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SEPTEMBER 16 - 29, 2016 • VOL. 8 — NO. 19

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SPECIAL SECT

Fall 2016

► For some high schoolers, plays really are the thing

ION | SEPT EMBER

EDUCATION GUIDE 16-29, 2016

Theater offers a part in ‘the ultimat e group project’

► Schools providing fresh local produce for lunch Sam Reed, left, HIL MOSIER student at The a School in SandyGalloway Springs, rehear for “The Compl ses ete Works of William Shakespeare , Abridged,” in the school ’s Chaddick Theater on Sept. 8.

SPECIAL SECTION: FALL 2016 EDUCATION GUIDE | INSERT PHIL MOSIER

For some local plays really arehigh schoolers, the thing

TURNAROUND STRATEGIES Challenges for public schools

Page 8

Dogs have their day

Farm-to-cafete ria fresh local pro : Schools provide duce for lunch

Restaurant work halted after ‘White House’ is torn down

BY DONNA WILLIAMS LEWIS doing their daily It says somet hing about warmup — mimic a high school class when a leader of the king the fire alarm goes moment in interp off and nobod reting music races gleefully through movem y for the door. ent. “They were frustra Pace Academy theater teache ted because r Sean Bryhaving a blast,” they were an said his “entire class Bryan said. moane d in great frustration” On top of that, when a fire darn it, they drill sounded had to put their shoes back ing a recent duracting class. on. His students were See FOR on page

2

BY LESLIE JOHN SON close as a school Here’s some food for though garden that studen t: For thousands of metro maintain and ts help harvest, within Atlanta school children, the a few hours’ proverbial appledrive on a Georgi a-day may come a farm or a stone’s from just around the regionally, in throw corner, thank Florida or North s to a nation Carolina. farm-to-scho Since 2011, al ol initiative. the school nutriti grams in the on proIn fact, health DeKalb and y produce on Fulton system the school lunch menu have participated s could be sprout in the Nation ing from as al Farm to See FARM on page 14

FAILING SCHOO LS Gov. Deal propos es state takeover

Page 9

BACK-TO-SCH OOL COSTS Expect to pay more

Page 16

BY DYANA BAGBY dyanabagby@reporternewspapers.net

Developers are challenging a city decision to stop construction of a restaurant on Caldwell Road after a contractor tore down a building known as the “Little White House” without a demolition permit. White House property owner Fitz Rybert is set to appear before the city’s Zoning Board of Appeals on Oct. 19 after the See RESTAURANT on page 13

Sam Howe, 12, enjoys playing with the dogs, including his own labrador, Wheatie, at the 2nd annual “Doggy Dip Day” at Murphey Candler Pool on Sept. 11. Neighbors brought more than 50 pups to swim and play in the water on the day the pool closed for the season. See additional photos on page 12.

MAKING A DIFFERENCE Hospice provides ‘soft landing’

Page 8

This exists to make sure we do not forget our heritage.

Planning Commission defers MARTA project vote BY DYANA BAGBY dyanabagby@reporternewspapers.net There are still a few details to hammer out, but it appears the Planning Commission is prepared to vote to approve the longawaited MARTA mixed-use redevelopment project. The Planning Commission voted unanimously Sept. 7 to defer for 30 days taking action on the MARTA rezoning request needed for a proposed mixed-use development at the Brookhaven-Oglethorpe station on Peachtree Road. MARTA is also asking for

Shep Hammack Organizing president, Mount Vernon Sons of the American Revolution chapter

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2 | Community

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New roads, lanes, paths part of Ashford-Dunwoody corridor fixes BY JOHN RUCH johnruch@reporternewspapers.net

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New roads, lanes and multi-use paths are proposed in the city’s Ashford-Dunwoody Road improvement concepts presented at a Sept. 12 open house at Marist School. The biggest change: two new roads looping behind grocery stores to bypass the tangled Johnson Ferry Road intersection. A major north-south route through Brookhaven, Ashford-Dunwoody Road is a largely two-lane road often overwhelmed by traffic from the hotels, schools and parks that it serves. Last year, the City Council hired Gresham, Smith and Partners for $125,000 to come up with a “corridor vision” to improve the street. More than 100 people attended a first round of public input meetings in March. Dozens attended the Sept. 12 open house to see the first draft of the planners’ concepts, which likely will be posted on the city’s website later this week, according to Public Works Director Richard Meehan. A final draft based on public feedback will be presented at another meeting, likely before year’s end, when the city wants to have a plan on the books. Reaction to the proposed changes appeared to be a mix of interest and anxiety, and depended on the various ideas for various sections of the 3-mile-long street. “It may help traffic, but the more you improve that, the more it encourages people to cut through my neighborhood,” said a woman who lives on West Nancy Creek Drive and declined to give her name. The vision for the overall street is adding sidewalks and multi-use paths, as well as grassy medians in some spots. Much of the work could be done within existing right of way, though that can still mean cutting down trees and taking a strip of what many residents now use as their front yards. The biggest proposed change targets one of the street’s biggest problems: the unusual intersection with Johnson Ferry, which is shaped like an elongated X and

contains sharp turns and lane changes. The concept is to let most north-south traffic circumvent the intersection completely by creating new roads behind the Publix grocery store and the Cambridge Square shopping center, where Kroger is the anchor store. The existing intersection would remain for shopping access and east-west traffic. At Cambridge Square, an existing rear driveway would be turned into a road aligned with Woods Drive, which is a driveway into Blackburn Park, with a signalized intersection. At Publix, an existing partial driveway would become a full cut-through road aligned with Blair Circle. The new roads could be one-way or two-way and might have appropriate turn lanes.

OTHER PROPOSED CHANGES:

Perimeter Summit Parkway/Oak Drive: Add second northbound and southbound through lanes; lengthen the northbound left-turn lane; extend the southbound right-turn lane to Ashford Green; adjust traffic signal timing. Montgomery Elementary: Traffic signal upgrade; add a northbound rightturn lane; “modify” school pick-up/dropoff traffic; improve pedestrian crossings. West Nancy Creek Drive: Add eastbound and westbound left-turn lanes; adjust signal timing. Marist School/Harts Mill Road: Lengthen westbound right-turn lane onto Harts Mill; adjust signal timing. Windsor Parkway: Add northbound left-turn lane; add southbound and eastbound right-turn lanes; add actuated traffic signal; consider a “potential roundabout”; add left-turn lane at St. Martin’s Episcopal School. Peachtree Road: Lengthen southbound right-turn lane to the Sanctuary at Oglethorpe Apartments; convert the southbound right-turn lane to free-flow; add a southbound right-turn lane; improve turning radius for the northeast corner.

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SEPTEMBER 16 - 29, 2016

Hastings developers appealing ruling BY DYANA BAGBY dyanabagby@reporternewspapers.net

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Developers of a proposed mixed-use project on the former Hastings Nursery site are heading to the state Court of Appeals in their challenge to the city’s rejection of the plan. JLB Realty and SDS Real Property sued the city and some individual residents last year after the city did not issue a land disturbance permit for property located at 3920, 3926 and 3930 Peachtree Road for a mixed-use development on the nearly 5 acres. The property abuts the Historic Brookhaven neighborhood and lies within the Brookhaven-Peachtree Overlay District. In June, DeKalb County Superior Court Judge Clarence Seeliger ruled the city was right to deny the permit because, among other reasons, the developers did not complete the rezoning process. JLB Realty and SDS Real Property appealed the ruling, and on Aug. 16 the Court of Appeals agreed to hear the case. The developers argue in their appeal that the apartments they are seeking to build are located within the area of the property zoned for commercial use and that the Overlay District allows them to build the apartments in a commercial zone. They add that they are not planning to develop the parcel that is zoned single-family residential. The development, named JLB Porter Square, includes plans for 273 apartments, 17,695 square feet of retail and commercial space, 2,500 square feet for a leasing office and 6,691 square feet for an enclosed amenity area. Residents of Historic Brookhaven strongly opposed the mixed-use development. The residents named in the lawsuit hired zoning attorney Doug Dillard of Pursley, Friese, Torgrimson to represent them. Historic Brookhaven residents presented wishes to developers to include keeping the 150-foot forested buffer at 3926 Peachtree Road zoned for singlefamily residential and to not disturb it. That property lies between the commercially zoned parcels on Peachtree and a handful of backyards of Brookhaven Drive homes. “We’re not against development in general, we’re against an 87-foot highrise towering over our neighborhood,” Historic Brookhaven resident Gayle Sherlag, a defendant in the lawsuit, said in 2015. Under the developers’ original plans filed with the city, the apartments would be built 30 feet into that forested buffer, and the plans are to keep only 30 feet of landscaped buffer space between the neighborhood and the development. That space will also include a detention

pond and a public open space. The city supported the development during the rezoning process, stating in a memo to the Planning Commission in 2015 that “the emerging trend for mixed-use, pedestrian-friendly development along Peachtree Road as part of the Brookhaven-Peachtree Overlay District, the subject property appears to be underutilized. “The requested PC-2 [Pedestrian Community] zoning would allow for a density and use that is consistent with the Brookhaven-Peachtree Overlay District, and the policy and intent of the Comprehensive Plan,” the memo stated. On May 7, 2015, developers applied to the city for a land disturbance permit and then on May 26, 2015, withdrew its rezoning application. They were seeking to rezone the property from C-1 (commercial) and R-100 (single-family residential) to PC-2. “Having failed to complete that [rezoning process], they would have been able to obtain a land development permit,” Seeliger said in his June decision in favor of the city. The city declined to comment on the case. Attorneys for the residents and the developers did not return requests for comment.

Community Briefs CITY POS T P O NES HI R ING FIR M FO R O VER L AY DI S TR I C T R EV I EW

The Brookhaven City Council voted 3 to 1 at its Sept. 13 meeting to delay the review of the Brookhaven-Peachtree Overlay District. Council members said they wanted give time for the public to have input on the company that will be hired to conduct the review. Voting in favor were Councilmembers Bates Mattison, Joe Gebbia and Linley Jones. Councilmember John Park voted no. The council was set to vote to hire Sycamore consulting firm and Atlanta-based urban planning firm TSW for $136,500 to review the contentious Brookhaven-Peachtree Overlay District. Sycamore is currently facilitating the city’s character area studies of residential neighborhoods and recommended TSW for its zoning expertise. Mattison requested the two-week deferral. If the community is not happy with the firm, the city will put out a request for proposal for the job.

13 APPO INTED TO A FFO R DA B L E HO US I NG TA S K FO R C E

Thirteen volunteers were appointed to the city’s first Affordable Housing Task Force at the Sept. 13 council meeting. Serving on the task force are: David Schaefer, director of Policy and Advocacy at the Latin American Association; Rev. Hace Cargo, assistant pastor at Brookhaven Presbyterian Church; Rev. David Park, lead pastor at Open Table Community; E.P. “Pete” Walker, president and CEO of the DeKalb County Housing Authority; Gail Williams, executive director of Metro Fair Housing Services; Penny Morceri, director of Government Affairs for the Atlanta Apartment Association; David Ellis, executive vice president of Greater Atlanta Home Builders Association; Shelly Simmons, CEO of the Statewide Independent Living Council; Sarah Brechin, program coordinator for Pan Asian Community Services; Barbara Shaw; Rev. Mac Broughton; Marion Lou, founder of We Love BuHi; and Jennifer Owens. The Task Force idea was made by City Councilmember Linley Jones after local faith leaders urged the council to consider affordable housing.


4 | Community

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New chapter of Sons of the American Revolution promotes history BY JACLYN TURNER Millions of people are proud to be American, but only some can trace their lineage back to the patriots who risked everything to help America reach independence. The Sons of the American Revolution, an organization for male descendants of those patriots that helps to preserve the history, has a new chapter based in Dunwoody and Sandy Springs. “This exists to make sure we do not forget our heritage,” said Dunwoody resident Shep Hammack, 72, the organizing president for the new Mount Vernon SAR chapter. The chapter, which has met since March, will receive its charter at a banquet Sept. 24 at Villa Christina in Brookhaven, and expects to have at least 60 members. The SAR consists of 50 societies, 500 chapters and approximately 33,000 members. There are 32 chapters in Georgia. The new local chapter’s name has a dual significance. “Mount Vernon” is the name of George Washington’s home in Virginia, and the name of a street connecting Sandy Springs and Dunwoody, the cities where most of the new chapter’s members reside. Membership eligibility is based on being able to prove descent from someone

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Diane Smith is committed to the success of her agents. does doofit? Hardandwork, She is highlyHow driven, withhelots passion a loveof for technology.course, She has built her real estate career but his motto is simple: “If youon integrity and knowledge of the market. Harry Norman, take of your clients, willin REALTORS® forthe thebest past care 85 years has done the it same the Atlanta market. Diane come is a strong back motivator to you.” and enjoys coaching people to achieve their highest potential.

