Outgoing DeKalb school board member says goodbye and beware

DeKalb school board member Don McChesney lost his District 2 seat to challenger Marshall Orson. Here is McChesney’s farewell statement:

Ladies and gentlemen. Tonight I would like to take a few minutes to comment on my four years on the DeKalb Board of Education. I would first like to sincerely thank the voters of District 2 for allowing me the honor of representing you for the last four years. It has been a challenging four years with very few dull moments.

I would also like to thank my colleagues for their contributions to my education about board service. I have truly learned something from each one of you, both past and present.

I have worked for three superintendents in 4 years. I have definitely been broken in properly. My experiences are probably more like having served multiple terms. I definitely know what change is about.

Please allow me to give a few thoughts on areas that we all need to work on. Let’s look at how this school system appears to define diversity. The dictionary defines diversity as having to do with variety. People and processes that are different from one another. I do not believe we understand that in our school system. Our student body is about 75 percent African-American. Our workforce is probably in excess of 80 percent African- American. Our direction has been to increase those percentages and call it diversity. That definitely skirts the true meaning of the word. There definitely needs to be an increase in Asians, Hispanics, and Caucasians. Failing this, we will not have diversity of thought or action.

Let’s look at our future seven districts and their interaction. Did you know that school board members are the only elected officials that are specifically held to voting on issues that affect the entire district? That means ignoring the very constituents that elected you on many issues. That is one reason why there is so great a misunderstanding amongst the public and the board. It puts terrible pressure on your board to accommodate the very people who put them in office.

Let’s expose the issue where this is most apparent to the Board of Education and those that elect them. How about redistricting? The main question I am always asked is “How can you send children from a school that passes state testing guidelines and send them to a school that does not pass? Last year this would be referring to AYP.

Ladies and gentlemen, the BOE cannot build fences around the performing schools and exclude those from the poorer performing schools. There are those coming that want to cherry pick students for their neighborhood schools at the expense of other schools. Look at any redistricting plan DeKalb has done and you will see gerrymandering or social engineering. Remember every parent wants the best teachers, buildings and leadership for their child no matter where they live. Just ask Cross Keys and their feeder schools.

Did we redistrict two years ago with catering to those who wanted SPLOST funds to build them a new school? How do you get on top of the list? Is it by political influence or need? Why do we continue to pour money into districts that continue to decline in enrollment and leave their schools open even when it is bad for all county taxpayers?

Why did Ashford Park not get a new school? These are questions that deserve real answers that should factor out politics. The hardest decision for a school board member to make is… Will I vote against my district’s narrowed wishes if it has ultimate negative impact on the entire school system? It is hard to do that. Beware of those who only represent their own interests and pummel you with excess verbiage.

Let’s look at ethics for a moment. The school board has a very good ethics policy based on state guidelines. Ask your board to abide by those guidelines as they govern themselves. One of those areas is attendance and punctuality at meetings. I am proud to say I did not miss one board meeting in 4 years.

This board has had extreme pressure put on it from outside of their control. Remember some of the BOE’s major critics about the way we ethically approached things was the DeKalb delegation. It is interesting that those that charged the BOE with ethical questions refuse to have an ethical policy for themselves. They can look at my emails, but I cannot look at theirs.

In closing let me address one more issue. You have been told by someone that I have a bias for women. I would like to comment on that. On this board I have two very close friends. They are both women. Dr. Pam Speaks and Nancy Jester. They have been wonderful to work with and have always shared their thoughts with me. They also have always had my back. They are great board members. They inquire, study, and know that it is about the students and not the adults. You should always seek people like them to represent you. I will let you ask them if I am gender biased.

The most important person in my life is also a woman. My wonderful wife Melinda. We have been married for forty one years. She is the greatest supporter anyone could have. She always stands with me, encourages me and accepts me for what I am. All that I may have accomplished over those 41 years is in great part owed to her. I wonder often how she could have lived with me all these years if I did not put women on an equal plane. Thank you dear for being the best. I chose well.

Finally, beware of those who only represent their own interests and the interests of a narrowed view. They will not help the school system return to greatness.

Remember two things. One is bumper sticker philosophy. It says “Don’t believe everything you think.” The second is that it is about the “kids” not the adults.

Thank you for letting me serve you.

