By Curt Yeomans
Clayton County Public Schools Superintendent Edmond Heatley's first community forum on the quality of education children receive in the school district will be held on Thursday.
The 90-minute session at Mundy's Mill High School will begin at 6 p.m. It will be the first in a four-part, month-long series of forums in which the county's new school chief will entertain questions about the school system from parents and other county residents. Mundy's Mill High School is located at 9652 Fayetteville Road, in Jonesboro.
"I really want to know what our residents have to say about public education in general, and our school district specifically," Heatley said in a written statement. "The format will be simple - the audience will furnish the comments and the questions that will power each session."
School System Spokesman Charles White said attendees of the forums will be given note cards upon arrival, and questions for the superintendent should be written on those cards and returned to district employees. He said Heatley will read each question aloud before answering it.
School system interpreters will be available for community members who are not proficient in English, White said.
Future forum sessions are scheduled to take place on Sept. 10 at Charles R. Drew High School, 6237 Garden Walk Blvd., in Riverdale; on Sept. 23 at Morrow High School, 2299 Old Rex Morrow Road, in Morrow; and on Sept. 30 at Mt. Zion High School, 2535 Mt. Zion Parkway, in Jonesboro. All of the future forum sessions will begin at 6 p.m.
The session scheduled to take place at Morrow High School was moved from its original date of Sept. 24, because of a scheduling conflict at the school. Morrow's football team is scheduled to play a game on that day, White said. Holding both events at the same time would have meant school employees and members of the community would have been forced to choose between the two.
White said another series of forums may be held later in the school year, to garner feedback from the community on whether the issues raised during the first forum series are being addressed by the district.