Clients note that Allan goes above their accessible. Diane believes in coaching the whole person and focusing on strengths am availablelevels whenever I’m needed to drive them to achieve “Iextraordinary of accomplishment. Training is the foundation… of real a thriving it is essential estate iscareer, not aand Monday throughto build and update your knowledge. Knowledge is power and is BRINGING ATLANTA Friday, nine-to-five job.” That’sgrowth what powerful! Harry Norman, REALTORS® gives its associates the training, BUYERS & SELLERS some comingand back to support and exposure theykeeps need to buildclients their business achieve TOGETHER FOR their goals. With a supportive office of experienced associates and staff, Allan again and again. OVER 15 YEARS

who fought in or actively supported the Revolution. SAR members tend to be of retired age, but are able to join at any age. Hammack enrolled his grandsons in the SAR, but doesn’t expect them to be active unless they develop an interest. “I’ve always been interested in history,” Hammack said of his interest in genealogy. “I had known about my great-great grandfather who was in the Confederate army, and killed at the breakout [during the siege of] Petersburg [in Virginia]. I have a letter written by him to my great-grandfather, who was 3 at the time.” “Ten years ago I decided to look further back,” he continued. “I joined SAR to prove the line. I wasn’t going to get very involved. I just wanted to prove what I thought was true. But then the rest was history and I got involved.” Hammack traced his ancestry back to a William Dugan, who was at Valley Forge in Pennsylvania. Another member, Sandy Springs resident Don Hart, with the help of his wife Marlene’s interest in genealogy, traced his lineage to a great-grandfather (going back five “greats”). That ancestor was a captain of light horse cavalry; his six sons fought with him in the Revolutionary War. He

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the Year in her office. Continuing on as top producer for 8 years while transaction has been smooth including and earning designations and very certifications Certified Relocation Specialist and Lifetime Member of the Million Dollar Club. Diane very pleasant. He is honest, diligent, moved on to become a successful managing broker for 8 years. Now she andNorman his record speaks forfamily, as Sr. Vice President ishard-working, a part of the Harry REALTORS® and Managing Broker itself.”—Kory and of JefftheMSandy Springs Office. In her previous career, Diane worked in banking for 20 years as a branch manager and senior Satisfied clients with are Allan’s number one priority. loan officer, a strong marketing andAnd finance Not background. Shebut has just the top agent, for over 35 years and is Allan the proud of two wonderful also a great family man, Allan it been shows.married We couldn’t be prouder! Congrats from mother is pictured here with his wife, boys. She enjoys reading a good book and kayaking.

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Community | 5

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SHEP HAMMACK

Members of the Mount Vernon Chapter Colorguard in full uniform, from left, Geoff Oosterhoudt, Tom Chrisman, Bob McCleskey, Shep Hammack and Randy Pollard.

won a battle at Mask’s Ferry on the Peedee River at Wilmington, N.C. The SAR brotherhood works to perpetuate the memory of and records from the Revolutionary War through educating students, seeking out burial grounds of soldiers to give them a grave marking, and presenting a color guard for civic events, parades and other patriotic program. SAR chapters also give businesses certificates for properly displaying the American flag, which includes keeping it lit at night. Many SAR chapters focus on education by visiting elementary and middle schools with a traveling trunk filled with reproductions of toothbrushes, soap, dolls made of

cornhusk and other items to teach the students about life during the 1700s. SAR chapters are also active with Eagle Scouts, and offer scholarships at the chapter, state and national levels. The SAR holds meetings once a month, and often invite speakers to give historical talks. The local chapter’s topics have included Christmas celebrations during Revolutionary times and the life of Baron Johann de Kalb, a war hero who was the namesake of DeKalb County. The Mount Vernon chapter meets on the second Tuesday of the month, with its next meeting taking place Oct. 11. Visit georgiasocietysar.org for more information.

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A study of Pill Hill’s traffic and possible mitigation projects is underway, with results expected by mid-November.

BY JOHN RUCH johnruch@reporternewspapers.net

A wide-ranging study of Pill Hill’s traffic and possible mitigation projects is underway, with results expected by mid-November. Some officials are questioning how useful the study, conducted by KimleyHorn, will be, given its 90-day timeframe, small target area and inclusion of projects that remain on the planning board. One state project that triggered the study, “managed lane” ramps along I-285 and Ga. 400, lacks any detailed plan. But Yvonne Williams, president and CEO of the Perimeter Center Improvement Districts, which commissioned the study last month on behalf of the Medical Center’s institutions, said she believes there’s value in the study.

“The study will be identifying best opportunities to best relieve traffic,” she said, adding that Kimley-Horn has conducted many previous Pill Hill studies and has that background to draw on. “There’s a lot of interest in the Medical Center area,” Williams said. “[Local institutions need] to make sure that we have a transportation grid that works… It makes absolute sense that we [have] a complete transportation network.” The study came out of an effort by Northside Hospital, which is footing the $100,000 bill, according to Williams. But Emory Saint Joseph’s and Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta at Scottish Rite are participating, along with Sandy Springs city staff and other local stakeholders. The study will include existing conditions and projects on the books, as well

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as such longstanding concepts as exsibilities under study are two giant tending Perimeter Center Parkway beramps going right through the interhind Emory Saint Joseph’s to Johnson change and an access-ramp system Ferry Road. where Ashford-Dunwoody Road meets The four-year reconstruction of the I-285. Some of those ideas got NorthI-285/Ga.400 interchange alongside side’s attention, Goldberg said. Pill Hill, slated to begin in October, is “That conversation started the largthe elephant in the room. But Norther conversation about what can be side’s desire for a traffic study was trigdone to improve traffic in that area,” gered, Williams said, she said. by another, even lonThe complexiger-term state project ty and uncertainthere: “managed lanes,” ty of such proposals meaning separate lanes There’s a lot of interest are also getting atwith access limited in the Medical Center tention. At a recent by toll or vehicle type, Sandy Springs City which would be added area. [Local institutions Council briefing, to the interchange and need] to make sure that Bryant Poole, the asthe top-end Perimeter we have a transportasistant city managin general later. er for infrastruction grid that works… Gov. Nathan Deal anture, likened the nounced funding for It makes absolute sense I-285/Ga.400 manthe managed lanes ear- that we [have] a complete aged lanes to “trylier this year, but de- transportation network. ing to stick a needle tails were scarce. Jill through a spaghetti Goldberg, the Georgia YVONNE WILLIAMS, PRESIDENT noodle.” AND CEO OF THE PERIMETER CENDepartment of Trans- TER IMPROVEMENT DISTRICTS “We think that portation’s communithis [traffic study] cations manager, said scope should be exin a recent interview that the managed panded” to a larger area and a longer lanes must begin construction by 2026 timeframe, he said, noting the “devil is under the funding order, but that it is in the details.” too late to fold them into the current Goldberg agreed that the uncertainI-285/Ga.400 project. ty and timeframe means the Pill Hill “It’s not possible to do within the curstudy will be a “very broad stroke” done rent scope of the I-285/Ga.400 reconin an “extremely high-level” method. struction,” she said. But it’s also just part of a package The lanes will have to be built latof new cooperative traffic planning for er and will require their own land acthe Medical Center. The three hospitals quisition and environmental review, and Sandy Springs are also working on among other complexities, Goldberg an agreement to conduct joint traffic said. GDOT knows that the current and parking plans, apparently for the interchange project won’t make the first time in their history. The activity managed lanes impossible, she said, follows Mayor Rusty Paul and the City but still hasn’t decided exactly where Council this summer expressing disthey will run. pleasure with the apparent lack of soAccording to the city of Sandy lutions for the booming Medical CenSprings, among the managed lane poster’s traffic.

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8 | Making a Difference

THERE’S ONE THING WORSE THAN KNOWING YOU HAVE LUNG CANCER. NOT KNOWING.

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Hospice Atlanta Center provides ‘soft landing’ for terminally ill BY DYANA BAGBY dyanabagby@reporternewspapers.net

Linda Booth said her husband, a physician, loved the philosophy of hospice, of caring for a dying person that allows the patient and their family to enjoy their last months together in an environment that is gentle to all. “He called [hospice care] a soft landing,” she said. Dr. Arthur Booth was a general surgeon and a founder of Brookhaven-based Hospice Atlanta Center, which is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year. A gala and fundraiser is set for Oct. 27 to commemorate the founders, who also include Marry Gellerstedt, Warren Jobe and late Eula Carlos. As a surgeon who treated cancer patients for much of his career, Dr. Booth was intent on bringing hospice services to metro Atlanta in the mid-1980s after working with families in which a parent in each family died from the disease. The daughter of one family was able to take a leave of absence from work and spend the last six months of her father’s life caring for him. The daughter of the other family could not take off and had to travel often for her job. She asked Dr. Booth to check in on her mother when she was out of town. One day when he didn’t get an answer at the ill woman’s home, he went to the emergency room of the local hospital. He found the daughter curled up on the bathroom floor. “These two daughters loved their parents to the same degree,” Linda Booth said. “They deeply wanted to care for their parents.”

Dr. Booth began talking to patients and teamed up with his patient and friend, Eula Carlos, to open a hospice practice. At first it was hard to convince doctors that they couldn’t always “pull a miracle out of a bag” and cure a terminally ill patient, Booth said. “But once you got doctors to understand they were not giving up on a patient but helping them in that last phase

Making A Difference of life, they opened their billfolds and gave and gave,” to have the hospice center open, she said. “Some people are only healed after death,” she said. Many people are unsure of what hospice is exactly. Sandy Springs-based Visiting Nurse Health Services, a nonprofit health care organization of which Hospice Atlanta is an affiliate, states hospice is “a concept of care that emphasizes quality rather than quantity of life.” The care extends to families as well as patients. Without hospice care, families can sometimes get “caught up” in the care of a dying family member instead of spending the final months sharing memories, holding hands and being with each other, Booth said. Her husband wanted to give families that special time together. “[Death] is just another phase of life,” she said. Dr. Booth had two strokes and battled cancer, but still kept “trucking along,” she said. After the couple retired in 2004 to South Carolina, he and another doctor

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Making a Difference | 9

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opened a free clinic for underprivileged people. “He truly believed everyone should leave the world a little better than they

found it,” Linda Booth said. “And he definitely did.” Dr. Booth died June 18 – at the hospice he helped create. Linda Booth said her husband was a very religious man who looked for signs on what to do. One day he told her that God told him he was “coming home.” “He said he wanted to collect his soft landing,” she said. An air ambulance brought him from South Carolina to Hospice Atlanta, to where it all began and to where it would also end. Hospice Atlanta, located on Park Vista Drive, includes residential care, for those who may not be able to care for someone in their home, where Dr. Booth spent his last days. He was able to hug a nurse he hired 20 years ago and share memories with the hospital staff he had worked with for so many years. Family and friends came to visit him and hug, cry and laugh as he was cared for in the facility he helped build. SPECIAL “We received for a short time From left, Linda Booth, Kimberly Booth the love, comfort and peace you Rimmer and the late Dr. Authur Booth, who get from being in the center,” Linwill be honored along with three others, at da Booth said. “He truly closed the a gala and fundraiser on Oct.27 to celebrate Hospice Atlanta Center’s 20th anniversary. circle.”

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10 | Commentary

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Opinion /How can we help chronically failing schools? In November, Georgia voters will decide Gov. Nathan Deal’s “Opportunity School District” plan for state takeover of public schools deemed chronically failing. Reporter Newspapers asked state Rep. Tom Taylor (R-Dunwoody), who backs OSD, and state Sen. Elena Parent (D-Atlanta), who opposes it, for their arguments. For more about the OSD plan, see the Fall 2016 Education Guide in this issue.

