizens, decrease transportation efficiency, and lead to a decline in the quality of life of students, teachers, staff, and other residents in the Lakeside area. Shoe-horning hundreds more students onto a land-locked Lakeside campus causes more problems than it will ever solve. While I appreciate efforts to gain stakeholder input, please stop letting a handful of highly-biased stakeholders drive the complex decision-making required to solve school over1crowding. DeKalb needs safe, high-quality schools, distributed across all areas of the county to serve the residents who live closest to those schools. Place magnet programs in schools with vacant seats, and let neighborhood residents be educated in their communities.

  4. This has $0 and zero mention for North DeKalb stadium. I thought they were getting a new track and field along with improved lighting, when did that get removed?

  5. North DeKalb Stadium – Renovations for North DeKalb Stadium, including lighting, track, field, and maybe audio, will be paid for with ESPLOST IV monies. The project discussions now are strictly for ESPLOST V monies.

  6. Frustrated, you are absolutely correct! Lakeside can’t handle an addition and expansion of common spaces, the streets can’t handle more traffic and most of the surrounding communities don’t know this is planned – only a small group of parents are tuned in. When it is complete, if Dan Drake’s projections are correct, it will be at 100 % capacity and the construction project will have taken its toll on instruction during that time as well as the general welfare of the students, staff, and community just like the previous one completed in 2012. Then what? A new cluster is essential for a long term solution. The admin needs to be the adult here and do the right thing rather than cater to the fear of redistricting. The elementary parents advocating to keep the LHS cluster together are fighting to have a school that will be at capacity when they finally arrive.

  7. If you support or oppose the positions taken, you should let your board members and school council chair/members and summit representatives know what your thoughts are.

  8. School council members in some schools have different opinions from one another so there have been no votes taken and no consensus and summit reps (who aren’t elected by anyone) have made up their own minds without informing communities. Directing comments to Dr. Green, Mr. Drake and BOE members may be the best options.

  9. So, while all of these ideas about ways to shift opinions might be good, I am very doubtful they will help. Dr. Green told a small group of Montgomery School council reps in a meeting just before the 9/27 recommendation was released, that the forthcoming recommendation would be what the county would move forward with. Obviously an “official” board vote must occur in December, but will the board really do an about face and go against what Dr. Green wants?
    Here is my take on what’s occurred: Dr. Green becomes the new superintendent…..certain special interest groups get to him quickly and begin pleading their case for an Option B style solution to the Cross Keys cluster overcrowding (and now diversity issue). These groups press and press this issue and even pull out some tough to ignore “cards” like threatened lawsuits, etc. The decision on how to address this becomes pretty solidified in Dr. Green’s mind (Option B with special interest modifications). Fast forward to earlier this year…..said special interest groups begin lobbying to Ashford Park folks and convince an entire elementary school (to my amazement) to voluntarily pull out of a very successful Chamblee Cluster to create the new Brookhaven High (and take Sagamore Hills with them). Stop and let that one sink in for a moment. More backroom politics occur such that here we are at this juncture. Why did the county spend tons of money, and make the community go through this entire process to make them feel like they have a say in things, when they really don’t? What a waste of taxpayer time and money!
    I will add that I do not disagree that the overcrowding and deplorable conditions within the current Cross Keys cluster don’t warrant a lot of attention and money, they absolutely do! BUT, the currently proposed solution is not a long-term, widely encompassing type of scalable solution that is so desperately needed.
    So, all that being said, I have no idea how to stop this train , as another poster put it, at this point. Nothing has changed under this new administration at Dekalb, I’m not impressed.

  10. I agree that school councils and the summit are not unanimous, however they provided position and thought papers in support of additions to their own schools. The board and administration are going to say that the various communities and community leaders came together to discuss the options and as a whole, not necessarily unanimously, have requested additions to their own schools. Any school council in a cluster that didn’t provide a position is considered in agreement with or at least acquiescent of the cluster recommendations.

