Tune in to the board business meeting tonight: Jan. 14 at 6pm

Tune in Monday at 6:00 PM to the DEKALB BOARD OF EDUCATION BUSINESS MEETING. (A separate business meeting often follows the previous week’s work session in order to vote on consent items. However, the agendas for the business meetings sometimes do not follow the work session exactly and we are treated to surprises.  Watch for them. Click here to read our post on last week’s work session for comparison.)  You can stream it online [click here] or watch live on PDS Comcast 24. Or for some real fun – go in person!

Here is the agenda – there are some key decisions being made tonight.

By: Dr. Eugene P. ‘Gene’ Walker, Chair

Dr. Eugene P. ‘Gene’ Walker, Chair
Ms. Sarah Copelin-Wood
Mr. Jesse ‘Jay’ Cunningham, Jr.
Ms. Donna G. Edler
Ms. Nancy T. Jester
Dr. Melvin Johnson
Mr. James L. ‘Jim’ McMahan
Mr. Marshall D. Orson
Dr. Pamela A. Speaks

Dr. Cheryl L. H. Atkinson, Superintendent


1. Executive Leadership Academy Candidate Recognition
Presented by: Ms. Kendra D. March, Deputy Superintendent, Division of School Leadership & Operational Support

2. Dunwoody High School Girls Cross Country ~ Class AAAAA Champions
Presented by: Ms. Nancy T. Jester, Board Representative, District #1

1. Election of Chair and Vice Chair for the 2013 Calendar Year
Presented by: Dr. Eugene P. ‘Gene’ Walker, Chair

1. Establishment of Dates & Times of DeKalb Board of Education Meetings for 2013
Presented by: Board Chair-Elect

2. Official Functions of the Board for Calendar Year 2013
Presented by: Board Chair-Elect




1. Approval of Minutes
Presented by: Dr. Cheryl L.H. Atkinson, Superintendent

2. Approval of Financial Monthly Report
Presented by: Mr. Michael J. Perrone, Chief Financial Officer, Division of Finance

3. Approval of Human Resources Monthly Report
Presented by: Dr. Tekshia M. Ward-Smith, Chief Human Resources Officer,
Division of Human Resources

4. Purchase of Multicultural Libraries for Schools Serving English Learners (ELs)
Presented by: Dr. Kathleen S. Howe, Deputy Superintendent, Division of Curriculum
& Instruction

5. Math Science Partnership (MSP) Grant Reimbursement to Georgia Tech Research
Presented by: Dr. Kathleen S. Howe, Deputy Superintendent, Division of Curriculum
& Instruction

6. Chamblee High School Technology Package
Presented by: Mr. Gary L. Brantley, Chief Information Officer, Division of Management
Information Systems

7. Martin Luther King High School Renovation Technology Package
Presented by: Mr. Gary L. Brantley, Chief Information Officer, Division of Management
Information Systems

8. Instructional Data Management System (IDMS)
Presented by: Mr. Gary L. Brantley, Chief Information Officer, Division of Management
Information Systems

9. Wireless Access for all Schools (Placeholder)
Presented by: Mr. Gary L. Brantley, Chief Information Officer, Division of Management
Information Systems

10.New Bus Title Transfer
Presented by: Mr. Stephen M. Wilkins, Chief Operations Officer, Division of Operations

11.Kingsley Charter Elementary School Sports Court Donation Approval
Presented by: Mr. Stephen M. Wilkins, Chief Operations Officer, Division of Operations

12.Arabia Mountain Green Cleaning Program Service Contract Award
Presented by: Mr. Stephen M. Wilkins, Chief Operations Officer, Division of Operations

13.CMAQ Georgia Diesel Retrofit Project
Presented by: Mr. Stephen M. Wilkins, Chief Operations Officer, Division of Operations

14.Approval of Bread Products, Bid #13-23
Presented by: Mr. Stephen M. Wilkins, Chief Operations Officer, Division of Operations

15.Approval of Sanitation Services & Materials Award, Bid #13-20
Presented by: Mr. Stephen M. Wilkins, Chief Operations Officer, Division of Operations

