Education

Druid Hills Annexation: Do Schools Stay Or Go?

Parents raised concerns at the Druid Hills High School PTSA meeting about a proposal to annex the school from DeKalb County into Atlanta Public Schools.
Parents raised concerns at the Druid Hills High School PTSA meeting about a proposal to annex the school from DeKalb County into Atlanta Public Schools.
Credit Elly Yu / WABE

If a neighborhood gets annexed into another city, do schools go with it? 

That was the question on many minds at the Druid Hills High PTSA meeting Thursday night. A crowd of about 300 hundred people met about a proposal to move the school out of DeKalb County Schools into the Atlanta Public Schools system, but parents raised concerns about what that could mean for students. 

As heard on the radio.

Druid Hills High School and its feeder schools are currently part of the DeKalb County School system, which was close to losing its accreditation  in 2012.

It’s one reason why parent Diane Benjamin wants to leave the district. She has children in both the elementary and middle school that feed into Druid Hills High.  

“I haven’t seen the county either on the school side or on the county government side do much right recently, honestly,” Benjamin said. “Corruption scandals, incompetency scandals on both sides. So I really would hope that either the county would do something to make people want to stay or get out of the way and let people go where they want to go.”

Local advocacy group, Together in Atlanta, wants the schools to go. The plan is part of an overall proposal to annex the Druid Hills neighborhood into the City of Atlanta.

But parent Steve Perkins opposes annexation and says he doesn’t want the district to split up.

I would rather work to fix the problems with the school board and the county commission than to blow the whole county up and not have a chance to fix it down the road,” Perkins said.

Parents also raised concerns that up to 1,000 students who don’t live in Druid Hills could be left out.

DeKalb County Schools Superintendent Michael Thurmond has said he plans to go into legal battle to keep the schools.  

However, in order for Druid Hills to become part of the City of Atlanta, it needs state legislative approval. A bill for annexation has not yet been filed, according to Georgia House Rep. Mary Margaret Oliver. The state legislative session starts Monday.