Tuesday, April 30, 2013

DeKalb Superintendent releases 90-day action plan

To view the 90-day plan and other recent DeKalb County School System announcements, visit http://www.dekalb.k12.ga.us/. The plan lists five goals; for each, there is a descriptive paragraph and action items. The goals are:
• Address AdvanceED/SACS action items and work to achieve unconditional accreditation status;
• Develop and implement a balanced budget for FY 2014;
• Prioritize student academic achievement and career readiness; strengthen parent, adult
guardian and mentor involvement;
• Develop and implement a plan that will improve operational efficiency throughout the
• Continue to rebuild trust with internal and external district stakeholders

Friday, April 26, 2013

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Former Board of Education members request reinstatement

The AJC reports that four of the six DeKalb County Schools board members removed from duty by Governor Deal have requested reinstatement. As to the two who have not,
... Nancy Jester of Dunwoody, said she will not be petitioning. The other, former board Chairman Eugene Walker, could not be reached for comment. He is following another path that could lead to reinstatement: a lawsuit before the Georgia Supreme Court. ... The petitioning board members will next face an administrative law judge. The governor must wait at least 30 days after Friday to hold the hearing. Deal said if a petition reaches his desk, he won’t instinctively rule it out. Read the whole article @ AJC
Per comments made by Mark Elgart, president and CEO of AdvancED (which includes the Council on Accreditation and School Improvement: Commissions on Elementary, Middle, and Secondary Schools), "the district had begun to address some concerns and likely wouldn’t lose accreditation at the end of the year, even if it remained on probation."

Neighborhood Watch meeting notes

Most excellent notes from last night's neighborhood watch meeting, via Dawn Forman @ Laurel Ridge:

Good Evening Everybody!!

Tonight we had a community neighborhood watch meeting. I wanted to thank everyone that came out, as well as let you know the information that we learned from Major Ellison, our new police major Mr. Fowler, our new community education coordinator, and the police detectives and officers present at the meeting.  I also want to thank Chick-fil-a for donating a large tray of chicken nuggets for tonight's meeting. Please take a few minutes to read this email.

I am going to do bullet points, as that is how I took notes:

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Reminder! Neighborhood Watch meeting tonight [Apr 24]

Neighborhood Watch Meeting will take place onWed April 24th at the North Decatur Presbyterian Church (611 Medlock Rd.), 7:00 pm. 

Major Tracy from Deklab will be on hand to answer questions. 

Please send your questions in advance to manawatch@gmail.com in case he needs to do any research to get the answers.

Cityhood proposals: a word from the sponsors [May 6]

Via http://www.ajc.com/news/news/local/lawmakers-to-meet-on-cityhood-bills/nXSkR/:
State lawmakers from DeKalb County who have proposed new city bills will hold an informational meeting on the efforts in May. 
Issues to be discussed include options of forming cities and annexing into existing cities as well as how to get involved in the efforts. 
The meeting will be held from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. May 6 at Clairmont Hills Baptist Church, at the corner of Clairmont and North Druid Hills roads.  | map |

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

DeKalb County Urban Redevelopment [Apr 24]

DeKalb County will hold a public hearing on April 24, 2013 to expand the boundaries of the DeKalb County Urban Redevelopment Area and amend the DeKalb County Urban Redevelopment Plan. The meeting will begin at 6:30 p.m. and will be held at the Manuel J. Maloof Center Auditorium, 1300 Commerce DriveDecatur, GA 30030.
The plan is available at: http://dekalbcountyurp.files.wordpress.com/2013/04/urban_redevelopment_plan-for-web-sl.pdf

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

International Community School MOVIE [Apr 27]

The International Community School (ICS) invites you to the Atlanta premiere of a documentary feature film about the school titled A Place in the World.