I. OTHER\BOARD COMMENTS (2 minutes each)


1. School Organization Community Meeting, 6:30pm, Tuesday, January 15, 2012[sic: 2013], Tucker High School, 5036 LaVista Road, Tucker

2. School Organization Community Meeting, 6:30pm, Wednesday, January 16, 2013, Dunwoody High School, 5035 Vermack Road, Dunwoody

3. School Organization Community Meeting, 6:30pm, Thursday, January 17, 2013, Auditorium, Robert R. Freeman Administrative & Instructional Complex, 1701 Mountain Industrial Boulevard, Stone Mountain

4. Schools & Administrative Offices Closed ~ Monday, January 21, 2012[sic: 2013] ~ Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Holiday

5. DeKalb NAACP 11th Annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Parade and Rally, 1:00pm, Monday, January 21, 2012 [sic: 2013] ~ Rally at Martin Luther King, Jr. High School, 3991 Snapfinger Road, Lithonia (for additional details, call 404.371.1490)

6. DeKalb Board of Education Called Meeting, 2:30pm, Wednesday, January 23, 2013, J. David Williamson Board Room, Robert R. Freeman Administrative & Instructional Complex, 1701 Mountain Industrial Boulevard, Stone Mountain


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44 Responses to Tune in to the board business meeting tonight: Jan. 14 at 6pm

  1. Of course, there’s one item missing from the calendar:

    The State Board of Education has called a meeting for January 17, 2013 at 1 PM pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 20-2-73. This statute, which is pasted in its entirety below, spells out the procedures that will be followed.

    The hearing will be open to the public and it will be in Room 2070 on the 20th Floor of the East Tower Sloppy Floyd Building. The public is invited to attend but there will not be an opportunity for public comment at the hearing. If you would like to provide a statement for the State Board to consider, you can email it to either Justin Pauly at jpauly@gadoe.org or Brenda Turner at brturner@doe.k12.ga.us.

    At the hearing, the State Board members will hear evidence as to whether the State Board should recommend to the Governor that he suspend the DeKalb School Board. After the hearing, the State Board will make its recommendation to Governor Deal. Governor Deal then has the discretion to accept or reject the Board’s recommendation. If the Governor chooses to suspend the Board, by law every member of the Board would have to be relieved of responsibility. The Governor would have the power to appoint new Board members.

    [Reposted from Scott Holcomb’s blog]

  2. Again, contact members of the State Board of Education (click here). If you would like to provide a statement for the State Board to consider, you can email it to either Justin Pauly at jpauly@gadoe.org or Brenda Turner at brturner@doe.k12.ga.us.

    If you would like to email the entire state board, here are their addresses as a group for you to copy and paste:

    lzechmann@gmail.com, eragsdale2@doe.k12.ga.us, hrice@doe.k12.ga.us, disrael@doe.k12.ga.us, kmason@doe.k12.ga.us, bahampton@doe.k12.ga.us, mroyal@doe.k12.ga.us, wbarrs@doe.k12.ga.us, lwinter@doe.k12.ga.us, bburdette@doe.k12.ga.us, glewis@doe.k12.ga.us, arice@doe.k12.ga.us, mmurray@doe.k12.ga.us, state.superintendent@doe.k12.ga.us

  3. Tired Mom says:

    Has anyone gone to one of the School Organization Community Meetings yet?

  4. hopespringseternal says:

    So… you took the time in posting the agenda on this blog to correct errors. Appreciate it. Publishing agendas prepared like this might not be an indictable offense, but this just speaks to a condition which inspires no confidence that anything can be done right, big or small. It’s like I tell my kids — by the time I approach you with a serious conversation, I do so because of a pattern of behavior. Not because of how innocent you were with one incident in a given hour on yesterday afternoon. In other words, you’re so tone deaf that we have to have the “serious” talk. You know, the one with accompanying consequences. Get the point?