Don McChesney

67 comments Add your comment

Private Citizen

December 13th, 2012
7:10 am

Question to “all:” When a Georgia school district decides they are going to change things up and put school A over here and B over here, and combine schools C and D and take apart schools E and F, etc. and so on, and tell a bunch of students to move (change schools) and repurpose buildings, principals, and teachers, and then maybe do the whole process again a couple of years later, my question is “Who is making this strategy and who is making these decisions?” How many people? At least from the worker point of view, you are sort of informed of these thing but do not know where they come from. There tends to be no name on it, no architect plan with signature sign off lines at the end of it. It just happens due to a “vision.” The “vision” is then promoted etc. etc. So anyway, where does this come from who is “behind it?” That sounds conspiratorial, but it’s like the brass band plays, beat the drum, proclamation issued (usually through the local media), but no “who” associated with it, it is just given like an announcement.

Private Citizen

December 13th, 2012
7:19 am

To be honest, this guy sounds like he has gotten “the routine” and been harassed by crafty folk. I could names names of serveral people in Georgia where that is or has been their full time job, choosing out and harassing certain people and shaping and directing “connections” and political power. They often pick out people who are completely unsuspecting, and it seems to be more of a thrill for them, they who do the harassing and shaping. “Accused of bias” That’s kid’s stuff, Don. It’s what an adult does when they’re screwing with you and you’re on their menu like a baby deer is to a hungry crocodile. They say absolute power corrupts absolutely.

Private Citizen

December 13th, 2012
7:22 am

Anyway, when a school district plays “visionary” and mix-master with the schools, how does it work? Who comes up with the ideas? 3 or 4 people? I mean, this stuff is profound. They make people sell their houses and stuff.

Starik

December 13th, 2012
7:50 am

“Everybody wants the best for their kids.” In most cases, that’s true, but it varies by class. For some folks, the focus is on graduating – the high school diploma is the definition of educational success. For some others, it’s getting your kid into a college. For others it’s getting a meaningful, rigorous diploma that will equip your kid to succeed in college. At this point, there are only a few high schools left in DeKalb where the emphasis is on an education that equips kids to compete at Georgia Tech, Emory or Morehouse, and they’re deteriorating. Got kids? Time to move.

Concerned Parent

December 13th, 2012
8:31 am

Hey Starik – I agree about the lack of schools focusing on education. But that’s what happens when there is a large percentage of parents who are sending their kids to school so they have free babysitting. Walked into a DeKalb Elem school lately? It’s a joke. In my child’s third grade class, more than half of the kids don’t bother to do their homework, don’t bother to be quiet. And this is at one of the top Elem schools in the county (yeah, that isn’t saying much). When a teacher has to consistently repeat the same information to a group of kids who don’t care, the top kids get bored. On top of that, you have overly liberal DeKalb parents saying “every child needs an education.” Yeah, maybe. But if these kids aren’t accepting what you’re trying to force feed them, it’s time to separate the classes into those who want to learn and those who need information repeated a thousand times. Unfortunately not all parents care if their kids graduate or go to college. Yes – it’s time to move – and although I’m going to take a huge hit to the pocketbook, in the spring I’ll be headed to N. Fulton. Sad…

skipper

December 13th, 2012
8:45 am

Can’t succeed with incompetant folks in a no-win situation. No way to keep race out of it….it is too much of an issue. Yes, African Americans were discriminated against. However, once much of that was lifted it still did not mean that since you were now eligible to vote and hold a position that you were competant to do so, more so in education than other offices especially. Hurtful words, but true. This is not the case all the time. Many folks have taken advantage, gotten an education, and moved on into a productive situation. However, the inner city crowd, perhaps because of economics but as well the breakdown of the family and different ideas of “success” has placed its brand on the public school system. It has morphed from school to warehouse and political battleground. These are hard words, but as I have said so often, check back in ten or so years and see where this system is. Cuss me all you want…..it will not better until competancy becomes a pre-requisite to be on a school board and in administrative positions as well.

gsmith

December 13th, 2012
8:48 am

one thing i agree with him is the idea of social engineering…. in my opinion that is all public education in georgia is about. making sure you have black kids going to school with white kids no matter if you have to bus kids from one part of the county to the other or if you have to redistrict by expanding school districts to allow more black kids into schools that are surrounded by predominately white neighborhoods. dekalb does not try and bring up the failing schools, but instead brings failing students from failing schools into schools that are succeeding thus bringing down the flourishing school to the level of the failing school all for the idea of fairness and equality?? the problem with this philosophy is that it does not WORK… all it does is dumb down the successful students in the schools that are working, and this is why most white families that live in dekalb that can afford to have moved their kids into private schools… leaving dekalb with a bunch of schools filled with Hispanics and blacks. when this happens you have the lowest test scores in the state, home values plummet, neighborhoods go to hell, and you are stuck with some of the worst schools in the state,

indigo

December 13th, 2012
8:49 am

So, we have way too many school kids and way too little money.

