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Rep. Tom Taylor Tells Dunwoody How Economics is Driving His Desire for Changes to Our School System

Transcribed from a Dunwoody coffee talk held by Nancy Jester last year, Rep. Tom Taylor (the sponsor of the bill for Lavista Hills) says that "they" (Dunwoody) have great schools and its the rest of DeKalb that has a problem.

Save Tucker! contends that it is EXACTLY this type of thinking that is preventing our system from improving.  When you have the cream of the crop of 100,000 students to pick and choose from, of course your schools will be better than the ones you plucked them from.  

Rep. Taylor's speech, in part:

" ...  I am also on the economic development committee... we were down at Gulfstream in Savannah which is a aircraft manufacturer, just a jewel for the state of Georgia and they have a seven year backlog of orders.  Their average, entry-level aircraft is about $65 million dollars.  They employ a lot of people.  They don't employ a lot of people from Georgia.
 And, at the end of the conversation we had with the top three business executives, we asked, "You've got this beautiful business, what can we do?"
And all three of them said, "Education.  You've got to do something about education."

Kia - We've got a great program in Georgia called  "Quick Start."  It trains workers and basically selects them and actually ... when when I went down to Kia and more than half the license plates in their parking lot are from Alabama. 
Third thing, SB 70, remove the entire school system, a lot of pushback. Atlanta is Georgia.  Worldwide Headquarters, UPS  - they say Atlanta.

HR 46, I dropped last session, pretty well received ... except a few not receiving it well. The last you hear is "we don't have to educate children."

Governor removed the DeKalb County School System.  Out of the 23 member of the the status quo - which was failing.  That is unacceptable.
Back in 1983:  180 school systems in Georgia, which is 159 counties and 21 city school systems...

End of the day, we've got great schools here in Dunwoody, but we're part of a system that's failing.

And it does affect us from an economic development standpoint because we're looking and here we've got:  Great CID, Dunwoody, great place from an economic standpoint, but you've got to do something about  your school system."

So, what does he do?  He plans to abandon it.  He wants Dunwoody to have its own system.  And now he is helping Lavista Hills by sponsoring a bill for cityhood.  Does he really want to help them, or does he just need their votes on his city school system bill?  Can Lavista Hills, Tucker or any other city in DeKalb, besides Dunwoody and possibly Brookhaven, actually support their own school system?   Or, is the promise being made to every community that they, too, can have great things if they jump on board and follow the same plan?

We all know that the rest of DeKalb doesn't have the same kind of income and growth that Dunwoody has experienced with the help of Perimeter Center.  We also know that things have not always been as easy for them as they would like us to believe.

If you plan to vote for a city simply based on the "idea" of getting a school system separate from what we have in DeKalb, then you are taking a big risk ... with other people's money.  Government isn't intended to be something that works just for you.  It is supposed to work the same way for everyone.

Is it?

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