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Atlanta Public Schools to hold meetings on potential rezoning effort at overcrowded schools

The meeting will address the potential moving of students currently enrolled or projected to enroll at several APS schools.

ATLANTA — Atlanta Public Schools will hold the first in a series of meetings Wednesday that will address the possible rezoning for students of at least three schools. 

The meeting will address the potential moving of students currently enrolled or projected to enroll at schools in southeast Atlanta, including Maynard H. Jackson High.

Subsequent meetings will be held on Thursday, March 9 for Midtown High School and Wednesday, March 15 for Woodson Park Academy, a KIPP elementary school in Grove Park. Virtual sessions will be at noon, while in-person sessions will be held at 6 p.m.

RELATED: More than 350 students withdrawn from Westlake High over residency eligibility

APS materials project overcrowding within two years at Maynard H. Jackson High, Midtown High and Woodson Park Academy. Changes in zoning, if they take place, would be in effect for the 2024-25 school year - though the APS materials state no zoning change is an option that remains on the table.

The overcrowding projections include:

  • Maynard H. Jackson High: Current capacity of 1,500; '24-25 projected enrollment of 1,500; 5-year average 100% capacity projection
  • Midtown High: Current capacity of 1,525; '24-25 projected enrollment of 1,711; 5-year average 111% capacity projection
  • Woodson Park Academy: Current capacity of 820; '24-25 projected enrollment of 865; 5-year average 107% capacity

A video outline states APS' goal is to get to 90% capacity with rezoning.

The Centennial Academy charter school also is course to face severe overcrowding, according to APS, with meetings not yet currently scheduled but intended to coincide with the school's charter renewal process.

The plan for Maynard H. Jackson High and other schools in Grant Park is the most complicated among the three. It would involving several moves, among them: 

  • Rezoning parts of the Maynard H. Jackson High cluster to Carver High
  • Rezoning some King Middle School areas to Price Middle School
  • Rezoning some Benteen Elementary and Obama Elementary areas to Slater Elementary
  • Rezoning some Parkside Elementary areas to Benteen Elementary and Obama Elementary 

Its video outline indicates about 75 students would be rezoned.

The plan for Midtown High would rezone parts to Washington High. Its video outline indicates more than 200 students would be rezoned.

The plan for Woodson Park Academy would rezone parts to Boyd Elementary, Usher Elementary and John Lewis Invictus Academy Middle School, and also rezone parts of Boyd Elementary to Usher Elementary under one plan; and in an alternative plan would rezone parts of Woodson Park to Boyd Elementary, F.L. Stanton Elementary and John Lewis Invictus, as well as parts of Boyd Elementary to Scott Elementary.

The Woodson Park plan is the only one of the three with two alternatives. Its video outline indicates a target for rezoning about 160-180 students.

The "no-change" option that's still attached to all three schools would call for:

  • An innovation review
  • A review for the potential to add to existing capacity
  • Reviewing available resources to add support
  • Completing a residency review of current students

Under the last element of that plan, many students could wind up having to change schools anyway. A similar review recently undertaken at Westlake High by the Fulton County Schools system resulted in more than 350 students being withdrawn.

A draft recommendation for APS final plans is due April 1, according to a district timeline. Further community meetings and outreach is scheduled for April 11-13 and April 17-21, in as-yet unspecified formats.

The Atlanta Board of Education would review the plans in May and potentially ratify them at its June 5 meeting.


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