NEWS FLASH: GLASS to hold press conference at Cross Keys today at 3pm

GLASS (Georgians for Local Area School Systems)

Highest Poverty Schools Neglected in Large DeKalb County School System

GLASSAtlanta, GA, February 22, 2014: Sunday, February 23rd at 3:00pm GLASS (Georgians for Local Area School Systems) will hold a press conference at Cross Keys High School in Brookhaven to address HR 486 and how it can help low-income communities receive the focus they need to be successful.

HR 486, the proposed amendment to the Georgia constitution to allow for the formation of municipal school systems, will hit the House floor next week. GLASS is advocating for passage asserting that it will help all communities in Georgia that want to increase their focus on public education.

Opposition to the Resolution has claimed that HR 486 is meant only to serve privileged communities. Cross Keys High School, located at 1626 North Druid Hills Road NE, Brookhaven, GA 30319, serves families in Chamblee, Doraville, and Brookhaven. Among neighboring attendance areas, Cross Keys’ schools have received the lowest level of capital investment under DeKalb governance being outpaced by neighboring areas by as much as 3-to-1 in dollars spent.

The attendance area of Cross Keys, stretching 10 miles along Buford Hwy, serves nearly 7,000 children. It includes Woodward Elementary in the City of Brookhaven, which at Title I rate of 99.5% (a federal measure of poverty) is the poorest elementary school in DeKalb County School District.

These high minority and high poverty schools have their needs lost in the shuffle of DeKalb politics and bureaucracy. The high school is the only one in DeKalb without an auditorium, features a crumbling, thirty year-old asphalt track and lacks many of the basic amenities found at neighboring schools. While the cities that serve Cross Keys have passed resolutions supporting HR 486, because of partisan politics, HR 486 may not pass the House and these schools will continue disparate treatment by DeKalb County School District.

GLASS invites all media outlets to learn more about Cross Keys, its struggles to meet its students needs under a disinterested school system, and how HR 486 would allow Cross Keys area children to reach their highest potential.

In attendance will be Representative Tom Taylor (author of HR 486), Brookhaven Council Members Joe Gebbia and Bates Mattison, Cross Keys Foundation President Kim Gokce, GLASS Board Members, and Cross Keys community members. Pending invitation response from: Rep. Mike Jacobs, Rep. Edward Lyndsey, Rep. Scott Holcomb, Senator Fran Millar, and former Chamblee City Council Member Brian Bates.

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14 Responses to NEWS FLASH: GLASS to hold press conference at Cross Keys today at 3pm

  1. ursokm16 says:

    Is GLASS a state-wide lobbying effort or solely focused on DeKalb County?

  2. GLASS (Georgians for Local Area School Systems) is definitely statewide — here’s their website >>

    Facebook Page >>

  3. For more info on HG486, read John Heneghan’s post and watch the video of the meeting here >>

    HR 486, the bill to create independent school systems in Georgia passes out of committee. Video of meeting.

  4. “The Independent School Bill is the best option for real choice…” ~ Senator Fran Millar

  5. ursokm16 says:

    Nancy Jester provided solutions to DeKalb’s situation. What Senator Millar describes as “the best solution” is more “the solution that can be chiseled in the fastest because we have the legislative power to take away from DeKalb.” There was a time the so-called “best option” was vouchers, then charter schools, then parent shut-downs…now new smaller systems that are only relevant in Democrat-led counties…yes–because they can only happen in new cities…does anyone really think they’ll be any new cities in Cobb or even Gwinnett after Peachtree Corners, the Gwinnett annex of Dunwoody? The legislation has disappeared from Statewide relevance and moved from longer, more judicious systemic solutions to panicked immediate solutions for a small number of places.

  6. midvaledad says:

    Anything Fran Millar supports I automatically assume is corrupt. He is as slimy as a quart of leeches.

  7. Ella says:

    Thanks for the information.

    I will always be interested in seeing Cross Keys get their fair share. It has never happened and until a bill such as this is past they will always be on the back burner to the DeKalb County School Board.

    Due to this property being the most valuable piece of property the DeKalb County School Board owning (2nd is the Briarcliff High School property) the school personnel have never wanted to spent too much on it. The kids who attend Cross Keys are not always the parents who complain also so the kids get overlooked and this is extremely sad.

    KIm said it best when he said that some board members in the past admit they see color and base their decisions on color. The colors they see are black and white and the gray kids that attend Cross Keys get the shaft. I could not agree more with his observations. Why are we as DeKalb County citizens allowing the school board to treat Cross Keys children this way? All kids are equal under the eyes of God. Color should never matter when it comes to a child’s education. Never.