So, what else is new?

Private Citizen

December 13th, 2012
9:16 am

it will not better until competancy becomes a pre-requisite to be on a school board

read that as it will not better until complacency becomes a pre-requisite to be on a school board

Private Citizen

December 13th, 2012
9:20 am

I was actually talking about the “moving” issue for staff and teachers due to unfriendly mix-master environments. Where I live, instead of moving, one teacher commutes / drives 40 miles each way to get to work to get away from the one district with the mix-master and churn.

Why can’t kids go to school at the school that is nearest to their home? Pretty simple idea. In stodgy Britain where hardly a leaf moves in some towns, they sure do not keep changing the schools and concepts.

Private Citizen

December 13th, 2012
9:23 am

School boards should hire consulting firms before enacting “visionary” “big-change” concepts. It is like the crazy person running the cocktail party decides to rearrange the chairs. It’s a real keen way of depowering everybody and keeping them in adjustment and conflict and receptive to “new ideas” and on edge.

Married with (School) Children

December 13th, 2012
9:41 am

On Tuesday, SACS put Florida A&M on probation because the university “is failing to meet basic educational standards when it comes to finances, student safety, operational “integrity” and leadership”.

How soon until SACS reaches the exact same conclusions about DCS?

Mary Grabar

December 13th, 2012
9:44 am

Ignorant DeKalb County voters lost a great and principled board member in Don McChesney. I think what they’re getting is a fast-talking and sophisticated radical (that was my impression of him at a forum).

Bill & Ed's Excellent Adventure

December 13th, 2012
9:47 am

“Beware of those who only represent their own interests and pummel you with excess verbiage.”

Translation: Beware of the guy who beat me (overwhelmingly with broad support from across his district) last July. He is bad. I am good. I don’t cater to any special interest. I did a good job.

Reality: Indicted superintendent, endless legal expenses, Board dysfunction and infighting, SACS probation, lack of transparency, failing schools, etc, etc, etc, etc….

District 2 voted for change…any change (like District 4). This speaks volumes, regardless of who beat you.

Private Citizen

December 13th, 2012
9:54 am

Bill & Ed Adventure, you’re describing a situation with weak regulation.

Teacher Reader

December 13th, 2012
10:12 am

@ Bill and Ed The person taking Mc Chesney’s place is out for himself and his area. Fernbank just had an addition added on within the last several years. Now they want to tear the school down and put a 900 student school in its place. This is not a good use of funds or planning. It is not a needed new school or necessary use of funds for building.

People did not think through the changes that they voted for, and I will miss Don, as he really did care about ALL of the children in DeKalb and not just those in his district.

Private Citizen

December 13th, 2012
10:22 am

I hope they don’t destroy Fernbank. Somebody in rural NC said that’s what their county does there, goes around and destroys things.

Private Citizen

December 13th, 2012
10:25 am

Some of the old schools have a nice sense of coordinated architecture. I think we’ve slid a little on the aesthetic of new buildings. This is a happy painting. http://schools.dekalb.k12.ga.us/fernbank/images/8233478FA20B474FB66FF49D381247F4.jpg

Private Citizen

December 13th, 2012
10:33 am

other news: Just got an announcement email from Larry Lessig. I looooove Larry Lessig, ethics guy from Harvard http://www.rootstrikers.org/

Private Citizen

December 13th, 2012
10:47 am

from Larry Lessig: Before we could answer, she said “How am I supposed to vote? I can’t get time off work, and it’s late — I gotta feed my kids. And I don’t even know where to go.” Her son pointed to the MacDonald’s across the street and tried to get her attention. She said “I’m only gonna vote for one guy anyway. Obama.” And before we could say more, she was gone. This woman has a lot on her shoulders. A job. Kids to feed. She relies on politicians to do right by her, and when they don’t, what can she do?

Observer

December 13th, 2012
10:54 am

@ Private Citizen. From your posts here, you obviously know little to nothing about redistricting, DeKalb politics, the local context of DeKalb K-12 public education, or the past decade’s history of race relations in DeKalb County. Also, as you usually do, you introduce subjects (10:25 am and 10:33 am) that have nothing to do with the blog-subject, I guess to draw attention to yourself since no-one is responding to your earlier posts. Why don’t you just stay quiet and let others who are knowledgeable about this post their thoughts?