OSD M EANS ‘ LO CALLY O WNED ’ SCHO O L IM PR O VEM ENTS

O S D’S ‘T R US T US ’ P L A N I G NO R ES FUNDI NG , TR A I NI NG

BY REP. TOM TAYLOR

BY SEN. ELENA PARENT

In August, some Georgia students began a new school year with unrestrained excitement, knowing that education provides boundless potential to make their dreams a reality. Parents watched their kids board school buses, entrusting the future of those who are most precious to them, their children, to dedicated educators and administrators. However, thoughts of limitless possibility do not reach all of Georgia’s children. This year, approximately 68,000 Georgia students had to take their seats in schools plagued by years of underachievement and failing performance because they live in certain attendance zones or ZIP codes. At these schools, abysmal test scores, declining student achievement, and poor graduation rates don’t go unnoticed by students, their parents and the community. Yet these children are trapped, forced to endure the inadequacies of failing schools, without the financial means or institutional options to choose another path. As a Georgia citizen and legislator, I feel responsible to these students and their parents. It is unacceptable to continue to hand over precious taxpayer funds to schools where failure has become the norm, knowing that these students must endure years of subpar instruction or drop out. This November, Georgians will vote on the Opportunity School District (OSD) amendment to the Georgia Constitution, a giant step toward making success possible for all students. Passed with bipartisan support in the Georgia legislature, the OSD will finally allow for state intervention in persistently failing schools, those with three-plus years of failing performance. The OSD allows for the state to partner with local communities to implement fresh approaches at these schools, approaches uniquely tailored to those students’ needs. Moreover, it provides intensive turnaround support to transform schools into environments where children are eager to be and where they know the education they receive helps them build happy, successful lives. As an ardent supporter of local control, I am a firm believer that government that is closest to the people governs most effectively and efficiently. However, when local situations become desperate, we need to pledge community—Georgia—support. By engaging parents and community leaders in turnaround processes for schools, OSD would assure improvements have the best chance to be “locally owned” and take root. Our state constitution guarantees public education for all of Georgia’s children. Greater than 50 percent of Georgia’s budget is appropriated to public education each year. Unfortunately, many DeKalb County schools could be the poster child for a status quo of failure. Today, only one-third of Georgia students read at grade level. Ignoring our failing schools and accepting the status quo isn’t an option. It would be a mistake just to continue to direct more funds to failing operations and expect new and better results. I encourage those who think that poverty is the issue and that more funding is the solution to know there are schools with high poverty that have high achievement. They are doing something right. Failing schools impact all Georgians. By passing the OSD amendment in November, voters will send a clear message that we can and must do better in Georgia. The future of our students and our state depends on it.

We have a problem with education in this state. We are failing many of our students, who leave unprepared for college, for tech schools, for life as an adult. It isn’t acceptable, and something needs to be done. We agree on the problem. Where we disagree is the solution. The argument for the Opportunity School District (OSD) is simple. Local school districts have run schools that have failed too many children, and the state should intervene if they can’t get their acts together. But intervene how? The OSD constitutional amendment sets up a school district that would be entirely controlled by one superintendent appointed by the governor. There won’t be any school board. The public won’t have the opportunity to vote this superintendent out of office. This gives a lot of potential for unfettered change, but it also means the public has no assurance about what the path forward will be for these schools. “Trust us” is the message. But has the state shown itself to be worthy of that trust when it comes to education? If one examines the list of schools that would currently be eligible for takeover if the constitutional amendment passes, one immediately notices something they share in common: They are all in high-poverty areas. We know that poor children often don’t get the same educational resources wealthier students do, even within the same district. And that’s not even mentioning burdens many poor children bring with them when they arrive at school every day: food insecurity, less access to health and dental care, transience, less parental availability. But are these factors discussed by the Opportunity School District legislation? No. Further, allies of the OSD have shown little interest in discussing the fact that the state has underfunded education for years. For many, that makes the “trust us” nature of the proposal unappealing. Supporters of OSD point to New Orleans, where the state similarly took control following Hurricane Katrina in 2005. Georgia does not propose to take over almost an entire district or eliminate attendance zones, as was done in New Orleans. The OSD is therefore more similar to efforts in Tennessee, Michigan and the rest of Louisiana, where the results have been lackluster. If we are going to have a systematic, focused plan for improving education in all of our schools, especially those that are failing, we need to stop chasing the latest fads—tons of testing, “school choice,” giving families public money to attend private schools, or believing in the magic of anything called a “charter.” These are all Band-Aids for a problem that cries out for real system-wide reform. What we need is a reinvigorated, talented teaching and administration force coming out of education schools that are first-rate and difficult to get into—which is not what we have today. We need to treat teaching like the critical profession it is and make sure we are attracting our best and brightest to the profession. We need the resources to get every child the support he or she needs to be a success in life. If we were serious about improving education in Georgia, we would stop offering up platitudes and instead focus on what we know works. BK


SEPTEMBER 16 - 29, 2016

Commentary | 11

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Tuck, tuck, loose? I’m not exactly fashion-forward. My wardrobe is basically dictated by what I can find that fits me and is on sale, so it’s a limited collection. But there’s a trend I’ve noticed while window-shopping during lunchtime, and in fact, it’s been around and persistently gaining momentum for the last few years. It’s the half-tuck. You might know it by another name, as it’s the style formally known as the front-tuck. You see, once upon a time, there were two ways to wear a shirt: 1) Tucked-in, or 2) Not. Then a new fashion crept upon the scene, persistently gaining momentum, until it earned its own name, i.e., the front-tuck. The front-tuck is a somewhat self-explanatory style that involves wearing a loose shirt and tucking-in only the front of it. The front-tuck has a sister called the side-tuck, which is what happens when only one-half of a buttoned-down shirt is tucked-in. Then the Tuck family grew and all kinds of tucks were born: the sidetuck, the back-tuck, the casual-tuck, the tight-tuck, the loose-tuck, the twist-n-tuck, the wrap-n-tuck. And, as often happens in large families, people started calling these tucklings by the same name. So the front-tuck is also called the half-tuck or the casual-tuck, which leaves the half-tuck with nothing to be called but the half-half-tuck, or the full gainer. It took me a while to catch on. For the longest time, I noticed the “J. Crew” catalog models wearing their tops only partly tucked, and I actually thought they were advertising their belts. But let’s get back to the front-tuck/ half-tuck, remembering all the while, of course, that I am not a stylist — I only watch them on YouTube. So I am not doling out fashion advice, I am merely passing along what I have gleaned. My understanding is that this sassy, part-in, part-out, noncommittal tuck

is designed to give your shirt a split personality (kind of like Superman when he takes off his glasses) by making it look professional in the front and all crazy in the back. If you do it right, Robin Conte is a writer you have and mother of four who a neatly lives in Dunwoody. She tucked bit of can be contacted at shirt somerobinjm@earthlink.net. where along the front of your jeans and a free-flowing fiesta of fabric elsewhere, which announces to everyone that you are NOT a geek, but a slave to fashion. You might be wondering, how much tuck does a person tuck if a person could half-tuck? Rest assured that you can Google “mastering the half-tuck” and find a plethora of internet tutorials on how to achieve this casual, carefree look. If, however, you google “backtuck,” you will find videos of a gymnastic move. It doesn’t work on me. I’m either allin or all-out. Oh, I tried. I watched the tutorials and worked with my forefinger and my cotton-blend fabric, spending way more time dressing myself than truly necessary, in an attempt to make my shirt display just the right amount of attitude. But I never arrived at “jaunty.” I only accomplished “disheveled.” I might make a belt-wink with my shirt, but that ends up sloppy, too. So I’ve concluded that until this fashion trend plays out, I’ll just stick with dresses.

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12 | Community

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SEPTEMBER 16 - 29, 2016

Community | 13

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Restaurant work halted after ‘White House’ is torn down Continued from page 1

BK

city told him last month he would need to reapply for zoning for his project. By tearing down the house without a demolition permit, the current zoning and plans for the project were void, according to the Community Development Department. Located just off the thriving Dresden Drive corridor, the one-story White House at 2536 Caldwell Road was rezoned by the city last year to allow a restaurant by Chef Scott Serpas. The restaurant is called Dixie Moon. Serpas, a Brookhaven resident, is a renowned chef known for Serpas True Food in Atlanta’s Old Fourth Ward. Rybert said the floor, walls and beams of the house were infested with termites and there was no way the contractor could build using the rotten wood. He said a city building inspector was called to the site to look at the walls and agreed the wood was rotten. “We all agreed we couldn’t build on rotten wood,” Rybert said in an interview. “So we tore the walls down in preparation for new wood.” A July 7 email exchange between city building official Paul Ivey and Community Development Director Ben Song, however, indicates only a single beam had termite damage. “The contractor asked David [Smith, city building inspector] if he could reuse a particular beam, a double 2X10 adjacent to and parallel to the back side of the front porch. The answer was basically ‘No,’ as David had quickly determined that the beam was so heavily damaged by termites that it had no structural integrity,” Ivey wrote in an email to Song that was obtained through a request under the Open Records Act. “In fact, David said that he was surprised to get such a question from a licensed contractor who should have had enough experience to already know the answer to his question. No termite damage was observed by David in the remaining floor joists, the walls, or the roof structure, which the plans showed were to remain and be reused,” Ivey’s email states. Rybert denied that only one beam was infested. “It was the walls as well as the floor joints and beams. It was the entire framing,” he said. “We left the original foundation in place ... we’re going to build the same size and design, but with good wood versus rotten wood.” Song noted in an Aug. 11 email to City Manager Christian Sigman that the house and property were rezoned in 2015 and a land disturbance permit was issued on May 23, 2016. On July 1, the city learned the house was demolished. The house was considered a nonconforming structure and city ordinance prohibits enlarging, expanding, moving or alter-

LEFT, SPECIAL; RIGHT, DYANA BAGBY

At left, the building known as the “Little White House,” which served as a “City Hall” when Brookhaven first incorporated, was recently torn down, right, without a demolition permit, in order to build a restaurant.

ing in any manner that increases the degree of nonconformity. Once the existing structure was demolished, the nonconforming or “grandfathering” designation no longer applied because the structure no longer existed, Song said. Any new structure must meet the requirements of the BrookhavenPeachtree Overlay District, he said, and new, single-story buildings are not allowed to be built in the Overlay District. City Attorney Chris Balch issued a memo to Sigman and the City Council

saying that if a new single-story building is allowed to be constructed on the site, that “places the Overlay District, and perhaps the entire Zoning Code, in jeopardy of being found invalid because the city would have ignored its own code and state law.” The White House served in 2012 as a kind of City Hall for Brookhaven’s new city government. “I remember, I let them use it for free,” Rybert said of the history of the house. He also said the house is not be-

ing changed in any way other than the use of new wood. “It’s going to look exactly the same,” Rybert said. “We left the foundation ... it still has the same bones.” Serpas said he and Rybert have been trying to build the restaurant at the location for nearly four

years. “And it’s been nothing but trials and tribulations” from the city, he said. Serpas said he has reached out “time and time again” to the city for help, but to no avail. “They’re forcing our hand,” he said. “There has been nothing but roadblocks, there is no leadership. It’s ridiculous and very frustrating. And I live in Brookhaven, I’m part of the fabric of the community. I’m just dumbfounded. I don’t know what to say anymore.”

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Parking may be issue keeping locked-room entertainment business closed BY DYANA BAGBY dyanabagby@reportnewspapers.net

Parking, or lack of it, appears to be at the crux of the issue keeping an entertainment business from opening on Dresden Drive. Time to Escape, an entertainment business where customers try to escape a locked room in under an hour, remains closed after the city in July abruptly withheld a certificate of occupancy for the business and asked a judge for help determining whether it should be considered a “retail business” under the city’s zoning ordinances. Time to Escape was set to open in July at 1441 Dresden Drive, also known as Village Park at Brookhaven. Village Park is where the popular Haven Restaurant & Bar and Valenza Italian Restaurant are the anchor businesses. Brad Hutchins of Weissman Nowack Curry & Wilco is the attorney for Dan Cleveland, owner of Time to Escape. He said the city has put his client in a “weird situation.” “The bottom line is my client needs to open,” Hutchins said. “He spent $80,000 building out the event space and people are clamoring to use it.” On July 21, Michel Arnette sent an

email to city Development Director Ben Song questioning the zoning for Time to Escape. Song then stopped the process of issuing the certificate of occupancy, according to information obtained through a request under the Open Records Act. Arnette, owner of Haven and Valenza, said it was his understanding the second floor of 1441 Dresden Drive, where Time to Escape is located, was only to be used for office space. That way, he said, employees and customers for those businesses would only need parking between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., and the entire parking lot behind the building would be available for customers of his ground-floor restaurants coming for dinner. “The big question actually is what kind of business use is Time to Escape,” Arnette said. “I brought that question up to the city and they decided to hold the [certificate of occupancy].” Parking along the thriving Dresden Drive corridor packed with restaurants and local businesses has long been an issue for the city as people flock to the area. Some people have resorted to parking in nearby neighborhoods, angering residents and leading to “no parking” signs posted throughout the

07-29-15_PerimeterPediatricDentistryFinal_Layout 1 7/27/15 9:18 AM Page 1

DYANA BAGBY

Owner Dan Cleveland’s entertainment business, Time to Escape, located on Dresden Drive, has been unable to open, possibly due to lack of parking.

area. Hutchins said Cleveland has signed a lease to use 17 spaces at an off-site parking lot, but that still has not resolved the issue. Arnette said he feels Cleveland is a victim in the ongoing confusion, but he added that the retail businesses at 1441 Dresden Drive are also victims because

there is not enough parking. “One thing I can tell you is that we have been at full capacity with retail and office,” Arnette said. Hutchins said the city has the authority to define unclear zoning regulations and it wasn’t necessary to ask a judge for guidance.