  8. howdy1942 says:

    Is that Representative from Acworth correct – I’m almost certain that he was referring to Dekalb when he cited that one school system in the metro is spending 50.2% of State dollars in the classroom as compared to other systems that are spending 70% – is that correct? If so, I had no idea that Dekalb is that far out of line. That is just unacceptable and unconscious able.

    Stan Jester would be the most likely to know the percentage of State fund and the percentage of total funds that are focused on the classroom. I’m not sure exactly what the term “classroom” would entail, but my definition would be teachers, books, computers, and classroom facilities themselves. I am very suspicious of the extent to which we bus our kids and believe that some great inefficiencies could be achieved there. I am also suspicious of those activities, such as those “parent” centers and I have long been suspicious of the administration bloat that has been cited so often by so many.

    On a broader note, my assessment is that there is very little sympathy for Dekalb County, either its school system or its government. In fact, I sense that it is growing very frustrated with hearing about Dekalb County. Does anyone else come away with that same thought?

    I look forward to hearing your comments.

  9. Ella says:

    DeKalb County has put themselves in a bad situation.

    The racial issues from the north and south will not go away in the legislature or the school system. I am sad by this but I think it is the truth.

    I am supportive of the new bill if it will improve the quality of education of our children in DeKalb. Maybe some school systems have got too big.

    We do continue to spend too much money that is not spent in the classroom. Parent facilities are a good idea. However, too much money is being spent on them. This money could be spent on more social workers, counselors, and SST/RTI employees in the schools themselves.

    Way too much money is spent on salaries for county employees. I have always believe more of this money should be spent in the school verses out of the school.

  10. SURVEYS >>>

    School Climate Survey Deadline Extended

    In 2011, Georgia was the first state in the nation to include school climate as an early indicator in its accountability system, the College and Career Ready Performance Index (CCRPI). The School Climate Star Rating will be officially reported in the CCRPI and will be used as a diagnostic tool within the CCRPI to determine if a school is on the right path to school improvement.

    The Georgia Parent Survey will remain open through next Friday, February 28, 2014. CLICK HERE for the link to the Georgia Parent Survey. After you click on the link, a drop-down menu will appear. Use the drop-down menu to select DeKalb County and your school.


    DCSD Gifted Program Survey

    The DeKalb County School District wants your feedback regarding the district’s Gifted Program. This survey will be available online to all parents through March 10, 2014. To access the survey, CLICK HERE.


    DCSD and Flexibility Options

    During the past several weeks, the DeKalb County School District held several community engagement meetings to share the Georgia Flexibility Options, answer questions and receive feedback about the options. All Georgia school systems will be required to select one of the options in the coming months.

    The communities overwhelmingly requested the school district provide more information about “why” districts are being required to choose an option and “what” options are available to our district. Please follow the link provided below for more information about the committee, the process, the options and the timeline. After reviewing, please share your feedback by clicking on the “Submit Feedback” option from the web page.

  12. Stan Jester says:

    Good Morning Howdy1942.
    Most of the state and local funding goes into the General Fund or more commonly known as the General Operation Budget. Anything paid for by the General Fund could be state or local monies.

    I put together a graph of the change in spending since 1996 on administration, staff services and instruction over the last 18 years at DeKalb Schools. In the years leading up to the recession spending on General Admin increased by 150% and spending on Staff Services increased by almost 400%, while at the same time spending on teachers only increased by 50%.

    After the recession, the budget was balanced on the backs of teachers via furlough days, RIFs and extending class size waivers.

  13. From Mike Jacob’s email newsletter April 24, 2014 >>

    House Resolution 486 – The Georgia Constitution prohibits the creation of new city school systems. Existing city school systems such as Atlanta, Decatur and Marietta, are grandfathered to avoid this prohibition. HR 486 is constitutional amendment — requiring a two-thirds affirmative vote of the House and Senate — to enable the creation of independent municipal school systems in cities created on or after January 1, 2005. This would include Brookhaven, Dunwoody and Sandy Springs. It also would allow cities adjacent to cities created on or after that date, such as Chamblee and Doraville, to have their own school systems. HR 486 also would permit any combination of these cities to form a unified independent school district. Thus, it would enable a school system to be created across Brookhaven, Dunwoody, Chamblee and Doraville. This proposal will be a multi-year project because it requires a supermajority in order to pass.

  14. Also of local significance, I had the privilege of hosting “Cross Keys Day at the Capitol” this year. A group of outstanding Cross Keys High School seniors served as my pages on one of the busiest days of the legislative session. Click here for a photo of this excellent group of students. Because this year’s “Cross Keys Day at the Capitol” was a great success, I am going to repeat it every year.

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