Virginia-Highland Civic Association to Host School Capacity Forum
Meeting aims to bring Grady cluster communities to the same table to discuss overcrowding at the middle school level
The Virginia-Highland Civic Association will host a forum on June 27 to discuss middle school capacity issues in the Grady High School cluster.
The meeting is intended to give all Grady cluster communities a voice in the effort to address middle school capacity issues in the area.
The group will work with a facilitator to keep order in the meeting and notes from the forum will be shared with Cecily Harsch-Kinnane, the Grady cluster representative on the Atlanta Public Schools board of education.
“We're also reaching out to other neighborhoods to discuss how to promote dialogue throughout the cluster around this issue,” VHCA education committee chair Nicole Foerschler Horn said. “That's a process we hope to continue to develop in future weeks.”
Five elementary schools — Centennial Place Elementary, Hope-Hill Elementary, Mary Lin Elementary, Morningside Elementary and Springdale Park Elementary — feed into Inman Middle School, but there's just not enough desks for the growing student population in the area.
Inman was built for about 770 students but can hold about 900 students, principal Paula Herrema said at a meeting earlier this year.
Enrollment at Inman was around 900 students last school year, and Herrema said the school functioned well but wouldn’t be able to handle more kids without an expansion.
Future projected enrollment at Inman could hit nearly 1,400 students in 2017 when current kindergartners would attend sixth grade.
During the effort earlier this year to redraw school attendance zones and address capacity issues, Superintendent Erroll B. Davis, Jr. proposed moving the sixth grade classes at Inman to the shuttered Cook Elementary School on Memorial Drive.
But parents vehemently opposed this plan, calling for more time to research the impact of the grade six academy model on student achievement.
Davis and the board of education instead agreed to install portable trailers before next school year to accommodate all students.
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