The movie was a Kickstarter project; to see the trailer, visit http://www.aplaceintheworldfilm.com/
Directors Adam Maurer and Bill Silva Reddington spent two years filming ICS families for a documentary that has been shown in film festivals around the world. Now, “A Place in the World” is coming home to ICS for a special screening and party at the school on Saturday, April 27.  
Bid for unique items at our silent auction! Enter to win raffle prizes! 
We’re gathering up some cool stuff to put up for bid at a mini silent-auction before the premiere, so bring some cash and you could be a winner.  
Pizza by the slice and drinks for sale, too.  
When: Saturday, April 27 from 6pm – 9:30pm
Where: ICS Medlock School Cafetorium 

2418 Wood Trail Lane Decatur, Georgia 30033 map |

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Prosperity: "someone closer to fuss at"

If, like most, you struggle to keep up with the ever-mutating DeKalb County cityhood proposal list, the AJC has a nice summary--as of last week:
map via Tucker Patch
Four different proposals swirling around could in theory create at least that many new cities in north and central swaths of Georgia’s third-largest county. But since the boundaries of these would-be cities overlap — mostly in commercial areas highly sought for generating revenue — the battle so far has focused on what the final landscape will look like, not whether the cities make practical sense. Read the rest @ AJC
 Last week, Tucker Patch also attempted to clarify via a crazy quilt of a map that depicts current proposals.

The Civic Association Network (CAN) continues to track updates on all plans.

It all makes you wonder: what if neighborhood associations, businesses and cities in the affected areas spoke with one voice to influence our county government and address the concerns stoking cityhood fever?

Now, that's a fuss that would not fall on deaf ears.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Now found: Claude the cat

Claude the orange tabby is safely home, Yay!

Claude notes that he is "...retiring from the crawl space inspection business. It was fun at first then the mole crickets got kind of mean."

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Romp through the woods 5K [Apr 20]

via Facebook:
Join the 4th Annual Laurel Ridge Elementary School “Romp Thru the Woods” 5K & 1 mile Fun Run & Tot Trot. A true off-road race through the woods between Laurel Ridge & Druid Hills Middle School. Fun for the entire family! All ages and athletic abilities welcome! 
The race is sponsored by the LRES PTA Health & Wellness Committee.
For additional details and registration, see http://www.active.com/running/decatur-ga/romp-thru-the-woods-5k-and-1mile-fun-run-2013

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Druid Hills Charter Cluster: survey

via Facebook
The Druid Hills Charter Cluster Committee is encouraging EVERY stakeholder (parents, teachers, citizens) is this area to take this survey about your education desires going forward. Have a say-so whether you support the charter or not! Feedback from the community is CRUCIAL in this process! Complete ASAP if you haven't already. Thanks! 

Monday, April 8, 2013

Pollenfall 2013

Hide the lawn furniture, the kids, the car... pine pollen is here!

Friday, April 5, 2013

Neighborhood Watch tips & meeting reminder [Apr 24]

Meeting Reminder
Neighborhood Watch Info Meeting
Wed, April 24, 7pm – 8pm
North Decatur Presbyterian Church. 611 Medlock Rd. (map)
Description: This is a joint meeting hosted by The Pine Glen, Laurel Ridge, Medlock, Country Squire, and Evergreen Forest Neighborhoods but open to the community at large.  Major Tracy is the new head of our police precinct, central precinct, in the DeKalb Police Department. 
Neighborhood Watch Tips
posted to Facebook, via Evergreen Forest's neighborhood watch meeting (thanks to Dawn @ Laurel Ridge!):

1. Vans have been driving around their neighborhood with magnets for businesses such as Comcast, but were actually breaking into homes. Don't assume that magnets on vans/trucks mean that the business is legit or should even be at that address and please do not hesitate to call 911 if you see a van/truck with a magnet in a neighbor's home who is not home and is not usual.

2. Please be comfortable about calling 911. Calls are routed to in the order of priority, so emergencies are going to be handled first. An officer may not come out right away, but placing the call could prevent a crime. Since most of our crimes are happening during the day and we've had more patrols in our area, the police are more likely to come.

