Do school renovations make a difference?

DeKalb County school officials are about to being renovations at Cross Keys High School and several community members say it’s about time the district fixes the dilapidated school.

The building has graffiti, cracks and rust and broken windows. Improving the school will improve the community, some say.

This quote sums it up perfectly: “I feel like a vibrant community, which has a vibrant commercial life and a vibrant identity, also has a vibrant public school community.”

Drive around metro Atlanta and you’ll find other schools in conditions similar to Cross Keys. Within the same school district you can find schools in pristine condition and those that look run-down.

Growing and thriving communities often get the new schools or are the first to get renovations to make space for booming student enrollment. Families who live in other communities say their schools are neglected.

Can a school renovation improve a community? How have renovations gone at your local schools?

53 comments Add your comment

Cere

July 21st, 2009
9:02 am

I don’t drive around looking at schools much, but I would hate to think that there are other schools as deplorable as Cross Keys. For a look at some photos, visit the DeKalbSchoolWatch blog spot -
http://dekalbschoolwatch.blogspot.com/2009/07/why-is-cross-keys-still-in-limbo.html

I definitely think these (mostly Hispanic) students deserve much, much better.

Would renovating this blog make a difference?

July 21st, 2009
10:34 am

Yet another mail it in topic. Why not just introduce each daily blog with “What you are about to read will have little to no depth, so please blog away.”

Has anything ever come of this blog? Has anything a blogger brought up ever lead to a story on the AJC’s part, which then lead to a substantive change?

The sad thing is, readers don’t seem to care. Almost no one ever attempts to hold the AJC’s feet to the fire for how they report, or just as often, don’t report on education issues that should concern all.

Possibly, if this blog were inundated with comments that pointed out the shortcomings of the AJC’s education coverage for all the world to see, the AJC may feel some pressure to step up its coverage.

But if readers are content with substandard, agenda based reporting, and blog introductions that have less substance than your average Twitter post, what possible incentive does the AJC have to change?

Nero had his fiddle. We have this blog.

Seen it all

July 21st, 2009
10:39 am

Of course renovations and new schools help. They help a lot. I saw some pictures of Cross Keys High School. It looks like some place out of Honduras. Bananas anyone?

We all know that this school would never be in this condition if it were the school of the middle class and not the working class. Many books have been written on the disparity between educational resources and facilties between socioeconomic groups.

Would you want to go to a school like that? Would you want your children to go a school like that?

OldTeach

July 21st, 2009
11:08 am

Cross Keys High School is and has been for some time in deplorable condition. Compare it with any other high school in the county and it falls way short.
However, there was a study done some years ago -not exactly addressing this issue, but close.\
Students who were only provided books, a chalkboard, a good teacher, a library, and a bare classroom were pre and post tested and compared with students who had a new school with all the technology available and all the bells and whistles so popular in schools today. Guess who showed the most improvement after instruction ! The first group’s progress was significantly better.
Moral of the story: Learning can and does occur anywhere, but the disparity in Dekalb’s schools is abhorrent !

Name One

July 21st, 2009
11:16 am

LEED Certified schools cut down on absenteeism by students and staff and also lead to increased test scores. The natural light and improved air quality do wonders for learning. Cross Keys is a disgrace. DeKalb Superintendent Crawford Lewis and the Board of Education has pumped tens of millions into South DeKalb Schools, while ignoring crumbling schools in the Central and North sections of the county, like Cross Keys, Lakeside and Sequoyah.

Learn more about how a school should be built in the 21st century at:
http://www.buildgreenschools.org/ and http://www.greenschools.net/

Dr. John Trotter

July 21st, 2009
11:39 am

Personally, I think that Crawford Lewis and his DeKalb administration are driven so much by political factors. Yes, any careless observer knows that Cross Keys High School has been neglected for years. The school is very ethnic-oriented, and, unfortunately the people do not appear to feel politically empowered. This must change. If this physical facility was located where Stephenson High is now located, the parents of the community would be demanding that the DeKalb County Board of Education fire Superintendent Crawford Lewis (which, by the way, is a pretty good idea). At MACE, we think that Superintendent Lewis is a joke, a clown, and a candy ass superintendent. Hey, Lawyer Josey Alexander, are we clear enough for you? Crawford Lewis is a joke and a clown of a superintendent because of the deplorable Cross Keys High School situation and many other similar eyesores in the DeKalb County School System. He is a candy ass superintendent because he is evidently afraid to process a State-mandated grievance according to State Statute (O.C.G.A. 20-2-989.5 et seq.). Apparently there are other groups in Georgia and DeKalb County who have similarly low opinions of the DeKalb County School System’s “leadership” (the buck stops at the top with Crawford Lewis) because websites are springing up explicitly to protest the actions of the DeKalb County School System. I guess MACE is just prophetic in its analysis of the DeKalb County School System under the non-leadership of Crawford Lewis. (c) MACE, 2009.