Ueeediot

December 13th, 2012
12:01 pm

@observer
This is the problem with the internet culture today.
We now have many people such as ‘private citizen’ who have, since 2008, become “involved” in politics. These people have many ‘thoughts’ (but dont know much) about how the institutions of the county, state, and country should be run, but have absolutely no basis in fact or logic for their thought. They do not intend to investigate the platitudes espoused by their politicians and believe anything their ‘team’ (read political party) tell them to believe. For instance, all democrats are marxists and all republicans are racists. Neither is true.
These newcomers dont know any history of the county, didnt go to school here, and dont have any experience in the business world or the ability to create successful teams. They simply sit at home and ‘think’ they know how to better run the county.

Many do not realize there are people on both sides of the aisle from the local to the federal to the highest levels of politics in this country who absolutely rely on the facts they know about you, the voter:
1. you dont know much (cause we made sure of that in the school system…. 1 six week course on economics??????)
2. we will gamble that you will never research the claims we make
3. We know that a sympathetic media will NEVER call us out on our misleading statements

mrsdotcom

December 13th, 2012
12:20 pm

I wish this person lived in Clayton County and could run for the Board of Education in Clayton

Ueeediot

December 13th, 2012
12:50 pm

Don McChesney is not ‘diverse’ enough to be elected in Clayton

chillywilly

December 13th, 2012
1:54 pm

Don McChesney sounds like a racist crybaby who didn’t get his way. I wonder if he complained when Dekalb County School System was virtually all white? Dekalb Schools has a white CFO, white head of technology, white head of instruction and a white head of communications. What more doew McChesney want?

Concerned DeKalb Mom

December 13th, 2012
3:28 pm

Chilly–there is more to a diverse population than black and white.

@chilly

December 13th, 2012
3:28 pm

@chilly,
Dekalb does not have a “white head of technology” or a “white head of communications”. It doesn’t have anyone in communications. It does pay an African-American consultant for “communications”. The “white head of instruction” doesn’t seem to have any input into how the schools should work. I wonder why?
“Why didn’t he complain when Dekalb County School System was all white?” How would you know what he did or didn’t complain about a decade or more ago? He wasn’t on the board then. He was busy teaching children for many years in majority African-American schools.
@Chilly, does it make you feel better to use the R-word when you have so little command of the facts? The R-word is no substitute for facts and experience.
“What more does McChesney want?” I don’t know. Maybe he thinks that everyone should be judged by the content of their character and their record of performance for all children, not just those in an affluent enclave. Maybe he prefers lasting system wide success rather than random accomplishments of a few that thrive despite the systems many failures.
Keep talking Don McChesney.

Starik

December 13th, 2012
3:53 pm

Concerned parent: Yes, N. Fulton is the place.

Marney

December 13th, 2012
4:59 pm

bu2

December 13th, 2012
5:34 pm

Actually a bigger problem is those who want to silence those who don’t agree with their point of view.

bu2

December 13th, 2012
5:37 pm

Don was on a dysfunctional school board that failed in about everything it did. He deservedly got soundly beaten. His speech sounds kind of bitter. But I do like his last line. “Don’t believe everything you think.” Its sound advice.

bu2

December 13th, 2012
5:57 pm

@Teacher reader
I have to agree about the planning. But that Fernbank wing from 2005 was a couple of classrooms and a gym, which it never had before. It is the oldest of the 7 schools being replaced and is in pretty bad shape. And I don’t think anyone knows yet whether they will utilize the gym or tear it down as well.

bu2

December 13th, 2012
6:15 pm

A little hypocrisy too:
“There are those coming that want to cherry pick students for their neighborhood schools at the expense of other schools.” McChesney was quite proud of getting the 100 students from Sagamore Hills zoned to Druid Hills HS/MS rezoned to an overcrowded Lakeside HS/Henderson Mill MS. That came at the expense of students who were in Pleasantdale who got sent to Tucker HS/MS. Sagamore Hills is mostly white, mostly middle class. Pleasantdale is all minority and overwhelmingly free lunch.

mike p

December 13th, 2012
8:13 pm

Don.

Thank you for your dedicated,and thoughtful service.