  11. Yes, This! Survey Says you are absolutely correct. APES cut off their nose to spite their face and let themselves be duped by an extremely political CK Foundation which, by the way, has technically NOTHING to do with Cross Keys High school. It is slimy politics at its best – with lawsuits being threatened so that one party could get exactly what they wanted. Then you have the “holier than thou” folks that say this is a diversity play (see Georgia Educator Blog) and that anyone who disagrees with them is a bigot, racist, whatever name they can find to be called. And like most on the left, they have successfully divided what was a strong community that was once MES/APES and that had really made a strong cluster. MES and APES were pitted against one another with MES coming out with a proposal that was more Option A focused while APES wouldn’t even try to keep the cluster together. APES, you got duped – and now Sagamore wants nothing to do with you. I hope you enjoy that shiny new high school that was promised to you.

  12. North DeKalb HS Clusters

    Here are the North DeKalb HS Clusters. Dr. Green made it clear he was breaking up the Cross Keys Cluster. How do you expect that to go down? What do you expect/want Ashford Park to do?

  13. Simple, build a very much needed Doraville cluster! That solution relieves many of the overcrowding problems in Regions 1 and 2. Wasn’t that the initial intent of this entire exercise?

  14. By building a Doraville, I assume you don’t mean to just split the Cross Keys Cluster in two. Ashfordpark ES is inevitably going to be redistricted with Montclair and Woodward into a South Region 1 cluster no matter what happens.
    What do you expect/want the Ashford Park community to do?

  15. I’ll add to my previous comment…..if Dr. Green’s intent is to break up the Cross Keys cluster, doesn’t a new Doraville school/cluster also do that? What am I missing?

  16. Yes. A new Doraville cluster breaks up the current Cross Keys cluster and is an interesting solution. It alleviates overcrowding in Regions 1 and 2, makes for neighborhood schools, people aren’t driving as far, don’t have to worry about over capacity parking, fields, cafeteria, and other common spaces, etc …
    A number of people are concerned the Doraville cluster would be Cross Keys 2.0. I would say that Cross Keys HS performs better than half the high schools in DeKalb, so I’m not sure what the problem is there as long as they aren’t neglected like they have been in the past.
    The only moral issue is that Doraville doesn’t want a cluster. They want to go to Dunwoody HS and Chamblee HS.

  17. Agree with everything except the last two sentences.

  18. Whoa….wait a minute Stan. How come Dunwoody, Lakeside, and all other clusters were allowed to say as their first priority, “We want to stay in the same cluster?” Yet Chamblee was not? How is that fair to the CCHS cluster? If APES hadn’t just rolled over and died and actually fought to stay in the CCHS cluster, then there might have been other solutions. But it was immediately sent down from somewhere that CCHS would need to be broken up because evidently it was a lilly white high school that needed diversity – even though the high school is only 25% white. And anyone who disagreed with that strategy was an avowed racist and bigot. That was the scheme here.

  19. Ms. Pittman's Helper

    Stan, I am sorry but you are wrong. I have the voicemail and an email from Ms. Pittman to prove it. In fact, Ms. Pittman has asked the school system for the last two years for a high school in her area. Why is she not getting any traction on this item? She has also asked Mr. Clarkson (Chamblee Mayor) to help her in this endeavor. She has a meeting Monday morning with Dr. Green if you would like to/or could attend. She is asking for help from surrounding areas to help her. I have told her that I would help her if this is something she really wants and she clearly has stated that she does. If anyone would love to help me please let me know. My email is

  20. Thanks Stan. Your blog is very helpful.

  21. “The only moral issue is that Doraville doesn’t want a cluster. They want to go to Dunwoody HS and Chamblee HS.”
    Stan, why does this have any consideration at all in the big plan for the District. Why on earth wouldn’t Doraville want a brand-new high school where students can attend close to home. Once that attendance area near the new school is assigned, it will not be a CrossKeys 2.0, but will draw from many of the closest neighborhoods. If you ask the Sagamore contingency, they do not want a Briarcliff High School, but that isn’t a deciding factor for not building in that area. I echo your sentiment that additions to all of the existing high and middle schools is not logistically feasible in many cases. Before approving any of the additions, I would think that basic proposals for how to find space for the seats would be presented to the school board.

  22. Pittman’s Helper,
    Ms. Pittman wants a Doraville High School? If she made a public comment stating this, then that’s a game-changer.
    Let’s see the public statement. Please provide a link.

  23. I’m ready for somebody to publicly state they are from Doraville and they want their kids to go to the Doraville cluster. Thus far, the only feedback I have received is “I am from Doraville and I want a Doraville cluster, just wait until my kids finish going through school in the Dunwoody cluster”.