Would renovating this blog make a difference?

July 21st, 2009
12:30 pm

DeKalb County is a prime example of where people have pointed out gross misdoings, yet the AJC has done nothing to bring them to light. While the AJC wants to look like a watchdog talking about cheating at Atherton, other media outlets are running stories of grade changing scandals at another schoos. Other sources are talking about the illegal shutting down of a hearing that was going to further expose large cheating scandal at yet another school.

Even though these stories would be much more enlightening, as they would expose the possibility that cheating is systemic, and may be even condoned, or at least covered up, at the highest levels, the AJC sits and twiddles its thumbs.

Unfortunately, most of the bloggers on here do so as well, putting no pressure on the AJC to change its substandard reporting practices.

Why do bloggers, who in general are probably more interested and informed on the issues, continue to let the AJC slide when it comes to their coverage on those issues?

Hobbs

July 21st, 2009
12:30 pm

Old Teach is right! St.Mtn middle school had not made AYP in 6 or 7 yrs. They had a new school built 3 yrs ago and are just now making AYP. Yes, Cross Keys is a bad, but its not the buliding that is learning, its the people inside. Dekalb needs to make sure that the school is SAFE & Functional. Since the school system gets most of funds from county taxes, maybe they get the police to patrol more often to keep the school from being defaced.

Would renovating this blog make a difference?

July 21st, 2009
12:36 pm

DeKalb County is a prime example of where people have pointed out gross misdoings, yet the AJC has done nothing to bring them to light.

While the AJC wants to look like a watchdog talking about cheating at Atherton, other media outlets are running stories of grade changing scandals at another schools. Other sources are talking about the illegal shutting down of a hearing that was going to further expose large cheating scandal at yet another school.

Even though these stories would be much more enlightening, as they would expose the possibility that cheating is systemic, and may be even condoned, or at least covered up, at the highest levels, the AJC sits and twiddles its thumbs.

Unfortunately, most of the bloggers on here do so as well, putting no pressure on the AJC to change its substandard reporting practices.

Why do bloggers, who in general are probably more interested and informed on the issues, continue to let the AJC slide when it comes to their coverage on those issues?

Beth

July 21st, 2009
2:10 pm

It is about time that DeKalb county do something about this school. No child deserves to be in these surroundings. Just look at some of the plush newly built schools in the county. I think that they could have spent a little less on fancy extras in some areas so that this school could have been at the very least safe. I was inside this building two years ago and was shocked that anyone thought it was appropriate for anyone to learn in.

I have removed my child from DeKalb schools because not all schools and children are treated the same. The last year my child was in a DeKalb school…there was no air conditioning for the first month when temps were over 95 degrees in August. Even the schools that are considered “good” schools are only as good as the parents can get away with. Even when parents buy something for the school the county may or may not let it (computers) be used. It is 100% unfair the facilities and resources some schools have but others don’t.

Chris

July 21st, 2009
2:13 pm

Why renovate a school for thugs? All they are going to do is screw it up again.

Seen it all

July 21st, 2009
2:32 pm

The students at Cross Keys are not thugs. In fact, they are well behaved students who want to achieve and succeed. The condition of this 50+ year old building is out of their control. This school has been deteriorating for many years. It is the Dekalb County School System at fault. As another poster said, if this school was located in South Dekalb or Dunwoody, they would have either had a major renovation or new school back in the 90’s. But because the school has a large Latino population, I guess those students don’t matter, huh?

Cere

July 21st, 2009
2:37 pm

Chris – the students at Cross Keys are actually darn amazing kids. The school has fallen into disrepair simply because the county has let it happen.

Tim

July 21st, 2009
2:42 pm

Schools are in poor condition for two reasons:

1. students abuse them without being punished.
2. School authorities don’t take care of them.

It is all about how you treat what you own. Abuse it and it will need fixing, baby and look out for it, and it will be fine.

David S

July 21st, 2009
2:59 pm

Who “owns” the schools? Nobody that’s who. The kids go for “free” so they don’t value them. The parents don’t really pay any money for the service ($7000 per pupil versus your annual bill – do your own math). The government certainly doesn’t “own” them in that how can any bureaucracy “own” anything or certainly take any responsibility for them.

