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Special state funding adds 49 school busses in DeKalb County

Special state funding adds 49 school busses in DeKalb County

DEKALB COUNTY -- The DeKalb County School District is adding 49 new busses to its fleet, without impacting the general budget.

Funds given from the Georgia Department of Education and the Georgia State Financing and Investment Commission will make it easier to transport DeKalb's 62,000 students to and from school each day, according to DCSD.

The Board of Education approved the purchase of the busses at a meeting on October 8. The Blue Bird busses carry up to 72 passengers. As of now, 20 Blue Bird busses have passed inspection and have arrived ready-to-use. The rest of the busses will be put to use over the next several weeks.

"Our mechanics and drivers work diligently to care for and maintain our fleet of more than 850 busses, but it can be challenging with the incredible volume of miles that we drive each day," DCSD Bus Fleet Director Anthony Jackson said.

According to DCSD, its busses travel 11 million miles in one year.

Look for JROTC cadets collecting for the Empty Stocking Fund Nov. 3-4

Look for JROTC cadets collecting for the Empty Stocking Fund Nov. 3-4

More than 2,000 JROTC cadets from 30 metro Atlanta high schools
to participate in historic fundraising effort

On Saturday, November 3rd and Sunday, November 4th, visitors to metro Atlanta Kroger stores are likely to be met by a smiling, uniformed JROTC cadet with an Empty Stocking Fund logo, as more than 2,000 cadets representing 30 metro Atlanta high schools’ JROTC programs will be working outside metro Kroger stores to raise awareness of and contributions for The Empty Stocking Fund, an Atlanta-based, Atlanta-serving non-profit organization that has been providing holiday gifts to Atlanta’s neediest children since 1926. 

Confused over the Charter School Amendment?

Confused over the Charter School Amendment?

ATLANTA -- If you're confused about Amendment One on this year's general election ballot, you're not alone.

Wednesday we asked some early voters in Cobb County what they thought of the wording, which asks:

"Shall the Constitution of Georgia be amended to allow state or local approval of public charter schools upon the request of local communities?"

"It was a bit confusing," said voter Brett Atkinson.

Voter Larshaun Williams said she would not have understood it without doing a lot of homework first.

"Definitely," she told 11 Alive, "I would not have known which direction to go."

Even more confusing to some is the wording of the preamble, just before the actual amendment question:

"Provides for improving student achievement and parental involvement through more public charter school options."

There's now a lawsuit claiming that preamble wording is misleading in favor of the amendment.

Shoe Drive at FMSA: Community invited to participate

Shoe Drive at FMSA: Community invited to participate

SANDY SPRINGS, Ga. -- If you're running out of shelf space to store your shoes, consider donating a few pairs to the Soles4Souls shoe drive. Through Friday, Nov. 2, First Montessori School of Atlanta, located at 5750 Long Island Drive in Sandy Springs, has a drop box available in the school pavilion to accept donations from the community.

Soles4Souls is a 501(c)(3) organization that collects shoes from the warehouses of footwear companies and the closets of people like you. Since 2005, the organization has delivered over 19 million pairs of new and gently worn shoes to people in more than 125 countries, including Kenya, Thailand, Nepal and the United States.

Habersham Gardens Hosts FMSA Art Show

Habersham Gardens Hosts FMSA Art Show

MIDTOWN -- Habersham Gardens, located in Midtown Atlanta, welcomed fall with an art show by students of First Montessori School of Atlanta. Approximately 185 colorful pinwheels, sunflowers and seed packets were displayed during the evening reception.

Art Teacher Theresa Dean mixed history with art, exposing students to early American art and how seed packets were originally produced. Since many farmers in early America couldn't read, packets included both images and text. When designing their artwork, some FMSA students got very creative and made up names for their plants, she said.

The students drew sunflowers, outlined them with black glue and then painted them with water colors.

"This is the third year we've worked with Habersham Gardens on this fun event," said Head of School Jerri King.

FMSA Takes World Water Monitoring Challenge

FMSA Takes World Water Monitoring Challenge

ATLANTA -- Fourteen students, ages 7 - 11, from First Montessori School of Atlanta, recently participated in the World Water Monitoring Challenge™ at The John Ripley Forbes Big Trees Preserve in the City of Sandy Springs. WWMC is an international education and outreach program that encourages people of all ages to conduct basic monitoring of their local water bodies.

DeKalb Schools adopt balanced calendar

DeKalb Schools adopt balanced calendar

DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. -- The DeKalb County Board of Education has voted to adopt a balanced calendar for the 2013-14 school year.

The board made its decision after receiving feedback from more than 12,000 members of the community, including parents, students and school staff members. About 68 percent of staff members favored a balanced calendar, while 59 percent of parents wanted to keep a traditional one.

RELATED | DeKalb Schools proposes calendar options

With the new calendar, classes in DeKalb public schools will begin on Aug. 5, 2013 and end on May 29, 2014. Spring Break will be moved to the week of Apr. 7, 2014; students will also get two additional weeks of vacation during the school year.