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BK


SEPTEMBER 16 - 29, 2016

Planning Commission defers MARTA redevelopment vote Continued from page 1

BK

Community | 15

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a special land use permit to construct an eight-story office building standing at 125 feet, more than the allowed 100 feet. Commissioners said they wanted several more answers from MARTA and Brookhaven City Center Partners, the developers for the project, on such issues as traffic mitigation and phasing of the project. Commissioners said they also wanted more time to digest and combine last-minute conditions made by city staff, MARTA and community members. The next meeting is set for Oct. 5. Amanda Rhein, senior director of transit-oriented development and real estate for MARTA, said the commission’s decision was disappointing because MARTA is ready to move forward on the “milestone” project. “But I think the request is reasonable, and appreciate the opportunity to work out issues with staff and the community,” she said. The proposed mixed-use development at the Brookhaven-Oglehtorpe station that borders Apple Valley Road, Dresden Drive and North Druid Hills Road includes a 125room hotel, 547 residential units, nearly 56,000 square feet in retail space, 200,000 square feet of office space as well as a small town center park on an approximate 15acre site. MARTA wants to use the massive parking lot that sits mostly empty to build the mixed-use development as a way to boost ridership and raise revenue. The commission also wanted to give MARTA time to answer any outstanding questions from homeowners about the development. The Brookhaven Fields Civic Association, Brookhaven Peachtree Community Alliance and the Fernwood Homeowners Association have stated their support for the project as long as it meets numerous conditions. Commissioner Bert Levy said he wanted to know why MARTA wanted “to put so much in this space?” “That’s the biggest question the community wants to know,” he said. Art Lomenick, speaking for the developers, asked if Levy was speaking for all or parts of the community. He was answered by a loud “All!” from many in the crowd. “This is an unusual corridor because there is so much residential,” Lomenick said. “But then you have Peachtree. That’s why we worked hard. We don’t think we’re putting a lot on it ... we really don’t think we’re putting enough.” Mickey Roberts, president of the Fernwood Park HOA, said he was pleasantly surprised to learn during the meeting that MARTA appeared to be agreeing with much of the requests made by community members. The Fernwood HOA is a group of 72 residences located across Apple Valley

Road from the proposed project. “They really seemed … for the most part to accept our conditions,” he said. “In Fernwood, we’re all really worried about the traffic … but they say they will meet all guidelines.” Among the requests the Fernwood HOA and other community members made to MARTA as part of its conditions to support the project, and that were agreed to by MARTA, include installing a sound barrier next to the planned food court to protect the neighborhoods from noise and that there be no music after 10 p.m. The HOAs and other residents also wanted more specific design plans for the proposed 8-story office building, standing at 125 feet and fronting Peachtree Road, that they say will likely become the “iconic image of Brookhaven.” Jack Honderd of the BPCA, who led the design and rezoning for Brookhaven Village on Dresden Drive and is an architect, praised public input on the project. He also credited MARTA for working with the community. More than 20 community meetings have been held since February. But more information was needed on the planned office building, he said. “This is arguably the most important block in Brookhaven. The office building will be a signature building and likely the iconic image of Brookhaven,” he said. “This design needs to be thoroughly vetted before granting a SLUP.” Jessica Hill, attorney for the project, said the developers want to build an all-glass office building, but currently that design is not allowed in the Brookhaven-Peachtree Overlay District. She said plans are for MARTA to ask for a variance after the rezoning request is approved which will allow for more public input into the project. “The public will be involved … and the neighborhoods will get another bite at the apple because we will go through the variance process,” Hill said. MARTA also agreed to conduct a parking study to ensure that 560 parking spaces for its patrons is enough to handle the new development. A community request that a citizen review board remain in place after construction begins and during the development project was also agreed to by MARTA. City officials are going to determine how best that board can be established before the Oct. 5 meeting. Other community demands included wanting more information about sewer capacity. DeKalb County is responsible for the sewers. “We’re not NIMBYs,” said Brookhaven Heights resident Bill Roberts. “We would just like to see this be better. This is an iconic project … and if we do it right, it will be wonderful. If we do it wrong, it will be a 99year mistake.”

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16 | Out & About

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BROOKHAVEN

Ultimately, it’s your experience that matters. To be sure, we’re proud of our 28 years of experience in senior living. But, to us, what really matters is your experience at our communities. We do everything with that idea clearly in mind. So, go ahead, enjoy yourself with great social opportunities and amenities. Savor fine dining every day. And feel assured that assisted living services are always available if needed. We invite you to experience The Piedmont for yourself at a complimentary lunch and tour. Please call 404.381.1743 to schedule.

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BUCKHEAD

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SANDY SPRINGS

PERFORMING ARTS

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BOOK SALE

Saturday, Oct. 1, 1-2 p.m. Capitol City Opera’s Outreach for Children presents “The Billy Goats Gruff,” a 40-minute opera set to music by Mozart, Rossini and Donizetti, which takes a familiar story and adds an anti-bullying message, promoting kindness. $10 per person. Show ideal for pre-K through 5th grade. Church of the Atonement, 4945 High Point Rd., Sandy Springs, 30342. Visit: ccityopera. org or call 678-522-4338 for tickets or for further information.

Thursday, Sept. 22, 1-4 p.m. Friends of the Dunwoody Library hold a book sale, with opening hours for members only. Free admission. Public is welcome from 4-8 p.m., and also on Sept. 23 and Sept. 24 from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday, Sept. 26 is Bag Day, from 10 a.m. until 8 p.m. 5339 Chamblee-Dunwoody Rd., Dunwoody, 30338. Call 770-512-4640 with questions.

JAZZ NIGHT Saturday, Oct. 1, 8-10 p.m. Oglethorpe University presents an evening of jazz, blues and funk with pianist Joe Alterman, featuring the Jazz Orchestra Atlanta. General admission, $20 at the door and online. Conant Performing Arts Center, 4484 Peachtree Rd., NE, Brookhaven, 30319. For details, go to: calendar.oglethorpe.edu, email: conant@oglethorpe.edu or call 404-504-3435.

ZYDECO T Saturday, Oct. 1, 8-11 p.m. Atlanta’s hometown Zydeco T plays classics sung in Creole French, contemporary standards and original material. No partner necessary. All ages welcome. Food for sale. Free dance lesson 7-8 p.m. $18; $5 students; $14 active military. Dorothy Benson Center, 6500 Vernon Woods Dr., Sandy Springs, 30328. Visit: aczadance.org, call 877-338-2420 or email: info@aczadance. org to find out more.

WARBIRD WEEKEND Saturday, Sept. 24, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. A squadron of World War II fighter aircraft descends upon DeKalb-Peachtree Airport! Program celebrates 75th anniversary of the American Volunteer Group, nicknamed the “Flying Tigers.” Free admission. Parking, $10. Continues Sept. 25, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. NOT an air show; display, rides and history only. 2000 Airport Rd., Atlanta, 30341. For additional information, go to: atlantawarbirdweekend.com or call 404202-9348.

PLAY GOLF Tuesday, Sept. 27, 8 a.m.-1 p.m. Play some golf and support the Riverwood International Charter School’s Junior football program. Shotgun start followed by lunch at 12 p.m. $125 per player; $500 foursomes; lunch only, $50. North Fulton Golf Course, 216 West Wieuca Rd., Atlanta, 30342. Register or see details: jrraidergolftourney.com. Call Rob Drew at 404-317-2800 with questions.

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SEPTEMBER 16 - 29, 2016

Tuesday, Sept. 27, 10 a.m. Check out the 57th annual American Association of University Women’s Book Fair at Perimeter Mall. Event runs during mall hours, and continues through Oct. 2. Thousands of gently used books at bargain prices. At Macy’s court, 4400 AshfordDunwoody Rd., Dunwoody, 30346. Call Sylvia Goodyear at 404-313-0063 or go to: aauwroswell.wordpress.com to learn more.

LEARN SOMETHING! DOMINIC CROSSAN Friday, Sept. 23, 6:30-9 p.m. Sandy Springs Christian Church welcomes Dominic Crossan, an Irish-American Biblical scholar, author and speaker on Friday for one lecture, dinner and book signing. Continues Sept. 24, 9 a.m.-1 pm., with two lectures and breakfast. $40 for three lectures; $50 for lectures and meals. 301 Johnson Ferry Rd., NW, Sandy Springs, 30328. Register by calling 404-2562582 or going to: sandyspringscc.org.

PLANTS & ANIMALS Saturday, Sept. 24, 10-10:45 a.m. Naturalist Megan Clark leads a class on the adaptation of

plants. Geared for youngsters ages 4-12. Participants spend time outdoors and learn about nature. Includes a hike, investigation and games. On Oct. 1, learn about animals. Dress for the weather. Early session for ages 4-6; 11-11:45 a.m. for ages 7-9; 12-12:45 p.m. for ages 10-12. $5 per class. Lost Corner Preserve, 7300 Brandon Mill Rd., Sandy Springs, 30328. Register: registration.sandyspringsga.gov. Call 770-730-5600 for further information.

HEALTH SCREENINGS

Food Trucks! Festivities! Flicks! 6:00 PM • Movies start at Dark Thursday, Sept. 29, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. The Dorothy Benson Senior Center hosts its annual Health Fair. Check non-fasting cholesterol and glucose, blood pressure, BMI, coronary risk, osteoporosis, cancer risk. Free. For those 55 years and older. Call 404-613-4900 to schedule an appointment. 6500 Vernon Woods Dr., Sandy Springs, 30328.

TINNITUS SUPPORT Saturday, Oct. 1, 10 a.m.-12 p.m. Dr. Sara Propes presents “Living with Tinnitus,” which explores how tinnitus impacts lives and how to continue actively participating in daily activities. Free. Family and friends welcome. To learn more, contact Erica: elcatl@aol.com. Dunwoody Branch Library, in the Meeting Room, 5339 Chamblee-Dunwoody Rd., Dunwoody, 30338.

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Out & About | 17

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Sandy Springs United Methodist Church Activities Center Lawn 85 Mt. Vernon Highway & Sandy Springs Circle Bring blanket, lawn chair, picnic, or buy food on-site... then enjoy a fun-filled evening watching movies on a giant 30-foot outdoor screen.

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September 23 - 25, 2016

Bring your friends and family to enjoy a weekend full of exciting Greek dancing, delicious food and pastries, Cathedral tours, children’s activities, cooking demonstrations along with fantastic shopping and so much more!

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Greek Orthodox Cathedral of the Annunciation 2500 Clairmont Rd NE, Atlanta, GA 30329


18 | Out & About

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Fill up on local food festivals Tuck in your napkins and loosen your belts. Food festival season is here, with everything from Greek to kosher barbecue on the menu, along with the massive Taste of Atlanta fest. The following is a guide to some major regional food festivals serving up goodies in coming weeks.

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Friday, Sept. 23, 5-11 p.m. Enjoy Greek food specialties, as well as music and dancing, shopping, a children’s tent and cathedral tours. $5 admission; those 12 and under, free. Continues Sept. 24, 11 a.m.-11 p.m. and Sept. 25, 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Free parking and shuttle buses nearby. Greek Orthodox Cathedral, 2500 Clairmont Rd., Atlanta, 30329. Questions? Visit: atlantagreekfestival.org or call 404-633-5870. Sunday, Sept. 25, 11 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Sample barbeque from more than 25 competing teams, and watch local first responders face off in the eats arena at this 4th annual event. Live music. Free admission. $1 tasting tickets. Brook Run Park, 4770 N. Peachtree Rd., Dunwoody, 30338. For additional details, visit: theatlantakosherbbq.com or call 770-580-3897.