Notice how you don’t have to beg Kroger to renovate their stores. Same with every private business, and guess what? The products and services you get aren’t any worse while you are waiting for the renovation and you don’t hear anyone making the excuse that they need the renovation to be able to supply you product or services. They make it happen because they compete in the free market and their competitors will offer you what you need if they don’t.

Government is a failure. The truly free market is the solution.

teacher

July 21st, 2009
3:02 pm

Tim and Chris,
Are you out of your minds? Like Cere said, Cross Keys has some amazing students and teachers. Every school has its share of “thugs.”. Why should the awesome CK students be made to attend a dilapidated school because a few “thugs” are there. I have taught DeKalb students from all over the county, and I would take the CK “thugs” over the thugs from other schools.

The reason the school is in such bad shape is because it’s over 50 years old and has never been renovated. The fault, therefore, lies with the school authorities, not students who “abuse without punishment.”

Neighbor

July 21st, 2009
3:13 pm

Cross Keys is not full of thugs; it is full of Mexicans. Why should we waste tax money on rebuilding a school for people that aren’t even here legally? Just drive up and down Buford Highway between North Druid Hills and Briarwood Road. There are Mexicans loitering everywhere. They also constantly jaywalk across a 5-lane road and litter everywhere.

OldTeach

July 21st, 2009
3:49 pm

Beth…When the air was off at my child’s Dekalb high school
[ the kids told me the it was so insufferable that the teachers opened the windows, shut the blinds, turned off the lights, and didn't even try to have instruction ] I called the county office and told them that if they didn’t get someone out to fix it before the next school day I would have TV cameras there filming. Guess what, the repair people were there before school was out, worked late into the evening and it was fixed by morning.
One of the TV channels is doing a pretty good job of investigating abuses now. Maybe someone should hook them up with Dekalb schools.

David S

July 21st, 2009
4:27 pm

This question wouldn’t even be coming up if there were no government schools. There would be no point in the Get Schooled blog because parents would finally be happy with the service they were getting.

Education is WAY too important to be left in the hands of the government.

David S

July 21st, 2009
4:30 pm

Yes, counting on the media to report problems with government is certainly a system you can rely on. I guess taking your kids and your money somewhere better just wouldn’t work as well. I guess the millions of examples of customer-accountable companies and services you encounter every day just don’t give you the kind of warm fuzzy that bitching and complaining about your kids failing school and the unbelievable waste and bureaucracy do.

How’s that going by the way??

teacher

July 21st, 2009
5:09 pm

Neighbor,

I can’t even believe I’m about to dignify your racist, hateful comments with a response, but here it is:

“Cross Keys is not full of thugs; it is full of Mexicans. Why should we waste tax money on rebuilding a school for people that aren’t even here legally?”

Who are YOU to assume that just because a person is Latino, he or she is undocumented. (they’re not all Mexican. Students come from Honduras, Vietnam, Bulgaria, China, Ghana, Gambia, Tanzania, Colombia, Pakistan, Ethiopia, Liberia, Nicaragua, El Salvador, and yes, Mexico…just to name a few countries. Cross Keys also has many American born students. It seems as if you’re implying they deserve more than undocumented students. If so, that’s reason enough, in your racist paradigm, to renovate the school. )

And you’re such an expert on what happens in the neighborhood…have you actually been IN the school to see the wonderful students and teachers?

OH…and Buford Hwy is not pedestrian friendly.

jim d

July 21st, 2009
5:24 pm

a Building does not a school make.

What makes a school is what happens between the walls.

Lets start by getting rid if the gangs and thugs. then see where it leads.

Cere

July 21st, 2009
5:45 pm

Jim – please GO to Cross Keys – you won’t believe it! I’m quite certain there must be asbestos in the building. Pat Pope, our director of construction tells us that’s why they’ve closed the Open Campus (former Briarcliff HS) – it is cost-prohibitive to renovate due to asbestos. Same deal with Tucker (which became a tear-down.) I would imagine Lakeside and Chamblee will show some asbestos in the buildings too. These places are all old and run down. But Cross Keys is the oldest and the worst.

Joy In Teaching

July 21st, 2009
6:33 pm

I’ve taught in a couple of schools where there was peeling paint, leaky ceilings, restrooms with no doors and suspect sewage handling capabilities, occasionally working heating/air conditioning systems, no computers, and a chalkboard.

Had a great time…was able to use creativity in teaching…and the kids learned tons.