  5. Please watch our video about the wireless initiative and call to action for this Thursday at 1 p.m., state BOE hearing:


  6. So far, they have postponed letting us know who the ‘leadership team’ is and they have postponed electing a chair and vice-chair. Now they are postponing setting their calendar of meetings. Productive, eh?

  7. They just voted to adopt the calendar of monthly business meetings only. Will revisit the rest in a Committee of the Whole meeting.

  8. And now comes the Super, with no official report.

  9. Consent agenda approved and…. adjourn! 40 minutes! But they are returning to Executive Session to hash out whatever they’re hashing out…

  10. Embarrassed Employee says:

    What did I miss….went to do homework and now old meeting is on?????

  11. DeKalb BOE for dummies says:

    I am guessing that they realize that the writing is on the wall. Please someone, take notes at the hearing Thursday. Hopefully, we will have a new board by Monday and can start cutting the fat at the palace by the end of the school year.

  12. Poster says says:

    How do you think a new school board can cut the fat at the palace? Isn’t that the whole deal with SACS? The School Board interfering with the school system? All a bunch of B.S. if you ask me

  13. howdy1942 says:

    A new board can remove the superintendent and replace her. The interim superintendent or the new superintendent can reduce the size of the administration. Also, the very fact that during her year and a half as superintendent, Atkinson has failed to take even the most basic actions to address the concerns SACS voiced during the reign of Ramona Tyson. She has had more than adequate time to make some start that would at least be worthy of some mention by SACS. That hasn’t happened. Seems to me like that is more than sufficient to find a “just cause” in removing her from office.

    There really was little need for this Board to meet tonight. My hope is that this Board has met for its last time. In some sense, I feel sorry for this Board. It must not be very comforting or encouraging to have descended so far and to have alienated so many people. It must be among the very bottom tier of school boards in the nation. Hopefully, the Governor will put you out of your misery soon.

  14. There’s always the ‘breakaway’ solution…. it seems to be gaining momentum.

    Good Idea Or Not? A Dunwoody-Chamblee-Brookhaven School System

    Actually, not a bad idea. Teachers do this all the time — if you are capable of managing your own work and moving ahead independently, then the teacher will likely let you – as it benefits you as a ‘student’ (or in this case, community) as well as gives the teacher more time and attention to give the remaining students.

  15. Along with that, it now appears that there are rumblings of yet another new city in DeKalb:

    Leaders Offer Conflicting Views at Second Cityhood Forum

    FWIW, all across the US, the most successful school systems are those funded and managed by small to medium cities. We think this is a very good direction for DeKalb and for our schools.

  16. bettyandveronica1 says:

    Just seems to me the current administration/board is following a growing national trend of denying the existence of a problem. Deny, Deny, Deny. Just blustering that the other person is wrong. (Think Gene Walkers inept comments: “There is not wrongdoing here, if you know of any please let us know”)
    I don’t think they will be removed. I also don’t think she will go…she knows the players at SACS. They obviously haven’t found any issue with her. I hope to heck I am wrong but absolutely nothing surprises me any more.

  17. bettyandveronica1 says:

    From the Crossroads news.com 1/11 regarding a meeting with DeKalb Delegation:
    …four of the five-member Senate delegation – Emmanuel Jones, Gail Davenport, Steve Henson and Jason Carter – were in attendance. Sen. Ronald Ramsey, the DeKalb School District’s chief legal officer, recused himself.

    (Jason)Carter said he’s no fan of SACS but said some issues were valid. He wanted to know how “things got to this point.”
    Responding to Carter’s question, Orson said that he is new to the board but is aware of some of the things highlighted.
    “There was a perception of divisive attitudes and personal agendas of people no longer on the board,” he said.
    Cunningham, who has served for seven years, said he’s seen the governance style evolve. He suggested that SACS tries to “micromanage” board operations but agreed that members need to improve their communication with each other and with the public.
    “We as a board are evolving our collective mind on how we are going to approach [this crisis],” Walker said before delivering a prepared statement. “We are going to do whatever is necessary to maintain our accreditation and get off probation.”
    Walker said he accepted Jones’ invitation to reassure the Legislature and the DeKalb community that “we are working closely with SACS on the issues raised in its report on the DeKalb County School District.”
    But he took issue with SACS’ charge that the district has mismanaged funds for 10 years even though the agency renewed DeKalb’s accreditation in 2007.
    “We are perplexed by this,” Walker said….http://crossroadsnews.com/bookmark/21387255

    So to sum it up from the board’s perspective…it is all just due to personality conflicts, a miscommunication and the need for evolution of “our collective mind” . These people are idiots and the DeKalb Delegation should be ashamed if they believed any of this garbage.

