Thursday, March 19, 2015

Austin Elementary School Replacement Update

Courtesy of Stan Jester's DeKalb School Fact Checker.

Cynthia Brictson and Michael Thurmond were on hand at the Austin Elementary School Council meeting Wednesday where John Jambro, Director of Design & Construction, delivered an Austin Replacement School Update.

Two things are perfectly clear;  1)  The school district does not know what to do with the students during the rebuild.  2)  The community would like a school with a capacity of 750 students and not a prototypical school with 900 students.

To that end, the district is currently performing a feasibility study to determine if renovation is a viable option.  The output of the feasibility study will include
  • Renovation and addition cost model
  • Conceptual building plan
  • Determination of a suitable location for a possible facility expansion
Click here to view the Austin Elementary Replace School  Update Powerpoint Presentation.


  1. It will be incredibly fiscally irresponsible of DCSD (not that this is anything new....) to spend the money to rebuild Austin at a school capacity of 750 students. Currently 5 of the 6 elementary schools in the Dunwoody cluster are overcapacity (greater than 100%) with only more growth indicated. A single"community" should not be able to decide they don't have to play by the same rules as everyone else. The County decided 900 student ES schools would only be built in the future and a larger elementary school is what the Dunwoody cluster needs. Austin should be built as a 900 seat school.

  2. I tend to agree with you. These type of decisions should not be made in a vacuum around one school, but with consideration of the entire communities needs. However, if the new Austin is built at a 900 capacity level, then the dreaded "R" word (redistricting) comes into play. Sadly, our community does not handle these discussions very well.

  3. It doesn't matter how uncomfortable a discussion it will be about redistricting. There is a need for the seats/capacity in the cluster. Parents are going to just have to deal. There is no sign that growth is slowing. I understand that DES will have trailers next year. And Vanderlyn still has whole grade levels outside. That this is being discussed at all, is troubling.

  4. I drove by Peachtree Middle School this past weekend. I noticed additional modular trailers. I remember my husband and I attending the community meeting before the new PCMS was built. The DCSS representative (I believe, Stanley Pritchett?) was told numerous times that building the school based on its then-current student population was short-sighted as all projections had the Dunwoody cluster student populations growing, as they have. There was certainly enough land to build a larger school. Pritchett's answer? "We will re-district if it comes to that".