I’ve also taught in the schools that were beautiful, architectual wonders filled with computers, projectors, and all sorts of technology.

Had a great time…was able to use creativity in teaching…and some of the kids learned tons if the gang bangers, drug dealers, and other troublemakers are on suspension.

Jim D is right: it isn’t the building…but the make up of the kids, teachers and administration that counts.

Disgusted

July 21st, 2009
7:16 pm

Can someone find out where Crawford Lewis is going to get 3 furlough days out of the schedule. We have already furloughed a post planning day, and there are only 2 work days in the schedule. Pre-planning is soon…..

I take pride in my neighborhood!

July 21st, 2009
8:39 pm

Before the renovation of Cross Keys High School is complete, will you please tell CEO Burrell Ellis to renovate Tucker Recreation Center? That building should be condemned!

FLAWoodLayer

July 21st, 2009
9:03 pm

A couple of coats of paint will not fix failing schools or make AYP. The problems are societal and systemic. With that being said the disparity in facilities in DeKalb is abhorrent.

Jeff

July 21st, 2009
10:13 pm

Btw what are the demographics at this school? “Calling the elephant in the room.”

SG

July 21st, 2009
10:38 pm

I graduated from Cross Keys some 35 years ago in 1974. Of course, that was when DeKalb County was considered an excellent place to get an education. It breaks my heart to see my old school in such disrepair.

Kim->CommunityRadar.com

July 21st, 2009
10:57 pm

Kudos bloggers! In < 12 hrs you have covered the full range of mis-conceptions about immigrants in general and Cross Key HS’ immigrant population in particular. All this while simultaneously force-fitting a debate about what to do with an unsanitary, unsafe, and depressing building into a debate about the relative worth/worthlessness of a public educational system and the rights of citizenship!

Meanwhile, the hard-working, mostly legal immigrants and refugees and their 1st and 2nd generation American children quietly go about the daily task of surviving in a society they love even if it does not love them so much. They do so along-side of their African-American classmates and fewer “white” kids than you’d need to field a football squad.

Who are these kids, really? For example, consider a young man that survived 4 years in a refugee camp in Sierra Leone amid the most unspeakable violence. A boy who recently found himself at CKHS and over came language and cultural barriers (and bigotry). He quietly performed at a high level academically and on the field of athletics to earn a full ride at college. This young man, a boy really until now, has more life experience and dignity in his left toe than most of us have in our entire being.

The “thugs” of Cross Keys HS perform at or above State averages in science and math. They don’t do so well in English and Social Studies. There’s no arguing that many live in relative poverty and amid higher crime incidence in their communities along Buford Hwy. The overwhelming majority of these kids are not involved in nor responsible for any of that.

The overwhelming majority of these kids respect the school and the teachers; they are smart, loving and ambitious; they love their families and they adhere to one faith or another with devotion.

These are the type of kids that are at Cross Keys HS; American kids. They are no different in ways that matter than your own. We should be ashamed.

Kim->CommunityRadar.com

July 21st, 2009
10:59 pm

Jeff asked: Btw what are the demographics at this school? “Calling the elephant in the room.”

Answer -> Mostly brown and overwhelmingly poor. Touche … right.

blurb

July 21st, 2009
11:09 pm

Jeff, the county seems to have moved or deleted demographic information from its website. From the school’s website, I examined its Title 1 plan, dated 2004, which listed the demographics as follows: Asian 145; Hispanic 473; Amer. Indian 1; Black 262; White 66; Multi 15; Total 962. According to that document, “the student population of Cross Keys High School is made up primarily of the culturally diverse families residing in the low-income dwellings surrounding the school and along the Buford Highway corridor.” The DeKalb School System population is overwhelmingly, more than 70 percent, African American. Some on the DeKalb School Watch blog (http://dekalbschoolwatch.blogspot.com) have questioned whether the neglect of Cross Keys stems from racism toward Hispanics. It is beyond dispute that the predominantly African American portions of the county have received the most new buildings and additions. Not only Cross Keys but also Lakeside, in the east, and Chamblee, in the north, are totally decrepit and disgusting. Yet they consistently make AYP. In the south end of the county, by contrast, are located the beautiful new McNair, Miller Grove, and Arabia Mountain high schools. To be fair, the southside experienced overwhelming population growth until recently. But many, many students transfer from that part of the county, under the genesis of NCLB, to Lakeside, Chamblee and other un-updated schools.