  18. howdy1942 says:

    Now is not the time to take this step. We have 11 months to address the issues cited by SACS and we should not get sidetracked on this issue. Breaking apart the Dekalb County School System would take action by the legislature, a vote by the people, and probably a long court battle.

    Second, removing the taxes paid by these three areas from the Dekalb County School System would be devastating and significantly complicate the funding for the existing school system. All of us in Dekalb County – North, Central, and South need to focus on resolving the issues before us and prevent the loss of our accreditation. I care about the education for all children in our County and don’t support casting any of them overboard. This School Board and the administration has been terrible, but the price for that should not be exacted on our children. I am hopeful that the people who elected school board members such as Cunningham, Copelin-Wood, and Walker will, through this experience, understand the damage they have caused to our children. That is the sad part of this whole situation – the children who live in those communities have suffered the most from the conduct of the very people these communicates elected.

    While restructuring the school system may be good in the long term, let’s focus on the critical issues that we have before us.

  19. educator90 says:

    The children have been hurt for a long time. The voters of Cunningham, Copelin-Wood and Walker have not shown that they are wanting a change and aren’t demanding better in their schools.

    I continue to pray that the board-all of the board-even those just voted in and Nancy-are all let go. New people are put in and they fire EVERY SINGLE PERSON in the Palace. Unless we get rid of everyone in the palace, having a new school board will have little difference on the education our children receive. Too many have shown for too long that they are incompetent. Those that may be competent have been silent for too long and allowed this to go, so in my eyes they are just as guilty.

    Our teachers need to have their step raises and pay to where it should be. The administration of the district need to be slim and lean. Focus of teachers should be educating our children and not on collecting data that they don’t have the time to use and most likely if they are any good at their job don’t really need.

    I realize that removing the board could lower my property value, but I really don’t care about that. I am already underwater, can’t send my child to my home school and want the education of those children in our school to improve. Sometimes we have to have things get worse before they can get better. The shenanigans that have gone on have gone on for far too long and they are not going to stop if the board remains in place. Too many on the board have shown their true color and it’s not educating our children.

  20. howdy1942 says:

    Educator90 – you are right! The only thing that could hurt our property values more is if we do, in fact, lose our accreditation. We urgently need to downsize the administration, especially at the higher level. And we need to take that money and reward our teachers – based on performance. Teachers and principals at schools showing improvements in performance improvement need to be rewarded. Others need to be developed and, if incremental performance is not seen, placed on warning.

    I hope and trust that Walker, Copelin-Wood, and Cunningham will not be returned to the school board after they have been removed. If the people in those communities do so, then I would strongly support steps that would separate the rest of the school system from them. But from what I read, those systems are already shrinking relative to the rest of Dekalb so hopefully their return is becoming more unlikely. Womack, Bowen, Redovian, Zepora Roberts, and McChesney are gone. The voters in those districts spoke loudly and now it is time for the remaining districts to make changes.

    Getting at the palace would sharply eliminate any “friends and family” concerns. I’m not talking about finding other positions for them – I’m talking about them being gone! We need to bring in a strong superintendent – and probably pay him/her more than we are paying Atkinson. The selection process need to reflect integrity and the chosen candidate needs the unanimous support of the new board. The process used in the selection of Atkinson was a sad comedy of errors.

    On a more positive note, I think that if we can get a new board, a new superintendent, and show some measurable strides to SACS, then our schools will get better and our property values once again increase.

  21. thedeal2 says:

    Anyone hearing from the Tucker High School meeting tonight?