  24. Ms. Pittman's Helper

    Stan, I talked to her today before I posted my comment to make sure that I am correct in my understanding of what Ms. Pittman wants and needs for her city to have more of a community feel like Dunwoody, Chamblee, Tucker, and Lakeside had. I told her exactly what you said in your blog post. She stated at that time that she would be calling you today to clarify a misunderstanding that the two of you may have had on this item.

  25. I would like the mayor and council to publicly say they want a Doraville cluster and look forward to their own kids going to it.
    I love the idea of having Dunnwoody, Chamblee, Doraville, and BrookeHaven clusters. Unfortunately I can’t make that happen until Doraville residents come out and publicly say that’s what they want.

  26. How does creating a Doraville cluster alleviate Dunwoody overcrowding? Only Hightower feeds to the Dunwoody cluster from there. The other elementary schools and residences are located in Dunwoody. Redistricting the Hightower kids is simply not enough on its own number wise. How do you propose dealing with the rest of the overcrowding that exists with or without Hightower? Trying to get a real answer to this question as a PCMS parent and resident of Dunwoody near Tilly Mill.

  27. I hear you Jane near Tilly Mill. That’s really the crux of the matter here, nobody wants to be redistricted. Adding seats to existing high schools is not a scalable solution. Eventually, one day, we are going to have to build a new high school and redistrict.

  28. Nobody who owns property in the City of Dunwoody should be redistricted. It is pretty cut and dry.
    Sidenote: if the Dekalb County school district is concerned with socio-economic diversity in Dunwoody schools…redistricting the kids from Hightower, Kingsley and/or Chesnut basically defeats that goal.
    Sidenote 2: The future Chesnut addition of 350 seats? Where are the numbers to fill it coming from? Elementary school redistricting that will come down the line? Carver Circle community factored in? Curious. Thanks.

  29. Chamblee High Parent

    Fine Jane. Let’s use your analogy. If nobody that lives in the city of Dunwoody should be redistricted then nobody who lives in the city of Chamblee or Brookhaven should be redistricted! How Dunwoody-centric you are in your thinking.

  30. I see your point, CHP…I guess what I mean is that it should not matter which part of Dunwoody you live in when it comes to decisions about redistricting. Chamblee and Brookhaven are actively growing and expanding so you are not really comparing apples to apples there. With the insane development in your area there is no place else to go but creating new clusters and/ or schools. Dunwoody is basically stable (meaning not a lot of new building). Drive down Peachtree Rd and it looks like there will be an endless supply of new places for Chamblee/ Brookhaven residents. I am not Dunwoody centric at all by the way…you can attack me but my point is that folks on the side of Dunwoody near the middle school are at greatest risk of being sent to a Doraville school even though we are well within Dunwoody city limits. Coincidentally this is also the part of town with more apartment complexes and condos. Hard not to connect the dots!

  31. Jane
    You are correct. We need you and neighbors to send your white children to Chamblee and/or Doraville to make it more diverse.
    It’s okay for Hispanics from Doraville to be a minority in Dunwoody, but not okay for your kids to be a minority in a new Doraville school? Please explain that.

  32. Jane
    Redistricting Hightower does reduce numbers at DHS and PCMS both. In fact, no additions needed at either school if Hightower gets its own cluster.
    Can someone make a rendering of a Doraville High School T-shirt and post it so we can start promoting this?

  33. NotCrawLewis, I am so lost. I specifically stated that our school population is diverse. Have you visited Hightower, Chesnut or Kingsley ever? Your statement is unequivocally false.

  34. Ms. Pittman's Helper

    1) Once CCHS, LHS, DHS are built with additions, they are already going to be at 100% capacity when the building is done with NO room for growth in the future.
    2) Student learning. Building a new high school will only take a year and WILL NOT impact student learning at all. Additions to schools are very disruptive to student learning and take over 2 years to complete an addition.
    3) Building a new Doraville cluster will not only help Doraville but Dunwoody, Chamblee, Lakeside and possible Tucker. You alleviate overcrowding in 4 schools.
    4) TO ME THIS ONE IS KEY. So many people are talking about diversity and a new school would not make the school very diverse. Yes, it can be.
    1) How about adding a health magnet like Miller Grove had or may still have. We have great hospitals right around the corner.
    2) How about a Fine Arts magnet that would serve students with programs that DSA does not offer. You have several movie studios being built or already built in the area.
    3) Add a VoTech like Cross Keys has now. When the new Cross Keys is built they will probably not need a VoTech program anymore because the south end of Buford Hwy is changing.
    There are so many ideas that we could do for a new high school that would pull from many areas.

