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Council of Intown Neighborhoods and Schools Weighs In on Inman Crowding

The CINS position statement says a 6th grade annex is 'less disruptive' than an 8th grade annex.

 

The Council of Intown Neighborhoods and Schools has released a position statement on the issue of how to ease crowding at Inman Middle School.

The statement urges the Atlanta Public Schools to keep Grady High School's current 9-12 grade configuration as it reviews options for the Inman-Grady school cluster.

The statement, which was adopted unanimously by the CINS board on Thursday, also states that the creation of a 6th grade annex would create "fewer negative educational, social, and extracurricular disruptions to a middle school aged-adolescent than an 8th grade annex."

One proposal that has been floated is the idea of creating an academy for 6th or 8th graders, possibly in a former school buidling in the Old Fourth Ward.

The full CINS statement is in the PDF attached to this article.

What do you think should be done about overcrowding at Inman? Share your thoughts in the comments area below.

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Meinert September 29, 2012 at 01:12 PM
The overcrowding at both Inman and Grady is astonishing. Theoretically, APS should have been well aware of overcrowding after the recent (and expensive) APS Capacity-Demographic Study. In my mind, there are two possibilities: (1) the study was done poorly and did not provide correct information for decision-making, or (2) APS knew this was coming and chose to do nothing substantive to solve the problem.
Inman parent September 29, 2012 at 02:24 PM
Any addition capacity should be within walking distance of the existing schools. APS has shown that they cannot handle the bus transportation and they have said they will not provide a prinicipal for new annex. For an annex to work it needs to be within walking distance.
Ashland88 September 29, 2012 at 02:39 PM
The Howard campus could easily be used as an annex. It makes sense to invest in a property that is already owned by APS , has Beltline proximity and is near the population growth patterns exhibited by Mary Lin. Moreover, it makes sense for future expansion needs to locate any new classroom space in an area that is most likely going to require a second middle school down the road. Cramming new classroom space onto or near the Inman campus will not accomplish that goal. 6th graders do not share classes with 7th and 8th graders and the extra space at Howard could easily accommodate their own after school programs and allow for other academic programming space. Maintaining walkability to Inman only suits a very narrow group of residents in close proximity to Inman and leaves the vast majority of other neighborhoods out in the cold. There is absolutely no reason that an annex cannot work at the DT Howard Campus in the Old 4th ward. Furthermore, should Grady need expansion space or a required annex, Inman would be better suited for that given its proximity to the high school with the middle school children easily fitting into a renovated Howard campus.
Great Schools September 29, 2012 at 06:19 PM
Although Howard could make a great school on its own, it's not the best choice for an annex to Inman. The writer above mentions the general concept of walking to school--which is important and actually impacts a very large number of Inman students--but perhaps the more important "walkability issue" is the ability to walk between the main school and the future annex. Scheduling is already extremely challenging at Inman--adding a driving component between campuses will make that even tougher. If "connections" teachers who teach at all grade levels (language, music, PE, drama etc.) can't get between campuses quickly and easily, course offerings will become even more limited as the teachers' onsite availability and flexibility are curtailed. If students can't walk between campuses for before/after school enrichment activities (jazz band, honor orchestra, photography club, a variety of club sports, debate, GROW, GEMS, etc), our kids will also experience far fewer options and opportunities. There aren't enough teacher sponsors, volunteers, and time/money resources to offer all our clubs at both campuses…
Great Schools September 29, 2012 at 06:19 PM
...(continued) Easy walking distance between campuses is key to maintaining an enriching environment and flexible course offerings. If we are to employ the annex model as directed by Davis, we should make every effort to locate it close to Inman before compromising with farther locations. Teachers and administrators will be especially grateful for the proximity, and so will parents who have students on both campuses. Don't kid yourself that APS can afford to give us extra resources, like an intercampus bus, to make up the deficits that will occur with an offsite annex. Middle school has already taken a blow with the new state PE requirements that made it impossible for kids to take both music and language classes this year. More limits on opportunities within and around the school day, which will result from an annex too far away, are likely to make parents look elsewhere for a better educational environment.
Inman parent September 29, 2012 at 06:25 PM
6th graders do not share core classes but they do participate in after school activities. They deserve the same respect and considerations as teh 7th and 8th graders. The 6th graders take connections classes so I am not sure how you would go about sharing connections teachers between campus located 2 miles apart. 2 miles may not seem that far but the reality is a big impact on the students. Getting the Inman schedules done this year has been a nightmare, add in an offsite annex without separate administration and support staff and it will be an even worse nightmare. I personally know 2 families who have left Inman in the past few weeks and fear that more will leave. I don't live extremely close to Inman. I just want what is best for the students. so far I have not heard one academic related reason for an annex. All reasons are simply related to dealing with overcrowding.
Inman parent September 29, 2012 at 06:26 PM
If the Howard property were a second middle school that would be fine. Then all students would have a reasonable commute to school and on site administration. Howard may work as an annex in the long run but at what cost? It will drive away a core group of students and parents who are big volunteers. Look at the lack of participation in Inman volunteer needs this year - it will only get worse. I just don't see a lot of parents being engaged in an annex. Does the Howard property have asbestos issues? If so, the cost to renovate may be prohibitive. There was a recent court case regarding asbestos removal and the steps needed to protect the workers. I don't know all the issues-just saying that whatever quotes APS might have gotten in the past about renovating Howard are probably outdated now. We are all entitled to our opinion and I respect that you would like to see Howard used as an annex. I just do not agree. Grady certainly needs to be addressed but we can't count on APS doing anything at all about Grady. They have repeatedly said that Grady is not a problem. I say tear down the stadium and build more classroom space. Academics takes priority. It's not really Grady's stadium anyway.

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