  22. educator90 says:

    We will lose our accreditation if the state does not remove the board. The board has shown that they are not competent to do what is right.

    Having worked in the South End of DeKalb, I do not trust that they understand how bad these Walker, Copelin-Wood, and Cunningham are. You need to understand the power of Eddie Long and his church. If he says that people should vote for these people, his followers will do as he says. The same with other influential pastors on the South side of DeKalb. Ame with 100 million black men organization. Look at the landslide that our CEO won with. He wanted to spend a million dollars on a soap box derby, and he was supported head and shoulders above the other two gentlemen that ran, and received an huge majority of the vote.

    I don’t care about the value of my home!!!!! I really don’t!!!! Without better educated children our society is not going to survive the future.

    I don’t believe in giving teachers raises based on “performance.” Having worked in poor schools where parents could care less about their children and their education, should a teacher who is in that situation and busting her rear end to help her students want to learn and they show little progress for any number of reasons including not having electricity, a parent is in jail, not having food in the house, living in roach infested conditions, and other things that the average person who lives in central/north DeKalb has little knowledge or understanding?

    Our teachers have been screwed for far too long. We have lost many of the best seasoned teachers because of getting paid less and less, year after year and being required to do more and more paperwork and not being able to actually teach children. Teacher moral is too low. Teachers are trying to decide do they stay in DeKalb, look for work in another county, or change careers all together. As a former teacher, you don’t become a “good” teacher until at least 5 to 8 years into your career, and that is if other teachers, principals, and personnel are willing to mentor you and take you under their wing. DeKalb can’t afford too many young unseasoned teachers, especially in schools that already have discipline issues.. Those kids will eat those teachers and spit them out in the first few weeks of school. I’ve watched it happen too many times to young teachers.

    Also the idea of building 900 seat schools in elementary schools has me questioning if DeKalb is the district for me. I like our small neighborhood schools. Put the effort into updating these schools. Stop thinking of wasting money by knocking down schools that have recently had additions and are more up to date or are influential neighborhoods where parents scream the loudest. Also stop the special schools. Focus on providing EVERY child an education that they will want to learn and be excited about coming to school.

    Having talked to a middle school teacher whose students already hate school and many will probably not graduate. These kids are below grade level. They are in over crowded classrooms where they can’t get the help that they need, and most likely should have never been passed on to another grade at an earlier age. We need to hold EVERY child to a higher standard. I remember my first year in DeKalb (2007) and the no zero policy-no grade lower than a 70 meeting. I was the only teacher to speak up and tell Dr. Simpson what I thought about these policies and how they were hurting the children of DeKalb, and that I expected better policies for improving student achievement. A child isn’t going to care about their grade if they know that a teacher can’t fail them, even when they have paperwork of the wazoo to prove that the child is not up to snuff.

    Also the focus needs to be on the progress that children are making. We cannot expect a child barely reading on a 2nd grade level in 4th or 5th grade to do 4th or 5th grade work. We need to ask ourselves, how the heck the child made it so far and what are we going to do to actually help them and not just do triage to get them by another year.

    You see, the fact that ANY parent would allow their child to not fail when no effort was put forth is disturbing, and that the school district has supported these parents is even more disturbing. I know adults who are illiterate and I know how hard their lives have been. I also know that there are children in the county who are illiterate and no one is helping them. No one really cares. You see, accreditation is great, but we are failing too many kids with it, and if losing accreditation is the only way that we can get ALL children a better education and make them up to snuff with others in the world/US than they can take it tomorrow as far as I am concerned.

    I fear that not until accreditation is taken away that the followers of many in power in DeKalb won’t have to wake up, because it will be too easy to make excuses of why we need to keep doing things the way that they are and have always been done.

