DeKalb Votes To Close 8 Schools

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DEKALB COUNTY, Ga.,None — The DeKalb County School Board voted Monday to adopt the superintendent's plan to close eight schools as part of a redistricting effort.

DeKalb School Board Adopts Redistricting Plan

Interim Superintendent Ramona Tyson had recommended that eight schools close, affecting 9,000 students. While the board voted in favor of Tyson's plan, it made eight amendments to her recommendations which will affect 7,000 students.

Under Tyson's plan, eight schools will close. Six of them will be decommissioned; two of them will be put on inactive status, meaning they could open again in the future.

Channel 2 Action News reporter Erica Byfield was at the meeting Monday and said hundreds filed into Dekalb County Schools district headquarters for the redistricting vote.

Parent Connie Boone asked the board, "Why are you shuffling the students around like dominoes?"

She was among many outraged parents at the meeting. Some are planning to fight back.

"We had to do something to send a message to DeKalb County that we're not going to stand for this," parent Tasha Walker said.

She said she sent a message with a lawsuit asking for an immediate junction against the board's decision. Walker and other parents said the decision discriminates against southside families.

"That's sending a message that our homes are not of value, that our schools are not of value, our children are not of value," she said.

WEB EXTRA: DeKalb Redistricting and School Consolidation

The affected schools are: Atheron, Glen Haven, Gresham Park, Peachcrest, Medlock and Sky Haven Elementary Schools; along with Avondale Middle School and Avondale High School.

At an earlier meeting, Tyson told the board her recommendations would save the district $12 million a year and would reduce the number of open seats from 11,000 to 6,000.

Board members told Byfield the new plan maintains the $12 million a year savings.

"The most important thing is all the changes had in common is that they did not affect the savings," school board chair Tim Bowen said.

The recommended plan also redraws school lines throughout the county.