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Saturday, Oct. 1, 5-9 p.m. Try food and drinks from some of Chamblee’s best eateries, groove to local bands and peruse crafts from local vendors at this 10th annual event. Free admission. $1 tasting tickets. Park at Chamblee Plaza; trolley service to event at Peachtree Rd. and Broad St., 30341. To learn more, go to: tasteofchamblee.net or call 770-986-5010.

BROOKHAVEN CHILI COOKOFF Saturday, Oct. 8, 12:306 p.m. Dig into chili and Brunswick stew from more than 75 local restaurants

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SEPTEMBER 16 - 29, 2016

Out & About | 19

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and amateur teams, in addition to live music, adult beverages, a kids’ zone and cornhole. Tickets, $10-$20. Kids under 12, free. Pets allowed on leash. No outside food or drink. Brookhaven Park, 2660 Osborne Rd., Brookhaven, 30319. For information, visit: brookhavenchilicookoff.com or call 404-456-4655.

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Saturday, Oct. 22, 12-7 p.m. Taste dishes from more than 90 metro Atlanta restaurants. Check out cooking and bartending demonstrations, a silent auction, as well as a Family Food Zone and a VIP Grand Tasting Experience. Continues Oct. 23, 12-6 p.m. General admission, $25; VIP, $75. No pets. Midtown at Tech Square, Atlanta, 30309. Find out more: tasteofatlanta.com or call 404-875-4434.

Access all of our communities online Sandy Springs Reporter Dunwoody Reporter

Buckhead Reporter Brookhaven Reporter www.ReporterNewspapers.net

Consumer Demonstration: Oct 1st

Indulge your culinary passions 7455 Trowbridge Rd, NE | Sandy Springs, GA 30328

SEWELL © Copyright 2008 Signage designs and drawings are the sole property of DeNyse Signs, Inc., and may not be reproduced, published, changed or used in any way without written permission and consent. In addition, all ideas, contents of

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Date

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06.17.2008

Property Name & Address

Project Manager

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Sewell Appliance 7455 Trowbridge Road Sandy Springs, Ga

Richard Swartz

Management Company

The Griffin Company

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HM JC

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20 | Community

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South Fork Conservancy starts capital campaign, paths get $500k The South Fork Conservancy is kickphilanthropist Diana Blank has visiting off a $2 million capital campaign ed the urban green space. “She saw long with the announcement of a $500,000 ago what a difference this very generous grant for an “iconic” pedestrian bridge grant might make.” and other improvemenets linking BuckKey South Fork supporters heard the head and DeKalb County trails. news at an August 18 event hosted by capThe conservancy creates trails along the South Fork of Peachtree Creek, which runs between Buckhead and Emory University. Its plan is to link into the PATH400 and Atlanta BeltLine trails. The cities of Brookhaven, Dunwoody and Sandy Springs have plans to plug into those trail networks. In addition, Brookhaven’s planned Peachtree Creek Greenway park and trail system, on the creek’s North Fork, would SOUTH FORK CONSERVANCY connect to the South Fork sysThe walking bridge on the Cheshire Farm Trail crossing tem as well. In August, the conservancy Peachtree Creek under the new Ga. 400 flyover ramp. announced that the Kendeda Fund has pledged $500,000 toward the ital campaign co-chairs Billy Hall and capital campaign, called “Revealing the Joni Winston. Creek.” The conservancy’s current open trails “You have to experience the South include the Confluence, Cheshire Farm Fork Trails to really grasp their imporand Meadow Loop trails in Buckhead, tance,” said South Fork co-founder Saland Zonolite Park in DeKalb County. For ly Sears in the press release, noting that details, visit southforkconservancy.org.

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SEPTEMBER 16 - 29, 2016

Classifieds | 21 Classifieds | 21

www.ReporterNewspapers.net

SERVICES AVAILABLE Tranquil Waters Lawn Care – Pressure washing, flower beds, trimming, tree/shrubs installation, hauling of debris, pinestraw & mulch. Free estimates. Discounts for Seniors & Veterans. No contracts needed. Call Mike 678-662-0767 or Andrew 678-672-8552.

Home Tending - Regular inspections of your unoccupied property. Call Charles, 404-229-0490. Driveways & Walkways – Replaced or repaired. Masonry, grading, foundations repaired, waterproofing and retaining walls. Call Joe Sullivan 770-616-0576.

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22 | Public Safety

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WINGS | BEER | SOUTHERN SPIRITS | MUSIC

Police Blotter / Brookhaven From police reports dated Aug. 29 through Sept. 11. The following information was pulled from Brookhaven’s Police-2-Citizen Portal Event Search website and is presumed to be accurate. „„On Sept. 1, Brookhaven Police arrested

SEPTEMBER 25, 2016

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„„1500 block of

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„„2600 block of Buford Hwy. – On Aug.

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B U R G L A RY „„1000 block of Lenox Park Blvd. – On

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OT H E R

2400 block of Briarcliff Rd. – On Aug. 30, report of check forgery.

„„

„„2300 block of

N. Druid Hills Rd. – On Aug. 29, report of theft.

3300 block of Buford Hwy. – On Aug. 30, report of damage to property.

„„

„„3500 block of Buford Hwy. – On Aug.

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ATL A N TA PO L ICE A RREST SUSP EC T IN B U CKHEAD AND BR OOK H AV EN BURGLA RIES, H OME INVASIO NS Atlanta police have arrested a man suspected in a Buckhead home invasion and two burglaries in which police said he used a replica AK-47 assault rifle. Antwain Wolfork, 21, of 1431 Blyss Ave. NW, was apprehended by the APD’s Fugitive Unit in the early morning hours of Sept. 8 and has been charged with one count of home invasion and two counts of burglary with intent to commit a felony. “It was discovered that he used a very detailed, but fake replica of an AK-47 to commit these crimes,” according to an APD press release. Wolfork also faces charges in a violent Brookhaven home invasion on Aug. 3 in the 1700 block of Clairmont Way in which he shot the suspect in the arm. APD Public Information OfA man who used a replica AK-47 assault rifle has ficer Carlos Nino said Wolbeen arrested in connection with a Buckhead home invasion and two burglaries. fork faces charges of aggravated battery, armed robbery, burglary and possession of a weapon while committing a felony. “The way we tied him to the Atlanta incidents was through physical evidence found in his home,” Nino said. He declined to say what the evidence was. Nino said the Brookhaven suspect matched the description of the Buckhead suspect who could be seen on surveillance cameras in Buckhead. BK

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Publisher’s Note / Introducing Atlanta Senior Life Did you know that 10,000 Baby Boomers are turning 65 every day? I didn’t realize that so many members of the “Woodstock generation” were signing up for Medicare and Social Security already! That got us thinking about a local publishing opportunity geared toward this burgeoning segment of the population. With that in mind, we are pleased to announce that Springs Publishing LLC, parent company of Reporter Newspapers and Atlanta INtown, has acquired the local edition of Senior News of Georgia and will relaunch it as Atlanta Senior Life. The new monthly publication’s target audience is the flourishing 65+ active senior population, which is the metro area’s fastest-growing age group according to the Atlanta Regional Commission.

started the Brookhaven Reporter in 2009 and the Dunwoody Reporter the next year; Atlanta INtown was acquired in 2013. Combined free circulation for the Atlanta Senior Life will be similar in format to bi-weekly Reporter our other papers, with crisp graphic design and Newspapers and Steve Levene high quality, full color printing. It will have an the monthly Atlanta Founder & Publisher initial circulation of 20,000 copies, distributed to INtown is 97,000 Springs Publishing LLC selected locations where active seniors live, work, copies. volunteer and play in the north metro areas of Cobb, DeKalb and Fulton counties. Look for the inaugural issue of Atlanta Senior Life in October around your community or find the first Atlanta Senior Life represents our sixth digital edition online at www.atlantaseniorlife.com. community-oriented paper since the company was launched nearly 10 years ago with the Sandy As always, I welcome your feedback; please email Springs Reporter and Buckhead Reporter. We me at publisher@reporternewspapers.net. Atlanta’s 65+ population is a large and diverse market, with active adults who have the means and motivation to enjoy their lives. Atlanta Senior Life will provide these readers with fresh, timely and engaging information focused on where they live.

Coming in October: A new way to reach active seniors TECHNOLOGY

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By Thoma Special

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10,000

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is the fastest-growing age group in metro Atlanta

Projected increase in metro Atlanta’s 65+ population between 2010 and 2020 Net worth of 65+ households is 2.5 times the national average

Number of Baby Boomers in the U.S. who are turning 65 every day

For advertising and editorial information, call 404.917.2200 ext. 111

SOURCES: U.S. CENSUS, ATLANTA REGIONAL COMMISSION

Published by Springs Publishing LLC

6065 Roswell Road, Suite 225

Sandy Springs, GA 30328

Phone: 404-917-2200

Fax: 404-917-2201 BK


SPECIAL SECTION | SEPTEMBER 16-29, 2016

Fall 2016

EDUCATION GUIDE Theater offers a part in ‘the ultimate group project’

HIL MOSIER

Sam Reed, left, a student at The Galloway School in Sandy Springs, rehearses for “The Complete Works of William Shakespeare, Abridged,” in the school’s Chaddick Theater on Sept. 8. PHIL MOSIER

For some local high schoolers, plays really are the thing

Farm-to-cafeteria: Schools provide fresh local produce for lunch

BY DONNA WILLIAMS LEWIS

BY LESLIE JOHNSON

It says something about a high school class when a fire alarm goes off and nobody races gleefully for the door. Pace Academy theater teacher Sean Bryan said his “entire class moaned in great frustration” when a fire drill sounded during a recent acting class. His students were

doing their daily warmup — mimicking the leader of the moment in interpreting music through movement. “They were frustrated because they were having a blast,” Bryan said. On top of that, darn it, they had to put their shoes back on. See FOR on page 2

Here’s some food for thought: For thousands of metro Atlanta schoolchildren, the proverbial apple-a-day may come from just around the corner, thanks to a national farm-to-school initiative. In fact, healthy produce on the school lunch menu could be sprouting from as

close as a school garden that students help maintain and harvest, within a few hours’ drive on a Georgia farm or a stone’s throw regionally, in Florida or North Carolina. Since 2011, the school nutrition programs in the DeKalb and Fulton systems have participated in the National Farm to See FARM on page 14

TURNAROUND STRATEGIES Challenges for public schools

FAILING SCHOOLS Gov. Deal proposes state takeover

BACK-TO-SCHOOL COSTS Expect to pay more

Page 8

Page 9

Page 16


2 | Education Guide

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Curious. Caring. Collaborative. in five languages.

For some local high schoolers, plays really are the thing

A Continued from page 1

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Pace began offering Upper School acting classes for the first time with Bryan’s arrival last school year. It joins other local high schools in taking theater far beyond the realm of just an after-school activity. Theater programs are growing at some area schools, despite education’s love affair with STEM, a curriculum that focuses on science, technology, engineering and math. Schools such as North Springs Charter High School have jumped on the “Picking Up STEAM (STEM+ A for Arts)” train, with Travis Chapman working as their full-time coordinator on the trending national initiative. STEAM recognizes that technical success requires creativity and critical thinking skills best developed through exposure to the arts, Chapman said. Theater, for example, is the ultimate group project. “There are so many tasks to be done to get to the final product, which is opening night,” Bryan said. “We have technical students, musicians, actors, assistant directors ... Everyone can’t be Dorothy [in the “Wizard of Oz”], but we still need to find a crystal ball for the Wicked Witch of the West.” Megan Cramer, the new Upper Learning theater teacher at The Galloway

School, has worked as associate artistic director of New York City’s 52nd Street Project, a nonprofit that connects inner-city kids with theater professionals. She said students have told her theater enhanced their presentation skills and taught them a lot about themselves and others. “The students can come together to work on a project and be able to present it to human beings in a space and in a moment that they share together,” Cramer said, “That’s so rare right now.” And it’s valued. Upper Learning students can earn class credit for working on school shows, she said. David Gay, a 25-year teacher in his second year at Dunwoody High School, said his theater classes prepare students who want to become professionals, but offer something for everyone. “You can act, build a set, work on a light board or a sound board,” Gay said. “For some people, this is an outlet where they find acceptance, community and family.” Raina Williams was feeling her way as a new freshman at Pace last year when a friend talked her into auditioning for the musical “Legally Blonde.” “I froze and I freaked out,” Williams said. “I didn’t even go back the next day for

Myron Parker, North Springs Charter High School

Celine Lagrange, Riverwood International Charter School

“Honestly, I never intended to join my school theater department because I didn’t think it would benefit me in my film career. But after getting involved in the classes, I’ve learned that theater is the foundation of any form of acting. Through three years of active participation in the productions, I’ve obtained many skills I would never have been able to develop on my own, and have learned how to appreciate the craft on a much deeper level.”