Kim->CommunityRadar.com

July 21st, 2009
11:31 pm

SG: The $20 million dollar investment in this school planned for the next 18 months may really surprise the community. You will be able to track progress at my community site. Join the “Cross Keys Supporters” group. We’ll all be sharing what we learn throughout the project. As one of DeKalb’s oldest high schools, Cross Keys has an enormous alumni population. I hope this high profile renovation brings them back to become boosters for this very deserving faculty and kids.

Kim->CommunityRadar.com

July 22nd, 2009
12:07 am

For those that want more recent data, the demo in 2007 was:

Caucasion 34
African-American 174
Latino 634
Asian 106
Unspecified 10

Kim->CommunityRadar.com

July 22nd, 2009
12:09 am

For those that want more recent data, the demo in 2007 was: African-American 174, Asian 106, Caucasion 34, Latino 634, Unspecified 10

Kim->CommunityRadar.com

July 22nd, 2009
12:10 am

2007 data: African-American 174, Asian 106, Caucasian 34, Hispanic 634, Unspecified 10

RSX (Former DeKalb Student)

July 22nd, 2009
1:16 am

Do renovations make a difference?

In my opinion, No.

Let me preface by saying that Cross Keys does need a renovation, because that building is just a hole and an eyesore in general.

But I’ve seen many parts of DeKalb County, and school’s such as Stephenson have nice, new buildings, and yet their students still deface the school and do poorly. Meanwhile, schools like Lakeside and Dunwoody (the latter being my alma mater) are trash and haven’t seen a SPLOST dime in ages, and yet we have, arguably, the strongest student body in the county. The one exception I’ve seen is Miller Grove, but if I recall correctly, that was an all new school, and not a renovation, so I’m not sure if that should count.

Lulu

July 22nd, 2009
1:52 am

I haven’t read all these blogs but enough to get the feeling readers think the condition of a school is a reflection of the socio-economic level it serves. If that is so then you should be upset.
However, we should also be concerned about the fact that a building in no way reflects the quality of education it provides. That is determined by the teachers, parents and students in that order. Too many of the finest educational institutions in the world are made up of dilapidated, archaic architecture: Cambridge, Oxford, Harvard, Yale, Duke to name a few.To merely build a new school because you want to support education is uneducated.
The best college professors I had held class in converted WWII hut barracks. I learned more there in classes that lasted 2 hours in summer schools without airconditioning than I learned in some very swanky post grad seminars in Chicago’s Palmer House.

The Sarge

July 22nd, 2009
3:07 am

There’s a big difference between renovations and regularly scheduled repairs/maintenance. The later can be equated to normal studying throughout the year. The former is tantamount to studying for finals after the last test. Lack of the later pretty much typifies the mindset of our education “leaders”, and the state “leadership”, who allow the schools to fall into a state of disrepair, all-the-while worrying about such superflous items as applying gold to that moron-filled dome. Go ahead and renovate some of these dilapidated shacks which somehow pass for “institutions of learning” (you can probably use some of your “savings” from the proposed teacher furloughs). The big question, state leadership, is…are you going to learn from your past failures in allowing some of these schools to reach such a sad and deplorable state, and put maintenance and repair of schools on a priority budget, or will Georgia taxpayers be footing another renovation bill in a few years?

Donna

July 22nd, 2009
5:10 am

Yes….in a word. A sense of pride, dignity and self esteem starts as children. Perhaps not even at home. Given our kids a place a decent place to learn goes a long way to insuring self esteem. In some cases, a sanctuary for these kids who may not otherwise know such surroundings.

Elizabeth

July 22nd, 2009
8:11 am

Why is today’s blog about this topivc when teachers are facing furloughs even though we have signed contracts that say we must work and be paid for 190 days? This pay reduction will not only affect my retirement income in 4 years, it will also mean that I will not be able to afford to buy any extra supplies for my classroom. This means creative projects will be cut out. This affects kids!@

Cere

July 22nd, 2009
10:16 am

Two points of clarification. One – Sarge, the renovation/construction dollars for DeKalb come from a SPLOST penny sales tax voters imposed on themselves, not from teacher funds whatsoever.

Two – this is not simply a case of , gee the building is old, we’d better spend money to make it look nicer. Go there. Or come to the dekalbschoolwatch blog to view the photos. It’s beyond decrepit. You must ask yourself if you would send your own kid there.

Kim->CommunityRadar.com

July 22nd, 2009
11:16 am

To amplify on Cere’s post – some folks unfamiliar with the situation at the school are missing the point. This is not about improving education. It’s about providing a SAFE and SANITARY place for our kids. Sure, they can learn in a barracks or a ditch but is that what we are saying we should be shooting for in our DeKalb schools? These are our kids and we are all paying for it.

