Decatur's School Board and City Commission are trying to improve communications.
The two boards will meet jointly twice a year to talk about school enrollment and other matters, City Manager Peggy Merriss and School Superintendent Phyllis Edwards said Friday in emails. Dates for the meetings have not been set.
The decision to hold joint meetings follows resident complaints about the handling of the 315 West Ponce apartment project. The schools and city hall didn't communicate directly about the 235-unit project's impact on enrollment in the already crowded schools.
Merriss said she, Mayor Jim Baskett, Edwards and School Board Chairman Marc Wisniewski met March 26 to talk about "a number of items that we all have interest in, including current and future developments and trends, the Beacon Complex, the joint Public Works/Facilities Maintenance Building, demographics of the City and the future needs of City Schools in regards to enrollment increases."
That meeting has been planned before recent redevelopment decisions, she said, adding, "We met Tuesday because it was the first time we could make everyone's schedules work."
Merriss also said Edwards and school staff members will be included in the city government's monthly capital improvement team meetings.
The school board and city commission are independently elected. Though the city and schools communicated closely during recent annexation discussions, there's no formal procedure for school input when apartment or condo projects are proposed.
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You might be interested in these previous stories.
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