The second public forum this week regarding Cobb’s elementary school redistricting proposal will be held tonight at beginning at 6:30 p.m.
The first was held Tuesday evening at Pebblebrook High. was the only Smyrna area school affected by last night’s gathering. See here for South Cobb Patch’s coverage of the public forum for Phase 1 schools, which will be affected by the process beginning in August.
Phase 2 schools, which won’t be affected until August 2013, will be discussed this evening and those schools include , , , , Harmony Leland, , LaBelle, , Milford, , and .
It has been recommended that Brown and Fitzhugh Lee H.A.V.E.N. Academy in Smyrna be closed. Brown students would attend the new Smyrna elementary school set to open in 2013. Meanwhile, , currently at 4400 West Atlanta Road, would shift its students four miles away to Brown while its current campus would be put up for sale.
The alternative redistricting maps, which were released by the Cobb County School District last week, as well as data related to those alternative maps will be discussed this evening. See here for images of the proposed closures and redistricting map.
Smyrna-Vinings Patch will be covering tonight’s meeting live as there’s expected to be much voiced from concerned parents from schools such as King Springs, Nickajack, Harmony Leland and Brown.
The CCSD is seeking community input regarding the redistricting options during this Round 2. Round 3, the presentation of a single draft plan, is slated for November and December.
Round 4, which is when the school closure hearing will be held and the recommended redistricting plan will be presented to the board, is scheduled for January 2012. The school board is expected to vote on the plan in February.
“It’s still early in the process, as we will continue to go through two more rounds,” Doug Shepard, CCSD's chief SPLOST administrative officer, said Tuesday night. “In many ways, this is the start of a conversation.”
Some of the more recent comments left there include:
Brian | King Springs
Respectfully, I want to thank you for taking the time to review our comments. We live in KS72, and like many other concerned parents in the area, Zoning Option B brings forth a major objection. Zoning Option B creates a disappointing blow to the significant momentum and support that’s been poured into King Springs over the past several years. I’m a firm believer that the faculty and staff have benefited directly from the parental involvement coming from KS72; it has created a positive viral effect that touches the broader community, and most importantly, has nurtured a marked improvement in the learning environment for our Children. Please, vote for zoning Option A so the positive momentum can continue. Our Children depend on it. Thank you for the consideration!
Smyrna Resident | Belmont Hills
Plan A! Plan A! Rezone all those near the revitalized downtown Smyrna area to New Smyrna. Plan B makes no sense at all where you draw the lines on Bank Street and Sanford....send all those up to South Cobb Drive that live in the Cheney Woods neighborhood to New Smyrna. The demographic that lives in this area would love to send their children to public school vs. private school. The house values in that area would increase as well as those who would want to move to Smyrna for the improved school district.
Jennifer Laub | Brown
I live behind Brown Elementary School. I am upset about its closing, and even more upset about the proposed relocation of Fitzhugh Lee to that campus. Mainstream elementary school children are way different than 6th through 12th grade adolescents who have been sent to an alternative school for behavioral reasons. This relocation will bring a negative element to our neighborhood and lower home values in Smyrna Heights even more! What's wrong with Fitzhugh Lee's current campus? Why can't SPLOST funds be used to improve their current location if needed? Why the relocation? Is it just because Brown's campus needs to be used for educational purposes and there are no other proposals? Well, I've got a better idea. If Brown Elementary must close, then let's use that campus for continuing and enrichment education in arts, music, theater, and digital media. I'm an advocate of lifelong education. Cobb County as far as I know does not offer much or anything in the way of adult continuing education. The Smyrna Community Center offers a variety of sports and exercise classes for adults, but where's the opportunity for learning and enrichment in the areas of art, theater, music, language, literature studies, and technology? Many school districts in California (where I lived previously) had adult education offerings, and I miss it. I took a variety of classes such as mosaics, line dancing, Spanish, Japanese, etc. Due to testing pressures, time constraints, and tight budgets, I understand that arts are being squeezed out of our children's education at all levels. However, there can and should be a place for arts in public education. We just need to find alternative and creative ways to provide it. A Cobb County Community Arts Enrichment Center on Brown Elementary's former campus could offer after-school classes for children and evening classes for working adults (and daytime classes for retired seniors). The campus could also offer daytime arts camps for children of all ages during the summers. If reasonable fees are charged, I'm sure there would be great interest!
ECS | King Springs
Yesterday I was picking up my child from ASP at King Springs. While I was standing there, a large group of KSE staff and parents were standing around talking about the maps. I heard a staff member say that King Valley reformed KSE and they would lose a great deal of parent resource and involvement and for the most part the group agreed. I think KSE and Nickajack are both great schools. However, in plan b, you will be removing a large part of KSE resources (monetary and human) from several established neighborhoods who would be shifting to Nickajack. Nickajack is a newer and strong school. Plan B would reinforce and create a stronger school for Nickajack, while diminishing KSE. Plan A is a more balanced plan for both schools.
Keeneland Farms | King Springs
Please explain to me why students from Keeneland Farms who are currently attending King Springs are being redistricted to Nickajack. Students in Keeneland Farms would have to travel twice as far to get to Nickajack than they would to get to King Springs. Keeneland Farms students could walk to King Springs but that is not feasible if they are redistricted to Nickajack. This is all about Keeneland Farms and promoting King Springs by redistricting away minority students. CCSD would like for us to think that it is considering zoning away King Valley students so that it appears unbiased, but it has no plans to do that - I mean, seriously. CCSD wants to incite King Valley parents so that it garners support for its upcoming selection of Plan A (redistricting Keeneland Farms to Nickajack). CCSD will say that it heard many comments in favor of Plan A (mostly from King Valley residents) but heard far fewer comments in favor of Plan B, which should be coming from Keeneland Farms parents, but apparently they are not parentally involved enough to raise concerns about being redistricted away from a superior school to an inferior one, as I have seen very few if any posts in support of keeping Keeneland Farms students at King Springs. Everytihing is going according to CCSD's plans for Plan A.