Concernedmom30329

December 13th, 2012
9:13 pm

I think that anyone who thinks that one person (or two or even three) can make a difference on this dysfunctional DCSS board is fooling themselves. The culture of DeKalb, and it isn’t just the school system but the county government as well, leans towards nepotism and mediocrity. I think people run for school board thinking they can make a difference and quickly find out that it isn’t true.

The students from Sagamore were moved as part of a system wide effort to end split feeders. While it sounds like a good idea, not having split feeders has failed in numerous school systems around metro Atlanta. Sometimes geography just makes it necessary. No one from Pleasantdale was moved to Tucker in the last round. They were moved to Evansdale which currently feeds into Lakeside, as does Pleasantdale.

Bu2, what has everyone scratching their heads right now is that in the proposed attendance zone for Fernbank, only the “best” areas of Briar Vista and Laurel Ridge are carved out. Of course, if more students were removed from either school, they wouldn’t be viable anymore.

Concernedmom30329

December 13th, 2012
9:31 pm

I also want to add that being a school board member is like no other elected position I can think of, except for those elected at large, where you are expected to be elected by a district but represent the entire system. It is very difficult especially at a time of dwindling resources and increasing needs.

However, it took Don years to get around to asking hard questions. However, it doesn’t really matter because this administration, like past ones, doesn’t answer the questions anyway.

Private Citizen

December 13th, 2012
10:27 pm

Observer, / Ueeediot, you sound so comfy and cozy with Dekalb County. Isn’t this the place, school system with two law firms on hire? I really could care less about “race relations.” I think you need to flush all of that down the toilet and throw some lime on top. Bury it with the “Georgia Standards.” Observer, good engineering and good policy applies everywhere. I’m not trying to be a jerk, but if you think otherwise, you and me have a difference. You seem to have gamesmanship priorities that come before you get your house in order. I attended a meeting one time at Dekalb County Schools. The person running the meeting was one of the nastiest haughtiest rude self-important persons I’ve ever seen anywhere in my life. Not necessarilly dishonest or crafty, but Very self important.They spoke to the audience like we were a bunch of cattle and they were giving orders, sort of with their nose in the air so they didn’t have to smell us or something. I had a friend whose parent was a career Dekalb County teacher for years and years and did not like it at all and sold their house and left Georgia and Dekalb County. They were nice people, progressive, lefty to the left of anybody, lefty enough to make you nuts, but even will all of that cool and heart and soul, they left. I think the building where they worked was in rough shape and the kids were rough, too. Not terrible bad, just a little rough. From my own experience, I know what it is to work in a raggedy building. Does not mix well with lots of “demand!” propaganda from the managers.

hey let’s take just a minute and honor Ravi Shankar. He just died two days ago. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LXXBfL5lRqE His daughter took after her daddy. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-YLL7ClpTTs

Here’s a track for Mr. Erroll Davis. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZcZ5NNuPq-c

Observer, / Ueeediot, you are correct, I know absolutely zero about redistricting and redistricting in Dekalb County. I know Dekalb County is a huge populated geographic space, miles and mile across. “Redistricting” I associate with what is done to manipulate votes in politics, where on of the districts ends up in an irregular shape and looks the shape of a boot or something because they want to keep on street and not have another. The term makes me uncomfortable. Is there any good to the term? I likely need to read up on it. Maybe you can comment (this is a discussion forum?) and educate me, or anyone else, on the A, B, and C of redistricting and Dekalb County. Allow me to “Thank you in advance” as they say in business.

Private Citizen

December 13th, 2012
10:29 pm

I really need to replace the keyboard on my machine. The keys are not responding evenly, hence some dropped letters here and there when I’m typing. on/one

Private Citizen

December 13th, 2012
10:51 pm

The teacher who left Dekalb County took spouse with them. The spouse was a nurse and also was uncomfortable, working under minimal staffing at hospital and the nurses were given computers and told to type a record of everything while dealing w/ life and death situations. The teacher had a .phd in their content area, not an education degree. This was a pretty serious HR loss, folks, when these two split the scene like a beatnik. They were both good at what they did and were both public servants. They gave Dekalb County (and Georgia) the “bye bye.” Ouch.

Private Citizen

December 13th, 2012
11:02 pm

Observer, if I were you, I’d pay Larry Lessig $100k and ask him to write a consulting paper and specification recommendation for Dekalb County (schools). You’d get your money’s worth and he might be interested.

Private Citizen

December 13th, 2012
11:14 pm

Ralph knew what’s up. He was a world citizen. http://fsc.fernbank.edu/Archive/ralph/index.html

Y-axis

December 14th, 2012
6:13 am

Private citizen, wish you were a little more private.