  35. I know we are diverse in Dunwoody schools, not just Kingsley and Chesnut. More apartments now, and in the future, on the west (southwest) part of Dunwoody. 3,000 new units already set to start soon and many more to follow. Schools in south DeKalb have NO diversity. People live where people live.

  36. NotCrawLewis, most of the socio-economic diversity in Dunwoody comes
    from three or maybe four schools (DES).

  37. Ms. Pittman’s helpers you are Spot On!!!
    One point on all this “Diversity” BS. So basically it is unfair if a school is TO white? We need to shuffle the white kids around to make it fair for all. REALLY? Does this sound the least bit reasonable? Seriously? Why don’t we just make it really fair and go back to bussing and add South DeKalb into this!

  38. NotCrawLewis
    Your responses confuse me? Redistricted for diversity or not?

  39. Jane,
    I thought you were complaining about Dunwoody having too many whites compared to black and Hispanic and Asian. Now you want to make sure we factor in a family’s wealth? This is getting confusing. Is your goal for every school to have equal quantity of each race and also a certainty mix of rich and poor?
    Anon, I’m not in favor of redistricting based on race, religion, or family wealth. Redistrict based on where you live. Build schools where people live. I love the idea of a special magnet at Doraville High. Why not move the magnet from Chamblee to a new Doraville school?
    Really surprised the Dunwoody schools are quiet, especially Vanderlyn cause a bigger DHS really will mess up that area

  40. We are clearly not understanding one another.
    Our side of town is close to Peachtree Middle but further from
    DHS. I see it as a path so it makes no sense to
    redistrict for HS only when we walk to middle school.
    We are all a part of the cluster. Not interested in being
    a part of a Doraville or Chamblee school for HS after going
    to Elementary and Middle in the neighborhood. It is pretty

  41. This week, it was released that 4 elementary schools and 1 high school tested POSITIVE FOR LEAD down in an area that is neglected. We are worried about our CHILDREN BEING POISONED and not knowing how to read at a 3rd grade level by the time they graduate high school!!! At Allgood Elementary, which severely lacks diversity, our roof has been leaking for 3+ years. Our students have to walk down hallways lined with trashcans to catch the rainwater. Please think about advocating for a population whose voices may not be as loud, as we lack the same financial resources as you.

  42. The health and safety of all students and staff is the top priority for DeKalb County School District (DCSD). In light of national events regarding water quality,in September, DeKalb Schools announced a district-wide water testing program as a precaution to ensure the drinking water within its schools are safe for all students and employees.
    While all schools will be tested, the initial schools were chosen based upon the age of students (with priority given to schools with pre-K programs) and age of the facility (with priority given to school built prior to 1986). DCSD has a total of 150 facilities (including schools, leased charter schools, administration buildings, educational buildings, and stadiums). 106 of these original facilities have building(s) which were built prior to 1986. Water testing for all 150 facilities has started and will be completed by the summer of 2017.
    Results Thus Far
    While all schools will be tested, this map displays only those with reported results. The map will be continuously updated to reflect new results received. Enter your school’s name to learn about the test results.

    The District’s testing schedule, testing protocols, copies of all water testing results, and other resources can be found at

  43. What does it really take to convert all the middle schools back to high schools? That is where the entire proximity problem arose.
    Wants some land for a new Doraville High school? Make a deal with the GM plant owners for a modified TAD. I am guessing the school need 30 acres, which is probably worth about $25-30 million. Give the Doraville plant a TAD for the number of years that results in around $80 million loss for DCSS. If the development of the land is successful, DCSS loses out on some revenue and if not DCSS got a good deal for the Doraville HS land. This amount is much less the projected $250 million loss to DCSS for the original TAD rejected by Dr. Green. This could be beneficial to Doraville in more ways than one.

  44. Creative solutions to issues like traffic and parking! Thank you Saint Luke’s for the partnership and community building.