  23. One really big problem, IMHO, is that we simply do not have enough classroom teachers anymore. Very few people take the time to really crunch the numbers (except Nancy, but even she hasn’t done this one…) When you weed out all of the employees who are not classroom teachers, then you find that the actual number of ordinary, core classroom teachers is quite low. In fact – below is a tally for 2011:

    16,206 total employees on roster minus 1246 subs =
    14,960 employees of which
    8,501 are some kind of teacher — and of those:
    209 are vocational teachers
    1,128 are some kind of special ed teacher
    798 are special ed parapros/asst teachers
    36 are psych-ed parapros
    9 are adaptive PE teachers
    84 are special ed pre-school paras
    365 are regular ed parapros
    109 are lottery-funded pre-school paras
    115 are lottery-funded pre-k teachers
    39 are ‘other instructional’ (?)
    560 are ‘instructional specialists’ (art, music, pe?)
    71 are gifted instruction
    194 are ESOL (English language learners)
    110 are early intervention/EIP

    LEAVING 4,674 regular ed classroom teachers out of the 14,960 total employees (not including substitute teachers)

    Is it no wonder that class sizes are ridiculously high, results are still very poor and teacher morale is at an all time low?

    Download the EXCEL spreadsheet that we worked from at the link below:

  24. Speaking of Nancy — seems the WSJ has joined the fray… they’re not too keen on SACS either – and even complain that they focus too much on ‘process’ (say, didn’t I read that in Nancy’s blog post?)


    The Wall Street Journal
    The Rise of the Accreditor as Big Man on Campus

    Accreditors are supposed to protect students and taxpayers by ensuring that federal aid flows only to schools with “educational quality.” But accreditors increasingly interfere in institutional decision-making and use their bully authority to tie the hands of colleges and universities.

    For decades, these accreditors have effectively guarded the status quo, focusing on process and resources rather than on educational excellence.

  25. Now here’s a really interesting tidbit. At the GA Open Gov website, where we download the files that tell us the salaries and contracts, the state now produces the list of salaries for charter schools. Leadership Prep Academy (housed at New Birth Church) does not have a report listed at the state’s website. However, Destiny Academy (in a former DCSS elementary school now owned by New Birth) does.

    Below are the salary costs and expenses for Destiny (about 100 students) for 2012:

    ASKARI,BADIA S GRADES 9-12 TEACHER $45,000.00 $0.00
    DEPASS,MARY T GRADES 9-12 TEACHER $27,500.00 $0.00
    DIXON,DARYL D GRADES 9-12 TEACHER $39,000.00 $0.00
    GUNN,FAYE P GRADES 9-12 TEACHER $39,700.00 $0.00
    HYPOLITE,KAREN L GRADES 9-12 TEACHER $44,000.00 $0.00
    JAKES,BEN C SUPERINTENDENT $100,100.00 $5,944.43

    MITCHELL,FRED A GRADES 9-12 TEACHER $42,500.00 $1,200.00
    WHYTE,DONALDO R ESOL TEACHER $29,750.00 $0.00
    WOODS,HELAINE L GRADES 9-12 TEACHER $45,840.00 $0.00
    WRIGHT,KRISTIE L GRADES 9-12 TEACHER $39,000.00 $800.00



    Who is this Ben Jakes? Why is he referred to as the “Superintendent” of Destiny? Destiny HAS a principal paid over $85,000 – Clarence Callaway (retired DCSS administrator and husband of Frankie Callaway, also a retired DCSS administrator who is employed at Leadership Prep). Why does he make over half the salary of the actual superintendent (in his TWO combined salaries)?

    ATKINSON,CHERYL L H SUPERINTENDENT $241,694.11 $8,068.15

  26. So, as you can see, there are too many people sucking money from the cracks and crevices of this school system, leaving the teachers and their students high and dry. THIS is what the board SHOULD care about. They should be doing everything in their power to make the super dig deep and make cuts everywhere possible that is not directly in the schoolhouse and consolidate as many small schools and specialty programs as possible (as we suggested on this blog and the old DSW when Atkinson was first hired — to no avail.)