Pride and Joy

December 14th, 2012
7:49 am

Local BOEs in the metro area are all about race. It’s “payback” time. My children are supposed to suffer because someone unknown ot me and my family discriminated against black people. It wasn’t me. It wasn’t my family but now my children and I are supposed to pay for it.
It’s time to move OUT of the state of Georgia.

Private Citizen

December 14th, 2012
9:00 am

The really confronting part about the neighbors is that the adults seem well-read and learn-ed, but the kid has no vocabulary. Is it from no vocabulary at the school? Is it from home with other priorities? Anyway, pretty stark reality. With all of this official science / math emphasis, future not looking so bright for use of vocabulary here in Georgia. I guess it is not a “business priority.” Use of language will become an art form, like pottery or paintings or something, not something we communicate with.

Ernest

December 14th, 2012
9:52 am

Maureen, thanks for sharing the closing comments by Don. I met him during the 2008 election and found him to be a caring and passionate person with respect to educating children. Finding out he was also a coach told me a lot about his outreach to young student athletes. We are not going to agree on every single issue (there are many) but I could always count on Don to explain why he voted the way he voted. I would always come out of conversations respecting his position.

It is hard to disagree with his point that though elected from a district, he and other Board members are responsible for the entire school district. Unfortunately too many people attempt to pit schools, communities and sides of the county against one another. This is the worst distraction we have in DeKalb and has been going on too long.

Another closing comment by Paul Womack also bears repeating. He indicated he believed the toughest elected positions in the country were the President and school Board members. I can definitely understand why school Board members are on his list after this past decade.

Best wishes to Don, Paul and Tom going forward. I appreciate and thank you for your service!

bu2

December 14th, 2012
10:26 am

@Concerned
I looked it up. There were 51 students moved from Pleasantdale (Lakeside) to Livesey (Tucker). Some were also moved to Evansdale as you thought.

As for the attendance zones, it is neighborhoods that were split before and the most geographically close areas. It looks pretty logical in central Dekalb. The exact opposite is what can be said about Dunwoody Elementary which is the heaviest minority school in Dunwoody. They wrap around the far side of Chesnut ES and pick up 88 students from the far side of that school and pick up 203 students from a small area that used to go to Hightower (with such a small area, I’m guessing its apartments). In the 1st draft the new Austin ES picked up some of the perimeter mall area which now goes to Dunwoody, but that was changed (maybe so apartment kids don’t go to Austin?). So these Nancy Jester fans keep pointing to logical changes in Central Dekalb as being some kind of “special influence” when the oddest things happen in Jester’s district. Instead of complaining about the newest school and the only school not listed as unsatisfactory (Austin) being replaced, somehow its the oldest school being replaced that is sign of influence.

The Druid Hills HS zone has far and away the oldest high school and the oldest elementary schools. In the last redistricting it got hundreds of kids from the poorest performing and poorest economic school in the district. Not that there was anything wrong with that, but its the exact opposite of a sign of influence. Yet there is a group of N. Dekalb people who are just flat out delusional and always attack Druid Hills. Its bizarre and hypocritical. They and Nancy, sometimes, should follow Don’s last piece of advice.

Dunwoody Mom

December 14th, 2012
10:42 am

@bu2..Yet there is a group of N. Dekalb people who are just flat out delusional and always attack Druid Hills

Who attacked Druid Hills? And YOUR continued attacks on N. DeKalb obliterates any sound arguments you may have. You are pointing fingers at other areas in an attempt to turn the conversation away from your views and those of Marshall Orson. There are times you have legitimate comments, but they get lost and ignored with your biting attacks on others.

Dunwoody Mom

December 14th, 2012
10:48 am

@bu2, why do you ignore the fact that Fernbank had a renovation and addition in 2005? There are schools built around the same time as Fernbank that have never had a renovation or addition.

Dunwoody Mom

December 14th, 2012
10:50 am

Basically, bu2, you are solidifying the negative opinion that many have of the Fernbank community.

Private Citizen

December 14th, 2012
10:59 am

If “Dekalb” was smart. they would hire a consultant to match up student demographics and school building resources. Someone who knew what they were doing could probably do the main of it in a day. The “board” etc. would be off the hook as far as conflict and favors, and the public could focus on the “why” of how this connecting students to schools was/is done. Good consultants have a track record of good, effective work. There is no mystery to it.