3. Please take photos of jewelry, serial numbers of electronics and the electronic items themselves. These photos will be helpful in getting your items back if your home is burglarized and they are taken. Pawn shops give the police items that they take in including serial numbers, and one burglary victim had their lap top returned after a recent burglary because they knew the serial number. Photos of jewelry items will help identify your jewelry if it is pawned. They heavily stressed that this is the key to getting items returned if your home is burglarized.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Improving DeKalb Transportation: open mike

Visit DeKalb County's Transportation Plan 2014 website to learn more about how DeKalb is trying to improve our transportation landscape.
Timeline: planning to be complete by Spring 2014.
Image via Dekalb Co.
There are a number of planning meetings coming up (April 16, 18, 20, 22, 23); you can also catch up with previous meetings here.

Even if you can't attend a meeting, you can participate in the process by adding your notes to an interactive map. You will need to log in, but you can make improvement suggestions in the following categories: vehicular, pedestrian, bicycle, transit and multimodal/other. As to feedback, the page states that
We’re looking for ideas on how the transportation system can be improved. For example, you could point out a problematic intersection, an idea for a new sidewalk or trail, a congested roadway, or a need for a new bus route. (We’re not necessarily looking for smaller maintenance issues such as potholes so please be mindful of the overall objective.)  
As a final note, the number of comments received about a certain issue or idea will not necessarily count as “votes” for that improvement. Rather, this mapping tool is one of many sources for our public input, and we’re really looking for ideas that we may not have heard elsewhere. 
You can also send suggestions to Transportationplan@dekalbcountyga.gov

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

School News

PreK Lottery Alert

For those interested in the PreK lottery at Laurel Ridge Elementary, put April 26th on your calendar! The application/lottery process takes place on this date, and is open to those living within the Laurel Ridge attendance zone. (If you have questions about your attendance zone, you can visit http://www.dekalb.k12.ga.us/transportation/school-locator and plug in your address.) Applications will be accepted from 8:30 -1:00 pm at the school, and the lottery drawing will take place at 1:15 pm. Those not winning a spot for the 2013-2014 class will be placed on a waiting list and processed as spaces become available throughout the year.

More information about the documentation required to apply and age-eligibility are available at:

Druid Hills Charter Cluster Update

From Teilynn Ivey, one of the Laurel Ridge representatives on the organizing committee:

The Organizing Committee for the Druid Hills Charter Cluster initiative is committed to developing a charter petition that is reflective of the unique needs, interests, and desires of the students, parents, teachers/staff, and community stakeholders.  The Organizing Committee and stakeholder groups working on the project will consider the collective input provided from surveys and in public meetings.  Your candid feedback on this survey is critical to our planning efforts and very much appreciated.    You may access the survey at: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/DHCC_Survey1

We are also committed to transparency in the planning process, and therefore, we welcome you to our Organizing Committee meetings and to visit our website at:    http://www.druidhillschartercluster.org/home or our Facebook page:  https://www.facebook.com/DruidHillsCharterCluster.  Updates, calendars, meeting notices, agendas, and meeting minutes will be posted regularly to ensure the community is kept apprised of our progress.

Thank you for your time and valued feedback.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Coolest Intown Ace featured

The AJC sings the praises of "our" Ace on Scott Boulevard:
This Ace center is more akin to an old-fashioned general store, complete with antique gas pumps, ice cream and gourmet candy. 
“I hear that comparison a lot,” said co-owner Dave Jones. 
“We like that look of a general store, too.”The second comment the 12,000-square-foot store evokes from most shoppers is, “Cool!” Representatives of the Ace Hardware Corporation had the same reaction, and they recently named the store one of their five “coolest hardware stores in the country” for its unusual offerings and personalized service. Read the rest @ AJC
Intown Ace is a proud sponsor of the MANA Senior Dinner.