  27. And here are those teacher numbers for 2012:

    17,017 total employees on roster minus 1200 subs = 15,817 employees of which
    8500 are labeled as some kind of teacher — and of those:
    196 are vocational teachers
    1095 are some kind of special ed teacher
    773 are special ed parapros/asst teachers
    42 are psych-ed parapros
    7 are adaptive PE teachers
    86 are special ed pre-school paras
    306 are regular ed parapros
    104 are lottery-funded pre-school paras
    104 are lottery-funded pre-k teachers
    39 are ‘other instructional’ (?)
    607 are ‘instructional specialists’ (art, music, pe?)
    75 are gifted instruction
    216 are ESOL (English language learners)
    104 are early intervention/EIP
    24 are psych-ed teachers
    5 – GNETS
    9 literacy coaches
    41 MS exploratory teachers
    45 Military science teachers
    8 RVI

    LEAVING 4,614 regular ed classroom teachers

    Download the 2012 teacher salary report file here:

    The full 2012 salary report can be found here:

  28. And one last thing:

    The total spent on ALL salaries for 2012 was:

    Of that — The total spent on salaries for those 8500 employees labeled teachers:

  29. Other salaries from the 2012 report:

    Security officers: $8,682,497.94
    Non-schoolhouse secretaries: $5,542,682.39
    (Schoolhouse secretaries: $6,584,645.63)
    Central support clerks: $1,832,113.75
    Gen admin sec/clerks: $1,566,248.35
    Plant operations sec/clerks: $508,452.67
    Foodservice workers: $16,711,803.73 (988 employees with this title, low salaries)
    “Miscellaneous Activities”: $6,711,336.95
    Maintenance personnel: $7,967,454.81 (192 employees with this title)
    IS (support) personnel: $8,041,969.29
    Instructional supervisors: $10,366,618.36 (139 of these)
    Information services : $3,248,104.01
    Assistant principals: $20,489,654.06 (273 of these)
    Bus drivers: $24,110,404.33
    Construction managers: $333,647.85 (only 4 of them!)
    Directors: $1,421,954.17 (14 of them PLUS the HR director: $133,805.96)
    Parent coordinators: $2,464,434.30
    HR: $1,739,066.00
    “Other” transportation: $3,342,799.66
    Planning dept: $465,522.31
    Plant operations mgrs: $1,547,191.00
    Custodial personnel: $19,793,497.37
    Transportation dept (includes 11 clerks): $3,261,336.47
    Technology specialists: $3,977,842.47
    Substitute teachers: $7,982,136.28
    Public relations*: $153,717.68
    (*This department was totally cut in the budget cuts and is counted in the budget as $0. In addition to these salaries, there are people working on contracts like Jeff Dickerson for large sums of money. Not sure which budget they are being paid from.)

    None of the above would really be considered Central Office – except maybe HR. Will tally those numbers later.

  30. dcssfrustratedparent says:

    I am confused by your last paragraph/sentence “None of the above would really be considered Central Office”
    Public relations*: $153,717.68
    Directors: $1,421,954.17 (14 of them PLUS the HR director: $133,805.96)
    Non-schoolhouse secretaries: $5,542,682.39
    all seem to me to be Central Office staff or in my mind “non student facing” but obviously I could just not really understand the categories.

  31. Leo says:

    It’s funny to me that there are still people who think that we don’t have poverty in the northern part of the county. Quite the contrary. One of Dekalb’s most impoverished schools is in the new city of Brookhaven. Woodward Elem. reports 99% free and reduced lunch. Even schools that are considered “rich” by some, like Ashford Park, have 39% free and reduced lunch. it’s not like everyone is rolling around in the millions on this side of town. Consequently, it’s similarly unfair to suggest that creating a school district that includes only the North part of the county will decimate the remainder of the school system. In fact, many of our schools in other parts of the county are Title I schools which already receive more financial assistance than those that are not Title I schools. There are wealthy tax areas on the South side too. I think that with a lot of digging, you’d find that the schools which remain in DCSD should this ever happen would have adequate resources so long as Central Office change would actually occur (and I’m not just talking about personnel, I’m talking about how the entire ship is run).

  32. DeKalb Inside Out says:

    DeKalb BOE elections next year – No more at large super districts (Speaks and Walker). Walker will run against Cunningham. I expect Cunningham to win despite Walker’s New Birth backing. Not sure who Speaks would run against if she runs at all.

