Elementary school to temporarily shut down for crews to remodel troubled apartment complex

ATLANTA, Ga. — As the City of Atlanta prepares to shut down a troubled apartment complex for remodeling, a nearby elementary school will also close because there won’t be enough students to attend.

Channel 2′s Tyisha Fernandes went to Southeast Atlanta Monday night where Atlanta Public Schools held a hearing about temporarily shutting down Thomasville Heights Elementary School starting next year until the apartments are done.

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School officials said they may not be enough students to keep the school full. Children from the Forest Cove Apartment complex make up about 75% of the student body.

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The city is shutting down the complex to remodel it and make it livable for low income families.

Channel 2 Action News has done several stories over the years on the conditions and the city’s efforts to shut the complex down.

Carla Searsey used to be a resident at Forest Cove until she had enough. She said the property managers wouldn’t fix anything and it just wasn’t livable for her anymore.

“They need to tear them down. They need to tear them down because I mean it’s rat infested, and trash everywhere...they are not fixing up the apartments,” Searsey said.

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Students will relocate and attend school at Slater Elementary, and hopefully have a fresh start with education.

A non-profit group, Purpose Built Schools Atlanta, is working with APS on the temporary shutdown of Thomasville Heights and student relocation process.

“THES has served this neighborhood since 1971 and is the bedrock of an invaluably strong school-community connection,” said Greg Giornelli, President of Purpose Built Schools. “We are confident that the parties to the Forest Cove redevelopment plan will rebuild the apartments over the next three years, and we expect to re-open THES within that timeframe.”

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