“I enjoy taking part in theater for more than the fact that I love acting. In the beginning of my high school career, I was too scared to perform in front of others. Thanks to my experiences in theater my freshmen year, I grew more confident. Now I keep returning to perform at my high school because of all the friends I’ve made. Returning for a new production is like attending a family reunion.”


Education Guide | 3

SEPTEMBER. 16 - 29, 2016 ■ www.ReporterNewspapers.net

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B: Riverwood’s Chip Carter, left, and Joe Virgin rehearse for the show.

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C: Theater instructor Megan Cramer, center, directs Ellie Kaufman during “The Complete Works of William Shakespeare Abridged” rehearsal at The Galloway School on Sept. 8.

the second part of the audition.” Somehow, Bryan saw potential behind the panic and cast Williams in non-speaking roles in that musical and others. She’s also worked props. “I just fell in love with the singing, dancing and the whole backstage thing of being in musicals,” Williams said. “There are costume changes, props that need to be distributed, managers keeping you on task. It’s like magic. I don’t know how it happens.” Williams has landed her first speaking role in the play “A Piece of My Heart,” the production to be staged at Pace this fall, and said theater has helped her manage stress. “Anyone can do theater and everyone should,” she said. “It has made me a happier person because it’s kind of an alternative way to express how I feel. It’s really like, for

Raina Williams, Pace Academy “I do theater because I simply can’t stop doing theater. When I decided to become involved in theater last year, I pictured us running around the stage as wild animals or meditating to get into to character. But theater is not that abstract concept I had in my mind; it’s about portraying human emotions in the most realistic way possible. Once I realized the simplicity of it, theater became the avenue for my emotions. Having that release has made me a happier person and that — and the fact that it’s fun — is why I do theater.

potential. realized.

C me, uplifting.” Bryan said theater also forces students to develop empathy as they step into another character’s perspective. Jon Tyler Owens, who teaches theater at North Springs Charter High School, reflected on the intimacy of live theater. “When you’re in a room with a good actor of a good company of actors, it can be a transcending

watch your child do good things • Beginners (3-year-olds)

Continued on page 4

through 8th grade

Lawrence Nieves, The Galloway School

• Extended-day program available

“I’ve never seen a group of kids so singlehandedly devoted to helping create a show. From costuming, to stagecraft, lighting, directing, choreography and more, students all want to help, and Galloway provides the ability to try whatever we want.”

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Sarah Packman, Lovett School “By the end of a production, you are like a family with the other performers and you get to share that with the audience.”

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4 | Education Guide

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For some local high schoolers, plays really are the thing

D Continued from page 3

In July, students explored Glacier National Park during an Isdell Center for Global Leadership (ICGL) study tour. Photograph by Pace teacher Gus Whyte

big

We think Connecting learning to life at every level.

paceacademy.org/admissions

experience,” Owens said. “It can be kind of a game changer about how you view experiences, without the filter of a lens, which adds a separation.” Theater changed the game big-time for Galloway senior Isabella Swaak, who said she used to be “super shy.” “I felt like an outcast. I was taller than everyone, not as skinny as everyone,” she said. But after playing a sassy role in “The Little Mermaid” years ago, Isabella worked to take on some of the traits she admired about her character. She learned to love her body and became more self-confident, she said, stepping away from a recent rehearsal for “The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged).” At Dunwoody, Gay almost can’t talk about theater without bringing up DHS’ competitive speech team, which he started. “I tell students (speech) will change you,” said Gay, a “Triple-Diamond coach” in the

Reed Stewart, Holy Innocents’ Episcopal School “I started out in theater because I wasn’t very competitive in sports and I wanted to be involved in a community that included people from other grades. I fell in love with theater from the first rehearsal because it was an environment that I could truly be myself. I wasn’t afraid to act silly and let go because I was and still continue to be surrounded by people that accept me for who I am. I have never been an outspoken person or a public speaker, but on stage I am able to overcome my fear of public speaking and step into a character for hours at a time. “

E PHOTOS BY PHIL MOSIER; F, JAMES BARKER PHOTOGRAPHY

D: Dunwoody High School Music Director Mark Lamback, at piano, leads the school’s theater group through rehearsal of “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee” on Sept. 8. E: From left, Steff Rinzler, Isabella Swaak, top, Derrick Bass, and Cole Smith, right, practice during “The Complete Works of William Shakespeare Abridged” at The Galloway School on Sept. 8. F: Natalie Peek and Carlos Obregon get into character for Riverwood’s upcoming “Lend Me a Tenor” production. G: Chloe Kahn sings during rehearsal for Dunwoody High School’s play opening Oct. 20. H: Abby Vogelsang gives it her all in front of other Galloway theater students.

Blake Rosen, The Weber School “There is nothing as cathartic as live theatre. Engaging in an ensemble in every show makes me feel accepted for who I am, and working with the cast and crew at my high school provides unforgettable memories and learning experiences I will keep with me for the rest of my life.”


?

Education Guide | 5

SEPTEMBER. 16 - 29, 2016 ■ www.ReporterNewspapers.net

F

G

H National Speech & Debate Association. Senior Patrick Clinch joined the team last year and became a national qualifier in the finals for humorous interpretation. Clinch is one of the leaders of Dunwoody’s improv troupe, which performs monthly. He said theater has been a great way to burn off some of his pent-up energy, and it has made him feel confident about his ability to present and perform before audiences. “It can be difficult to be in high school, where there are a lot of social stratifications,” Clinch added. “Theater brings people together in a very unique way.” At North Springs, which has magnet programs in math/sciences and visual/ performing arts, Owens teaches an acting track and Joel King teaches a technical theater track. They stage three main productions a year. Their program’s motto: “We don’t do high school shows. We do professional shows with high school students.” They always do understudy shows of their productions, exposing more students to audiences. One of these shows became a defining moment for North Springs senior Myron Parker, who plays a slave named “Miles” in the PBS series “Mercy Street.”

Emily Brothman, North Springs Charter High School “The theater program offers me an opportunity for self-expression that I am not otherwise provided in school. The performing arts are truly amazing because they not only allow people to challenge their creativity and become open to new ideas, but also have fun while doing so.”

Parker said he started high school as a cocky film actor who didn’t think theater could do much for him. He signed up after he heard other actors talking about its benefits. By junior year he was getting lead roles in school plays “and not thinking about it hard,” Parker said. So he was stunned after he auditioned for a part in Henrik Ibsen’s play “Hedda Gabler” to find that not only was he cast as an understudy, it wasn’t even for a lead part. “I was very much devastated,” Parker said. “It was a really humbling experience.” But Parker said he “sucked it up,” and plunged into his character, “decoding” Ellert Lovborg until he understood him completely. In the end, the understudy show was “one of the most powerful performances that I’ve ever seen,” Parker said. “People in the audience were crying. That’s an experience I think I’ll take throughout my entire life.” His theater teacher, who studied Shakespeare in the United Kingdom as a Fulbright scholar, had always said he never wanted to teach high school students. But Owens’ need for a job coincided with an opening at North Springs five years ago. After a “horrible” first year, Owens said he has grown to appreciate a job he doesn’t plan to leave anytime soon. “There’s something really special about watching these kids develop,” he said. “Sometimes they make me so mad, but sometimes they make me so proud I’ve got tears in my eyes.”

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Natalie Peek, Riverwood International Charter School “Theater is the art of catharsis. To be submerged in a character allows one to learn about the human experience. Riverwood’s theater has always been a safe space at our school, with the actors, tech and our director. At the end of the day, it’s incredibly fun.”

love of learning starts here


6 | Education Guide

Facebook.com/TheReporterNewspapers â– twitter.com/Reporter_News

Celebrating the Present, Preparing for the Future At Trinity, students get to savor their childhood while also acquiring a deep academic foundation and developing responsibility, leadership, and a strong sense of self. Everything we do is designed to help children ages three through Sixth Grade flourish.

Local High School Theater Fall Playlist Pace Academy

The Westminster Schools

Trinity School is a magical place. Come see for yourself. Trinity School Open House Dates: 2016 October 26 | 9:30 AM November 15 | 9:30 AM December 8 | 9:30 AM

Sept. 29-30 and Oct. 1 at 7 p.m. Sept. 22 at 7 p.m. and Sept. 23 at 4 p.m. in the Pace Academy Fine Arts Center, 966 W. Paces Ferry Road NW.

in Kellett Theatre at the Broyles Arts Center on the Westminster campus Tickets: Free

Tickets: Free

2017 January 18 | 9:30 AM Reserve your spot today: 404-231-8118 trinityatl.org

Oct. 28-29 at 7 p.m. in Kellett Theatre at the Broyles Arts Center on the Westminster campus Tickets: Free

Nov. 10-12 at 7 p.m. and Nov. 13 at 2:30 p.m.

Riverwood International Charter School

in the Pace Academy Fine Arts Center, 966 W. Paces Ferry Road NW. Tickets: $20 adults; $10 students

North Springs Charter High School

dyslexia

Oct. 6, 7 and 8 at 7 p.m. and Oct. 9 at 3 p.m. in the school auditorium, 5900 Raider Drive NW Tickets: $15 adults; $10 students

Galloway School Sept. 29, 30, Oct 1, 6, 7 and 8 at 7:30 p.m. and Oct. 8 at 3 p.m. (understudy show) on the North Springs Main Stage Theatre, 7447 Roswell Road

Workshops

Parent Education Series, 2016-17 Swift School welcomes parents and community members to engage with top experts and school staff to become proactive and informed - as we educate our students to realize their full potential. Workshops are free, but registration is required. theswiftschool.org/parent-series

A holistic education for students with dyslexia

Tickets: $15 adults; $8 students Oct. 14 and Oct. 15 at 7 p.m. and Oct. 16 at 2 p.m.

Cyber Safety Tues., Oct. 4, 2016; 8:30 a.m.

in the Chaddick Center for the Arts on campus

21st Century Skills/ Competencies Tues., Nov. 1, 2016; 8:30 a.m.

Tickets: $10

Dunwoody High School

Executive Functioning & Working Memory Tues., Jan. 10, 2017; 7 p.m. Understanding Assessments Tues., Feb. 7, 2017; 8:30 a.m.

300 Grimes Bridge Rd. Roswell, Georgia 678.205.4988

Dec. 1, 2, 3, 8, 9, 10 at 7:30 p.m. on the North Springs Main Stage Theatre, 7447 Roswell Road, and Dec. 10 at 3 p.m. (understudy show) in the Black Box Theatre on campus Tickets: $15 adults; $8 students

Oct. 20, 21 at 7 p.m. in the Dunwoody High School Auditorium


Education Guide | 7

SEPTEMBER. 16 - 29, 2016 ■ www.ReporterNewspapers.net

Marist School

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Before Care Oct. 20 and 22 at 7:30 p.m. in Woodruff Auditorium on campus Tickets: $5

St. Pius X Catholic High School

Nov. 2, 3 and 4 at 7 p.m. Nov. 5 and 6 at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. in the Lademacher Performing Arts Center Tickets: $20 for adults; $15 for students

Atlanta Girls’ School K-12 Admissions Event Information can be found at www.wesleyanschool.org/admissions

Oct. 20, 21, 22 at 7 p.m. Oct. 23 at 2 p.m. in the Msgr. Terry Young Center Auditorium on campus Tickets: $7 Nov. 10, 11 and 12 at 7 p.m. in the Tom King Theater

Nov. 17 at 7 p.m. in the Msgr. Terry Young Center Auditorium on campus Tickets: $7 February 16-18, 24 and 25

The Lovett School

in the Tom King Theater

Holy Innocents’ Episcopal School Oct. 27, 28 and 29 at 7 p.m. in the Woodward Theater on campus Tickets: $10

Nov. 10, 11 and 12 at 7 p.m. Nov. 10, 11 and 12 at 7 p.m. in the Hendrix-Chenault Theater on campus Tickets: $10

Weber School

in the Fine Arts Building on the HIES campus. Tickets: $10

Holy Spirit Preparatory School

My History, My Power, My Legacy Nov. 6 and 7

Nov. 10, 11 and 12 at 6 p.m.

at The Southwest Arts Center, 915 New Hope Road , SW Atlanta

in the Upper School Auditorium at 4449 Northside Drive

Tickets: $10; free for students

Tickets: $10

Sources: Various schools

GAAn B’Ahava One of Ahavath Achim Synagogue’s new weekly Sunday programs as a part of the new religious school, Kesher@AA Two and three year-olds will develop their love for Jewish learning as they are empowered to explore, create, and dream through interactive learning methods. Gan means garden and is a place where our littlest sprouts get to grow their roots and begin their Jewish learning. Ahava means love and is the ethos of our early learning center at AA, guiding everything we do. For information on how to enroll, visit www. aasynagogue.org under Lifelong Learning or contact Robyn Faintich, Director of Education, at rfaintich@ aasynagogue.org


8 | Education Guide

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“The goal of early childhood education should be to activate the child’s own natural desire to learn.” PERKINS+WILL

Atlanta Public Schools Superintendent Meria Carstarphen at MLK Jr. Middle School.