  33. concernedmom30329 says:

    You keep saying next year, like it is around the corner. It isn’t. Elections will be in late Summer 2014 but the newly elected members won’t be seated until January 2015 almost exactly two years from now.
    Change must come sooner than that.

  34. True DCSS parent. I missed those (it was late – and I’m not a professional…) Feel free to download the file and take a look. The categories you mention would be considered CO, along with quite a few more – area supers, super, board of ed, etc. etc… I’ll try to work on it some more… unless you’d like to pick up the ball. Anyone is welcome to download the files and publish what you discern from them…

    Again –

    The full 2012 salary report can be found here:

  35. True Leo. The north end of the county also has far, far more apartment dwellers – with school-aged children. They tend to have higher rates of single-parent, low-income and transient – all issues that pose challenges for schools.

  36. Really? says:

    And you think it coincidental that Brookhaven area schools next door in to each other have such very different demographics? Attendance lines in that area including cross keys corridor are gerrymandered to fit the “needs” and comfort of the community.

  37. SO — My feeble attempt to label what I think we all may consider Central Office Staff has come up with a total cost for CO of $40,845,770.30

    I didn’t include security. I assume they are mostly school based, however, certainly ‘some’ can be applied to CO. Same with the simple label ‘secretary’ – it’s too hard to tell where they work so I didn’t include them. Same for “other transportation” and “misc activities”. Who knows? The file I used is uploaded here. Check over my list and see if you agree or if I have some people misidentified.


  38. DeKalb Inside Out says:

    I was looking on the bright side. “Next Summer (2014)”, Jay and Dr Walker will be fighting for the same seat. May I suggest Thunderdome?

  39. dekalbite2 says:

    @ dekalbschoolwatch
    Instructional supervisors: $10,366,618.36 (139 of these)

    Absolutely are Central Office. These are the Coordinator positions. They recommend policy and procedure for the teaching of various subjects and programs. They are not evaluated by the principals in the schoolhouse. Rather they report to other Central Office personnel. Who do you think sits in meetings all day at the Central Office – numerous Coordinators are always present. So add another $10,000,000 to that $40,000,000 if you haven’t included these folks.

    Directors are a step above Coordinators and a step above principals so they are not part of the schoolhouse hierarchy. They are also part of the Central Office.

    Before Hallford, DeKalb used to have only a handful of Coordinators (Instructional Supervisors). For example, there was a K-12 Language Arts Coordinator (she also oversaw ESOL for the county), a K-12 Social Studies Coordinator, a K-12 Math Coordinator, and a K-12 Science Coordinator. These four employees handled the content areas for DeKalb Schools.

    Many of those non-schoolhouse secretaries sit in the Central Office and serve the Central Office personnel so many of those salaries should be considered Central Office as well.

  40. psdad says:

    @ Really your comment “And you think it coincidental that Brookhaven area schools next door in to each other have such very different demographics?”

    I don’t know the history of how attendance lines have been established or changed in that area so maybe you can fill us in on what you perceive as the motivation for this gerrymandering and how it “serves the needs and comfort of the community”.

    I did go back and review the change in the demographic make-up of Lakeside, Chamblee, and Cross Keys over the 2001 to 2011 period (10 years), so for the benefit of the board I’ll provide some background data:
    At Lakeside, Chamblee, and Cross Keys respectively:
    The change in “White” student body was -3%, -32%, -77%
    The change in “African American” student body was 23%, 33%, -65%
    The change in “Asian” student body was -19%, 32%,-41%
    The change in “Hispanic” student body was 183%, 262%, and 65%

    The data represents change in total number of students for each demographic category (NOT change in % of total). Read into this any way you want, but unless you are suggesting that Chamblee has found a way to gerrymander attendance lines so as to ring fence the Asian community into its student body while displacing an equal number of white students, it’s hard to support a trend toward “comfort based” gerrymandering. If anything, the data appears to suggest that the attendance lines are gerrymandered to benefit one historically disadvantaged class at the expense of another.

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