I am concerned about the safety of this school facilities per se and for how it contributes to the under-enrollment at Cross Keys HS. Most parents with a choice are simply not willing to consider the school due to its physical condition.

Threats from electrical fire and structure and other material threats are there. The renovations are critical and long-awaited. A masonry wall that separates one of the bathroom stalls actually fell on a student while on the john. It has been replaced with a nice, unfinished cinder block wall. I hope that in this case we can all agree that renovations would have made a difference for this kids bowel movement. Come on!

Kim->CommunityRadar.com

July 22nd, 2009
11:41 am

@David S: “… warm fuzzy that bitching and complaining about your kids failing school and the unbelievable waste and bureaucracy do.

How’s that going by the way??”

I do not have kids in the system. Whether parents use public, private, or combination of such resources to educate their children, I want them to succeed. You want to end the public system? Fine, go ahead. Vouchers? Where are mine? Home-schooling? Big fan! Different subject …

I am trying to support the actual families and kids that are right now spending their days in my neighborhood high school. While you work on changing the world, I’ll keep “bitching” about the need for a safe and conducive learning environment at Cross Keys HS.

Brookhaven neighbor

July 22nd, 2009
3:20 pm

My neighborhood is about a mile from Cross Keys. It is the closest school, but our neighborhood is zoned for Chamblee High school. Most of the people I know in my neighborhood have their kids enrolled in Marist, St. Pius or other private school. We see the busloads of kids from the Buford Highway corridor coming and going all the time. Obviously, these folks have taken over the school, and they can have it. None of us tax-paying homeowners have any interest in sending our kids to a school that looks like it belongs in a 3rd world country.

Kim->CommunityRadar.com

July 22nd, 2009
10:34 pm

Brookhaven Neighbor (and I mean that literally!): “None of us tax-paying homeowners have any interest in sending our kids to a school that looks like it belongs in a 3rd world country.”

So, if the $20 million plus or minus and any additional improvements make Cross Keys look like it is a modern, “1st world” school, you would send your kids there? Trust me, I get the facilities part – it is unacceptable and that’s why I would like tax payers like you talking to our Board of Education. Please elaborate on your view of the overall situation and your choices. Have you shared your views or sense of outrage with the School System leadership, for example?

Gilcrosskeysindians.org

July 22nd, 2009
11:43 pm

As a Cross Keys alumni I think steps to transform CK into a modern learning facility are wonderful. I still communicate with some of the teachers and faculty. I can also assure you that the problem is not the kids, it is environment. I believe in the students and faculty…just give them a chance.

cgregister

July 23rd, 2009
8:42 am

When will everyone learn that is a community (parents/students/private and public enterprises) that can make or break a school. When I grew up there was no air conditioning in any school that I attended, until I went to college. True, we didn’t start school until the Tuesday after Labor Day and got out in mid June. However, the children who lived in my neighborhood, went to the school in their/my neighborhood. The parents were very involved both working and non working. They supported the school and the teachers there. In fact, quite a few of the teachers lived in the community where they worked, therefore, they also took more pride in their school and their job. INSTEAD OF COMPLAINING SO MUCH, GET OUT AND GET INVOLVED IN A POSITIVE WAY!

Sean Mahwir

July 27th, 2009
8:38 pm

It is embarrassing to live in DeKalb County where some people think that a quality education is only for a selected few. We all should learn more about accepting all students no matter where their parents were born. A clean, comfortable environment sets the stage for positive teaching and learning. Every child deserves that. Too bad the school system isn’t boiling over with money to fix all the schools at the same time.

Kim->CommunityRadar.com

July 29th, 2009
12:49 pm

@cgregister: “However, the children who lived in my neighborhood, went to the school in their/my neighborhood. The parents were very involved both working and non working. They supported the school and the teachers there.”

While I agree with your call for folks to engage in positive change efforts, I must assume you are either not aware or are not sympathetic to the situation of Cross Keys HS. There used to be an attendance zone that could provide exactly the type of support you describe. That is no longer the case.

While some of the elementary schools along Buford Hwy are very much part of their community, Cross Keys is artificially isolated and does not benefit from a natural support community. This combined with the challenges of poverty and the high number of non-native English speakers have created a uniquely weak support community for the High School. See the map and details at:

http://www.communityradar.com/story.php?title=does-cross-keys-hs-have-a-community

If by pointing this out I am complaining, then I am guilty as charged.