Dr. Maria Montessori

Turnaround strategies

OPEN HOUSE Sunday, December 4, 1– 4 p.m.

Share in the Spirit Serving grades 7–12, Marist School provides an education where achievement exists within a spirit of humility and generosity. Students are challenged by an extensive college-preparatory curriculum while an array of extracurricular activities inspire exploration and uncover hidden talents. Through it all, students gain a unique strength of character and skill and a joy of serving others that prepares them to be compassionate, confident leaders.

Come visit to experience Marist’s spirit yourself. Learn more at marist.com

An Independent Catholic School of the Marist Fathers and Brothers

Superintendent Meria Carstarphen outlines challenges to come for Atlanta Public Schools BY COLLIN KELLEY Atlanta Public Schools Superintendent Meria Carstarphen said she expects the 2016-17 school year to be one of the system’s most challenging as it continues to rebuild from the cheating scandal and faces some of its facilities being taken over by the state for underperformance. When residents go to the polls in November, they will vote on creating the Opportunity School District (OSD), which would allow the state to take over chronically failing schools. There are more than 20 APS schools that fall into that designation. Carstarphen promised last year that she would make aggressive moves to transform APS, which include shuttering some schools and putting others under the management of charter school groups. She said that pay parity for educators, facility quality, security and working to turn around the overall culture of APS was part of the strategy. One thing is for sure: APS is not going back, but forward. “Perhaps the major problem with APS in the past is that it was not child centered, but adult oriented,” Carstarphen said. “There was so much bureaucracy, so much politics. We lost our core purpose.” Since her arrival two years ago, Carstarphen has spent much of her time on the job “rebuilding and fixing problems that were never addressed,” including a $30 million proposition to arrive at pay parity for teachers. Replacing teachers and administrators with the best and brightest has been a hallmark of Carstarphen’s time at APS. She said it’s all part of rebuilding APS’s integrity. “You can’t talk about the future if you don’t fix the past,” Carstarphen said. Carstarphen said she is hopeful that recent comments by Gov. Nathan Deal will keep APS schools out of state hands if the OSD measure passes. “Gov. Deal said meeting achievement targets is the fastest way to get off the OSD radar, but if a school district is showing progress, that might also prevent a takeover.” However, Carstarphen is also realistic. “We’re not going to hit those targets immediately,” she said. “You can’t make a 30-percentage point gain in test scores without cutting corners, and we’re not going back to those days.” Another significant change for APS is the creation of its own police force. Carstarphen said the police department was another component of shifting the culture at APS. “The idea is to rethink a school model that goes beyond physical safety and adds a component of emotional safety,” Carstarphen commented. “The concept is that the officers are not only enforcing laws, but counseling and mentoring children as well.” The new APS police force has a chief of police and 68 officers, who have been trained specifically by grade level, and will work with students to prevent bad behavior and decisions before they happen. “If we want to break the pampers to prison pipeline for black and brown kids, which is really an issue in APS, we have to have people who do the preventive work so the bad decisions never happen,” Carstarphen said. “I don’t want our kids to fear the police, I want them to respect police. They need to have a school environment where the police are seen as an ally and not an enemy.”


Education Guide | 9

SEPTEMBER. 16 - 29, 2016 ■ www.ReporterNewspapers.net

Voters to decide whether state should take over ‘failing’ schools BY DONNA WILLIAMS LEWIS Voters across Georgia soon will decide whether the state should be allowed to take control of chronically failing public schools. Under a proposed constitutional amendment on November ballots, schools that receive an “F” rating from the state Department of Education for three years in a row could be temporarily assigned to a new “Opportunity School District” (OSD). Already, there is a list of schools eligible for state takeover under Gov. Nathan Deal’s proposed plan. It currently includes 127 Georgia schools from 21 school systems. Two schools along metro Atlanta’s northern arc are on the list — DeKalb County’s Montclair and Woodward elementary schools, both lo-

state the authority to more effectively provide support and to remove barriers to students’ success. A group called Georgia Leads on Education is promoting the measure with a video that says it “preserves quality education for kids in good schools and creates new educational opportunity for less fortunate children who need it most.” But the amendment is vigorously opposed by some major teacher and parent organizations. The Georgia Association of Educators calls it a “serious executive over-reach by the governor,” saying the OSD threatens the stability of local schools and undermines local control of the community. The Georgia PTA sys the amendment is flawed

Montclair Elementary School in Brookhaven, considered a chronically failing school, is on the list for a state takeover.

cated in Brookhaven. Overall, about half of the schools eligible for takeover are in metro Atlanta, with 28 in DeKalb County, 22 in the city of Atlanta and 10 in south Fulton County. Several state charter schools in Atlanta and DeKalb are also on the list. Some schools on have closed or merged with others since the list was published. Deal’s proposal would allow the state to add up to 20 failing schools to the OSD each year, with a cap of no more than 100 schools in a district at a time. The state could share or completely assume management of the schools, convert them to charter schools, or close them. The OSD plan, developed after a study of similar programs in Louisiana and Tennessee, says the district would be led by a superintendent who is appointed by the governor and confirmed by the state Senate. The superintendent would report directly to the governor. The OSD or OSD charter school governing board would decide whether school employees would keep their positions. Employees not retained after the takeover would continue as employees of their local boards of education, which would decide whether to keep or release them. Dean’s proposal says it would give the

Registering now for 2017 > Ages 12 mos. through Kindergarten > Hours: 9:00 – 12:30; Kindergarten enrichment 2 days until 2:30pm > Early Bird Drop off at 8:30am > Discovery Days After School Program until 2:30pm for students enrolled in 3-yr old class or older > Accredited by AdvancEd (formerly SACS) > Certified School of Excellence by N. GA UMC Preschool Association > Developmentally Appropriate Curriculum > Community Registration for 2017-18 in January 2017; tours begin in October!

Limited spaces available in the current year

For more information call 404-250-9455 85 Mt. Vernon Highway, Atlanta 30328 | www.ssumc.org | email: nnadolski@ssumc.org

PHIL MOSIER

and doesn’t address the core of the problem of low achievement. “It is unclear if this amendment is designed to improve education for Georgia’s children, or designed to convert more schools to charter schools with for-profit management companies,” PTA leaders wrote in a letter to elected officials. “While we firmly believe that the state should provide assistance to our children in struggling schools, the root cause of many issues in education is poverty.” All of the currently takeover-eligible schools have high rates of poverty, according to the state. Brookhaven’s Woodward and Montclair elementary schools have an additional challenge in meeting state guidelines. Most of the children at both of schools are in the system’s ESOL (English to Speakers of Other Languages) program. Schools on the state’s takeover-eligibility list scored below 60 on a 100-point scale for three consecutive years on the qualifying measure, the College and Career Ready Performance Index. OSD schools would stay in the district for no more than 10 years and would be removed if they perform above the failing level for three consecutive years. After leaving the district, the schools would return to local control.

CENTERED AROUND OUR STUDENTS

When you visit, you will see…

● our 1:6 average teacher/student ratio. ● confident, engaged learners. ● small groups of children working

together and learning in new ways.

● smiles on our students’ faces. ● care in our teachers’ guidance. ● the acquisition of lifelong skills in

everything we do.

335 COLEWOOD WAY NW | SANDY SPRINGS, GA 30328-2956 | EPSTEINATLANTA.ORG


10 | Education Guide

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Education Briefs

A POWERFUL LEARNING COMMUNITY

FOR STUDENTS FROM ALL JEWISH BACKGROUNDS

TOUR. VISIT. MEET

Student Visit Days: starting 9·20·16 Family Information Nights: 10·6·16 and 11·8·16 Rise Arkin, Director of Admissions 404-917-2500 ext. 117 · risearkin@weberschool.org

Galloway School Middle Learning Principal and long-time softball coach Sarah Armstrong threw the first pitch at the school’s new baseball and softball facilities.

G A L LO WAY B UY S P R O P ER TY

FELICIA PENZELL WEBER

After The Galloway School abandoned its controversial effort to build a new softball complex in Sandy Springs, the school this summer struck a deal with Pace Academy to buy softball and baseball facilities on Warren Road in north Atlanta. “Our purchase of the Warren Road property fulfills the needs that we have at this time for additional athletics facilities to support softball and baseball,” Galloway spokeswoman Claire Horn said in an email. The complex at 2465 Warren Road includes a field and practice facilities for softball and baseball, and is located near the existing Galloway sports complex on Defoors Ferry Road, the school announced. Galloway opened its new sports complex on August 17 with a win by the varsity softball team, who beat North Atlanta High School 9 to 1. Last year, Galloway proposed building a softball facility on High Point Road in Sandy Springs, but the plan met strong opposition from neighbors. In January, Galloway withdrew the proposal. Pace says it will use the money from the sale to build new, state-of-the-art softball and middle-school baseball facilities at its Riverview Sports Complex, located at 5700 Riverview Road in Cobb County. Construction of the new facilities should be completed by late winter 2016, the school said in a press release.

TEC H DES I G NATI O N

Fulton County Schools received a new technology designation that recognizes its leadership in student privacy Continued on page 12


Education Guide | 11

SEPTEMBER. 16 - 29, 2016 ■ www.ReporterNewspapers.net

We are proud of our Vision for 21st Century Learning! In Atlanta, AJA is the only Jewish Day School offering preschool - 12th grade. Our Interdisciplinary Dual Curriculum and Learner-Driven Education model actively engages the children to reach their academic goals. We encourage:

Creativity and Innovation Collaboration Communication Critical Thinking & Problem Solving For a personal tour and to learn more about our wonderful school, please contact Erica Gal, Director of Admissions—404.520.9296 / egal@atljewishacademy.org

www.atljewishacademy.org

404.843.9900

spirit, pride, & community

SCHEDULE A TOUR


12 | Education Guide

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SAINT FRANCIS SCHOOLS Providing an exceptional college preparatory program

Education Briefs

SAINT FRANCIS SCHOOL OFFERS: S.A.I.S. / S.A.C.S. Accredited  No Religious Affiliation  SB 10 Eligible  Challenging College Preparatory Curriculum  AP, Honors, Traditional, and Support Courses  Small Class Size and Low Student/ Teacher Ratio  Study/Organizational Skills  Wilson Reading System® 

ROSWELL CAMPUS Grades 1 - 8 (770) 641-8257 x51

Ms. Ellen Brown, Director of Admissions ebrown@sfschools.net

UPCOMING TOURS Grades 1 - 5 Oct. 19 Nov. 9 Dec. 5

Grades 6 - 8 Oct. 18 Nov. 9 Dec. 6

 

     

Intensive Writing Approach S.T.E.A.M., Robotics, Broadcasting, and Video Google Apps for Education Laptops Required After School Homework Hour GHSA Sports Program Football and Equestrian Bus Service Available

Continued from page 8 protection and data security. Awarded by CoSN (the Consortium for School Networking), the Trusted Learning Environment Seal identifies school systems that demonstrate a commitment to ensuring the privacy and security of student data. “Fulton County Schools is pleased to be named among the nation’s top leaders in this important area,” said Serena Sacks, the school system’s chief information officer.

NEW H I ES SCHOO L LEAD ER S

MILTON CAMPUS Grades 9 - 12 (678) 339-9989 x33

Mr. Brandon Bryan, Admissions Coordinator bbryan@sfschools.net

UPCOMING TOURS Oct. 13 Dec. 1 Jan. 12

Saint Francis Elementary and Middle Schools | 9375 Willeo Road | Roswell, GA 30075 Saint Francis High School | 13440 Cogburn Road | Milton, GA 30004 www.saintfrancisschools.com

Steven R. Turner Jr. and Rev. Ricardo Bailey, below

Holy Innocents’ Episcopal School has named a new associate head of school and a new head chaplain. Steven R. Turner Jr., the new associate head of school, was formerly associate head of school for curriculum and instruction, and the middle school division head at Notre Dame de

LEARN TO THINK, LEARN TO LEAD...

Sion School in Kansas City. The new head chaplain, the Rev. Ricardo Bailey, comes to Holy Innocents’ from The Westminster Schools, where he taught Sacred Scripture and The Modern Civil Rights Movement. He was previously a Roman Catholic priest in the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Atlanta, and also served as the chaplain of Blessed Trinity Catholic High School in Roswell. Bailey was formally received as an Episcopalian priest in 2013.

P I EDM O NT S C HO O L M O V ES

The Piedmont School of Atlanta has moved onto Oglethorpe University’s historic Brookhaven campus. The Piedmont School serves high-achieving children with autism and other learning and social challenges.

SPECIAL

Riverwood International Charter School’s Band and Orchestra Boosters received a $6,000 grant from the Sandy Springs Society.

spiritually academically

R I V ERWO O D G ETS G R A NT

technologically

The Sandy Springs Society has awarded a $6,000 grant to the Riverwood International Charter School Band and Orchestra Boosters. The grant provides specialized music instruction for band and orchestra students as well as for the purchase of a wireless microphone system. The grant will provide support to the growing music program.

athletically culturally artistically

FUTUR E B US INES S L EA DER S

Come Feel the Difference at an Upcoming Open House LOWER AND MIDDLE SCHOOL Main Campus (JK-8)

UPPER SCHOOL North Campus (9-12)

November 10, 2016 – 10 a.m. January 11, 2017 – 10 a.m. February 2, 2017 – 10 a.m.

October 16, 2016 – 2 p.m. November 12, 2016 – 9 a.m. January 12, 2017 – 9 a.m.

www.MtBethelChristian.org • 770-971-0245 •

/MBCAEagles

Seven students from North Springs Charter High School won national recognition this summer at the Future Business Leaders of America National Leadership Conference in Atlanta. More than 9,300 high school students from across the U.S. and other countries took part. North Springs students Ohad Rau, Barnett Buchanan, a team of Sophie Frostbaum, Tanaka Chipere-Chitiyo and Morgan Tatje, Jordan Robinson and Vincent Dukes claimed honors.


Education Guide | 13

SEPTEMBER. 16 - 29, 2016 ■ www.ReporterNewspapers.net

Be Amazed. By and Beyond the Education. In a rapidly changing world, The Davis Academy is committed to preparing students for the future. From age 4 through eighth grade, our students grow through project-based learning, entrepreneurship and global experiences. When they discover the fun in learning, it inspires them to explore, share and learn more. The results are powerful.

BEYOND EXPECTATIONS

But don’t take our word for it. Come see for yourself! Schedule a private tour today or join us for

At Galloway, students (age 3-grade 12) are inspired to be fearless learners, to embrace challenges, and to discover more about themselves and the world around them.

an upcoming event or parent information session. Call 678-527-3300 or visit us online at davisacademy.org/events.

Now accepting applications for the 2017-2018 school year. To learn more and register for an admissions tour, visit

GALLOWAYSCHOOL.ORG/ADMISSIONS 8105 Roberts Drive, Atlanta, GA 30350 | 770-671-0085 | davisacademy.org

OPEN HOUSE

Enjoy brunch, tour the campus, learn about admissions and financial aid!

Saturday, October 8 10am - 12noon

4151 Ashford Dunwoody Road, Suite 130 | Atlanta, GA 30319

• Classes meet one night • •

a week or online Tuition includes books Financial Aid is available

• Fully Accredited • Military Friendly • Transcripts are ordered for you • Over 20 different programs

Pre-Register Now! Call 404.425.5590 or email ayoung@belhaven.edu


14 | Education Guide

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Farm-to-cafeteria: Schools provide fresh local produce for school lunches Continued from page 1

Lovett www.lovett.org

Developing young men and women of honor, faith, and wisdom with the character and intellect to thrive in college and in life.

OPEN HOUSE Saturday, Nov. 12 Kindergarten, 1:00 pm Sunday, Nov. 13 Grades 1–5, 1:00 pm Grades 6–8, 3:30 pm Wednesday, Jan. 25 Grades 9–12, 6:30 pm The Lovett School practices a nondiscriminatory admission policy. Financial aid is available.

School Initiative, where students get to experience fruits and vegetables that are grown locally or regionally. Whether featuring regionally grown produce each month, setting up raised garden beds or potted plants on school campuses, or learning about agriculture and the food journey in the classroom, metro Atlanta schoolchildren are getting a better understanding of nearby food sources and healthy eating choices. “‘Farm to School’ is a national initiative that connects school students to local farmers,” said Joyce R. Wimberly, executive director of School Nutrition Services, DeKalb County School System, in an email. “This program supports the department’s mission to promote lifetime wellness to DeKalb County students and staff by serving meals that are high quality, nutritious, enjoyable and economical.” National interest in farm-to-school efforts has been increasing, according to the USDA’s Farm to School Program page. In 2013-2014, school districts responding to the department’s Farm to School Census purchased almost $800 million in local food from farmers, ranchers, fishermen, and food processors and manufactur-

PHIL MOSIER

Cheri Mills, center, teaches students at Woodland Elementary School in Sandy Springs about acquatic gardens on Sept. 5.

ers, a 105 percent increase over the amount of local food bought in the 2011-2012 school year, when the first such census was conducted, the government organization said. Nationally, 42 percent of school districts responding to the 2015 census have farmto-school programs in place (as of the 20142015 school year) with another 16 percent having plans to start in the future, according to the website. In Dunwoody, Austin, Chesnut, Dunwoody, Kingsley and Vanderlyn elementary schools, Peachtree Middle School and Dunwoody High School take part in the Farm to Table program. In Brookhaven, Cross Keys High School and Ashford Park, Montclair, Montgomery, Kittredge and Woodward elementary schools are on board. And in Sandy Springs, all 11 schools in the city are involved in the program, according to the Fulton County school district. “The program has been very well received,” Wimberly said. “Success is measured by the number of students and staff that try the highlighted Farm to School item each month. Students look forward to the monthly items and the opportunity to taste-test different foods.” Students aren’t just learning about where their food comes from. Ruth Taylor, coordinator, School Nutrition Program at Fulton County Schools, said some schools take field trips to local farms so kids can actually see for themselves, or incorporate agricultural lessons into the curriculum. At schools with gardens, students are actually involved in maintaining and harvesting produce, further making a connection between the source of their food and the meals on their plates. DeKalb County purchases produce from a local produce vendor. Wimberly said seven different farms were used in school year 2015-2016 to supply the Farm to School produce — apples from Mercier Orchards in Blue Ridge; strawberries from Mathews Farm in Baxley; peaches from Taylor Or-


Education Guide | 15

SEPTEMBER. 16 - 29, 2016 ■ www.ReporterNewspapers.net

SEIGAKUIN ATLANTA INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL Japanese-English Bilingual School    

3 year olds—6th Grade Absolutely no prior knowledge of Japanese needed for children 5 and under Christian Values After School available until 6:00 PM Japanese students are world-renowned for their high test scores, discipline, and level of academic achievement. At Seigakuin, your child will learn more than just a second language. They will be educated according to the curriculum set forth by the Japanese Ministry of Education—the very same curriculum that has led Japan to the top of the world in academic success.

5505 Winters Chapel Rd, Atlanta, GA 30360 TEL: (770) 730-0045 info@seigakuin.us www.seig.ac.jp/english/atlanta Facebook: www.facebook.com/seigakuin.atlanta

PHIL MOSIER

Aila Courtenay, a second grader at Woodland Elementary School, inspects her Swiss chard that is ready to plant. The school offers a STEM environmental science program, which includes 23 raised garden beds, fruit trees and an acquatic garden containing tilapia.

chards in Reynolds; squash, cucumbers, peppers and cabbage from Moore & Porter in Thomasville, and from Baker Farms and JR Baker Farms, both in Norman Park; and broccoli and kale from Spring Hill Farms in Tifton. Featured produce from Georgia farms in Fulton County schools during 2015-2016 included hydro bibb lettuce from StoneCreek Hydroponics in Hartwell; kale from Herndon Country Farms, Vidalia; cabbage from Southern Valley Fruit & Vegetable, Norman Park; Georgia blueberry juice from Southern Press & Packing in Blackshear; and Georgia cucumbers from Southern Valley in Norman Park. Fulton County schools also get produce from farms in North Carolina and Florida. In the DeKalb system, some Brookhaven/Dunwoody area schools have gardens, including: Chesnut Elementary; Montgomery Elementary; Dunwoody Elementary; Austin Elementary; Peachtree Middle; and Ashford Park Elementary.

Forty Fulton County schools have their own gardens, including Heards Ferry Elementary School and Woodland Charter Elementary School. Taylor said the initiative also includes animal and dairy. On the nutrition program side of the lunch table in Fulton, Taylor said there’s encouragement to work with cafe managers to partner with the school gardens. “In that way we can feature those things and incorporate those in school menus,” she said. “Students can see it from start to finish,” Taylor said. “They’ve held the plant, they grow it, they nurture it, harvest it. They see the cafe at workers prepare it,” Taylor said. “What we know is, when you have that experience as a student, you’re so much more likely to want to try that fresh fruit or vegetable. You see that complete cycle for those students. Anytime we can get that experiential learning, we see that impact on the students.”

WON LLORNE gro.loohcsaib.www

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Brookhaven Innovation Academy Now Open!

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BIASCHOOL.ORG

www.biaschool.org

BIA is a new statewide districted public charter school with FREE TUITION, now K — 6th and growing to grades K — 8th by 2018.

NEW CHARTER

Research based instructional learning with emphasis on project based learning, personalized / blended learning, language arts, math & computer coding for all students.

SCHOOL OPENING

ELITE COLLEGE ADMISSIONS COACH Coaching 9th-12th graders exclusively for admissions to: Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Brown, Cornell, Dartmouth, Columbia, UPENN, MIT, Stanford, Chicago, West Point, Annapolis, and Air Force Academy Contact: John L. Johnson, Ph.D. (404) 277-2312 -- JLJOHNSON@POST.HARVARD.EDU Initial Consultation: $150

Jed

Applerouth

Live

Learn from a national expert on how to navigate the college admissions process.

Come see Jed speak throughout Atlanta: Dunwoody

Buckhead

Cumberland

Roswell

Alpharetta

Vinings

Dr. Jed Applerouth Founder and CEO

An Atlanta native, Jed started Applerouth Tutoring Services in 2001 and has since turned it into a nationallyrecognized leader in the field. Come see Jed speak throughout Atlanta on how to navigate the college admissions process. His seminars will arm you with information and timelines, dispel unhelpful myths, analyze key components of the college application, and explore how test scores and grades factor into the admissions process.

To see the upcoming schedule and to register, visit

applerouth.com/jed-live or call us at 404-793-1957 Come see Jed and be entered to win a free tutoring session with one of our expert tutors!

Applerouth also offers SAT/ACT tutoring, private tutoring, group classes, and subject tutoring. Visit applerouth.com or call us at 404-793-1957 for more information.

Better Tutors. Better Results.


16 | Education Guide

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Back-to-school costs are rising

Source: Huntington and Communities in Schools

R i v e r s i d e M i l i t a r y A c a d e my

T h e B es t i n B o y s E d u c a t i o n f o r 1 0 9 Year s ! Since 1907 Riverside Military Academy has remained one of the nation’s preeminent college preparatory academies educating young men in grades 7-12.

The 2016-17 Corps of Cadets consists of over 500 cadets from 26 countries and 30 states. Call today to schedule your personal tour of our beautiful 206-acre campus.       

www.cadet.com

Gainesville, Georgia

Year-round enrollment 15:1 cadet/teacher ratio AP/Honors Programs 14 varsity sports Performing and visual arts programs SACS/SAIS Accredited Worldwide Alumni

770.538.2938

091616 Brookhaven Reporter